RISE Credit Review: What You Must Know Before Applying

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RISE Credit reviews

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When I graduated from school and started working, my salary was $30,000. In an area with a high cost of living, that meant my income just covered my rent, utilities, and other essentials; there wasn’t much left over for fun events or savings.

Living so close to the bone made me vulnerable. When my unreliable car broke down — again — I couldn’t afford the $600 repair bill. I didn’t have any other way to get to work, so I was feeling pretty desperate.

I spent a lot of time researching payday loans and quick personal loans but ultimately decided to use a credit card instead. It took me a year to pay it off, but it was a lot cheaper than other alternatives.

My situation isn’t uncommon. According to the Federal Reserve, 44 percent of Americans can’t come up with $400 in an emergency. That means nearly half of the country is just one unexpected car repair or medical bill away from financial disaster. Because many also have poor credit, using a credit card like I did isn’t always a viable solution.

Instead, if you’re in a tough spot and need money fast, you have likely considered payday loans or personal loans. One of the newest personal loan lenders that’s getting a lot of traction is RISE. The company says it can get you the cash you need in as little as 24 hours, but in RISE credit reviews, customers say you’ll pay a premium for it.

What is RISE?

RISE offers installment loans and lines of credit to people who need money quickly. The company specifically targets non-prime customers, meaning those without good credit or a lengthy credit history. If you fit into this category, getting other forms of credit, such as a credit card or bank loan, can be difficult — if not outright impossible.

RISE promises quick and easy online applications, rapid approvals, and fast disbursement of your loan. You can use RISE credit loans when you’re facing a financial emergency, such as a car repair or overdue rent payment.

As of October 2017, RISE is only available in 17 states: Alabama, California, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, and Wisconsin.

How RISE works

To apply for a loan with RISE, you must be at least 18, live in one of the states listed above, have a job or regular source of income, and have an active checking account. You will have to upload proof of income, such as recent pay stubs, to apply. The whole process takes just a few minutes.

Within seconds of submitting your application, RISE will give you an immediate approval or denial. Unlike other forms of loans, where you specify the amount you want to borrow before submitting your application, RISE gives you a maximum approval amount. You can borrow between $500 and $5,000, depending on your credit and income.

You can take out a loan for the maximum amount you’re approved for, but depending on the state you live in, you might be able to take out a smaller loan. That means if you’re approved for $5,000 but only need $3,000, you can opt to take out the lower amount.

You might be tempted to borrow the extra money just in case you need it, but that can be a costly mistake. Instead, borrow only what you need to reduce the amount of interest you pay over time.

Once RISE approves your application and you select your loan amount, the company will transfer the funds electronically to your bank account in one business day. If you want a check instead, it could take between seven and 10 business days to receive it.

RISE credit loans are expensive

Sounds easy enough, right? You spend five minutes completing an application, select how much you want to borrow, and it’s deposited in your account in as little as 24 hours.

However, it’s not so simple when it comes to cost. RISE itself admits that it’s not the cheapest form of credit. The annual percentage rate (APR) on RISE loans can be as high as 299%. You might be willing to overlook that high rate when you’re desperate for cash, but a RISE loan can cost you thousands over time.

For example, if you lived in Idaho and borrowed $1,250 at a 299% rate, you would pay over $5,200 in interest alone, assuming a 22-month repayment term and biweekly payments.

By comparison, data released from the Federal Reserve in August 2017 show that the average APR for credit cards is 13.08%. If you charged $1,250 on a credit card with that rate and paid it off in 22 months, you’d pay back about $1,500 in total. Using a credit card instead of a loan from RISE would save you around $5,000.

RISE vs. payday loans

Although you’ll end up paying thousands more than you borrowed with RISE, it can still be a better option than other forms of credit, such as predatory payday loans.

A payday loan is a short-term, high-cost loan for small amounts. They’re used to cover your expenses until your next payday, which is usually when the loan is due. Payday loans often have higher interest rates than even those that RISE offers. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the APR on payday loans is often around 400%.

You’ll also owe that money much sooner than you would with RISE. With payday loans, your repayment term can be as short as two weeks, which means you’ll have to scramble to come up with the cash or owe even more in fees and penalties. Once you take out a payday loan, it can be difficult to break the cycle of borrowing.

