In 2018, LendEDU revamped our ratings and reviews process to analyze lenders in a more in-depth and detailed way. Along with this new process, we will be announcing the highest rated lenders each quarter in multiple categories.
This article will take a look at the top personal loan lenders of the third quarter of 2018.
For reference, LendEDU’s editorial team does not receive direction from any of the lenders nor do we publish favorable or unfavorable reviews based on compensation we may receive from these lenders. The editorial team is tasked with providing accurate and fact-based analysis of each lender and is not rewarded for favorable or unfavorable reviews.
Personal Loan Lender Rating Methodology
Personal Loan rankings are based on the following criteria: competitiveness of interest rates, availability of soft-credit check, prepayment and origination fees, approval rates and submit to fund time, quality of customer service, and benefits offered to borrowers.
In addition, each personal loan product is rated based on the lender’s target customer credit rating. Each product was categorized as either for “Above Average Credit”, “Average Credit”, or “Below Average Credit”. Lenders were rated relative to other lenders’ offerings in their credit rating category.
To see a more in-depth explanation of the criteria used for these rankings, visit our Ratings & Methodology page.
See the top personal loan lenders for Q3 2018 in each category below:
Above Average Credit or Prime Lenders
#1 – SoFi
No fees, no catch. Since the inception of SoFi personal loans in 2015, the lender has helped thousands of borrowers save money. With its large borrowing limits, competitive rates, and community benefits, SoFi has become one of the leaders in the personal loan space.
#2 – LightStream
LightStream is the online consumer lending division of SunTrust Bank. LightStream offers a revolutionary loan product that allows consumers to easily mold the loan to their desires. The lender offers a unique feature of rate matching that no other lender offers in the personal loan industry.
#3 – Citizens Bank
Citizens Bank allows consumers to get personalized rates in less than two minutes. The bank offers flexible repayment terms that enable consumers to tailor their repayment plans to best suits their needs. Citizens Bank’s personal loan calculator helps potential borrowers plan ahead for their financial future before filling out the application.
#4 – Best Egg
Since its founding in 2014, Best Egg has funded over $5 billion in personal loans and has helped over 350,000 consumers get their finances in order. The lender has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and offers a hassle-free application process for consumers.
#5 – Prosper
Prosper was founded in 2005 as the first peer-to-peer lender in the United States. Since its founding, Prosper has helped over 770,000 people fund more than $12 billion in loans. Peer-to-peer lending allows individuals to receive money from other consumers and all loans are serviced in-house by Prosper.
Average Credit or Near-Prime Lenders
#1 – Marcus by Goldman Sachs
“No fees, ever.” That is the creed of Marcus by Goldman Sachs – a newcomer to the personal loan industry. In addition to having no fees, Marcus’ on-time payment rewards puts the lender on top of the “Average Credit” rankings.
#2 – Upgrade
Upgrade aims to help consumers build their financial future by lowering costs and unlocking the potential of their credit. Upgrade’s intuitive customer service helps consumers make responsible financial decisions so they are successful in repayment.
#3 – Payoff
Payoff is a unique lender that helps their consumers prosper financially. The lender is comprised of not only financial experts, but also clinical psychologists and neuroscientists that help the company understand the mental burden of debt on consumers.
#4 – LendingClub
LendingClub has transformed the personal loan experience by perfecting peer-to-peer lending. The lender has a strong belief that innovative and creative solutions lead to a more satisfying borrowing experience. The availability of a joint application is just one feature of LendingClub’s top notch personal loan product that no other lender can offer.
#5 – Upstart
Upstart is truly a game changer in the personal loan space. FICO-based models are a thing of the past with Upstart as its machine learning borrowing process creates the ultimate application experience.
Below Average Credit or Sub-Prime Lenders
#1 – Avant
Avant is a Chicago-based company that offers fast moving solutions to complex problems. Avant has recently opened a branch in Tennessee and has helped over 600,000 consumers with its transparent personal loan product. Avant’s extraordinary low rates for sub-prime personal loans makes the lender the cream of the crop in the market.
#2 – OppLoans
OppLoans is more than a payday loan company – it is a character-driven personal loan lender that allows a modern approach to financing and believes all borrowers deserve better than a typical payday loan. With its friendly customer service and OppU Courses, OppLoans truly cares about the customer experience.
#3 – LendUp
LendUp is here to shake up the payday loan marketplace. Instead of requiring good credit for its consumers, LendUp is working to seek a path to create good credit. The LendUp Ladder encourages and rewards consumers for on-time payments to gain points to access benefits.
#4 – RISE
RISE is helping consumers get their finances back on track and is changing the way they can borrow money. RISE’s Free Credit Score Plus tool allows consumers to know exactly where they stand and the lender also provides financial tips and tools to ensure customer success.
#5 – Mariner Finance
Mariner Finance is adding a personal touch to personal loans. Mariner stands out with its hands-on customer service experience and the opportunity for borrowers to add a cosigner to applications.
Author: Tom Flynn (Community Manager)
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