LightStream Personal Loans Review 2023 (2023)

Editorial Note: We earn a commission from partner links on Forbes Advisor. Commissions do not affect our editors' opinions or evaluations.

Who Is LightStream Best For?

LightStream offers personal loans up to $100,000 for a number of purposes—including the purchase of land or a tiny house, loan types not frequently offered by traditional lenders. These high loan amounts combined with a quick application and funding timeline make LightStream a great option for prospective borrowers who need a large loan with some flexibility.

Like some other online lenders, however, LightStream places some limitations on the use of loan funds. Borrowers can’t use their loans to pay for post-secondary education or to cover business expenses. Still, LightStream’s range of loan amounts, terms and annual percentage rates (APRs)—plus a minimum required credit score of just 660—make it a flexible option for many would-be borrowers.

LightStream loans are available to borrowers in all 50 states, plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico.

LightStream Loan Purposes

Permitted uses Prohibited uses
Home improvementsRefinance any existing loan with LightStream
Land purchasesFund a cash-out refinance loan
Debt consolidationRefinance previous college or post-secondary education loans
Medical expensesCover college or post-secondary education expenses
Wedding costsFund business loans
Preschool and K-12 expensesPurchase stocks or bonds
Fund illegal activities

LightStream Personal Loan Details

Loan Amounts & Terms

  • Loan amounts. LightStream offers personal loans from $5,000 to $100,000, depending on needs and qualifications.
  • Loan terms. In general, LightStream’s personal loans are available for terms between two and seven years—or 24 and 84 months. However, home improvement, swimming pool and solar loans may have repayment terms as long as 12 years, or 144 months.

Loan Costs

  • APR. LightStream offers borrowers APRs between 5.99% to 23.99% if they sign up for autopay. Borrowers who do not sign up for autopay are subject to APRs 0.50% higher. APR ranges available vary depending on loan purpose.
  • Origination fees. LightStream does not charge any origination fees.
  • Late fees. Borrowers are not charged late fees—although late payments will result in higher interest accrual.
  • Prepayment penalty fees. LightStream does not impose prepayment penalties on borrowers who want to pay off their loans early.

Perks & Features

In addition to the 0.50% APR reduction for autopay enrollees, LightStream offers customers a few other helpful perks:

  • Rate beat program. LightStream will beat a competitor’s interest rate by 0.1% for applicants who show they were approved by that competitor for a regular fixed-rate loan with the same amount, term, purpose and payment method. Terms apply.
  • Loan experience guarantee. LightStream borrowers who have had their loan for fewer than 30 days and who are unhappy with their experience can get $100. To qualify, borrowers must contact LightStream and submit a questionnaire that helps LightStream better understand customer needs and improve its services. Each borrower is limited to one $100 payment per funded loan.

How to Qualify for a LightStream Personal Loan

Personal loan applications are approved or declined based on a number of factors. All lenders have their own unique underwriting requirements, but these typically include information from an applicant’s credit profile and other factors that demonstrate the ability to repay the loan, such as income. Meeting the requirements below won’t guarantee approval, but they can help you decide if a personal loan is the right fit for you.

Credit Score Requirements

To qualify for a LightStream loan, applicants must have a minimum FICO credit score of at least 660. What’s more, a strong applicant will have several years of credit history, including multiple account types—credit cards, auto loans and mortgage debt, for example—as demonstrated by their credit profile. While a good credit score may be enough to get approved, the lowest rates require excellent credit.

Unlike many other online lenders, LightStream does not have a prequalification process. Therefore, prospective borrowers must submit a formal application and submit to a hard credit check to find out if they qualify and, if so, at what rate.

Income Requirements

To get approved, LightStream requires loan applicants to have income that is stable enough and sufficient to repay both current debt obligations and a new LightStream loan. In addition to income requirements, LightStream evaluates applicants based on their liquid assets, cash down payments on real estate, retirement savings and revolving credit card debt. Keep in mind, however, that LightStream does not consider income that is derived from the marijuana industry.

