The best personal loans has the peer-to-peer trailblazer, Lending Club, high in its list as one of the top loans out there. Despite being peer-to-peer this loan can be applied for online with an approval within minutes. This is a loan where investors can put money into loans to get a return, allowing them to make money while you get your debts paid off.
Having facilitated nearly $50 billion in loans to over 2.5 million people, this is the biggest online lender for personal loans in the US. This is likely thanks to the debt consolidation service that can pay-off multiple creditor automatically to help borrowers consolidate their debts in one loan easily.
Lending Club is a rare breed when it comes to co-signing as it will allow this when it comes to applications. That means for those with a poor credit rating they have the chance to pay off debt and improve their rating by using another person's good rating as a sort of reassurance.
The hardship plan is a flexible system that allows those who may struggle to make payment work out a flexible plan which works for them.
Could this be the loan you were looking for? Read on to find out everything you need to know about Lending Club personal loans.
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Cost: How much does Lending Club charge?
APR variable: 5.99 - 34.99%
Loan range: $500 - $40,000
Min credit score: 600
Term: 36 - 60 months
- Minimum APR: 5.99%
- Maximum APR: 34.99%
Lending Club loans have a widely varied APR since this can be applied for by lots of people so the rate will change depending on your situation. Those who have a poor credit score or very little credit history, for example, may pay a higher rate than those with a long history of good repayments.
Rates start at a decent and competitive 5.99% but climb to a massive 34.99% making this a potentially risky loan for some. The loan can be repaid in three to five years with the faster option meaning a lower rate.
Lending Club Personal Loans review: Debt consolidation
- Pay off up to 12 creditors at once
- Minimum credit score of 600
Lending Club is uniquely positioned to offer a super simple debt consolidation service. This is because it is able to pay off up to 12 creditors as part of one loan. That means if you have a lot of credit card debts, for example, this can pay them all off at once so you only have one loan to pay off. You may even end up with a better rate.
This balance transfer loan is a relatively new offering, having started in June 2019. As such there may still be teething problems but, initially, it seems to work well as a very useful way to simplify debt consolidation. You can find out more in our Lending Club debt consolidation review.
Lending Club Personal Loans review: Requirements
- Three year credit history
- Debt-to-income ratio of 40%
Lending Club won't just base it's loan eligibility on the credit score, which is a relatively low 600 and better than the likes of Marcus by Goldman Sachs and SoFi. Instead it builds a borrower profile which lenders can invest in with varying levels of APR depending on how much of a risk that person appears to be.
That means you will need a minimum of three years of credit history in order to get on the loan ladder here. It also means you'll need to have a debt-to-income (DTI) ratio of no more than 40%. That means you'll need to be bringing in that much more than is being spent each month.
Another option is to go for a co-sign.
Lending Club Personal Loans review: Co-sign loans
- Credit score as low as 540
- Under 35% DTI
For those with a lower credit score and debt-to-income (DTI) ratio than the required minimum 600 and 40% respectively, there is the option to co-sign. This is where you go in on the loan with another person who has a better rating than you, making you more reliable as a loan option.
To qualify for this loan option at least one of the borrowers needs a credit rating of 600 or above while the other must be above 540 at a minimum.
For the DTI number this is a combined score for both signers. The total DTI score for both must be less than 35% to qualify for a loan.
Lending Club Personal Loans review: Hardship loan
- Interest only payments
- Three months at a time
For those struggling with their loan and payments there is an option to take advantage of some flexibility that Lending Club offers. This is the ability to change payment options for a limited time while struggling.
So if you were to get laid off from your job, or struggle with a big outgoing for a while, then this option could help see you through the worst of that. It means for a three month period your repayments are put on hold and you only make interest payments. This will keep the amount you owe at one fixed level so it doesn't increase while you get yourself sorted to no longer be behind payments again.
Lending Club Personal Loans review: Fees
- 5% late fee
- 1 - 6% origination fee
Lending Club charges some fees including origination, late and checking fees. That origination fee is paid at the start and varies depending on your profile grading, which varies based on lots of factors including credit score, DTI and more. That origination rate is between one and six percent.
Late fees also apply at the greater of either $15 or 5% which applies to payment that are late. Late means over 15-days past due, if you're within that grace period you won't have to pay.
If you go for autopay you won't get a discount but then you also won't have to pay a fee. However, if you opt to by by check you will have to pay a pretty step fee of $7 as a processing fee.
The good news is that there is no early repayment fee so you can pay off the entire debt at once if you're lucky enough to find yourself able to do so.
Lending Club Personal Loans review: What users say
- JD Power 3-star rating
- Total points of 848
Lending Club features high up in the 2019 JD Power Personal Loan Satisfaction Study which looked at customer feedback. A decent three stars out of five and 848 points out of 1,000 places this in the top seven, not including the military only options.
Prosper received three stars across the categories which are: interaction, billing and payment, loan offerings and terms, plus application and approval process.
Lending Club Personal Loans review: Verdict
Lending Club was the peer-to-peer payments pioneer and as such is still one of the biggest and most used personal loan options in the US. Great starting rates make this one for those with good credit ratings while flexible payment plans and co-signing also allow those with debt troubles to take a loan.
The debt consolidation system makes paying off debts a simple process while the payment flexibility takes the pressure off, even if you may not be able to pay. For those that don't mind the fees and can afford potentially high rates this is a great way to borrow without going to the banks.