A personal loan can be a great way to get the cash you need to consolidate debt, finance a home improvement project or make a large purchase. The average interest rate on a two-year personal loan is around 10.6 percent, according to the Federal Reserve, compared to the average credit card interest rate of about 17.7 percent.
Whether you’re interested in borrowing from a bank, credit union or an online lender, the process is mostly the same. But getting a loan the smart way requires a little extra research and care to make sure you get the best offer available.
How to get a personal loan in 8 steps
- Run the numbers
- Check your credit score
- Consider your options
- Choose your loan type
- Shop around for the best personal loan rates
- Pick a lender and apply
- Provide necessary documentation
- Accept the loan and start making payments