Choose a country
United States
Select a city
Select a city
Select language
Select country
Choose a country
United States
United States
Việt nam

The Pros and Cons of Taking Out a Personal Loan

17 min.

What is a Personal Loan?

Personal loans, like every other form of credit, have their set of advantages and disadvantages.

The Pros and Cons of Taking Out a Personal Loan

Some lenders, for example, charge very high fees that make getting credit very expensive overall. You should think about other financing options and compare them against the pros and cons of getting a loan before committing to one.

Read this article to find out about the pros and cons of getting a personal loan.

Personal loans are a type of consumer credit that people can get and use for almost anything. Personal loans, in contrast to mortgages and car loans, do not require that the money be put toward a particular goal.

Personal loans are installment loans. If you are approved for one, you will get a lump sum of cash that you will have to pay back in set amounts every month until the loan period is over.

A lender will look at both your credit history and your income to evaluate whether they think you can qualify for a personal loan. This is done so that the lenders can determine whether or not you will pay the loan back. The best interest rates are often reserved for applicants who have good incomes, great credit scores, and a low debt-to-income ratio.

All Today 30.11.2023 Personal Loans in the US
All Today 30.11.2023 Personal Loans in the US

Compare best personal loans for you today! Apply for a loan with free credit check.

Pros and Cons


  • Quick funds withdrawals. A personal loan application can be processed and funded within different timeframes. However, many online lenders promise instant or next-day cash. Personal loans can be an option if you need quick cash for car repairs or emergency travel. On the other hand, if you need access to cash quickly, you must investigate the steps involved in applying for a loan. Depending on when you apply, the loan amount, and how quickly your bank allows you to access the money after it has been disbursed, the actual time it takes to apply, be accepted and get loan cash can be longer.
  • Pay over time. A personal loan is a loan in which the borrower receives a single lump payment to utilize whatever they see fit, be it for immediate financial needs or future investments. Borrowers can make substantial purchases and spread out the payments over time without having to set aside a huge sum of money in front. Taking out personal loans might be a smart move when making essential purchases, but it can backfire if you use them to fund luxury items like a vacation or an expensive piece of furniture.
  • Encourage credit-building among borrowers. When you get a personal loan, you have to pay back the principal every month. There are three major credit reporting agencies: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Lenders often report your payment history to these agencies. Making all of your payments on time is a major factor in your credit score, accounting for 35% of your FICO score. It also means that missed payments or default might lower your score, making it more difficult to obtain credit in the future.
  • Useful for a wide range of applications. The adaptability of personal loans makes them a common source of funding for a wide variety of needs, from emergency car repairs to much-anticipated home renovations to major life events like weddings. While the exact purposes for which a loan can be used differ from one lender to the next, in general, the borrower is free to put the money toward anything he or she sees fit for their own home. Borrowing money for illicit purposes is strictly forbidden with personal loans. In addition, some loan companies have guidelines about how the money can be used, such as prohibiting it from being used to buy a house, pay for college, or launch a business.
  • Facilitate debt consolidation. Borrowers can get their finances to consolidate debts with a single installment payment. It simplifies your financial life by reducing the number of debts you need to keep track of. You can also save money on interest rates if your credit has improved since you first took out those other personal loans. Instead of depositing money into your account, some debt consolidation lenders will actually pay down your existing bills on your behalf.
  • Possess variable loan caps. Although it is important to shop around, most personal loans have a borrowing limit between $1,000 and $100,000. That is why most people can adjust the terms of their personal loans to suit their own financial situation. It may be more difficult to qualify for a personal loan of $100,000 than it would be for a smaller amount. If you need to finance a smaller purchase, though, you may be better off using a credit card or financing at the point of sale.
  • Provide reasonable prices. In most cases, the APR for a personal loan will be between 3% and 36%, with the best rates going to those who demonstrate exceptional financial responsibility when applying for the loan. Even though the maximum interest rate is rather high, the majority of applicants are approved for rates that are much more reasonable than those offered by traditional credit cards. Yet these rates are still greater than those for secured loans like home equity loans. When deciding whether or not to apply for a personal loan, it is important to first be prequalified with reputable lenders to find out what interest rate you'll be offered.
  • Get rid of the need to put up security. Borrowers of personal loans typically are not required to put up any sort of security. Forego the hassle and potential financial disaster of losing a valuable possession such as a home or car in the event of loan default by choosing this option instead. To counteract the additional risk to the lender, interest rates and eligibility requirements for unsecured loans tend to be higher.


Even if personal loans are useful, they are not always the best option. Before applying, you should think about the cons of personal loans listed below.

