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How Hard Is it to Get a Personal Loan?

Personal loans generally aren’t hard to get and are available from credit unions, banks, and online lenders.
There are various types of personal loans to consider, depending on how much money you need to borrow. No matter which type of personal loan you choose, you’ll want to start by comparing interest rates and loan terms.
For over 60 years, the Credit Union of Southern California (CU SoCal) has provided quick pre-approvals, no application or funding fees, and other great benefits for our valued Members.
Call CU SoCal at 866.287.6225 to schedule a no-obligation loan consultation, or apply online today!

Get Started on Your Personal Loan!

What are Personal Loans?

A personal loan is a loan provided to an individual by a lender for an unspecified use. In other words, a personal loan can be used to purchase whatever you need, with no restrictions.

What Can Personal Loans Be Used For?

Some common uses for a personal loan include making home repairs, paying for college tuition, medical bills, a wedding, funeral costs, car repairs, and unexpected expenses.

How to Get a Personal Loan

You may want to explore several lenders and shop for the interest rate and loan terms that work for your unique situation.
An easy way to get started is to talk to a representative at the credit union or bank where you have your accounts.
Once you’ve found the loan that you want, you’ll choose a lender and complete a loan application.
The lender will look at your credit score and will ask you to provide documentation such as proof of identity, tax returns, W2s, and proof of employment.
The lender will use this information to determine if you are eligible to borrow the amount you need. See our blog post how to get a person loan.

Credit Score Needed to Get a Personal Loan

According to the credit bureau Experian, It's possible to get a personal loan with a lower credit score, but a FICO® Score that falls in the good range (670-739) or higher will give you access to a broader array of lenders and better interest rates. For more information, see our blog about the credit score needed for a personal loan.

Getting a Personal Loan With Bad Credit

While a person’s credit score is the major factor most lenders will look at in considering loan eligibility, credit unions tend to have more flexibility than banks when it comes to providing personal loans to people with bad credit or no credit.
At CU SoCal, we know you’re more than a credit score and will do everything we can to help our Members get a quick, easy loan approval.

If you have bad credit or no credit history consider applying for a Credit Builder Loan.

With the CU SoCal Credit-Builder Loan, a share certificate for $1,000 is established in the borrower’s name, and while you do not receive funds up-front, after making payments for one year you receive $1,000 cash.
A Credit Builder loan builds your credit score because your payments are reported each month to all three major credit bureaus. Credit scoring companies, including FICO, will see the loan in your report and give you points for having added to your credit mix and on-time payments.
Find out more about Personal Loans for Bad Credit.

Are Personal Loans Worth it?

When you need cash in a hurry to cover an emergency expense, such as a car repair, home repair, or to pay for a funeral, a personal loan is a good choice
However, for non-emergency expenses it can be more cost-effective to save-up the funds you need, rather than take on new debt or pay interest on a large loan amount.
Personal Loan Alternatives
If you’ve been turned down for a personal loan due to bad credit or you just aren’t sure that a personal loan is right for you, here are some personal loan alternatives to consider:
Nonprofits, Charities and Religious Organizations: Community and religion-based organizations offer resources including food banks, clothing, and emergency housing options. Many can help with work opportunities and financial assistance.
Explore Options to Pay-off Bills: It could be a good time to consider debt consolidation to pay off or pay-down your bills, especially if you have large outstanding balances. Your credit union or bank can provide you with options, so you can pay-off bills at a lower interest rate, freeing up money to use on other expenses.
Paycheck/Payroll Advances: Check with your employer to see if the company has a policy that would let them pay you in advance of your usual payday. If this option is available, be sure to ask if there are fees associated with it.
Family and Friends: Borrowing money from a family Member or friend can be a quick way to get the money you need if you have poor credit and don’t qualify for a bank loan. While borrowing from family or friends can be tempting, it’s important to create a document stating the conditions and duration of the loan and whether or not you are expected to pay interest, and if so, at what rate. Both the lender and borrower should agree to the terms and sign the document. Loans from family and friends have emotional attachments that could negatively impact your relationships.

Where to Get a Personal Loan

Personal loans are offered by credit unions, banks, and online lenders. As you start to shop for a loan you’ll find that each lender will have unique interest rates, loan terms, and fees, and possibly a prepayment penalty, so be sure to shop around and get all the details before you sign.
Banks: Traditional banks tend to have higher credit score and income requirements than credit unions. And if you have bad credit, getting a good interest rate on a personal loan could be challenging. If you need the money in a hurry, banks may take longer to release funds, so ask how long the approval and funding process will take before you apply.
Credit Unions: As a not-for-profit organization, credit unions reinvest profits back into the organization, so Members benefit from lower interest rates on loans. Credit unions provide Members with personalized services, and other advantages, including no application, no prepayment penalty, and no funding fees. CU SoCal can provide financing from $500 to $30,000.
Online Lenders: While numerous online lenders offer personal loans, because they are entirely online, with no storefront, they can’t offer the personalized service of a credit union or local bank. If you use an online lender, be sure to compare rates and loan terms and fully understand the terms of the loan. In the past, it was determined that a number of online lenders were not legitimate.
Learn more about Where to Get a Personal Loan at a Good Rate.
How easy is it to get a personal loan?
The best place to start looking for a personal loan is where you do your banking now. Your current bank will have quick access to your account information, which will help speed-up the loan approval process. Your current credit union or bank may be able to offer a promotional interest rate, low or no fees, and other Member or client benefits.
CU SoCal Personal Loans
CU SoCal is helping Southern Californians get the funds they need to pay for life’s necessities. Our personal loan features include:

  • Financing from $500 to $30,000
  • Terms up to 120 months for the lowest possible monthly payment
  • Line of credit option for access to funds when you need it
  • No application fee
  • No prepayment penalty
  • No funding fee

Learn more about CU SoCal’s Personal Loans.
Why Savvy Consumers Choose CU SoCal
For over 60 years CU SoCal has been providing financial services, including car loans, personal loans, mortgages, credit cards, and other banking products, to those who live, work, worship, or attend school in Orange County, Los Angeles County, Riverside County, and San Bernardino County.
Please give us a call today at 866.287.6225 today to schedule a no-obligation consultation with a personal loan representative.

Get Started on Your Personal Loan!

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Building Better Lives

Credit Union of Southern California (CU SoCal) is a leading financial institution empowering those who live, work, worship, or attend school in Orange County, Los Angeles County, Riverside County, and San Bernardino County to reach their goals and build strong financial futures. CU SoCal provides access to convenient money management services and offers competitive rates and flexible terms on auto loans, mortgages, and VISA credit cards—turning wishing and waiting into achieving and doing.


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