Upstart is a peer-to-peer lending platform that offers financial solutions primarily for recent college graduates and young professionals. Borrowers can obtain unsecured fixed-rate loans. 

What separates Upstart from other lending sites is its unique approval process. For a recent college graduate, Upstart looks at other factors such as education and employment history in addition to a traditional check of your credit history with the major credit bureaus. Because this process is tailored to meet the individual applicant, Upstart states it is able to save its borrowers over 23 percent, compared to high-interest credit card rates. Additionally, the lending platform doesn't require applicants to have an excellent credit rating, the way that other online lenders do.

Keep reading our Upstart personal loans review for pros and cons of borrowing from this lender. Read Upstart reviews below to see what consumers have to say about the online lending service.

The Good

  • High Likelihood of Approval
  • Flexible Options, Fast Disbursements 
  • Upstart Loan Reviews
  • Upstart Loan Amount
  • Check Your Rate with No Credit Penalty
  • Three and Five Year Loans Terms

High Likelihood of Approval

Upstart is an excellent choice for applicants who have little to no credit history, but have a quality college degree or a high-paying job. 

Upstart personal loans are tailored to meet the needs of individual applicants. This is especially helpful for young professionals and recent college graduates. 

This lender has a minimum credit score requirement of 620, but there are no minimum lines of credit or years of credit required in order to borrow money. Factors that go into determining eligibility include:

  • Education 
  • Area of Study 
  • Job History 
  • Credit Score
  • Years of Credit 

Flexible Options, Fast Disbursement 

The loan application process is tailored to the needs of the applicant. This enables Upstart to pass on its savings directly to the borrower. This can be seen in its APR Range (lowest rate: 5.69 percent, highest rate: 35.99 percent), low fees, and competitive max loan repayment term (five years). 

The process is also incredibly fast. Most borrowers are able to qualify and receive their funds the day after they apply and are approved (it takes up to three days for education loans). It is at least a day faster than some top personal loan lenders, and can be a few days faster than other peer-to-peer lending sites. 

Upstart Loan Reviews

As of late 2019, Upstart has a 4.4/5 star rating from consumers with hundreds of reviews. Upstart reviews highlight quick approval and funds transfer (money can be transferred to your bank account as soon as one business day after approval), quality customer service, and reasonable rates (5.69% – 35.99%).

Upstart Loan Amount

Upstart loans range from $1,000 to $50,000. Borrowers' qualified loan amounts are based on credit scores, income, and other determining factors provided on the loan application. Note that some states have minimum loan amounts that may affect your eligibility for smaller loans, depending on which state you are a permanent resident of. For example, Upstart states the minimum loan amount in Massachusetts is $7,000; the minimum loan amount in Ohio is $6,000; the minimum loan amount in New Mexico is $5,100; the minimum loan amount in Georgia is $3,100.

Check Your Rate with No Credit Penalty

It will not affect your credit score to check what type of rate you qualify for with the Upstart network. Upstart checks your credit report with a soft inquiry, which does not negatively affect your credit, as a hard inquiry does. Unlike many other online lending platforms, this prequalification check does not require you to enter a driver's license or social security number. 

Then, if you choose to accept the loan offer and continue through the loan process, Upstart will do a hard credit check. This process is common within the industry and will affect your credit. Having the rate check be a soft inquiry can give consumers peace of mind that it will not ding their credit if they decide not to accept the initial offer. 

Three and Five Year Loan Terms

Upstart peer-to-peer loans offer three-year or five-year terms. Having a repayment term option allows you to select the term length that works best for your financial situation, and because Upstart does not charge a prepayment fee, you can pay off your loan at any time, regardless of the loan term. 

