Personal Loans in Baltimore, Maryland
|MECU Credit Union||OneMain Financial||Wells Fargo Bank|
|APR||As low as 9.49%||18.00% to 35.99%||5.74% to 24.49%|
|Borrowing limits||Up to $30,000||$1,500 to $20,000||$3,000 to $100,000|
|Terms||Up to 60 months||24 to 60 months||12 to 84 months|
|Origination fee||None||Varies by state, but between 1.00% - 10.00% of your loan amount, or $300||None|
|Minimum credit requirement||Not specified||Not specified||Not specified|
MECU Credit Union
One option for personal loans in Baltimore is MECU Credit Union, a Maryland-based credit union. Because it’s a credit union, you would have to be a member to access MECU Credit Union’s banking and lending services. That’s a potential barrier to borrowing that you won’t find from the other lenders on this list, which could be a deterrent.
Although the minimum APR offered by MECU Credit Union personal loans is higher than with Wells Fargo, you won’t need to worry about an origination fee. The minimum APR is also lower than the one offered by OneMain Financial.
According to the credit union, it takes about three to five minutes to complete the application, though it’s unclear how long it takes to be approved or receive funds.
How to qualify
The exact requirements for this loan are unclear, but it’s worth noting that MECU Credit Union uses risk-based pricing, which factors in your credit report, to determine your APR. You would also have to be a member of the credit union in order to to access this personal loan. Here are the requirements for membership:
- Live, work, worship or attend school in the Baltimore area or have ties to the credit union through your work or family.
- Alternatively: Make a one-time donation to MECU Credit Union’s nonprofit partner, American Consumer Council, and live in Maryland, Delaware, Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania or Virginia.
When applying, you have to provide your Social Security number, information about existing loans and, if you’re applying for a joint loan, your secondary’s application information.
National lender OneMain Financial is the only lender on this list that charges an origination fee, taken out of the total loan amount, which also increases the total cost of borrowing. Additionally, it has the lowest maximum borrowing amount of the personal loans listed, which may not make it suitable for those looking for a more substantial loan. On the other hand, it also has the lowest minimum borrowing requirement, which can help those who don’t need a larger loan to prevent overborrowing.
OneMain Financial also gives borrowers the option to get a secured or unsecured personal loan through its application process. This may make it a better option for those who aren’t sure if they can qualify for a personal loan without putting up collateral. Those who do qualify for a loan through OneMain Financial would be able to receive their funds either via direct deposit or by visiting their local branch.
On average, it takes applicants less than 10 minutes to complete their application and receive a decision. If approved, you could receive the funds as soon as the same day if you opt for the check option, or in one to two business days if you opt for direct deposit.
How to qualify
OneMain Financial doesn’t go into detail about what exactly is required to secure one of their personal loans. But to qualify, you will need to provide the following documents:
- Proof of income
- Proof of residence
- A government-issued ID
Your loan terms would be determined by factors like your credit history, income, expenses and debts, as well as the intended purpose of your loan and your state of residence. If approved, you would have to visit a physical bank branch to verify your information and discuss your options. However, it’s important to be aware that OneMain Financial only has one branch located within Baltimore’s city limits.
Wells Fargo Bank
Those who qualify for a personal loan from Wells Fargo, the multinational financial services company, may get funding in as little as one business day after loan approval. Interest rates are fixed for these loans. Wells Fargo Bank also accepts co-applicants on their personal loans, which can make it easier to qualify. Like MECU Credit Union, there are no origination or prepayment fees associated with borrowing from Wells Fargo Bank.
These personal loans also provide the lowest minimum APR of the Baltimore lenders on this list. Additionally, there is a possibility of scoring an even lower interest rate than you might otherwise get if you already have a qualifying consumer checking account with Wells Fargo and make automatic payments from one of the bank’s deposit accounts. According to the lender’s site, about 15% of approved applicants qualify for the lowest available APR.
Wells Fargo Bank’s borrowing limit is also the highest of these three lenders, which could prove helpful to those who are in need of funds greater than $30,000.
