The Best Swimming Pool Loans and Financing

There is nothing better than a swimming pool when you are trying to beat the sticky wet humidity and scorching heat of the unforgiving summer sun. A personal loan can help you secure the funding you need to install your very own swimming pool for your backyard.

Before assigning a score, we research thousands of expert critique and real customer reviews to sift through the several lenders offering personal loans today.  Using our proprietary methodology, we perform an in-depth analysis of lenders offering personal loans to find the very best pool financing for 2020.

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    In this article

      The 5 best swimming pool loan providers of 2020

      Pool loan providers at a glance

      LenderAPRLoan TermMin. LoanMax. LoanSimpleScore
      Lightstream3.49%–20.49%24–144 months$5,000$100,0004.8/5
      Wells Fargo5.99%–24.49%12–84 months$3,000$100,0004.4/5
      SoFi5.99%–18.28%24–84 months$5,000$100,0004.8/5
      Navy Federal Credit Union7.49%–18%36–60 months$250$50,0004.2/5
      Upgrade7.99%–35.97%30–60 months$1,000$35,0003/5

      Best for expensive pool renovations – LightStream

      Through Lightstream, you get the power of Suntrust Bank for more bang for your buck.

      APR Range
      3.49%–20.49%
      Loan Amount
      $5,000-$100,000
      Term
      24–144 months
      SimpleScore
      4.8 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore LightStream 4.8
      Max APR 4
      Loan Size 5
      Terms 5
      Support 5
      Fees 5

      Year after year, Lightstream is repeatedly a winner at The Simple Dollar for low-interest loans without fees.With LightStream, you can enjoy no fees, and straightforward pricing with the interest rates and loan terms spelled out on the website. If you enroll in AutoPay, you can save yourself an extra 0.50% off regular rates. You can feel free to use the prepayment option without fear of penalty, and LightStream will even match your rates with its Rate Beat Program.

      LightStream Disclosure

      Your loan terms, including APR, may differ based on loan purpose, amount, term length, and your credit profile. Excellent credit is required to qualify for lowest rates. Rate is quoted with AutoPay discount. AutoPay discount is only available prior to loan funding. Rates without AutoPay may be higher. Subject to credit approval. Conditions and limitations apply. Advertised rates and terms are subject to change without notice.

      Payment example: Monthly payments for a $10,000 loan at 4.99% APR with a term of 3 years would result in 36 monthly payments of $299.66

      © 2020 Truist Financial Corporation. SunTrust, Truist, LightStream, the LightStream logo, and the SunTrust logo are service marks of Truist Financial Corporation. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Lending services provided by Truist Bank.

      Best for borrowers with low credit scores – Wells Fargo

      It pays to be a Wells Fargo customer when you need a personal loan.

      APR Range
      5.99%–24.49%
      Loan Amount
      $3,000-$100,000
      Term
      12–84 months
      SimpleScore
      3 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore Wells Fargo 3
      Max APR 2
      Loan Size 1
      Terms 3
      Support 4
      Fees 5

      When you need cash quickly, Wells Fargo won’t delay with fast processing on its competitive rates. Wells Fargo has no origination fees and no prepayment penalties, so repayment isn’t an expensive process, and you can make the most of your loan. There is an extra relationship discount of 0.25% for existing customers, dropping rates to as low as 5.74% for those who qualify.

      Best for borrowers with good credit – SoFi

      In the age of COVID-19, we especially appreciate that SoFi will pause your payments if you lose your job.

      APR Range
      5.99%–18.28%
      Loan Amount
      $5,000-$100,000
      Term
      24–84 months
      SimpleScore
      4.8 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore SoFi 4.8
      Max APR 4
      Loan Size 5
      Terms 5
      Support 5
      Fees 5

      Online application processing and live customer support make borrowing a breeze with SoFi if you have the rates to qualify. SoFi is proudly “100% fee-free,” which means you won’t pay any origination, prepayment or late fees. You can benefit from an additional 0.25% discount if you enroll in auto-payments, and you can enjoy the support of live customer service available even on weekends. Even better, these are unsecured loans, so you don’t need collateral to qualify.

      SoFi Disclosure

      Fixed rates from 5.99% APR to 18.28% APR (with AutoPay). SoFi rate ranges are current as of October 5, 2020 and are subject to change without notice. Not all rates and amounts available in all states. See Personal Loan eligibility details. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, to qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including evaluation of your credit worthiness, income, and other factors. See APR examples and terms. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.

      Best for competitive rates – Navy Federal Credit Union

      \asy repayment termsNavy Federal is a great pick when you are looking for a small-sized loan, but be ready to prove that military affiliation before you can apply. that make borrowing a lot easier, even if it isn’t necessarily cheaper.

