Understanding Bad Credit Loans

If you need money for an emergency or other important purpose, less than ideal credit won't necessarily keep you from getting the loan you need. At LendUp, we routinely approve loans for people with bad credit and no credit. We try to improve the financial picture of those who choose to work with us by offering expanded credit access and lowering the cost of borrowing over time. LendUp also offers free credit education.

Climbing the Ladder

We strive to provide a path for customers in eligible states to move up and earn access to apply for more money at a lower cost. See The LendUp Ladder for details.

Understanding bad credit vs. good credit

Some behaviors, like late payments and defaults, may impact your credit score more than others. To better understand bad credit, it's useful to understand how different factors are weighed when a credit score is calculated. FICO breaks it down for you. Typically, five primary categories go into a credit score calculation, generally prioritized as:

  • Payment history - 35 percent
  • Amounts owed - 30 percent
  • Length of credit history - 15 percent
  • Credit mix - 10 percent
  • New credit - 10 percent

About bad credit loans

Individual circumstances may impact the mix to a degree. However, it's clear that your payment history typically impacts your credit score more than the length of your credit history. As you can see, approximately two-thirds of the score is based on how much is owed and how timely payments are. So, if you owe a lot relative to your available credit, this could contribute to a lower credit score. Or, if numerous payments have occurred 30, 60 or 90 days late, this too can lower your credit score.

The most common credit score algorithm is the one from FICO. Most credit scores range from 300 to 850. Although standards vary, one financial website categorizes credit scores like this:

  • Poor - 300 to 629
  • Fair - 630 to 689
  • Good - 690 to 719
  • Excellent - 720 and up

These are simply guidelines. Keep in mind that each lender defines good credit and bad credit differently.

Late payments and bad credit

Although the average FICO score of 695 indicates that many people succeed in paying their bills on time, it's not uncommon for some consumers to struggle on occasion. According to the most recent FICO data, 18.2 percent of the population had at least one serious delinquency (a payment at least 90 days late) during the previous two years. If you have had payment problems, you are not alone; almost one in five people has.

Although late payments are often associated with problem credit, some lenders make a real effort to look at individual circumstances. Some lenders might ask why exactly a prospective borrower fell behind in the past and if their circumstances have changed. For example, a recent pay increase or lower expenses may be positives, even if someone has credit issues.

What else you need to know

So, if this all sounds interesting, you may have some other questions.

How much money can I apply for at LendUp?

Due to differing state regulations, the answer to this question varies. However, we strive to get our customers the money they need for emergencies and other special instances while keeping the amounts within their means.

How soon can I receive the funds if I'm approved?

LendUp Loans fund fast — as long as your application is submitted before before 5 p.m. PT (weekdays), you’ll typically have money in your bank account by the next business day. See our FAQ for details.

How likely is it that I'll be approved?

There is no way to predict the likelihood of approval, but we do assist by not using a traditional credit check during the application process.

Applying for loans for poor credit

Applying for a LendUp loan is quick, simple and straightforward; apply from your smartphone or computer in just five minutes. Get an instant decision 24/7. The process is the same whether you have bad credit, good credit or you're somewhere in between. You must:

  • Be a resident in one of the states where we're licensed
  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have a recurring income source
  • Have a checking account that can accept electronic transfers
  • Not be active military or a military dependent

When you apply for a LendUp loan, please have the following information available:

  • Current contact information
  • Active phone number
  • Active email account
  • Bank account information

LendUp is a licensed lender that may approve online loans for people with bad credit and no credit, but we do far more. Credit education courses empower our customers to better understand their credit scores as they work to improve them. We specialize in short-term loans, and good credit is not required. Apply today!

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