LightStream offers the best installment loans overall because of its extremely low APRs, ranging from 5.99% - 22.49%. In addition, LightStream does not charge an origination fee, offers up to $100,000 in funding, and has payoff periods as long as 144 months.
For your convenience, we’ll summarize WalletHub’s best installment loan picks below.
Best Installment Loan Comparison
|Lender||APR Range||Loan Amounts||Payoff Period|
|LightStream||5.99% - 22.49%||$5,000 - $100,000||24 - 84 months|
|Discover||5.99% - 24.99%||$2,500 - $35,000||36, 48, 60, 72 or 84 months|
|SoFi||7.99% - 23.43%||$5,000 - $100,000||24 - 84 months|
|Marcus by Goldman Sachs||6.99% - 24.99%||$3,500 - $40,000||36 - 72 months|
|Best Egg||7.99% - 35.99%||$2,000 - $50,000||Up to 60 months|
|Payoff||7.99% - 29.99%||$5,000 - $40,000||24 - 60 months|
|Upstart||5.35% - 35.99%||$1,000 - $50,000||36 , 60 months|
|LendingPoint||7.99% - 35.99%||$2,000 - $30,000||24 - 72 months|
|FreedomPlus||7.99% - 29.99%||$5,000 - $50,000||24 - 60 months|
If you’re still not sure which installment loan to apply for, try using WalletHub’s personal loan comparison tool. This can help you narrow down your choices based on your credit score and desired terms. Checking out the tips below will help, too.
Tips for Getting the Best Installment Loan
- Get pre-qualified. You can use WalletHub’s free pre-qualification tool to see what loans you have a good chance of getting approved for, as well as what terms you might receive. That will help you narrow down your options.
- Minimize fees, if possible. The fewer fees a loan charges, the better (unless the APRs are very high as a result). You will typically need a credit score of at least 660 to get a loan without an origination fee. If your loan does charge an origination fee, it may be charged upfront or it may be spread out throughout the life of the loan and increase the amount of your monthly installments.
- Only apply with lenders that have reasonable APRs. You shouldn’t accept any loan that charges more than a 36% APR, unless it’s an absolute last resort.
- Consider loan sizes and payoff periods. Larger loans naturally lead to larger installment payments compared to smaller loans for the same time period. You can decrease the amount of each payment by spreading your loan out over a longer timeline, but keep in mind that you’ll end up owing more interest this way.
- Consider local credit unions. It’s possible that credit unions in your area will offer more competitive terms than some of the big national lenders. Federal credit unions have an APR cap of 18%, and state credit unions have caps set by the state. Personal loans from credit unions are also less likely to charge origination fees.
Other Types of Installment Loans
When people hear the words “installment loan”, they typically think of a personal loan. Personal loans are also the best installment loans for most situations because the funds can be used for anything and there usually isn’t any collateral required. However, personal loans are not the only types of installment loans.
- Home equity loan
- Auto loan
- Student loan
- Credit-builder loan
Methodology for Selecting the Best Installment Loans
To identify the best installment loans, WalletHub’s editors compared more than two dozen of the largest loan providers on the market based on a combination of metrics across six major categories: loan requirements, APR, fees, the application process, loan amounts and transparency. Metrics with higher priority, such as APRs, were assigned higher weights than others, depending on the category of loan being evaluated.
In addition to the best overall installment loans, which usually require credit scores of 660+, WalletHub selected the best installment loans for people with lower credit scores. We also considered special categories like debt consolidation and long-term loans.