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Upstart

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347 User Reviews

5.9

Overall Score

LAST UPDATED: April 8th, 2022

Upstart is a peer-to-peer lending (p2p lending) platform that offers financial solutions primarily for recent college graduates and young professionals. Borrowers can expect the following with an Upstart loan:

  • Loan amounts — $1,000-$50,000
  • Loan terms — 3 & 5 year
  • Rates — 8.27%–35.99% APR
  • Next-day funding
  • No prepayment penalty fee

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 major credit bureaus, increasing chance of approval.

Keep reading our 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.

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The Good

  • High Likelihood of Approval
  • Flexible Options, Fast Disbursements
  • Loan Amounts
  • Pre-Qualify with No Impact to Your Credit Score
  • Positive Customer Reviews

High Likelihood of Approval

This lender has a minimum credit score requirement of 620, but Upstart looks at other factors to determine rates and terms, and whether or not a borrower will be approved:

  • Education level
  • Area of study
  • Job history
  • Credit score
  • Years of credit

The fact that Upstart doesn't only look at credit score for approval is good news for recent college graduates or young professionals who may not have an established or extensive credit history.

Flexible Options, Fast Disbursement

The loan application process is very fast. Most borrowers are able to qualify and receive their funds in as little as one business 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.

Loan Amounts

Upstart personal loan amounts range from $1,000 to $50,000. Loan amounts borrowers qualify for are based on credit scores, income, and other determining factors provided on the loan application. 

Note that some states have differing minimum loan amounts that may affect your eligibility for smaller loans. Therefore, make sure that you check the specific loan terms available in your state of residence.

Pre-Qualify with No Impact to Your Credit Score

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 credit check inquiry, which does not negatively affect your credit, as a hard inquiry does. 

If you choose to accept the loan offer and continue through the loan process, Upstart will do a hard credit check. This process is standard within the industry and will have a temporary impact on your credit score.

Positive Customer Reviews

Over 80 percent of the 300 plus reviews for Upstart personal loans are four and five stars. This speaks volumes to the customer satisfaction that many of it's clients feel.

Many commend Upstart as an online lender that is fast, transparent and trustworthy. 

In addition, It should be noted that when it comes to Best Company's sentiment criteria, Upstart reviews come in around two-and-a-half stars for individual breakdowns. Make sure to read both the positive and negative reviews to see if an Upstart loan is the right choice for you.

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The Bad

  • Higher-Than-Average Rates
  • May Not Be Ideal for Debt Consolidation
  • Fees Can Add Up

Higher-Than-Average Rates

If you're looking for a low interest rate for your personal loan, Upstart may not be the best choice for you. Upstart has a slightly higher APR range compared to its competitors, with an APR Range of 8.27 percent to 35.99 percent* (as of January 2021).

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:

  • Debt-to-income ratio of 18%
  • 75.5% college educated
  • Weighted average income of $81,782
  • In the mid-twenties to mid-thirties age range

While 73.3 percent of Upstart borrowers state that they intend to use the loan for credit card debt consolidation, this might not be the best option for everyone, depending on the rates available to you. Because the above requirements can be challenging to meet, you may not receive the most competitive rates, which may not be the best option if you are looking to lower the interest rate on your existing debt.

Fees Can Add Up

Upstart unsecured personal loans do have fees to be aware of. Below you'll find the three most common fees that you are likely to face.

  • Origination fee — The origination fee is 0 percent to 8 percent of the loan amount and 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.
  • Late payment fee — The Late payment fee is a standard rate of 5 percent or $15 (whichever is greater) after being 10 days past due your personal loan payment. Make sure your monthly payment arrives on time. However, late fees for monthly payments like this are pretty common within the lending industry.
  • ACH Return or Check Refund Fee — This $15 fee is issued if bank transfers (ACH) or checks are returned or fail due to insufficient funds in your account or for any other reason.

On the upside, unlike some competing online lenders, Upstart does not charge a check processing fee or a prepayment penalty fee (an additional charge for paying off a loan early).

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The Bottom Line

When choosing a lending company, Upstart is a great option to consider, especially 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, and to receive funding as soon as one business day after applying.

Potential borrowers should be aware of the origination and late payment fees, common in the personal loan industry, in addition to higher rates than other lenders (8.27 percent to 35.99 percent APR, as of January 2021). However, Upstart has no prepayment penalty fee or check processing charges.

