Best Low Interest Personal Loans to Consider in 2023
Borrowing money at the lowest interest rate possible could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Yet not every personal loan provider offers the best rates available, and those that do typically offer their lowest interest rates to applicants with excellent credit.
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According to the Federal Reserve, the average interest rate on a 24-month personal loan in February of 2022 was 9.41%. If you’re able to lock in an interest rate below this figure, you can consider it to be a low-interest personal loan.
Consumers appreciate low-rate personal loans because they make borrowing money more affordable. The less you have to pay out to a lender in interest and fees, the more cash you’ll have left over to use as you see fit.
Because personal loans can have a big impact on your finances, it’s important to spend a little time reviewing your options to make sure you’re not overpaying. Also, it’s usually worth comparing your rates across multiple lenders to ensure you’re getting the best deal for your credit history and financial situation.
Our team of financial experts ranked lenders based on our ratings methodology for personal loans and found the best emergency loans on the market. This ratings methodology evaluates lenders based on loan length, APR, repayment terms, user experience, customer service, credit score history, banking and credit union use, and additional features.
Best Low Interest Personal Loans in 2023 — Full Overview
Below are the top 10 lenders that offer the best low interest personal loans in 2023.
Difficult to qualify with credit or income limitations
Most applicants don’t qualify for lowest APR
No prequalification option
Good to excellent credit required
LightStream offers consumers with excellent credit overall borrowing costs that are hard to beat. The online lender has fixed-rate personal loans that range from 3.49% to 19.99% APR. On top of LightStream’s competitive interest rates, the lender doesn’t charge any fees. Furthermore, LightStream offers to beat any lender’s unsecured loan rate by .10 percentage points through its Rate Beat program (provided you can provide proof that you qualified for a lower APR elsewhere).
Qualified borrowers may receive loan amounts from $5,000 to $100,000 with LightStream. Depending on the type of loan you receive, repayment terms can range between 24 and 84 months.
LightStream isn’t forthcoming about its minimum credit score requirements. Instead, the lender says it looks for borrowers with several years of credit history, a variety of account types on an applicant’s credit report (i.e., credit cards, installment loans, etc.), and little to no derogatory credit information. Low credit card utilization, an acceptable DTI ratio, and evidence of savings are also among the lender's requirements.
LightStream offers some of the most affordable personal loans available. If you have excellent credit, high income, proof of savings, and a low debt-to-income ratio, you may be able to lock in a great low-interest personal loan.
Upstart issues personal loans starting at a low APR of 5.35%. Some borrowers may qualify for 0% origination fees. However, the lender charges others up to 8% in origination fees and will deduct those fees off the top from the borrower’s loan proceeds. Most borrowers do not qualify for the lowest rates that Upstart has to offer. On average, Upstart borrowers pay an APR of 24.83%.
Upstart offers personal loans from $1,000 to $50,000. Borrowers must repay the funds they borrow from the online lender within 36 to 60 months.
The minimum credit requirements from Upstart are also flexible. (Though you’ll likely need excellent credit to qualify for the best rates.) Upstart states that borrowers with a credit score of 300 or even those with no credit score at all might be eligible for funding. Yet the lender also has a long list of qualification criteria that applicants must satisfy—from DTI ratio limitations to no bankruptcies filed within the last year to no more than six credit inquiries on a credit report.
Borrowers with credit challenges might find it easier to qualify for a personal loan with Upstart. However, those without excellent credit scores are likely to pay higher interest rates than they’d pay elsewhere.
PenFed provides many financial products and services to members of the credit union, including low interest personal loans. Annual percentage rates on PenFed personal loans start at a low 4.99%. The credit union’s maximum APR, 17.99%, is considerably lower than the top rate that other lenders may charge for personal loans. The credit union is also known for offering 0% origination fees for personal loan borrowers. Furthermore, if you apply with a co-borrower, there’s a chance you might qualify for a lower interest rate (depending on the creditworthiness of both applicants and other factors).
If you’re interested in joining PenFed Credit Union, you can apply for a personal loan of up to $50,000. Repayment terms with the credit union are flexible for qualified applicants, with loans available in 24 to 84-month terms.
However, PenFed isn’t transparent about its borrowing requirements online. The lender does not disclose the minimum credit score necessary to qualify for a personal loan, nor any of the other criteria an applicant may need to satisfy.
A personal loan from PenFed Credit Union might work well for people who prefer to borrow from a credit union with good credit to help them qualify for the lender’s best interest rates.
