Skip to Main Content

Upstart Personal Loans: 2024 Review

Updated on Jan. 1, 2024
Bankrate logo

The Bankrate promise

At Bankrate we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. While we adhere to strict , this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here's an explanation for .

At a glance

Bankrate 2024 Awards Winner: Best personal loan for borrowers with bad credit

4.8
Rating: 4.8 stars out of 5
Bankrate Score
Caret Down
Availability
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
5.0
Affordability
Rating: 4.3 stars out of 5
4.3
Customer Experience
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
5.0
Transparency
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
5.0

About Bankrate Score

Founded in 2012 by ex-Googlers, Upstart is headquartered in San Mateo, California and has originated more than $34 billion in personal loans. If you’re looking to consolidate debt, make a large purchase or cover some personal expenses, an Upstart personal loan may be able to help you do it.

Moneybag
Loan amount $1,000 – $50,000
Rates
APR from 6.40% – 35.99%
Clock Wait
Term lengths 36 to 60 months
This lender is best for borrowers with bad credit. Unlike most lenders, Upstart doesn't have a credit score minimum and instead uses a more holistic approach to measuring your finances. The lender will look at your education, work history and financial history for your rates and approval, rather than focusing solely on your credit.

Find personal loan offers in 2 minutes or less

Choose your loan amount and answer a few questions to see personalized offers.

Find my best rates
Lightbulb

Bankrate User Stats

Bankrate users taking out personal loans from Upstart have followed the below trends and stats:

  • Average funded loan amount: $14,953
  • Funded loan range: $1,000-$50,000
  • Average funding time: 1.8 days
  • Average APR of funded loan: 25.60%
  • Amount of loans funded through Bankrate since 2022: 8,605. More than any other lender on Bankrate.
  • Popular loan purpose trends: 49.4% of Upstart borrowers on Bankrate take out personal loans to consolidate debt, more than any other loan purpose.

Upstart pros and cons

While Upstart has benefits that appeal to borrowers across the credit spectrum, it also has some hefty drawbacks to be aware of.

PROS

  • Checkmark

    Options for borrowers with low credit scores.

  • Checkmark

    Low minimum APR.

  • Checkmark

    Fast funding.

CONS

  • Close X

    Origination fee.

  • Close X

    High maximum APR.

  • Close X

    Certain states have higher borrowing minimums.

Do you qualify?

To qualify for a personal loan through Upstart, borrowers must meet several requirements.

  • At least 18 years old.
  • U.S. residential street address and currently reside there (excluding military personnel on active duty).
  • Valid email account.
  • Verifiable name, date of birth and social security number.
  • Regular source of income, or a full time job offer starting in six months.
  • Not be a resident of West Virginia or Iowa.
  • Personal banking account at a U.S. institution with a routing transit number. 
  • Have a minimum annual income of $12,000.
  • A minimum credit score of 300 or insufficient history to generate a score.
  • No negative material change in your credit report from the time the loan offer was accepted to funding. 
  • Meeting the debt-to-income requirement of 50 percent (excluding rent or mortgage payments) and 45 percent for those who live in Connecticut, Maryland, New York or Vermont. 
  • No reported bankruptcies in the last 12 months. 
  • No public records of consumer reports within the last 12 months (excluding paid civil judgements or paid tax liens). 
  • No reported delinquent accounts. 
  • Fewer than six inquiries on your credit report in the last six months (not including those related to student loans, vehicle loans or mortgages). 

What Upstart doesn't allow loan funds to be used for

You can use an Upstart personal loan for almost every legal purchase, like debt consolidation, to make home improvements or to pay down medical debt. However, the use of the loan proceeds for education-related expenses are prohibited in California, Connecticut, Illinois, Washington or Washington D.C.