With all it has to offer, we suggest considering Upstart for your personal loan needs - especially since Upstart does not require a high minimum credit rating, taking additional factors (such as education, job history, and income) into account to determine eligibility, and offering same-day approval and funding. In addition, the majority of Upstart loan reviews are positive, with customers highlighting a quick and easy application and approval process, great customer service, and competitive rates.

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

*The full range of available rates varies by state. The average 3-year loan offered across all lenders using the Upstart Platform will have an APR of 25.79 and 36 monthly payments of 37 per $1,000 borrowed. There is no down payment and no prepayment penalty. Average APR is calculated based on 3-year rates offered in the last 1 month. Your loan amount will be determined based on your credit, income, and certain other information provided in your loan application. Not all applicants will be approved.

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Star Rating

4.2

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347 Reviews

Review Breakdown

5 grade

63%

4 grade

22%

3 grade

1%

2 grade

0%

1 grade

13%

Sentiment Criteria

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Quality

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Patrick Miller Belmar, NJ

I was able to secure a debt-consolidation loan in 2 days and the money was deposited in my bank account on the following business day. They were able to electronically link to my bank account for verification, I don't know if that is why my approval was so fast. Everything was done online, I didn't have to call anyone. The only thing that surprised me was the origination fee that was deducted from the amount borrowed, I don't remember seeing them say that at first, but it didn't surprise me in retrospect, and I was able to cancel out of the loan to request a slightly higher amount to cover the fee, which was approved immediately. The rate that I was offered was very competitive, my credit rating was not good and I was doing this to pay off credit cards to raise my score, and the offered rate was about 1/2 of what I was seeing offered elsewhere. I'm glad that they took into account my education, etc, to see that I was worth the credit risk and could offer that rate. Even now I'm getting offers from other places and they don't even come close to the rate that I got. I am happy and they are getting their money paid back with interest, so it's win-win for both of us. I'd definitely recommend them to others.

4 years ago

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Elaine Panuccio Croydon, PA

Of course, the company needs to get something out of you, so they charge a certain percentage of your loan and take that fee out before sending you the lump sum. I applied, was approved, and received my loan within a week. I was very impressed by how quick this happened. Also, given my interest rates with my 2 credit card companies, even with the fee that Upstart charges, I'll be paying much, much less in the long run vs. continuing to be able to make only the minimum monthly payments on my credit cards. I estimated that it would have taken me 10-12 years to pay off my debt from my credit cards, but I used the loan from Upstart to completely pay off the credit cards. My credit score increased dramatically and my payment is about $100 less per month compared to when I was paying off the credit cards by month separately. It is a 5-year loan that automatically is taken out of my account and it has helped greatly. I took a star off for the fee that they charge, otherwise I have no complaints.

4 years ago

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De'Neil Daley Cleveland, OH

Hello, I just went through the process of getting a loan through upstart. I have a decent credit score, but was denied at other places because of my debt to income ratio (student loans are my only debt, I don't even have a car note). The process was easy, I got my money in a few days. They get an 8 because it says that there is no minimum amount, but I had to take out 6k instead of the 5k I wanted because apparently 6k is the minimum in my state. Also my interest rate is 17% with a credit score of 676 (that might be helpful to some of you). So I am paying $214.28 monthly for 3 years. I will be going through another source to basically refinance this loan for a lower interest rate, but the process for that is so much longer and I needed the money sooner. So all in all, it's fast and convenient, but interest rates aren't great and there may be a minimum amount required, also they take $360 from every loan they give so I got $5640 instead of $6,000 even.

6 years ago

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Annie Honolulu, HI

We were looking for a way to consolidate our high interest credit card debt and saw your sponsored Facebook ad. We had used our credit cards to start our business and needed a way to finally get out from underneath the monthly finance change and high payments. We recently had great success with Kabbage to access a line of business capital and so we decided to take a chance on Upstart because "Why not? This could be the ticket to digging us out of a hole since no banks will help us!" Sure enough, within 2 minutes of visiting your website, we were offered just the amount we needed to help pay down most of our debt. The interest rate and monthly payback amount were both quite reasonable. Once I accepted the loan, it only took 1 more day to be approved and the next day the money was in my account. I've already paid off two credit cards and feel elated. Thank you for taking a chance on us when no one else would.

