Avant Personal Loans Review

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Contributor, Benzinga
May 13, 2022

Established in 2012, Chicago-based Avant helps people obtain personal loans while offering transparent credit. Since its inception, Avant has helped over 1.5 million people receive funding. 

One thing that makes Avant so unique is its background as a financial technology company instead of a traditional bank. Banking needs are addressed by Evolve Bank & Trust, a member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC). The FDIC insures deposits and protects consumers in case of bank disasters. Benzinga’s review of Avant determined it is a strong option for personal loans because of its reputation for positive customer experiences and fast funding options. 

Best For
  • People with below-average credit scores who need unsecured personal loans
  • People who need fast funding
Pros
  • Quick funding
  • Fixed payments
  • Mobile accessibility
Cons
  • Additional costs such as origination fees
  • No third-party guarantor such as a co-signer on a secured personal loan

Avant Personal Loans Ratings at a Glance

Avant Fees
Avant Customer Service
Avant Terms and Loan Purpose
Avant Approval Requirements
Overall

Avant Fees

Origination feeUp to 4.75% 
Late fee$25 
Prepayment feeNone 
Dishonored fee$15 

Avant charges origination fees, also called administration fees because they cover the administrative processes for the loan. Avant charges origination fees up to 4.75%.

If you don’t pay promptly, Avant charges a $25 late fee that is applied after a grace period of 10 days past the due date. Avant also charges a $15 dishonored payment fees if your payment is returned for insufficient funds.

Avant does not charge prepayment fees, which motivates borrowers to repay their loans faster. 

Avant Customer Service

Avant’s customer service is relatively responsive and available by phone or via email and representatives can answer customers’ questions and address their specific needs.

The website provides specific contact information for unsecured personal loans, credit cards and banking. 

Avant also sends automated text messages; your wireless carrier’s standard message and data rates apply. If you change your number, remember to notify Avant so text messages with potentially sensitive loan information aren’t sent to your old phone number. You can stop receiving texts from Avant whenever you decide to opt out of the program, but it typically takes about 24 hours for text messages to end. 

BBB Rating
Trustpilot score4.7 
Benzinga’s score4
J.D. Power ratingN/A

Avant Terms and Loan Purpose

Loan terms are typically two to five years depending on the amount of the loan and your financial history and credit score. Avant offers loans ranging from $2,000 to $35,000. 

Avant provides unsecured personal loans that often are considered beneficial to the borrower. Unsecured loans do not require collateral, which typically makes them less risky than their secured loan counterpart. Collateral is a borrower’s personal property that they can offer their lender to secure a loan. If a borrower fails to pay or defaults on a secured loan, the lender can take collateral. Because Avant does not offer secured loans, borrowers are less exposed if they default on their loans. 

Unsecured loans are a higher risk for lenders. To mitigate the risk exposure, many lenders often have higher annual percentage rates (APRs) on unsecured loans. If a borrower defaults, Avant may require full repayment of outstanding debt.

Avant loan applicants must have a savings account or a checking account, and the lender may. require more information, such as bank documents, for the verification process. A business account can’t receive the funding because the loans are intended for individuals. 

Term optionsTwo to five years
Loan amounts available$2,000 to $35,000

Loan amounts range from $2,000 to $35,000 depending on your financial history. Loan amounts also vary from state to state. Avant loans can be used in a wide range of situations, including home improvements, emergencies and debt consolidation. 

Avant’s website offers a tool where potential customers can check loan options and determine eligibility. The tool helps gauge loan eligibility without impacting credit scores. 

Avant Approval Requirements

Minimum credit score requirementNot stated, but accepts scores at 600 

A large portion of Avant’s customers have credit scores in the 600 to 700 range. Credit scores are used to determine an individual’s creditworthiness and their ability to repay a loan. Credit scores typically fall on a scale between 300 and 850. Scores around 600 are considered fair while scores near 700 are good. 

It’s possible to get preapproved for an Avant loan by entering a personal code from an offer received in the mail or checking loan options available to you. Before applying for preapproval, review  your credit score to see whether it’s within Avant’s accepted range. 

You could receive an Avant loan within one business day.

Avant vs. Competitors

Avant stands out from its competitors because of its ability to offer unsecured personal loans to people with lower credit scores. The company accepts lower credit scores, but offsets its risk with higher APRs and additional fees. 

Personal loans through Avant provide borrowers more freedom because there are not strict requirements indicating what they should be used for. The loans provide assistance for people with weaker credit scores who don’t need a large amount of money.