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The Bad

  • May Not Be Ideal for Debt Consolidation
  • Fees Can Add Up

May Not Be Ideal for Debt Consolidation

Although the approval process is tailored to meet the needs of the individual applicant, being approved can be challenging. The average Upstart personal loan borrower has the following credentials:

  • Average Credit Score of 689 (FICO score)
  • Debt-to-Income Ratio of 18%
  • 75.5% College Educated
  • Weighted Average Income $81,782
  • Mid-twenties to Mid-thirties

While 73.3% of Upstart borrowers state that they intend to use the loan for credit card refinancing, this might not be the best option for everyone, depending on the rates available to you. The above credentials can be difficult to meet because most borrowers are looking to consolidate debt, like credit card debt or student loans. That's why this personal loan lender may not be the best option for people that are looking for debt consolidation loans. 

Fees Can Add Up

Upstart unsecured personal loans do have fees to consider. It enforces a loan origination fee of one percent to six percent. The origination fee is taken out of the loan before the funds are disbursed to you, so the payment doesn't have to come out of your pocket. This percentage is determined by how qualified the borrower is. The higher rates go to less qualified applicants.

Upstart also charges a late payment fee at a standard rate of five percent or $15 (whichever is greater). It's a good idea to make sure your monthly payment arrives on time. However, late fees for monthly payments like this are pretty common within the lending industry, and unlike some competing online lenders, Upstart does not charge a check processing fee or a prepayment penalty (an additional charge for paying off a loan early).

The Bottom Line

When choosing a lending company, Upstart is a solid lender to consider for young professionals with a good credit score, but little to no credit or credit history. Its unique application process allows these individuals to receive competitive terms.

Potential borrowers should be aware of the origination and late payment fees. However, this is common within the lending industry. There is also no prepayment penalty or check processing charges. Upstart unsecured personal loans are funded the day after an applicant has been approved, which makes them a great choice for someone in need of money quickly. Upstart has positive consumer reviews and a wide range of loan offerings, ranging from $1,000 to $50,000. 

With all it has to offer, we suggest looking into this loan service provider — especially since Upstart does not require a high minimum credit rating and takes into account additional factors (such as education, job history, and income) to determine eligibility, it could be a great choice for your borrower needs.

Have you borrowed from Upstart? Let us know about your experience with a quick personal loans review below. 

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User Reviews

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338 Reviews

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Melinda Zeares
August 17th, 2015 Plano, TX

The process, while a little complicated, was clearly explained. The customer service was outstanding. The time frame was reasonable. I really appreciate being able to get the loan I need for my business when my bank had turned me down. Basing my acceptance and rate on my education and work experience was refreshing. Finally, I got some value from that 4.0 in graduate school!

kate h
August 17th, 2015 Chicago, IL

The experience was easy and straightforward. The staff was helpful and informative.

August 17th, 2015 Broomfield, CO

Upstart was a pleasant and easy experience and gave the best rates that I could not have received from my bank. Thank you upstart I will be recommending the company to everyone I know.

Anuradha Pandey
August 17th, 2015 Austin, TX

It felt so good to nuke my balances, and it was so easy to get through the process!

Greer Findura
August 17th, 2015 Winter Park, FL

Had a wonderful experience with Upstart and have recommended it to all of my friends and family. Wonderful service and a great opportunity to receive a low-interest loan.

Benjamin Falkowski
August 17th, 2015 Washington, DC

Great customer experience. Would highly recommend.

August 17th, 2015

Very fast! Customer service was fantastic. No issues whatsoever!

Mike strayer
August 17th, 2015 New York, NY

Streamlined processes and prompt and professional staff.

Sara Lowry
August 17th, 2015 Reading, PA

I was very happy with the process. I have been advocating for a company like yours to look at the entire person, not just a credit score.

August 17th, 2015 FL

Awesome customer service. Convenient and efficient. We would recommend to anyone.

Dennis Robertson
August 17th, 2015 Winchester, VA

This was one of the simplest and easiest loan experience I have ever encountered! Good work!

August 17th, 2015 Los Angeles, CA

Super easy to fill out the forms. I uploaded all my supporting documents and scheduled a call for the next day to see if I was approved or not. What surprised was that they called back within a couple hours, verified some things, and told me I was approved. Got the money the next business day. I'm super impressed with the service, the representative that called me, the APR I got, and can't recommend them enough!

