- Low APRs: 5.99% - 17.99%
- Loans as big as $20,000
- No origination or prepayment fees
- Co-applicants accepted
- Can apply with ITIN
- Must be a PenFed member
- $20 - $25 late fee
- Credit requirements not specified
PenFed Personal Loan Review Summary
PenFed personal loans offer extremely competitive rates, with APRs ranging from 5.99% - 17.99%. PenFed does not charge an origination fee, either, which makes their loans even cheaper than those of many competing lenders. Despite these excellent terms, PenFed personal loans aren’t especially hard to get. Though the credit union does not disclose a minimum credit score requirement, multiple third-party sources report it is around 600.
PenFed personal loans are only available to people who join Pentagon Federal Credit Union. But while the credit union used to be exclusively for military/government personnel and their families (as well as people who donated to certain organizations), free membership is now open to everyone.
Below, you can see how WalletHub rates PenFed personal loans in three major categories: Terms, Requirements & Application, and Reviews & Transparency. We also compare PenFed loans to some alternatives from major competitors.
PenFed Credit Union Personal Loan Terms
|APRs||5.99% - 17.99%|
|Loan Amount||$500 - $50,000|
|Loan Terms||12 - 60 months|
|Late Fee||$20 - $25|
|Minimum Credit Score||N/A*|
|Minimum Income||Not disclosed|
|Loan Purpose||Debt Consolidation, Home Improvement, Big Purchase|
|Time to Receive Loan Money||1 - 2 business days|
PenFed Personal Loan Rates, Fees & Other Terms
Category Rating: 100% (5 out of 5)
- Overall APR range: PenFed offers fixed-rate personal loans with an APR range of 5.99% - 17.99%. PenFed loans tend to be inexpensive compared to most other lenders because, as a federal credit union, they are required to cap their personal loan APRs at 18%.
- How rates are determined: The exact rate you get will be based on your overall creditworthiness and how long you’ve been a PenFed member.
- Fees: PenFed does not charge any origination or early repayment fees on their personal loans. They do have a $20 - $25 late fee and a $30 returned payment fee.
- Loan amounts & timelines: PenFed personal loan amounts range $500 - $50,000. They offer payoff terms 12 - 60 months.
PenFed Personal Loan Requirements & Application Info
Category Rating: 95% (4.75 out of 5)
- Membership: In order to be eligible to receive a PenFed personal loan, you will need to be a member of Pentagon Federal Credit Union. Anyone can join for free, though you’ll need to open a PenFed savings account with at least a $5 initial deposit.
- Minimum credit score: Not disclosed, but multiple party sources report a credit score requirement of at least 600.
- Minimum income: PenFed does not disclose minimum income requirements.
- Age: You must be at least 18 years old.
- Citizenship: You must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
- Identification: You must have a Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number.
- Pre-qualification: PenFed allows members to check their potential rates online, without affecting their credit score. If you don’t already have a membership, you can join on the spot.
- Ways to apply: If you would like to apply, you can do so online, by phone, or at a PenFed branch.
- Joint loans: PenFed accepts co-applicants for their personal loans.
PenFed Personal Loan Reviews & Transparency
Category Rating: 80% (4 out of 5)
- Better Business Bureau: PenFed is not accredited with the BBB but gets an “A+” rating.
- Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: There are fewer than 20 complaints about PenFed personal loans filed with the CFPB, as of March 2021. Some of the most recent complaints deal with having trouble applying for the credit union’s hardship program and having incorrect information reported to the credit bureaus.
- WalletHub: PenFed has earned an average user score of 3.9 out of 5 stars across more than 5,800 reviews.
- Transparency: PenFed is very upfront about the terms of their loans, though they are not very transparent about what credit and income you need to qualify.
PenFed’s great reputation earns the company a good score in this category, though they lose a few points for their lack of transparency on certain loan requirements.
Summary: PenFed Personal Loan Score by Review Category
|Rates, Fees & Other Terms||5/5|
|Requirements & Application Info||4.75/5|
|Reviews & Transparency||4.5/5|
PenFed Personal Loans vs. Popular Competitors
PenFed Credit Union
Navy Federal Credit Union
|APRs||5.99% - 17.99%||7.49% - 18%||7.24% - 17.65%|
|Loan Amounts||$500 - $50,000||$250 - $50,000||$2,500 - $100,000|
|Loan Terms||12 - 60 months||Up to 60 months (up to 180 for home improvement)||12, 24, 36, or 48, 60, 84 months|
|Minimum Credit Score||N/A*||Not disclosed*||Not disclosed*|
|Winner||PenFed Credit Union|
In order to provide the most accurate LendingClub personal loan review, WalletHub used 17 key metrics grouped into three overall sections: Terms, Requirements & Application, and Reviews & Transparency. We rated each section on a scale of 0 to 5, with 5 being the best, and then averaged the scores of the three sections to produce an overall rating for the loan.
- The “Terms” section includes information about how expensive the loan is, including rates and fees. It also takes into consideration how much consumers can borrow and how quickly they must pay it back. For companies where APR and fee ranges differ greatly by state, we used data from the most populous state serviced by the company. PenFed personal loan terms do not fluctuate significantly by state, however.
- The “Requirements & Application” section examines how easy it is to apply for a loan and how long it takes to receive the money. It also looks at exactly who is eligible to apply.
- The “Reviews & Transparency” section measures the loan provider’s reputation as well as how clearly the lender discloses its terms and requirements. This takes into account user reviews and information from watchdog organizations.
The average of these three scores reflects how close a loan offer is to WalletHub’s definition of a 5-star loan. For more information, please read WalletHub’s full methodology.