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Personal Loans

Driveway Paving Financing Options

Updated Jun 13, 2023   |   18-min read

Your driveway is one of the first items prospective homebuyers see when they visit your property.

Even if you aren’t listing your home for sale, a driveway with large cracks, potholes, chunks of eroding pavement, missing brick or cobble, or an overall weathered and aged appearance can be unattractive—and could damage your car’s tires over time.

Repaving your driveway is an easy solution, but it can get expensive. On average, HomeAdvisor estimates homeowners spend between $4,000 and $10,000 to redo their driveways. So what can you do if that’s not in your budget?

Driveway financing—through personal loans, home equity loans, home equity lines of credit, or even direct lines of credit from the driveway paving company—can make this project doable, even if you don’t have the cash on hand.

In this guide:

Cost to pave or repave a driveway

Costs to pave or repave an asphalt or blacktop driveway can go as high as $10,000, depending on the square footage. For some homeowners, driveway paving financing is the only way to tackle a project of this size. 

Material costs to install or repair a driveway can vary depending on the type of driveway. Gravel and concrete driveways are the cheapest, while driveway pavers can go as high as $30 per square foot, according to Forbes.

The table below shows the average material cost range for a 600-square-foot driveway. But remember: You’ll also pay labor costs, which can go from $1 to $15 per square foot, depending on the work involved.

Type of drivewayMaterial cost range for 600 square feet
Gravel$600 – $1,800
Concrete$1,800 – $10,800
Asphalt or blacktop$4,200 – $7,800
Pavers$6,000 – $18,000

If you don’t have room in your budget for loan repayments or cash on hand to fund a repaving project upfront, consider simple repairs rather than redoing it. HomeAdvisor reports that basic repairs start as low as $300.

Best driveway paving or repaving financing options

If driveway paving financing sounds like the best path forward, you have multiple options. Personal loans and loans that lean on your home equity are solid strategies. You may also be able to secure a 0% introductory APR via direct financing through the driveway company.

Personal loans

Personal loans are a standard method for homeowners to add or repave a driveway. Lenders may advertise home improvement loans when you’re looking for driveway paving financing, but it’s all just marketing. These loans function like any other personal loan.

Most personal loans are unsecured, which means no asset serves as collateral for the loan. This makes the loan riskier for the lender, so interest rates are often higher than for a secured loan. You might also need to pay application or origination fees to start the loan.

The application process for a personal loan is easy, and borrowers can get the proceeds within a few days. In some cases, you can get the funds on the same day.

Not sure where to start? We’ve researched the best personal loans for excellent, good, fair, and thin (i.e., little to no) credit to help you narrow down financing options for your driveway project. 

LenderBest forKey features
LightStreamExcellent creditFixed-rate loans starting at 8.99% APR with autopay and excellent credit.

Funds available as soon as the same day.

Minimum credit score of 660.
SoFiGood creditFixed rates as low as 8.99% with all discounts.

Loans as large as $100,000 available.

Minimum credit score of 680.
UpgradeFair creditFixed rates starting at 8.24% APR.

Check rates without hurting your credit score.

Minimum credit score of 580.
UpstartThin creditTypical rates are between 6.70% and 35.99% APR.

Get funds as fast as 1 business day.

Minimum credit score of 300 in most states.

Best for excellent credit: LightStream

Editorial rating: 4.8 out of 5

  • Rate Beat program: Will beat a competitor’s offer by 0.10% APR if approved for a lower rate elsewhere
  • Unique satisfaction guarantee: Borrowers who are not satisfied with their loan experience can get a $100 refund
  • Loan amounts: $5,000 – $100,000

The APR on specific LightStream home improvement loans—including personal loans for driveway repaving—can be 8.99% with excellent credit. That APR could be worth it with no origination fees or prepayment penalties

Borrowers with high credit scores should start with LightStream when searching for a home improvement loan. If you have a good credit history to back you up, you can cover the cost of driveway repaving with a LightStream loan (loans go as high as $100,000) and get funding the same day.

Many personal loan terms run between two and seven years, but LightStream will give you 12 years to repay your loan. You’ll pay more in interest over the life of the loan, but this is an effective strategy to keep monthly payments low.

  • Credit score category: Excellent (660+)
  • Soft credit pull to check rates? No
  • Deposit time: Same-day funding available
  • Origination fee: N/A
  • Late fee: N/A
  • Rates (APR): Starting at 8.99%
  • Repayment terms: 2 – 12 years

Best for good credit: SoFi

Editorial rating: 5 out of 5

  • Unemployment protection allows pausing loan payments in case of job loss
  • Fast, easy application: Get a decision in minutes
  • Loan amounts: $5,000 – $100,000

If you have a good credit score, you’ll likely qualify for a home improvement loan from SoFi for driveway paving financing. SoFi offers personal loans with no fees or collateral required.