August 17th, 2015 Bristow, OK

Had researched ways to consolidate my credit card debt, heard about Upstart and thought I'd try it. So glad I did. Wonderful experience in obtaining a loan with low APR. I talked with THREE different people who were all very helpful and they looked at my situation, not my credit score. I recommend Upstart to anyone looking for financing options.

August 14th, 2015 Pearland, TX

The process was relatively easy and fast. The requirements were explained in lay terms making it more understandable. And the best part, the rates were the lowest I have ever come across.

August 14th, 2015 San Jose, CA

Lower interest rate than LC and Prosper offered me, and much more user friendly process and website

August 14th, 2015 Arlington, TN

Tremendous concept...using other means and methods to evaluate risk with lending money and ignoring Fair Isaac and the FICO system in general. A quick, painless and fair process, couldn't be happier. Thanks so much

August 14th, 2015 Tucson, AZ

Everything was quick, easy and efficient. As a young person trying to get their first financed car the process was easy to understand very reasonable for a small loan of $3000. All of the people I worked with were friendly and replied promptly to any of my questions or concerns.

August 14th, 2015 Indianapolis, IN

Upstart has provided nothing but wonderful service for 2 different loans! Because of them, I am on my way to financial freedom in only 3 years as opposed to nearly an unlimited amount of year and interest. Every time I have had questions or issues, the customer service team has provided quick and easy solutions/help. I highly recommend Upstart!

August 14th, 2015 New Haven, CT

So easy!

August 14th, 2015 Orlando, FL

The application process is straight forward and the terms are very clear. Customer service is also excellent with very knowledgeable people willing to help you get the best conditions for your loan based on your particular situation. 100% recommended.

August 14th, 2015 Brooklyn, NY

Seamless. Lowest rates. Excellent customer service. A few of the great things about my Upstart experience. Highly recommended!

Natasha G.
August 14th, 2015 Flushing, NY

Ridiculously great company to work with.Easy to use-- from the application process to getting the money in my account-- it took less than 3 days and was seamless. Highly professional team working for this company. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!

August 14th, 2015 River Edge, NJ

The Upstart proces was efficient.

Mitchell Warnecke
August 13th, 2015 Statesville, NC

This was so easy to fill out the Application and then actually getting the money in your account??!! It literally was 1, 2, 3 and then I had the money.

August 13th, 2015 Washington, DC

Good experience!

Mike Bowers
August 13th, 2015 Cheney, WA

Everything was easy, everyone I spoke to was friendly, and I had the money in hand within 48 hours.

Vineeth Annamreddy
August 13th, 2015 Alexandria, VA

Very quick turn around and the representative was friendly and helpful.

Kim Aitken
August 13th, 2015 West Jordan, UT

Very quick and easy....

August 13th, 2015 Wailuku, HI

It was very easy....It seemed to easy, but I'm very happy.

August 12th, 2015 San Jose, CA

Process was super easy, fast and smooth. Got my application approved within 48 hours and received load within 72 hours. I just paid off two very high-interest credit cards with loan from upstart at a substantially low interest rate. Simply awesome!Thank you upstart!-Moe, San Jose, CA

John Blowers
August 12th, 2015 Las Cruces, NM

I was amazed when my bank turned me down for a loan, considering an income above 50k and having never been delinquent on any payments. Upstart took into account that I am only starting my credit journey and approved me for the loan I needed to consolidate some credit cards! Wonderful and fast service!

August 12th, 2015 Brooklyn, NY

Great experience.

August 12th, 2015 Los Angeles, CA

Fantastic service! Perfect customer service!

Ryan Nugent
August 12th, 2015 Chicago, IL

Amazing service and exceptional company. I would highly recommend them and will definitely let my friends know about this company. Very impressed!

