The online lending space has grown so quickly over the past few years that there are now hundreds of providers offering their services.
On the one hand, this is good for the consumer, insofar that strong competition often results in ever-more competitive lending rates.
On the other hand, this can make it somewhat difficult to know which provider to go with. Moreover, it can be a highly time-consuming task to individually check each and every provider with the view of finding the best deal.
That’s where Credible can help.
The online platform aims to become the go-to marketplace for all-things loans. Whether you’re looking to obtain a personal loan, student loan, student loan refinancing, credit card, or even mortgage refinancing – Credible allows you to compare multiple providers via a single hub.
If you’re thinking about using Credible to obtain financing, we would suggest that you first read our comprehensive review. We’ll discuss everything you need to know, such as what services the platform covers, who is eligible to use it, whether you need to pay any fees, and anything else we think you should know.
Let’s start by finding out what Credible is.
What is Credible?
Launched in 2012 and based in San Francisco, Credible is a comparison website that makes it super easy to compare a range of financial products linked to credit.
While the main focus of the platform was originally personal loans, Credible has since expanded to a number of other popular markets. This includes products aimed at students, such as student loans and student loan refinancing, as well as mortgages and credit cards.
The overarching concept is simple. Upon entering your financing requirements into the Credible website, the platform will recommend the most suitable lenders as per your individual circumstances.
This will be based on your financial health, current relationship with debt, and other factors such as the amount of money you want to borrow, and for how long.
It is important to note that Credible is not actually a lender. On the contrary, they simply match you up with one of the many lenders they have formed a partnership with. As such, while the Credible network of lenders is reasonably extensive, you do stand the chance of missing out on an even better deal elsewhere.
Nevertheless, as per the company’s claim that it brings “simplicity, choice and unbiased support to all of life’s important financial decisions”, Credible aims to make the loan application process jargon-free.
This means that when your loan options are displayed, the platform will break the important and material information down into Layman terms so that it can be understood by the novice.
So now that you have a better understanding of what Credible is, in the next section of our review we are going to unravel the platform’s main services in more detail.
If you’re in the market for a personal loan, then it is well worth seeing what Credible can find.
In fact, as the hallmark product covered by Credible, the platform offers a Best Rate Guarantee on the rates it finds on your behalf. In a nutshell, if you find a better rate than that found by Credible, the platform will give you $200.
You will be able to enquire about a personal loan from anywhere between $1,000 and $100,000, which is quite a vast range. We normally find that personal loan comparison websites are not suited for larger amounts, although at $100,000, this is highly comprehensive.
As is common practice with most platforms, you will need to let Credible know what you need the money for. However, the good news is that the platform accepts applications for pretty much any purpose.
Whether it’s for debt consolidation, home improvement, wedding expenses, career development, moving expenses, or a good old vacation, Credible are happy to give you a quote. In terms of the rates on offer, this can also vary quite wildly.
For those with a good credit rating, the best rate on offer is 4.99% APR. There is quite the disparity in the public domain regarding the lowest rate on offer, which indicates that Credible updates this on a frequent basis.
However, for those with less than ideal credit, this can shoot up to a whopping 36%. Nevertheless, you get to the view the rate before you actually proceed, so you are never under any obligation to take what you are given.
One of the best thing about using the Credible platform for your personal loan requirements is that you can perform a soft credit check. This means that by entering your financial requirements, you get to check your rates without it affecting your credit score. In fact, lenders won’t be able to see that you actually made the search.
What are the Requirements to Qualify for a Credible Loan?
Credible is somewhat vague in their explanation of what is required to obtain a loan through its comparison platform.
At the absolute minimum, you will need to be a U.S. citizen, or a U.S. resident with a valid social security number. Moreover, you will need to be at least 18 years old to apply.
In terms of the required credit standing, Credible explain that you need to have a ‘Good’ credit rating. According to leading credit bureau agency Experian, a credit score of 700 or more is considered ‘Good’.
On top of this, Credible also note that you need to have a ‘steady’ income. Once again, it remains to be seen what the platform classes as steady. Nevertheless, it is reasonable to suggest that at the very least, you will need to be in full-time employment to qualify.
Personal Loan Fees and Terms
One of the great things about using Credible is that the platform does not charge you any fees. This means that you get to search multiple lenders at the click of a button without it affecting your credit report, free of charge. This makes the Credible platform really appealing, as you essentially have nothing to lose by seeing what rates you can get.
In terms of how long you can borrow funds for, you can choose between two and seven years. While this is likely to cover most circumstances, it is somewhat limited for those that are looking for a shorter-term loan. For example, those looking to pay the loan off in 12 months are not catered for at Credible.
The Personal Loan Application Process
As is standard with most online comparison sites, you will need to enter your personal information in the same way that would were you to go direct with the lender themselves. Typically, you will need to provide Credible with the following:
- The amount that you want to borrow
- The term of the loan
- Why you need to borrow the funds
- Your date of birth
- Details pertaining to your education
- Your employment status
- How much you earn each year
- What you think your current credit score is
Once you’ve gone through the basics, you should receive your prequalified rates in under 2 minutes. This means that you will need to provide further information, should you decide to proceed. Moreover, the lender you go with will need to perform their own checks before you are fully approved.
Nevertheless, Credible explains that in many cases, Lenders are able to release the funds the very next working day.
