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Best personal loan rates for May 2022

As of May 23, 2022
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Bankrate's picks for the top personal loans considers the interest rates, terms and features each lender has to offer. We also lay out the benefits and drawbacks of personal loans along with rates and other information so you can decide if a personal loan is the right financial move for you.

Personal loans allow you to borrow a lump-sum to pay for a large expense and then pay it back over time in monthly installments. They have a couple of key factors to keep in mind when comparing options.

The best personal loan interest rates currently range from about 3 percent to 36 percent. The actual rate you receive depends on multiple factors, such as your credit score, annual income and debt-to-income ratio. The best rate that you can qualify for might not be the best loan you can qualify for — consider additional features offered and the other listed factors as well.

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4.6

Bankrate Score
APR from

5.73%*

with AutoPay
Loan Amount

$5k- $100k*

Term: 2-7 yr*
Min. Credit

Not disclosed

Apply on partner site

4.8

Bankrate Score
APR from

5.94- 35.97%

with AutoPay
Loan Amount

$1k- $50k

Term: 3-5 yr
Min. Credit

560

Check rate with Bankrate

4.7

Bankrate Score
APR from

5.99%

3 or 5 year term
Loan Amount

$2k- $50k

Term: 3-5 yr
Min. Credit

660

Check rate with Bankrate

4.6

Bankrate Score
APR from

6.99- 22.78%

with AutoPay
Loan Amount

$5k- $100k

Term: 2-7 yr
Min. Credit

Not disclosed

Check rate with Bankrate

4.6

Bankrate Score
APR from

5.99%

Loan Amount

$5k- $35k

Term: 2-5 yr
Min. Credit

600

Check rate with Bankrate

4.5

Bankrate Score
APR from

6.34- 35.89%

Loan Amount

$1k- $40k

Term: 3-5 yr
Min. Credit

Not disclosed

Check rate with Bankrate

4.8

Bankrate Score
APR from

6.99- 19.99%

Loan Amount

$3.5k- $40k

Term: 3-6 yr
Min. Credit

660

Check rate with Bankrate

4.6

Bankrate Score
APR from

7.95- 35.99%

Loan Amount

$2k- $40k

Term: 3-5 yr
Min. Credit

560

Check rate with Bankrate

4.5

Bankrate Score
APR from

9.95- 35.99%

Loan Amount

$2k- $35k

Term: 2-5 yr
Min. Credit

550

Check rate with Bankrate
APR from

7.99- 35.99%

Loan Amount

$1k- $35k

Term: 1-3 yr
Min. Credit

None

Check rate with Bankrate

The Bankrate guide to choosing the best personal loan

Why trust Bankrate?

At Bankrate, our mission is to empower you to make smarter financial decisions. We’ve been comparing and surveying financial institutions for more than 40 years to help you find the right products for your situation. Our award-winning editorial team follows strict guidelines to ensure the content is not influenced by advertisers. Additionally, our content is thoroughly reported and vigorously edited to ensure accuracy.

What is a personal loan?

Personal loans are short-term loans that consumers can receive from banks, credit unions or private lenders like online marketplace lenders and peer-to-peer lenders. The loan funds can be used for just about any purpose, such as paying off other debt, financing a home renovation or paying for family needs, like a wedding or adoption. 

A personal loan is repaid in monthly installments, similar to a car loan or home mortgage, with loan terms typically ranging from 24 months to 60 months or even longer. Personal loans are typically unsecured, meaning they are not backed by collateral such as a car, house or other assets. If you need cash fast, these loans are a good choice because the approval and funding process is often faster than that of a home equity line of credit, which lets you borrow funds as you need them rather than in a lump sum.

