LightStream Loans Review
Quick Review: Loans from LightStream, a division of SunTrust Bank, have some of the lowest interest rates on the market. Their APRs start as low as 4.99% and only top out at 16.79%. You can also borrow large amounts for long periods of time, with loans of up to $100,000 for as long as 84 months (12 years).
Plus, LightStream has “loans for practically anything,” according to the company’s tagline, and it’s true. Unlike most lenders, LightStream offers loans with different rates for a variety of distinct purposes, from debt consolidation to remodeling a kitchen to paying off dental expenses.
One downside is that LightStream does not disclose specific credit and income requirements for loan approval. You will need an SSN to apply for a LightStream loan, however. That much is clear. Below, you can find more information about LightStream personal loans as well as see how they compare to offers from other lenders.
LightStream Personal Loan Terms
|APRs||4.99% - 16.79%|
|Loan Amount||$5,000 - $100,000|
|Loan Term||36, 48, 60, 72 or 84 months|
|Credit Score Requirement||N/A|
|Loan Purpose||Debt Consolidation, Refinance, Home Improvement|
|How long does it take to receive the funds?||N/A|
*According to multiple third-party sources
LightStream Interest Rates & Fees
LightStream interest rates range from 4.99% to 16.79% and are fixed, not variable. However, there are individual interest rate ranges for each type of loan. For example, the interest rate range is 5.95% - 16.79% for debt consolidation loans and 4.99% - 13.79% for kitchen/bathroom remodeling loans. The exact rate you get within any of those ranges depends heavily on your credit score, income and other debts, among other factors.
LightStream also guarantees low rates. They advertise a “Rate Beat Program” where they will beat any interest rate you’re approved for by a competitor (for the same type of loan) by 0.10 percentage point.
LightStream does not charge “origination fees” to process loans. There’s no fee for paying off your loan early, either, plus no late fee if you ever miss a due date.
LightStream Loan Requirements & Application Info
LightStream does not disclose a minimum credit score needed for loan approval, but multiple third-party sources report that you will need a score of 660+. LightStream’s income requirements are not disclosed.
You will have to meet a few other basic requirements to get a LightStream loan. You must be of legal age to accept a loan in your home state (almost always 18 years old). And you must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident with a Social Security number.
LightStream doesn’t really have “pre-qualification,” but you can check potential rate ranges and estimated monthly payments using their online calculator. If you decide to apply, the only way to do so is online. LightStream does allow joint applications.
If you’re waiting on a decision, you can check your LightStream application status online by logging in to your account.
LightStream Loan Reviews & Transparency
LightStream, and its parent SunTrust Bank, both have a good reputation with industry watchdogs as well as with their own customers. There are relatively few complaints about their loans.
- Better Business Bureau: LightStream has an A+ rating but is not BBB accredited. Its parent bank, SunTrust Bank, also has an A+ rating and has been accredited since 1967.
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: The CFPB’s database has more than 8,300 complaints about SunTrust Bank. Only 258 of those are about personal loans. Some reasons for complaints include trouble making payments and required payment amounts being higher than expected. SunTrust has responded to all recent complaints in a timely manner.
- WalletHub: SunTrust Bank has a WalletHub user rating of 5/5 across nearly 600 reviews. WalletHub’s editors give LightStream personal loans by SunTrust a 5/5 score.
LightStream is transparent about their personal loan terms, which you can see on their website. However, they could be clearer about their minimum credit score and income requirements. The good news is LightStream offers $100 to anyone who is not completely satisfied with their loan. That’s a unique benefit and a nice touch.
LightStream Loans vs. Popular Alternatives
|APR||4.99% - 16.79%||6.9% - 19.98%||5.99% - 17.88%|
|Loan Amounts||$5,000 - $100,000||$3,500 - $40,000||$5,000 - $100,000|
|Loan Term||36, 48, 60, 72 or 84 months||12, 24 or 36 months||24, 36, 48, 60, 72 or 84 months|
|Credit Score Required||N/A||N/A||N/A|
WalletHub’s editors graded LightStream personal loans based on more than 20 individual metrics across seven major categories.
- Requirements: WalletHub considered the credit score and income required to apply, along with citizenship and identification requirements (e.g. whether ITIN is accepted in place of SSN).
- APR: We looked at LightStream loans’ minimum and maximum APRs as well as whether they are fixed or variable.
- Fees: Our editors examined the fees involved with taking out a LightStream loan. The most important were origination fees, prepayment penalties and late fees.
- Loan amounts: WalletHub considered the minimum and maximum loan amounts available, plus the range of months available to pay off the loans.
- Application process: We looked at how to apply (e.g. online, in person), whether co-signers are accepted, the availability of pre-qualification, and the approval/funding timeline.
- Customer satisfaction: WalletHub took into account LightStream’s BBB rating, number of CFPB complaints both in total and regarding personal loans, and WalletHub user reviews.
- Transparency: We determined how clear LightStream was about their loans’ terms and requirements for approval.
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