The application process is fast—you can get your rate in as little as 60 seconds—and the funding is swift too, often available the same day. SoFi also offers unemployment protection: If you lose your job, SoFi will work with you to modify payments and land a new gig.

  • Credit score category: Good
  • Soft credit pull to check rates? Yes
  • Deposit time: Same-day funding available
  • Origination fee: 0% to 6%
  • Late fee: None
  • Rates (APR): 8.99% – 23.42%
  • Repayment terms: 2 – 7 years

Best for fair credit: Upgrade

Editorial rating: 4.9 out of 5

  • Credit health tool to monitor your credit score and get personalized recommendations
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 – $50,000
  • 15-day grace period before late fee is assessed

Fair-credit borrowers looking for driveway financing might have a better shot with Upgrade. Just don’t expect the 8.24% APR if your credit score hovers around 580. APRs go as high as 35.97% for home improvement loans at Upgrade.

Watch out for the fees. Upgrade doesn’t charge prepayment penalties, but every loan comes with an origination fee, ranging from 1.85% to 8.99%—deducted from the initial loan proceeds.

We still like Upgrade, especially because the platform offers flexible loan options. After getting approved, Upgrade makes it easy to see how different loan terms and amounts affect your monthly payments.

  • Credit score category: Fair (560+)
  • Soft credit pull to check rates? Yes
  • Deposit time: Within 1 day of verification
  • Origination fee: 1.85% – 8.99%
  • Late fee: Up to $10 for payments not received within 15 days of the due date
  • Rates (APR): Starting at 8.24%
  • Repayment terms: 2 – 7 years

Best for thin credit: Upstart

Editorial rating: 4.8 out of 5

  • Uses artificial intelligence to provide competitive rates based on unique creditworthiness
  • Checking your rate won’t affect your credit score
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 – $50,000

If you have bad credit—or no credit history—you aren’t out of options. Upstart partners with other lenders to offer personal loans, including home improvement loans, to people with all financial backgrounds.

Instead of relying primarily on credit history, Upstart also considers factors such as education and work history when reviewing your application.

Bad-credit borrowers should prepare to pay a high APR of up to 35.99% and an origination fee as high as 10%. Upstart may also offer a lower loan amount than you applied for, so you might need to come up with the rest of your driveway financing elsewhere.

  • Credit score category: Thin or bad
  • Soft credit pull to check rates? Yes
  • Deposit time: Within 1 business day of signing (99% of loans)
  • Origination fee: Up to 10%
  • Late fee: $15 or 5% of the past due amount, whichever is greater
  • Rates (APR): Starting at 6.70%
  • Repayment terms: 3 or 5 years
Personal loan interest rates & fees

Interest rates, loan terms, and additional fees can affect the total cost of a personal loan. Interest rates can vary from 5% to 36%, and loan terms (the number of years to repay the loan) are often two to seven years—but may go as long as 12 years.

Here’s how these two factors impact the cost of your loan:

  • Interest rate: Like any loan with interest, you’ll make payments on not just the amount borrowed (the principal) but the interest accrued on the remaining balance.
  • Loan term: By opting for a shorter loan term, you’ll have larger monthly payments, but you’ll pay less in interest over the life of the loan. Stretching out your payments over additional years can increase how much you spend.

Let’s look at an example to see how interest and loan terms can affect your overall total. The amounts below reflect an initial loan of $5,000:

Interest rateLoan termTotal loan cost
5%2 years$5,265
5%4 years$5,527
5%7 years$5,936
15%2 years$5,818
15%4 years$6,679
15%7 years$8,105
35%2 years$7,022
35%4 years$9,353
35%7 years$13,452

Lenders may also charge origination fees ranging from 0% (no fee) to 10% of the loan amount. These are often deducted from your total loan amount.

For example, an origination fee of 8% on a $10,000 loan means you’d pay $800 just to get the loan. Many lenders will deduct this from your loan amount: You’d get $9,200, but you’d have to pay back $10,000 plus interest.

Borrowers with credit scores above 720 (excellent) have the best options when choosing lenders and tend to get the most competitive rates and loan terms—and often no fees. Good or excellent credit makes a personal loan a much more viable option for driveway financing.

Can you use home equity for driveway financing?

Personal loans aren’t your only option for driveway paving financing. Homeowners can also borrow against the equity they have built up in their homes to cover the cost.

