List of the best personal loans for a best purchase.
You will want to get the best purchase, a personal loan if you want to fund a major purchase.
A personal loan can help you pay for what you purchase over time, often with a fixed interest rate, which can make it more appealing than a variable-rate credit card.
These are our choices for the best loans for big purchases. We defined what we think distinguishes them and we discussed some other options for your purchase financing.
Best purchase for good credit: SoFi
Why a SoFI personal loan stands out
SoFi notes that its personal loans are for individuals with a responsible financial history and strong monthly cash flow. Advantageous interest rates are the motivation to follow certain conditions that will make your purchase easier to access and, if you’re concerned you may not qualify on your own or pursue a lower interest rate, SoFi allows co-applicants to use (as long as they live at the same address). It can help you save money at a lower rate by adding a co-applicant with stronger credit than your own, who will share responsibility for repaying the loan.
- Large loan amounts — SoFi provides loan amounts of between $5,000 and $100,0000 for significant loan amounts. (If you apply through Credit Karma, the loan amounts and terms will differ.) If you need to make a big purchase, that range is fantastic. But if you only need to borrow a few thousand dollars, you may want to look elsewhere rather than borrow more than you need.
- No-fee guarantee — SoFi is not going to nickel and dime you with fees. Indeed, it ensures that no fees, including common fees, such as origination fees, late fees and pre-payment penalties are levied.
- Members-only perks — SoFi provides its members access to an unemployment insurance program and career advice, as well as interest rate promotions and member networking activities.
Best purchase for good credit: SoFi
Why PNC Bank stands out
If you only need to borrow a few thousand dollars or less to make your big purchase, personal loans from PNC Bank might be a good solution as they start at just $1,000. PNC also doesn’t charge for its personal loans an origination fee, processing fee or prepayment penalty.
- Co-applicants allowed — PNC will encourage you to add a co-applicant to your personal loan application, which can assist you in getting a loan or applying for a better rate.
- In-person closing — One possible negative in the process is that you would have to make an appointment to close your personal loan in person if accepted. You’ll want to apply elsewhere if you want an all-digital experience. And note that while PNC is a big bank, in every state it doesn’t have locations.
- Short loan terms available — PNC provides personal loans with terms as short as six months if you want to pay off your loan quickly (and as long as 60 months).
Best purchase for less-than-perfect credit: Avant
Why Avant stands out
If your reputation is not flawless, because the lender claims most of its customers have credit scores between 600 and 700, Avant could be a good fit. However, keep in mind that its range of interest rates may be higher than that offered by other lenders.
- Secured loans available — Avant also provides secured loans in addition to unsecured personal loans. You may apply as leverage to use your car and probably earn a lower interest rate. But that means you may lose your car if you default on your loan.
- Loan amounts — Vary from $2,000 to $35,000 for Avant’s unsecured personal loans, while $5,000 to $25,000 for its secured loans.
- Administration fee — You charge an administrative fee, which you subtract for processing of your credit from your total credit funds. Because you want to calculate how much money you want to request. The fee can vary depending on whether your loan is unsecured or secured.
- Potentially fast funding — When accepted, the funds can be deposited into your bank account immediately on the next business day. That is helpful if you quickly need the money.
Best purchase for competitive rates: LightStream
Why LightStream stands out
LightStream, Truist Bank’s online lending arm, provides affordable interest-rate personal loans. And if you’re willing to do some additional leg work, you may be able to qualify for the “rate beat” program of LightStream, which shaves another 0.1 percent off your interest rate if another lender gives you a lower interest rate and satisfies certain criteria.
- Same-day loans possible — If you’re really in a rush to get your loan approved, LightStream might be a good match. Same-day loans are possible. If your application is approved and the final verification is done by 2:30 p.m. Eastern time, the same business day, your loan funds will be deposited in your bank account.
- Good credit required — LightStream says its loans award a financial accountability track record. It says LightStream customers usually have a credit history of many years, a money saving record, stable and sufficient revenue and a payment history with few (if any) negative marks.
- Loan amounts — LightStream provides personal loans from $5,000 to $100,000, so if you need to borrow a greater amount, it might be a good fit.
Best for secured loans: Wells Fargo
Why Wells Fargo stands out
Wells Fargo provides personal loans which are unsecured and secured. You’ll have to be an existing Wells Fargo customer to apply online. Because of the broad loan amount range ($3,000 to $250,000), its secured loans are appealing. That enables you to apply a lot, or a little, to borrow. You may also promise a savings account or CD as collateral instead of your car.
- Competitive rates — Wells Fargo’s rates are competitive on both unsecured and secured loans, making it an appealing choice to consider.
- Origination fee for secured loan — While the unsecured loans from Wells Fargo do not have an origination fee, if you opt for a secured personal loan, you will pay a fee.
- Co-applicants allowed — Wells Fargo will allow you if you want to apply with another user. That could help you apply for a lower interest rate or get accepted.
What you need to know about big loans for purchases
A personal loan will assist you to fund a large purchase and spread the payments over time. However, it’s prudent to compare potential loan terms and to determine if the monthly payments will match your budget before you decide if this is a good choice for you.
Some lenders offer a prequalification process that allows you to apply without impacting your credit. Also offers to see an average rate and conditions. Only take into account that you don’t obtain final approval, or your terms can differ if you are approved. You would also possibly trigger a difficult investigation that will impact your credit scores.
Loan alternatives for big purchases
You can consider a few other funding options if you’re not sure that a personal loan is right for your big purchase.
- Credit card with an introductory deal — A credit card can also make sense if you are planning to apply for new credit. Some cards offer an introductory offer of 0 percent APR for a limited time span (usually between 12 and 21 months). That could be a good option for you if you may apply for a zero-interest credit card and think you can pay off your purchase in full before the promotional period is over.
- Home equity loan — You will be eligible to apply for a home equity loan if you buy a home and have equity in it, meaning its present value is more than what you owe on your mortgage. Using your house as collateral, a home equity loan allows you to borrow against the equity of your home and usually has a fixed interest rate.
- Home equity line of credit — is similar to a home equity loan, except that it is a revolving line of credit that also has a variable rate of interest. When you can borrow money, some plans have a fixed time called a “draw period” and then a repayment period.
The way we chose these loans
To come up with this list, we considered more than two dozen personal loans. Among other considerations, we considered availability, conditions for eligibility, interest rates, fees, funding speed and the opportunity to include a co-applicant.