Brainy Loans

What is a Personal Loan?

Personal Loans will be a type of borrowing that individuals can use to pay for a wide range of expenses such as bills, home improvements, weddings, and much more. Personal loans are usually different from auto loans as they typically do not require collateral to get approved, meaning a borrower will not put up any assets such as a home to secure the loan.

Many lenders offer personal loans like banks, credit unions, and online lenders. The borrowing amount will depend on the borrower’s financial situation and the lender they select.

Usually the better the borrower’s creditworthiness the more favorable terms he will receive when applying for a personal loan. Interest rates for personal loans can either be fixed or variable meaning if they are fixed they will stay the same throughout the life of the loan, but if they are variable can change over time.

Personal loans can be an amazing option for borrowers looking to get funding for personal expenses, but as a borrower, you should carefully evaluate your financial situation and shop around loan terms to find the one that’s right for you. 

How does personal loan work?

Personal loans are designed to be used for a variety of purposes, unlike most secure loans such as mortgages with personal loans you are not required to have any collateral meaning you don’t have to put any collateral up for the loan. That means the application process is pretty simple for the loans, you will apply for the loan, and once approved the funds will be transferred over to you.

Then you will just need to start making payments right away as in the following month. To apply for a personal loan the borrower typically fills out an application with the lender providing them all of their personal information.

Then the lender will evaluate this information to determine if they are able to give the loan out to the borrower. If the borrower is approved for the loan lender will typically offer them a loan amount and their terms.

The amount someone is approved for will be determined by factors such as income, credit score, and other personal factors. But typically borrowers with higher credit scores will receive higher loans and much more favorable rates.

Once the loan is accepted lender will distribute the funds to the borrower’s bank account, and then the borrower will begin making payments on the loan. Overall personal loans are designed to be simple, but you should always make sure to understand the full terms and conditions of the loan agreement before agreeing. 

Brainy Loans

What are the types of personal loans

There are several types of personal loans where borrowers can borrow money for their use. Some of the most common types of personal loans will be:

Unsecured personal loans: These loans will not be backed by any collateral and the approval will be based on the borrower’s creditworthiness. Usually, they come with higher interest rates than secured loans.

Secured personal loans: These types of loans will be backed by some collateral such as savings or a car and will typically have a lower rate because of the collateral borrower is placing.

Debt consolidation loans: With debt consolidation loans borrowers are able to pay off multiple higher-rate loans with one single lower-interest-rate loan. This will typically save them money on interest and give them one payment to worry about. 

Other types: Personal loans will have many options depending on the lender or the borrower. The other loans you are able to get might be home improvement loans, medical loans, wedding loans, vacation loans, credit builder loans, and much more. 

Brainy Loans

What can you use a personal loan for?

With personal loans you have full control of what you can use the loan for, this will make personal loans very flexible giving the borrower control over his funds. Here are a few things you can use your personal for:

Debt consolidation: Debt consolidation will be one of the most common uses of personal loans. Many of us accumulate debt through various sources such as credit cards, medical bills, student loans, and such.

Consolidating your debt with a personal loan can simplify the repayment process by combining multiple payments into a single payment with a lower interest rate. Personal loans will typically have lower interest rates than many other loan types making them good options to consolidate debt.

It’s important to understand that consolidating your debt with a personal loan might be a good option but this might not be the best option for everyone. As a borrower, you should carefully review all the loan details before making a decision. 

Home Improvements: Investing in improving your property can be pricy, a personal loan can provide a convenient way to finance a home renovation or just upgrades. Using a personal loan for home improvements allows the homeowner to get access to some funds and will spread the cost of the renovation over time making it more manageable.

Also, personal loans for home improvement will have lower rates than credit cards helping you save money on your interest. While using a personal loan for home improvements is a great idea, you should carefully consider the cost of the loan and your ability to repay it. 

Medical Expenses: Medical expenses can be unpredicted and come at the worst time. Getting a personal loan can be a convenient way to cover expenses if your insurance company is not willing to cover them.

With a personal loan, you’re able to access quick cash allowing you to pay for medical expenses upfront and repay the loan. This will help eliminate the stress of having to worry about money and give you the funds necessary to pay the bill so you can take your time to recover.

Personal loans can be helpful options for any borrower facing higher medical bills, but you should use them responsibly and only if necessary. 