SoFi is an online lender with personal loan APRs as low as 6.49% (with discounts). In addition to the lender’s attractive interest rates, SoFi charges its borrowers no fees. Borrowers pay principal and interest only. The lender doesn’t require borrowers to have a specific minimum credit score. However, SoFi does note that factors such as credit score, income, and debt-to-income ratio—among other details—could impact your ability to qualify for a personal loan and the interest rate and terms the lender offers you.
Qualified applicants may be able to borrow $5,000 to $100,000 with a personal loan from SoFi. The online lender lets borrowers use the funds they borrow for a variety of purposes—from home improvements and debt consolidation to emergency expenses, fertility treatments, and more.
SoFi also offers flexible payment options. Borrowers might receive repayment terms of 24 months to 78 months, and the lender offers a bonus unemployment protection plan as well.
Borrowers who want to take out larger loan amounts and those who appreciate the simplicity of no fees might benefit from a personal loan from SoFi.
Marcus by Goldman Sachs gives eligible borrowers personal loans with fixed APRs starting at 6.99%. Aside from the interest rate a borrower receives, the lender charges $0 in additional fees. This setup makes it easy to understand the cost of a personal loan from beginning to end. Borrowers can enjoy another payment-related perk from Marcus by Goldman Sachs. When you pay on time (and in full) for 12 straight months, you have the option to skip a payment without accruing any additional interest.
Eligible borrowers may be able to take out personal loans up to $40,000 from Marcus by Goldman Sachs. Repayment terms for loans range from 36 to 72 months.
Unfortunately, the lender isn’t very transparent online where approval criteria is concerned. But Marcus by Goldman Sachs does note that borrowers with excellent credit scores of 700 to 850 tend to qualify for larger loan amounts and lower interest rates.
A personal loan from Marcus by Goldman Sachs might work well for borrowers who prefer the simplicity of paying principal and interest only, without having to worry about extra fees.
Rocket Loans has personal loan rates with APRs as low as 5.970% (with autopay discount) for well-qualified borrowers. The online lender also charges origination fees (1% and 6%) on all loans, and deducts those funds off the top before borrowers receive their loan proceeds. Qualification requirements with Rocket Loans are flexible—starting at a minimum credit score of just 600. Yet your financial profile (including credit history and credit score) will impact the APR the lender offers you. And credit blemishes could make you ineligible for the lender’s lowest rates.
With Rocket Loans, eligible borrowers may receive personal loans of $2,000 to $45,000. Repayment term options, however, are limited to just two options—36 months or 60 months.
The online lender offers a lot of flexibility when it comes to loan usage. Aside from educational expenses and illegal activity, there are few restrictions on how you plan to use the funds you borrow from Rocket Loans.
Borrowers with fair credit and those who appreciate loan flexibility might want to consider a personal loan from Rocket Loans. However, only well-qualified borrowers will be able to secure the lender’s best interest rate offers.
Direct payments to creditors with debt consolidation loans
Pros & Cons
Zero fees (unless you pay late)
Repayment term flexibility
Lender can pay off creditors directly
Prequalification process available
Free credit monitoring tools
Can return loan (interest free) for 30 days
Convenient Discover mobile app
Low maximum loan amount ($35,000)
Minimum household income required ($25,000)
Lower APRs elsewhere for excellent credit
Late fees may apply
Discover is a brand that’s well known in the credit card space, but the lender also offers low interest personal loans ranging from 5.99% to 24.99%. As long as you avoid paying your bill late, you don’t have to worry about incurring any extra fees. The lender doesn’t disclose its qualification requirements online. But you have the option to check your interest rate with only a soft credit inquiry (i.e., no credit score damage) if you want to gather more information for loan comparison purposes.
Loan amounts for personal loans from Discover range between $2,500 and $35,000. As a borrower, you may also receive one of five different repayment options—36, 48, 60, 72, or 84-month terms.
Discover allows borrowers to use personal loans for a variety of purposes. You may apply your personal loan proceeds toward debt consolidation, home improvement, financial emergencies, medical expenses, adoption, weddings, vacations, and more.
Consumers with good credit who appreciate low personal loan interest rates and are fans of the Discover brand may be good candidates for this personal loan option.
Upgrade offers personal loans with APRs starting as low as 5.94%. The lender also gives prospective borrowers the chance to prequalify and see their estimated interest rate without credit score damage. You should also be aware of the fees that Upgrade charges. All Upgrade personal loans feature an origination fee of 2.9% to 8%. So, on a $25,000 loan, you could pay anywhere from $725 to $2,000 in fees. The lender takes origination fees off the top, before issuing loan proceeds to qualified borrowers.
Qualified borrowers may take advantage of loan amounts between $1,000 to $50,000. Repayment terms are flexible as well, spanning from 24 to 84 months depending on the loan amount and other factors.
