Best Personal Loans in Tennessee 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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First Tech and PenFed are MoneyGeek's top personal loan picks for Tennessee, scoring 98 and 96, respectively. They stand out for their customer service, low interest rates and clear conditions. MoneyGeek chose the best lenders by looking at their reputation, interest rates, and how easy it is to apply.

Your credit score, income and debt-to-income ratio are considered by lenders when they decide if you qualify for a loan. Tennessee's average credit score, according to Experian data from 2023, is 705. This suggests the average borrower could get a loan with good terms.

MoneyGeek Logo IconBest PersonalLoan LendersTennessee

Best Personal Loan Lenders in Tennessee

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 March 2024 and considers banks and lenders who are licensed to do business in Tennessee. We also consider financial companies who partner with federally insured institutions to offer competitive rates.

34Lenders Analyzed

    Overall Best Personal Loan Lender in Tennessee

  • 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 the top lender for personal loans in Tennessee, with a MoneyGeek score of 98 out of 100. The lender's APR range is 8.94% to 18.00%, lower than its competitors. First Tech also stands out for exceptional customer service and educational resources. It offers flexible repayment terms from 6 to 84 months, allowing ample time for borrowers to pay back their loans.


    • Insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA)
    • Doesn't charge an application or loan origination fee
    • No early repayment penalty


    • Must be a member to apply
    • Provides limited details on loan application process
    • Little published information about credit score requirements
    First Tech

    Runner-Up for Best Personal Loan Lender in Tennessee

  • PenFed

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

    PenFed is MoneyGeek's runner-up for the best personal loan lender in Tennessee, scoring 96 out of 100. With an APR range of 7.99% to 17.99%, PenFed offers a competitive average rate relative to other lenders. It excels in loan terms and flexibility, with repayment timelines up to 60 months. This combination makes it a leading choice for borrowers seeking to understand and manage their loans effectively.


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


    • 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% to 40% or below for secured loans, and 40% to 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 Tennessee Loan Payment

According to our analysis, lenders in Tennessee offer personal loan products averaging about 57 months. 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.


    Best Personal Loan Lender in Tennessee 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

    Happy Money the best personal loan provider in Tennessee for borrowers with low credit, with a MoneyGeek score of 94 out of 100. Although not a traditional lender, this company connects consumers with a network of partner institutions for loan origination. Happy Money offers a competitive APR range of 11.72% to 17.99%, with a minimum credit score requirement of 640. The provider excels in customer support and educational resources and stands out for its upfront provision of important loan information.


    • Works with 10 federally insured lenders to originate all loans.
    • Transparent eligibility requirements, including credit score minimum.
    • No application fee.


    • Partner lenders charge an origination fee
    • Longer wait time for loan approval than competitors
    Happy Money

How does MoneyGeek score lenders for bad credit loans?

    Best Personal Loan Lender in Tennessee 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

    Alliant Credit Union is MoneyGeek's pick for the best personal loan provider for debt consolidation in Tennessee, scoring 96 out of 100. To qualify for an Alliant personal loan, you must be an established member for three months, showcasing a commitment to client relationships.

    Offering APRs from 10.99% to 13.99%, Alliant's rates are competitive, sitting favorably within MoneyGeek's analyzed range. Alliant ranks well for its candid communication and optimal rate offerings, indicating that it ensures borrowers receive clear information and affordable options.


    • 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 branches
    • Have to be a member for 90 days to apply
    Alliant Credit Union

How does MoneyGeek score lenders for debt consolidation?

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Interest on personal loans is generally not tax deductible because 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®

Impact of Credit Score on Loan Repayment in Tennessee

When seeking a personal loan in Tennessee, consider your creditworthiness, income and debt-to-income ratio. These factors will influence the terms of the loan. MoneyGeek's rankings for the best personal loan lenders in the state take into account lender reputation, transparency about loan costs and requirements, APR ranges, minimum credit scores and the flexibility of loan terms.

Your credit score is a significant determinant of your loan's terms. Enhancing your credit score before applying could therefore lead to more favorable APRs and financial conditions. Refer to the table below to understand how different credit scores can affect your monthly loan payments.

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 approximates monthly payments, calculated using median personal loan interest rates typical for various credit score ranges. 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.

Pros and Cons of Personal Loans in Tennessee

Personal loans offer a suite of benefits, such as potentially lower interest rates compared with credit cards and the option to consolidate various debts into one manageable payment, both of which can streamline your financial strategy. Additionally, having a co-signer can enhance your loan terms, while the ability to use funds for a gamut of needs provides considerable flexibility.

However, entering into a personal loan agreement does bear risks, like origination fees and the possibility of asset forfeiture in secured loans. Consider the benefits and drawbacks of personal loans before you commit.

The pros and cons of personal loans

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  • Competitive interest rates often better than credit cards
  • Streamlines debt with single payment consolidation
  • Rapid approval and funding for immediate needs
  • Co-sign option allows for improved loan terms
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  • Increased overall loan cost due to origination fees
  • Potential penalties for prepayment of the loan
  • Risk of losing collateral assets with secured loans
  • Encouragement of excessive debt due to quick approval processes

FAQ About Tennessee Personal Loans

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

What is the best lender in Tennessee for personal loans?
Where is the best place to get a personal loan in Tennessee?
What has the best personal loan interest rates in Tennessee?
What can I use a personal loan for in Tennessee?
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.