Low Interest Personal Loans

The best low interest personal loans for good to excellent credit

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There are many reasons to apply for a personal loan. You may want to consolidate credit card debt, fund a wedding, or pay for home improvements. To qualify for a low interest personal loan, though, you need to be a creditworthy borrower. The best lenders are looking for a steady income, good to excellent credit, and a low debt-to-income ratio

To create our list, we looked at the most competitive personal loan interest rates—along with 25 important data points.

Low Interest Personal Loans–October 2020

Lender Best For APR Range Minimum Loan Amount Maximum Loan Amount Terms Recommended Credit Score
SoFi Best Overall 5.99%–18.53% with autopay $5,000 $100,000 2—7 years 680+
LightStream Best for Good Credit 3.99%–19.99% with autopay $5,000 $100,000 24—144 months 680+
Marcus by Goldman Sachs Best for Debt Consolidation 6.99%–19.99% $3,500 $40,000 36—72 months 660+
Alliant Credit Union Best for Hardship Protection 6.24%–10.24% $1,000 $50,000 12–60 months 670+
American Express Best for Debt Consolidation 5.91%–19.98% $3,500 $40,000 12–36 months 670+
Payoff Best for Fair Credit 5.99%–24.99% $5,000 $40,000 24–60 months 640+
Wells Fargo Best Bank 5.74%–20.24% with relationship discount $3,000 $100,000 12–84 months 670+
PenFed Credit Union Best Loan for Veterans 6.49%–17.99% $500 $20,000 6–60 months 580+
Loan amounts, APR, and repayment period may vary by loan purpose or type.

Best Overall: SoFi

SoFi

SoFi offers one of the most competitive personal loans on the market. With low interest rates and exclusive member benefits, SoFi’s personal loan may be a good fit if you have good to excellent credit.

Pros
  • Low starting interest rate of 5.99% for the most creditworthy borrowers

  • Ability to prequalify with a soft credit check

  • Unemployment protection if you experience a layoff

Cons
  • Tough to qualify with less than good to excellent credit

  • Funding takes longer than some of SoFi’s competitors

  • Better rates elsewhere for borrowers with excellent credit

Other important information:

  • Minimum/Maximum Loan Amounts: $5,000 to $100,000
  • APR Range: 5.99%–18.53% (includes 0.25% autopay discount)
  • Fees: None
  • Minimum Credit Score: Reported to be 680 or higher (no confirmation on SoFi’s website)
  • Other Qualification Requirements: Employment, income from other sources, or a job offer starting within 90 days; a good credit history; and a low debt-to-income ratio 
  • Repayment Terms: 24 to 84 months
  • Time to Receive Funds: A few days
  • Restrictions: Must be at least 18 years old and a U.S. citizen, visa holder, or permanent resident; not available in Mississippi

   Read the full review: SoFi

LightStream: Best for Excellent Credit

LightStream

LightStream, an online lender owned by SunTrust Bank, offers interest rates as low as 3.99% for borrowers with good to excellent credit. The most creditworthy borrowers may qualify for a personal loan up to $100,000. Low interest rates and large loan amounts make LightStream a good fit for borrowers with a strong credit history.

Pros
  • Low starting interest rate of 3.99% for certain types of loans

  • No fees for loan origination, prepayment, or late payments

  • Autopay discount of 0.5%

Cons
  • Tough to qualify without a good to excellent credit score

  • No option to prequalify for a personal loan without hurting your credit score

  • Online-only application

Other important information:

  • Minimum/Maximum Loan Amounts: $5,000 to $100,000
  • APR Range: 3.99%–19.99% (includes 0.5% autopay discount)
  • Fees: None
  • Minimum Credit Score: Reported to be 680 (no confirmation on LightStream’s website)
  • Other Qualification Requirements: Looking for several years of strong credit history, a mix of account types, few or no late payments, steady income, and savings
  • Repayment Terms: 24 to 144 months
  • Time to Receive Funds: As early as the same business day
  • Restrictions: Can’t use for college costs, to refinance student loans, to fund your business, or to buy stocks, bonds, or other securities

LightStream’s lowest interest rates and longest repayment term aren’t available for all loan types.

Read the full review: LightStream

Marcus by Goldman Sachs: Best for Flexible Payments

Marcus by Goldman Sach

Marcus by Goldman Sachs offers a competitive personal loan for borrowers with good to excellent credit. The most creditworthy borrowers may qualify for interest rates starting as low as 6.99%, no personal loan fees, and payment flexibility. It may be a good fit if your credit is strong and you need up to $40,000 to pay off high-interest debt.

