20 Best Personal Loans for Students in 2022

At a point in one’s life as a student, money is needed, at times you have it in excess sometimes you don’t have it and here is where personal loans for students comes in. 

A personal loan is money you borrow for just about any particular reason which usually includes student loans, medical bills, vacation and other relevant reasons best known to you.

Sometimes, a lot of personal loans are not stable as they are mostly not backed up with collateral. Personal loans are to be paid back which includes an interest in monthly or yearly instalments over the term of payments.

As a student having money issues, you should consider applying for a personal loan, where you can pay back easily without getting into a huge debt.  

Generally, private loans must be paid back over a set term, usually two to five years.

Personal loans can be applied by just anyone because they can be easily paid back, so it is advisable to check out the terms of these loans before they apply for them. 

This overview will give you a clear view of everything you need to know about the best personal loans for students and their requirements.

What is a Personal Loan?

From the introduction above, we said, a personal loan is money you borrow for just about any particular reason which usually includes student loans, medical bills, vacation and other relevant reasons best known to you. 

While personal loans, can’t be used for education costs like tuition, they usually help pay for other important expenses.

In most cases, private loans usually have higher interest rates than student loans, and this makes private loans a bit more expensive than student loans. 

But one of its perks is that you get to pay it back quickly because you’ll have to start making payments as soon as the loan is disbursed. 

As of 2019, the average APR on a personal loan is 9.41% but it can range from 6% to 36% depending on your creditworthiness, including an examination of your income, debts, and credit score.

Personal loans come in various types, and banks and other financial institutions make private loans to students. 

When you apply for private loans, the lender will want to see proof you can repay them, usually in the form of a good credit score

A co-signer can help you qualify; that person will be responsible for the loan if you can’t pay it back.

If you’re an MBA student, check out: Best Student Loans for MBA (Business Students) in 2022

Types of Personal Loans

Here are a few lists of types of personal loans;

Bar exam loans

Bar exam loans are types of personal loans that covers expenses like examination application fees, book expenses and it has a long term of 1-20 years with higher interest rates than most.

Boot-camp loans

Boot-camp loans are the types of personal loans for coding boot-camp and they have lower interest rates.

International student loans

These type of loans is generally for international students and they usually require a co-signer for the applicant.

Institutional loans

Institutional loans are types of personal loans offered directly by a college.

What is a Student Loan?

A student loan is a type of loan created to help a student cover their school-related expenses such as books, living expenses, tuition and other expenses. Student loans are designed to help students pay for college. 

It’s often advisable to take out federal loans first since they come with federal protections, such as access to income-driven repayment plans and student loan forgiveness programs. You can then use personal student loans to cover any financial gaps left over.

Why you Need to Apply for Personal Student Loan

Personal student loans are created to help support students financially, students who are in serious need of financial help and are unable to attend college can apply for a private loan.

Most private lenders do not need your credit history to disburse a student loan, although, Student loans often have lower interest rates than private loans.

If you desire to attend a community college, check out: 15 Best Student Loans For Community College In the USA

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What You Need To Know Before Applying For Personal Loans As A Student

Before applying for a personal loan, it is important to look out for the interest rate charges and be sure you can repay in time. 

Check your credit scores before you apply and your eligibility in other to know if you can apply or not. 

Make your research and check out for important details like APR, loan term, loan amount, fees, prepayment penalty, automatic withdrawals and other important details.

Where Can you Apply for a Personal Loan

1. You can apply for a personal loan at banks

2. Through credit unions

3. Through a referral from family or friends

4. Through secure online provider

5. Non-banking financial institutions,  

How Much Can you Get in Student Loan?

Depending on the platform you make use of, you may be able to borrow up to the full cost of your college education in personal student loans, although the exact amount depends on the type of student loan you borrow.

20 Best Personal Loans for Students in 2022

Top personal loan lenders give students the room to borrow for any reason and the best lenders offer a clear and straightforward application process to students. The lenders below offer the best personal loans for students.

1. SoFi Private Student Loan

Minimum credit score: 650.

Fixed APR: 4.99-19.50%

Days to receive a loan: 2-4 Days

Loan terms: 5, 7, 10, 15 or 20 years.

Pros

a) SoFi has flexible repayment terms

b) They are quite transparent

c) A parent can transfer a loan to their child

d) No extra fees

e) They offer  career planning, job search assistance and entrepreneurship support available to students

Cons

a. Loan size minimum is higher than most lenders, they don’t offer less than $5000

b. Not available in some states

c. There is a late fee of $5 late fee if your loan is 15 days past due.

Eligibility:

Applicant must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or have a qualifying visa (E-2, E-3, H-1B, J-1, L-1, or O-1). Non-permanent residents, DACA recipients and those without a qualifying visa need a co-signer who is a citizen or permanent resident.

2. Earnest

Variable Rates  Starting at 0.99%

Fixed Rates  2.94%

Loan Amounts  $1,000 up to the total cost of attendance

Loan Terms 5-15 years

Pros

a) You can decide to skip a payment every 12 months.

b) There is a nine-month grace period.

c) No extra fees.

