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Started in 2012, Upstart is a direct-to-consumer online lending platform that utilizes the power of machine learning and artificial intelligence to streamline the loan pricing and funding process. It offers loans ranging from $1,000 up to $50,000, with interest rates as high as 29.99%, paid over three- or five-year.1,2
The company was established by former Google employees with a keen focus on technology, and it has grown into a major player in the online lending sphere. To date, Upstart has funded over $2 billion in loans, but the company’s impressive numbers don’t mean it’s the right fit for all borrowers.
Borrowers should check out some Upstart competitors before signing on the dotted line, to ensure they are getting the most affordable loan. If you’re trying to find the best personal loan for your needs, check out the Upstart alternatives below.
On this page:
Upstart Alternatives for Personal Loans
Personal Loan Alternative Options
9.99% – 35.99%
$2,000 – $25,000
LendingPoint is a personal loan lender offering funds to those with fair credit. To date, the company has loaned more than $1.8 billion throughout the United States. Checking your payment options does not impact your credit score and a decision can be made in a few seconds.
- Credit score category: Fair, bad
- Soft credit pull to check rates: Yes
- Deposit time: As soon as the next day
- Origination fee: 0% – 6%
- Late fee: $30 after being 15 days late
- Repayment terms: 24 – 48 months
3.49% – 19.99%
$5,000 – $100,000
LightStream, a division of SunTrust Bank, offers personal loans online. There are no origination fees with a LightStream personal loan, and credit evaluations look at assets, credit history, income, and payment history. Unlike Upstart, LightStream focuses on providing funds to those with excellent or really good credit scores. This is a great option for those that can meet the minimum credit score and other eligibility requirements.
- Credit score category: Excellent, good
- Soft credit pull to check rates: Not available
- Deposit time: As soon as the same day
- Origination fee: 0%
- Late fee: None
- Discounts: 0.50% interest rate reduction for enrolling in autopay
- Repayment terms: 24 – 144 months
Additional Alternatives to Upstart
To start, there are many other personal loans for borrowers with fair credit that you may want to consider. Furthermore, if you have a great credit score, you may be able to qualify for a lower rate with one of the best personal loan companies.
For homeowners, a home equity loan or home equity line of credit may prove more beneficial in terms of the cost for borrowing than an Upstart personal loan. This is because interest rates for home equity products are often in the single digits, unlike Upstart loans, which can be as high as 29.99%2.
A five-year loan for $15,000 from Upstart with a 15% interest rate would have a monthly payment of $357 (not including the origination fee) and accrue a total of $6,411 in interest. A home equity loan in the same amount with an interest rate of 7% means a monthly payment of $297 and a total interest of $2,821 over the life of the loan.
Additionally, credit cards may be an alternative to an Upstart personal loan, especially when interest rates are lower than offered through the online lender. A credit card with an interest rate of 12.99% with a balance of $15,000 means a monthly payment of $341 and a total interest of $5,473 paid over five years.
The loan or credit card option selected by a borrower should be evaluated based on the total cost components, including the interest rate and any origination fees. Because credit cards and home equity loans may have lower interest rates than an Upstart personal loan, and potentially no origination fee, these options may make more sense.
Recap of Upstart Alternatives
|Lender||Rates (APR)||Loan Amounts||Credit Score|
|LendingPoint||9.99% – 35.99%||$2,000 – $25,000||585+|
|LightStream||3.49% – 19.99%||$5,000 – $100,000||660+|
1 Your loan amount will be determined based on your credit, income, and certain other information provided in your loan application. Not all applicants will qualify for the full amount. Loans are not available in West Virginia or Iowa. The minimum loan amount in MA is $7,000. The minimum loan amount in Ohio is $6,000. The minimum loan amount in NM is $5100. The minimum loan amount in GA is $3,100.
2 The full range of available rates varies by state. The average 3-year loan offered across all lenders using the Upstart platform will have an APR of 15% and 36 monthly payments of $33 per $1,000 borrowed. There is no down payment and no prepayment penalty. Average APR is calculated based on 3-year rates offered in the last 1 month. Your APR will be determined based on your credit, income, and certain other information provided in your loan application. Not all applicants will be approved.
Author: Melissa Horton