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How would you describe an origination fee? 

No matter what loan options you’re looking to get approved for all loans will come with a kind of additional cost. A loan might not only come with an interest rate but also have fees such as origination fee, application fee, late payment fee, underwriting fee, processing fee and even closing cost.

Each loan option will come with different fees that might be added to the loan and each lender had a different policy on if they will charge you those fees or not. But today we will be focusing on the origination fee which is a fee that a lender charges to cover the cost of processing a credit application.

The origination fee could be a flat fee or range anywhere from 0.5%-10%. Each lender will choose the fees themself but typically originating are around a few percent.

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Describing origination fee

When applying for loans, you may encounter origination fees, which are charges that a lender imposes to cover the costs associated with processing the loan. This type of fee can be found in personal loans, auto loans, mortgages, and even federal student loans.

Typically, lenders will express the fee as a percentage or refer to it as a point. The amount of the fee can vary depending on the lender or the loan for which you are applying. Lenders will use the loan origination fee to cover expenses like credit checks, underwriting, documentation, and any other fees they may encounter while processing your application.

It is important to understand that the loan origination fee is a separate expense charged in addition to your loan. The origination fee will vary depending on a few factors, but it can range from 1% to 10%, and you should always consider this when applying for a loan.

It is important to note that not all lenders have an origination fee, and you should consider this when choosing the lender you wish to work with. All the fees will depend on what lender you go with or what loan you getting, but here is a look at the most common origination fee charges from different lenders:

Loan Type

Origination Fee Amount

Car Loan

Typically a flat fee of $25- $500. 


Typically 0.5% to 3%

Personal Loans

Typically 1% to 10%

Student Loans

Typically 1% to 5%


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How You Pay Your Origination Fee

Each lender has a different way they might want you to pay the origination fee. Also, the payment of the origination fee may vary by the type of loan you have but the most common ways origination fees are paid will be by getting it rolled into your monthly payment, paid upfront, added to the loan balance, or deducted from the loan amount. Loan origination fees are in some cases unavoidable and you should always consider that when you are out shopping for a loan.

Payment Method


Deducted from the loan. 

This is not as common but some lenders will deduct the loan origination fee from your loan meaning that you will receive a small loan. 

Added to the loan balance.

A lender usually will add the amount to your loan which is great but you will have to pay interest on that amount. Which might not be ideal if the loan has a high loan origination fee. 

Paid upfront. 

A lender might require you to pay for the loan origination fee upfront, usually common if the origination fee is small. 

Added to payments. 

The lender adds the fee to your monthly payment helping you pay down with your interest and principal. 


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Negotiating origination fees.

Depending on the lender or the loan type, you might be able to negotiate your origination fee, saving you some money. The higher your credit score, the more likely you are to be able to negotiate your loan origination fee because lenders will see you as low-risk and be willing to lower their profit to attract you.

Having a better credit score will also give you more options from different lenders, and this is understood by lenders, which forces them to be more competitive.

With most loans, such as personal loans, auto loans, and mortgages, you’re able to negotiate the origination fee, but in return, lenders might increase your interest rate, which can be a fair trade-off. To make sure you’re getting the best terms, you should always shop around, which will help you get the best terms and lowest fees.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Are you able to avoid origination fee?

The best way to avoid them is to negotiate with the lender or look for lenders that are willing to loan you money without any fees. Usually it will help you to have a higher credit score because you present low risk as the borrower.

Do all loans have origination fees?

No, not all loans will have origination fees. Usually, they will be set by the lender to cover the cost. You are able to shop around and find a lender that doesn't have any.

Are loan origination fees refundable?

The loan origination fees will be non refundable, once you agree to pay them it becomes part of your loan agreement.

Should I compare loan origination fee when looking for loans?

Yes, you should always consider all the fees lenders will have before applying for a loan because they can add extra costs to the life of the loan. That will help you fully understand the full cost of the loan and help you choose the cheapest loan offer.

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