A signature loan is a type of personal loan that can be used for any number of purposes, from home improvements to debt consolidation to starting a business.
It’s an “unsecured” loan, which doesn’t require the borrower to put up any collateral to secure the funds from the lender.
Lenders of unsecured loans are typically banks, credit unions, or other lending institutions.
Also called a good faith or character loan, these loans are extended to borrowers despite the lack of collateral, because the borrower has good credit and a history of repaying their debts quickly.
Those with bad credit may need to look elsewhere for a loan.
To get approved by a lender, you’ll also likely need a good debt-to-income ratio, a permanent address where your lender can reliably find you, and low existing debt – so don’t apply for one of these loans after maxing out all your credit cards.
When you use your signature to get a loan, you’re getting a specific type of unsecured personal loan.
A secured personal loan requires using collateral, such as a house, vehicle, or business assets, and are typically sought out by people with bad credit who need to assure the lender that they’ll be able to recoup their funds one way or another.
Other types of unsecured loans come in many forms – such as credit cards and lines of credit, peer-to-peer (also stylized as P2P) loans that are increasingly found via online lending sites, and student loans, which of course are specifically for students and can’t be used for other purposes besides paying for education.
There are also short-term loans that come from private loan companies, also known as payday loans. These may not require having good credit or even collateral – just a proven means of repaying your loan, generally meaning employment.
For this kind of loan, the interest rate will depend on just how good your credit score is.
Though you probably won’t be approved for any type of unsecured loan if you have poor credit, don’t expect a low interest rate – lenders are reluctant to give good deals to people who don’t secure their loan somehow.
That means the lender will almost certainly run a credit check, and is likely to deny you if you don’t have a score of 750 or higher.
In terms of repayment, that can vary as well, and will also affect your interest rate.
Some loans can have repayment terms that last just a month, while others go between two and five years.
Loan amounts typically go no higher than $20,000 for a single loan.
You’ll usually repay the loan over a fixed term in fixed installments.
Speaking of which, a signature loan differs from a credit card or line of credit in that it’s a one-time extension of funding – when that amount is repaid, the loan is finished and you’ll need to apply for a new one in order to get more money.
A credit card or credit line, on the other hand, can be continuously drawn upon and repaid.
The final thing to consider is the possibility of needing a cosigner – unlike short-term loans from a cash advance company, banks and credit unions may ask someone with even better credit and/or means of repaying them to sign a promissory note and assume responsibility for the loan with you (only in case you fail to pay).
Once you obtain your loan, it’s up to you how to utilize it.
Popular uses include making home or business improvements, covering unexpected expenses, taking advantage of sales to buy in bulk, consolidating debt, and funding much-needed holidays and vacations.
Just be sure that you have the means to pay back the loan, and you’re free to do as you wish from there.
If you got your loan with the help of a cosigner, that person will likely be responsible for repaying your debt.
If you didn’t, it’s not like you’ll get away with not repaying your loan without penalty:
The lending institution may send a collection agency after you, or take you to court and get a judge to garnish your wages until you’re paid up.
The ramifications of not repaying your loan are huge, and your credit score will take a major hit if you default.
Try not to do that.
Visit your local bank or credit union to see what your unsecured loan options are, or visit LendGenius.com to connect with a lender quickly.
Now that’s genius.
Important Disclosures. Please Read Carefully.
Persons facing serious financial difficulties should consider other alternatives or should seek out professional financial advice.
This website is not an offer to lend. Lendgenius.com is not a lender or lending partner and does not make loan or credit decisions. Lendgenius.com connects interested persons with a lender or lending partner from its network of approved lenders and lending partners. Lendgenius.com does not control and is not responsible for the actions or inactions of any lender or lending partner, is not an agent, representative or broker of any lender or lending partner, and does not endorse any lender or lending partner. Lendgenius.com receives compensation from its lenders and lending partners, often based on a ping-tree model similar to Google AdWords where the highest available bidder is connected to the consumer. Regardless, Lendgenius.com’s service is always free to you.
This service is not available in all states. If you request to connect with a lender or lending partner in a particular state where such loans are prohibited, or in a location where Lendgenius.com does not have an available lender or lending partner, you will not be connected to a lender or lending partner. You are urged to read and understand the terms of any loan offered by any lender or lending partner, and to reject any particular loan offer that you cannot afford to repay or that includes terms that are not acceptable to you.
By submitting your information via this website, you are authorizing Lendgenius.com and/or lenders and lending partners in its network or other intermediaries to do a credit check, which may include verifying your social security number, driver license number or other identification, and a review of your creditworthiness. Credit checks are usually performed by one of the major credit bureaus such as Experian, Equifax and Trans Union, but also may include alternative credit bureaus such as Teletrack, DP Bureau or others. You also authorize Lendgenius.com to share your information and credit history with its network of approved lenders and lending partners.
Our lenders offer loans with an Annual Percentage Rate (APR) of 35.99% and below. For qualified consumers, the maximum APR (including the interest rates plus fees and other costs) is 35.99%. All loans are subject to the lender’s approval based on its own unique underwriting criteria.
Example: Loan Amount: $4,300.00, Annual Percentage Rate: 35.99%. Number of Monthly Payments: 30. Monthly Payment Amount: $219.36. Total Amount Payable: $6,581.78
Loans include a minimum repayment plan of 12 months and a maximum repayment plan of 30 months.
In some cases, you may be given the option of obtaining a loan from a tribal lender. Tribal lenders are subject to tribal and certain federal laws while being immune from state law including usury caps. If you are connected to a tribal lender, please understand that the tribal lender’s rates and fees may be higher than state-licensed lenders. Additionally, tribal lenders may require you to agree to resolve any disputes in a tribal jurisdiction. You are urged to read and understand the terms of any loan offered by any lender, whether tribal or state-licensed, and to reject any particular loan offer that you cannot afford to repay or that includes terms that are not acceptable to you.
Lender’s or Lending Partner’s Disclosure of Terms.
The lenders and lending partners you are connected to will provide documents that contain all fees and rate information pertaining to the loan being offered, including any potential fees for late-payments and the rules under which you may be allowed (if permitted by applicable law) to refinance, renew or rollover your loan. Loan fees and interest rates are determined solely by the lender or lending partner based on the lender’s or lending partner’s internal policies, underwriting criteria and applicable law. Lendgenius.com has no knowledge of or control over the loan terms offered by a lender and lending partner. You are urged to read and understand the terms of any loan offered by any lenders and lending partners and to reject any particular loan offer that you cannot afford to repay or that includes terms that are not acceptable to you.
Late Payments Hurt Your Credit Score
Please be aware that missing a payment or making a late payment can negatively impact your credit score. To protect yourself and your credit history, make sure you only accept loan terms that you can afford to repay. If you cannot make a payment on time, you should contact your lenders and lending partners immediately and discuss how to handle late payments.