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Are Non-U.S. Citizens Get a Personal Loan?
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Can Non-U.S. Citizens Get a Personal Loan?
Permanent residents who have Social Security numbers may qualify for a loan. Certain non-citizens may be eligible for alternative options to personal loans.
Last updated on May 18, 2022.
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The process of obtaining a personal loan isn’t easy for anyone, but non-United States citizens have an especially difficult time. Most lenders have strict eligibility requirements in terms of citizenship, which leaves non-residents with little access to inexpensive financing.
Some lenders also offer personal loans to non-citizens, depending on the particulars of their immigration and what documents they are able to provide.
If you can’t qualify for a , consider low-cost alternatives.
Can a non-U.S. citizen get a loan?
An non-U.S. citizen may be eligible for an individual loan, but criteria for eligibility differ by lender and it’s generally tougher than the case if you were a US citizen.
Some lenders might consider non-citizens to be high-risk borrowers on the basis of two factors: the duration of their stay in the country and a potential inability to obtain credit.
Since personal loans come with long repayment terms — ranging from two to seven years, however often longer, lenders are concerned you may leave the country prior to repaying the loan in full. Non-citizens also need time to build credit and may have low or no credit scores.
Lawful permanent residents, commonly known as green card holders, will have the easiest approach to obtaining an individual loan because they can usually show long-term status in the country and can provide Social Security numbers, which aid lenders in assessing the creditworthiness of.
The lender may also take an ITIN, instead of the Social Security number, though it’s not as common.
Apart from permanent residency certain lenders also require a valid visa. Visas that prove you’ll be within the country for more than the loan term you’re applying for may be especially helpful.
Making an application to get a personal loan as a non-citizen
is a straightforward process that can be completed online. To apply, you’ll need to meet the following general guidelines:
You must be at least 18 years old.
Show proof of identity with an ID issued by the government.
Provide an U.S.-based address.
Include contact information such as a phone number and email address.
Show proof of income and employment.
Almost all applications will require an SSN and/or ITIN to check your credit. While some lenders cater to borrowers with poor credit (629 or lower FICO scores) or thin credit histories generally, lenders want to see excellent credit (690 or higher FICO score) and at least two or three credit histories.
The process of pre-qualifying an individual loan
If you are able, ask the lender to see whether you meet its credit criteria. It includes a brief application and a soft credit check, which won’t affect your score on credit. Online lenders are more likely to offer pre-qualification than banks and credit unions.
If you have a Social Security number and you are eligible, you can apply for pre-qualification with several lenders on NerdWallet.
Adding a co-signer to your application
If you’re not able to qualify by yourself or with a co-signerat least preferably one who is a U.S. citizen — can increase your chances of getting approved for an individual loan or even help you obtain an interest rate that is lower or more loan amount.
A person adds their name to the primary applicant’s loan application. While this person will not have access to loan funds, they are legally responsible in respect of the loan amount and any additional charges in the event that you not be able to pay.
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Private loans for non-citizens
Here are some lenders that will accept applications from permanent residents or visa holders, as well as other immigrants. In some cases you’ll be required to provide evidence, such as the original of your green card or visa to show your immigration status is current.
SoFi offers personal loans without fees for borrowers with credit scores of good. SoFi also allows borrowers to add a co-signer to the loan application.
Minimum credit score: 680.
Loan amounts available: $5,000-$100,000.
Terms The term “two to seven years” is available.
Criteria for eligibility: Applicants must be permanent U.S. residents or non-permanent residents, such as DACA applicants and asylum seekers. E-2, E-3, H-1B, J-1, or O-1 visas are able to be used.
LendingClub offers personal loans for borrowers with good credit. This could be a good fit if you need a personal loan to consolidate debt and pay off debt.
Minimum credit score: 600.
Loan amounts available: $1,000-$40,000.
Terms available Terms available: Three and five years.
The requirements for eligibility: Applicants have to be U.S. residents or visa holders.
Upgrade will accept borrowers with poor credit. Customers who upgrade are able to sign up for free credit score monitoring and suggestions to improve their credit score.
Minimum credit score: 560.
The loan amounts are $1,000 to $50,000.
Terms available The term “two to seven years” is available.
Criteria for eligibility Candidates have to be U.S. residents or visa holders.
Universal Credit is an offshoot of Upgrade, but people with poor credit scores might have a better chance of being eligible for Universal Credit.
Minimum credit score: 560.
The loan amounts are $1,000 to $50,000.
Terms Terms: Three to five years.
The requirements for eligibility Candidates have to be U.S. residents or visa holders.
Oportun offers personal loans that include co-signed loans for people with low or moderate incomes with limited or no credit background. Oportun is able to accept ITINs or ID card issued by other countries.
Minimum credit score: None.
Available loan amounts: $300-$10,000.
Terms available: 12-51 months.
The eligibility requirements are as follows: According to a customer service representative applicants do not have to show proof of residency or visa.
Capital Good Fund
Capital Good Fund serves borrowers who have a low income but with no credit history or bad credit. It has several types of loans, including a loan to cover the costs of immigration.
Minimum credit score Score: None.
The loan amount is $300 to $50,000.
Terms available: 15 month up to 7 years.
Eligibility requirements: Applicants must be able to provide an SSN or ITIN along with a proof of identification.
Other alternatives to the traditional personal loans for non-citizens
If you’re not eligible for an individual loan you have other funding options. Stay clear of the short-term, high-cost loans such as , which can trap you in an endless cycle of debt and consider more affordable alternatives instead.
Stilt loans: Stilt offers personal loans specifically for immigrants and underserved communities. The company looks at more than your credit score when assessing your application. You don’t require an Social Security Number to be eligible. Stilt is open to non-citizens as well as those with F-1, H-1B, O-1, J-1, TN, L-1and G-1 visas. It will also consider DACA recipients as well as asylum seekers and refugees. Borrowers are able to pre-qualify.
Lending circles: are groups or communities that pool their resources to provide zero-interest loans for those who are members of the circle is in financial need. There may already be lending circles in your neighborhood however if you’re not sure where to begin, you can apply with Mission Asset Fund, which matches you with an existing lending group in your area comprised of 6-12 people. The amount of loans ranges from $300 to $2400.
Particularized loans at local credit unions Your credit union might offer loans specifically for those who aren’t citizens. Many of these loans will cover the costs associated with application, filing and renewal fees. They could be referred to as immigration loans as well as dreamer loans or citizenship loans. Many credit unions also offer ITIN loans that are loans that you can apply for with an ITIN instead of an SSN. It is necessary to be an active members of your credit union prior to applying.
Local community organizations In the event that you need to pay for an unexpected expense such as a car repair or medical bill, a non-profit organization might be able help. Look up the list of local resources, to find out more.
More NerdWallet resources for non-citizens
Author bio Jackie Veling covers personal loans for NerdWallet.
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