- Offers loans and lines of credit
- Loans issued by Blue Ridge Bank and Cross River Bank
- Credit and income profile considered in decision
eligible credit type ⓘ
Visit Upgrade for product eligibility.
Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:
|Credit Type||FICO® Score|
|$1,000 to $35,000||Loan Amount|
|Apply by Phone|
|Online Account Access|
|State licensed lender|
|Answers BBB Complaints|
Upgrade offers personal loans, lines of credit, and auto/title loans. They also offer credit monitoring. Upgrade considers your credit and income profiles when deciding on your loan.
Products and Terms
Personal loans offered through Upgrade are installment loans that range from $1,000 to $35,000. They have annual percentage rates (APRs) from 7.99%-35.97% and are offered at fixed terms of either 36 or 60 months. The lowest rates require autopay or paying off existing debt directly. All of their personal loans have a 2.9% to 8% origination fee which is deducted from the loan proceeds. For example, if you receive a $10,000 loan with a 36-month term and a 17.98% APR (which includes a 14.32% yearly interest rate and a 5% one-time origination fee), you would receive $9,500 in your account and would have a required monthly payment of $343.33. Over the life of the loan, your payments would total $12,359.97.
Your actual APR on your loan may be higher or lower than what is stated here and your loan offers may not have multiple term lengths available. The actual rate depends on credit score, credit usage history, loan term, and other factors. Late payments or subsequent charges and fees may also increase the cost of your fixed-rate loan. There is no fee or penalty for repaying a loan early. In some cases, they may offer the option of a secured personal loan to help you qualify for a loan, or to provide you a lower rate. You can check your eligibility and rates on their site without impacting your credit score.
Upgrade also offers a card with a personal credit line that is accessible via a Visa card or by having funds transferred to your bank account. These lines are from $500 to $50,000. Your rate and terms are fixed. This Visa card can be used online or at retailers that accept Visa. Line amounts may vary, depending on your state of residence and your individual credit profile.
For personal loans, funds are sent within one business day, but availability is dependent on how quickly your bank processes the transaction. Upgrade states, "from the time of approval, funds should be available within four business days." For the Upgrade Card, the card is sent in the mail but you can immediately access your fund via a virtual card. Funds sent to your bank account will be available in four days, similar to their personal loan.
To be eligible for a loan through Upgrade, you must be
- a U.S. citizen, U.S. permanent resident, or living in the U.S. on a valid visa,
- at least 18 years old (19 years old in Alabama and certain states),
- able to provide a verifiable bank account and
- able to provide a valid email address.
The company's website does not state a minimum credit score or income requirements. It also does not mention which states they operate in.
Self Employed Individuals are Eligible
Self-employed individuals are eligible for loans from Upgrade. They require two most recent years of tax returns and do not accept tax return extensions (i.e. the definition of "most recent" tax return doesn't adjust to the October tax-filing extension date). The returns must also already be on file with the IRS so they can verify receipt of taxes. They also have some income adjustments when calculating income. It is best to check out Upgrade's help center on their website for the latest information and requirements. The self-employed process may add 3-5 business days to your application time because of the IRS check.
Who is Upgrade
Upgrade was founded in 2016 and is based in San Francisco with operations in Phoenix and engineering in Montreal. The company was founded by Renaud Laplanche, the co-founder of Lending Club (a peer to peer lender). As of August 2018, the company had 300 employees, over 100,000 customers, and originated over $1B in loans. The company has raised $162M over three rounds.
Upgrade is not a bank. Instead, Upgrade partners with banks to provide loans originated through Upgrade. Blue Ridge Bank, Member FDIC, provides the personal loans obtained through Upgrade. Cross River Bank, a New Jersey State Chartered Commercial Bank, Member FDIC is the lender for the personal credit lines offered. Sutton Bank, Member FDIC, issues the Upgrade Card which allows you to access the personal credit line. Partnering with banks is a common practice and requires the originators like Upgrade to be in compliance with bank, state, and federal regulations. Possible downsides are the originator does not always have full control of their underwriting and they function as a middle person. This means they may have more strict lending requirements and higher costs than a direct lender.