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If you’re in need of a personal loan, you have more options today than ever before.
One of the more innovative options out there is Upstart, an online lender that is leveraging cutting edge technology to power its loan approval process.
Let’s take a look at Upstart, so you can determine whether or not it is a good fit for you.
Onto our Upstart review!
What is Upstart?
Upstart is an online lending platform founded by former Google executives in 2012. Unlike most traditional lenders, Upstart uses proprietary artificial intelligence to provide a more in-depth assessment of a loan applicant. This often helps prospective borrowers who may have one or two minor credit issues obtain loan approval via Upstart when they would have likely been rejected by other lenders. This AI assessment also allows Upstart to approve more loans without the risk of default.
In order to apply for a loan on Upstart, you have to be a U.S. resident over the age of 18 with a valid street address (or a serving member of the US military), a social security number, a US bank account, and a valid email. You also need to be employed, or have a job offer that starts in six months or less. U.S. residents living in Iowa or West Virginia are not eligible to use Upstart’s lending services.
How it Works
Upstart has a simple, intuitive web portal that makes it easy for prospective borrowers to apply for a loan. You can prequalify for a loan in a matter of minutes by answering a few questions about your loan terms and the amount you wish to borrow and determine what sort of loan terms you may be eligible for. If you are satisfied with the terms provided in prequalification, you can move forward in the process by applying for an actual loan with Upstart. Depending on their risk assessment, Upstart may approve the loan and deposit it in the bank account you provided them within 24 hours.
Borrowers are charged an origination fee that can range from 0 to 8 percent, depending on the loan. Interest rates typically begin at 7.5 percent on average. The platform charges late fees that total either 5 percent of a payment or $15, whichever is greater, as well as a $15 penalty fee for any unsuccessful payment. Upstart allows borrowers to change their monthly loan payment date at any time, and also have a process for borrowers to temporarily suspend payments due to economic hardship, such as a catastrophic injury or job loss.
Current customers or prospective borrowers can contact Upstart via a variety of different ways. Upstart has a support email (firstname.lastname@example.org). It also has a toll-free phone system for customer support as well (1-855-438-8778). The company provides dedicated customer service support from 9 am to 8 pm ET seven days per week. Upstart customer service support is unavailable New Year’s Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.
Upstart has a stellar rating of 4.9 stars on Trustpilot, based on nearly 6,000 reviews. Of those reviews, 96 percent of users gave Upstart an excellent rating, while less than 1 percent issued a “bad” rating. The platform also has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) as well.
Upstart Pros and Cons
Here are some of the key pros and cons for Upstart you should consider:
- Speed. Borrowers with decent credit can often get approved for and receive their loan on Upstart within one to two days.
- Ease of Use. The Upstart portal is intuitive and very simple to use.
- Flexible Payments. Upstart allows you to adjust your payment date at any time and also has a system for temporarily suspending payments due to the onset of a sudden economic hardship.
- Cost. Upstarts origination fees can range up to 8 percent, which could impose a cost on borrowers that is higher than many other lenders charge. Additionally, the interest rates that Upstart charges are typically higher than many other lenders as well.
- No Cosigners. You cannot use a cosigner when you apply for an upstart loan. So, if you have major credit issues that would require a cosigner to get access to a loan, you will have to look elsewhere.
- Not Available Everywhere. Iowa and West Virginia residents are ineligible for Upstart’s lending program.
Upstart Review: Parting Thoughts
If you need a personal loan, Upstart is a great option to consider. This powerful online lending platform is easy to use and will often grant loan approval and deliver funds within a day or two. However, its loans can be a bit on the more expensive side, and it isn’t available everywhere. So. Do a little research and see if Upstart is a good choice for you.
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