How to qualify
The specific qualification requirements for a Wells Fargo Bank personal loan, like minimum credit score or debt-to-income ratio, are unfortunately not publicly available. But you will have to provide the following information to apply for a personal loan:
- Personal and contact information
- Employment details
- Income information
- Desired term and borrowing amount
If you don’t have an existing Wells Fargo Bank account, you will only be able to apply by going into one of the bank’s 14 Baltimore branches and submitting your application there. The APR of the loan would be based on factors like your credit history, loan amount and income verification.
Explore lenders with LendingTree
As with any financial product, it’s vital to shop around to make sure that you get your best rates and terms. That way, you’ll minimize the cost for your loan and help set yourself — and your finances — up for success.
ourFor those who are interested in seeing more options, you can use LendingTree to figure out which other Baltimore lenders may be a viable option and where you can prequalify. Just keep in mind that prequalification is not guaranteed and depends on your credit health.
Requirements for personal loans in Baltimore
Neither the city of Baltimore nor the state of Maryland have specific personal loan requirements that would impact your borrowing experience. That means lenders in Baltimore must abide by federal regulations around consumer lending, including providing you with the cost of borrowing and disclosing the terms. Per the FDIC, lenders also cannot use “abusive, unfair or deceptive” practices to collect money from borrowers.
How to choose a personal loan in Baltimore
Getting a personal loan is a big decision. You’ll need to weigh the terms of each lender to figure out which one may be the best option for your unique financial situation.
For example, someone with excellent credit and a high, stable income may want to take out a personal loan to fund renovations for their Mount Vernon home. In that case, they’d likely want to look for a loan option with few or no fees. They may also want a shorter repayment period to minimize interest charges. On the other hand, a traveling nurse who needs money to replace a car transmission might give quick funding more weight in their considerations.
Regardless of what you need a loan for, there are a couple steps you can take before applying to help make an informed decision.
Make sure you can afford your payments
You’ll want to make sure that you can afford your payments, in addition to your regular financial obligations, and that you’re satisfied with the total costs, before moving forward. Our personal loan calculator is a good resource for estimating your monthly payments and total repayment costs to help you determine if taking out the loan is financially feasible for you.
Another useful tool to shop around for your best-cost option is prequalification, which some Baltimore lenders provide. With prequalification, you can see if you’d be likely to qualify for a personal loan from a particular lender, and if so, what your potential terms would be. Plus, you wouldn’t have to worry about getting dinged on your credit score, as prequalification only results in a soft inquiry.
How to find personal loans for bad credit in Baltimore
If you have bad credit, you may wish to try alternative methods to secure funding if you live in Baltimore. For example, there are institutions like Baltimore Community Lending and the Hebrew Free Loan Association that can provide financial assistance and flexible loan options.
Or, if you are confident in your ability to repay the loan, you may wish to consider a secured loan. However, those can be risky since they could lead to loss of your collateral if, for example, you start missing payments.
Other banks as well as online lenders may be worth looking into to expand your lender options. However, in general, borrowers with bad credit will face steeper costs of borrowing than those with strong credit. So you’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of such loans, shop around for terms you’re comfortable with and make sure that you can comfortably repay the loan before signing on the dotted line.
Personal loans in Baltimore: FAQ
Where can I find a payday loan in Baltimore?
Those interested in acquiring a payday loan in Baltimore can find places like check-cashing companies and cash-advance lenders in Baltimore that offer payday loans located throughout the city. However, borrowers should use caution when considering these kinds of loans since they can be extremely expensive — with rates reaching triple digits — and can potentially drag you into a debt cycle.
How can I find a list of banks in Baltimore?
You can always do a quick Google search for banks near you, but the most comprehensive list will be found via the FDIC’s BankFind feature. It will give you information about each bank’s FDIC status (active or inactive), and guide you to each bank’s list of locations.
How can I find a list of credit unions in Baltimore?
The NCUA’s Credit Union Locator is a great resource. It can provide you with a map of the credit unions in Baltimore, and it has icons next to each entry to let you know which ones have features like ATMs, a drive-thru or member services.
To select personal loan lenders for this roundup, we used Google Maps to search for “personal loan lenders” with local branches in Baltimore. We then researched the first 20 unique lenders that appeared in our results on March 3, 2020, and selected three lenders to feature based on 1) lowest minimum APR, 2) lowest maximum APR, 3) lowest origination fee, 4) widest range of borrowing limits and 5) widest range of term length. Lenders that did not offer information on at least three of the five factors listed above were not considered.