What Is An Unsecured Personal Loan?

Unsecured Personal Loan

Any form of collateral is not necessary for an unsecured loan. They are granted by creditors depending on a borrower’s credit ratings instead of their possession of the property as a guarantee.

A few instances of unsecured loans are personal loans, credit cards, and college debt.

Applicants often need to have excellent credit to qualify for an unsecured loan.  Unsecured borrowings are sometimes risky for creditors because they do not have any backup. Therefore, the interest rates on these are often relatively high. In rare cases, creditors will accept a cosigner from prospective borrowers with bad credit.

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What Is an Unsecured Personal Loan?

Have you been wondering: what is an unsecured personal loan? Keep reading, and you will learn that and much more about them! Simply put, unsecured borrowings are a type of financial aid that requires no collateral.

They are also called signature loans. The reason for that is they only require your signature to seal the deal! However, even though they do not require any form of guarantee, each lending company will have specific requirements.

Your credit rating will be evaluated by the lender once you apply for funding. Your earnings, cash reserves, and debt will all be taken into account when determining your eligibility.

Depending on the borrower’s employment circumstances and intended use for the money, an unsecured borrowing may or may not be the best choice.

How Unsecured Personal Loan Works

Depending on your needs and the lender, your unsecured loan can be anywhere from $1,000 to $100,000. The terms for these can last from two to six years. APR can vary based on your lending company of choice and your circumstances. However, it usually goes from 6% to 35%.

The best creditors will allow you to prequalify and compare different offers and interest rates. That is certainly an advantage as you will avoid hard credit inquiries. These can damage your credit score. Apart from that, most creditors accept online applications as they are much more convenient.

Pros And Cons Of Unsecured Personal Loans

“One size fits all” definitely does not apply to unsecured personal loans. They have advantages and disadvantages based on your personal situation and needs. See below for some of the pros and cons to help you get a better picture of this borrowing option.

Pros: Cons:
Quick funding
Once you get approved, the creditors will issue the funds fairly quickly. They are excellent for urgent situations when you need money within a few days. 
High credit score
Since there is no collateral, lending companies need to be careful with the applicants they approve. To minimize their risk, they require a good or excellent credit rating. 
Collateral not required
One of the best sides to this borrowing option is that there is no collateral. You do not have to put your house or a car at risk to qualify.
Higher interest
As good as it sounds not to put up collateral, you will probably have a higher interest rate than with secured borrowings. This is another way that credits secure themselves.
Longer terms
Repayment terms are over 2 years in most cases. That means that you will have plenty of time to repay what you owe.
Strict requirements
Due to all the risks that unsecured lending carries for lenders, they tend to be very strict. They often have hard inquiries regarding your credit score, which can cause it to decrease.
Single payment
Once you agree to the terms, the lending company will issue your payment in a lump sum!

Who Should Get Unsecured Personal Loan?

Unsecured personal loans are the perfect source of funding for individuals who would not like to put up any type of property as security. Remember that low interest rates are only possible if you have a strong credit score. Consider secured borrowing as a backup plan if your credit is not so good.

There are many factors to consider before you apply. Make sure your income is sufficient for repayment. If you end up with late payments, this can cause significant damage to your credit rating. 

If you need access to funds quickly and you fulfill all requirements, these borrowings are definitely for you. But, if you do not have a long credit history, you might want to avoid them. They are a high risk for the banks, so if you have any doubts about your payments, credit, or an unsteady income, look for alternatives.

Read More: Everything You Need To Know About Unsecured Loans

How To Apply For Unsecured Personal Loan

Before applying for an unsecured loan, make sure that you can meet the lender’s requirements. Consider your earnings, expenses, and any potential debt you may have. If you determine that this lending option will bring you more good than bad, proceed with your application. 

You will need to provide your personal information, such as full name, proof of income, bank statements, and so on. Most lending companies will allow you to submit an application online. You can also acquire funds with banks or credit unions. Prior to clicking that ‘submit’ button, review your request carefully!

Below are some of the factors to consider during the application process.

Decide How Much You Need

The first thing to consider before you apply for funding is the amount. Think about the purpose of this funding option and what will be sufficient to cover the expense. Never take out more than you actually need. 

Be aware of your income and monthly expenses, as well as other debts. All of this will affect your repayment abilities. Late payments are not only stressful but also affect your credit score. That means that getting another borrowing in the future is going to be a lot more difficult.

If you borrow more than you can pay back, you might even face additional fees. Most lending companies do not tolerate missed payments. Therefore, think carefully about the amount you need and make sure you will not struggle to make regular payments.

Find Right Lender

Each lending company has different requirements and offers different plans. Consider your personal situation and make an informed decision. It is of the utmost importance to look into multiple lending options before making a choice. 

