- Borrower qualifications are lower than going through banks
- Financing is available for qualified entrepreneurs
- Few extra fees
- The application process is fast and easy
- Multiple avenues of customer support
- Financing isn’t available in some states
- Low borrowing amounts
- Rates can be expensive
LendingPoint, an Atlanta-based lender, was founded to help borrowers improve their personal credit. This company specializes in lending to consumers who have credit scores in the 600-680 range — customers who typically have a harder time getting funding than people with higher scores.
LendingPoint loans can be used for many purposes, including entrepreneurial ambitions. The process of getting a loan for a business is no different than the process of getting a loan for other reasons. As a rule of thumb, it’s not a good idea to mix personal and business finances. As such, personal loans are usually only a good idea for entrepreneurs with a business concept, startups, or very young businesses.
If you are in one of those situations, you need a small amount of cash to get your business off the ground, and you have a credit score between 600 and 680, you might want to consider applying for a loan from LendingPoint. The application is easy, customer service is communicative, and the lender has a very positive reputation across the web.
On the other hand, entrepreneurs with higher credit scores or merchants with established businesses will want to look elsewhere for funds.
Interested in learning more? Read on for the details!
Table of Contents
LendingPoint offers personal installment loans. Installment loans are the archetypical loan. You receive a lump sum from your lender, minus any origination fees. You then, over an agreed period called the term, pay the loan (plus accumulated interest) back in regular installments.
These are the requirements for getting a LendingPoint loan:
|Time In Business:
Because LendingPoint offers loans based on the strength of your personal (not business) creditworthiness, the lender does not require a certain time in business or annual revenue. Instead, you’ll need to meet these requirements:
- At least 18 years of age
- Have an eligible ID and SSN
- Have an annual income of $20K or above
- Have a verifiable bank account
If you meet all of the above requirements, you have a good chance of being approved for a LendingPoint loan. Approval is not guaranteed, however. This lender looks at a variety of factors, and your application may be ineligible because of other information LendingPoint discovers during the application process. In addition to the above, here are the factors LendingPoint considers:
- Job history
- Financial history
- Credit behavior
The stronger you are in each of these areas, the better chance you have of being approved for a loan, and the better your rates and fees will be.
LendingPoint does not currently lend to businesses in West Virginia.
Rates & Fees
These are the rates and fees for LendingPoint’s loans:
LendingPoint offers traditional term loans, which means you receive the funds in one lump sum and repay in fixed payments over a set period. Unlike most lenders, LendingPoint adds the cost of the origination fee to your total borrowing amount. For example, if you have an origination fee of 5% and are borrowing $10,000, you will receive the full $10,000, but you will repay a total of $10,500. You can, however, request that it be deducted from your disbursement if you prefer.
This lender’s annual percentage rate, or APR (the interest rate, inclusive of the origination fee and any other fees charged), ranges from 9.99% to 35.99%. For comparison, similar lenders have APRs that range anywhere from 6% to 36%. LendingPoint specifically targets borrowers with lower credit scores, which accounts for the overall higher rate of borrowing.
Aside from the origination fee and potential late fees, LendingPoint does not charge extra fees. You will not be charged a penalty for paying your loan early.
LendingPoint offers an application via its website.
First, the company asks for the amount you are looking to borrow and its intended purpose. You will also need to provide some basic information about yourself, such as your name, contact information, some self-reported financial information, and the last four digits of your social security number. At this point, LendingPoint may do a soft pull of your credit, but this will not affect your credit score.
The estimated loan offer is sent to you just a few minutes after your initial application, which details the rates and fees you are eligible for. You might have a couple of offers to choose from at this stage.
Once you choose your offer, LendingPoint will ask for some more documentation:
- Proof of employment and income
- All pages of your most recent bank statement
- A voided check
- Current driver’s license of government/state-issued ID
This is the point at which LendingPoint will conduct a hard credit inquiry.
According to customer reviews, the documentation stage is the one that can make or break your LendingPoint experience. LendingPoint often asks for quite a bit of information. If you have it all in order and ready to go, the process will likely be quick and easy. It may only take a few hours (generally 24 or fewer) after LendingPoint receives and verifies your documentation until you receive the final underwriting review and loan approval. However, if your paperwork is not in order, you may be in for a longer process.
LendingPoint allows only one loan at a time per borrower. If you like the company so much that you want to take out your next loan with them, you’ll have to wait until that first loan is paid off.
Sales & Advertising Transparency
Interest rates and origination fees are only visible in small print at the bottom of the home page. The numbers are present, and LendingPoint’s customer service is transparent about them, but they aren’t prominently displayed.
However, overall, LendingPoint is transparent throughout the whole loan process. It’s pretty easy to figure out what paperwork you need and what the process will be. You shouldn’t have any surprises to worry about.
Customer Service & Technical Support
LendingPoint advertises 24/7 customer support via email or phone. Although a few outliers expressed frustration due to slow communication, the majority of reviewers report positive experiences with LendingPoint’s customer service.
Negative Reviews & Complaints
LendingPoint has customer reviews on Trustpilot, Credit Karma, and its Facebook page. It’s also accredited with the BBB and has an A+ rating. Plus, there are a few reports on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) website. Overall, reviews trend on the positive side. However, a few customers report negative experiences:
- Rejections: Some customers were frustrated to learn that their application was rejected, even if they met the credit score requirements or got partway through the application process. As stated above, LendingPoint looks at many factors in addition to your credit score and, unfortunately, cannot accept every applicant.
- High Interest & Fees: Some reviewers expressed disappointment that their interest rate or origination fee was higher than they’d like. However, many acknowledge that, due to their low credit score, they probably wouldn’t be able to get better rates from other lenders. (That said, because each lender calculates risk differently, there is a chance you would qualify for lower rates elsewhere. See the Final Verdict for more information.)
- Difficulty Making Payments: A few customers expressed frustration regarding repayments, whether they couldn’t make payments online, couldn’t make early payments, or something else.
Most of the complaints (such as rejections and high-interest rates) are problems with the loan industry at large. Furthermore, complaints regarding LendingPoint’s services are so scarce that its most obvious problems are anomalies, not a pattern of behavior. It’s also worth noting that LendingPoint is quick to comment on negative reviews, admit fault when necessary, and fix problems when possible.
Positive Reviews & Testimonials
LendingPoint customer reviews are overall positive on all review sites. Currently, the lender has an aggregated rating of 4.9 out of 5 on Trustpilot with over 3,300 reviews.
This lender has also been featured in a number of mainstream news publications, including Yahoo Finance, American Banker, HuffPost, and VentureBeat.
Customers generally cite these as high points of working with LendingPoint:
- A fast and easy application process
- Excellent customer service
- Lends to customers with (relatively) low credit scores
We want to hear from you, though! Have you applied for a loan from LendingPoint? What was your experience like? Leave a message in the comments!
It’s clear that LendingPoint provides a useful service to consumers. Although it’s not the only lender to offer loans to customers with credit scores in the 600-680 range, its focus on those consumers, combined with its high-quality customer service, means that this lender is a useful tool for people without the best credit profiles.
In terms of startup funds, LendingPoint could be useful, but its narrow focus means that this source of funding will only work for a very small number of entrepreneurs. If you happen to fit this lender’s target customer profile, it may be worth applying. But if you have a higher credit score, you’ll want to look at your other options for business startup loans.
Even if you have a relatively low credit score, it may be worth getting quotes from other lenders. Each lender has their own way of calculating risk, so even though LendingPoint specializes in loans for people with low scores, there’s a chance you’ll be able to get a better rate elsewhere.
Interested in learning about your other options? Check out our full list of startup business loan reviews!
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