While RISE is expensive, you’ll likely have more time to repay your loan at a slightly lower rate. If you have limited options, RISE can be a wiser choice than higher-interest debt such as payday loans.

What customers say in RISE credit reviews

RISE does offer many different ways to contact customer service. Email them via the form on their website or mail a letter to: RISE, Attn: Customer Support, P.O. Box 101808, Fort Worth, TX 76185

You can also reach them by phone at (866) 580-1226.

Although RISE makes it easy to contact representatives, its efforts don’t seem to resonate with customers. When it comes to RISE loans, reviews are mixed. According to the Better Business Bureau, 48 percent of RISE credit reviews are negative.

Customers regularly cite high interest rates, difficulty applying extra payments, and confusion about payment plans as common issues. Some reviewers also noted that the company was inflexible about payments when the customer faced a financial difficulty, such as a job loss.

For the 52 percent that reported a positive experience, customers said the application process was fast and easy, and that they received their funds quickly.

5 alternatives to RISE credit loans

When it comes to RISE loans, reviews clearly mention that the loans are a very expensive form of credit. While these loans can be better than expensive payday loans or cash advances, it’s still a smart decision to explore and compare your other options, first.

If you’re short on cash and need money quickly, consider these alternatives:

  1. Paycheck advance: Go to your human resources representative and ask if you can have an advance on your paycheck. That means you’ll get a portion of your next paycheck early so you can pay your bills.
  2. Use a credit card: Depending on your credit, some lenders might approve you for a credit card. If you’re on a tight budget, reserve your credit card for real emergencies and always pay off your balance as quickly as possible.
  3. Ask for help: It might be embarrassing to ask for help, but asking for assistance is much better than entering the high-interest loan trap. Ask your friends and family for whatever they can afford, and pay them back when you can.
  4. Seek emergency aid: If you’re in a desperate situation and aren’t sure where to turn, reach out to charitable organizations such as United Way or Catholic Charities. Some nonprofits offer short-term financial assistance, such as rent payment, gas cards, or a low-interest loan to help you get back on your feet.
  5. Pick up a side hustle: If you just can’t earn any more money at your current job, picking up a side gig can be a lifesaver. Find a side gig you can start right away so you get the money you need quickly.

Our verdict

When you’re desperate for cash, lenders like RISE can be tempting. But with RISE credit loans, reviews show that you’ll end up paying thousands more over the length of your repayment. Although RISE credit loans are better than payday loans, consider all the options available to you and see what’s most cost-effective.

If you’re living hand to mouth and don’t have the money for an emergency fund, find out how to break the payday loan cycle once and for all.

Interested in a personal loan?

Here are the top personal loan lenders of 2018!
LenderAPR RangeLoan Amount 
1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Personal Loans: Fixed rates from 6.990% APR to 14.865% APR (with AutoPay). Variable rates from 6.255% APR to 12.555% APR (with AutoPay). SoFi rate ranges are current as of September 1, 2018 and are subject to change without notice. Not all rates and amounts available in all states. See Personal Loan eligibility details. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, to qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including evaluation of your credit worthiness, years of professional experience, income and other factors. See APR examples and terms. Interest rates on variable rate loans are capped at 14.95%. Lowest variable rate of 6.255% APR assumes current index rate derived from the 1-month LIBOR of 2.08% plus 4.425% margin minus 0.25% AutoPay discount. For the SoFi variable rate loan, the 1-month LIBOR index will adjust monthly and the loan payment will be re-amortized and may change monthly. APRs for variable rate loans may increase after origination if the LIBOR index increases. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account.