You’ll need excellent credit to qualify for Upgrade’s lowest interest rate offers. The average Upgrade borrower has a FICO® Score of 711. A minimum FICO Score of 660 or higher is recommended with this online lender, otherwise Upgrade may sell your loan off to institutional investors—a move that could impact the cost of your loan.
A personal loan from Upgrade may be a good fit for personal loan borrowers with good credit who want longer repayment terms.
Best Egg gives well-qualified borrowers personal loans with APRs as low as 5.99%. Included in that rate is an origination fee that ranges from 0.99% to 5.99%. Your origination fee comes out of any loan proceeds you receive. It’s worth pointing out that it may be tough for some borrowers to qualify for Best Egg’s best deal. You’ll need at least a 700 FICO® Score and an annual income of $100,000 or higher to secure the lender’s lowest APR.
With Best Egg, qualified borrowers may receive loans between $2,000 to $50,000. (Note: The minimum loan amount in certain states may be higher than $2,000.) Repayment terms range from 36 to 60 months.
You’ll need a minimum credit score of 640 or above to qualify for a Best Egg personal loan. And while some lenders might let you apply with a co-signer to help meet certain qualification requirements, Best Egg does not allow joint loan applications at this time.
Best Egg personal loans may work well for borrowers with above-average income and solid credit scores (700 FICO® Score and above). Consumers who want the flexibility to use their loan proceeds in a variety of ways may also be attracted to this online lender.
Happy Money - Best for Paying Off Credit Cards Only
Happy Money, formerly known as Payoff, offers borrowers a financing option it calls “The Payoff Loan™.” The lender’s low-interest personal loan product starts at 5.99% APR. But for loan amounts over $15,000, the minimum APR jumps to 6.99%. Unlike other personal loans, this low-rate financing option only works for credit card debt consolidation. But borrowers don’t have to worry about paying any fees outside of their interest rates, making it easy to understand the overall cost of financing throughout the life of their new loan.
Happy Money offers credit card consolidation loans ranging from $5,000 to $40,000. Borrowers can repay the funds they borrow over 24 to 60 months, depending on the loan terms the lender offers them.
You’ll need a minimum FICO® Score of at least 550 to qualify for a personal loan from Happy Money. This credit score requirement is much more lenient than what many lenders offer. However, with bad credit you should expect to pay higher interest rates for your loan.
Borrowers who want a personal loan to consolidate outstanding credit card debt might want to consider Happy Money.
How to Choose the Best Low Interest Personal Loan?
When you’re shopping around for the best low interest personal loan, there are several important factors to consider. As you review available loan options, the list below can help guide you through those comparisons.
Our experts used the parameters below (and others) to rank the lenders in this guide.
Qualification Criteria: It’s important to confirm that you can satisfy a lender’s qualification requirements such as minimum credit score, length of credit history, debt-to-income ratio, etc. before you apply for a personal loan.
Interest Rates and Fees: Examining the interest rates and fees (together called annual percentage rate or APR) that a lender charges can help you calculate the overall cost of financing.
Application Process: If you need access to your loan proceeds in a hurry, you may want to choose a lender that has a fast online application and funding process.
Loan Features: The maximum loan amount a lender offers, available repayment terms, loan use limitations, and other details can provide valuable insight when you’re searching for the right personal loan for your situation.
Customer Support: The availability and reputation of a lender’s customer support also matter. Such details could make your life easier or harder for years to come.
Online Reviews: Most lenders have some negative reviews online. But it’s still wise to check independent review sites like Trustpilot to search for a large number of complaints or other red flags.
Benefits and Bonuses: Personal loan providers may offer extra perks like payment flexibility, convenient apps, and free financial tools that might benefit you.
Main Features of The Best Low Interest Personal Loans
Minimum Credit Score
$1,000 to $50,000
24 to 84 Months
$2,000 to $50,000
36 to 60 Months
$5,000 to $100,000
24 to 84 Months
$1,000 to $50,000
36 or 60 Months
PenFed Credit Union
Up to $50,000
24 to 84 Months
$5,000 to $100,000
24 to 84 Months
$2,000 to $45,000
36 or 60 Months
$2,500 to $35,000
36 to 84 Months
Marcus by Goldman Sachs
Not Disclosed (700-850 for Lower Rates)
Up to $40,000
36 to 72 Months
$5,000 to $40,000
24 to 60 Months
What is a Low-interest Rate Personal Loan?
A low-interest-rate personal loan is a type of installment loan that features lower than average interest rates. Most personal loans also feature fixed interest rates. That means that if you can secure an attractive interest rate, it should be locked in for the life of your loan.