Pros
  • No fees for loan origination, prepayment, late payments, or other fees


  • Change your payment due date up to three times during the life of your loan

  • On-time payment reward that defers one payment after 12 consecutive on-time payments

Cons
  • Difficult to qualify without a strong credit history

  • Less competitive interest rates for longer-term loans 


  • No cosigners allowed

Other important information:

  • Minimum/Maximum Loan Amounts: $3,500 to $40,000
  • APR Range: 6.99%–19.99% (includes 0.25% autopay discount)
  • Fees: None
  • Minimum Credit Score: 660 or higher
  • Other Qualification Requirements: Be at least 18 years old with a U.S. bank account and Social Security number or Individual Tax I.D. number
  • Repayment Terms: 36 to 72 months
  • Time to Receive Funds: One to four business days to receive the money after approval
  • Restrictions: Can’t be used to refinance student loans

   Read the full review: Marcus

Alliant Credit Union: Best for Hardship Protection

Alliant Credit Union

Alliant, a nationwide credit union, offers personal loans with competitive interest rates. Alliant’s Debt Protection program is a feature that may cancel your monthly payment—or even the entire balance—under certain circumstances. Alliant’s personal loan may be a good option for credit union members with good to excellent credit.

Pros
  • Low interest rates with a maximum APR of 10.24%

  • Possible to receive the money within the same business day

  • No origination or prepayment fees

Cons
  • Membership in the credit union required

  • Extra fee for debt protection program

  • Shorter loan terms of up to 60 months

Other important information:

  • Minimum/Maximum Loan Amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • APR Range: 6.24%–10.24% (includes 0.4% autopay discount)
  • Fees: Late payment and returned payment fees of $27
  • Minimum Credit Score: Reported to be 670 (no confirmation on Alliant Credit Union’s website)
  • Other Qualification Requirements: Must be a member of Alliant Credit Union with steady income
  • Repayment Terms: 12 to 60 months
  • Time to Receive Funds: Possible to receive the money the same business day
  • Restrictions: Can’t fund business or education costs, according to a representative

American Express: Best for Debt Consolidation

American Express

American Express offers a solid personal loan for existing customers. Those targeted with an offer may check rates with a soft credit check. American Express’ personal loan may be a good option for those with good to excellent credit who want to consolidate credit card debt.

Pros
  • Competitive interest rates starting as low as 6.98%

  • Prequalify for personal loan without hurting your credit score

  • Consolidate credit card debt by sending proceeds directly to your creditor

Cons
  • Exclusive offer for existing American Express customers

  • No flexibility on payment due date

  • Slow loan funding compared with some competitors

Other important information:

  • Minimum/Maximum Loan Amounts: $3,500 to $40,000
  • APR Range: 5.91%–19.98% 
  • Fees: Late fee of $39
  • Minimum Credit Score: Reported to be 640 (no confirmation on American Express’ website)
  • Other Qualification Requirements: Must be an existing American Express customer with a targeted offer
  • Repayment Terms: 12 to 36 months
  • Time to Receive Funds: Three to five business days after approval
  • Restrictions: Can’t pay for education, real estate, or business costs; buying stocks; purchasing a vehicle; or debts on American Express credit cards

Payoff: Best for Fair Credit

P

Payoff is a peer to peer lender launched in 2005 and headquartered in Tustin, California. The lender offers rates as low as 5.99%, which is competitive even with loans requiring a good credit score. The downside is that Payoff isn’t available nationwide.

Pros
  • Ability to check rate with affecting credit score

  • Access to FICO credit score

  • No prepayment penalty

Cons
  • Not available in all states

  • High minimum loan amount

  • Individual applications only

Other important information:

  • Maximum/minimum amount you can borrow: $5,000 to $40,000
  • APR range: 5.99%–24.99%
  • Fees: 0% to 5% origination fee
  • Minimum recommended credit score: 640
  • Other qualification requirements: Cannot apply with a co-borrower
  • Repayment terms: 24 to 60 months
  • Time to receive funds: Within three to six business days
  • Restrictions: Not available in Massachusetts, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, or West Virginia.

Read the full review: Payoff

Wells Fargo: Best Bank

WF

Wells Fargo is probably one of the largest and most well-known banks in the U.S. Existing customers can apply for a personal loan online or over the phone, whereas new customers will need to head to their 5,400+ branches. Rates start as low as 5.74% if you can qualify for the relationship discount.

