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Monday, October 25th
Upstart was founded by former Google employees, who use artificial intelligence (AI) to help people unlock borrowing opportunities through affordable credit. Through this platform they can offer high loan approval rates, which means you have a greater chance of being accepted for a home improvement loan.
Unique application process
Upstart starts out with a fairly standard application process. You first select the purpose of your loan, the amount you'd like to borrow, your contact information, and your birthdate. From there, the questions get a little more unique compared with other home improvement loan providers. What's your highest level of education? Where did you go to school, what did you study, and when did (or will) you graduate? How much money do you currently have in bank accounts and investments?
Upstart asks these types of questions because they calculate risk differently from most lenders. They take your educational background and earning potential into account when determining your eligibility for a loan. Although educational information is collected as part of Upstart's rate check process, neither Upstart nor its bank partners have a minimum educational attainment requirement in order to be eligible for a loan. As their About Us page states, "With a smarter credit model, lenders could approve almost twice as many borrowers, with fewer defaults." In other words, Upstart makes home improvement loans accessible to more people - and at a lower risk to the financial institutions that provide them.
Home improvement loan qualifications
You should have a minimum credit score of 580 in order to qualify for a home improvement loan from Upstart (although, if you don't have sufficient credit history to produce a score, Upstart will still let you qualify for a home improvement loan). You can't have any bankruptcies or accounts currently in collections, past due or delinquent, or that have been wholly charged-off in the last three years. You'll also be found ineligible for a loan if you have more than 6 inquiries on your credit report in the last 6 months - but that doesn't count any that are related to mortgages, vehicle loans, or student loans. Again, this is part of how Upstart measures risk, so that they can make home improvement loans available to more people.
Loans from $1,000 - $50,000
You could receive a loan offer anywhere from $1,000 to $50,000. Your loan amount will be determined based on your credit, income, and certain other information provided in your loan application. Not all applicants will qualify for the full amount. Loans are not available in West Virginia or Iowa. The minimum loan amount in MA is $7,000. The minimum loan amount in Ohio is $6,000. The minimum loan amount in NM is $5100. The minimum loan amount in GA is $3,100.
Competitive loan rates and terms
What rates and terms can you expect with a home improvement loan from Upstart? All loans funded through this service have repayment terms of either 3 or 5 years. They advertise a range of interest rates, and we found them to be very competitive with other lenders in the industry. Upstart's origination fee varies from 0-8% of the loan amount, and is deducted from the proceeds of your loan. In other words, if you request a $10,000 home improvement loan and you're charged an origination fee of 3%, you'll get $9,700 deposited to your bank account.
Get your money in 1 day
If your application is approved and you accept your loan terms, you could have your money deposited by the next business day. If you accept your loan by 5pm EST (not including weekends or holidays), you will receive your funds the next business day. Loans used to fund education related expenses are subject to a 3 business day wait period between loan acceptance and funding in accordance with federal law.
Fantastic customer satisfaction
Upstart sets the standard when it comes to customer satisfaction. The company has an "A" rating and accreditation from the Better Business Bureau, but even more impressive is the fact that with over 8,500 client reviews, 99% of them gave Upstart a rating of 4 or 5 stars. Customers said that their experience was simple, easy, and straightforward, and many people expressed their delight at having loan funds deposited within a day.
There's a lot that we like about Upstart. It's refreshing to see a lender use new methodology that looks at your big picture as a borrower, including your education and employment potential, when determining if you're a good candidate for a home improvement loan. Plus, there's no arguing with Upstart's loyal base of happy clients. Combined with their innovative approach to broaden lending availability, and competitive loan terms, Upstart earns our highest rating.
If you're looking to finally renovate that kitchen straight out of the 70's, or build on the extra bedroom you need, chances are good that you don't just have the cash sitting around to get it done. Most homeowners use a home improvement loan to access the funds required to turn their house into a "home sweet home" .
There are several types of financing that can be used to make improvements or repairs. These depend on a variety of factors: the amount of equity you have already built up in your property, your credit history, and the amount of money you need.
If you have little equity in your home - in other words, you haven't made many payments on your mortgage yet, and you didn't put down much money at closing - you'll most likely use a home improvement loan to fund your projects. These loans are based on your overall credit history; the higher your credit score and the lower your debts, the better rates and terms you'll get.
On the other hand, if you've built up equity in your home, you'll be able to access three other types of home improvement loans: cash-out refinancing, a home equity loan (HEL), and a home equity line of credit (HELOC). Each type has its ins and outs, and not every loan type is appropriate for a particular borrowing need. For example, a cash-out refinance is great if you can reset your mortgage at a much lower interest rate - but it also comes with closing costs (which can sometimes be rolled back into the loan amount). HELOCs let you take money out as-needed, but interest rates can be higher than some home equity loans and are often adjustable: your payments may increase in the future.
As you can see, choosing a home improvement loan leaves you with some research to do. While considering your options, here are some guidelines to help clarify which service you should use:
TopConsumerReviews.com has evaluated and ranked the best options for home improvement loans available today. We're confident that this information will help you get the money you need for your next big project!
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