Best small personal loans of July 2022


Our goal here at Credible Operations, Inc., NMLS Number 1681276, referred to as “Credible” below, is to give you the tools and confidence you need to improve your finances. Although we do promote products from our partner lenders who compensate us for our services, all opinions are our own.

Small personal loans can help you cover an unexpected expense in a pinch. Here’s what you need to know about borrowing a small amount of money. (Shutterstock)

Sometimes life throws unexpected expenses your way. If you need more cash than you have on hand to cover an unexpected expense or emergency, a small personal loan can come in handy. You can use personal loans for a wide variety of expenses, and you can choose how much you need to borrow — even if it’s a small amount.

Here’s how small personal loans work, 10 of the best small loan lenders to consider, and how to apply for a small amount of money.

Credible has several lenders that offer small personal loans. It’s easy to see your prequalified personal loan ratesand it only takes a few minutes.

What is a small personal loan?

A small personal loan is a loan that you take out for a small amount of money (often $2,000 or less) that you can use for a wide range of expenses. The amount you can borrow with a personal loan varies by lender and depends on your credit score and income.

Just like with a personal loan for a large amount, you’ll make payments in fixed installments, plus interest, over the course of your loan term.

Small personal loans are less common than larger ones, and not all lenders offer loans for small amounts. But you can find them with some online lenders, credit unions, and community banks. It’s worth noting that personal loans for very small amounts can sometimes come with high fees.

Credible makes it easy to compare personal loan rates from various lenders, all in one place. And it won’t affect your credit.

10 best small personal loans of July 2022

If you only need to borrow a little money, these 10 Credible partner lenders offer small personal loans:

Avant: Best for debt consolidation

  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $35,000
  • Minimum credit score: 550
  • Time to fund: As soon as the next business day (if approved by 4:30 pm Central time on a weekday)

Discover: Best for fast approval

  • Loan amounts: $2,500 to $35,000
  • Minimum credit score: 660
  • Time to fund: As soon as the next business day after acceptance

LendingClub: Best for flexible loan amounts

  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $40,000
  • Minimum credit score: 600
  • Time to fund: Usually takes about 2 days

LendingPoint: Best for home improvements

  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $36,500
  • Minimum credit score: 580
  • Time to fund: As soon as the next business day

OneMain Financial: Best for those with a low credit score

  • Loan amounts: $1,500 to $20,000
  • Minimum credit score: None
  • Time to fund: As soon as the same day, but usually requires a visit to a branch office

PenFed Credit Union: Best for no fees

  • Loan amounts: $600 to $50,000
  • Minimum credit score: 660
  • Time to fund: 2 to 4 business days after verification

Prosper: Best for large amounts

  • Loan amounts: $2,000 to $40,000
  • Minimum credit score: 640
  • Time to fund: As soon as 1 business day

Universal Credit: Best for autopay discounts

  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • Minimum credit score: 560
  • Time to fund: Within one day, once approved

Upgrade: Best for credit card refinancing

  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • Minimum credit score: 560
  • Time to fund: Within a day of clearing necessary verifications

Upstart: Best for low credit score

  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $50,000
  • Minimum credit score: 580
  • Time to fund: As soon as 1 business day

Other lenders to consider

The following two lenders aren’t Credible partners, so you won’t be able to easily compare your rates with them on the Credible platform. But they may also be worth considering if you’re looking for a small personal loan.

Navy Federal Credit Union

  • Loan amounts: $250 to $50,000
  • Minimum credit score: Does not disclose
  • Time to fund: As soon as 24 hours after approval

PNC Bank

  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $35,000
  • Minimum credit score: Does not disclose
  • Time to fund: Funding time may vary

Methodology

Credible evaluated The best small personal loan lenders based on factors such as customer experience, minimum fixed rate, maximum loan amount, funding time, loan terms, and fees. Credible’s team of experts gathered information from each lender’s website, customer service department, and via email support. Each data point was verified to make sure it was up to date.

How to apply for a small personal loan

If you decide to apply for a small personal loanthese are the steps you’ll generally take:

  1. Shop around and compare lenders. Research a few different lenders to see which offers the loan amount and terms you’re looking for. You can apply for prequalification for different personal loans, which won’t affect your credit. While a prequalification isn’t an official offer, it’ll give you an idea of ​​what rates and terms a lender is likely to offer you when you officially apply.
  2. Review loan offers. Once you’ve prequalified with multiple lenders, review your loan offers and choose the one that works best for you. Look at each lender’s loan amount, APR, repayment terms, and any fees.
  3. Apply. Once you know what lender you want to apply with, submit your application. You’ll need to provide personal information, like your name, address, date of birth, Social Security number, employment status, and income. The lender will run a hard credit check and review your credit once you apply, which can temporarily lower your score by a few points.
  4. Receive loan funds. If you’re approved, review and sign your loan agreement that outlines all the terms of your loan. The lender will disburse your loan funds, typically by direct deposit into your bank account.

If you’re ready to apply for a personal loan, visit Credible to quickly and easily compare personal loan rates to find one that works best for you.

How to qualify for a small personal loan with bad credit

You can still qualify for a loan with bad credit, but the interest rates you receive may be high, which can lead to paying more over the life of the loan. If you have time on your side, you can work to improve your credit score before you apply for a personal loan.

Here are some things you can do to boost your credit and increase your odds of being approved for a small personal loan or a lower interest rate in the future:

  • Make on-time payments to existing credit accounts.
  • Pay off debt (like credit card balances), which will lower your credit utilization ratio.
  • Check your credit report for any errors and dispute them with the appropriate credit bureau.

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