      APR Range
      7.49%–18.00%
      Loan Amount
      $250-$50,000
      Term
      Up to 60 months
      SimpleScore
      4.2 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore Navy Federal Credit Union 4.2
      Max APR 5
      Loan Size 3
      Terms 4
      Support 4
      Fees 5

      This military lender focuses less on its profit and more on customer support for a stellar lending experience. Navy Federal skips the origination fees and prepayment penalties for fewer overall payments. In most cases, you can even benefit from same-day funding so you can get your pool started that much sooner. Just make sure that you are a member because loans are reserved exclusively for the military families that have joined this credit union.

      Most flexible repayment terms – Upgrade

      Upgrade may work with your poor credit, but you will pay handsomely for this opportunity.

      APR Range
      7.99%–35.97%
      Loan Amount
      $1,000-$35,000
      Term
      36–60 months
      SimpleScore
      3 / 5.0
      close
      SimpleScore Upgrade 3
      Max APR 2
      Loan Size 1
      Terms 3
      Support 4
      Fees 5

      Upgrade offers easy lending, but the rates are just average, and the fees are high if you have poor credit. Upgrade doesn’t take forever with its processing, with borrowers receiving payment as soon as the next day after approval. While there are no prepayment penalties, Upgrade does charge a steep origination fee that can run as high as 8% of the loan and is taken directly from the loan’s proceeds. This lender is still a popular option for many borrowers because it has flexible eligibility requirements and easy repayment terms that make borrowing a lot easier, even if it isn’t necessarily cheaper.

      Upgrade Disclosure

      Personal loans made through Upgrade feature APRs of 7.99%–35.97%. All personal loans have a 1.5% to 6% origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Lowest rates require Autopay and paying off a portion of existing debt directly. For example, if you receive a $10,000 loan with a 36-month term and a 17.98% APR (which includes a 14.32% yearly interest rate and a 5% one-time origination fee), you would receive $9,500 in your account and would have a required monthly payment of $343.33. Over the life of the loan, your payments would total $12,359.97. The APR on your loan may be higher or lower and your loan offers may not have multiple term lengths available. Actual rate depends on credit score, credit usage history, loan term, and other factors. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. There is no fee or penalty for repaying a loan early. Personal loans issued by WebBank, Member FDIC.

      What is a swimming pool loan?

      A popular way to finance a new swimming pool is to take out a personal loan, which can also be referred to as a swimming pool loan. Most homeowners do not want to provide collateral for such a project, so an unsecured personal loan can be a great way to finance home remodeling like a swimming pool. Home equity loans are another option, albeit a less popular one.

      How swimming pool loans work

      When you want to put in a swimming pool, you will need thousands of dollars to install it. Few people have the funds to pay upfront, so pool financing can become a great solution to pay that bill. As a homeowner, you can choose between a personal loan or a home equity loan. Regardless of which one you choose, both are incredibly beneficial for financing a pool.

      Financing a pool with a personal loan

      A personal loan is a great financing option because you do not need to secure the loan with your personal collateral, which means your assets are safe. However, with less to secure the loan, banks are more likely to charge higher interest rates and add extra fees to compensate.

      Pros of personal loans

      There are many benefits to personal loans, such as these.

      • Faster turnaround: With a personal loan, some lenders can provide financing as soon as the very next day so you can break ground that much faster.
      • No collateral needed: Unlike other types of loans, you don’t have to worry about losing your car or worse, your home if you default on the loan.
      • Less money spent on fees: Many of the lenders we have chosen here were selected for their low or no fees when it comes to things like origination fees, prepayment penalties and even late fees. If you are looking for a personal loan with bad credit, it still might be helpful to check out a lender that specializes for lower credit tiers.

      Financing a pool with a home equity loan

      Some borrowers choose instead a home equity loan. By using your home or car as collateral, you can improve your chances of not only receiving a competitive rate but receiving a loan at all if you have bad credit. There is more risk, but you are more likely to be rewarded with lower fees and rates.

      Pros of home equity loans

      A home equity loan has its own merits.

      • Lower interest rates: Home equity loans typically carry interest rates that are more competitive than those associated with unsecured personal loans.
      • Potential tax benefits: The IRS could give you a break by not taxing your interest payments when used for home improvement reasons.

      Check Your Personal Loan Rates

      Answer a few questions to see which personal loans you pre-qualify for. It’s quick and easy, and it will not impact your credit score.

