Upstart is a peer-to-peer lending personal loan company that offers financial solutions primarily for recent college graduates and young professionals. Borrowers can obtain unsecured loans at fixed rates.

What separates Upstart from other personal loan online lenders is its unique approval process. For a recent college graduate, Upstart looks at other factors such as education and employment history instead of only credit history. 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, and it does not require an excellent credit score. 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 Reviews
  • Upstart Loan Amount
  • Check Your Rate with No Credit Penalty
  • Three & Five Year Loans Terms

High Likelihood of Approval

Upstart is an excellent choice of lender for applicants who have little to no credit history and a quality education or a high-paying job. Upstart personal loans are tailored to meet the needs of the individual applicants. This is especially helpful for young professionals or recent college graduates. There is 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: 9.57 percent, highest rate: 29.99 percent), low fees, and competitive max loan terms (five years). 

The process is also incredibly fast. Most borrowers are able to 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.

Upstart Reviews

As of Early 2019, Upstart has a 4.5/5 star rating from consumers with hundreds of reviews. Upstart reviews highlight quick approval and fund transfer (money can be transferred to your bank account as soon as one business day after approval), quality customer service, and reasonable rates (9.57% - 29.99%).

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

To initially check your loan rate with Upstart, it will not affect your credit. Upstart checks your credit report with a soft inquiry, which does not negatively affect your credit as a hard inquiry does. Then, if you choose to accept the rate offer and continue through the loan process, Upstart will do a hard credit inquiry, which 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 & Five Year Loan Terms

Upstart offers three-year or five-year loans. Having this option allows you to select the option 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:

  • Credit Score of Roughly 620
  • Debt-to-income Ratio of 18%
  • Mid-twenties to Mid-thirties

The above credentials can be difficult to meet because most borrowers are looking to consolidate debt, like credit card debt or student 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 loan 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 fee at a standard rate of five percent or $15 (whichever is greater) on late payments. It's a good idea to make sure your monthly payments arrive on time. However, this is quite common within the lending industry, and unlike some of its competitor lending companies, Upstart does not charge a check processing fee or a prepayment penalty. A prepayment penalty is 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 loan origination fee 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 Upstart has to offer, we suggest looking into the loan service provider. Especially since Upstart does not require a high 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. 


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User Reviews

Star Rating


336 Reviews

Review Breakdown

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Sentiment Criteria

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Quality of product or service
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June 29th, 2015 Roswell, GA

First, I love that Upstart is using more than just your credit score to determine eligibility and interest rates. Second, from my online application to uploading documents and talking to an Upstart representative, this was a great experience. I feel like a person to Upstart and not just a credit score or account number. I highly recommend this to everyone!

Anite Coro
June 29th, 2015 Miami, FL

Really easy to apply and great customer service!

Lucy Mason
June 29th, 2015 Philadelphia, PA

The system was fast, easy, and very comprehensive, and everyone was very easy to work with.

Kevin Fisher
June 29th, 2015 Rockwall, TX

Quick and easy process. Frequent and professional communications to guide through the process. I inquired on a Monday and had cash in my account on Friday with good terms. Only drawback is that my APR increased about 0.75% from the initial offer but I did not get a clear answer why. Will use them again.

Abigail Finn
June 29th, 2015

Upstart was a quick, easy, and seamless experience with much better rates than local and national banks to help reduce and consolidate my debt. I'm so thankful to have found this!

Jordan Bargas
June 29th, 2015 Citrus Heights, CA

Loved my experience with Upstart. Application process was quick and easy, and money was in my account day after approval. Love that they consider more than just a simple credit score, which is a terrible way to gauge someone's ability to pay. Thanks for helping me consolidate credit card debt by offering a great rate.

Michael Perry
June 26th, 2015 Aurora, CO

Awesome personal, friendly service and quick processing of my loan with no hassle.So much better than big banks with their impersonal rejections based solely on old credit history.

June 26th, 2015 Astoria, NY

Overall easy process.

June 26th, 2015 Chicago, IL

Very quick and easy. Would suggest to others.

Ross Dakin
June 25th, 2015 Palo Alto, CA

Very easy process, friendly staff, intuitive product, and great rates! Thanks Upstart!

June 25th, 2015 Washington, DC

Incredibly efficient and wonderfully friendly "no bs" approach! Highly recommended!

