Back in 2011, SoFi started out as a community lender for Stanford graduates with student loans. In just a few years SoFi became the number one provider of student loan refinancing in the United States. It then applied the same principles that had made its student loan refinancing so successful to personal loans. The result is SoFi Personal Loans: one of the best consumer loan products available to prime and super-prime borrowers. As of November 2015, SoFi has funded over $5 billion in loans.
SoFi Personal Loans Review
This article will provide an in-depth review of SoFi’s personal loans, rates, eligibility criteria and a particularly thorough look at SoFi’s application process.
Who Are SoFi Personal Loans Designed For?
SoFi’s personal loans are designed for people with excellent credit, a solid employment history, and high incomes. These highly-qualified borrowers are a safe bet for SoFi’s investors, which is why they receive rock-bottom rates and preferential terms.
SoFi offers personal loans of up to $100,000 and some of the lowest interest rates available. If you need a personal loan or would like to consolidate existing debt, you should try to qualify for a SoFi personal loan first. Borrowers with excellent credit who are already paying more than 10% on their credit card balance owe it to themselves to at least try to refinance with a SoFi personal loan. The savings can be huge.
What Are The Advantages Of A SoFi Personal Loan?
- Ultra-low interest rates provide huge savings.
- No origination fees.
- No prepayment penalties.
- SoFi pauses the payments of borrowers who lose their job and helps them find a new one.
- Simple application process.
- Variable interest rates capped at 14.95%.
- Loan amounts range from $5,000 to $100,000.
- Terms range from 3 to 7 years.
What Are The Interest Rates And Terms For SoFi’s Personal Loans?
As of October 2016, SoFi’s personal loan rates range from
- 5.49% to 14.24% APR for fixed-rate loans and
- 4.99% to 11.09% APR for variable-rate loans.
These rates include SoFi’s 0.25% discount for borrowers who enroll in autopay. See our SoFi Review on personal loans for current rates.
These are prime rates and terms for unsecured personal loans. To put them in perspective, Lending Club, the largest peer-to-peer online lender, charges a 1 – 5% origination fee, only lends up to $40,000 and its interest rates (as of May 2016) range from 5.99% to 35.96%.
What Is SoFi’s Lending Criteria For Personal Loans?
As with its student loans, SoFi has stringent eligibility criteria. To qualify, borrowers must have:
- A substantial and steady income.
- An excellent credit history.
- A solid employment history.
- Be at least the age of majority in their state.
- Be a US citizen or a permanent resident.
As of September 2015, SoFi personal loans are available in all states except Mississippi, Nevada, and Tennessee.
What Is SoFi’s Personal Loans Application Process Like?
SoFi’s personal loan application process is fast and easy to complete. The following screenshots provide a detailed guide of what you should expect when you complete SoFi’s personal loan application.
Step 1 — Provide Personal, School, Employment and Loan Information
Applicants must include their name, address, date of birth, citizenship status, the school they attended, the degrees they completed, their place of employment income and work experience. Borrowers must also specify what they are planning to use the money for.
Step 1b — Provide Your Total Annual Income And The Purpose Of The Loan
Step 2 — Choose the Loan Amount and Type of Loan
At this stage, borrowers decide how much they want to borrow and whether they prefer a fixed rate loan, where the monthly payments never change, or a variable rate loan, which has lower interest rate that could increase in the future.
Step 3 — Upload Documents to Verify Your Information
The third stage requires applicants to upload documents so it can verify the identity, income, address and loan information. This is particularly important if you’re using the money to consolidate credit card debt or other loans. SoFi accepts photos or scans of the documents.
Step 3b — Upload Your Address and Citizenship Verification Documents
Step 4 — Setup Disbursement and Autopay
Applicants must provide the routing number and account number of the account in which the money is to be deposited. Borrowers who want to benefit from the 0.25% interest discount must also provide the details of the bank account from which automatic debit payments will be collected.
Step 5 — Sign the Acceptance Package
Once SoFi approves an application, the borrower receives a loan agreement package. Borrowers must then sign it electronically for the loan to be processed.
How Are SoFi’s Personal Loans Better?
SoFi simply has better rates and terms than nearly every other lender. The catch is that most applicants don’t meet SoFi’s stringent eligibility criteria. Although qualifying is hard, there is nothing to lose because SoFi doesn’t do a hard credit pull until you accept a loan. Taking a peek at the interest rate you qualify for only requires a soft credit pull. It only takes five minutes.
Consider it a free way to see how good your credit is.