LendingClub Personal Loans Review : Pros and Cons
Prom. College. Dream job. Whatever the situation, rejection always hurts.
It’s especially rough when you need a personal loan – and lender after lender says no.
But don’t take it personally. It’s not you.
It’s your credit score.
What you need is a lender that’s accessible to people with fair credit.
The rates aren’t great, and the fees are just plain annoying.
But, sometimes, you have to take what you can get.
65% of Americans stress about money. If you’re one of them, a personal loan from LendingClub could help.
So give this LendingClub personal loans review a read. It could help you turn that rejection into a “yes.”
What You Need to Know About LendingClub Personal Loans
LendingClub personal loans are available to people with lower credit scores, but they have relatively high-interest rates. They also come with an origination fee, meaning you’ll pay an extra charge right from the start.
Add all that together, and what have you got?
A decent option for people who need a loan but don’t have excellent credit.
Let’s begin this LendingClub personal loans review by breaking down the numbers:
Interest rates are set at 8.05%-36.00% APR – and folks with lower credit scores are likely to end up on the higher end.
LendingClub personal loans can range from $1,000 to $40,000 – which is a pretty solid range. This is especially nice if you want a smaller loan.
Loans from LendingClub can last from 3 to 5 years. This isn’t great if you want to stretch your loan out longer and make smaller monthly payments.
But hey, let’s look on the bright side. With a shorter loan duration, you’ll get out of debt faster and pay less interest!
Just make sure you can actually make the payments.
How to Qualify for a LendingClub Personal Loan
Qualifying for a LendingClub personal loan isn’t too difficult – and that’s one of the lender’s most attractive features.
As with any lender, your credit score will be a major factor in determining whether or not you qualify. Multiple sources suggest that you need a “fair” credit score to qualify for a LendingClub personal loan.
But what is a “fair” credit score, anyway?
Basically, a “fair” score puts you somewhere in the upper 500s or low-mid 600s.
So if your score is in that not-good-but-not-terrible range, LendingClub could be your ideal lender!
Income is also an issue for LendingClub (as it is for most lenders). LendingClub doesn’t specify a minimum income – which is always a relief – but you have to earn enough to make your monthly payments.
Not sure your credit score is up to scratch?
Not making as much money as you’d like?
Well, I’ve got some good news! LendingClub lets you apply with a co-applicant. That means you can team up with a relative or a friend and qualify for the loan with the help of their credit.
There are also some basic requirements to consider:
- You must be a citizen or resident of the United States
- You must be at least 18
Oh, and another thing: LendingClub doesn’t accept applications from Iowa. Sorry, Hawkeyes – I guess you’ll have to look elsewhere.
How to Apply for a LendingClub Personal Loan
LendingClub is an online lender – so you can apply straight through their website.
The process involves these simple steps:
- Prequalify. This is where you enter your basic info.
- Choose a loan offer. LendingClub will give you a list of options.
- Complete a formal application. Be ready to send in supporting documents.
- Receive your funds. LendingClub will send the money to your bank account or your creditors as soon as your application is approved.
So filling out the application appears to be quick and easy – but there’s more to the process.
If you don’t know how to get a personal loan, it’s best to do some research before you dive right in.
Some basic application tips:
- Gather all of your documents ahead of time. That means proof of address, pay stubs, and bank statements.
- Think about your loan terms before you apply. Don’t just take what they give you. Consider ahead of time what loan amount, duration, and interest rate would work for your situation.
- Make a plan to pay back the loan. This isn’t a place where you can “just wing it.” Your credit score and your financial future are at stake.
Are LendingClub Personal Loans Legit?
LendingClub is a legitimate, trustworthy lender.
I can see how an “online” lender could seem sketchy. I mean, that could be anyone running that website, right?
But in this case, there’s truly nothing to worry about.
LendingClub is even a publicly traded company – you can follow the stock price on the New York Stock Exchange.
Is LendingClub Safe?
LendingClub personal loans are completely safe.
Sure, the terms aren’t that great, but that comes with the territory when you’re looking for a lender that accepts less-than-stellar credit.
And even if LendingClub’s interest rates are higher than you’d like, they’re not high enough to be considered “predatory.”
When experts and state governments cap interest rates for lenders, they often choose a 36% limit.
