Marcus by Goldman Sachs personal personal loan: 2017 comprehensive review
Goldman Sachs

Launched in 2016, Marcus by Goldman Sachs offers unsecured personal loans to borrowers with good to excellent credit. Named for company co-founder Marcus Goldman, the lender is investment bank Goldman Sachs’ entry into the online personal loans market.

Consumers do not have to have an existing relationship with Goldman Sachs in order to qualify for a loan. Marcus says its loans can be used to pay off high-interest credit card debt, to fund major purchases or for special occasions. Loans may not be used for educational expenses.

Who is this loan good for?
Lending terms
Minimum borrower requirements
Fees and penalties
How to apply
What to do if you’re turned down

Because the screening process for its unsecured personal loans is almost entirely virtual, there are fewer loan underwriting costs, which means Marcus may be able to offer better interest rates and quicker turnaround times than brick-and-mortar lenders.

Because the loans are issued by Goldman Sachs Bank, the online lender charges no sign-up or origination fees. It relies on interest payments to make money on the loans.

Who is a Marcus personal loan good for?

  • Anyone with good to excellent credit. Marcus requires a minimum FICO score of 700, according to the company. Check your credit score for free before you apply.
  • Consumers with a low debt-to-income ratio. That’s the amount of debt you have compared to your gross monthly income. Calculate your debt-to-income ratio before applying. If you have a debt-to-income ratio of 40% or higher, it may be difficult to get approval for a loan.
  • Borrowers who don’t need to file a joint application. Marcus, like most lenders, does not allow multiple borrowers on a single loan.
  • Anyone looking to improve their credit score, as Marcus reports to the three major credit bureaus.

Who should not accept a loan

  • Anyone with bad credit. If Marcus quotes a high interest rate, you may be better off with a different type of loan.

Consider applying for a balance transfer credit card or a home equity loan if either of those offer more favorable terms.

Lending terms

Marcus offers loans that range from $3,500 to $30,000. Its personal loans carry a fixed annual percentage rate of between 6.99 percent to 23.99 percent. The quote you receive is based on multiple factors, including credit history, the amount you’re asking for, and the length of time you’re looking to pay it off.

According to its website, “Only applicants with excellent credit qualify for our lowest rates, and rates will generally be higher for longer term loans.”

How Marcus compares
Marcus Lending Club
Loan amounts $3,500 to $30,000 $1,000 to $40,000
APR range 6.99% to 23.99% 5.99% to 35.89%
Origination fee None 1% to 6%
Minimum credit score 700 660
Time to funding 2 days 14 days
Soft credit check with application? Yes Yes

Unlike some of the other online personal loan companies, Marcus does not charge any origination fees to process your loan.

Once approved for a loan it takes about two business days to receive the funds in your bank account.

Minimum borrower requirements

The minimum credit score to borrow is 700, but that’s not the only factor Marcus considers in evaluating an application. The company also will examine your “loan purpose, income and creditworthiness.”

You must be employed and over 18 (19 in Alabama and Nebraska, 21 in Mississippi and Puerto Rico), with a valid U.S. bank account and Social Security or Individual Tax I.D. Number.

Fees and penalties

  • There are no late fees, but you’ll continue to accumulate interest on the past due amount and final payment will increase as a result.
  • Late payments, missed payments, partial payments and loan defaults will will show on your credit report.
  • You won’t be penalized for paying off your loan early.

How to apply

The application process is straightforward and fast. Enter some basic information in the online application, including the loan amount you want, what you want to use the money for and your yearly individual income.

Marcus then will conduct a “soft” credit check, which won’t impact your credit rating.

If you’re approved, the online calculator displays a chart with individualized options, including the fixed monthly payment due on a different loan lengths and what the APRs for each would be.

Before finalizing your loan, Marcus, like all lenders, will do a “hard” credit check, which can adversely impact your credit score.

What to do if you’re turned down

If Marcus rejects your application and you believe your financial standing is strong enough, consider asking for clarification. The explanation could be as simple as a processing error. Or there may be a negative mark on your credit report that you need to investigate.

If your credit is weak, consider applying for a personal loan at a credit union. You may find more favorable rates and fewer lending restrictions. A secured credit card is another option, which can help you rebuild your credit.