Upstart Personal Loan Review

Upstart is an AI-based lending platform that allows borrowers with fair credit scores to take out loans as small as $1,000 and as large as $50,000.
Upstart Loan Review
Mateo Beltroy
Author: Mateo Beltroy

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About Upstart

Upstart is an artificial intelligence (AI)-based lending platform that connects borrowers with lending partners. Upstart’s use of AI allows them to approve loans much quicker than other similar lenders.

Upstart uses non-traditional variables like education and employment to determine creditworthiness. This is unique compared to their competition which relies on traditional methods such as credit score, income, debt-to-income ratio, etc.

Upstart was founded in 2012 and is based in San Mateo, CA.



Upstart Loan Details
Minimum credit score/credit range
5.20% - 35.99%
Loan amounts
$1,000 - $50,000
36 - 60 months
Approval turnaround
Next business day
All States
Late fee - 5% or $15
Other fees
Origination fee - Up to 8%

Who Is Upstart Best For

Upstart is best for borrowers with weaker credit scores. Upstart’s AI-based acceptance process uses variables like education, income, location, etc. to determine the creditworthiness of the borrower. This is an advantage for borrowers with low credit scores but with stable incomes.

Upstart also provides loans of just $1,000 in all states except Ohio ($6,000), Massachusetts ($7,000), New Mexico ($5,100), and Georgia. This allows borrowers to get a loan for the exact amount they need instead of having to get larger loans that end up being unnecessary and more expensive.

Upstart’s benefits don’t come without disadvantages though. Upstart personal loans come with an origination fee of up to 8% and an extremely high APR on the upper end of their range.

Upstart Personal Loan Uses

Upstart allows borrowers to use their loans for credit card consolidation, debt consolidation, weddings, moving, medical expenses, home improvement, and refinancing student loans.

Upstart personal loans cannot be used for illegal activities, purchasing weapons or firearms, and educational expenses in California, Connecticut, Illinois, Washington, and Washington, D.C.

How to Contact Upstart

Upstart’s customer support line is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM to 8:00 PM ET and Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 AM to 8 PM ET. 

Upstart’s payment support line is open Monday to Friday 9 AM to 9 PM ET and on Saturday from 10 AM to 7 PM ET.

Our Verdict

Upstart’s leading AI-based acceptance program is unique and provides many advantages to users with a lower credit score. The variables used in their AI acceptance allow them to accept more loans quickly, which can be a huge pro for borrowers who need cash immediately.

Although Upstart does come with some hefty fees and APR, we still think the terms are fair given the advantages. The fact that borrowers can take out loans as small as $1,000 means that they are given more flexibility in getting a loan that fits their needs perfectly without having to take on too much debt.

Overall we think Upstart is a powerful lending platform that is fit for more borrowers.

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