      Get Started

      with our trusted partners at Bankrate.com

      How to choose the right pool loan

      1. Determine how much you need to borrow.

      When it comes to swimming pools, many different factors that can affect the total cost. This includes the size and shape, as well as the materials that will be used and any other caveats, like unique  additions and features.

           2. Shop your loan options.

      With so many lenders to choose from, you should take the time to shop and consider your options seriously. Your specific loan needs and credit history will determine what kind of interest rate you receive, as well as the terms that stipulate how long you have to pay it all back.

           3. Calculate what you can afford.

      Before you accept a loan, calculate what the total payment will be each month once fees and interest are added. While some lenders charge 8% and more for origination fees, others may charge none at all. The difference can mean hundreds or even thousands of dollars that you could have put toward your new pool.

           4. Choose the right kind of loan.

      Several options extend beyond just the lender that you choose. There are secured and unsecured loans that will give you the money you need for a pool loan, but they operate very differently. A home equity loan uses the equity you have in real assets to secure your loan. In contrast, an unsecured loan uses just your credit score and, therefore, typically brings higher interest rates.

      Things to consider.

      A swimming pool can bring boundless enjoyment to your family, but it is essential to understand that it may not add extra value to your home when it comes time to sell. If you would still like to move forward with your loan, you will want to make sure your credit score is as attractive as possible to prospective lenders. Be sure to pull a copy of your credit report and review it carefully to ensure that there is no inaccurate information that you need to dispute. You should also take this time to pay down any existing debts, so that you can present a more attractive income-to-debt ratio.

      Pool Financing FAQ

      Many lenders allow you to pay off your loan early, saving you countless dollars in interest in the meantime. However, there are steep fees that can sometimes accompany these kinds of prepayments. Before you approve your loan, take a look at the prepayment penalties that you will be assessed if you pay off your loan ahead of schedule.

      Yes, only homeowners are able to procure a loan for pool financing.

      Every lender has different requirements in order to receive financing for a pool, but all lenders refer to the FICO scoring method for credit requirements. Our top picks for pool financing work with a range of credit scores and collateral could further increase your chances of approval.

      We welcome your feedback on this article and would love to hear about your experience with the pool financing companies we recommend. Contact us at inquiries@thesimpledollar.com with comments or questions.

      Methodology

      SimpleScore

      The SimpleScore is a proprietary scoring metric we use to objectively compare products and services at The Simple Dollar.

      For every review, our editorial team:

      • Identifies five measurable aspects to compare across each brand
      • Determines the rating criteria for each aspect score
      • Averages the five aspect scores to produce a single SimpleScore

      Here’s a breakdown of the five aspect scores and their rating criteria for our review of the best personal loans of 2020.

      Why do some brands have different SimpleScores on different pages?

      To ensure the SimpleScore is as helpful and accurate as possible, we developed unique criteria for every category we compare at The Simple Dollar. Since most brands offer a variety of financial solutions, their products and services will score differently depending on what we’re scoring on a given page.

      However, it’s also possible for the same product from the same brand to have multiple SimpleScores. For instance, if we compare NetCredit’s personal loans according to our criteria for the best personal loans, it scores a 2.3 out of 5. But when we compare NetCredit according to the criteria for the best bad credit personal loans, it scores considerably higher, since the criteria for the latter review are more lenient (lenders who serve borrowers with bad credit will always offer higher rates, so we needed to adjust our category methodology to account for different industry standards).

      Questions about our methodology?

      Email Hayley Armstrong at hayley@thesimpledollar.com.

      Rates

      We looked at the maximum APR for each lender — the lower their maximum rate, the higher their score.

      Loan Size

      We awarded higher scores to lenders with more generous loan sizes.

      Customer Satisfaction

      We leveraged the J.D. Power 2019 Personal Loan Satisfaction Study℠ to see how customers rated their experience with each lender. (If a lender wasn’t included in J.D. Power’s study, we skipped this aspect and averaged the four remaining aspect scores.)

      Support

      We awarded higher scores to lenders with the most channels for customer support.

      Fees

      We looked at the three most common fees — origination, late payment, and pre-payment — and penalized lenders for each fee charged.

      Michael Rand

      Contributing Writer

      Michael Rand is a business and personal finance writer based in Beverly, Massachusetts. He holds a master’s degree in writing from Salem State University and spent years producing content for financial services clients as an agency writer. His work has been featured in publications like Interest.com, The Simple Dollar, and Monetize.info.

      Reviewed by

      • Andrea Perez
        Andrea Perez
        Personal Finance Editor

        Andrea Perez is an editor at The Simple Dollar specializing in personal finance. Prior to that she specialized in digital marketing content for online learning websites. She holds a master’s degree in journalism and media studies from the University of South Florida.