Compare personal loan rates in May 2022

LENDER CURRENT APR RANGE LOAN TERM LOAN AMOUNT BEST FOR
SoFi 6.99%–22.28% (with autopay) 2 to 7 years $5,000–$100,000 Overall personal loan
LightStream 5.73%–19.99% (with autopay) 2 to 12 years $5,000–$100,000 Generous repayment terms
Avant 9.95%–35.99% 2 to 5 years $2,000–$35,000 People with bad credit
Marcus by Goldman Sachs 6.99%–19.99% (with autopay) 3 to 6 years $3,500–$40,000 Debt consolidation
Best Egg 5.99%–35.99% 3 to 5 years $2,000–$50,000 Low APRs
Upgrade 5.94%–35.97% (with autopay) 3 to 5 years $1,000–$50,000 Fast funding
Payoff 5.99%–24.99% 2 to 5 years $5,000–$40,000 Paying credit card debt
Upstart 5.35%–35.99% 3 or 5 years $1,000–$50,000 Little credit history
LendingClub 6.34%–35.89% 3 or 5 years $1,000–$40,000 Using a co-borrower
PenFed 5.49%–17.99% 1 to 5 years $600–$50,000 Small loan amounts
TD Bank 6.99%–18.99% 3 to 5 years $2,000–$50,000 Few fees
PNC Bank Starting at 5.99% (with autopay) 6 months to 5 years $1,000–$35,000 In-person banking

Details: Best personal loan lenders of April 2022

Best overall personal loan

Min. credit score:
Not disclosed
Fixed APR From:
6.99% –22.78%
Loan amount:
$5,000–$100,000
Term lengths:
2 to 7 years
Min. annual income:
$30,000
Overview: SoFi offers a variety of loan amounts and repayment terms, and does not charge any fees. SoFi offers loans from $5,000 to $100,000 with term lengths from 2 to 7 years. 
Why SoFi is the best overall for personal loans: SoFi has all the features you would expect in a top-quality lender, including a variety of loan amounts, several repayment terms and zero fees. It also adds perks to help borrowers improve their financial stability and career, including the option to add a co-signer to your loan.

Best loans for generous repayment terms

Min. credit score:
Not disclosed
Fixed APR From:
5.73%
Loan amount:
$5,000–$100,000
Term lengths:
2 to 7 years
Min. annual income:
$50,000
Overview: Lightstream is ideal for borrowers who want a longer repayment term and lower monthly payments on their loan. Lightstream also lets borrowers choose when to receive the loan money, allowing for further financial planning. 
Why LightStream is the best personal loan for generous repayment terms: Its loan terms range from two to seven years for most loans (and up to 12 years for loans for home improvement, swimming pools and solar energy systems), which means you can take longer to pay off your loan and benefit from lower monthly payments.

Best loan for people with bad credit

Min. credit score:
550
Fixed APR From:
9.95% –35.99%
Loan amount:
$2,000–$35,000
Term lengths:
2 to 5 years
Min. annual income:
$14,400
Overview: Avant is a popular lender for borrowers with fair to poor credit. Its minimum credit score requirement is 580 FICO and 550 Vantage, lower than many other lenders. Avant is also a good choice for borrowers who haven’t built up much credit yet. 
Why Avant is the best personal loan for people with bad credit: Avant specializes in lending to people with fair or poor credit. Most of its customers have credit scores between 600 and 700.

Best loan for debt consolidation

Min. credit score:
660
Fixed APR From:
6.99% –19.99%
Loan amount:
$3,500–$40,000
Term lengths:
3 to 6 years
Min. annual income:
$35,000
Overview: Marcus allows borrowers to choose from nine different repayment plans and allows deferred payments with no added interest. These parameters make it easier for borrowers to customize their loan experience and consolidate existing debt without too many added costs.
Why Marcus by Goldman Sachs is the best personal loan for debt consolidation: Marcus specializes in debt consolidation loans with broad loan amounts and a relatively low APR cap of 19.99 percent. With a debt consolidation loan, you borrow money with one loan to pay off many smaller loans or credit cards that were charging much higher interest rates.

