Adam McCann, Financial Writer
Yes, you can pay off a personal loan early without a penalty – in most cases, at least. Penalties for repaying a personal loan ahead of schedule are very rare among major lenders. In fact, none of the personal loan providers that WalletHub has reviewed charges a prepayment fee. The purpose of such a fee, when it’s actually used, is to help the lender recoup some of the money it would have earned had the borrower paid interest for the full term.
Personal loans generally require payment in equal monthly installments over a set period of time. But paying a personal loan off early can reduce the total cost of the loan by giving it less time to accrue interest. In addition, paying off a personal loan early reduces your overall debt load, which can improve your credit score. Another benefit is that you won’t have to worry about monthly payments anymore or have the stress of a loan hanging over your head for longer than necessary.
So paying off a personal loan early is good, provided you don’t get charged a fee. And it’s always wise to confirm that before submitting payment ahead of schedule. But even when there’s no fee, make sure that you can actually afford to pay off the loan early.
For example, if you have extra cash you could use to pay off the loan but do not yet have an emergency fund for unexpected expenses, it’s better to use the money to establish an emergency fund. And there may be additional situations where there’s something more urgent to use the money for than early loan payoff.
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