Top Lenders & Best Picks for You

Best Personal Loans in San Francisco, CA

Banner image
fact checked icon
Reviewed byMargarita Barresi
fact checked icon

Updated: December 28, 2023

Advertising & Editorial Disclosure


MoneyGeek's Picks for Best Personal Loan Lenders in San Francisco, CA

MoneyGeek evaluated personal loan lenders in San Francisco based on more than 30 data points, including loan affordability and accessibility, minimum credit score and income requirements, APR ranges and terms, disbursement time, origination and late fees, service quality and Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratings.

According to our research, LightStream is the best overall San Francisco lender. Your needs, on the other hand, will decide which lender is the best fit for you. For those with good credit, SoFi is the best lender in the city, while those with bad credit should go with Upstart. The best lenders for debt consolidation and home renovation are Upgrade and Best Egg respectively.

Best Personal Loan Lender Overall in San Francisco: LightStream


Best Personal Loan Lender for Bad Credit in San Francisco: Upstart


Best Personal Loan Lender for Good Credit in San Francisco: SoFi


Best Personal Loan for Debt Consolidation in San Francisco: Upgrade


Best Personal Loan for Home Improvement in San Francisco: Best Egg


How to Choose the Best Personal Loan Lender in San Francisco for You

You may be seeking a personal loan to consolidate debts, fund a holiday, make home improvements, or pay for college tuition, moving fees or medical bills. Your credit score, monthly income and debt-to-income ratio all come into play when lenders determine whether or not you qualify for a personal loan. You may also be interested to know that California’s average personal loan debt is $16,796, and the average interest rate is 10.21%.

To find a suitable lender and the best personal loans in San Francisco, MoneyGeek recommends you take the following steps:


Ask Yourself the Important Questions

Before choosing a lender and submitting an application for a personal loan, you should have answers to the following questions:

  1. How much money do I need to borrow?
  2. What is my credit score?
  3. Can I afford the monthly loan payment?
  4. What is my current debt?

Do Your Research

Because lenders quote differently, their rates and fees may vary. Before you submit a loan application, examine options from several lenders to determine which one meets your needs.

You are making a substantial commitment when you take out a personal loan. In certain situations, you may be repaying a personal loan for many years. Ensure that the loan and lender are appropriate for your needs before you make a selection. Keep in mind that MoneyGeek's suggestions are broad, requiring you to conduct additional research before making a choice.



When each lender gives you different features, options, rates, and fees to compare, it's normal to feel confused. You might be better off waiting a few days before making a choice, because personal loans are a big financial commitment. After you've done your research, but before you fill out the application, take some time to think about your options.


Read the Fine Print

When searching for personal loans, it's easy to overlook the fine print. Check the company's costs, such as late fees, origination fees and penalties, before choosing a lender. Note the interest rates and other requirements. In the long run, paying attention to the tiniest details may save you thousands of dollars.



Once you select a lender, you’ll submit your application. You’ll likely need to provide documentation that proves your identification, address and income. You can usually apply in person, although applying online can be highly convenient.

What to Do if You Can’t Get a Personal Loan in San Francisco

If a San Francisco lender rejects your application, talk to the lender to find out what went wrong and what you can do about it. Your lender may recommend that you shorten the loan terms or reduce the loan amount to improve your chances. Consider a cosigner or collateral-based loan if you're having trouble getting approved. If you have to, you can look for another lender. If your first attempt is turned down for whatever reason, it’s best to wait before reapplying

Some people turn to payday loans with high interest rates after being denied, which is a horrible choice. Your credit score will not increase even if you pay back a payday loan entirely and on time. Failure to make timely payments may also result in you being held liable for any unpaid interest and the outstanding balance. Late payments, on the other hand, may involve a collection agency, resulting in additional harm to your credit.

Frequently Asked Questions About Personal Loans in San Francisco

The best lender for you will depend on several criteria, including the type of loan you need, its amount and your financial profile. Below, we've answered frequently asked questions to help you learn more about personal loans in San Francisco.

LightStream is the best personal loan lender in San Francisco, California. SoFi is the best lender for people with excellent credit, whereas Upstart is the best for those with poor credit. Upgrade and Best Egg are the best lenders for debt consolidation and home renovation loans, respectively.

With an APR range starting at just 3.22%, Upstart provides the lowest interest rates on personal loans in San Francisco.

It is entirely dependent on the lender. Borrowers use personal loans for a variety of reasons, including vacation funding. Some loan providers restrict how you can use borrowed cash. Check with the lenders in San Francisco to see whether you can use their loans to fund vacations.

In San Francisco, you can use most personal loans to make home improvements. But you should always ask the lender if there are any restrictions on the loans it offers.

You can use personal loans in San Francisco for nearly any rational purpose. However, depending on the lender, the loan may be subject to usage limitations. Some lenders prohibit their loans from being used for refinancing mortgages or other loans, paying tuition, acquiring companies, purchasing bonds or stocks, or engaging in unlawful or gambling activities.

In San Francisco, the maximum amount you can borrow through a personal loan varies from lender to lender. You may be able to get a loan for $1,000 or up to $100,000, depending on the lender.

Lenders process most loans within one to seven days.

Yes. However, some lenders may apply a prepayment penalty if you pay off your personal loan early. Contact the lender or read your loan's fine print for further details.

Our Personal Loan Methodology

MoneyGeek reviewed more than 30 personal loan lenders using 35+ individual data points across the following six key categories, including loan affordability, accessibility, consumer friendliness, customer service, flexibility and lender transparency.

Within each category, we considered several individual data points that we feel carry the most weight when choosing a personal loan lender. These factors include APR ranges, available loan amount, minimum credit score, minimum income amount, application fees and disbursement time.

At MoneyGeek, we value you, the consumer, so we also factor in each lender’s customer support, business ratings and additional features that could make your experience easier and more accessible, like prequalification, payment options and mobile apps.

After careful consideration and calculation, we select our picks with your best interests in mind. Our personal loan recommendations and expert tips are meant to help you make the best decision when choosing a lender that meets your needs.

Shield Insurance

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.