If you need to borrow money for an automobile, home remodeling project, medical bills, or debt consolidation, consider checking out out LightStream. This online lender operates as the virtual division of SunTrust Bank, one of the nation’s leading financial services companies.
When you bank with LightStream and have good or excellent credit, you can potentially qualify for very low interest rates. LightStream loan limits tend to be flexible, and repayment periods of up to 144 months (12 years) are offered. While the amount you can borrow will vary depending on your personal finances, your credit score, and the purpose of your loan, loans are offered in amounts up to $100,000.
Keep reading to learn more about how LightStream personal loans work, loan requirements, and who this company is good for.
LightStream Loans: Key Takeaways
- Fixed interest rates between 3.09% and 15.74% (with auto-pay)
- Loan rate guarantee
- Loan amounts between $5,000 and $100,000
- Repayment terms between 24 and 144 months
- Apply online and get approved for a loan in minutes
- No origination fee, late fees, or prepayment fees
How We Rate LightStream Loans
At Money360, we aim to provide a general overview of a lender’s products and services through a standard rating process. After a thorough research and discovery period, here’s how LightStream loans stacks up:
|LightStream Personal Loans at a Glance|
|Affordability (interest rates, fees, and terms)||🌕🌕🌕🌕🌕|
|Availability (credit requirements, geographic reach)||🌕🌕🌕🌕🌕|
|Ease of Use||🌕🌕🌕🌕🌕|
LightStream Offers Competitive Rates and Flexible Loan Terms
While LightStream focuses most of its efforts on personal loans, the online bank offers financial products that work for a variety of purposes. They also offer personalized interest rate options that vary widely depending on the purpose of your loan. If you aim to borrow money for a secured asset like a car or a boat, for example, you may qualify for an interest rate as low as 3.09% with auto-pay. If you plan to borrow for debt consolidation, on the other hand, your interest rate will likely surge slightly higher, starting at around 5.89% with auto-pay and excellent credit.
Either way, LightStream extends it best rates and loan terms to individuals with good or excellent credit — or a FICO score of 740 or higher. They even offer a loan rate guarantee that promises to beat any qualifying APR from any other lender. Further, LightStream offers a $100 “Loan Experience Guarantee” that provides you with $100 in cash if you borrow money and walk away from your loan experience dissatisfied.
While you can take out a personal loan for any reason — or no reason at all — LightStream markets its loans for the following purposes:
- Debt consolidation
- Swimming pool
- Medical bills
- Home remodeling projects
- Dental care
- Solar panels
- Land purchase
- Tiny homes
- And more…
The best part about using LightStream when you borrow money is the company’s lack of fees. LightStream loans come without an origination fee, late fees, or a prepayment penalty. And LightStream isn’t some fly-by-night startup, either — it’s owned by SunTrust, which was ranked No. 1 in the nation in J.D. Power’s 2018 Home Equity Line Customer Satisfaction Survey.
LightStream Loans: Potential Downsides
One of the downsides of using LightStream is the fact that the best interest rates and terms only go to those with good or excellent credit. If your credit score is lacking, it’s possible you’ll qualify for interest rates on the higher end — if you qualify at all. Generally speaking, LightStream loans are available to consumers with FICO scores of 660 or higher. If you’re unsure about your credit score, it might be worth getting a free copy of your credit score before you apply.
You’ll also need several years of credit history to qualify, along with sufficient income and proof of employment. According to LightStream, they also require:
- A credit history with a variety of account types such as major credit cards, installment debt, and mortgage debt if applicable.
- A good payment history with few, if any, delinquencies.
- Proof you can save money; for example, liquid assets, cash down payments on real estate, retirement savings, and manageable revolving credit card debt.
Also note that the rates LightStream publishes include a 0.50% discount for auto-pay. If you don’t want to set your account up to be paid automatically for any reason, you can expect to pay half a percentage point more than the rate you qualify for.
LightStream Is Best For:
- Anyone with great credit, a solid income, and a lengthy credit history
- People who want to apply for a loan online
- Anyone who wants the flexibility that comes with choosing their own loan amount and repayment term
How to Apply for a LightStream Personal Loan
If you’re ready to borrow money and believe you have the credit score, income, and credit history to qualify, applying for a LightStream loan is a piece of cake. Once you’re ready to submit an application, head to the website and hit the “apply now” button. From there, you’ll enter important personal information such as:
- The purpose of the loan
- Desired loan amount and repayment term
- Full name
- Social Security number
- Income and employment information
You can apply for a personal loan with LightStream on your own or with a co-borrower. However, please note that applying will result in a hard pull on your credit report. At this time, LightStream does not offer the option to get preapproved for a loan with a soft pull. If you do get approved for a loan online and complete all steps on your application before 2:30 p.m. EST, you can even get your money the same day you apply.
LightStream Review: The Bottom Line
As we already mentioned, LightStream offers affordable loans up to $100,000 and repayment terms that last up to 144 months. For that reason, they could be a solid option for anyone who needs to borrow money for any purpose.
However, their best rates and loans terms go to those with good or excellent credit and a credit history that’s at least a few years long. For that reason, you may be off with a different lender if you have mediocre credit or a thin credit profile.
But, you may never know unless you check around and learn about the different types of loans that may be available to you. That’s why we suggest taking time to read reviews and compare interest rates and loan terms from several lenders before you apply.
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