Founded in the wake of the Great Depression with the motto “The Friendly Bank,” First Midwest Bank now boasts over 100 branches — all in Illinois, Iowa and Indiana.

First Midwest offers personal loans, auto loans, mortgages, home equity loans and specialty loans for building credit. Loans can be applied for online or in person at a branch. First Midwest Bank offers personal loans at rates that are competitive with credit unions, so rates are typically lower than that of other bricks-and-mortar institutional lenders.

The Chicago-based bank offers auto and home loans to residents of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Wisconsin. It offers personal loans in 27 states: Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia and Wisconsin.

Get pre-qualified

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

Who is a First Midwest personal loan good for?

  • Anyone with good to excellent credit: The minimum credit score required is 680, according to the company. That’s slightly lower than national average FICO score, which is 695. Check your credit score for free before you apply.
  • Consumers with a moderate debt-to-income ratio: That is, the amount of debt you have compared to your gross monthly income. According to a company spokesperson, applicants with a credit score of 680 to 719 can’t exceed a 40 percent DTI, those with a credit score of 720 to 759 can’t exceed a 43 percent DTI, and those with a credit score over 760 can’t exceed a 45 percent DTI.
  • Borrowers who want to file a joint application: Banks like First Midwest are more likely to allow multiple borrowers on a personal loan than are online marketplace lenders.

Pros of First Midwest Bank

  • Competitive, low rates for borrowers with good credit.
  • No fees beyond a documentation fee.
  • All banking needs can be handled in the same financial institution.
  • Quick decisions about funding.

Cons of First Midwest Bank

  • Good credit with a score of 680 or higher is required.
  • A full soft pull for qualification is required.
  • Can borrow only between $5,000 and $25,000.
  • Not all U.S. states served by First Midwest Bank.

How First Midwest Bank compares

First Midwest Bank LightStream Upgrade Marcus
Loan amounts $5,000 to $25,000 $5,000 to $100,000 $1,000 to $50,000 $3,500 to $40,000
APR range 7.17% to 12.87% 5.95% to 16.49% 7.99% to 35.89% 5.99% to 28.99%
Origination fee $100 documentation fee None 1.5% to 6% None
Minimum credit score 680 660 620 660 FICO Score 9, 580 VantageScore 4.0
Time to funding 1-3 business days Same day 1 business day About 2 business days
Soft credit check with application? Yes Yes Yes Yes

Lending terms

Unlike many online lending platforms, First Midwest Bank is a direct lender, meaning your personal loan comes from the bank, not a partner institution. Many personal loan companies make money by tacking on an origination fee, typically based on a percentage of your loan amount.

First Midwest doesn’t charge an origination fee, only a $100 documentation fee for processing your loan. The quote you receive is based on multiple factors, including credit history, how much you want to borrow, and how long you want to pay it off.

Minimum borrower requirements

The minimum credit score to borrow in most states is 680, but First Midwest will also consider other factors, including employment and income. You’re also required to have at least five years of credit history that is free of bankruptcies, foreclosures, repossessions and other major credit issues.

Fees and penalties

  • First Midwest charges a flat $100 documentation fee for servicing each loan.
  • You won’t be penalized for paying off your loan early.
  • Late payment fee is $10, 10-day grace period, included.
  • There are no fees for paying by check.

How to apply

The application process is straightforward and fast. Enter some basic information in the online application, including your name, Social Security number, employment information and income. The application also asks if you rent or own your residence. Homeowners have to provide some information about their monthly payment obligations, including mortgage payments, amount remaining that you owe and the total value of your home.

The bank will not tell you online whether your loan has been approved. It will call you either with a decision or to request identification and additional supporting documentation.

Applicants can either upload the requested information or go into a physical branch. When it’s time to sign and finalize your loan, you have the option to e-sign or do it at a branch.

Before finalizing your loan, First Midwest will do a hard credit check with TransUnion, which can adversely impact your credit score.

What to do if you’re turned down

If First Midwest rejects your application and you believe your credit and financial standing are 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 you need to investigate.

If your credit is weak, consider applying for a personal loan from OneMain Financial. A secured credit card is another option, which can help you rebuild your credit.

Get pre-qualified

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

How Bankrate Rates First Midwest Bank

Overall Score 3.8
Availability 3.4
Affordability 4.3
Customer Experience 4.7

Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by Bankrate.com staff. Opinions expressed therein are solely those of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Check the data at the top of this page and the lender’s website for the most current information.