Does that number sound familiar? It should!
It’s already appeared in this LendingClub personal loans review.
That’s right – 36% is LendingClub’s maximum interest rate.
So, are the terms ideal? Not exactly.
But LendingClub is still a legit, safe option.
Pros and Cons of LendingClub Personal Loans
Time for this LendingClub personal loans review to cut to the chase.
What’s great? What’s lacking?
Here’s my take:
- Direct payment to creditors. Using your loan for debt consolidation? Then this will be a major time-saver.
- Joint loans. You can team up with someone whose credit score is higher. Not only will this help you qualify, but you could also end up with lower interest rates.
- Prequalify without a hard credit pull. When you first browse your loan options on LendingClub’s website, your credit score won’t be affected. It’s only when you actually apply that they’ll conduct a “hard pull,” – which can cause a minor dip in your score.
- Origination fees. LendingClub charges you 3-6% of your total loan amount right at the start of the loan.
- Late Fees. You have a 15-day grace period to make late payments. After that, you’ll have a late charge of 5% of the unpaid payment amount or $15, whichever is higher.
This is a big lender we’re talking about here – which means there are LendingClub personal loan reviews all over the internet.
Over on Reddit, someone asked about using LendingClub for debt consolidation. People generally thought it was a good idea.
On ConsumerAffairs’ website, it’s more of a mixed bag.
One user raved about the lender, even calling it a “godsend.” But not everyone was so pleased.
Lindsay’s experience sure seems annoying, but she might have misunderstood the difference between “pre-qualification” and an actual application.
Rejection is still possible after pre-qualification – as Lindsay found out the hard way.
Commonly Asked Questions About LendingClub Personal Loans
Can LendingClub Be Trusted?
LendingClub is a legitimate and trustworthy company. The Better Business Bureau says LendingClub meets its accreditation standards – meaning the lender makes a good-faith effort to assist its customers.
Is LendingClub Easy To Get Approved?
LendingClub accepts applications from people with fair credit, making it more accessible than many other lenders. You can increase your chances by applying for a joint loan alongside someone whose credit and income are better than your own.
Is LendingClub Shutting Down?
LendingClub is not shutting down its operations. In 2020, the lender stopped offering peer-to-peer loans – but its personal loans are still 100% available.
Does a LendingClub Loan Hurt Your Credit?
Filling out a final application with LendingClub – which is different from the initial pre-qualification – could cause a minor dip in your credit score. That’s because the company conducts a “hard credit pull” to check your credit history.
What Are The Risks of LendingClub?
LendingClub is totally legit, but you still run the risk of defaulting on the loan – and severely damaging your credit score in the process. This, of course, is true with any personal loan. That’s why you should only apply if you have a solid plan for making your monthly payments.
What Is Wrong With LendingClub?
There’s nothing “wrong” with LendingClub. There was a bit of a scandal back in 2016 – but that involved a peer-to-peer lending operation that doesn’t exist anymore.
What Happens If You Default On a LendingClub Loan?
After a 15-day grace period, LendingClub charges late fees for missed payments. Defaulting on a personal loan also majorly damages your credit score. Key takeaway: Only apply for a loan if you’re sure you can make the payments.
How Does LendingClub Affect Your Credit?
At first, taking out a personal loan from LendingClub will cause a small dip in your credit score. That’s because of the “hard pull” the company uses to verify your credit history. But there’s good news: If you consistently make payments on time, the loan could eventually raise your score.
LendingClub Rates By Credit Score?
LendingClub seems to accept credit scores that are fair or better – meaning 580 or above. LendingClub’s rates range from 8.05%-36.00% APR. While there’s no definitive chart showing exactly what scores qualify for particular interest rates, you can assume having a better score will reduce the cost of the loan.
How Long Does It Take To Get a Loan From LendingClub?
It takes an average of 2 hours for LendingClub to approve a personal loan. Your application could take longer to process, especially if you’re asked to submit additional documentation. Each case is unique.
Did LendingClub Get Sued?
In 2022, the Federal Trade Commission sued LendingClub for promising clients they wouldn’t charge hidden fees – only to then charge hidden fees. The incident serves as a warning: Always look carefully at a loan’s details before signing the paperwork.