  • High interest rates. Low annual percentage rates (APRs) are available to those who apply for a personal loan and have excellent credit. Those with less-than-perfect credit may be charged much higher rates of up to 36%. This rate may be substantially higher than the rates offered by other forms of financing, such as home equity loans, HELOCs, student loans, and credit cards with 0% interest. Before you commit to a personal loan, investigate your options.
  • Demand security. If your credit is not good enough, you may need to put up collateral in order to get secured loans. The collateral may be required for a FICO credit score of 585 and lower. If you fail to repay a secured personal loan, the lender can take the collateral you put up. Houses, cars, boats, and CDs are all examples of common collateral for loans (CDs).
  • Consist of fines and costs. Many lenders may impose origination fees and application fees to cover the overhead of processing a loan. In the same way, if a borrower pays late or does not have the money on hand, they may be subject to fees. While the most competitive lenders often do not impose prepayment penalties, some institutions do. Keep a look out for hidden fees and penalties when applying for a personal loan. These might significantly affect your total interest paid.
  • Lead to pointless borrowing. Personal loans can be a good source of quick cash, but they can also put you in over your head if you are not careful. Think carefully about why you need the money and whether a personal loan is a good option before signing any loan agreement, no matter how small.
  • Cause harm to credit. Lenders report both on-time and late monthly payments to credit bureaus, just as they make positive payment history. Borrowers who are unable to make their loan payments on time or who default on their loans are, therefore, more likely to see a drop in their credit rating. Another downside to taking out a personal loan is that it will raise the borrower's outstanding debt, which makes up 30% of your FICO score.

How to Decide if the Personal Loan is Right for You

If you need money fast, a personal loan could be a good choice for you to consider. Learn how to determine if a personal loan is a right choice for you:

  • You need funds right away. Borrowers can get their money quickly from many lenders, especially those with an online presence.
  • Your credit rating is quite high. Borrowers with excellent credit histories are eligible for the most favorable interest rates.
  • You wish to consolidate high-interest debt. When used to pay off high-interest credit card balances, personal loans can be very helpful.
  • With this money, you can pay for things like rent and food. You may use a personal loan for anything from unexpected medical bills to house improvements.

Not everyone would benefit from taking out a personal loan. Personal loans still count as debt. Here are several situations in which a personal loan might not be a good idea:

  • You cannot put the money to good use. Getting a loan to put away some cash for a rainy day is tempting. But without a strategy for the application, you run the risk of wasting it on non-essentials and paying excessive interest in the process.
  • Overspending is a habit of yours. It might not make sense to get a personal loan to pay off your credit card debt if you plan to immediately start racking up a new credit card bill.
  • Monthly payments are too expensive for you. Think about the time frame and the regular installments for a personal loan. Check your monthly budget against the total cost of the loan using a personal loan calculator to see if it's manageable.
  • You do not have an immediate financial emergency. It may be preferable to save enough for a sizable purchase out of pocket rather than taking out a personal loan and making monthly payments on it for a number of years, with interest.

Personal Loan Alternatives

You should think about these other options before applying for a personal loan:

  • Low-interest credit cards. If you have a balance on a high-interest credit card, you may be able to transfer it to a new card that has a 0% interest rate for a limited time. If you can control your expenditure, this strategy has potential.
  • 401(k) loan. Because of the Coronavirus, legislation was passed that made it easier to withdraw money from retirement funds before the normal withdrawal age. If you take a loan against your retirement savings, you will have to repay the full amount plus interest. There are a couple of potential drawbacks to this financing. Any funds you withdraw will not participate in any future stock market gains and must be repaid immediately if you leave your employment.
  • Home equity loan or line of credit. With a home equity loan or line of credit (HELOC), you can get the money you need quickly in a lump sum or over time with interest. When compared to the interest rate on an unsecured personal loan, the rate on either of these will likely be much lower. Your home could be in jeopardy if you are unable to make the monthly loan payments.


What is the risk of taking out a personal loan?

High-interest rates, prepayment fees, origination costs, harm to your credit score, and an overwhelming debt load are all potential pitfalls of taking out a personal loan.

Does taking out a loan hurt your credit?

Applying for a personal loan can have little effect on your credit score, similar to the effect of applying for a mortgage or credit card. This is due to the fact that creditor inquiries (hard pulls) will have a negative impact on your score every time they are made.

What is the benefit of getting a personal loan?

A personal loan might help you organize your finances and pay off your existing debts more effectively. You can consolidate credit card debt and pay it off with the proceeds of a personal loan. If you consolidate debt, your monthly payment will be set, and the loan's term will be clearly defined.

Is a personal loan ever a good idea?

A personal loan is a useful tool in the fight against the elimination of expensive credit card debt. With personal loan funds, you can pay for things like rent and food. Paying for unexpected costs or completing a home improvement project are two more worthy uses of personal loans.

Is it good or bad to get a personal loan?

There are benefits and drawbacks to applying for a personal loan. If you need money for a sizable purchase but would prefer not to be constrained in your spending, a personal loan could be a smart option for you. This new loan may, however, temporarily lower your credit score, making it more difficult to get additional payday loans in the meantime.
The article was useful