6 years ago

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Kennie Boynton Beach, FL

The online application was very easy to complete and the approval process was super fast. I completed my application in the evening and received approval the next day. I was able to consolidate all my credit card debt under one loan and now have just one payment. The best part, with the low rate and 3 year payoff plan, I can see the light at the end of tunnel of credit card debt.

6 years ago

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Doug Julius Ypsilanti, MI

We had a good experience with Upstart. The rep, Nishani, was kind and respectful and very responsive to our questions. We received our loan on the very day promised. Our only complaint would be we wish we had known upfront that there would be a $750 origination fee. We would have asked to borrow a bit more so we could pay off the total debt we wanted to clear.

6 years ago

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Stephen Ehele MN

Fantastic process, efficient, high-quality. On-line process was straight forward and timely. Had funds in my account quickly; interest rate and other terms were very fair. Only thing keeping this from a "10" was some challenge with phone agent who completed the 5 minute verification call. Her phone skills/tone could use some refining. All other aspects of this were world-class. Highly recommend.

6 years ago

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Michael Chicago, IL

I have high interest credit cards and wanted to consolidate them and pay them off. They offered me a great interest rate, I provided the required docs, did a phone verification, and about 3 days later received my loan. It's a lot of process but pretty easy steps. Would recommend to anyone who needs a short term loan (has to be paid with in 3 years) with decent interest rate.

6 years ago

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Maggie 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!

7 years ago

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Annette Beaverton, OR

I was skeptical--a link from Facebook for a loan with a great rate based on more than a credit score? The link lead me to an online application form that needed all my personal information. I exited the site and did a comprehensive search of the company and read all the reviews. Any hint of a scam and I was deleting the cookie! However, I found no hint of a scandal. What I did find was a company with excellent customer service--I was assigned a personal account service rep--who works efficiently over the internet, makes fast decisions and delivers on their promise. Don't fear the link!

7 years ago

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Phillip Edwards Chapel Hill, NC

The approval process was relatively easy to complete, and being able to see how various loan amounts would translate into APRs and monthly repayments was very helpful for planning purposes. I do wish that it was a bit clearer that the origination fee is actually deducted from the loan principal (rather than added onto the amount of the loan requested).

7 years ago

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r Marietta, OH

Very helpful staff. Loans are at very reasonable rates. A mistake in my birthdate at one of the credit reporting agencies caused a 3 week delay, but Upstart stuck with me and helped me through making the correction, and then completed the loan when the correction was made. I am sure the process would have been almost effortless had not the reporting agency been in error.

7 years ago

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Floyd Tulsa, OK

I lost my job and got myself into a bad situation with my credit and with high-interest debt. Few lenders are interested in the story behind the numbers. Upstart, however, made it possible to refinance debt at 25% interest down to under 13%. I can regain my financial footing much faster thanks to Upstart. Pros: painless, easy application process. They consider much more than just your credit score when considering your eligibility for a loan. Excellent customer service. Fast funding. Up-front and honest about additional fees. Cons: Loan origination fees are steep (5%).

7 years ago

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Heather Dratler Arlington, VA

Fast, easy, great customer service. My final APR ended up being slightly higher than my original quote, but the monthly payments were the same, and it was due to how I originally reported information. I recommend that people try to be as accurate as possible in the initial rate check to avoid surprises! I've already recommended Upstart to several friends and will continue to do so - huge money saver that will help me get out of credit card debt faster.

7 years ago

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Sue 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!

7 years ago

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TT 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.

7 years ago

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Andres 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.

6 years ago

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B. Johnson 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!

7 years ago

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Daniel Lake Orion, MI

We went back and forth on a few things but I got a rate lower than initially quoted and I worked with Michael through the process. It was pretty easy. The rate is great and I love that it's fixed. Great company and great idea. Big Banks just don't get it. Upstart does.

7 years ago

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Frankie Annor Jr. New York, NY

The process was easy and quick. The staff was helpful and really made the goal to cut down debt a reality. I was confused about needing some extra documents I wasn't aware of, just because it would have slowed the process. But aside from that, all good.

7 years ago

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Robert Shurmer Washington, DC

Working with Upstart was BY FAR the easiest and most stress-free experience I've every had with a financial institution. Consolidating high-interest CC debt into a single monthly payment is a great boost to stability. And all was accomplished via my desk-top: computer transactions and a single 10 min. skype call.