Car repair: Having to repair your can be costly and inconvenient. Most of us you our vehicle as a mode of transportation so being without a vehicle can really put you in a tight spot.

With personal loans, you are able to get access to quick funds allowing you to pay for the necessary expenses associated with your car. It’s important to understand while personal loans are a great way to pay for your repairs, one knows the risk associated with getting a loan and should always shop around for the best terms. 

Other expenses: Personal loans are an extremely great way to pay for many things such as weddings, vacations, education, and more. Getting a personal loan could help you finally open up the business you wanted to or take that vacation you dream of.

Getting a personal loan if done right could have some benefits in your life. But borrowers should always understand the full cost of borrowing money and try to avoid getting any loans if possible. 

Times where personal loans might not be the best idea

While Getting a personal loan can be helpful too for financing your expenses or helping you cover some bills. There are times when you should maybe consider other alternatives. Here are a few examples of times when getting a personal loan might not be the best idea:

  • Borrowing more than you can afford: It’s important to carefully look over your budget and make a plan on how the loan will be repaid. Taking out a loan with a larger payment than you are able to afford can result in late fees, damages to your credit score, and even defaults. 
  • Financing non-essential expenses: It’s usually not as wise to take out a loan for non-essential expenses such as high-end products like luxury clothing, new phones, or a shopping spree. These expenses should be funded by cash due to the fact that the price of the item will increase because of the interest that is added to the loan. 
  • To pay your bills: While getting a personal loan to pay your bills is possible it’s usually not the smartest idea. If you’re struggling to cover your expenses you should look at alternative methods such as budgeting, cutting expenses, or seeking out additional sources of income to help. 
  • High-interest: If your receiving a loan offer but are an extremely high-interest rate, you should definitely consider other options. Having a high-interest loan can make the cost of the loan much more and potentially make it difficult to repay it. 

Overall, it’s important to carefully look over all your options and the cost of the loan. You should set a plan to ahead of time of how you will be able to repay it and if it’s the right option in your situation. 

Brainy Loans

Pros and cons of personal loans

Personal loans have some pros and cons, it’s a factor you should consider before choosing to go with a loan offer. Borrowers should carefully research the terms of any loans before borrowing, shopping their loan offer, and exploring all the alternatives that might be available to them.

But here are some pros and cons of getting a personal loan:

Pros of a personal loan

Cons of a personal loan

Can provide quick access to funds

Can come with higher interest rates than secured loans, such as a mortgage or car loan

Can be used for a variety of purposes

Borrowers may be tempted to take out more than they can afford to repay

Can be a helpful tool for consolidating high-interest debt

Late payments or defaults can damage credit scores

May offer more flexible repayment terms than other types of loans

May come with origination fees or other costs

– Can help build credit history and improve credit scores

Can be a bad idea if the loan is used to finance non-essential expenses or ongoing living expenses

Can provide a more affordable alternative to credit card debt

Some lenders may require collateral or a co-signer, depending on creditworthiness

May offer lower interest rates than credit cards or other high-interest debt

Interest rates may be higher for borrowers with a poor credit history or limited credit history

It can be a good option for borrowers who need to borrow a smaller amount of money

Borrowers should carefully consider the cost of the loan and their ability to repay before borrowing

Brainy Loans

Alternatives to personal loans

Getting a personal loan might be ideal for some borrowers, but it may not always be the right choice for you. Personal loans usually have a much more strict approval process making it difficult for some to get approved.

However, there are many other options that you can consider instead of a personal loan such as:

Credit cards: With credit cards, you can access a line of credit that you are able to use as needed. This is useful for anyone looking to make small purchases for a short period of time.

Also, a lot of credit cards are able to offer 0% APR introductory periods giving you sometimes up words of 24 months of interest-free money. But credit cards will have high-interest rates ranging from 15%-30% making them an expensive alternative to personal loans.

Home Equity Loans: Home equity loans and lines of credit can be attractive alternatives to personal loans for homeowners. These loans allow you to borrow against the equity you have built up in your home, which is the difference between what you own on your home and the market value of the house.

Home equity loans are usually more long term ranging anywhere from 5 to 30 years, but a home equity line of credit (HELOC) will act like a revolving line of credit where you can draw and return funds as needed. Due to it being a secured loan typically it will come with lower interest rates and longer terms giving you a much more affordable payment on your loan.

But it is important to understand that your home is used as collateral and you can potentially lose your house if you default on the loan.  