As interest rates are not fixed, they can vary significantly among creditors. They will also depend on your income and debt, as well as your credit rating. Not every creditor will have the same outlook on your situation, so explore the options!

Some banks or online lending companies charge additional fees for late payments, prepayment, and such. Some of them even have shorter terms compared to the competition.

Make sure that you find the right lender by looking into different options until you find the best one for you.

Compare Unsecured Personal Loan Offers

Comparing offers is the best way to find the most personalized loan based on your financial situation. You can do so by checking out various lenders and what they have to provide. Luckily, many lenders operate online, so you can quickly and conveniently check their offers. 

Prior to picking a lender, make sure you check for important details like the rates and the amount of each installment. To choose the one that best suits your needs, look for lenders who provide a variety of repaying arrangements. Pay attention to lenders that have some special benefits or restrictions.

Here are some of the main factors to consider when comparing:

  • Interest rate
  • Loan amounts
  • Terms
  • Additional benefits
  • Extra charges
  • The requirements

Submit The Application

Once you have picked your lender, you can start with the application process. Whether your lending company operates online or offline, it is fairly simple to apply. See below for some steps to guide you in both instances.


  • Visit the website – Every lender that operates online has a website that you can use to start off your application. 
  • Pick the type of loan – As you opted for a personal one, make sure to choose that section. 
  • Click on ”Apply” – Most lending sites will have a button that says ”Apply” or ”Submit a request.” 
  • Enter your data – Put in the information that the form requires and the rest is self-explanatory!


  • Visit the physical location.
  • Enquire about the personal loan application form.
  • Fill out the information and submit any documentation that may be required.

Provide Documentation

Like with any application process, different types of documentation are required. Even though the requirements differ based on the creditor, the documents are mostly the same. Being informed on this part of the process can make everything much smoother.

Here are some of the documents you will most likely need:

1. Application form 

Before you hand in anything else, borrowers must fill out the lender’s form designated for personal loans. 

2. Your ID

There are different forms of personal identification that you can submit. It can be your passport, birth certificate, your driver’s license, and so on. 

3. Proof of income

This includes bank statements, pay stubs, credit card records, and any other income information that may be useful. You might also need proof of employment. 

4. Your address

Provide any valid document that contains your real address. Sometimes, this can even be a bill.

Accept Loan Funds

Once you come to an agreement regarding your loan, all you have to do is wait for the money. The payout period depends on the lender you picked.

It can take anywhere from 1 to 7 business days. Some lenders even take around 30 days to provide the funds.

Personal loans as a good idea because the funds are generally issued quickly upon approval. If you are looking for quick cash to cover an urgent expense, this might be right for you. Go through the application process and be on the lookout for your money!

Read Also: Down Payment Loan: What Is It and How to Get It?

Unsecured Personal Loan Vs. Payday Loan

There are several connections between a payday loan and a personal one. Both of them involve taking out money that needs to be repaid in a specific timeframe. They offer quick funding and can be used for emergencies.

However, the terms of these borrowings might vary a lot. The purpose of payday loans is to obtain small sums of cash until you get a paycheck. They are also quite simple to apply for. Payday loans do not require collateral either, but the interest rates can be tremendous!

In order to take out a personal loan, you must prove your ability to repay the lender in time. These loans are issued by banks, online lenders, and credit unions. They generally offer higher amounts and lower interest rates compared to payday loans.  


You can use unsecured loans for different reasons. Explore your options and compare the offers to find the most suitable one for you. Ensure that you can repay the monthly installments without any stress. 

Once you pick your lender, all you have to do is apply. The application process is simple, and it can even be done online most of the time. Gather the documents and wait for approval!

Sources Used in Research for the Article:

  1. Personal Loans: Secured vs. Unsecured, National Credit Union Administration,
  2. Understanding Your Credit, Federal Trade Commission,
  3. What You Should Know About Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOC), Consumer Financial
    Protection Bureau,


Which bank is best for an unsecured personal loan?

There are many options out there, and one lender cannot be suitable for everyone. However, SoFi, LightStream, and Upgrade have a great reputation among online lending companies.

Is it hard to get an unsecured personal loan?

No, if you have a good or excellent credit score, personal loans can be obtained effortlessly. The requirements will depend on the creditor, so it might be easier with some over others.

What is an example of an unsecured loan?

The best example of this would be student loans. The students receive a sum of cash without putting up any collateral. They are required to repay the bank once they graduate and start working.

Are unsecured loans cheaper?

Depending on your financial situation and the lending company, unsecured personal loans can be cheaper or more expensive than some other types. They are usually risky for the lender, which is why the interest rates tend to be high.

Do unsecured loans hurt my credit?

Based on how you handle these loans, they can either hurt or improve your credit rating. If you are responsible and make regular payments, your score will be intact. But, sometimes lenders use hard inquiries before they approve the loan.