    To check the rates and terms you qualify for, SoFi conducts a soft credit pull that will not affect your credit score. However, if you choose a product and continue your application, we will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit pull.See Consumer Licenses.
  2. Minimum Credit Score: Not all applicants who meet SoFi’s minimum credit score requirements are approved for a personal loan. In addition to meeting SoFi’s minimum eligibility criteria, applicants must also meet other credit and underwriting requirements to qualify.
  3. SoFi Personal Loans are not available to residents of MS. Maximum interest rate on loans for residents of AK and WY is 9.99% APR, for residents of IL with loans over $40,000 is 8.99% APR, for residents of TX is 9.99% APR on terms greater than 5 years, for residents of CO, CT, HI, VA, SC is 11.99% APR, and for residents of ME is 12.24% APR. Personal loans not available to residents of MI who already have a student loan with SoFi. Personal Loans minimum loan amount is $5,000. Residents of AZ, MA, and NH have a minimum loan amount of $10,001. Residents of KY have a minimum loan amount of $15,001. Residents of PA have a minimum loan amount of $25,001. Variable rates not available to residents of AK, TX, VA, WY, or for residents of IL for loans greater than $40,000.
  4. Terms and Conditions Apply: SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet SoFi’s underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. To qualify for the lowest rate, you must have a responsible financial history and meet other conditions. If approved, your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed above and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, years of experience, income and other factors. Rates and Terms are subject to change at anytime without notice and are subject to state restrictions. SoFi refinance loans are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that the federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment or PAYE. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Financing Law License No. 6054612. SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp., NMLS # 1121636. (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org)

2 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for Payoff.

Payoff Disclosures

  1. All loans are subject to credit review and approval. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, credit usage and history. Currently loans are not offered in: MA, MS, NE, NV, OH, and WV.

3 Important Disclosures for FreedomPlus.

FreedomPlus Disclosures

  1. All loans available through FreedomPlus.com are made by Cross River Bank, a New Jersey State Chartered Commercial Bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender. All loan and rate terms are subject to eligibility restrictions, application review, credit score, loan amount, loan term, lender approval, and credit usage and history. Eligibility for a loan is not guaranteed. Loans are not available to residents of all states – please call a FreedomPlus representative for further details. The following limitations, in addition to others, shall apply: FreedomPlus does not arrange loans in: (i) Arizona under $10,500; (ii) Massachusetts under $6,500, (iii) Ohio under $5,500, and (iv) Georgia under $3,500. Repayment periods range from 24 to 60 months. The range of APRs on loans made available through FreedomPlus is 4.99% to a maximum of 29.99%. APR. The APR calculation includes all applicable fees, including the loan origination fee. For Example, a four year $20,000 loan with an interest rate of 15.49% and corresponding APR of 18.34% would have an estimated monthly payment of $561.60 and a total cost payable of $7,948.13. To qualify for a 4.99% APR loan, a borrower will need excellent credit on a loan of $15,000 with a term of 24 months, and qualify for at least two of the following discounts: (1) add a co-borrower who has sufficient income; (2) use at least fifty percent of the loan proceeds to directly pay off existing debt; or (3) show proof of having at least forty-thousand dollars in retirement savings – contact FreedomPlus for further details.

4 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.

Citizens Bank Disclosures

  1. Personal Loan Rate DisclosureFixed interest rates from 6.49% – 19.49% (6.49% – 19.49% APR) based on applicable terms. Lowest rates range from 5.99%-18.99% (5.99%-18.99% APR), are for eligible applicants, require a 3-year repayment term, and include our Loyalty and Automatic Payment Discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty Discount and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. Subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.
  2. Loyalty Discount: The borrower will be eligible for a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their loan if the borrower has a qualifying account in existence with us at the time the borrower has submitted a completed application authorizing us to review their credit request for the loan. The following are qualifying accounts: any checking account, savings account, money market account, certificate of deposit, automobile loan, home equity loan, home equity line of credit, mortgage, credit card account, student loans or other personal loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. Please note, our checking and savings account options are only available in the following states: CT, DE, MA, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI and VT. This discount will be reflected in the interest rate and Annual Percentage Rate (APR) disclosed in the Truth-In-Lending Disclosure that will be provided to the borrower once the loan is approved. Limit of one Loyalty Discount per loan, and discount will not be applied to prior loans. The Loyalty Discount will remain in effect for the life of the loan.
  3. Automatic Payment Discount: Borrowers will be eligible to receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their Citizens Bank Personal Loan during such time as payments are required to be made and our loan servicer is authorized to automatically deduct payments each month from any bank account the borrower designates. If our loan servicer is unable to successfully withdraw the automatic deductions from the designated account two or more times within any 12-month period, the borrower will no longer be eligible for this discount.

