Personal Loans

Best Personal Loans with No Origination Fees for 2022

Origination fees are common among lenders, but you may be able to avoid them. Learn about potential loans that have no origination fees, compare rates, and choose your personal loan.
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By Shannon Lee
Updated on: September 22nd, 2022

When you’re looking for a personal loan, you want the best deal. That’s why you look at interest rates, fees, approval time, and other points that matter to the bottom line.

Origination fees can add a hefty amount to any personal loan, so seeking out those that have no origination fees can make a big difference to how much money you actually pocket after the loan is signed.

Learn about some of the top lenders that require no origination fees.

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Top Lenders

After going through the research, we chose the top lenders who offer loans with no origination fees.

They each have their pros and cons, but all can help save you some money by slashing those fees. Here’s what to expect from our top four.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs: Best for Consumers Who Use Mobile Apps

Marcus by Goldman Sachs offers a robust, fast, intuitive mobile app that makes managing your personal finances simple. Marcus customers who have other accounts with Marcus, including credit cards, investment accounts, and savings accounts can manage all their accounts from one app.

One of the biggest advantages of a personal loan from Marcus by Goldman Sachs is no fees. There are no origination fees, late fees, or even any cost for the application. There are no fees for paying off your loan early. These might seem like small fees at first, but they can add up quickly.

Marcus by Goldman Sachs Pros & Cons

  • Loan amount: $3,500 to $40,000
  • Loan terms: 3-7 years
  • Availability and restrictions: No current restrictions

SoFi: Best for Large Loan Amounts

If you need a large loan, this might be your best bet. SoFi offers personal loans of up to $100,000.

SoFi is known for providing large loan amounts to those who qualify. Payback terms range from three to seven years, which means even a larger loan is well within your reach.

Unemployment protection and member coaching can help ensure that you stay on track and keep your credit looking good, no matter the size of the loan you choose.

SoFi Pros & Cons

  • Loan amount: $5,000 to $100,000
  • Loan terms: 3-7 years
  • Availability and restrictions: Not available in Mississippi

Upstart: Best for Borrowers with Good Credit

If you’ve got great credit, Upstart could be the lender for you.

They do charge an origination fee; however, if you have excellent credit, you might qualify for a very low origination fee or none at all, which is why they made our list.

There are no hidden fees, and the interest rate you pay can vary wildly depending upon your credit history and other terms and ranges from around 5% to over 35%.

Upstart Pros & Cons

  • Loan amount: $3,000 to $50,000
  • Loan terms: 3-5 years
  • Availability and restrictions: Not available in Iowa or West Virginia

How Does a Personal Loan With an Origination Fee Work?

An origination fee is charged at the start of the loan term. It is meant to compensate the lender for the administrative costs they incur when lending the money, including the costs of pulling your credit report, verifying documents, contacting employers or other individuals to vet your application, and even sending out mail via electronic or physical means.

When you apply for a personal loan, you will receive a Truth in Lending disclosure. This is mandated by the federal government. In that disclosure, you will find exactly what the origination fee covers for that particular lender.

The origination fee often ranges from 1% to 8% of the total loan amount. Those with excellent credit should expect an origination fee on the low end of that scale, while those with poor credit can expect something on the higher end.

Here’s how you can pay the origination fee:

Origination fee payment method 1

The fee can be paid by taking it out of the total of the original loan, which means you end up with less. For example, a $10,000 loan with a 5% origination fee means you would actually receive $9,500 after the origination fee is collected.

Origination fee payment method 2

The fee can be paid by adding it to the loan amount. That means you still get the $10,000 loan but you are now paying interest on the origination fee as well, which can drive up the overall cost of your loan.

Origination fee payment method 3

In some cases, you can pay the origination fee upfront. This might be a good idea if you have a little cash on hand and want to avoid the interest that can occur if you add the fee to the loan itself.

You can negotiate the origination fee with a personal loan, but keep in mind that for whatever concessions the lender makes, the costs will go up elsewhere.

For example, a lender might be willing to drop the origination fee to 2% from their usual 6%, but they will make up for that in a higher interest rate.

How to Compare Personal Loans to Find the Best With No Origination Fees

When you’re looking for the best loan with no origination fee, you will need to compare the variety of options out there. But it’s not just all about origination fees. It’s also about looking at the special features offered by each lender, how long it takes to get your money, the interest rates you might pay, and what your repayment terms look like.