June 24th, 2015 Chicago, IL

There would actually categorize my experience as pre and post correspondence to the Executives at Upstart.After having been categorically declined, I wrote to Mr. Dave Girouard citing what I thought to be errors in the evaluation process.Afterwhich, the paperwork was re-reviewed and subsequently accepted....So I'd give a 0 on the initial part of the process, but then a 10 on the follow-up to my concerns.So overall, an 8 or 9 since the desired result was ultimately achieved.Very customer oriented at the end of the day.

Everett Moton
June 24th, 2015 Tulsa, OK

Very quick and efficient way to secure a loan. Excellent response times from the support staff. Requested documentation was minimal and simple to upload. Funds were deposited the day after loan approval. Just an all around great experience!

Allison R
June 24th, 2015 Chicago, IL

I was caught in an almost monthly cycle of payday and installment loans with insanely high interest rates. Every time I would finish paying off a loan, I would realize I'd be short on my bills the next month unless I took out another loan. My credit cards were maxed out. Money was one of my huge financial stresses. My Upstart loan gave me the chance to pay off my existing installment loans and credit cards. My credit score has gone up and because of that, I'm able to lower the interest rate and monthly payments on my auto loan.

Frank Arena
June 24th, 2015 WI

Friendly, Professional, efficient staff. A pleasure to do business with!

Todd Blodgett
June 23rd, 2015 Pittsburgh, PA

Easy, no hassle and fast! Pretty amazing!

boy avianto
June 22nd, 2015 Long Island City, NY

Easy application, quick verification. Overall great and painless experience.

Gregory Rise
June 22nd, 2015 Perham, MN

Pleased that the process went quickly.Too bad you do not accept PDF format on web upload, but PDF e-mail attachments worked.Laon proceeds ere in my account today, just as expected.Thanks

Faris Tadros
June 22nd, 2015 Troy, MI

Everyone I spoke with was very informed and helpful and best part was I received my loan within 24 hrs :-)

Russell Howard
June 22nd, 2015 Fort Myers, FL

Needed to reposition some credit card debt, and this process was quick, efficient, and the team was great to work with!

June 22nd, 2015 Lexington, VA

Everyone was incredibly helpful and kind. They made the process seem less intimidating.

Artie De Los Santos
June 22nd, 2015 New York, NY

Painless. Quick process and a very helpful staff to help smooth everything out. Can't say how great this company is enough!

Alberto Torres
June 22nd, 2015 New York, NY

The service was great, the website needs improvements.

June 22nd, 2015 Summerville, SC

Although my initial advisor stopped responding to emails, I was easily able to get through on the phone and speak with a person who said they would get someone to contact me within a couple hours and they did. Very smooth and personal experience.

June 22nd, 2015 Key West, FL

From start to finish, the process could not have been better. The loan rate I received was far better than several others I had also checked. The website was very easy to use. It was also easy to upload my documents. I received an incredibly fast response. Customer service was fantastic. I had my loan in hand in about 2 days. All-in-all a fantastic experience. I would highly recommend UpStart.

June 22nd, 2015 Cincinnati, OH

Very easy to work with. Good procedure. The interest rate advertising is a little misleading, but overall very competitive.

Anthony Zamparelli
June 22nd, 2015 Miami, FL

Honest, straight forward, and competitive rates. Changes the way I think about banking products.

June 19th, 2015 New York, NY

Very responsive - but sometimes a little too much contact. Requesting documents I had already submitted several times was a little frustrating as I was worried they hadn't been received. However, everyone I talked to was very nice and the process was incredibly quick.

June 19th, 2015 Wynnewood, PA

The process was quick and simple. My communications with the company were polite and professional. Credit card debt can seem crushing and overwhelming. This changes people's lives. Thank you!!!

Julianne Todd
June 19th, 2015 Arlington, TX

Easy application process. I had my loan in less than 24 hours. Nice team to work with!

antonio sanchez
June 19th, 2015 Cumming, GA

I like that you look just more than the credit score to provide a credit, very easy to get the loan and efficient process.

June 19th, 2015 Clive, IA

Everything was clear and easy to understand. The process was so quick and the person I spoke with was very helpful!

June 19th, 2015 Dallas, TX

Perfect! Just how a loan process should be! Fair, fast, and just an excellent overall experience.

Joe foley
June 19th, 2015 Bryn Mawr, PA

Excellent customer service from everyone that was involved Would do business again in a hearbeat

Sam Eppler
June 19th, 2015 Milwaukee, WI

Overall a great and easy experience. I would suggest being more clear about the up front interest charge, allowing the borrower to set a reoccurring payment that is above there minimum payment, and allowing a borrower to get a lower interest rate based off of there credit score if they have one.

June 19th, 2015 Triangle, VA

Quick process and very friendly staff! Thank you!!!