Cons

a. There is no co-signer release.

b. Not available in all 50 states.

c. You must be enrolled in school full-time.

Eligibility: 

  • You must have a Social Security number.  
  • Must be enrolled in school full time.
  • You must have no past-due balances for at least one year. 
  • Must be pursuing a bachelor’s or graduate degree.

3. Sallie Mae 

APR: 3.50-12.60%

Variable  APR: 1.13-11.23%

Minimum Credit Score: 600

Mid-600’s

A credit score of approved borrowers or co-signers: 749.

Loan amounts: $1,000 up to 100% of the school-certified cost of attendance.

Interest rates, fees and terms

Loan terms: 5 to 20 years.

Pros

a. Non-U.S. citizens, including DACA students, can apply with a U.S. co-signer.

b. They provide loans to part-time students.

c. Students can access online tutoring and free credit score tracking.

Cons

a. There is a Late fee of  $5 late fee if your loan is 15 days past due.

4. Upstart

APR: 6.12% – 35.99%1

Loan Amounts:  $1,000 – $50,0002

Repayment Terms: 36 or 60 months1

A minimum credit score of 580

Cons

A. There is a Late fee of  $5 late fee if your loan is 15 days past due.

Eligibility:

No bankruptcies or public records on your credit report

5. Ascent Co-signed Student Loan:

APR: 3.28-11.26%

Min. Credit Score: 540

Fixed Rates: 3.28% to 11.26%

Variable Rates 1.47% to 9.05%

Loan Amount:$2,001 up to $200,000

Loan Terms:5-15 years

Pros

a) No need for a cosigner and with no credit history needed

Cons

a. Interest rates may be higher than other options

Eligibility:  

You must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or have DACA status, must be enrolled at an eligible institution full-time or half-time.

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6.  BoroCash

APR: 15.99% – 19.90%

Loan Amounts: $50 – $2,000

Repayment Terms: 1 – 12 months

Pros

a) International students are eligible

b) Low maximum APR

Cons

a. Available in only a few states

b. There is a risk of over-borrowing

Eligibility

  • You must be enrolled in a U.S. college or university or have had recently graduated
  • Must be over 18 years old, 
  • Must be a U.S. citizen, Green Card holder, or A5, C8, F1/OPT, G, H1B, J1, L1, O1 Visa holder

7. Discover Undergraduate and Graduate Student Loans

APR: 5.99-24.99%

Days to receive loan: 1 days

Loan amount: $2,500-$35,000

Loan terms: 15 years undergraduate students; 20 years graduate students.

Pros

a) Quick funding

b) No original fees

c) Among the best for payment flexibility.

d) International students are eligible

Cons

a. There is a late penalty

b. No credit score check to see what rate you’ll get

Eligibility:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. 
  • International students are eligible if they apply with a co-signer who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

8. CommonBond Private Student Loan

Min. Credit Score: 660

APR: 3.99-10.99%

Variable APR 3.80%- 9.36%

Loan term: 5 to 15 years

Loan amount: $2,000- $500,000

Pros

a) Forbearance of 24 months is longer than many lenders offer.

b) Co-signers are acceptable

Cons

a. Loans aren’t available in all states

b. Co-signers are required

c. There is a late payment penalty.

Eligibility:

  • Must have attended a school as a student. 
  • Must be a U.S citizen or possess a non-conditional green card.

9. Custom Choice Loan

APR: 3.20-10.77%

Variable APR: 1.03%-9.67%

Min. Credit Score: 660

loan terms: 7 to 15 years

Loan amounts: $1,000 up to 100% of the school-certified cost of attendance minus other aid, not to exceed $99,000.

Pros

No prepayment penalty

Low minimum loan interest rate

No late fees.

There is a  graduation discount.

Cons

Loans aren’t available in all the states

Loans not available to borrowers international students with student pass

Eligibility: 

Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

10. Education Loan Finance Private Student Loan

Min. Credit Score: 680

APR: 3.20-11.99%

Loan terms: 5 to 20 years.

Loan amounts: $15,000 up to your total outstanding loan balance.

Pros

a) You will be assigned to a student loan adviser.

b) Borrower can refinance parent PLUS loans in your name.

c) Available to borrowers in all 50 states

Cons

a. No co-signer release available.

b. There is a late payment fee of Late fees of 5%. Payment postponement isn’t available for borrowers who return to school.

Eligibility:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. 
  • Must have at least a bachelor’s degree.

11. Funding U Private Student Loan

Min. Credit Score: None

 APR: 7.49-12.99%

Loan terms: 10 years.

Loan amounts: $3,000 up to $10,000.

Pros

a) Loans aren’t based on credit scores

b) No need for a co-signer or credit history to get a loan.

c) No late fees

d) One of the best for payment flexibility.

Cons

a. Loans aren’t available in 19 states.

b. Low maximum loan amount

c. Payment is required while in school and during the grace period.

Eligibility: 

Must be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident or DACA recipient with a work-eligible Social Security number.

