Upstart Personal Loan Review: Affordable Loans for Fair to Good Credit

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Upstart Personal Loan Review: Affordable Loans for Fair to Good Credit

Upstart is a good choice for a personal loan for borrowers with fair or better credit or for financing a coding or technical bootcamp course. Through Upstart, you can borrow up to $50,000 for three or five years.

Good for

  • Borrowers with fair or better credit
  • Financing educational courses or bootcamps

Bad for

  • Joint applications
  • Borrowers in Iowa and West Virginia

Editor's Rating


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For borrowers with fair or better credit, a personal loan from Upstart can be an affordable option. The lender offers loans up to $50,000 with rates between 7.46% and 35.99%. While you will need a credit score of 620 to apply, the lender also evaluates your educational and job history when making a loan decision. The lender also works with 17 different coding and technical bootcamps, so it can be a good source of funding for your education.

Upstart Personal Loan Review: Is It a Good Choice?

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Upstart is a good choice for a personal loan for borrowers with fair or better credit or for financing a coding or technical bootcamp course. Through Upstart, you can borrow up to $50,000 for three or five years. APRs range from 7.46% to 35.99%. On average, it takes one business day to receive your funds once approved for a loan.

Good for...Bad for...
  • Borrowers with fair or better credit
  • Financing educational courses or bootcamps
  • Joint applications
  • Borrowers in Iowa and West Virginia

To qualify for an Upstart loan, you’ll need a credit score of 620 or more as well as a verifiable source of income. Upstart will also look at the length of your credit history and your educational and work history when evaluating your loan application (some exceptions do apply). The average Upstart borrower has a credit score closer to 700 with an annual income close to $100,000. While you can qualify for an APR as low as 7.46%, the average APR on a three-year loan tends to be on the higher end.

If you’re looking to take a coding bootcamp course, Upstart can be a good option for financing as the lender relaxes some of its requirements based on your acceptance to a course. The lender supports funding for 17 different bootcamps across the country, including Dev Bootcamp, Fullstack Academy, Hackbright Academy and MakerSquare. If you’re accepted into one of the 17 programs, you will be eligible to apply for a loan even if you don’t have a four-year college degree or a job offer starting in six months. For all education related loans, it will take an additional three business days to receive funds.

Upstart is available in all 50 states, with the exception of Iowa and West Virginia. You can use an Upstart loan to consolidate debt, pay off student loans, start or expand a business, pay for education, pay medical expenses, make a large purchase, relocate, travel and many other purposes.

Eligibility Criteria

To qualify for an Upstart personal loan, we recommend that borrowers meet the following criteria:

  • U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • At least 18 years old
  • Have a full-time job, a full-time job offer starting in 6 months (exceptions apply), a regular part-time job or another source of income
  • Credit score of 620 or higher
  • Low debt-to-income ratio
  • No bankruptcies
  • No current delinquencies
  • No more than 5 credit inquiries in last 6 months (excluding student loans, auto loans and mortgages)

Upstart will evaluate your credit history, your application information, planned use of funds and your ability to repay when approving you for a loan offer.

Upstart Personal Loan Terms and Requirements

Upstart offers unsecured personal loans up to $50,000 with APRs starting at 7.46%. While Upstart does not charge prepayment penalties, there is an origination fee on every loan.

Loan Amount Range$1,000 - $50,000
APR Range7.46% - 35.99%
  • Origination fee: 1% - 6%
  • Late payment fee: Greater of 5% of monthly past due or $15
  • NSF/returned payment fee: $15
  • No check processing fee
  • No prepayment penalty
Loan Terms3 or 5 years
Repayment OptionsMonthly
Direct Payment to CreditorsNo

Application Process

You’ll be able to check your rate on Upstart without affecting your credit score (they will use a “soft pull”). You’ll need to provide some information about yourself, including your name, address, date of birth, credit score, highest level of education and primary source of income. Once you fill this out, you will be able to see some loan offers with different rates.

Application ProcessOnline
Time to Get Funds1+ days
Credit Check
  • Soft credit check to get rate
  • Hard credit check when you apply
Credit ReportingYes
Cosigners/Co-borrowers Allowed?No

If you select one of the offers, you’ll need to provide your bank account information and documents to verify your identity and income (such as W-2s, utility bills, etc.). Upstart will also perform a hard credit check, which can affect your credit score. Once Upstart completes this, you’ll receive funds within one business day.

Upstart Application Process
Upstart Application Process

How Does Upstart Compare to Other Lenders?

If you’re applying for a personal loan, it’s a good idea to shop around to get the best rate. We looked at how Upstart compares to some of its main competitors.

Upstart vs. LendingClub

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If you want to apply with a cosigner or directly pay your creditors, LendingClub is a better option than Upstart. LendingClub offers similar terms as Upstart: you can borrow up to $40,000 for three or five years with APRs between 6.95% and 35.89%. You will only need a credit score of 600 to apply, which makes LendingClub a better choice for borrowers who can’t quite meet the requirements at Upstart. One downside to using LendingClub is that it may take up to seven days to fund your loan offer.

Upstart vs. SoFi

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SoFi is a great choice for borrowers with excellent credit. You can borrow up to $100,000 through SoFi with APRs ranging from 5.99% and 18.82% and terms of up to seven years. You will need a minimum credit score of 660 to apply. SoFi also offers free career services and networking events for its members, so it may be a good option for borrowers who want a personal touch or community feel.

Upstart vs. Best Egg

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Best Egg offers almost the same terms as Upstart; however, you can only borrow up to $35,000 with this lender. APRs at Best Egg are between 5.99% and 29.99% and loans are offered for three or five year terms. Best Egg does require a slightly higher credit score of 640 to apply, but it may be worth applying at both Best Egg and Upstart to get the best rate. Like Upstart, it will take one business day to receive funds once approved for a loan offer.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.