Best Personal Loans in South Dakota for 2024

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Updated: July 10, 2024

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First Tech and PenFed are MoneyGeek's top picks for personal loans in South Dakota, with scores of 98 and 96, respectively. First Tech stands out for its excellent customer service and education, while PenFed is known for flexible loan terms.

When searching for a personal loan, your credit score, income history and debt-to-income ratio are important. In South Dakota, the average credit score is 734, according to Experian data from 2023. This suggests the average borrower might get good loanrate and term options, but this isn't certain.

MoneyGeek considered lender reputation, transparency, annual percentage rate (APR) ranges, required credit scores and loan term flexibility when choosing the top lenders. With these factors in mind and a trusted lender, South Dakotans can confidently manage their finances.

MoneyGeek Logo IconBest PersonalLoan LendersSouth Dakota

Best Personal Loan Lenders in South Dakota

MoneyGeek's personal loans scoring system is designed to give a comprehensive overview of each lender’s performance in key areas that matter to borrowers. We use a point-based system, assigning scores according to the presence or absence of certain desirable features in various critical categories.

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Our analysis was completed in April 2024 and considers banks and lenders who are licensed to do business in South Dakota. We also consider financial companies who partner with federally insured institutions to offer competitive rates.

34Lenders Analyzed

    Best Overall Personal Loan Lender

  • First Tech

    • 98MoneyGeek Score
    • 8.94% to 18.00%APR Range
    • UndisclosedMinimum Credit Score
    • $500 to $50,000Loan Amount Range
    • 6 to 84 monthsRepayment Terms

    First Tech is MoneyGeek's top personal loan lender in South Dakota, scoring 98 out of 100. This lender offers APRs ranging from 8.94% to 18.00%, which is notably lower than some high-end rates examined. With repayment terms extending from six to 84 months, First Tech provides greater flexibility in loan durations compared to providers with shorter maximum terms. It particularly stands out in the areas of customer service, education and competitive rates, ensuring a superior borrowing experience through informative guidance and economical options.


    • Insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA)
    • Balanced, low APRs
    • Doesn't charge an application or loan origination fee


    • Need to be a member to apply
    • Could provide more details on the loan application process
    • Little published information about credit score requirements
    First Tech

    Runner-Up Best Personal Loan Lender

  • PenFed

    • 96MoneyGeek Score
    • 7.99% to 17.99%APR Range
    • UndisclosedMinimum Credit Score
    • Up to $50,000Loan Amount Range
    • Up to 60 monthsRepayment Terms

    MoneyGeek's runner-up for best personal loan lender in South Dakota is PenFed Credit Union, with a score of 96 out of 100. PenFed offers APRs ranging from 7.99% to 17.99%, balancing competitive rates with reasonable fees. The lender shines with flexible repayment terms of up to 60 months, distinguishing itself from others. PenFed's exemplary performance in customer service, education and loan flexibility further solidify its position as a top choice for borrowers.


    • Offers some of the lowest APRs available
    • Insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA)
    • No early repayment penalty


    • No information provided about credit score requirements
    • $50 minimum monthly loan payment
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The amount of monthly debt payments you have relative to your monthly gross income is called your debt-to-income ratio or DTI.

Most lenders prefer to see a debt-to-income ratio of 35-40% or below for secured loans, and 40-45% or below for unsecured personal loans. Debt includes items like mortgages, car loans, credit cards and existing personal loans. A debt-to-income ratio above 50% is considered high and so approval may be more difficult, or your loan may come with higher interest rates. — Alvin Yam, CFP®

Calculate Your Monthly South Dakota Loan Payment

According to our analysis, lenders in South Dakota offer personal loan products averaging about 57 months, which can vary depending on the financial institution and your credit profile. Explore your loan options with our personal loan calculator, a simple tool to calculate monthly payments and total loan costs based on amount, interest rate and term length, helping you make informed decisions before committing.

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Estimate the monthly payment for your loan.

Updated: Jul 12, 2024

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Although MoneyGeek partners with some of the companies we recommend, our content is written and reviewed by an independent team of writers, editors and licensed agents. Learn more about our editorial policies and expert editorial team.

    Best Personal Loan Lender for Bad Credit

  • 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

    MoneyGeek's pick for the best personal loan lender in South Dakota for borrowers with low credit is Happy Money, with a MoneyGeek score of 94 out of 100. Happy Money partners with various federally insured financial institutions to originate installment loans, offering competitive rates and clear disclosure of minimum credit score requirements. The APR range of 11.72% to 17.99% is notably competitive, and borrowers need a minimum credit score of 640 to qualify. Happy Money particularly excels in providing upfront information and ensuring an efficient application and approval process for its customers.