Best for low APRs

Min. credit score:
660
Fixed APR From:
5.99%
Loan amount:
$2,000–$50,000
Term lengths:
3 to 5 years
Min. annual income:
$0
Overview: Best Egg offers a low minimum APR of 5.99 percent and a reasonable rate cap of 35.99 percent. These relatively low rates make Best Egg a good option for borrowers looking to cut down on interest. This lender also offers flexible loan amounts ranging from $2,000 to $50,000 and is able to make direct payments to creditors on behalf of borrowers who take out debt consolidation loans. 
Why Best Egg is the best personal loan for low APRs: Best Egg’s interest rates start as low as 5.99 percent APR for those with the best credit. At 35.99 percent, its rate cap is roughly 6 percentage points lower than that of some lenders profiled on this page.

Best for fast funding

Min. credit score:
560
Fixed APR From:
5.94% –35.97%
Loan amount:
$1,000–$50,000
Term lengths:
3 to 5 years
Min. annual income:
$30,000
Overview: Upgrade offers a wide range of loan amounts from $1,000 to $50,000 and a reasonable rate cap of 35.97 percent. Borrowers are able to receive their money as soon as the next business day after being approved, making Upgrade an ideal lender for those who need quick funding. 
Why Upgrade is the best personal loan for fast funding: You can get your funds within one business day after approval with an Upgrade loan.

Best loan for paying credit card debt

Min. credit score:
600
Fixed APR From:
5.99%
Loan amount:
$5,000–$35,000
Term lengths:
2 to 5 years
Min. annual income:
$30,000
Overview: Payoff offers low APRs of 5.99 percent to 24.99 percent, making it an ideal lender for borrowers trying to consolidate credit card debt at a lower interest rate. This lender also offers free monthly FICO updates and reports payments to major credit bureaus in order to help borrowers build credit. 
Why Payoff is the best personal loan for paying credit card debt: While the average rate for credit cards currently hovers around 16 percent, Payoff loans start at 5.99 percent, which could save borrowers money on interest and help them get out of debt faster.

Best loan for little credit history

Min. credit score:
Not disclosed
Fixed APR From:
5.35% –35.99%
Loan amount:
$1,000–$50,000
Term lengths:
3 to 5 years
Min. annual income:
$12,000
Overview: Upstart evaluates an individual’s entire financial picture when considering loan applications, not just credit history. This lender also lets borrowers change their payment dates in certain situations.
Why Upstart is the best personal loan for little credit history: While Upstart has minimum credit score requirements, it evaluates more than just your credit score when you apply. The lender looks at your education, your job history and some credit score factors when determining your eligibility.

Best loan for using a co-borrower

Min. credit score:
Not disclosed
Fixed APR From:
6.34% –35.89%
Loan amount:
$1,000–$40,000
Term lengths:
3 to 5 years
Min. annual income:
$0
Overview: LendingClub allows borrowers to add co-signers to their loans, making this a good fit for those who may not be able to qualify for a loan on their own, or who haven’t had a chance to build up their credit history yet. LendingClub is also a good option for debt consolidation, as it offers the option to pay creditors directly. This lender also allows borrowers to change their payment dates, providing flexibility for those who need it. 
Why LendingClub is the best personal loan for using a co-borrower: If you’re struggling to find a lender that will let you borrow, you might need to enlist the help of a co-borrower. Not every lender offers the option to do this, but LendingClub lets you submit a joint application to help you qualify for a loan or get a better interest rate.

Best loan for small loan amounts

Min. credit score:
Not disclosed
Fixed APR From:
5.49% –17.99%
Loan amount:
$500–$50,000
Term lengths:
1 to 5 years
Min. annual income:
$0
Overview: PenFed offers a wide range of loan amounts from $600 to $50,000, making it ideal for borrowers who only need to borrow a small amount. PenFed also has seven days a week customer service and a low minimum APR of 5.49 percent. Since PenFed is a credit union, becoming a member also comes with added perks and opportunities to improve your financial wellness. 
Why PenFed is the best personal loan for small loan amounts: You can get a PenFed personal loan for as little as $600, which is ideal if you don’t need a lot of cash and don’t want to incur much debt.