Interest rate

While the general rule of thumb is to look for the lowest interest rate, when you are also looking at loans with no origination fee, this can become a bit tricky.

That’s because many loans with no origination fees will have a higher APR than those that carry the fee. Then it becomes a matter of doing some math.

Will the interest you pay over the long term be more than what you would have paid in an origination fee? If your interest is lowered by an origination fee, do you come out ahead of the game with more money in your pocket, even after factoring in the origination fee plus the interest?

Special features

Look for a loan that fits your lifestyle.

If you find that you are terrible with calendars and need help remembering to make your payments, a lender with automatic payment options would be a strong contender.

If you prefer to handle all of your loan payments from the privacy of your phone, look for a lender that offers a strong smartphone app or online presence.

Some lenders offer a wide variety of financial products, so if you hope to build your financial life in one place in the future, look for a lender that will offer everything you might need.

Repayment period and terms

The repayment period and terms of the loan should be spelled out quite clearly before you sign the papers.

Consider how long you need that repayment period to be. Though it might seem to make sense to pay it off as quickly as possible and avoid paying interest for longer, what really matters is whether you can make the monthly payments.

If you will struggle to pay a higher amount, it might be best to look for a longer repayment period and thus, lower payments. Look at the terms as well to determine if you could refinance your personal loan if you got into a financial bind.

Funding Time

Most loans are funded rather quickly, often within a matter of days.

But some loans might take a few weeks from approval to funding time.

How badly do you need the money quickly? If you need to get it as soon as possible, look for a lender that offers a proven, faster turn-around time.

If you can wait a bit, you might be able to find a lender who takes their time in funding but offers lower interest rates or more agreeable terms.

Compare personal loans from the top lenders based on interest rates, origination fees, and more.

How to Get a Personal Loan Without Origination Fee

When choosing a loan with no origination fee, there are several steps to consider. Here’s how to begin the process and what to expect on each step along the way.

Research and compare your options

Be sure a personal loan is the best product for your needs.

There are other potential options, such as using a buy now, pay later option for large purchases or a 0% APR credit card opportunity that gives you the chance to purchase something for up to 18 months with no interest.

However, a personal loan might be better as it allows you to spread payments out over a longer period of time. Review all your options before making a decision.

Understand your credit score

Your credit score is a numerical representation of your credit history. A credit score of 850 is the highest you can earn, and that is absolutely excellent credit that’s almost impossible to attain.

On the other end of the spectrum is a score of 300, which is often assigned to people who have a bad credit history or no credit at all. If you have a low credit score, your lender might ask you to open a joint account or have a co-signer.

Find the best rates

Your rates are determined by a variety of factors, including your credit score and credit history, your income, the debt you are already carrying, how much you want to borrow, and the length of your loan term.

Each lender might assign more weight to one point and less to another; that’s why it matters to shop around to find the lender that offers the best terms and the lowest rates.

Increase your chances of getting approved

There are some ways to improve your chances of getting that loan.

Start by understanding your credit score and doing what it takes to improve it, such as paying down your debt, increasing your income, paying down your credit cards, and considering a joint account or co-signer.

Also, make a point of only asking for the amount of loan you really need and not asking for or accepting far more than that.

Apply for the loan

Get your documents in order! You’ll need proof of income, identification, and proof of your home address, an application, banking information, and any information on the collateral you’ll be using if you are seeking a secured loan.

Be ready to provide other information as well, depending upon what the lender needs from you.

Get approved

Unsecured personal loans can be easy to get for those with good credit; however, those with poor or fair credit might need to put up some collateral for their loan.

Look into the different lenders to determine which one will give you the better odds of approval.

Though short-term and payday loans are often the easiest to get, remember that they come with a hefty interest rate price tag and don’t offer advantageous repayment terms.

Get help if you need it

If you run into a hurdle or a question you can’t find the answer to in the online process of getting a loan, pick up the phone and call the lender.

Some lenders try to keep everything automated and thus it becomes a hassle to get through to them.

Look for a loan company that offers customer service with a live representative during normal business hours. This is especially important if you have a complicated credit history or need to access your cash as soon as possible.

Make payments on time

Always make your payments on time.

Missing or making late payments can result in an adverse effect on your credit score.