12. LendKey Private Student Loan

Min. Credit Score: 660

APR: 4.25-12.59%

Loan terms: 5 to 20 years.

Loan amounts: $5,000 to $125,000 for undergraduate degrees; up to $250,000 for graduate degrees; and up to $300,000 for medical, dental or veterinary degrees.

Pros

Co-signing options available

No original fees

Forbearance of 18 months for 15- and 20-year loan terms for the borrower.

Cons

Not available in all states

No payment postponement is available.

Eligibility:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. 
  • Must be a graduate. 
  • Have at least an associate degree.

13.  MPOWER Private Student Loan

APR: 7.52-14.98%

Loan terms: 10 years.

Loan amounts: $2,001 to $100,000

Pros

a) Non-co-signed student loans for international and DACA students.

b) No credit check

c) Available to international students

d) Borrowers are assigned a dedicated student loan adviser.

e) Interest rate discounts available

Cons

a. High-interest rate

b. Origination fees required

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c. Low loan maximum

Eligibility:

International students must be from one of the 180 countries MPOWER works with. You must be enrolled half-time or more

14.  College Ave  Student Loan

Minimum Credit Score: Mid-600s

Fixed APR: 4.49-11.98%

Variable APR: 0.94%-11.98

Loan term: 5 to 15 years

Loan amounts: $1,000 up to cost of attendance.

Pros

a) No origination fees

b) flexible repayment options

c) Six-month grace period extension is available.

Cons

a. Before you can request a co-signer release, You must be at least halfway through your repayment term.

b. Charges late fees

Eligibility:

International students are eligible if they apply with a co-signer who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

15. ISL Private Student Loan

Min. Credit Score: 670

Fixed APR: 4.60-7.40%

Loan amount: $5,000 to $300,000

Loan term: 5 to 20 years

Pros

a) As a borrower you can refinance without a degree.

b) You can refinance while in school or during a medical residency.

c) No origination fees

d) No payment penalty

Cons

a. interest rate varies by refinancing products

Eligibility:

Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident

16.  Ally

Min. Credit Score:

Fixed APR: 0.00%-26.99%

Loan amount:$250-$65,000

Pros

Repayment terms are up to 180 months, which is better than most

Low credit check requirement

Low rates

Cons

No direct access to ALLY

Eligibility:

Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

17.  LightStream

Min. Credit Score: 670

Fixed APR: 2.49-20.49%

Days to receive a loan: 0 days

Loan amount: $5,000 to $100,000

Loan term: 5 to 20 years

Pros

a) No origination fees

b) Fast disbursement

Cons

a. Credit check is one of their requirements

b. You cannot borrow less than $5,000

Eligibility: 

Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

18. Avant

Minimum Credit Score: 580

Fixed APR: 9.95-35.99%

Days to receive a loan: 1 day

Loan amount: $2,000 to $35,000

Loan term: 5 to 20 years

Pros

a) No prepayment penalty

b) Various range of loan amount

Cons

a. No co-signer

b. High APR

c. Not available in all states

d. Late penalty fee available

Eligibility: 

Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

19. LendingClub Personal Loan

Minimum Credit Score: 620

Fixed APR: 7.04-35.89%

Days to receive a loan: 2 days

Loan amount: $1,000 to $40,000

Loan term: 5 to 20 years

Pros

a) They disburse loan funds within 48 hours after approval

b) co-cosigner allowed

c) Joint application available

Cons

a. There is an origination fee

b. Low loan amounts

c. Limited loan term availability

Eligibility: 

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. 
  • Must be 18+

20. Marcus

Minimum Credit Score: 660

Fixed APR: 6.99.19.99%

Days to receive a loan: 1 day

Loan amount: $3,500 to $40,000

Loan term: 5 to 20 years

Pros

a) No charges on loan, that is no extra fees

b) Discounts are available

Cons

a. Funding can be slow

b. High credit score

c. Low maximum loan amount

Eligibility: 

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. 
  • Must be 18+

FAQs

Do banks give personal loans to students?

Yes, banks offer personal loans to students.

Are personal loans for students easy to apply for?

Personal loans for students is easy to apply for, as long as you meet the eligibility status

How can students apply for personal loans?

Students can apply directly on the official website of the lenders.

Can I apply for private loans as a student?

Yes, you can apply for a personal loan.

Are personal loans secure?

Yes, personal loans are secure but beware of over-borrowing.

Conclusion

Generally, loan makes students feel safe, the fact that you get to borrow funds for important stuff can be scary at first. However, going through the right procedure will enable fast disbursement which will enable You to use the money faster. I hope this overview gives you the answers to your questions.  

References

  • Credible: credible.com/blog/student-loans/personal-loans-for-students/
  • Nerd: nerdwallet.com/best/loans/student-loans/private-student-loans?PSLrelated
  • Lendedu: lendedu.com/blog/personal-loans-for-students/
  • Investopedia: investopedia.com/best-personal-loans
  • Investopedia.com/best-personal-loans

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