Marlon Morales
August 12th, 2015 Novato, CA

The reviews were all true! Everything was clear, well written, and simple. I will get to pay down my revolving balances and have a lower monthly payment, with a likely score increase. I was impressed with my rate. Great company!

jennifer Vance
August 12th, 2015 Tampa, FL

fast process, wonderful customer service and a true blessing of a service you provide. I will be recommending you to friends and family!

August 11th, 2015 New York, NY

Fantastic, quick and friendly!

August 11th, 2015 New York, NY

Great customer service, comprehensive and fast. However, I was under the impression that there would be 'no hard inquiry' and there was one. f.

Norkeith Smith
August 10th, 2015 Detroit, MI

I really appreciated the helpfulness of the loan officers. The turnaround process was very quick. They provide much lower interest rates to consolidate my debt relative to similar sites.

Dominick Iaconis
August 10th, 2015 Mahwah, NJ

Took a little longer than my previous loan with UPSTART but all in all, easy transaction.

August 10th, 2015 Arlington, VA

Was easy, clear, and fast from beginning to end. Helpful hint! If you are going to use things like your education, financial portfolio, or other aspects to get a better interest rate - already have digital copies of everything ahead of time so you can just attach them during the application process. I used Upstart to pay off a high APR credit car at 12.8% and qualified for 6.34% due to my work tenure, good grades, and financial status - as opposed to my credit score. My support agent, Jeremy, was helpful and patient!

August 10th, 2015 Knoxville, TN

Upstart is legit. There is no other way to say it. First of all, their branding and platform are simple, minimalist, and easy-to-use. Second, their ways and culture are so different than any other company out there. This was all backed up by their customer service, which was amazing - friendly, knowledge experts of their own company. That's all we ask for! I highly, highly, HIGHLY recommend this company to ANYONE and will endorse to anyone who will listen. Thanks!

Neil Lider
August 7th, 2015 Lakewood, OH

Good. courteous service

B. Johnson
August 7th, 2015 Chicago, IL

The process was fairly quick. I was able to upload all necessary documents either through the site or through a separate email. After the phone interview, I had an answer within a few hours. The loan was processed and the funds released directly to my account within 24 hours!

Victoria V
August 7th, 2015 Austin, TX

I actually came across Upstart through a Facebook ad. Skeptical at first, I held off on clicking, even though the message was appealing. Eventually, curiosity got the best of me and I researched the company. They were number one on Credit Karma, only had 4 and 5 star reviews, and tons of them. It became clear that they were serious about their mission statement. I used their website to get a rate quote without any financial ding on my part. Once I saw how low it was compared to my credit card APR, I decided to go through the process. They have a nice tool that lets you see what your monthly payment would be at various loan amounts for your rate, that way you can choose what you can afford. From there, you just submit proof of certain financials and scholastic achievements. It's the only service I know of that takes into account your schooling. I heard back in mere hours. After a short and very pleasant verification call with the nicest customer service person, I was assigned an account manager. Once again, it was mere hours after this call that I got the final approval email. From submitting the final piece, all of this happened for me in the course of one day. The funds will be in my account one business day from now and my credit card balance will be instantly erased. If you're looking to consolidate your credit card debt into one monthly payment at a much lower rate, this is the simplest, most trustworthy service you can go with. It was so easy and SO quick!

August 7th, 2015 Salisbury, MD

Quick and easy

August 7th, 2015 Atlanta, GA

Upstart was a complete joy to work with. I am still in shock at how easy and seamless the process has been. I have already recommended Upstart to friends and family.

Lloyd Brown
August 7th, 2015 Elmont, NY

The application process was clear, easy and efficient. I was very pleased.

August 7th, 2015 Philadelphia, PA

The loan application process was very quick and easy. The customer service reps I spoke with were all very personable and helpful. However, the site asks you to schedule a verification call, so I scheduled one at a time that was convenient for me. Instead of calling at that time, Upstart called me three times while I was at work. Also, during my verification call, they took some of my information down incorrectly, so they had to call back and verify that again. Overall, the experience was still a good one and I'm very excited to finally be on the path to freedom from debt!

August 7th, 2015 Saint Petersburg, FL

Quick and easy!