Best loan for few fees

Min. credit score:
Not disclosed
Fixed APR From:
6.99% –18.99%
Loan amount:
$2,000–$50,000
Term lengths:
3 to 5 years
Min. annual income:
$0
Overview: TD Bank offers personal loans from $2,000 to $50,000 and has a low APR rate cap of 18.99 percent. TD Bank offers personal loans in 15 states.
Why TD Bank is the best personal loan for few fees: TD Bank charges only one fee: a late payment fee of 5 percent of the minimum payment due or $10, whichever is less. It doesn't have any origination fees, monthly fees, annual fees, prepayment fees or insufficient funds fees.

Best loan for in-person banking

Min. credit score:
Not disclosed
Fixed APR From:
5.99%
Loan amount:
$1,000–$35,000
Term lengths:
0 to 0 years
Min. annual income:
$0
Overview: For those looking for in-person service, PNC has 2,300 locations. Borrowers who already have a relationship with PNC are eligible for an autopay percentage rate discount. PNC Bank also allows borrowers to submit joint applications. 
Why PNC Bank is the best personal loan for in-person banking: Sometimes you just need to see someone face-to-face. PNC Bank has nearly 2,300 locations across 23 states and Washington, D.C., making it a good choice for people who prefer in-person banking.

What are current personal loan interest rates?

Personal loan interest rates currently range from about 3 percent to 36 percent, depending on your credit score. As of January 31, 2022, the average personal loan interest rate is 10.28 percent. The better your credit score, the more likely you are to qualify for a personal loan with the lowest interest rate available. Compare personal loan offers to see what you are eligible for before applying for a personal loan.

Average personal loan interest rates by credit rating

Average personal loan interest rates range from 10.3 percent to 12.5 percent for “excellent” credit scores of 720 to 850, 13.5 percent to 15.5 percent for "good" credit scores of 690 to 719, 17.8 percent to 19.9 percent for "average" credit scores of 630 to 689 and 28.5 percent to 32.0 percent for “poor” credit scores of 300 to 629.

CREDIT BAND CREDIT SCORE RANGE AVERAGE PERSONAL LOAN INTEREST RATE
Excellent Credit 720–850 10.3%–12.5%
Good Credit 690–719 13.5%–15.5%
Average Credit 630–689 17.8%–19.9%
Bad Credit 300–629 28.5%–32.0%

Excellent-credit loans

Excellent-credit loans are loans that are geared toward borrowers with excellent credit, typically with credit scores between 720 and 850. Having such a high credit score can come with many benefits, including average APRs as low as 10.3 percent — though some lenders go even lower. If your credit score falls into this range, look for excellent-credit lenders with low advertised rates and few fees.

Good-credit loans

Good-credit loans offer competitive interest rates and generally low fees. You're considered to have good credit if you have a credit score between 690 and 719, and with such a high score, you may qualify for average APRs as low as 13.5 percent. However, if you have good credit and are interested in a personal loan, shop around; you may be able to qualify for an even lower interest rate.

Fair-credit loans

If you have a fair or average credit score, it can be hard to find a personal loan that offers reasonable rates and fees. If your credit score falls between 630 and 689, your credit score is average. While this is considered a less-than-stellar score, you still may be able to qualify for a personal loan with an average APR as low as 17.8 percent. This list of the best personal loans for fair credit features lenders that cater to people with scores in the mid-600s.

Bad-credit loans

You can get approved for a loan even with bad credit, although you won't qualify for the best APRs. If your credit score is between 300 and 629, the best interest rate available could be around 28.5 percent. However, a bad-credit loan, even one with a rate close to 30 percent, is a better financial option than a payday loan; to see what rates are available, compare offers from a few bad-credit lenders.

Pros and cons of personal loans

Pros:

  • One lump sum, usually with a fixed interest rate, which helps keep monthly payments on track.
  • Get money quickly, sometimes within as little as a day, depending on the lender you choose.
  • Many are unsecured loans, which means your home or car isn’t used to borrow money.
  • Interest rates are much lower than those of payday loans, which charge upward of 400 percent.
  • Unlike highly risky payday loans, personal loans give you a reasonable amount of time to repay the loan.

