Self Lender 2019 Review
Since 2014, Austin, Texas-based company Self Lender has assisted consumers with building and improving their credit. They are partnered with Minnesota-based bank Sunrise Banks, N.A. (founded in 1962) and Missouri-based Lead Bank (founded in 2010).
Self Lender offers credit-builder loans to consumers who are looking to build or rebuild their credit. A good credit score allows you to receive higher loan amounts, lower interest rates, and better terms.
However, many consumers such as students and young adults find that they are in need of building their credit since they have no credit, thin credit, or poor credit due to their lack of credit history.
Self Lender CEO and co-founder James Garvey wanted to "create a simple way to establish credit history for the first time." Self Lender's credit score monitoring and credit-builder loans allow consumers to improve their credit.
Self Lender members nationwide can open a Credit Builder Account, which is a low-cost installment loan (funded through a partnership with FDIC-insured banks) that allows you to build your credit and savings.
A Credit Builder Account is similar to a loan, but with one major difference: loan proceeds are placed in the certificate of deposit account first and payments must be made before you can unlock the CD.
The benefit of Self Lender's Credit Builder Account is that you build your credit as you make payments since all of these payments are reported to all three credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion).
While you can prepay the loan without any penalties, this isn't as beneficial to your credit as making your exact loan payment on time. Also bear in mind that failure to make payments will result damage to your credit.
Once you pay off your loan (or once you reach the end of the term), you will receive the deposit put in your CD and any of the accrued interest.
In order to be eligible for an account with Self Lender, you must meet the following requirements:
- Have a bank account, debit card, or prepaid card
- Have a valid email address and phone number
- Have a Social Security number
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Be a US permanent resident with a physical US address
There is no credit check, but Self Lender will check your eligibility through the ChexSystems database of your previous retail banking history and to make sure you haven't fraudulently shut down any of your checking accounts.
Signing up for Self Lender is simple. You simply need to visit their application page and provide some basic personal and financial information.
You can then choose your loan size and provide your payment information -- either through an online login for your checking account or its account and routing numbers. If you pay by debit card, you will have to pay an additional convenience fee.
Finally, you will confirm your financial details and designate a beneficiary for any funds paid into your account.
It will generally take around six months of on-time payments to establish your FICO® score. You will be able to see your credit score on the Self Lender dashboard.
Contact Self Lender: Website: www.selflender.com Email: [email protected] Address: Self Lender, Inc. 515 Congress Avenue Suite 2000 Austin, TX 78701
Self Lender Pros
- Build your credit: Self Lender's credit builder programs can help you build and improve your credit with all three credit bureaus.
- No income requirement or security deposit is necessary.
- Nationwide availability: Self Lender's credit-builder loans are available to US residents in all 50 states.
- Accredited service: Self Lender holds an A rating from the BBB.
- Educational blog: Their website offers an educational blog covering important financial topics including budgeting, credit cards, debt, loans, and more.
- Provides no cost credit monitoring and score tracking services.
Self Lender Cons
- If customers fail to make a payment, it is reported as a late payment to the credit bureaus once it is past 30 days past due.
Self Lender Pricing
- Self Lender provides free credit monitoring and score tracking.
- Self Lender offers a referral program that allows you to earn $10 when you refer a friend and they make their first successful credit builder account payment.
- The administrative fee is non-refundable and ranges from $9 to $15, depending on the type of account.
- Self Lender's credit-builder loan terms are either 12 or 24 months.
- Self Lender offers four different amounts: $525, $545, $1,000, or $1,700.
- Interest rates range from 12.03% to 15.65%. Larger loans may cost you less in interest.
- Late payments have a 15-day grace period on monthly payments. After this, the late fee is 5% of the scheduled monthly payment.
- There is a $1.25 late fee for the $525 credit builder account
- There is a $2.40 late fee for the $545 credit builder account
- There is a $4.45 late fee for the $1,000 credit builder account
- There is a $7.50 late fee for the $1,700 credit builder account
- Fixed monthly payments (which include interest) range from $25 to $150. Your Self Lender account is linked to your bank account and you can either make one-time payments each month or set up automatic payments. If you use your debit card to pay, there will be a convenience fee of $0.30 plus 2.99% of the payment amount.
- If you don't make a payment, Self Lender keeps the original deposit plus all the interest and fees you have paid.
- Self Lender customers can manage their payments from their online dashboard, which allows them to make monthly payments, track their credit history, and monitor their savings progress.
- Once your account has matured, you can request to have the funds paid out to you and receive them within 10 to 14 business days.
Self Lender's credit-builder loans are excellent for consumers need to establish and build their credit history. While you do have other options, we recommend using Self Lender as a safe and effective way to improve your credit.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a credit builder loan?
Credit builder loans a specific loans offered by banks and credit unions to help borrowers with little, no, or bad credit to build and improve their credit history. Your lender will report your payments to the three major credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion, which establishes and builds your credit history.
How do I know if Self Lender is right for me?
Self Lender is an excellent option for consumers who don't have the funds to acquire a secured credit card (more on that in a bit) and need to start building their credit history.
Self Lender's credit-builder loans help consumers build their savings and credit with their low-cost loans. Payments are reported to the three major credit bureaus, which allows your credit to improve.
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