Portland, Oregon, is full of lending options when it comes to personal loans. But which one is right for you? For people with less-than-perfect credit, finding personal loans can be challenging. So to find the best financial fix, you need to know where to look. This article is full of information about personal loans and how to get one in Portland. If you’re ready to build a better financial future, read on!  

Portland, OR: The Basics 

Founded in 1851, Portland began as a frontier town of about 800 settlers. Today, the Portland metropolitan area is home to more than 2.5 million people, making it the largest city in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest’s second-largest city. Portland is regularly listed as one of the best American cities to live in. In addition to great public transportation and green space, Portland also has a vibrant music and arts scene. In recent decades, it had been the epicenter of a tech boom, adding “Silicon Forest” to its long list of nicknames (City of Roses, Stumptown, Bridge City, etc.).  

What Is a Personal Loan? 

A personal loan is a type of funding distributed in a lump sum, typically repaid in fixed monthly payments. Personal loans are also known as monthly installment loans. You make monthly payments until you pay off the balance. 

Personal Loan Costs 

Every personal loan has a different fee structure. But, if you are going to borrow a personal loan, there are a couple of common costs that appear in many loan agreements. 

Interest

As the main profit source for lenders, interest is the most basic cost associated with a loan. The annual percentage rate, or APR, for personal loans is a percentage of the funded amount charged over a year. A loan’s APR will either be a fixed rate over the life of the loan or a variable rate that rises or falls based on the current market. Lenders generally offer personal loans at fixed rates. With fixed-rate personal loans, your monthly payments are constant. That fact makes personal loans generally easy to manage and build into your budget. 

Origination Fees 

Origination fees cover all of the “paperwork” costs that come with your personal loan—printing and filing documents, bank processing fees, personnel, and other lending expenses. Depending on what personal loan you choose, you may or may not have to pay origination fees. While some lenders charge them, others will fold those costs into your monthly payment. 

Secured and Unsecured Loans

A loan can come in two forms; they can either be secured or unsecured. A secured loan requires collateral, while an unsecured loan doesn’t. Collateral is a valuable asset the borrower supplies to the lender to guarantee or “secure” the loan. Common pieces of collateral include homes, cars, or a savings account. Secured loans are usually less risky for the lender. This fact lowers the interest rates on secured loans. So, generally speaking, secured loans can cost less than unsecured loans.

An unsecured loan, on the other hand, has less risk to the borrower. Instead of risking a piece of collateral, a borrower’s creditworthiness determines approval for unsecured loans. Your creditworthiness speaks to your ability to borrow money and pay it back. 

A personal loan is an unsecured loan. While the terms and rates for unsecured loans terms and secured loans, unsecured loans are accessible to more people. Without a need for collateral, unsecured loans are more cost-effective for borrowers who either can’t afford to risk collateral or don’t have any.

Uses for a Personal Loan 

Personal loans are versatile. Unlike a mortgage or an auto loan, you can use a personal loan 

any way you want. Some of the more common reasons for a personal loan include: 

Consolidating Credit Card Debt 

Personal loans can consolidate debt—particularly the debt that results from not using a credit card wisely. Credit cards typically have high-interest rates. And when you couple that with late fees and penalties for being over your limit or late payments, your debt can rise fast. You can get a debt consolidation loan to cover the balance of your credit cards. Then, you’ll only have to make one monthly payment on your consolidation loan instead of trying to keep up with a bunch of credit card payments. 

Emergency Expenses

In life, it’s important to expect the unexpected. And even if you’ve built up an emergency fund, a personal loan can help make ends meet. Anything from an unplanned car repair, a physical accident, or home damage can throw your budget out of wack. A personal loan can stabilize your financial situation by covering your regular bills, new emergency expenses, or both. Either way, you can use a personal loan to handle your unexpected expenses while you recover. 

Moving Costs 

In today’s world, finding the right combination of affordable housing and available jobs has people crisscrossing the country and settling in new homes rapidly. If you have to pack up your life and make a big move, a personal loan can help you cover the costs. A loan can stop you from draining all your savings or emergency funds when you consider packing materials, truck rentals, and fuel. 

Fun Stuff  

Hey, we’ve all got bills to pay. But, that doesn’t mean that you have to spend years saving up money for your dream vacation or that gift for your spouse they’ve been dying for. Personal loans give people the opportunity to enjoy some of life’s little luxuries right now. 

Where To Get a Personal Loan

Personal loans are not just versatile; they are also now more accessible than ever. What lender you choose depends on your needs and your financial situation. Here’s where you can look for a personal loan that’s right for you. 

Banks 

Banks are some of the most reliable lenders around. With large assets, insured loans, and a big reputation, banks can provide low-cost personal loans for their customers. Banks can also set up automatic payments from your bank account to cover monthly payments. However, banks require lenders to either have a stellar credit rating or a minimum deposit into a bank account.  