Cons:

  • APRs are generally higher than those of some secured loans.
  • If you have a low credit score, you might not qualify.
  • Some lenders charge fees, like origination, late and prepayment fees. The lower your credit score, the more likely you are to have a lender that charges more fees.
  • Some lenders don’t allow co-signers, which means you can only use your credit score and history to qualify.
  • You’re adding another bill to your monthly payments, which might stretch or even break your budget.

Types of personal loans and their uses

With the exception of loans from a few niche lenders, like Payoff, most personal loans can be used for any purpose. Personal loans come in a few common categories.

Debt consolidation

Debt consolidation is when you pay off several debts with a new personal loan, then pay off the personal loan through monthly payments. 

Who it’s best for: Personal loans for debt consolidation are best for people who have several high-interest debts, generally through credit cards. 

What to watch out for: Look carefully to make sure the debt will cost less in the long run. Don’t consolidate debt unless you can get a better interest rate, and check to make sure any fees don’t add costs to the loan.

When to get started: If you have several high-interest debts, generally through credit cards, and can qualify for a lower interest rate with a personal loan, you may want to consider it.

How to get started: Evaluate what debts to consolidate and how much money you could save on interest rates, then get quotes from debt consolidation lenders.

Emergency expenses

Unexpected expenses like a car repair or hospital bill can throw off your monthly budget, and a small personal loan can alleviate the immediate cost.

Who it’s best for: Anyone dealing with a large emergency expense who doesn’t have the option of rainy day savings or a payment plan to pay for it without putting it on a high-interest credit card.

What to watch out for: A loan will cost more because of interest rates, so it’s best to avoid getting a loan unless it is absolutely necessary. Look for the lowest APR you can qualify for, and don’t take out a large loan than you need. If possible, see if there are other options before getting a loan.

When to get started: If there’s an emergency and you need a significant amount of funds in a short time, get started as soon as you know that a personal loan is the best option for you. 

How to get started: Apply for loans with lenders that you qualify for, especially considering lenders with quick payments after you are approved so you can handle the emergency as soon as possible.

Home renovations

A personal loan may be a great way to pay for a large home renovation project and boost the equity in your home.

Who it’s best for: People who can make home renovations that will increase the home’s value and can make the payments on the loan without financial hardship.

What to watch out for: The goal is to increase your financial stability, so don’t get a loan with high APRs or fees that will outweigh possible benefits.

When to get started: Apply for a loan once you determine how much you need by getting estimates from contractors. You don’t want to apply for more or less than you need, so you should have a good idea of what to expect first.

How to get started: After you have project estimates, look for lenders that will offer you low APRs. 

Major purchases or events

Personal loans are often used to cover major expenses, such as a wedding or vacation.

Who it’s best for: Anyone who needs to make a large purchase.

What to watch out for: It’s not generally a good idea to take on a lot of debt, especially for something that only lasts for a short period of time. It’s better to save up or cut expenses than to be paying for something with added interest for years afterward.

When to get started: If you have determined that a personal loan is the best way to go, apply for the loan by the deadlines you would need for the major event or when you plan to make the large purchase.

How to get started: Shop around with different lenders to find the best option for what you have in mind for your purchase or event.
 

FAQs about personal loans

Methodology

To select the top personal loan lenders, Bankrate considers 15 factors. These factors include credit requirements, APR ranges, fees, loan amounts and flexibility to account for a wide range of credit profiles and budgets. Of the 32 lenders reviewed, 12 made Bankrate's list of best personal loans. Each lender has a Bankrate rating, which consists of three categories. These categories include:

  • Affordability: The interest rates, penalties and fees are measured in this section of the score. Lower rates and fees and fewer potential penalties result in a higher score.
  • Availability: What the minimum loan amounts are, its eligibility requirements and loan turnaround are considered in this category.
  • Customer experience: This category covers customer service hours, if online applications are available, online account access and mobile apps.