5 Important Disclosures for LendingPoint.

LendingPoint Disclosures

  • Loan approval is not guaranteed. Actual loan offers and loan amounts, terms and annual percentage rates (“APR”) may vary based upon LendingPoint’s proprietary scoring and underwriting system’s review of your credit, financial condition, other factors, and supporting documents or information you provide. Origination or other fees from 0% to 6% may apply depending upon your state of residence. Upon LendingPoint’s final underwriting approval to fund a loan, said funds are often sent via ACH the next non-holiday business day. LendingPoint makes loan offers from $2,000 to $25,000, at rates ranging from a low of 15.49% APR to a high of 34.49% APR, with terms from 24 to 48 months. The loan offer(s) shown reflect a 28 day payment cycle which is being offered as a courtesy as many of our customers are paid on a biweekly schedule and thus this may better align the loan payment dates with your actual income receipt schedule.

6 Important Disclosures for LendingClub.

LendingClub Disclosures

All loans made by WebBank, Member FDIC. Your actual rate depends upon credit score, loan amount, loan term, and credit usage & history. The APR ranges from 6.16% to 35.89%. For example, you could receive a loan of $6,000 with an interest rate of 7.99% and a 5.00% origination fee of $300 for an APR of 11.51%. In this example, you will receive $5,700 and will make 36 monthly payments of $187.99. The total amount repayable will be $6,767.64. Your APR will be determined based on your credit at time of application. The origination fee ranges from 1% to 6% and the average origination fee is 5.49% as of Q1 2017. There is no down payment and there is never a prepayment penalty. Closing of your loan is contingent upon your agreement of all the required agreements and disclosures on the www.lendingclub.com website. All loans via LendingClub have a minimum repayment term of 36 months or longer.

7 Important Disclosures for Earnest.

Earnest Disclosures

  1. Earnest does not lend in Alabama, Delaware, Kentucky, Nevada, or Rhode Island.

8 Important Disclosures for Avant.

Avant Disclosures

* The actual rate and loan amount that a customer qualifies for may vary based on credit determination and other factors. Funds are generally deposited via ACH for delivery next business day if approved by 4:30pm CT Monday-Friday. Avant branded credit products are issued by WebBank, member FDIC.

** Example: A $5,700 loan with an administration fee of 4.75% and an amount financed of $5,429.25, repayable in 36 monthly installments, would have an APR of 29.95% and monthly payments of $230.33

* Important Disclosures for Upgrade Bank.

Upgrade Bank Disclosures

* Your loan terms are not guaranteed and are subject to our verification and review process. You may be asked to provide additional documents to enable us to verify your income and your identity. This rate includes an Autopay APR reduction of 0.5%. By enrolling in Autopay your payments will be automatically deducted from you bank account. Selecting Autopay is optional. Annual Percentage Rate is inclusive of a loan origination fee, which is deducted from the loan proceeds. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may increase the cost of your fixed rate loan. All loans made by WebBank, member FDIC. Please refer to Upgrade’s Terms of Use and Borrower Agreement for all terms, conditions and requirements.

** Accept your loan offer and your funds will be sent to your bank via ACH within one (1) business day of clearing necessary verifications. Availability of the funds is dependent on how quickly your bank processes this transaction. From the time of approval, funds should be available within four (4) business days.

7.73% – 29.99%$1,000 - $50,000Visit Upstart
6.26% – 14.87%1$5,000 - $100,000Visit SoFi
6.99% – 35.97%*$1,000 - $50,000Visit Upgrade
8.00% – 25.00%2$5,000 - $35,000Visit Payoff
4.99% – 29.99%3$10,000 - $35,000Visit FreedomPlus
5.99% – 18.99%4$5,000 - $50,000Visit Citizens
15.49% – 34.49%5$2,000 - $25,000Visit LendingPoint
6.16% – 35.89%6$1,000 - $40,000Visit LendingClub
6.99% – 18.24%7$5,000 - $75,000Visit Earnest
9.95% – 35.99%8$2,000 - $35,000Visit Avant
Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print understand what you are buying, and consult a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Published in Loans, Review