Finimpact

Best Home Improvement Loans

Homeowners may sometimes need an expensive repair or identify an opportunity to renovate their home. Home improvement projects are often costly, but a home improvement loan can help you get a lump sum of cash and repay it over time.

Best Home Improvement Loans
Lindsay Frankel
Written by:Lindsay Frankel
Personal Finance Expert

The term home improvement loan typically refers to an unsecured personal loan used for home improvements, as opposed to a home equity loan, which has a longer approval process and is secured by your residence. Many lenders offer high borrowing amounts, flexible terms, and low interest rates for home improvement loans. They come with fixed rates and fixed monthly payments, so it’s easy to plan for repayment. Our team of financial experts reviewed and ranked more than 30 online lenders to help you make a decision about the best funding option for you.

Our Top Picks for Best Home Improvement Loans

penfed_logo
  • Low interest rates
  • No origination fees
  • You can apply with a co-borrower
Min. Credit Score
Min. Credit Score Not disclosed
Loan Amounts
Loan Amount $600-$50K
Est. APR
Loan Repayment 1-5 years
rocketloans_logo
  • Same-day loan approval
  • Competitive interest rates
  • Credit scores as low as 640 accepted
Min. Credit Score
Min. Credit Score 640+
Loan Amounts
Loan Amount $2K-$45K
Est. APR
Loan Repayment 36-60 months
 upgrade_logo
  • Funding as soon as the next day
  • Can be approved with fair credit
  • Variety of discounts on rates
Min. Credit Score
Min. Credit Score Not disclosed
Loan Amounts
Loan Amount $1K-$50K
Est. APR
Loan Repayment 24 to 84 months

How to Choose the Best Home Improvement Loan

As you compare lenders that offer home improvement loans, there are several important factors to consider. We evaluated our picks based on the following:

  • Loan features: Make sure the lender offers the amount you need with a term length you can afford. And pay attention to any restrictions on loan use that would prevent you from using the proceeds for your home improvement project.
  • Interest rates and fees: Consider the full range of APRs and see if you can get a rate estimate. Don’t forget to consider fees like origination fees and prepayment penalties as well.
  • Application process: Make sure you understand the process and understand when a hard credit check will be required. If you prefer to transact online, make sure the lender has a quick and easy online application process
  • Qualification process: It doesn’t make sense to apply for loans you can’t qualify for, so eliminate any options that require a higher credit score or income than you have. Some lenders may have membership requirements or location restrictions as well. If you want to apply with a co-signer or co-borrower, be sure to narrow down your choices to lenders that allow co-signed or joint applications.
  • Customer support: Look at the methods of reaching customer support and their operating hours. Make sure it will be convenient for you should you ever need assistance.
  • Online user reviews: Independent review sites like Trustpilot can give you an idea of whether customers are satisfied with a particular lender. It’s okay if a lender has a few negative reviews, but serious complaints from a large share of customers is a red flag.
  • Perks and bonuses: Some lenders may offer hardship protection programs or more payment flexibility than others. Choose the features that are important to you. Pay attention to the online tools and the transparency of the company’s website as well.

Best Home Improvement Loans for 2022

1.PenFed — Best Credit Union

PenFed offers home improvement loans with next-day funding, affordable rates, and no prepayment penalties. However, you’ll need to be a member of PenFed to get a personal loan from the credit union, so it’s best for borrowers who are also looking for a checking or savings account or who want in-person assistance with applying for a loan.

Pros
Low cap on APRs
No origination fee
No prepayment penalties
Next-day funding
Pre-qualification option
Joint applications allowed
Secured options available
Low minimum borrowing amount
Cons
Little payment flexibility
No discounts
Membership required


You can borrow anywhere from $600 to $50,000 with APRs ranging from 4.99% to 17.99% and with a repayment term of up to 60 months. There are no origination fees or prepayment penalties, but there is a late fee of $29. You can get funding in one to two business days after verification. PenFed doesn’t report a minimum credit score or income requirements, but you’ll need excellent credit to qualify for the best rates.

