Upgrade Personal Loans Review: Low Rates and Free Credit Monitoring

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Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

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.

upgrade personal loans

Online personal loan lender Upgrade launched in April 2017, but by the end of the year it had already been named No. 1 in the personal loans category by LendingTree marketplace customers.

According to LendingTree customers, Upgrade offers one of the best personal loan borrowing experiences. Borrowers are fans of its streamlined application process and the speed at which they received their loans.

Plus, Upgrade is relatively transparent when it comes to interest rates and eligibility requirements. If you’re in the market for a personal loan, read on to learn if Upgrade personal loans could be right for you.

Upgrade personal loans and products overview

These are the rates and terms for Upgrade personal loans as of April 25, 2018. For the latest available rates, contact Upgrade.

Borrowing limits

$1,000 – $50,000

APRs

5.96% – 35.97%

Repayment terms

3 or 5 years

Origination fee

1% – 6%

Failed-payment fee

$10

Late-payment fee

$10

Upgrade is an online lender that primarily offers unsecured personal loans between $1,000 and $50,000. You can use these loans for a variety of purposes, including home improvement, debt consolidation, or a big purchase.

As unsecured loans, these personal loans don’t require any collateral. But you must meet underwriting requirements, including credit score and income (more on that below).

Upgrade accepts only individual applications, so you can’t apply with a creditworthy cosigner to boost your chances of qualifying.

Besides personal loans, Upgrade also provides free credit monitoring and educational resources.

Whether or not you’re borrowing an Upgrade personal loan, you can sign up for weekly updates on your credit score through Upgrade’s Credit Health platform, as well as get email alerts for any changes. Plus, Upgrade provides personalized tips for building your credit.

upgrade free tools

Image credit: Upgrade

Note that Upgrade’s Credit Health uses VantageScore 3.0. This is a reputable credit score system, but it’s not the only one out there. For a fuller picture of your score, you might also take advantage of other credit monitoring services.

For more information, you can check out Upgrade’s Credit Health Insights. These articles include tips on how to build credit and improve your money habits.

Upgrade interest rates and fees

Upgrade personal loans come with APRs between 5.96% and 35.97%. Your rate ultimately depends on your loan amount, repayment term, and creditworthiness.

All interest rates are fixed, so they won’t change over the life of your loan. You can choose a repayment term of 36 or 60 months.

All loans come with an origination fee between 1% and 6%. On a $10,000 loan, for instance, you could pay an origination fee as little as $100 or as high as $600.

Upgrade also charges a $10 fee if your payment fails, as well as $10 for a payment later than 15 days.

Before finalizing your application, use a personal loan calculator to break down the terms of your loan. Enter your loan amount, interest rate, and repayment term so you have a clearer picture.

And if you’re looking to borrow, you’ll appreciate Upgrade’s competitive rates and flexible terms. The only real downside is that Upgrade charges an origination fee.

So even though Upgrade personal loans could be a good choice, you should still check your rates with multiple lenders to find an offer with the lowest costs of borrowing.

Using the Upgrade online platform

As an online lender, Upgrade offers an easy-to-use online application. Before you get started, you can get an instant rate quote to see if you prequalify.

check your upgrade rate

Image credit: Upgrade

You’ll enter a few basic pieces of information, such as your name, address, and annual income. Plus, you’ll create an Upgrade account.

This rate check won’t hurt your credit, as it only involves a soft credit pull. Upgrade will only run a hard credit check if you choose an offer and submit a full application.

If you like any of the offers, you can submit a full application. You’ll enter personal information, as well as provide supporting documentation to verify your residency, bank account, and income.

upgrade basic information form

Image credit: Upgrade

According to Upgrade, your funds will be sent to your bank account within one business day of clearing the verification process.

Once your bank processes the transaction, the money will be available for you to use.

Upgrade personal loans eligibility requirements

While most lenders don’t advertise what credit score you need to qualify for a loan, Upgrade makes its eligibility requirements clear.

You need a credit score of 620 to be eligible for a personal loan. Upgrade also takes other factors into account, such as your income, credit usage, loan amount, and loan term.

Besides meeting underwriting requirements, you must also meet these criteria:

  • Be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or someone living in the U.S. on a valid visa
  • Be at least 18 years old (some states have a higher age requirement)
  • Have a verifiable bank account
  • Have a valid email address

Finally, you must live in a state where Upgrade offers loans. You aren’t eligible if you live in:

  • Connecticut
  • Colorado
  • Iowa
  • Massachusetts
  • Maryland
  • Vermont
  • West Virginia

Not only is Upgrade transparent about what credit score you need to qualify, but the company also helps you track your credit.

Upgrade customer reviews

Customers appreciate Upgrade’s competitive interest rates and prompt service. It has an “A” rating of 92% from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and a rating of 4.8 out of 5 from LendingTree.

One Upgrade customer left a review on BBB stating: “This could not have been easier! Filled out the application on Saturday and approved on Tuesday. I am impressed with the technology that drives this. I will recommend Upgrade wholeheartedly.”

Another customer described the Upgrade borrowing process on BBB: “Very easy to deal with. Responded quickly and had money in the bank within [two] business days.”

The company does have a few negative reviews, with one customer complaining on the BBB site that they got preapproved and then later denied. Keep in mind that a preapproval offer doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll qualify for a loan. You will need to apply before you can fully qualify.

Beyond these customer reviews, you can also get more information from Upgrade customer service. Call Upgrade at 855-997-3100 or email support@upgrade.com. When I emailed customer service with loan questions, I got a response just 10 minutes later.

Finally, you can learn about company developments on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.

Ultimately, Upgrade is a modern and reputable online lender with a great reputation in the personal loan lending space. Although it’s always worth shopping around for the lowest rates, Upgrade is likely to be one of your best options for a personal loan.

Note: Student Loan Hero has independently collected the above information related to Upgrade personal loans. Upgrade has neither provided nor reviewed the information shared in this article.

Interested in a personal loan?

Here are the top personal loan lenders of 2018!
LenderRates (APR)Loan Amount 
1 Includes AutoPay discount. Important Disclosures for SoFi.

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Personal LoansFixed rates from 5.950% APR to 14.490% APR (with AutoPay). Variable rates from 5.825% APR to 14.365% APR (with AutoPay). SoFi rate ranges are current as of May 3, 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 5.825% APR assu[mes current 1-month LIBOR rate of 1.90% plus 4.175% 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.
  2. 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 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.

Citizens Bank Disclosures

  1. Personal Loan Rate Disclosure: Fixed interest rates range from 4.99% – 16.24% (4.99% – 16.24% APR) based on applicable terms. Lowest rates shown 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.

* 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 - $50,000
Check rate nowon SLH's secure site
5.83% - 14.74%1$5,000 - $100,000
Check rate nowon SLH's secure site
5.96% - 35.97%*$1,000 - $50,000Visit Upgrade
8.00% - 25.00%$5,000 - $35,000
Check rate nowon SLH's secure site
4.99% - 29.99%$10,000 - $35,000Visit FreedomPlus
4.99% - 16.24%2$5,000 - $50,000Visit Citizens
15.49% - 34.49%$2,000 - $25,000Visit LendingPoint
5.99% - 35.89%$1,000 - $40,000Visit LendingClub
5.49% - 18.24%$5,000 - $75,000Visit Earnest
9.95% - 35.99%$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.