Loans » Personal Loan Lender Reviews » SoFi Personal Loan Review 2021
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SoFi Personal Loan Review 2021

SoFi offers a great deal of benefits for those who qualify for a personal loan. Read our review of SoFi Personal Loans - how do they work, what can a personal loan be used for, SoFi application Process and SoFi loan pros & cons.
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In this Review..

The original idea of SoFi was to have school alumni invest funds in refinancing recently-graduated students’ debt. SoFi has moved away from that business model and moved to a “non-traditional underwriting approach focused on lending to financially responsible individuals. SoFi uses an underwriting model that examines free cash flow, professional history and education in addition to a history of responsible bill payment to evaluate its borrowers.”

SoFi offers plenty of benefits for those who qualify for a personal loan. They also have some of the highest credit and cash flow standards. Also, SoFi offers professionals many benefits and tools that can help them become more financially independent.

SoFi is an online lender with a unique underwriting model. It's best for those who have a long, solid credit history.

APR

6.99%-14.99%

Loan Amount

$5,000 – $100,000

Term

24-60 months

Min score

680

SoFi (Social Finance) was founded in 2011 by a group of students at the Stanford Graduate School of Business in the hope of creating more funding and affordable options for education. The group of students had around 100 alumni invest in the business to cover the initial start-up costs.

They have expanded its product offerings beyond student loans to mortgages, parent loans, insurance, wealth management, checking, and personal loans. Their personal loan options are what we will cover here.

Sofi Loan Pros & Cons

As we know, each lender has its own pros & cons – here are the relevant things we found for potential borrowers:

Pros

Cons

Loan Details

Here are the basic specifications & requirements of SoFi Personal Loan :

Loan Amount Range
$5,000 – $100,000
Interest Rate Range
Fixed, 6.99%-14.99% with auto pay
Term
24-60 months
Origination Fee
None
Late Payment Fee
None
Returned Payment Fee
None
Check Processing Fee
None
Prepayment Fee
None
Minimum Credit Score
680
Funding
Up to 7 days

What Can a SoFi Personal Loan Be Used For?

SoFi offers personal loans for many different reasons including debt consolidation, home improvements, relocation, medical expenses, and auto refinancing. SoFi has many restrictions on what their personal loans can be used for.

For example, you cannot use their personal loans for purchasing real estate, business purposes, investments or purchase securities, any postsecondary education or as short-term bridge financing.

SoFi home improvement loans are for home repairs or renovations. 

The advantage of using a SoFi home improvement loan is that you do not have to use your home as collateral and you get funds much quicker with less documentation. Typically, it takes a month or more to get an equity line of credit on your home.

Moving can be expensive. There are many costs associated with moving and SoFi can help cover those moving costs.

SoFi loans for medical expenses help borrowers manage large, unexpected medical costs. This can include costs for drugs, selective surgery, and adoption.

SoFi debt consolidation is paying off one or more prior unsecured loans with the new SoFi loan. Instead of multiple payments to multiple lenders you can create one payment to one lender. The idea is that you can take a high revolving interest credit card and save money by replacing it with a low rate fixed installment.

SoFi offers variable rates as well, but still provides a term that clearly indicates when you will be out of debt. SoFi also has a debt consolidation calculator, so you can get an idea of how much you can save.

SoFi personal loans can be used to buy a new or used car or for refinancing your current auto loan. If you have good credit history you may even get a better rate. One advantage is that you do not have to use your car as collateral and you may be able save some money since you won’t need gap insurance

Application Process

SoFi takes a broader look at its borrowers than just evaluating their credit scores. SoFi requires a better understanding of their borrowers’ ability to repay.

Sofi Application Process -

Taking this into consideration, understand that SoFi will have more questions and require more documentation than some other personal loan providers.

Sofi Application Process - Sofi Application Process -

The application process begins with you creating an account and answering a few questions. SoFi will do a soft pull on your credit. A soft pull does not affect your credit report. At this point, you could be declined. Otherwise, SoFi will give you a list of options for which you can apply. If you want to move forward, SoFi will do a hard credit check and you will then be asked to upload documents to verify information.

Sofi Application Process -

Sofi Application Process - Sofi Application Process -

 

You may need to provide pay stubs, bank statements, W-2s, social security card, or state ID. You can sign loan documents online. SoFi also offers a .25% discount if you set up auto pay.

Sofi Application Process -

SoFi will usually let you know whether you are approved within one day. Because SoFi checks your documentation, it usually takes up to 7 days for your loan to be funded. SoFi may also call you directly to verify some information.

Sofi Application Process - Sofi Application Process -

SoFi is an online lender with a unique underwriting model. It's best for those who have a long, solid credit history.

APR

6.99%-14.99%

Loan Amount

$5,000 – $100,000

Term

24-60 months

Min score

680

Alternatives Lenders For Consideration

Here are our 3 choices of lenders which can use as a great alternative to SoFi personal loan: 

Lending Point is based in Kennesaw, Georgia. This online lender offers a competitive option for those with fair credit.

Lending Point personal loans have a relatively high interest rate of 15.49% to 35.99%. You can borrow $2,000 to $25,000 with a term of 24 to 48 months.

Where Lending Point stands apart from many lenders is that you can qualify for a loan if your credit score is 585 or above. The company will also consider other factors to establish your eligibility including:

  • Income
  • Financial history
  • Job history
  • Overall credit behavior.

Lending Point does not have prepayment fees, but there is a potentially costly origination fee. This can be zero to 6% depending on your location. There is also a $30 late payment fee, applied after a 15 day grace period.

This company is an online lender that offers very high loan amounts yet at low interest rates. LightStream is part of the Trust Bank group, formerly the SunTrust Bank. You can use the loan for any purpose, including home improvements, debt consolidation, etc.

LightStream does not charge fees. So, there are no late payment fees, processing fees, or pre payment fees. They even offer $100 to customers if they are unsatisfied with their loan processing experience and are willing to beat competitor’s rates by 0.1%.

If you find a lender offering a better rate than LightStream, the company will offer you a 0.1% decrease to highlight that they are a better option.

Most of the loans have a term of two to seven years, but this may be extended to 12 years for solar financing, home improvement loans, or swimming pool loans.

Prosper is the first peer-to-peer lending marketplace, a platform that matches lenders with borrowers.

Prosper marketplace is a great place to start in your personal loan search. Prosper focuses on the mass market of borrowers and their personal loans can be used for a wide range of reasons. They also have a lending arm for medical costs, Prosper Healthcare Lending. They offer personal loans for a wide variety of purposes and to a large market of borrowers. 

They do have a high origination fee while other providers do not have one. The process will take longer than with other platforms, so if you need funds quickly Prosper may not be the right place to start your search.

Compare Rates

Loan Amount

$0$100,000

Credit Score

Goal

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Loan Reviews Methodology

When it comes to choosing personal, student or car loans, we make sure that we evaluate all of the different products and services that are available for the lender we review. 

The Smart Investor’s selection of loan providers for inclusion here was made based on key areas we evaluated: loan types and loan products offered, fees, and APR. We also considering customer satisfaction and reliable external ratings such as J.D power/Trustpilot.

Cutting fees is now table stakes in the personal and student loans market. In addition, the most valuable loan products tend to offer a deep bench of options that meet a wide array of customer needs. These include a diverse range of loan amounts and terms, as well as loan structures. We also make sure that you’re going to save money by cutting down on the APR that goes along with the loans offered.