Personal loan interest rates climb, but 5-year fixed rate remains lower than same period last year
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Borrowers with good credit seeking personal loans in the past seven days have prequalified for higher rates for 3 year fixed rate loans and 5 year fixed rate loans compared to the previous seven days.
For borrowers with a credit score of 720 or higher who have used the Credible Marketplace to select a lender between December 13th and 19th:
- 3-year fixed-rate loan rates averaged 11.30%, down from 11.05% the previous seven days and up from 11.29% a year ago.
- 5-year fixed-rate loan rates averaged 14.38%, down from 14.23% the previous seven days and down from 15.14% a year ago.
Personal loans have become a popular way to consolidate and pay off credit card debt and other loans. They can also be used to cover unforeseen expenses like medical bills, deal with a major purchase, or finance home improvement projects.
Personal loan interest rates can be volatile from day to day, with movements of 1% which are not uncommon. However, the increases over the past seven days have been gradual and borrowers can still get a good deal on a personal loan. The current interest rates on personal loans can be particularly attractive to borrowers looking to consolidate their credit card debt. The average interest rate on credit cards is around 17% (based on Federal Reserve data), and those with average or below average credit can have much higher interest rates.
Whether a personal loan is right for you often depends on several factors, including what rate you may qualify for. Comparing several lenders and their rates could help you get the best possible personal loan for your needs.
It’s always a good idea to shop around on sites like Credible to understand how much you qualify for and choose the best option for you.
Here are the latest trends in personal loan interest rates from the Credible Market, updated weekly.
Trends in weekly personal loan rates
The graph above shows the average prequalified rates for borrowers with a credit score of 720 or higher who have used the Credible Marketplace to select a lender.
For the month of November 2021:
- 3-year personal loan rates average 11.32%, up from 11.33% in October.
- 5-year personal loan rates averaged 14.25%, up from 13.85% in October.
Personal loan rates vary widely depending on the credit rating and the length of the loan. If you are curious about what type of personal loan rate you might qualify for, you can use an online tool like Credible to compare options from different private lenders. Checking your rates will not affect your credit score.
In November, the average prequalified rate used by borrowers was:
- 8.92% for borrowers with a credit score of 780 or better choosing a 3-year loan
- 29.04% for borrowers with a credit score of less than 600 choosing a 5-year loan
All the lenders in the Credible market offer fixed rate loans at competitive rates. Since lenders use different methods to assess borrowers, it is a good idea to apply for personal loan rates from multiple lenders so that you can compare your options.
Current rates for personal loans by credit score
Depending on factors such as your credit rating, the type of personal loan you are looking for, and the loan repayment term, the interest rate may differ.
As the table above shows, a good credit rating can mean a lower interest rate, and rates tend to be higher on longer term, fixed interest rate loans.
How to get a lower interest rate
There are many factors that influence the interest rate a lender might offer you on a personal loan. But there are steps you can take to increase your chances of getting a lower interest rate. Here are some tactics to try.
Increase credit score
Generally, people with a higher credit score are eligible for lower interest rates. Steps that can help you improve your credit score over time include:
- Pay your bills on time. Payment history is the most important factor in your credit score. Pay all of your bills on time for the amount owed.
- Check your credit report. Examine your credit report to make sure there are no errors. If you find any errors, dispute them with the credit bureau.
- Reduce your credit utilization rate. Paying off credit card debt can improve this important credit scoring factor.
- Avoid opening new credit accounts. Only ask for and open the credit accounts that you really need. Too many inquiries about your credit report in a short period of time could lower your credit score.
Choose a shorter loan term
The repayment terms for a personal loan can vary from one to several years. Typically, shorter terms come with lower interest rates because the lender’s money is at risk for a shorter period.
If your financial situation allows it, applying for a shorter term could help you get a lower interest rate. Keep in mind that the shorter term doesn’t just benefit the lender: choosing a shorter repayment term will pay less interest over the life of the loan.
Get a co-signer
You may be familiar with the concept of co-signer if you have student loans. If your credit isn’t good enough to qualify for the best interest rates on personal loans, finding a co-signer with good credit could help you get a lower interest rate.
Remember that if you do not repay the loan, your co-signer will be responsible for repaying it. And co-signing for a loan could also affect their credit score.
Compare rates from different lenders
Before applying for a personal loan, it’s a good idea to shop around and compare the offers of several different lenders to get the lowest rates. Online lenders usually offer the most competitive rates and can disburse your loan faster than a physical establishment.
But don’t worry, comparing rates and terms doesn’t have to be a tedious process.
Credible makes it easy. Just enter the amount you want to borrow and you can compare multiple lenders to choose the one that’s right for you.
Credible is a multi-lender marketplace that allows consumers to discover the financial products best suited to their particular situation. Credible’s integrations with major lenders and credit bureaus allow consumers to quickly compare accurate and personalized loan options – without putting their personal information at risk or affecting their credit score. The Credible Marketplace offers an unmatched customer experience as evidenced by more than 4,500 positive reviews on Trustpilot and a 4.7 / 5 Octoberscore.