LendKey was founded in 2007 by Vince Passione and focuses on connecting millions of online borrowers with thousands of institutions. It's transforming the $3.2 trillion consumer lending market using credit unions and community banks. The company is cloud-based and offers private student loans and refinancing, auto loans, home improvement loans, and cuGreenLoans.

Borrowers have the ability to pay just interest on their loans for the first four years. After that, they resume the payments plus regular interest.

The Good

  • Easy Application
  • No Hidden Fees
  • Cosigner Release
  • Good Customer Service
  • Reasonable Pricing Options

Easy Application

Visitors to the LendKey site can see in minutes how much money they can save with student debt refinancing. The application process is easy and can be completed quickly. By filling out a few questions online, borrowers can access loans from LendKey's network. From there, they can instantly see rates that can be customized to their own loan amount, location, and credit score. As an added convenience, borrowers can pick a loan term and monthly payment. Everything is done online, including uploading the necessary documents.

No Hidden Fees

There is no application or origination fee. This company is transparent with their fees and doesn't seem to have any hidden ones.

Cosigner Release

The company conveniently offers a cosigner release option. This release is eligible after you make 12 to 36 consecutive, on-time, full principal and interest payments.

Good Customer Service

LendKey focuses on customer service. Every time we called, they answered. LendKey representatives are with you from start to finish throughout refinancing. The customer service team is dedicated to helping people get through the process in a painless way, all while avoiding fees.

Reasonable Pricing Options

The average LendKey client saves around $10,500 in student debt refinancing. Borrowers have the ability to customize their term and monthly payment. Because LendKey does not go through big banks, it can be more flexible with its interest rates and plans. In fact, interest rates are lower than average in the industry, and some of the lowest we have seen.

For unemployed students, borrowers have the option to pay interest only. Additionally, lenders have been known to consider academic credentials to give better rates. People who set up automatic payments can save .25 percent on their interest rate. Those who hit their repayment period and pay off 10 percent of their loan are reduced 1 percent off their interest rate (which is tax deductible).

LendKey conveniently offers a 30-day, no-tax or interest return, if customers are not satisfied.

Check rates with Lendkey

The Bad

  • Website Lacks Key Information
  • High Credit Score Required
  • Social Media Interaction Lacking
  • Negative Customer Reviews

Website Lacks Key Information

While the website states LendKey offers flexible plans and 5, 7, 10, 15, and 20-year terms for student debt refinancing, the company does not provide any additional information. This information would be helpful to know upfront before making a decision. LendKey is also unclear about its minimum loan amount, as different and conflicting amounts are mentioned throughout the website.

High Credit Score Required

The minimum credit score LendKey takes is around 680, and they require a strong credit history. This alone has the potential to eliminate interested clients, especially since clientele is most likely going to be young college students.

Social Media Interaction Lacking

LendKey does not focus a lot of attention on social media interaction with clients over platforms like Facebook or Twitter. While they post occasionally, they do not respond to questions or inquiries, and it looks like their Facebook account often gets spammed by other loan company representatives. They received a 3.7 out of 5-star rating on Facebook.

Negative Customer Reviews

Some customers say the website is not user-friendly, and the process of uploading documents online is confusing. Others explain that if they have multiple loans, it is confusing to know which loan they are paying with how the program works.

The Bottom Line

LendKey is an established company that offers low rates for student debt refinancing. Repayment terms are flexible, and there are a lot of convenient ways to lower payments. Everything is done online and the application is simple to fill out.

The website is not as user-friendly or clear as it could be. Additionally, LendKey requires a 680 or higher credit limit, which can be a significant barrier of entry for many college graduates who may not have established a strong credit history

However, with LendKey, the pros outweigh the cons. It is a solid option to look into when thinking about student loan refinancing.

