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Sometimes, you just need to borrow a bit of money. Whether you need to cover an unexpected expense, get a head start on a project, or refinance credit card debt, a personal loan can get you the money you need.
Two leading online personal loan lenders are SoFi and Marcus by Goldman Sachs. Both offer low-cost loans with a lot of flexibility.
This comparison will look at each lenders’ offerings and help you decide which is right for you.
In this review:
SoFi vs Marcus: at a glance
|Rates (APR)||5.99% – 21.20%||6.99% – 19.99%|
|Loan Amounts||$5,000 – $100,000||$3,500 – $40,000|
|Term Lengths||24 – 84 months||36 – 72 months|
|Minimum Credit Score||660||660|
SoFi vs Marcus: Which is right for you?
Originally known for student loan refinancing, SoFi now offers other financial services that compete with the likes of Marcus, the online consumer arm of Goldman Sachs.
SoFi and Marcus offer similar personal loans. Neither charges late fees, prepayment penalties, or other pricy fees, and both have competitive rates. You can read more about each lender in our SoFi Personal Loans Review and our Marcus Personal Loans Review.
Here are a few situations where one lender may be a better choice than the other.
- If you have great credit
- If you have fair credit
- If you earn less than $40,000
- If you want to borrow a low amount
- If you want to borrow a large amount
- If you need a longer repayment term
- If you wouldn’t be able to make payments if you lost your job
- If you need money quickly
If you have great credit
If you have a good-to-great credit score, a SoFi loan is probably your best bet. You can borrow a lot of money from SoFi in a short amount of time and pay low interest rates.
SoFi’s minimum credit score is 660, so check your credit report and make sure your score meets that requirement before beginning the loan application process. If your credit score exceeds that minimum, you could get a great rate on a SoFi loan.
If you have fair credit
If you need a personal loan for fair credit, Marcus comes out ahead. Similar to SoFi, Marcus has a minimum credit score requirement of 660.
But if you’re close to that minimum, Marcus may look more positively on your creditworthiness and is more likely to give you good terms than SoFi.
If you earn less than $40,000
Marcus advertises that you may be denied a loan if you cannot show an annual income greater than $40,000. Marcus is also sensitive to lending to people with a high debt-to-income ratio.
SoFi does not post a minimum income requirement, so it’s possible you may still be denied, but that will likely depend on your credit and outstanding debt.
If you want to borrow less than $5,000
Sometimes, you don’t need to borrow a huge amount of money. If you’re looking to borrow less than $5,000, you’ll want to apply with Marcus.
SoFi has a minimum loan amount of $5,000, while Marcus will let you borrow as little as $3,500 at a time.
If you want to borrow more than $40,000
SoFi loans can go up to $100,000, while Marcus will only let you borrow $40,000 at a time. So you’ll have to use SoFi if you want to borrow more than $40,000 in one go.
If you need a longer repayment term
When you get a personal loan, you can choose the loan’s term, or the amount of time you’ll have to repay.
The longer the loan’s term, the lower your minimum monthly payment will be. Having a lower monthly payment means more flexibility in your monthly budget.
SoFi lets you borrow money for up to 84 months, and Marcus offers terms as long as 72 months.
If you wouldn’t be able to make payments if you lost your job
In case you wouldn’t be able to make loan payments without income from your job, SoFi offers a loan forbearance program that can reduce some of the stress.
If you lose your job through no fault of your own and your loans are in good standing, you can apply for up to 12 months of SoFi Unemployment Protection. It’ll pause your payments for three-month increments for a total of up to 12 months while you look for a new job.
Interest will continue to accrue during forbearance, but you will not be required to make payments. That means you don’t have to worry about late or missed payments because of your lost income.
If you need money quickly
If you’re applying for a personal loan because you have an immediate need for cash, Marcus is the lender for you. Like SoFi, you can apply online, but Marcus can approve and fund your loan directly into your bank account in one to four business days.
Being able to get money quickly is important when you’re trying to cover an unexpected expense or need some extra cash to get started on a project.
If you’d like to compare additional options, you can check out our guide to the best personal loans.
Author: TJ Porter