Peer-to-peer lending (P2P): A P2P lending platform will act as an intermediary between borrowers and investors. This allows borrowers to get the funds they need without using a traditional bank route.

These types of platforms will offer a wide range of loans such as personal loans, business loans, and student loans. P2P platforms will typically offer much lower rates than traditional banks because of the direct connection to investments.

To apply for a loan like this you will make an account with one of many platforms out there, but usually, these platforms will look for stronger creditworthiness borrowers making it difficult for individuals with lower credit scores. Overall peer-to-peer lending platforms could be a great choice for some borrowers and it’s important to consider all the risks associated with loans before applying for one. 

Borrowing from friends or family: Borrowing money from your close circle could be an amazing option because of the flexibility you’re able to receive. But it’s important to establish clear terms and repayment plans which will help to avoid misunderstanding and resentment late on.

Most of the time your close circle is there to help you so usually they will be happy to let you borrow money, although that might sound amazing borrowing from them could make you feel guilty, obligated, or even some resentment. It’s important to approach these options with care and be aware of potential hurt relations that this could cause. 

Brainy Loans

How to get a personal loan

Ready to get a personal loan, here are some steps you can take to achieve your goal:

Your credit score is an important factor that lenders use to evaluate your creditworthiness. Check your credit score and credit report to ensure they are accurate and up-to-date.

Determine how much money you need to borrow and how much you can afford to repay each month. Consider your budget, income, and other expenses to ensure you can make the payments on time.

Research different lenders and compare their interest rates, fees, repayment terms, and eligibility requirements. Look for a lender that offers favorable terms and fits your needs.

To apply for a personal loan, you’ll need to provide documentation such as proof of income, employment verification, and personal identification. Gather these documents in advance to streamline the application process.

Once you’ve chosen a lender, submit your application and wait for a decision. The lender may need to verify your information and run a credit check before approving your loan.

Before accepting a loan offer, review the terms and conditions carefully. Pay attention to the interest rate, fees, repayment schedule, and any penalties for late payments or early repayment.

If you agree to the terms and conditions, sign the loan agreement and return it to the lender. This legally binds you to the terms of the loan.

Receive the funds and begin making payments according to the agreed-upon schedule: Once the loan agreement is signed, the lender will typically deposit the funds into your bank account. Begin making payments according to the agreed-upon schedule to avoid late fees or penalties.

Brainy Loans

Personal Loans Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What are the requirements for a personal loan?

The requirements for a personal loan vary by lender, but generally, borrowers need to have a good credit score, stable income, and a low debt-to-income ratio. Some lenders may also require collateral for a secured personal loan.

How much can I borrow with a personal loan?

The amount you can borrow with a personal loan depends on the lender and your creditworthiness. Some lenders may offer loans as low as a few thousand dollars, while others may offer loans up to $100,000 or more.

What is the interest rate on a personal loan?

The interest rate on a personal loan varies depending on the lender and your creditworthiness. Generally, borrowers with good credit scores and stable financial histories will receive lower interest rates than borrowers with poor credit scores.

How long does it take to get a personal loan?

The time it takes to get a personal loan depends on the lender and the application process. Some lenders may offer same-day or next-day funding, while others may take several days or weeks to process the loan application.

Can I use a personal loan to consolidate debt?

Yes, personal loans can be used to consolidate high-interest debt, such as credit card debt, into a single monthly payment with a lower interest rate.

What happens if I can't repay my personal loan?

If you can't repay your personal loan, you risk damaging your credit score and facing collection efforts from the lender. In some cases, the lender may also take legal action to collect the debt.

Are there any fees associated with personal loans?

Yes, some lenders may charge fees for personal loans, such as origination fees, prepayment penalties, and late payment fees. It's important to carefully review the loan terms and fees before accepting a personal loan.

Disclaimer: We make every effort to ensure the accuracy and currency of our information. However, the information presented may differ from what you find when you visit a financial institution, service provider, or product site. We do not provide warranties for any financial products, shopping products, or services. When reviewing offers, please carefully read the terms and conditions of the financial institution. Pre-qualified offers are not binding. If you notice any discrepancies in your credit score or report, please contact TransUnion® directly. Our partners compensate us for featuring their products on our site, and this may affect the products we write about and their placement on the page. However, this does not influence our evaluations, and our opinions remain independent.

Skip to content