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Upstart Loans Reviews

Interest Rates 4.66-29.99%
Loan Amounts $1,000-50,000
Min Credit Score 640
  • Pros
  • Intuitive application process
  • Loans structured around your needs
  • Cons
  • Very short maximum term
  • Origination fees
  • Processing fees

Upstart is an online lender, founded by ex-members of Google's enterprise team. Upstart prides itself on its intuitive loan approval process. Unlike banks, they don't simply look at your credit score. They look at a range of factors that can affect your ability to responsibly handle a loan like your level of education, the school you attended, your areas of study, job history as well as your credit history.

Upstart structures loans around your need for them. You are able to choose the reason you want the loan whether it is to pay off credit cards, pay off student loans, pay for college or class, start or expand a business and many more options. This, along with their approval criteria, means you have a loan personalized to you. Upstart claims to offer rates that are 30% lower than other lenders.

Upstarts loans have to be paid off within 3 years. This maximum term is shorter than many other lenders, which is a double edged sword. A shorter term means higher monthly payments but less money paid in interest overall.

Upstart is a young company, starting in April 2012, but it already has a reputation for ease of use and good customer service. Pursuing online user review sites will general reveal that customers were surprised by how simple Upstarts process was.

Unfortunately, Upstart charges origination fees of 1 to 6% of the target amount, late fees of 5% of the late amount ($15 if that's more) and a $15 processing fee when you pay by checks. These are not uncommon in this industry, especially the late fee. You can avoid processing and origination fees with other lenders, but considering the level of service and generally low APR, these fees aren't deal breakers.

Intuitive Approval Process

Additional incentives that you should consider in using this company for a loan are, due to its peer-to-peer lending platform, Upstart has a very good business model and factors in data that we previously mentioned from areas traditional lenders may not consider, such as your college, GPA, work history and test scores. This can help if you're a student who's struggling to pay bills or if you've graduated and are now hit with heavy school loan repayments and want to consider a loan to consolidate your debt. According to the American Enterprise Institute, some are even finding that this may be a better alternative to traditional school loans.

A Trustworthy Lender

Reviews for Upstart personal loans have been coming in and sites like Credit Karma are indicating that the loan company is doing well. With an average score of 4.7 based on 779 noted reviews, Upstart is being met well with the online community looking for small loans. A few comments indicated that applicants were impressed with the low costs and thought there might be hidden fees, but were pleasantly surprised by the simple loan process.

Upstart is also making a lot of headway in terms of the amount of press it has received. Aside from its impressive crowd funding start-up fund that raised an impressive $5.9 million dollars, its Forbes coverage, articles in Wired and VentureBeat, Economist Bryan Caplan has made mention of it in his EconLog blog.

Upstart Personal Loan Purposes

Common uses for their loans include paying off credit cards, consolidating debts, paying off student loans, taking a course or boot camp, paying for college or grad school, making a large purchase, relocating, paying off medical bills, starting or expanding a business, buying a car or using the funds for something else.

It's worth noting that, due to rates being 30% lower than traditional loans, a lot of people are using to consolidate existing loans into a smaller bill. This is a great incentive for anyone who is looking for a way to cover credit card debt, especially given that interest rates on credit cards can be as high as 23-26%.

It's recommended that for anyone thinking about consolidating their loans in this manner or just interested in applying for a loan with Upstart to go to their site and apply in their easy 2-minute application. They will ask about employment and education and once you accept the terms, your money is ready the next day. You can then set up auto repayments and the good news is if you want to pay your loan off early, you can. There is no pre-payment fee.

Loan Specifics

A typical loan term based on borrowing $10,000 may come back with an APR of 8.29% and a monthly payment of $305. Upstart's site indicates that the average loan APR is 16% over 36-months. Loan amounts vary from as little as $3,000 to as much as $35,000. While they don't have an income requirement, Upstart does require a debt to income ratio that has to be lower than 50%.

