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First Commonwealth Bank, which has two locations in Columbus, Ohio, can be a good option for fixed- or variable-rate personal loans if you’re looking to borrow a larger sum or you’re primarily concerned about lower starting APRs or fees.
APRs from the bank start below those offered by Bridge Credit Union — and well below those from OneMain Financial. (It is important to note that the low starting APR for First Commonwealth Bank is for its variable-rate offering; plus, we don’t know the maximums APRs.) The upfront borrowing cost is low, too, with a $54 processing fee. And while other lenders with Columbus locations may cap your loan amount at $25,000 or less, First Commonwealth Bank allows you to borrow up to $35,000.
Existing First Commonwealth Bank customers can get an interest rate discount on fixed loans by setting up automatic payments from a checking account held at the bank.
Borrowers in five states — Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Pennsylvania and West Virginia — can apply for a personal loan with First Commonwealth Bank. The application process, which can be completed online or at a local branch in Columbus, involves providing details about your finances. You’ll need to include, among other things:
OneMain Financial is a good option for borrowers who may not be able to qualify for loans with lenders that have more stringent qualifying requirements. However, their APR is higher than many competitors, so you should consider less costly loans if you have strong financial credentials.
While the maximum loan amount is lower than First Commonwealth Bank, OneMain Financial provides fast access to funds. If you’re approved for a fixed-rate personal loan in Columbus, you could get your money as soon as the day you’re approved.
The lender, which doesn’t charge prepayment penalties, has three branches in Columbus.
You can apply with OneMain Financial at a local Columbus branch or online. If you complete an application online, you’ll need to head to a branch to talk to one of the lender’s loan specialists. They’ll verify your information and work with you to determine your loan options.
You can prequalify for a loan with OneMain Financial without affecting your credit score. Its application requires some basic information, including:
Bridge Credit Union offers lower starting APRs than some competitors, such as OneMain Financial, but we don’t know its high end. It also charges a flat-rate documentation preparation fee rather than a percentage-based fee for the loan.
While you have to be a Bridge Credit Union member to qualify, membership is open to:
Bridge Credit Union, which is headquartered in Columbus, has nearly 350 available branches statewide through the Co-Op Network.
If you’re interested in a personal loan from Bridge Credit Union, you can visit a local branch or apply online. If you’re already a credit union member, you can sign in with your username and password to streamline the process. If you aren’t yet a member, you would start by selecting the type of loan you want and continue with the rest of the application.
Be prepared with the following, among other things:
Just because you’re looking for personal loans in Columbus doesn’t mean you can borrow only from local lenders. You can shop for personal loans online by following a few easy steps.
Most lenders consider certain basic financial criteria to determine if you can qualify for a personal loan — this includes your credit score, which you can check for free through LendingTree.
Lenders also want to make sure you have stable employment and enough income to pay back what you’re borrowing. Proof of employment and income, such as pay stubs and tax returns, are often required.
You may be matched with up to five lenders in LendingTree’s network based on your creditworthiness. Personal loan lenders charge different APRs and offer different terms, so it’s always a good idea to comparison shop and get several quotes.
You should look for lenders that allow you to prequalify while performing a soft credit inquiry. Soft credit checks don’t show up as inquiries on your credit report. Other lenders require a hard credit check, but too many in a short period can hurt your credit score, so aim to keep your rate-shopping in a 14-day window.
When shopping for a loan, it’s important to look at the big picture. Your APR and loan term determine what your financing will cost, but they aren’t the only factors.
Some lenders have a shorter time to fund your loan than others, while some allow for your loan to be funded via direct deposit or check. If you need money right away, you may want to opt for a lender providing faster access to cash.
You’ll also want to consider customer service and other features of the loan. By looking at the big picture, you can decide which lender is offering your overall best deal.
Some of the key factors to look for when comparing lenders include:
When you’re considering applying for a personal loan in Columbus, Ohio, you want to understand both the monthly payments you’ll owe and the total loan cost. You can use our personal loan payment calculator to see what your loan would cost and check how your balance will change over time as you work to pay down your debt.
To select personal loan lenders for this roundup, we used Google Maps to search for “personal loan lenders” with local branches in Columbus, Ohio. We then researched the first 45 unique lenders that appeared in our results, 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 didn’t offer information on at least three of the five factors listed above weren’t considered.