You have two primary options for your home equity: a home equity loan or a home equity line of credit (HELOC).

Home equity loanHome equity line of credit
A home equity loan is secured by the equity you’ve built in your house as you pay down your balance, as long as your home’s value stays constant or increases.Your home’s equity also secures a home equity line of credit (HELOC). You can often get a credit line worth 80% to 90% of your home’s value minus what you owe on the house.
Get your home equity loan balance as a single lump sum. Then you’ll repay the loan over time in monthly payments plus interest.You’ll have access to an open line of credit. Borrow money as needed (up to a fixed amount), and make monthly payments, plus interest.
Think of a home equity loan as a second mortgage payment.Think of a HELOC as a credit card.

Note: A borrowing minimum may apply to a home equity loan or HELOC. If the minimum is more than you need for driveway repaving, it might make sense to consider another option.

HELOC and home equity loan interest rates & fees

Since the borrower’s home secures the debt obligation, lenders often charge a lower interest rate than an unsecured personal loan. Our research shows home equity loan rates were as low as 5.11%, and HELOC rates were as low as 5.63%, in September 2022, but that can increase with Federal Reserve interest-rate hikes.

Comparing a home equity loan to a personal loan is simple because both involve lump sums and often fixed interest rates. 

For instance, let’s look at the total cost of a personal loan versus the total cost of a home equity loan when the amount and repayment period are the same—but the interest rates differ.

Personal loanHome equity loan
Loan term5 years5 years
Interest rate8.99%5.11%
Total loan cost$12,452$11,353

Like credit cards, home equity lines of credit have variable rates, and you can continue to borrow more over time. This makes it harder to compare the cost of HELOCs to personal loans.

Home equity lines of credit tend to have lower interest rates than personal loans. Still, their potentially longer repayment terms, variable interest rates, and the easy temptation to overspend could make them more expensive in the long run if you’re not careful.

As with personal loans, home equity loans and HELOCs may have origination fees and closing costs, although specific lenders don’t charge these fees or may waive them for current customers.

In both cases, you’re putting your home up as collateral, so you must stay on top of payments. The lender can foreclose on your home if you can’t make the payment on your home equity loan or HELOC.

>> Read more: Best home equity loans & Best HELOC rates

The cheapest option is cash

Paying cash for your driveway repaving is the cheapest option because you don’t have to worry about origination fees or interest on a loan.

The only problem? It can be hard to come up with the money to cover the project, especially if you live in an area with higher labor rates or have a long—and thus more expensive to repave—driveway.

Looking for ways to save cash for home renovation projects such as driveway repaving? Here are a few tips: 

  • Open a savings account for home renovations: When you have all your money in a single account, it can take time to track savings toward different goals. By stashing cash in a dedicated fund for home renovations and repairs, you won’t be tempted to spend it on vacations or a new car.
  • Look for high-interest accounts only: When shopping for a new savings account, look for options labeled “high-interest” or “high-yield.” Many of these will be online banks—and will likely pay interest well above the national average.
  • Make home renovations a line item in your budget: If you’re struggling to save for home repairs, add them to your monthly budget. Move the budgeted amount to your savings account each month. Even if you’re only putting $50 or $100 a month aside, it’ll add up.

— Have the cash on hand to fund your driveway project? Ask the contractor whether they accept credit cards. If you have a cash-back credit card, you can earn decent money by paying with plastic. Just pay off the balance as soon as it processes to avoid interest.

Driveway company financing

You might be able to secure driveway repaving financing from the company doing the work. In these cases, the companies might advertise an attractive promotion, such as 0% APR for several months.

Bear in mind that the 0% APR is often for an introductory period only. Once this promotional period ends, any unpaid balance will start to accrue interest. In many cases, it could be 20% or more, so ensure you understand the exact terms of the offer.

If you can pay off the loan during the promotional period, a direct loan from the driveway company could be your best driveway financing option.

Does it make sense to finance a driveway?

Taking on debt is always a decision to consider, no matter how big or small the loan. For many borrowers, financing driveway repairs or repaving makes sense. Here are a few scenarios where it might be the right call for you:

You’re preparing to list your home

Driveways have a massive impact on the curb appeal of your house. If yours is in rough shape, you may have trouble tempting prospective buyers to give your home the time of day.

Consider financing the repaving and repaying the loan after the house sells.

Your driveway is in rough shape

Driveways don’t last forever, whether asphalt, concrete, brick, or cobblestone. A few cracks don’t warrant a complete repaving job, but you may need to tackle more significant issues by redoing your driveway. Financing can make the project feasible.