As with any loan that is taken out, when you start an Upstart loan, be sure that you don't take out more than you can afford. With such easy terms, sometimes students and those who haven't paid back large amounts of money should factor in if they can meet their monthly obligations. If an applicant is currently having problems making payments with one credit card or loan company, switching to Upstart may not be the total answer but it can help.

Other Considerations

Consider also tapping into free debt services that can help to find ways to reduce and eliminate excessive spending and help to lower other monthly costs. Additionally, for those who are about to declare bankruptcy, or for anyone with high debts, having a loan with easy terms can help as it can save applicants from collections and high interest rates to give them a chance to get caught up on their debts. Just be careful in taking out high loans for a new car or that dream cruise. Applicants should always be responsible with their money and look for ways to work on and increase their savings goals.

Considering Upstart is still a relatively new company as it's only been in existence since 2012, they are quickly gaining momentum. With positive reviews, easy to use features, and easy terms and approval, Upstart may be a new trend that can help make debt consolidation and bill payments easier.


Upstart is a new service but it is already made a name for itself in the industry. The intuitive approval process, the good customer service and competitive rates make this company a solid choice.

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Upstart Reviews

Average Customer Rating

12 User Reviews

User Rating Distribution

5 Stars 8
4 Stars 3
3 Stars 1
2 Stars 0
1 Star 0
Recommended Good interest rates Require lots of documents

Even though I don't have the best credit rating, the interest rate Upstart offered me was one of the lowest. They ask for a lot of documents and would still ask for more information even when I'd sent everything they asked previously, so process was a bit slow, but was worth it.

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Recommended Great communication and customer service None

Thank you Upstart for an easy and stress free process and help to getting me back on track!

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Recommended Hassle free process none

If you're looking for a loan, go with Upstart. An amazing company, friendly and helpful staff that know what they are doing and the whole process was hassle free.

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Recommended Smooth process, good communication None

Upstart are one of the best companies I have ever dealt with. The customer service is fantastic, the application process was smooth and the communication from them all the way through is the best.

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Recommended Helps credit score Higher interest rate then some companies

Once I was approved the money was in my account within a few days and I paid off my three credit cards to have just one monthly payment! The only downside is the interest rate is higher then some loans, but when I applied my credit score was low. Having had the loan for 3 months my credit rating is improving which is fantastic!

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Recommended Fast process and good communication No cons

The customer service reps are fantastic! They are helpful and the application is quick and easy and the communication is excellent all the way through. Money was in my bank within days!

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Recommended Professional and trustworthy None

I've been recommending Upstart to all my family and friends! They have been nothing but professional and super efficient form the start. The customer service is brilliant and the approval is quick and hassle free!

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Recommended Helpful and friendly customer service Long approval time

The initial approval time took a lot longer then I thought it would, after giving all the details they needed I had to chase them 3 times on the phone over a week before I was accepted. Since then however it has all been fine, and has really helped me with my finances.

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Recommended Low interest rates Loan Fees

I can't fault the customer service reps, who are friendly and knowledgable, and also I have been given a very good interest rate. But I was not made aware that fees would be taken from the loan amount I requested, this was annoying as it meant I couldn't clear all my debts and still had to make payments for a small amount on a credit card. Just be aware when applying that you might want to ask for more and fined out about the fees.

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Recommended Efficient and quick process None

I recommend Upstart to anyone looking for a loan. Great interest rates and efficient.

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Recommended Fast payment No cons

Within a few days of applying the money was in my account. Helped me clear all my credit card debts, so I am now making one payment with a much lower interest rate. Thanks Upstart!

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Recommended Simple application Interest rate increased

Upstart make applying for a loan simple and quick, however the interest rate I was given when I applied increased when I got all the documents and forms sent back. I had not been made aware of this and they refused to give me the lower rate, as it's in their terms and conditions that it can increase. If you choose upstart then make sure you read the small print.

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