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    Emergency Loans
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  • securely through Figure Personal Loan's website
    securely through Figure Personal Loan's website
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    Quick funding
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    Comparing Lenders
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    $0 Origination Fee
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    *AutoPay discount is only available prior to loan funding. Rates without AutoPay are 0.50% points higher. Excellent credit required for lowest rate. Rates vary by loan purpose.

  • securely through SoFi Personal Loans's website
    securely through SoFi Personal Loans's website
    Best For:
    No origination fees
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    Fixed rates from 8.99% APR to 29.99% APR reflect the 0.25% autopay interest rate discount and a 0.25% direct deposit interest rate discount. SoFi rate ranges are current as of 02/06/2024 and are subject to change without notice. The average of SoFi Personal Loans funded in 2022 was around $30K. Not all applicants qualify for the lowest rate. Lowest rates reserved for the most creditworthy borrowers. Your actual rate will be within the range of rates listed and will depend on the term you select, evaluation of your creditworthiness, income, and a variety of other factors. Loan amounts range from $5,000– $100,000. The APR is the cost of credit as a yearly rate and reflects both your interest rate and an origination fee of 0%-7%, which will be deducted from any loan proceeds you receive.

    Autopay: The SoFi 0.25% autopay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account. Autopay is not required to receive a loan from SoFi.

    Direct Deposit Discount: To be eligible to potentially receive an additional (0.25%) interest rate reduction for setting up direct deposit with a SoFi Checking and Savings account offered by SoFi Bank, N.A. or eligible cash management account offered by SoFi Securities, LLC (“Direct Deposit Account”), you must have an open Direct Deposit Account within 30 days of the funding of your Loan. Once eligible, you will receive this discount during periods in which you have enabled payroll direct deposits of at least $1,000/month to a Direct Deposit Account in accordance with SoFi’s reasonable procedures and requirements to be determined at SoFi’s sole discretion. This discount will be lost during periods in which SoFi determines you have turned off direct deposits to your Direct Deposit Account. You are not required to enroll in direct deposits to receive a Loan.

  • Best For:
    Consolidating Debt
    Rating:
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Avant Personal Loans Overall

Reviews on the Better Business Bureau’s website indicate Avant provides great customer service. The multiple ways to communicate with Avant give both current and potential customers the ability to ask questions.

People with lower credit scores, who are often turned down by other lenders, can get an unsecured personal loan up to $35,000.

Drawbacks to taking out a loan with Avant are the origination fees, late fees and dishonored payment fees. 

Overall, Avant is a good option for people with lower credit scores who are interested in receiving unsecured personal loans that can be applied to different situations.

Frequently Asked Questions

Before taking out a loan, research available options and, if possible, consult with a financial professional. Try boosting your credit score so you can get a lower APR and more flexible terms on your loan.

Does Avant need proof of income?

Avant requires transparency in terms of proof of income. For example, the company states that all interested applicants must give details about how they earn money. Avant offers an online tool — ideal for people with regular jobs — that speeds up the verification process. The online tool provides Avant details about how potential borrowers obtain income and informs the company about their ability to repay a loan. 

Potential borrowers can verify income using pay stubs from within 30 days of their application.  Avant may call your employer to check if you are employed.  

It usually takes Avant 24 to 72 hours to verify application information. 

Can taking out an Avant loan hurt your credit score?

Like most loans, it’s possible taking out an Avant loan might temporarily harm your credit score. Performing a hard inquiry on your credit score has the potential to lower your score for a few months. 

A hard inquiry happens when a lender checks you for a new line of credit. Typically, a hard check will impact your score by about five points. Avoid performing hard inquiries for multiple lines of credit at the same time because it has the potential to severely impact your score. Hard inquiry credit checks also go onto your credit record for about 24 months. If too many hard inquiries are performed at once, it may raise questions about your ability to repay certain loans. 

Avant allows borrowers to examine loan options using a soft inquiry that is not directly tied to starting a new line of credit when they are researching available options. Avant will perform a hard inquiry once a potential borrower decides to move ahead with the loan application process. 

Does Avant have a referral program?

Yes, Avant offers a referral program called Avant Referral Rewards. For each referral, a current Avant customer will usually receive a $50 Amazon gift card if the process is properly followed. They receive the reward after their referred friend's loan application and first loan payment is accepted. Once the necessary steps are completed, both the referred friend and you will receive a $50 gift card. It’s possible to receive up to $550 from referrals per year.

To refer a friend, enter your Avant dashboard and use the link for referring a friend. If possible, enter the email associated with your Avant account so the company knows where to send the reward. Once finished, send the referral to your friend. 

Sources

  1. Avant. “Avant Support.” Accessed April 23, 2022.
  2. Avant. “About Our Company.” Accessed April 23, 2022. 

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