Pros
  • Minimal fees

  • Offers rate discounts

  • Different options to apply for a loan

Cons
  • Cannot prequalify, so you’ll be subject to a hard credit inquiry

  • New customers need to show up at a Wells Fargo branch

  • Bank has history of scandals

Other important information:

  • Maximum/minimum amount you can borrow: $3,000 to $100,000
  • APR range: 5.74%–24.24% with relationship discount
  • Minimum recommended credit score: 670
  • Fees: None
  • Other qualification requirements: Need to be the age of majority in their state and be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Repayment terms: 12 to 84 months
  • Time to receive funds: As soon as the next business day
  • Restrictions: New customers need to show up in person

Read the full review: Wells Fargo

PenFed Credit Union: Best Loan for Veterans

PF

Personal loans from PenFed Credit Union are best for those looking for short-term loans and low borrowing amounts. Applicants can qualify for loans as low as $500 with rates starting at 6.49%. To become a member, applicants need to join the National Military Family Organization or Voice for America’s Troops for $17.

Pros
  • No origination fees

  • Can submit joint applications

  • Loans as low as $500

Cons
  • No prequalification option available

  • Borrowers need to be member of credit union

  • Loans max out at $20,000

Other important information:

  • Maximum/minimum amount you can borrow: $500 to $20,000
  • APR range: 6.49%–17.99%
  • Fees: None
  • Minimum recommended credit score: 580
  • Other qualification requirements: The credit union will take your debt, income and credit history in addition to your credit score
  • Repayment terms: 6 to 60 months
  • Time to receive funds: As soon as the next business day
  • Restrictions: Credit union membership required

What Is a Low Interest Rate Personal Loan?

A low interest rate personal loan is a type of installment loan. These personal loans are fixed amounts with a defined payoff timeline and usually have a fixed interest rate. Low interest rate loans are among the most competitive to qualify for, which means you will pay less over the life of the loan. Your interest rate is typically much lower than the average credit card.

Where Can You Get a Low Interest Personal Loan?

There are several options for getting a low interest personal loan. These options may include:

Banks

You may apply for a personal loan through a traditional or brick-and-mortar bank.

Company Name APR Terms
Wells Fargo

5.74% to 24.24% with relationship discount

12 to 84 months

American Express

6.98% to 19.98%

12 to 36 months

TD Bank

6.99% to 21.99% with autopay discount

12 to 60 months

Credit Unions

You may also find competitive personal loan options through nonprofit credit unions.

Company Name APR Terms

Alliant Credit Union

6.24% to 10.24% with autopay discount

12 to 60 months

PenFed

6.49% to 17.99%

Six to 60 months

Navy Federal

7.49% to 18%

Six to 60 months

Online Lenders

You may find personal loans through online lenders that don’t typically have a physical location.

Company Name APR Terms

LightStream

3.49% to 19.99% with autopay discount

24 to 144 months

SoFi

5.99% to 16.19% with autopay discount

24 to 84 months

Peer-to-Peer Lenders

You may also borrow from a peer-to-peer lender. These companies facilitate lending and borrowing between individuals.

Company Name APR Terms
Peerform

5.99% to 29.99%

36 to 60 months

What Are the Average Personal Loan Interest Rates?

The average 24-month personal loan interest rate is 9.63%, according to the latest Federal Reserve data. Depending on your creditworthiness, personal loan interest rates may range from 6% to 36%, which is higher than the options from our list.

How Can You Qualify for a Low Interest Rate?

Low interest rate personal loans can be tough to qualify for. You generally have to be among the most creditworthy borrowers to get approved. Lenders are looking for steady income, good to excellent credit, and a reasonable debt-to-income ratio.

The Bottom Line

A low interest rate personal loan is an excellent way to pay off high-interest debt or pay for home improvements. However, you should always examine your family’s monthly budget—and ability to pay back the loan—before applying for any type of loan.

Methodology

Investopedia is dedicated to providing consumers with unbiased, comprehensive reviews of personal loan lenders for all borrowing needs. We collected over 25 data points across more than 50 lenders—including interest rates, fees, loan amounts, and repayment terms—to ensure that our content helps users make the right borrowing decision for their needs.

Compare Personal Loan Rates With Our Partners At Fiona.com

Article Sources

Investopedia requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy .
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