If you have a joint account with a co-signer, this could mean that they are now responsible for your payments; that’s likely not what anyone signed up for, so that could lead to serious personal strife as well.

When you choose to take out a loan, make sure you can afford to pay it back.

How AmOne Can Help You Find Personal Loans With No Origination Fees

At AmOne, we understand that getting a personal loan can be a daunting task. Even if you are excited about the reasons you need the money — such as starting a new business or obtaining that one large purchase you’ve been thinking about for a long time — it can be difficult to get through the process.

We can help by doing the legwork for you in finding the best possible personal loan, including those with no origination fees. Our system is a free service that matches you with the best loan for your unique situation.

Explore our options on your own or speak with a dedicated loan specialist who can walk you through the process.

Personal Loan Origination Fee Pros and Cons

When you’re seeking a personal loan with no origination fee, there are advantages and disadvantages.

You could be missing out on the best loan for you

When you are determined to look for loans with no origination fee, you can rest assured that you will find many options to avoid it.

The downside of that is cutting off the potential to find other loans that offer a better overall rate; some loans might charge an origination fee but lower interest, and that could save you money in the long run.

Your credit score matters

Your credit score can affect your origination fee. If you have a great credit score, you might find that a lender will waive the origination fee.

If your score is less than ideal, you could see an origination fee at the higher end of the 1% to 8% spectrum. Ironically enough, getting the loan would likely improve your credit score after a short period of making on-time payments.

An origination fee could away from your loan amount

If you are very tight on cash, you might need the entire amount of the loan you asked for. An origination fee that is deducted from the loan can result in you losing a nice chunk of change at a time when every penny counts.

On the other hand, if you choose to have your origination fee rolled into your loan, you do get all of your cash, but you wind up paying interest on that origination fee, which drives it up substantially in the long run.

Weighing the pros and cons of origination fees can help you decide which option is right for you.

What We Researched

When we researched the best personal loans with no origination fees, we went deeper than the fee. We looked at a variety of other factors, including:

Fees

These include origination fees, late fees, missed payment fees, and more.

Type of loans

Secured and unsecured loans were part of our vetting process, as well as those that needed a co-signer to create a joint account.

Reviews

What did others think of their lender, the loan servicing, getting their cash, and more?

Rates

Interest rates matter as they determine how much you really pay for your loan. Interest rates are creeping up and changing daily, so this is an important measure of how much you’ll pay over the life of the loan.

Offers

Some lenders have periodic offers that can give you the opportunity for low-interest for a set period of time or a deal with no origination fees.

Accessibility

How many borrowers actually get approved for their loan? Is the lender offering a truly accessible product, even to those who don’t have the best credit?

How We Picked

AmOne surveyed dozens of lenders and personal loans to bring you the top ones based on your needs and situation including bad or fair credit, low income, quick funding, loan amount, debt consolidation, ease of application, and more.

Our methodology

We’ve looked at over 30 loan companies to find which ones offer personal loans.

Once we narrowed down the options, we analyzed the personal loans offered by 20 lenders and looked at over 10 data points, including credit score requirements, origination fees, accessibility, customer experience, APR rates, loan amounts, length of time to pay, the application process, and more. We picked the best personal loans with no origination fees by scoring loans based on those features.

But we don’t stop there. We’ll keep spot-checking to ensure the most recent loan information is included here and update our list annually.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the difference between a secured and unsecured loan?

A secured loan is one that uses collateral to guarantee that the lender can get their money back if you default on payments. Secured loans are often better for those who have no credit or bad credit. Those who have better credit can often get an unsecured loan, which requires no collateral.

What if I get denied a personal loan?

If you get denied, ask for the reasons why. You can then work on those reasons, such as improving your credit score or changing your debt-to-income ratio. Take a few months before applying again.

Can I use a personal loan for anything I want?

Some lenders don’t care what you want the loan for as long as you’re not doing anything illegal with the funds. Others do have limits on what you can use the money for; a good example is not using the money for secondary education expenses.

What are peer-to-peer loans?

These loans are funds that come from a person rather than an institution. Someone will choose to “invest” in you by offering you a loan; you pay them back, with interest. This is usually facilitated through a dedicated website.

How can I get a copy of my credit report?

You are entitled to one free credit report per year from each of the three credit reporting bureaus. (That means you can get three credit reports each year.) You can find this at AnnualCreditReport.com. There is absolutely no charge for this service.