Best Loans for Bad Credit in Ohio for 2024

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Reviewed byAlvin Yam, CFP
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Reviewed byAlvin Yam, CFP
Edited byLukas Velunta
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Updated: April 25, 2024

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Happy Money is the best personal loan lender for bad credit in Ohio, holding a MoneyGeek score of 94 out of 100. Its loan services excel in customer service, application and approval process and reputation and transparency. The runner-up Avant, with a MoneyGeek score of 92, is noted for its broad loan terms and flexibility, speedy application and approval process and focused customer service.

MoneyGeek reviewed four personal loan lenders in Ohio that disclosed their minimum credit score requirements ranged between 580 and 640 to help identify the best personal loans for bad credit in Ohio. Although these lenders are highlighted, other institutions like Credit Union of Ohio, OUCU Financial and Bridge Credit Union are also potential options for those seeking personal loans with local expertise and services.


    Overall Best Bad Credit Loan Lender in Ohio

  • Happy Money

    • 94MoneyGeek Score
    • 11.72% to 17.99%APR Range
    • 640Minimum Credit Score
    • $5,000 to $40,000Loan Amount Range
    • 24 to 60 monthsRepayment Terms

    Happy Money is MoneyGeek's pick for best personal loan lender for bad credit in Ohio, with a MoneyGeek score of 94 out of 100. It is a fintech company partnering with federally insured lending partners by NCUA to provide personal loans.

    Eligible borrowers with a minimum credit score of 640 can access loan amounts ranging from $5,000 to $40,000, typically receiving funds by the next day. Happy Money offers flexible repayment terms and doesn't charge fees for late payments or early repayment. But only loans for debt consolidation are available, and an origination fee is applicable.


    • Doesn't charge late, early repayment, bounced check, failed ACH or other fees
    • Flexible repayment terms from 24 to 60 months
    • Conducts soft credit pulls


    • Only offers loans for debt consolidation
    • Charges an origination fee
    • $40,000 borrowing limit
    Happy Money

    Runner-Up for Best Bad Credit Loan Lender in Ohio

  • Avant

    • 92MoneyGeek Score
    • 9.95% to 35.99%APR Range
    • 580Minimum Credit Score
    • $2,000 to $35,000Loan Amount Range
    • 12 to 60 monthsRepayment Terms

    Avant is the runner-up for the best bad credit loan lender in Ohio, with a MoneyGeek score of 92 out of 100. It provides loan services through WebBank, a state-chartered, FDIC member bank.

    The lender caters to borrowers with bad credit, offering a minimum credit score requirement of 580 and a loan amount range from $2,000 to $35,000. Funds are typically available the next day. Avant allows checking loan options without a credit score impact and presents flexible repayment terms. However, it charges an administration fee up to 9.99% and also has late fees and dishonored payment fees.


    • Doesn't charge a prepayment penalty
    • Flexible repayment terms between 12 to 60 months
    • Has a mobile app


    • Charges an administration fee up to 9.99%
    • Has late fees and dishonored payment fees
    • Doesn't allow co-signers or joint applications

Calculate Your Monthly Payment in Ohio

The average new account balance for personal loans in Ohio is $7,627, according to the Credit Industry Snapshot report by TransUnion. Personal loans typically involve fixed monthly repayments over a set period, where borrowers pay back both principal and interest.

If you have bad credit, it's particularly useful to calculate your monthly loan payments in advance. For estimating these payments, you may find the personal loan calculator by MoneyGeek a practical tool.


Best Bad Credit Loans by Credit Score in Ohio

Ohio has an average credit score of 716, which is slightly above the national average of 715 based on Experian data.

Even with a bad credit score, it's possible to secure a personal loan. Lenders in Ohio may offer loans to individuals with less-than-ideal credit, although these loans could come with higher interest rates and less accommodating terms. Review the following table to determine which personal loan lenders in Ohio are a match for your credit score.

What to Do if Your Loan Application Is Denied in Ohio

Personal loan application denials are common, especially when your credit score is lower than average — but it doesn't have to halt your borrowing journey. Here's what you can do to enhance your chances of approval for future applications.

Find out the reason for the denial

If your loan application has been denied, it may be because of a poor credit score, a high debt-to-income ratio, insufficient income or mistakes on your application. Review the lender's denial notice to understand where your application fell short. This insight helps you address these issues before submitting future loan applications.

Modify your loan terms

You might discuss with your lender whether changing the loan amount or the repayment terms could lead to approval. Some lenders are willing to reconsider if you adjust these aspects of your loan request.

Find another lender

Lenders have different criteria for approving loans. Compare them and consider factors to find one that aligns with your needs and credit profile.

  • Eligibility requirements: Different lenders have various requirements for credit score, income, debt-to-income ratio and employment history. Knowing these requirements helps you find a match.
  • Interest rates: Search for lenders with competitive interest rates to reduce the cost of borrowing, especially with bad credit.
  • Additional fees: Understand if lenders charge fees like origination, late or prepayment fees, and factor these into your decision.
  • Loan terms: Different lenders provide various repayment terms. Short terms can lead to higher monthly payments but less interest paid over time, whereas long terms lower monthly payments but increase total interest.
  • Customer service and reputation: Research the lender's reputation and the quality of their customer service. A responsive and helpful lender can make the loan process more manageable.
Look for alternatives

Borrowers with poor credit might find alternatives to personal loans, such as secured loans, credit builder loans or borrowing from friends and family. Each option has pros and cons, which you should explore to find the most suitable choice for your situation.

Improve your credit score

By working on improving your credit score over time, your chances of loan approval increase. Methods to improve your score include paying bills on time, reducing debt levels and keeping credit card balances low.

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Work on improving your credit score before applying for a personal loan to increase your chances of approval and getting better terms. Here are some long-term steps to consider:

  • Monitor your credit utilization ratio: Keep your credit utilization ratio low, as high credit utilization can negatively impact your credit score. Aim to use less than 30% of your available credit limit.
  • Don’t close old credit cards: The length of your credit history contributes to your credit score. Even if you no longer use a credit card, keep it open unless it has an annual fee.

Alvin Yam, CFP

FAQ About Bad Credit Loans in Ohio

When shopping for personal loans in Ohio, it's common for borrowers, especially those with bad credit, to have questions or concerns. We compiled answers to some frequently asked questions, offering clarity and guidance to help you make well-informed decisions.

What is the best personal loan lender for bad credit in Ohio?
Which lender in Ohio has the lowest APR rates for personal loans?
Which lender in Ohio has the lowest minimum credit score requirement for personal loans?
How long does it take to get a bad credit loan in Ohio?
Can I pay off my personal loan early in Ohio?

Experian. "What Is the Average Credit Score in the US?." Accessed April 10, 2024.

TransUnion. "Credit Industry Snapshot." Accessed April 10, 2024.

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The content on this page is accurate as of the posting/last updated date; however, some of the rates mentioned may have changed. We recommend visiting the lender's website for the most up-to-date information available.

Editorial Disclosure: Opinions, reviews, analyses and recommendations are the author’s alone and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any bank, lender or other entity. Learn more about our editorial policies and expert editorial team.