With competition heating up among money lenders, now may be the time to get that loan you have been thinking about; buy the boat, add onto the house, a sweet vacation! The choices are endless. But, where do you go for a loan? I have been an active online borrower since 2007 and here are my thoughts and experiences if you are interested.
I like online lending. A lot! The convenience of online baking is really drawing me in; I don’t have to get dressed up, make an appointment, and take time out of my day to go sit and wait for a banker. No, the game of money lending is changing. And, this Average Joe is right there borrowing money from the lenders.
This Average Joe believes it is important to have cash sitting around. And, I like having access to lines of credit when I don’t need them. Because I have learned the hard way (the VERY hard way), when you really, really need a line of credit, no one wants to give it to you.
Here are my experiences:
Lending Club– It took me less than five minutes to fill out the application and submit my banking information. Within a day I received a phone call to verify some information. A couple days later, I got a deposit. It was ridiculously simple! One of the perks with Lending Club, and hence why I ranked it at the top, was they allow you to link your United MileagePlus account and will award you airline miles to use for your United Account. This was a quick and easy way to boost some miles (almost enough for a free flight). I thought the interest rate was a little high, but it is an unsecured loan.
Marcus- Goldman Sachs is the first of the big, traditional lending houses to break into online lending and give it a try. When they rolled out their campaign, I jumped in with both feet. The application is also ridiculously easy to fill out. Within a few minutes I was done. Within two days I received a phone call to verify who I was. The process was simple, they simply asked me some questions only I would know, but, I had to scratch my head on a couple of those questions. Again, I passed and within a few days, the money was deposited into my account. At the time of my loan, Marcus was not charging any origination fee, which was sweet! More money in my pocket.
Prosper- I am a long time Prosper user, both as lender and borrower. I was one of the first lenders and everything was going good, and then the Great Recession hit. I lost some money here and have not ventured back into online lending yet. But, I am an active borrower, having taken out 7 loans since 2007. Prosper does charge an origination fee, and with that negative aspect, and the competition heating up for my business, I may be on my last loan with Prosper. Their application is also incredibly easy, however, instead of calling and doing a verbal verification, they do a mail out and you have to be around to get that piece of mail and then respond back with a code assigned to the mail out. A little trickier and more time consuming than the others.
If you need a loan and everyone does at one time or another, consider the online lenders. You may be pleasantly surprised. I know I was. Just take into consideration, these are unsecured loans and as such, they tend to have a higher interest rate than a secured loan.
Average Joe gets no money from these lenders, but, Lending Club has offered me a $100.00 referral fee for my friends if I refer them to Lending Club. And, since you are my friend, if you are interested, let me know, I will send you an invite, and hey, we can split the $100.00 referral fee.
What Average Joe is looking to put money in your pocket, this Average Joe is!