7 years ago

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Karla Eskro Seattle, WA

There was quite a bit of information to provide to verify who I am and employment, etc. yet I can understand that was needed. All in all, it was a simple procedure and the staff was helpful. I would recommend Upstart to anyone.

7 years ago

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calvin Chicago, IL

everything went great. another company was offering me the same loan but for a 25% apr. I got it done with upstart with a 15% apr. the only thing I think they should improve is when a customer makes a salary and bonuses that are consistent. Other than that, everything went great.

7 years ago

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James Hunter Stockbridge, GA

Overall the experience was good. The only question I had is if I submitted my graduate transcript showing my Masters degree being awarded. Why does the loan officer need to see a picture of my bachelors degree? It didn't make any since. If a customer has a master degree they had to have a bachelor's degree.

7 years ago

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Thomas Brooklyn, NY

Very fast and efficient. After a short phone interview I was asked to upload documentation and was approved in 48 hours for a loan of $3000-8800. I haven't built a credit score yet, so other financial institutions wouldn't have been as helpful.

7 years ago

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Katrice Memphis, TN

I found the process to secure a loan very straight forward. The language used in all the documentation was clear. The representatives that helped me through the process responded quickly and thoroughly. The emails that updated me throughout the process were clear and concise and lead me easily through each step of the process.

7 years ago

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Kevin Fisher 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.

7 years ago

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Everett Moton 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!

7 years ago

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Courtney 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.

7 years ago

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ioana uricaru Middlebury, VT

Upstart was very thorough and professional. I had an excellent experience with their customer service representatives and they inspired confidence much more than the similar companies I was considering working with.

6 years ago

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Mark Quamme Saint Paul, MN

Everyone has been fantastic to work with! They were thorough in explaining, wanted to make sure I was getting the best rate possible, and made sure everything was set to go. I was very thankful for the help!

6 years ago

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Mark 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

6 years ago

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Barbara German Fort Myers, FL

The process was quick and easy. The rep I spoke to on the phone was easy to talk to and explained the loan thoroughly. I'm really hoping this service helps me to manage my debt to become debt-free!

7 years ago

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Susan Boggs Columbus, OH

The only thing I was disappointed in was the "quote" was significantly different than my actual loan terms. It felt a little like "bait and switch." Otherwise, I am completely satisfied.

7 years ago

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Julie Howard Scottsdale, AZ

The experience was awesome! Very prompt communication and processing ..... 2 days from application to funds deposited. The staff was knowledgeable, polite, and made me feel important.

7 years ago

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katie Long Beach, NY

upstart was great! They made the loan process easy. The only thing I would change is if you don't get your paperwork in within a certain amount of time it will timeout. But the second loan when through in minutes !

7 years ago

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Victor Wolfforth, TX

Upstart has given me the opportunity to get out of those high interest credit cards and get a low rate that will help pay off this debt in 3 years instead of 6 years. Thank you Upstart!

7 years ago

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Michael Perry 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.

7 years ago

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Gregory Rise 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

7 years ago

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Mitchell Warnecke 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.

6 years ago

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Gregory Bert

Customer service was thorough and professional from the start. There were no hidden agendas and the people I spoke to were pleasant to deal with.

6 years ago

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f. 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.

6 years ago

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Jessica R. Boston, MA

The company was very helpful and the application process was easy with a great response time. I would recommend this company without hesitation.

7 years ago

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Pedro Brooklyn, NY

the application was simple and very easy to follow. I was very happy how fast the loan was approved and it was sent to my bank account

7 years ago

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Stephanie Glencoe, MN

Really please with the people I worked with that told me additional documents on investments to submit that lowered my rate to about 6.0%.

7 years ago

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Justin M Santa Monica, CA

Great, easy to work with. Nice to work with modern companies, not these corporate giants that only care about the bottom line.

7 years ago

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antonio sanchez 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.

7 years ago

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Anna Chicago, IL

Upstart application process was a breeze. UX on the website was impressive. Very prompt replies from CSRs.

7 years ago

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stuart raphael Westbury, NY

Working with Upstart was a fairly easy process. I got my money quickly. I would definitely recommend them.

7 years ago

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Mike Bowers Cheney, WA

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

6 years ago