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SoFi is a digital lender offering personal loans with low rates for well-qualified borrowers. While SoFi’s beginnings were in the world of student-loan refinancing, the company has since expanded to other forms of lending, investing, and financial management solutions.
If you’re in the market for a personal loan, SoFi might fit the bill. We’ll look at loan options, features, and eligibility requirements to help you figure out if SoFi is right for you.
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What Is SoFi?
SoFi is an online lender launched in 2011 that has surpassed $2 billion in loans since its inception. Aside from being a leader in student loan refinancing, SoFi offers a host of other financial products and services, including:
- Personal loans
- Private student loans
- Home loans
- Small-business financing
- Investment and retirement solutions
- SoFi Money cash management accounts
When you take out a loan or sign up for a SoFi service, you become a SoFi member. Membership offers some added benefits, depending on the specific product you sign up for. Benefits include member discounts on other SoFi products, financial planning services, local networking events and dinners, access to SoFi’s online community, and more.
SoFi prides itself on offering lower starting rates than most of its competitors. Qualifying for loans through SoFi isn’t as easy as with other lenders, but it’s worth it if you meet the credit and income requirements.
SoFi Personal Loans
SoFi offers fixed-rate, unsecured personal loans to use for a variety of individual needs, meaning that you don’t have to put up anything as collateral. SoFi customers can take out personal loans for:
- Credit card consolidation
- Debt consolidation
- Home improvements
- Relocation assistance
- Medical procedures
- Funding trips, purchases, and events
SoFi loans are intended for personal use for you and your family or household. Loans cannot be used for real estate, business, investments, securities, post-secondary education, or short-term bridge financing.
Here are the basics you need to know about SoFi personal loans:
Minimum loan amount: $5,000 (in most states)
Maximum loan amount: $100,000
Rate type: Fixed
Personal loan rates: Start at 5.99% APR* with autopay
Personal loan terms: Two to seven years
SoFi Personal Loan Rates and Terms
SoFi offers personal loans with fixed rates starting at 5.99% APR* with autopay. You typically need a good credit score and stellar credit history, among other things, to qualify for the lowest rates. A fixed rate is one that is locked in for the entire loan term.
Like most other lenders, SoFi offers an autopay rate discount of 0.25% if you set up automatic monthly payments from a bank account.
Personal loan terms range from 24 months up to seven years, depending on what you qualify for and your specific needs.
Other Features of SoFi Personal Loans
SoFi personal loans offer unique features not available from all online lenders. Here’s a look at a few of their top features.
Joint Loans: SoFi allows co-applicants for personal loans. A co-applicant is different from a co-signer. Co-applicants are equally liable for a personal loan and must reside at the same mailing address. Adding a co-applicant isn’t required, but it could help secure a better interest rate. If you plan to apply for a personal loan jointly, factor in extra time to get approved since the review process can last another week or two.
Unemployment Protection: SoFi offers protection for borrowers who find themselves without a job. You must be able to show you lost your job at no fault of your own and have a loan in good standing. Borrowers who qualify are eligible to have their loan put into forbearance in three-month increments, up to 12 months total over the life of the loan. Keep in mind that interest still accrues on your loan and will capitalize on your principal balance unless you make interest-only payments during this time.
Mobile App: SoFi members have access to a mobile app available on iOS and Android, which allows you to check your loan balance and manage payments from almost anywhere in the world.
Fees: The last thing you want to deal with when taking out a personal loan is fees. SoFi personal loans have no fees attached. You’re not charged any origination, prepayment, or late fees.
Flexible Payments: SoFi allows its members to change their monthly payment dates once a year as long as their loan is in good standing.
Related: Best Personal Loan Rates This Month
SoFi Personal Loan Requirements
Borrowers must meet some basic requirements to qualify for SoFi personal loans. To be eligible, you must:
- Be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or visa holder
- Be 18 years or older
- Reside in an eligible state
There are also financial requirements to borrow from SoFi. When making approval decisions, SoFi considers factors such as income, employment, monthly expenses vs. income, credit history, and credit score.
Although there are no published minimum requirements, SoFi employees have suggested that you’ll likely need at least a FICO credit score of 680, which is considered a good credit score. SoFi is looking for borrowers with a history of being financially responsible who have a strong monthly cash flow. Because of SoFi’s more demanding credit requirements, many borrowers are left looking at other lending options.
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SoFi Personal Loans Pros & Cons
There’s a lot to like about SoFi, but that doesn’t mean the company is right for everyone. Here are some pros and cons of SoFi personal loans.
- Competitive interest rates for those who qualify
- Loans of up to $100,000 available
- No fees
- Autopay discount
- Unemployment protection
- Mobile access to loan accounts
- Ability to change the payment date
- Relatively high credit requirements compared to other lenders
- Slower funding process
- Inability to refinance SoFi personal loans
- Inconsistent requirements and availability between states
How to Apply For a Personal Loan Through SoFi
If you’re considering SoFi for a personal loan, the good news is that the company lets you prequalify for a loan without any commitment. By prequalifying, you can see what kind of rate you’ll end up with if you decide to apply. Your credit score isn’t affected, either, because SoFi performs a soft credit pull. There’s no guarantee of final approval by prequalifying, but it’s a great way to see where you stand.
The application process is straightforward. You’ll enter some basic information during the prequalification stage. Once you find out if you qualify and your potential interest rate, you can choose to continue through the loan application process or to exit the application.
At this point, borrowers need to provide the following loan, personal, and financial information:
- Loan amount
- Desired repayment term
- Full name
- Mailing address
- Social Security number
- Income information
- Employment information
After submitting your application, SoFi will perform a hard credit inquiry, which is a deeper dive into your credit history. Hard inquiries often temporarily drop your credit score slightly.
Most decisions are reached within one day. If you are approved, SoFi typically deposits funds into bank accounts within a few business days. This is a longer timeframe than many of its competitors offer. Some lenders fund loans as soon as the same day you apply.
How to Find a Good Personal Loan
Not all personal loans are created equal. There are steps you can take to ensure you find the best personal loan to fit your needs.
Inspect Your Credit Report: Your credit history has a lot of influence over the rates you receive from lenders. You can get a free copy of your credit score every year from AnnualCreditReport.com. You can also get a free credit score from other sources such as your credit cards or bank. Scan your credit report for any errors or omissions. Work to get any mistakes fixed before applying for loans. This way, lenders will have the best available information.
If your credit isn’t up to par right now, spend time improving your credit score so you can qualify for better rates.
Shop Around: While we like SoFi personal loans, you might qualify for better rates elsewhere. Do yourself a favor and compare several lenders before making any decision. Credible is a good place to start because you can compare rates from multiple lenders in one place.
Check the Details: Most people choose loans based on the rate, but that doesn’t mean you should ignore the rest of the details. Other factors such as terms, payment options, discounts, fees, and hardship options are important to consider, too.
SoFi Personal Loans: The Bottom Line
If you have good credit and a steady income, a SoFi personal loan could be what you need to pay off high-interest credit card debt, fund projects, or reach a financial goal. It’s also a good choice if you want a loan without any fees attached or need to borrow a significant amount of money.
SoFi offers the flexibility that borrowers deserve, with protection if you lose your job and the ability to change payment dates.
Because of its stringent requirements, many potential customers won’t qualify, but SoFi is still worth a look for personal loans since you can check rates without affecting your credit score.
Flexible Terms and Low Rates – SoFi offers personal loan rates starting at 5.99% APR* with autopay and flexible terms you won’t find with other lenders. Get your rate here!