- Competitive rates and fees. Credit type ~600-700.
- Loans issued by WebBank
- Based in Chicago, IL. Since 2012.
|$2,000 - $35,000||Loan Amount|
|9.95% - 35.99%||APR Range|
|Apply by Phone|
|Online Account Access|
|State licensed lender|
|Addresses BBB Complaints|
Avant entered the personal loan space in 2012. The team, including some of its investors, have deep experience in credit and lending to consumers.
Product and Application
Avant makes personal loans to individuals with a wide variety of credit profiles. Most of their customers that receive loans have a credit score of 600 to 700. The application process generally takes less than 15 minutes and funding can happen as soon as the next business day. Checking your loan eligibility will not impact your credit score. At this stage, they only do a soft inquiry to check rates and terms. However, if you choose to continue past this point a hard inquiry will be made. A hard inquiry may impact your credit score and will be visible to third parties reviewing your credit history. Avant deposits cash directly into your checking account via ACH.
Rates and terms will vary based on your application and will depend on your financial situation. Some of the factors Avant considers include credit history, employment history, and loan repayment history. They may charge an Administration Fee, which is defined on their website as an upfront fee automatically deducted from your loan proceeds at the time the loan is funded. The fee is non-refundable and, if applied, is only assessed if your loan is issued. The fee typically varies between 0% and 4.75% of your loan amount. This is consistent with other personal loan providers. Late fees may apply if a scheduled payment is missed, although the amount and time of the application of the late fee will vary by state. Dishonored payment fees may apply if a scheduled payment is returned unpaid. APR will vary by state and applicant
As an example, a $5,700 loan with an administration fee of 4.75% and an amount financed of $5,429.25, repayable in 36 monthly installments, would have an APR of 29.95% and monthly payments of $230.33..
Avant reports to the three major credit bureaus. Reporting to the bureaus is great. This means that responsible use of credit with Avant, i.e. paying your loan off and making on-time payments, may impact your credit score. It also means missing payments may impact your score. Avant is also one of the few online lenders who are accredited by the BBB. They received this accreditation in March 2015.
Avant is based in Chicago. The team started working together in 2012 and made their first loans in early 2013. By early 2014, according to Built in Chicago, they had made over 25,000 loans. The team includes the founders of CashNetUSA, a payday lending company. CashNetUSA was acquired by Cash America International in 2006 and continues to be one of the leading players in this space offering payday, installment, and title loans. Avant started off making short-term installment loans to underbanked and poor credit individuals. In recent years they have expanded and moved into longer-term personal loans targeted at the sub-prime to prime market. In 2019, they have over 500 employees, have funded over $1.8B in loans, and served over 600,000 consumers. We like Avant because they have experience servicing people with all credit types.
In April of 2019 the FTC found Avant had "engaged in deceptive and unfair loan servicing practices" and fined them $3.85 million for harming thousands of consumers. The issues were around how they serviced their loans after originating. “We have alleged that Avant gave the run-around to consumers trying to repay their loans, because of systemic issues with the company’s loan servicing platform,” said Andrew Smith Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “Online lenders need to understand that loan servicing is just as important to consumers as loan marketing and origination, and we will not hesitate to hold lenders liable for unfair or deceptive servicing practices.”
Avant has said they do not admit to the FTC allegations but settled to avoid a prolonged lawsuit so they can focus on running the business. The Payday Hound does not have any proprietary insight into these allegations.
Avant has raised close to $130 million in funding from August Capital, Victory Park Capital, and QED Investors. Most likely these funds are a mix of debt and equity. More specifically, some of these funds are designed to be used as loans versus used to build operations which would explain the relatively large amount of capital raised. QED Investors joined in their Series C round. QED Investors was founded by one of the founders of Capital One.
Avant is a solid choice for a personal loan. Their application process is clean and streamlined; rates are transparent and competitive; the team has strong credit experience, and they are state-licensed.