Credit Union 

A credit union is a financial institution that works like a bank. Credit unions hold checking and savings accounts and also provide personal loans. On the whole, personal loans from credit unions have comparable (and in many cases, competitive) to bank loans. But to do business at a credit union, you must be a member. Membership in a credit union usually depends on a work affiliation or membership in a trade union (like steelworkers or nurses) 

Private Lenders 

Private lenders offer loans to people with bad credit, no credit, or previous bankruptcy. Since they work outside of the traditional banking system, they don’t have to adhere to the same regulations as banks and credit unions. This gives them more freedom to work with borrowers who might not fit into the mainstream lending world. 

While you can apply online with a private lender, most banks and credit unions still require a branch visit. You’ll have to schedule an appointment, fill out paperwork, and leave your application to a loan officer. Then the loan approval can take days or even weeks, compared to the average business day it takes for a decision from a private lender. Many private lenders are usually willing to work with anyone with a job, a steady income, and an active checking account. 

Personal Loans and Your Credit 

No matter what type of loan you choose, your credit will play a role. Some lenders rely more heavily on some aspects of your credit than others. The information that they need will come from your credit report. 

Your credit report is the story of your relationship with your debt. When you apply for personal loans or other lines of credit, lenders access your credit report to decide on lending to you. Your credit report provides information about your financial behavior across five categories:

Payment History 

When you make a late payment on a line of credit or miss a payment on a utility bill, that information goes on your credit report. Your payment history is the most impactful aspect of your credit report. Because your history shows how often you’ve missed payments, it gives lenders the most insight into how likely you are to honor your loan agreement. Paying your bills on time will keep your payment history strong. Even with a low credit score, good payment history can make the difference in a loan approval. 

Credit Utilization 

Suppose you have a credit card with a limit of $2,00I 0. At the end of the month, you have a balance of $500. Since a quarter of your personal line of credit is in use, your credit utilization ratio is 25%. Credit utilization has the second-biggest effect on your credit score. Utilization shows lenders how much debt you tend to carry. Keeping your credit utilization low—below 30%—benefits your credit score. Plus, keeping the majority of your credit available is a good financial habit to build. 

Credit Age

Credit age, or credit history, is the amount of time you have had an active credit account. Having a long credit history can speak to your experience with managing debt. To keep your credit age accurate, try to keep your oldest credit card open even if you pay it off. 

New Credit 

New credit records the number of hard inquiries into your credit. Hard inquiries are reviews that lenders make into your credit report to determine loan approval. Multiple hard inquiries over a short period could signify that you are struggling financially, and a lender may decide that you are too much of a risk. When you apply for a personal loan, you should not apply for any other line of credit or loans at the same time. 

Credit Mix 

A credit mix is the variety of credit accounts you manage. A mortgage, car loan, and student loan are a solid credit mix because they are each paid down differently. If you can manage multiple loans well, the chances are high that you will continue to do well with another loan. 

Credit Score

Credit bureaus calculate credit scores from the information in your credit report. Credit scores are three-digit numbers ranging from 300 to 850: 

300-579: Poor/Bad 

580-669: Fair

670-739: Good

740-799: Very good

800-850: Excellent

America has three major credit bureaus: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. Each bureau creates credit reports and calculates a credit score, so your credit scores will differ. 

CreditNinja Has Personal Loans in Portland for You

Are you searching for personal loans in Portland? CreditNinja has your financial solution! Every CreditNinja loan experience includes: 

Fast Application Process   

Who’s got the time to stand around waiting for a “maybe” on a personal loan? CreditNinja’s application is lightning fast; most loans take just a day process. For every approved loan, we directly deposit your funds to the account of your choice. 

No Pre-Payment Penalties 

Some lenders will charge you a percentage of your loan amount if you repay it before the end of your loan terms. At CreditNinja, we don’t have any pre-payment penalties attached to our loans. We give personal loans to people who what to get out of debt. So we don’t punish you when you learn how to be better with your money. 

Excellent Customer Service 

Even with the smallest personal loan, you’re going to have some questions. And our Customer Care Team has the answers. From your first monthly payment to your last, we’re here to help.

Loans Designed With You in Mind 

In Portland, you don’t have to be in a credit union, work with a bank, or fall into a debt trap to get a good personal loan. If you’re ready to see how CreditNinja can help you, apply online today, or feel free to call us for more information. 

What our borrowers are saying

¹Not all loan requests are approved. Approval and loan terms vary based on credit determination and state law. Applications approved before 10:30 a.m. CT Monday – Friday are generally funded the same business day. Applications approved after this time are generally funded the next business day. Some applications may require additional verification, in which case, the loan if approved, will be funded the business day after such additional verification is completed.