You don’t want to spend the cash

Even if you could afford to repave your driveway out of pocket, it might not be the wisest decision.

For instance, having enough in an emergency fund to cover six months of expenses is smart. If you have to dip into those savings to cover the repaving costs, a loan might be the better route as long as your cash flow allows you to meet the payment schedule and terms.

You’re trying to improve your credit score

Improving your credit score is a double-edged sword. You need good credit to get approved for many loan types, but you need loans to establish good credit.

You can build your credit score with other strategies, such as credit builder loans and secured credit cards. A small, manageable personal loan for home improvements could help you improve the resale value of your home and boost your credit score.

How much more expensive is financing vs. cash?

Paying for driveway repaving in cash is cheaper than taking out a personal loan, even if that loan has no origination fees. Why? Because with a loan, you’ll pay interest on top of the principal balance.

You can use our personal loan calculator to see how much a loan will cost you by the time you’ve paid it off, or just check out these examples to see how much more expensive driveway financing can be compared to cash:

  • Small driveway financing amount, high interest rate, longer loan term: If you take out a $4,000 loan at 30% interest over seven years, you’ll pay $9,607 over the life of the loan with monthly payments of $114. This includes:
    • $4,000 loan amount
    • $5,607 in interest charges
  • Moderate driveway financing amount, moderate interest rate, moderate loan term: If you take out a $7,000 loan at 20% interest over five years, you’ll pay $11,127 over the life of the loan with monthly payments of $185. This includes:
    • $7,000 loan amount
    • $4,127 in interest charges
  • Large driveway financing amount, low interest rate, short loan term: If you take out a $10,000 loan at 10% interest over two years, you’ll pay $11,075 over the life of the loan with monthly payments of $461. This includes:
    • $10,000 loan amount
    • $1,075 in interest charges

Note: These examples only explore personal loans and do not factor in potential fees, including origination and late fees. Home equity loans and HELOCs will also be more expensive than cash (and come with their own risks).

Financing from a driveway company could be more affordable if there are no fees and you pay off the loan during a 0% APR introductory period.

Are there financial benefits if I improve my home with a new or repaved driveway?

In some cases, you might experience financial benefits from improving your home with a new or repaved driveway, including:

Higher offers

If you’re selling your home, you may get higher offers from buyers—or at least sell your home faster—if you redo your driveway. HomeAdvisor suggests repaving could increase your property value by 5% to 10% if your driveway is in poor shape.

Tax deductions

Under current regulations, the IRS allows you to deduct interest on a home equity loan or home equity line of credit if you use the loan to “buy, build, or substantially improve” your home. Check with an accountant to determine whether your driveway project qualifies.

Of course, this will only benefit you if you itemize your deductions. Given the standard deduction for 2023 is $13,850 for single filers and $27,700 for married couples filing jointly, many may prefer the standard deduction.

Credit score improvement

Whether you take out a personal loan, home equity loan, or even financing from the driveway company, it could boost your credit score.

You might see an initial drop in your score thanks to the hard inquiry and the decrease in the average age of your credit, but on-time payments and a more diverse credit mix could help increase your score.

Weigh your options

Repaving your driveway can boost your home’s curb appeal and prevent potential damage to your car’s tires. But is it worth the cost?

Before moving forward with any type of financing, ask yourself these questions:

  1. Do you need to repave? Repaving your driveway may not always be required. In cases of less significant wear and tear, simpler repairs might suffice. This could save money on labor and materials.
  2. Does cash make sense? Analyze your finances to see whether you have enough savings to cover the cost. Even if you have the money on hand, ensure you’ll have enough left over to cover emergency expenses or other savings goals.
  3. Can you afford financing? If cash isn’t an option, financing is the way forward. Just remember the total cost of a loan, including interest and fees. Ensure you’re comfortable with the monthly payment—but also stay away from high-interest loans that cost more in the long run.
  4. Which driveway financing option is right for you? With that total loan cost in mind, compare your options. Personal loans may cost more, but home equity financing has higher risks. Direct funding from driveway companies could save you money if you can pay off the loan during a 0% APR period.

Recap of driveway paving or repaving finance options

Have you determined a personal loan is your best driveway financing option? We analyzed various personal loan companies to determine the best options for borrowers with excellent, fair, thin, and good credit.

Based on your score, start your search with one of these companies: 

LenderLoan typeBest forRates (APR)
LightStreamPersonal loanExcellent credit8.99%22.74% with autopay and excellent credit
SoFiPersonal loanGood credit8.99% – 23.43% with all discounts
UpgradePersonal loanFair credit8.24%35.97%
UpstartPersonal loanThin credit6.70% – 35.99%