The Bottom Line

PenFed is a great option for borrowers looking for low rates on a home improvement loan less than $50,000. If you don’t mind the membership requirement, you’ll enjoy several benefits to using PenFed for your home improvement financing.

2.Rocket Loans — Best for Fast Funding

With a home improvement loan from Rocket Loans, you can get the funds to start your project as soon as the same day, depending on the processing time at your bank. The online application process is quick and easy, making Rocket Loans ideal for homeowners dealing with emergency repairs.

Pros
Same-day funding
Rates start at 5.97% with Autopay
No prepayment penalties
Superior customer service reviews on Trustpilot
Cons
Charges an origination fee
Only two term choices available
Relatively high maximum APR

You can borrow between $2,000 and $45,000 from Rocket Loans with your choice of a 36 or 60 month term. There’s a 1% to 6% origination fee, depending on your creditworthiness, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. APRs range from 5.97% with Autopay to 29.99%. There are no prepayment penalties, but the lender does charge a $15 late fee. Rocket Loans doesn’t disclose a minimum credit score but reports that you’ll need an income of at least $24,000 annually to be eligible. There are no restrictions on use for these home improvement loans and you can get the funds as soon as the same day.

The Bottom Line

Rocket Loans is a good option for homeowners who need fast cash for their project, but given the origination fee and APR, excellent credit borrowers may be able to find a less costly loan elsewhere.

3.Upgrade — Best for Joint Applications

Many lenders only allow individual borrowers, but Upgrade allows you to apply with a co-borrower and considers credit information for both applicants. This can make it easier to qualify for a larger amount or better rates, but keep in mind that both borrowers will be responsible for repayment. Upgrade also has a rewards checking program and offers great loan discounts for customers. The flexible repayment terms also make this lender ideal for home improvement loans.

Pros
A variety of discounts, including a rate discount for checking customers
No prepayment penalties
One-day funding
Flexible repayment terms
Low minimum borrowing amount
Allows joint applications
Cons
High origination fee
High maximum APR
Limited customer support hours


Upgrade provides home improvement loans in amounts between $1,000 and $50,000 with flexible repayment terms between 24 and 84 months. There’s an origination fee between 2.9% and 8%, which will be deducted from your loan proceeds, and APRs range from 5.94% with Autopay to 35.97%. There are no restrictions on home improvement loans and you can receive your money as soon as the next day. Upgrade charges a late payment fee of up to $10 but doesn’t penalize you for paying off your loan early. The lender doesn’t disclose its minimum credit score or income requirements, but is known to be more lenient with fair credit borrowers than some other lenders.

The Bottom Line

For borrowers looking to apply jointly and choose between a variety of repayment terms, Upgrade’s home improvement loans are an appealing option.

4.AmOne — Best for Loan Comparison

For borrowers who need a reliable and easy way to compare APR estimates from a handful of lenders, AmOne is our top pick for a loan comparison platform. That’s because there are no minimum requirements, the application process is super intuitive, and customer support is top-notch.

Pros
See rates from top lenders with one application
Home improvement loans up to $50,000
Specialists available to assist during extended hours
Options for people with a variety of credit scores
Fast funding as soon as the next day
Low APRs available to creditworthy borrowers
Cons
Not a direct lender. Terms and requirements vary
No live chat


Since AmOne is a loan comparison platform, rates, terms, fees, and borrowing amounts are going to depend on the lender you are matched with. However, you can borrow up to $50,000 from send lenders, and there’s no minimum credit score or income requirements to satisfy before applying. Depending on the lender, you may be able to get your funds 24 hours after approval. AmOne performs a soft credit check to match you with lenders, so using the service won’t impact your credit score.

The Bottom Line

AmOne is a great place for borrowers to start their search for home improvement loans, especially if you’re not sure what you can qualify for. While it’s difficult to assess your options without applying, the process is quick and easy and won’t hurt your credit.

5.Marcus by Goldman Sachs — Best for Flexibility

Marcus offers home improvement loans for borrowers who want some payment flexibility, providing nine different term choices, the option to change your due date, and an on-time payment reward that allows you to skip a payment down the road if you’ve kept a positive payment history.