The Importance of Low-interest Personal Loans
It’s important to keep your credit in good shape so that low-interest personal loans may be an option for you when you need to borrow money. Of course, it’s wise to build an emergency fund that you can use when unexpected expenses arise. Yet knowing that you’re in a good position to qualify for a competitive personal loan if and when you need one can give you another layer of financial security and peace of mind.
Factors That Affect Your Personal Loan Rate
Since a lender doesn’t know you personally, it examines details about your finances and credit history to determine whether loaning money to you is a good investment. If a lender considers you to be a low-risk borrower (i.e., someone who’s likely to repay their debt as promised), it may be willing to offer you a lower interest rate in an effort to win your business.
Below are a few of the factors that a lender may consider when deciding whether to approve your personal loan application and what interest rate to offer you.
Credit History: Most lenders will review your credit history from at least one of the major credit bureaus—Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian. If there are any red flags present (e.g., late payments, charge-offs, collection accounts, etc.), such issues could increase your interest rate offer and might even disqualify you from financing.
Credit Score: A credit score is a rating that tells a lender how likely you are to pay a credit obligation 90+ days late in the next 24 months. A high credit score means that there’s less risk of this problem happening, and a lender may offer you a lower interest rate as a result.
Debt-to-Income (DTI) Ratio: Your DTI ratio helps a lender determine whether you can afford to repay a new debt. A lower DTI ratio can work in your favor when you apply for a personal loan or other financing.
Collateral: Many personal loans are unsecured. Yet with some lenders, you might be able to lock in a lower interest rate if you’re willing to pledge assets to back the loan. Putting up collateral can reduce the risk for the lender.
Loan Purpose: The way you intend to use the money you borrow can affect the rate that a lender charges you for a personal loan.
Education: Non-traditional lenders may consider your level of education during the application review process. If you have a professional degree that could afford you good job prospects, the lender might consider you to be a low-risk borrower.
How to Get a Personal Loan With Low Interest Rates
No matter which lender you work with, the process of getting a personal loan should be similar. Below are five basic steps you may need to complete to take out a personal loan.
Make sure you can afford to borrow.
Review your credit
Review your credit
Apply for the loan
Review and accept your loan offer.
How to Get Low-interest Personal Loans With Bad Credit
Having bad credit can make it more difficult to qualify for personal loans. Some lenders may not be willing to work with you until you take steps to improve your credit situation.
Other lenders may consider approving you for a personal loan with bad credit. However, the interest rates that those companies offer you will likely be higher in order to offset the added risk that a bad credit score poses to the lender.
A low interest rate personal loan can help solve a variety of financial needs. Whether you want to consolidate high-interest debt, cover the cost of a major expense or repair, or pay for home improvements, a low interest personal loan might be beneficial.
Just remember to shop around and find the best deal for your situation. The interest rate on your personal loan matters, of course. But be sure to compare fees, repayment terms, and other features that might impact you as well. The more information you have up front, the better prepared you should be to make a good loan decision.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)
What is a good interest rate on a personal loan?
The average interest rate on a 24-month personal loan in February of 2022 was 9.41%, per the Federal Reserve. Any APR below this average rate, therefore, could be considered “good” in comparison.
How to consolidate credit card debt with a low-interest personal loan?
Most lenders will let you use a personal loan to pay off debts—including credit card debt. If you have a good (or better yet, excellent) credit score, you may be able to qualify for a low-interest personal loan. If the APR on the new loan is lower than the APR your credit card company charges, you should be able to save money (provided you avoid new credit card debt after the pay off).
What is considered a low interest rate?
Borrowers with excellent credit might be able to secure personal loan APRs as low as 3.99% to 5.99%. Good-credit borrowers could still potentially find personal loan interest rates that are lower than the national average of 9.41%.
How do lenders determine interest rates?
Lenders set interest rates according to the market and a borrower’s level of risk. Low risk borrowers can typically qualify for better interest rates. Good credit, a low debt-to-income ratio, consistent employment history, and more are factors that could help you appear to be a low-risk borrower in the eyes of a lender.
Can you get 0% APR on a personal loan?
You might be able to qualify for a 0% introductory rate on a credit card or a 0% APR auto loan. However, you probably won’t be able to find a no interest personal loan.
If you do find a loan that features a 0% interest rate, be sure to pay attention to any fees that the lender may charge. Examining the fine print and online reviews could help you determine if a financing offer is really as attractive as it seems.
How do I get rid of high interest personal loans?
If you can’t afford to pay off a high-interest personal loan outright, you might want to consider refinancing. With good credit, you may be able to qualify for a new loan with a lower interest rate than you’re currently paying.
A lower interest rate could save you money. And if you’re able to get a shorter repayment term or make extra payments toward your principal balance, you could even eliminate the debt faster.