Trying to find the best installment loan may feel overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right information and some careful planning, you can choose the best installment loan for you and your goals.
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Installment loans are loans that are paid back in frequent, scheduled payments that the borrower(s) agree to repay over time in installments— hence the name — usually on a monthly basis. Think mortgages and car loans, and you’ll be on the right track, as these are both common types of installment loans. These loans can be a safer alternative to credit cards and payday loans and may even be used for consolidating personal debt under one loan. While it is most common for installment loans to have fixed rates—meaning you pay the same amount during each payment cycle—there are some exceptions. If you’re unfamiliar with installment loans or simply need a refresher, then we’ve got you covered. With this guide, you will be able to determine the best low interest installment loan for you.
Best Installment Loans of 2020
- Best Online Installment Loan: Lending Club
- Best Marketplace: PersonalLoans.com
- Best for Bad Credit: Avant
- Best Low Interest Installment Loans: Prosper
- Best Installment Loan with Offices: OneMain
- Best Customer Service: Best Egg
- Best Online Interface: LightStream
Compare Installment Loan Companies and Apply Online
We wanted to see how our top pick lenders for the best installment loans compared to each other. Below, you’ll find a comparison table of these lenders showing key facts about each one. Within this table, you can compare each of our picks based on the best APR, loan term ranges, minimum loan amounts, and the maximum loan amounts. With this information, you can determine the best lender for the loan you want.
The largest online lender for personal loans within the United States, LendingClub works primarily with those who have a solid credit history and rating. This company has received recognition from numerous prestigious organizations, including The Economist. It requires a minimum credit history of three years with an income-to-debt ratio no greater than 39%. Many companies in this business, as you might expect, try to structure themselves in such a way as to reduce the odds of working with borrowers who will have difficulty paying their installments. While this may seem self-serving, it actually protects the borrowers as well as the lender. If the borrower cannot keep up with their payments, everyone loses.
PersonalLoans.com works as a knowledgeable and skilled connector between borrowers and lenders but is not a lender themselves. The company will provide you with a short digital form to fill out and then take the information you provided and use it to find the best lender and loan for your needs for which you are eligible. If you’re overwhelmed by the sheer number of lenders out there and want an expert to find the best match for you, then PersonalLoans.com is a safe bet. Experienced agents will work with your information to pair you with the best loan that it can find for your situation. With this unique, personalized approach, PersonalLoans.com has served many satisfied customers over the past 21 years. Whether you have good credit, bad credit, or you don’t know your credit score, these professionals will find the lender you need.
Featured in such well-known publications as the Wall Street Journal, Avant seeks to make obtaining a personal installment loan as easy for you as possible. Not only does it want to remove the red tape and hassle for you, but one of the company’s stated goals is to lower the cost of borrowing for customers. Avant reports an impressive customer satisfaction of 90% and makes comprehensive communication with their borrowers a priority. Are you dealing with unexpected medical bills? Need to see your options for consolidating your credit card debt? Are you looking to finance that long-put-off home project? No matter the hardship you face, the hardworking folks at Avant are ready to help you succeed. With a motto of “transparent and convenient personal loans,” you can count on Avant to help you get the finances you need for the costs you have.
Prosper focuses on low interest installment loans and was the very first peer-to-peer digital lending marketplace in the United States. Prosper has made it into the spotlight with such big names as NPR, Reuters and The Wallstreet Journal. Prosper prides itself on providing low interest installment loans to those who need them. With a business presence that started in 2005, you can trust it to be thoroughly grounded in the modern world of finance and all of the cutting-edge tools that it provides. A model of the era, Prosper pairs borrowers with investors and serves as the facilitator and handler of all loan services. Their company slogan, “accountability at all levels drive results,” is a testament to its determination to make every loan a positive experience for borrowers and investors alike. In the 14 years that they’ve been in business, Prosper has already helped over 960,000 borrowers obtain loans.
A company with a robust history, OneMain has been in the lending business for the past century. The company boasts putting the borrower first and maintaining transparency with its loans. While the application process starts online, it will quickly connect you with one of its local offices and have a lending agent meet with you in person before you commit to the loan. OneMain prides itself on looking past bad credit and seeing the person behind the loan application — an idea that can feel rare in the modern business world. Whether you have bad credit or simply prefer a lender that prioritizes human connection, OneMain is there for you. With a focus on clear terms for their loans and a strong emphasis on customer service, OneMain will be right there with you for every step of your financial journey.
With an emphasis on low interest installment loans, Lightstream seeks to have a mutually beneficial relationship with its borrowers. LightStream works primarily with borrowers who have good, established credit, and focuses upon making the lending process as painless as possible for customers. LightStream’s application system is designed for digital use, so borrowers can go through nearly the entire process right from their home computer or mobile device. Due to the company’s focus on customer satisfaction and ease of borrowing, LightStream is so confident in its mission that it provides a “$100 guarantee that your loan experience will be your best, ever.” If you have good credit and are seeking a low interest installment loan free of hassle and pain, then LightStream is the lender for you. Founded in 2004 as an “online consumer lending division of SunTrust Bank,” LightStream has the experience and backing to deliver on its promise.
At Best Egg, your time is precious and the company structures its work to reflect that. If approved, you can expect to receive your loan in as little as one business day after completing your loan application. To achieve this fast turnaround, Best Egg works hard to make the entire process as seamless and convenient for you as possible. Best Egg touts a customer satisfaction rating of 95% and has achieved an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Its goal is to get you the finances you need at a rate you can afford so that you can quit worrying about money and focus on enjoying your life. No matter your credit history and rating, the agents at Best Egg are there to help you get your finances in order and out of the way of your day-to-day living. At Best Egg, your goals are a top priority, and its staff wants to do everything that they can to help you realize them.
Best Installment Loans: Summed Up
|Best APR||Long Term||Minimum Loan||Maximum Loan|
|Best Egg||5.99%||0–60 Months||$2,000||$35,000|
When Should I Get An Installment Loan?
Some of the most well-known uses of installment loans are for buying homes and cars, but these are not the limit of what an installment loan can do for you. Personal installment loans are a type of installment loan that you, the borrower, can use for a wide variety of purposes. Whether you are looking to finance a family vacation, deal with unexpected medical bills or pay for a home improvement project, personal installment loans can provide you with the resources you need. While personal loans do tend to have higher interest rates than auto loans and mortgages, they can prove an essential tool for dealing with unexpected expenses.
Check Your Personal Loan Rates
Answer a few questions to see which personal loans you pre-qualify for. The process is quick and easy, and it will not impact your credit score.
The Bottom Line
At the end of the day, an installment loan is what you make of it. Sure, it has defined parameters built-in, but with the number of lenders available, and a little guidance, you can find the low interest installment loan that fits your income and financial needs. The best installment loans are going to be the ones that give you the finances you need, when you need them and without charging you more than your budget can handle. If you’re feeling hesitant, then remember that these companies only stay in business so long as they meet the needs of borrowers like you.