How this lender compares

logo
Rating: 4.8 stars out of 5
4.8
Bankrate Score
APR from
6.40% – 35.99%
Loan Amount
$1,000 – $50,000
Term Length
36 to 60 months
Min Credit Score
Not disclosed
logo
Rating: 4.6 stars out of 5
4.6
Bankrate Score
APR from
8.99% – 35.99%
Loan Amount
$2,000 – $50,000
Term Length
36 to 60 months
Min Credit Score
640
logo
Rating: 4.8 stars out of 5
4.8
Bankrate Score
APR from
8.99%–29.99%
Loan Amount
$5,000–$100,000
Term Length
24 to 84 months
Min Credit Score
680

Upstart vs. Best Egg

Both Upstart and Best Egg have similar rates and terms, but Upstart's minimum APR is lower. Borrowers with an excellent credit score should first consider Upstart to potentially score the most competitive rate. Upstart may also be better if you're on the other end of the spectrum, too, given Best Egg has a minimum credit score of 600.

Read a full comparison of Upstart vs. Best Egg

Upstart vs. SoFi

SoFi and Upstart are polar opposites when it comes to terms and eligibility qualifications. While Upstart does offer a lower APR for the most creditworthy borrowers, SoFi has a higher borrowing maximum of $100,000 and offers best-in-class perks and benefits. However, it is harder to get approved for a SoFi loan, so borrowers should keep that in mind prior to applying.

Read a full comparison of Upstart vs. SoFi

Upstart: In the details

What we like and what we don’t like

There are plenty of reasons to borrow a personal loan from Upstart, especially if you have a thin credit history. But like every company, there are both pros and cons to borrowing with Upstart.

What we like 

  • Options for borrowers with low credit scores: Upstart doesn't base eligibility solely on credit score, giving those with a less-than-stellar score the opportunity to get approved. 
  • Low minimum APR: Upstart's APR range starts out at a competitive 6.40 percent.
  • Fast funding: The company touts that the loan funds can be available in as soon as one business day. 

What we don't like 

  • Origination fee: Upstart charges an origination fee up to 12 percent of the loan amount, which is subtracted from the balance disbursed to you. 
  • High maximum APR: While borrowers with a thin credit history may have better luck getting approved, they also have the risk of getting offered a high maximum APR.
  • Certain states have higher borrowing minimums: In Georgia, Hawaii and Massachusetts the minimum borrowing amount is higher than the $1,000 minimum.

How to contact Upstart

There are a few different sets of support hours, depending on what you need assistance with.

  • General support: Monday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET.
  • Payment support: Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. ET, Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET.

The customer service line is unavailable on New Years Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

How to apply for a personal loan with Upstart

Upstart’s application process is relatively simple and can be completed in three steps.

Fees and penalties

One of the biggest fees Upstart charges is the origination fee — which can be up to 12 percent of the loan amount. The origination fee is deducted from your loan funds before you receive them, so it’s important to borrow enough to ensure that you get the amount of money you need.

Upstart charges a late fee of 5 percent of the past-due amount or $15, whichever is greater, if you’re more than 10 calendar days past your due date. There’s also an ACH return or check refund fee of $15. Finally, if you request to switch from getting records electronically to getting paper copies, there’s a $10 fee.

Upstart doesn’t charge a prepayment penalty, so you don’t have to worry about incurring an extra fee for paying the loan off early.

Upstart frequently asked questions

How Bankrate rates Upstart

Overall Score 4.8 Explanation
Availability 5.0 Same-day approval and no credit score requirement.
Affordability 4.3 Competitive minimum APR, but charges several fees.
Customer Experience 5.0 Online application and account access, and seven-day customer support.
Transparency 5.0 All requirements, rates and fees are listed.

Methodology

To select the top personal loan lenders, Bankrate considers 20 factors. These factors include credit requirements, APR ranges, fees, loan amounts and flexibility to account for a wide range of credit profiles and budgets. Bankrate reviewed over 30 lenders and gave each a Bankrate rating, which consists of four categories:

  • Availability: What the minimum loan amounts are, its eligibility requirements and loan turnaround are considered in this category.
  • 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.
  • Customer experience: This category covers customer service hours, if online applications are available, online account access and mobile apps.
  • Transparency: This category is measured by how accessible credit requirements, rates and fees are on the lender's page. We also took into account whether prequalification was available, as all these factors are key for consumers to make an informed decision.

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.