Pros
Customizable terms
Relatively low APRs
No fees of any kind, even late fees
On-time payment reward
No prepayment penalties
Cons
No cosigners or joint accounts
Fair credit borrowers may not qualify
Funding time can be relatively lengthy

marcus goldman sachs
You can borrow between $3,500 and $40,000 from Marcus for any home improvement and pay back the loan in your choice of nine terms, which makes your monthly payment highly customizable. Terms range from three to six years. APRs range from 6.99% to 19.99%, you can save 0.25% APR when enrolling in Autopay, and there are no fees whatsoever. It takes about one to four business days to receive your funds once you’re approved. Marcus doesn’t specify minimum requirements, but only the most creditworthy borrowers will qualify for the lowest rates. If you make your payments on-time for 12 months, you’ll have the option to defer payment for a month, which can be helpful during tough times.

The Bottom Line

Marcus by Goldman Sachs home improvement loans are ideal for borrowers who anticipate the need for flexibility with regards to how much and when they pay.

6.Discover — Best for Good Credit

If you have good or excellent credit, you can qualify for low rates at Discover, a lender that offers home improvement loans up to $35,000 with very few fees that can be used for any home-related cost.

Pros
Funding as soon as the next day
APRs start at just 5.99%
No origination fee
No prepayment penalties
Flexible repayment terms up to 84 months
Extended customer service hours
Cons
Late payment fee
No co-signed or joint applications

discover
With Discover personal loans, you can borrow between $2,500 and $35,000 for any home improvement project and receive the funds as soon as the next day. Terms range from 36 to 84 months and APRs range from 5.99% to 24.99%. There are no origination or application fees and no prepayment penalties, but Discover may charge a late payment fee of $39. However, you can change your due date up to two times over the life of your loan. Discover doesn’t disclose a minimum credit score, but you’ll need at least $25,000 in annual income to qualify.

The Bottom Line

For those who can qualify, Discover personal loans come with flexible terms, low rates, fast funding, and few fees. They’re an excellent option for borrowers commencing a home improvement project and can be used for any home-related purpose.

7.SoFi — Best for Hardship Protection

SoFi offers personal loans with no fees and low rates, especially to creditworthy borrowers. SoFi is also one of the few lenders to offer unemployment protection to borrowers with accounts in good standing.

Pros
Flexible terms from 24 to 84 months
No fees of any kind
No prepayment penalties
Borrow up to $100,000
Unemployment protection
Forbearance for natural disasters and national emergencies
Cons
Higher starting rates for longer term loans
Low approval odds for fair credit borrowers
$5,000 minimum borrowing amount

sofi
SoFi offers personal loans for home improvement in amounts ranging from $5,000 to $100,000 with repayment terms ranging from 24 to 84 months. APRs range from 5.74% to 21.78%, which includes a 0.25% Autopay discount and a 0.25% direct deposit discount. Once your loan has been in good standing for nine months, you’ll be eligible for unemployment protection, which allows you to pause your payments if you lose your job through no fault of your own. SoFi does not specify minimum requirements, but many third party sources report that you’ll need good or excellent credit to be approved. Funding time isn’t as quick as some other lenders, but you’ll receive your money within a few business days of being approved.

The Bottom Line

SoFi’s large loan amounts are ideal for homeowners taking on large projects who want added protection in case of hardship. However, fair credit borrowers may not qualify.

Try SoFi

8.Upstart — Best for Bad Credit or No Credit History

You can apply for a personal loan from Upstart even if you are credit invisible or have a score as low as 300. You can prequalify without hurting your credit and get your funds fast once you’re approved. The lender offers home improvement loans for any home-related repair or renovation up to $50,000.

Pros
Most customers get funds the next business day
Open to borrowers with poor credit and no credit history
Rates starting at just 5.22%
Excellent customer service reviews on Trustpilot
No prepayment penalties
Cons
May charge an origination fee
Late payment fee
Only two term choices

upstart
You can borrow anywhere from $1,000 to $50,000 for your home improvement project from Upstart and choose a three or five-year repayment term. APRs range from 5.22% to 35.99%. The minimum credit score is only 300 and borrowers with insufficient credit history to generate a score are also welcome to apply. However, you can’t have any bankruptcies or delinquent accounts and your debt-to-income ratio can’t exceed 50% (45% in some states). Depending on when you sign your loan offer, you’ll get your funds the next business day or within two business days.