The credit card section of the Credible platform is a useful way to find a card that best suits your needs. When you first get started, you have a range of options to pick, such as cards that are best for rewards, balance transfers, students, low interest, or travel.
After you’ve chosen your preferred card type, you can then play around with the filters. For example, are you looking for a credit card that is suitable for those with poor credit, or are you looking for a welcome offer? Whatever you are looking for, Credible makes it really easy to find it.
Much like in the case of the personal loan application process, once you’ve found the card that you want to apply for, you enter your details via the Credible website.
As a cautionary measure, if you’re looking to apply for a private student loan, you should always look to maximize federal student loans first. In most cases, the terms offered via federal loans are much more competitive than that of a private lender, so do bear this in mind.
Nevertheless, if you are looking for a competitively priced private lender, you can use Credible to find the best rates. The platform has partnered with a number of leading private student loan lenders, including that of Citizens Bank and iHelp. As is to be expected, the eligibility requirements are slightly lower in comparison to applying for a personal loan.
Credible will expect you to have a credit score of at least 600. If this isn’t possible, or you don’t have a sufficient history of obtaining and repaying credit, then it’s likely that you will need to get a co-signer. In fact, Credible themselves state that you are three times more likely to be accepted if you use a co-signer as part of your application.
Credible allow co-signers to be a parent, spouse, relative, or any U.S. citizen over the age of 18. Don’t forget, your co-signer will be responsible for paying your loan if you are unable to meet your payments!
Student Loan Fees and Terms
In terms of the rates on offer, this starts at a variable rate of 3.89%, and a fixed ARP of 4.50%. Make sure you understand the difference between the two, as long-term, this could make a significant difference as to how much you eventually end up paying back.
Essentially, while the variable rate might be cheaper when you initially take out the loan, over the course of the loan, the rate might end up costing you more.
Student loans come with no origination or service fees, which keeps the platform true to its word that it charges no fees. Moreover, any student loans that you obtain via the Credible platform come with no early payment penalties, which is an extra bonus.
Loan terms offered will typically range between five and 15 years. More than 2,220 academic institutions are eligible to obtain a student loan via Credible, and both Undergraduate and Graduate degrees are supported.
Finally, if you do decide to apply for a private student loan through Credible and your application is accepted, you will then need to upload some documents. As soon as the documents have been validated, the funds will be forwarded straight on to your academic institution.
Student Refinancing Loans
On top of covering personal loans and student loans, Credible also offers a platform to compare student refinancing loan providers.
For those unaware, the purpose of obtaining a student refinancing loan is to pay off your current outstanding student loans (both private and federal) in one swoop. The loans you pay off are then replaced by your newly obtained student refinancing loan.
The idea behind this is to obtain a more favorable interest rate, and in some cases, more favorable repayment terms. Much like in the case of the student loan process at Credible, you also have the option of choosing a variable rate or fixed APR.
If you’re looking to replace your existing mortgage agreement with a better deal, then you might want to consider getting a refinancing quote through Credible.
Once again, checking what rates you can get via Credible will not affect your credit score, not will your current lender be able to see that you applied. The prequalification stage takes just 3 minutes, with Credible claiming that unlike other sites, their prequalified rates are highly accurate.
If you do decide to go with one of the mortgage refinancing deals that you are offered, you can actually complete the entire end-to-end process via the Credible platform. This includes ongoing support as and when you need it, which is great.
In terms of the fundamentals, the amount of refinancing you will be able to get will depend on a number of factors. For example, if you have a debt-to-income ratio between 45% and 50%, alongside a strong credit score, you might be able to get approved for an amount equal to 97% of your property’s market value.
The specific circumstances will also be determined by the criteria employed by the lenders. As such, it’s well worth taking a look to see what you are offered, as the search will not be posted to your credit report.
Credible Customer Service and Reviews
If you need to contact Credible directly, you have a number of options at your disposal. The easiest way is to contact a support member via the platform’s live chat facility.
The live chat box isn’t available 24/7, as when we tested it out ourselves outside of standard office hours, we were asked to send an email. You can also contact the team on their main hotline, which can be reached at 866-540-6005.
Finally, you can also send an email at email@example.com.
In terms of the platform’s reputation in the public domain, the vast majority of our findings were positive. For example, TrustPilot – which is often a good indicator of public perception, currently lists Credible with a score of 9.5/10, which is across more than 2,402 reviews.
Credible Review: The Verdict?
In summary, Credible is a really useful tool that can be used to find some of the best financing deals in the market. Whether you’re looking for a conventional personal loan, a specific type of credit card, a student loan refinancing plan, or mortgage refinancing – the Credible platform has you covered.
Credible does not charge you any fees for receiving quotes, nor does it cost you anything if you decide to obtain one of the deals they present to you. However, the overarching benefit of using Credible is that pre-qualification applications never affect your credit score, nor are they shared with any credit bureau. As such, you effectively have nothing to lose by at least seeing what rates you can get.
We also like the fact that the team at Credible have made the platform really simple to use, and as they say themselves, free of any jargon. This is especially useful for those looking to take out a student loan, who otherwise, might not have a full grasp of complex legal terms.
On the other hand, it is important to note that Credible does not have a relationship with all of the best lenders out there. This means that by using the platform, you might be missing out on a slightly better deal. However, this is often the case with financing comparison platforms, as certain lenders will always be missing.
All in all, if you’re currently in the market for one of the lending products covered by Credible, there is no harm in finding out whether or not they have a deal for you.