    • Works with 10 federally insured lenders to originate all loans
    • Application requirements are clear and include credit score criteria
    • No charges are applied just for applying for a loan


    • Charges an origination fee
    • Longer time to wait for loan approval compared to other lenders analyzed
    Happy Money

How does MoneyGeek score lenders for bad credit loans?

    Best Personal Loan Lender for Debt Consolidation

  • Alliant Credit Union

    • 96MoneyGeek Score
    • 10.99% to 13.99%APR Range
    • UndisclosedMinimum Credit Score
    • $1,000 to $100,000Loan Amount Range
    • 12 to 60 monthsRepayment Terms

    MoneyGeek's pick for the best entity in South Dakota for borrowers looking to consolidate debt is Alliant Credit Union, with a high MoneyGeek score of 96 out of 100. Alliant's APR range is competitive, spanning 10.99% to 13.99%, which reflects favorably among other options MoneyGeek analyzed. As an online-only financial institution, access to its personal loans requires membership in good standing for 90 days. Excelling particularly in transparency and competitive rates, Alliant provides clarity and value which are significant for borrowers navigating debt consolidation.


    • Among the highest loan limits available in our analysis
    • Insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA)
    • No prepayment penalties


    • An online-only credit union, no physical locations
    • Membership required for 90 days prior to loan application
    Alliant Credit Union

How does MoneyGeek score lenders for debt consolidation?

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Interest on personal loans is generally not tax deductible as personal loans are considered consumer debt. But there are some exceptions where the interest may qualify:

  • When consolidating high-interest qualifying debts like credit cards or student loans, if used to pay off those debts.
  • If used for home improvements that increase the home's value.
  • If the loan proceeds can be demonstrated as used exclusively for business expenses or starting a business.
  • In some cases, if the loan is used for investment purposes related to income-generating assets.

Alvin Yam, CFP®

The Impact of Credit Score on Loan Repayment in South Dakota

When seeking a personal loan in South Dakota, consider your credit report, income and debt-to-income ratio — key factors that lenders examine to determine your creditworthiness. The best lenders, as identified by MoneyGeek, were evaluated on reputation, transparency, interest rates, minimum required credit scores and the option for various loan terms.

Reinforcing your credit score can yield considerable benefits, potentially securing you lower APRs, and a credit score enhancement may be advantageous prior to applying for a loan.

For insight into how your credit score influences your monthly payments, refer to the accompanying table.

Data filtered by:Results filtered by:
Credit Band:
Credit Band:690 to 719
Loan Amount:
Loan Amount:$2,000
$348Term Length (Months)6
$180Term Length (Months)12
$97Term Length (Months)24
$69Term Length (Months)36
$55Term Length (Months)48
$47Term Length (Months)60
$42Term Length (Months)72
$38Term Length (Months)84

This table offers an approximation of monthly payments, calculated using median personal loan interest rates typical for various credit score ranges. Please remember that these numbers are median estimates, provided for general guidance. They should not be taken as precise rates for everyone in each credit score category. Actual interest rates can differ due to lender-specific policies, prevailing market conditions and unique borrower profiles.

Understanding Personal Loans: Pros and Cons

Personal loans often offer lower interest rates and the flexibility to consolidate various debts into one manageable payment, making them a versatile financial tool for those looking to address a range of expenses. They may also provide a quick influx of cash, often with the option for a co-signer to help secure more favorable terms.

Despite their advantages, personal loans also carry certain risks, such as the potential for origination fees or asset loss in the case of a secured personal loan; it's important to carefully consider these factors when evaluating loan options. Learn more about personal loan benefits and drawbacks to make an informed decision.

The good and bad of personal loans

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  • Lower borrowing costs compared to credit cards
  • Simplification of multiple debts into one payment
  • Rapid access to financing for immediate needs
  • Eligibility enhancement with a creditworthy co-signer
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  • Increased overall loan cost due to origination fees
  • Prepayment penalties for settling the loan early
  • Risk of losing assets tied to secured loans
  • Potential for accumulating unmanageable debt

Frequently Asked Questions About South Dakota Personal Loans

If you have questions about personal loans, MoneyGeek has answers to help you make an informed decision before applying.

Who is the best lender in South Dakota for personal loans?
Where is the best place to get a personal loan in South Dakota?
Who has the best personal loan interest rates in South Dakota?
What can I use a personal loan for in South Dakota?
What are some personal loan red flags to look out for?
Do lenders consider income level when applying for a personal loan?
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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.