The Bottom Line

Upstart is an ideal home improvement lender for borrowers with less-than-perfect credit. Even creditworthy borrowers may want to check their rate with Upstart. However, since there are only two term choices, just be sure the monthly payment will work for you before you apply.

9.Figure — Best for Secured Options

In addition to offering unsecured personal loans of up to $50,000, Figure offers home equity lines of credit of up to $400,000 with relatively fast funding time for homeowners working on more extensive renovations.

Pros
Low starting APRs on both products
Fast funding
Easy online application
Excellent customer service reviews
No prepayment penalties
Cons
Origination fee on personal loans
Minimum 620 credit score for HELOC (720 in Oklahoma)
Only 2 term choices for personal loans

figure
With Figure, you can apply for a personal loan between $5,000 and $50,000 with a term of 36 or 60 months. APRs range from 5.75% to 31.44% with an Autopay discount. There’s a 0% to 5% origination fee. You can get your funds as soon as the next day. Figure doesn’t disclose minimum requirements for its personal loan product, but in order to apply for a HELOC you must have a minimum credit score of 620. If you live in Oklahoma, you’ll need a 720, and if you’re using an investment property or applying for at least $200,000, you’ll need a 680. Credit lines start at $15,000 and go up to $400,00. You can choose a 5, 10, 15, or 30-year loan term and rates start at just 3.5%. You’ll receive your funds as soon as five business days after approval.

The Bottom Line

Figure is a great option for borrowers who want to use the equity in their home to secure a revolving line of credit for home improvement purposes. The Figure personal loan is worth comparing as well, though the most creditworthy borrowers may find fewer fees elsewhere.

10.LightStream — Best for Large Loans with Long Repayment Terms

LightStream offers large home improvement loans up to $100,000 with flexible repayment terms as long as 240 months and some of the lowest starting rates in the industry. LightStream personal loans can be used for any home improvement purpose, including pool and solar installation. This lender is best for creditworthy borrowers working on larger projects.

Pros
Low rates starting at 4.99% with Autopay
Flexible terms from 24 to 84 months, depending on amount
No fees whatsoever
No prepayment penalties
Rate beat program
30-day loan experience guarantee
Cons
No prequalification option
Good or excellent credit needed for approval
High minimum borrowing amount for longer term loans

lightstream
You can borrow between $5,000 and $100,000 for your home improvement project from LightStream and choose a term between 24 and 240 months. However, for terms lasting longer than 84 months, you must borrow at least $25,000. Rates for home improvement loans start at 4.99% with Autopay and go up to 16.49%. There’s no origination fee or any other fees of any kind. To qualify, you’ll need several years of credit history with good payment history, enough savings or assets, and stable and sufficient income, though LightStream doesn’t disclose a hard minimum credit score or salary amount. Since there’s no option for a soft credit pull, we don’t recommend applying unless you have a score of at least 660.

The Bottom Line

Lightstream is a great fee-free home improvement loan option for creditworthy borrowers and offers a ton of flexibility with regards to repayment terms. The lender is best for homeowners undertaking expensive projects that require a longer repayment period.

Best Home Improvement Loans — Feature Comparison



Lender

Est. APR

Min. Credit Score

Loan Amount

Loan Term

PenFed

4.99% to 17.99%

Undisclosed

$600 to $50,000

Up to 60 months

Rocket Loans

5.97% to 29.99%

Undisclosed

$2,000 to $45,000

36 or 60 months

Upgrade

5.94% to 35.97%

Undisclosed

$1,000 to $50,000

24 to 84 months

AmOne

Varies

None

Up to $50,000

Varies

Marcus by Goldman Sachs

6.99% to 19.99%

Undisclosed

$3,500 to $40,000

36 to 72 months

Discover

5.99% to 24.99%

Undisclosed

$2,500 to $35,00036 to 84 months