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User Reviews

Star Rating

2.2
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9 Reviews

Review Breakdown

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22%
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11%
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0%
2 star
11%
1 star
56%

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V
July 12th, 2019 Chelmsford, MA

My husband started his current job last March. Unlike other companies we've gotten loans through, LendKey refuses to use his current salary (as evidenced in his two most recent paystubs and his original offer letter) and instead insists on assuming his income is the same as his 2018 reported income, which is significantly lower because he spent the first 2 months of the year at a much lower paying job. If they'd told me up front that that's how they were going to calculate his income, I wouldn't have wasted the time and the hard pull.

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Jim
February 22nd, 2019 Cedar Springs, MI DETAILS
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I have a loan with LendKey, I have found them difficult to work with and very annoying. It is a 5k loan and they insist on paying the interest monthly but if your a day late paying interest you get a barrage of emails and phone calls. The company is inefficient and not service orientated. I have since switched picket and hatcher, much better to work with and quarterly interest payments and no annoyances.

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Ryan McGowan
August 3rd, 2018 Aberdeen, MD

Don't bother applying for a loan with LendKey if you are a postdoc who pays your own taxes. They will tell you you are approved at first but then insist you are self-employed and reject your loan application on the basis that your employer doesn't withhold taxes. At least the customer service agents are friendly. Waste of time.

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Dean
May 25th, 2018 New York, NY

LendKey was super helpful in helping me complete my application and cut my interest rates nearly in half. Easy to use and friendly when you call in.

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Nikki McMillan
May 16th, 2018 Leonard, MI DETAILS
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I regret taking my loans out for school with Lendkey. They willnot refinance me even with a co-signer who makes more than enough and has great credit. I also have good credit and somehow still get denied. This company doesn't want to help you, I promise you will regret working with them.

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J B
October 17th, 2017

Stay AWAY from these incompetent, disorganized buffoons ! SAVE YOURSELF THE HUSTLE ! Sallie Mae my lovely Sallie May! ALWAYS SENDS THE BILL PROMPTLY AHEAD OF TIME,* WITH AN ENVELOPE INSIDE * All I got to do is put in the check and a stamp on it. These MORONS they want you to WASTE YOUR TIME ( TO SAVE THEIR PAPER ) to remember your password, to get in their stupid website (to lure you to get another loan from them), and only after you call them and demand it repeatedly they agree to send you a bill ( BUT NO ENVELOPE ); Sometimes the bill never comes (THEIR AUDACITY THEY WARN YOU AT THE TIME OF ARRANGEMENT that you may still have to log in their website and print the statement in case it does not arrive by the mail). Then they send you a note of delinquency through e-mail --- CHECK THIS OUT --- after you had paid them a few days prior and after they finally applied your payment; the note of delinquency dated 1 day after date of application of payment; leaving you in bewilderment wondering "WHAT THE HECK IS GOING ON!" Total hustle; YOU DON'T NEED THIS CRAP! Disclaimer : I am not affiliated with any loan company. I AM A TRUE AND UNFORTUNATE BORROWER whose account was established with another company (RARITAN CREDIT UNION) which sold it to Lendkey (not that they were any better, but the account was still new}. Lendkey THIS REVIEW WAS LONG TIME COMING.

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lori
July 5th, 2017 Elmwood Park, IL

Consolidated my loans with Lendkey when they calling themselves ECSI. At first it was great, I got a good rate, then they changed the name, hiked up the interest rate (and my monthly payment) without any warning. Good luck trying to work out a monthly budget when they change the rates without telling you!! Just another greedy corporate loan company.

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Shannon M
February 13th, 2017

I tried several lenders (that were ranked higher on this site) and marketplace sites, and found the lowest rate with a credit union on LendKey. Their customer service was also the most helpful and friendly, which was the biggest reason I chose to go with them.

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J.R.
May 10th, 2016 Saint Michael, MN

I would say that I'm fairly happy with Lendkey. They weren't my initial choice but after having a bad experience with Sofi and Commonbond I checked them out. Lendkey got my loan processed in 2 days and with a lower rate than Commonbond. I don't mind paying a Credit Union through Lendkey as long as they lower my rate and don't try any shady business. So far so good. I recommend checking them out.