What Are the Different Types of Personal Loans?

Wise Loan Editorial Team
By: Wise Loan Editorial Team
a woman uses a laptop computer to make an online payment with a credit card

When considering personal loans, a plethora of options await you. The right choice depends on several factors, such as your income, expenses, financial needs, and your current credit score. To help you make an informed decision about which loans to consider, let’s explore the various types of personal loans available now and in the future.

What is a Personal Loan?

A personal loan typically refers to an installment loan, wherein you borrow money from a lender and agree to repay it in specific installments over a predetermined period, which may vary from weekly to biweekly or monthly, depending on the loan terms.

It’s essential to distinguish personal loans from loans like mortgages or car loans. Although home and car loans are also taken for personal reasons and involve personal payments, they are not categorized as personal loans. The key distinction lies in their flexibility. Mortgage or car loans are intended for specific purposes, and the lender typically provides the money directly to the home seller or car dealership. In contrast, with a personal loan, you have more freedom as the funds are transferred directly to you, allowing you to decide how best to utilize them.

Unsecured vs. Secured Personal Loans

Personal loans fall into two main categories: secured and unsecured. Secured personal loans require collateral, reducing their flexibility compared to unsecured loans.

Common examples of secured loans include car loans and mortgages, where the lender can reclaim the asset (car or home) to recoup losses if the borrower defaults on payments. Similarly, personal loans can also be secured by valuable items like jewelry or electronics, with the lender retaining the right to claim these items if the borrower fails to repay the loan.

On the other hand, unsecured personal loans do not require collateral, and approval is based solely on the borrower’s creditworthiness. As these loans carry higher potential risks for the lender, they often come with higher interest rates.

Types of Personal Loans

Whether you opt for an unsecured loan or can secure it with collateral, there are various types of personal loans to consider:

  1. Payday Loans

What are they? Payday loans are short-term loans secured by your upcoming paycheck. Lenders provide you with the money now, based on your income, and retrieve the loan amount directly from your account on your payday.

How to get them? Payday loans can be obtained online or from local offices, usually requiring proof of income (such as pay stubs) and a checking account.

Pros and cons: Payday loans offer quick access to funds for urgent needs, but they can be expensive, and some less reputable lenders might trap borrowers in cycles of debt with accumulating fees.

  1. Debt Consolidation Loans

What are they? Debt consolidation loans are designed specifically for paying off other debts. Lenders may either pay off the debts directly or provide the borrower with funds to settle the debts themselves.

How to get them? You can apply for debt consolidation loans online or in person. It’s crucial to specify the purpose of the loan as debt consolidation.

Pros and cons: These loans can help lower overall interest rates and simplify debt management. However, they require discipline to avoid falling back into debt and increasing the financial burden.

  1. Pawn Loans

What are they? Pawn loans are obtained from pawnshops, where you offer a valuable item as collateral in exchange for a short-term loan. If the loan is not repaid within the specified time, the pawnshop can sell the item.

How to get them? To secure a pawn loan, you need to provide a valuable item to the pawnshop, indicating that you want to pawn it, not sell it.

Pros and cons: Pawn loans offer quick cash, but the loan amount is often lower than the market value of the item, and you risk losing the collateral if you can’t repay the loan.

  1. Short-Term Personal Loans

What are they? Short-term personal loans are borrowed for a few months to a year or two, with repayment typically made in monthly or biweekly installments. The funds can be used for various purposes.

How to get them? These loans can be applied for online or through local lenders, usually requiring a checking account for fund disbursement and automated payments.

Pros and cons: Short-term personal loans from reputable lenders can serve as a flexible financial tool to manage expenses and emergencies while helping build credit. The key to benefitting from these loans lies in making wise financial decisions.

To determine your eligibility for a Wise Loan personal loan, consider applying today. Depending on your situation and application timing, you may receive your funds on the same day.

The recommendations contained in this article are designed for informational purposes only.  Essential Lending DBA Wise Loan does not guarantee the accuracy of the information provided in this article; is not responsible for any errors, omissions, or misrepresentations; and is not responsible for the consequences of any decisions or actions taken as a result of the information provided above.

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About the Author

Wise Loan Editorial Team

Wise Loan Editorial Team

Introducing the Wise Loan Editorial Team – a collective of experienced finance and credit professionals dedicated to enhancing your financial path. Our team boasts over three decades of expertise in the finance sector, united in our commitment to deliver reliable and practical financial insights. True to the Wise Loan ethos, our goal is to positively impact the financial well-being of our customers.

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