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What does the term “origination fee” mean?

The origination fee will be a cost that a lender charges to cover expenses associated with processing the loan application and preparing your loan for disbursement. The origination fee will be typically charged as a percent of the overall loan anywhere from 1% to 10% and even more depending on the lender.

For example, if you’re applying for a $10,000 loan with a 10% origination fee, the lender will either deduct the $1,000 origination fee or add it to the loan so now you will own more on the loan. While origination is common in personal loans, not all loans will come with origination fees.

Also, many lenders might waive origination fees to borrowers with a better credit score as they are considered less risky. It is important to understand that origination fees are not the only fee lenders may charge you at the time of the loan signing, and it is important to research all the fees.

Lenders are required to disclose any charges associated with the loan, this is mandatory by law and was designed to protect the borrowers from hidden fees. The origination fee will be an upfront charge which will cover fees associated with processing the loan, while this fee might be common many lenders don’t charge this type of fee or has lower fees.

It is important to shop for loan offers to ensure you’re getting the best deal.

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In what way do lenders assess and collect loan origination fees?

The loan origination fee will typically be charged by lenders to cover the cost of processing and underwriting the loan. The fees are used to cover the cost and time to evaluate borrowers’ creditworthiness, verify income, verify employment, and prepare the loan.

Origination fees will usually be calculated as the percent of the loan and will range anywhere from 1% to 10% or even more depending on the lender or the type of the loan. For example, a 3% origination fee of $50,000 will be $1,500.

It’s important to understand that not all lenders or loans have an original fee. In addition to origination fees lenders may charge fees such as application fees, appraisal fees, and prepayment penalties.

As a borrower when applying for a loan you should review your loan constantly and get a full idea of all the fees associated with the loan. Lenders are required to disclose all the fees being charged and it is important to compare these fees with other lenders to see which loan options will be the cheapest for you. 

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Why are origination fees charged?

Origination fees will be charged by the lenders to cover the cost of processing the loan. When a borrower applies for a loan lender needs to take time to evaluate the borrower’s creditworthiness and verify their personal information.

The process can be time-consuming and includes expenses such as salaries, paying for credit checks, and other documentation fees. Origination fees help lenders offset the cost of doing business and will be typically a percent of the loan.

This fee can either be deducted from the loan amount or added to your payments. Origination fees might seem like an additional cost for the borrowers but they are used to cover some of the cost for the lender helping them not rush through your application and increasing borrowers’ likelihood of approvals. Many loans will not have origination fees and lenders often offer promotions and packages waiving these fees.

Also, borrowers with a good credit score are always able to negotiate fees. 

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Are there loans without origination fees?

There are many loans out there that will not require origination fees to get funded. But many lenders can negotiate with their fees but you may need a good credit account to negotiate with lenders for better terms or fees.

Here is how origination fees can impact your loan amount: 


Loan A

Loan B

Origination fee


1% ($100)

Total Funding received






Monthly Payment



Total Cost of borrowing



In the table over you have two loans and you borrow $10,000. Loan A has no origination fee and will receive the full $10,000 of funding, while a loan has a 1% original fee which is $100, and will receive $9,900 total funding.

Having a loan origination fee will lower the amount you will receive while it might not be a deal breaker depending on your credit account it is something you should consider when applying for a loan.

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Other loan fees

While the original fee might be a common fee some lenders might charge it is important to understand that there are many other fees that can be associated with getting a loan. Here are some common loan fees to watch out for:

  • Late payment fee: This fee will be charged if the borrower is ever late or fails to make a payment.
  • Prepayment penalty: This fee will be charged if the borrower will pay off the loan sooner than the agreed time. It’s designed to compensate the lender for the interest they would have earned if the borrower had made the payment in full.
  • Application fee: It’s a fee charged to cover the cost of processing your loan application.
  • Underwriting fee: This fee is charged to cover the cost of reviewing and evaluating a loan application. 
  • Closing cost: These are fees associated with the closing of the loan, such as title search, appraisal fee, and attorney fees. 

You should review your loan terms and fees associated with the loan carefully before accepting them. It is important to keep in mind that not all lenders will have these fees, also that there might be other fees some lenders might charge you.

You should always shop for any loan offer you get to find a lender with the best terms.

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Origination fees Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Are origination fees tax-deductible?

In most cases, origination fees are not tax-deductible. However, if the loan is for a business purpose, the origination fee may be deductible as a business expense.

Can origination fees be waived?

Some lenders may offer promotions or special deals where they waive origination fees. Additionally, some loans, such as federal student loans, do not have origination fees.

How can I avoid paying origination fees?

To avoid paying origination fees, you can shop around for lenders that do not charge them or negotiate with lenders to see if they can waive the fee. Additionally, improving your credit score and financial situation may make you a more attractive borrower and allow you to qualify for loans with lower fees.

Do all loans have origination fees?

No, not all loans have origination fees. It depends on the lender and the type of loan. For example, federal student loans do not have origination fees, but some personal loans and mortgages do.

Can I finance the origination fee?

some lenders may allow you to finance the origination fee as part of the loan, which means you would pay interest on the fee as well. However, this can increase the total cost of the loan.

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