Taken along with the purpose of the loan, these factors help determine an applicant’s debt-to-income (DTI) ratio and likelihood of approval.

Co-signers and Co-applicants

LightStream does not allow co-signers, but prospective borrowers can submit a joint application. In contrast to some lenders, co-applicants do not need to live at the same address as the primary applicant.

Prospective borrowers must indicate at the beginning of the application process that they’ll be filing a joint application and provide details about both applicants in the online application. LightStream will then weigh each applicant’s credit, income and other details equally when evaluating the application.

Customer Reviews

LightStream has a 2.1-star rating on TrustPilot, but this is based on only 11 reviews published on the platform. Other online reviews reveal much higher ratings from LightStream customers—typically between four and five stars, overall.

Borrowers who report positive experiences with LightStream indicate that the application is quick and easy, with funds available in a reasonable amount of time. Likewise, many customers share that the process is transparent. Those who gave LightStream lower ratings reported issues like having to follow up with the lender for application status updates, receiving funds later than expected and a lack of responsiveness from customer support.

How to Apply for a LightStream Personal Loan

LightStream offers a completely online application process, but a representative may need to contact you via phone to obtain additional information. To apply for a LightStream personal loan, access the application online and provide the following:

  • Loan purpose, amount and term
  • Payment method
  • Personal and contact information
  • Employment information
  • Current expenses, including monthly housing payments (e.g., rent or mortgage)

Related: How To Apply For A Personal Loan

Time to Receive Funds

LightStream borrowers can receive funds as early as the same day if the loan is approved before 2:30 p.m. EST on a banking business day. To receive same-day funding, the applicant must also: review and electronically sign the loan agreement; provide LightStream with funding preferences and relevant banking information; and complete the final verification process—all before 2:30 p.m. on the day the loan is approved.

How LightStream Personal Loans Stack Up

The best personal loans offer competitive rates, flexible loan amounts and a wide range of terms. Here’s how Upgrade personal loans stack up against other popular lenders:

Best forLow interest ratesTop of the line benefits and featuresCredit scores below 670Terms up to 72 months
Loan amounts (depending on the loan purpose)$5,000 to $100,000$5,000 to $100,000$1,000 to $50,000$3,500 to $40,000
Term lengthTwo to 12 yearsTwo to seven yearsTwo to seven yearsThree to six years

LightStream Vs. SoFi

LightStream and SoFi both offer unsecured personal loans between $5,000 and $100,000, depending on the loan purpose. However, LightStream beats SoFi when it comes to interest rates and available term lengths. What’s more, LightStream tends to have more permitted loan purposes than SoFi. For example, through SoFi you cannot use your personal loan for land purchases, but you can with LightStream.

If you have good to excellent credit, you may be eligible for a more affordable loan through LightStreams low rates.

Related: SoFi Personal Loans Review

LightStream Vs. Upgrade

While LightStream’s personal loans are tailored to borrowers with good credit scores, Upgrade makes financing available to those with fair or poor credit. With one of the best personal loans for bad credit, Upgrade makes a strong case if you don’t meet LightStream’s minimum score requirement of 660. However, don’t expect to see rates and loan amounts comparable to LightStream. Upgrade offers loans between $1,000 and $50,000.

Related: Upgrade Personal Loans Review

LightStream Vs. Marcus

When it comes to Marcus personal loans, its loan details are tighter than LightStream. For example, it only offers loan amounts between $3,500 to $40,000 and terms between three and six years. If you have a score of at least 710, you can typically land better terms, such as lower interest rates and larger loan limits, with LightStream.

Related: Marcus Personal Loans Review


We reviewed LightStream based on 16 data points in the categories of loan details, loan costs, eligibility and accessibility, customer experience and the application process. We rated LightStream based on the weighting assigned to each category:

  • Loan cost: 35%
  • Loan details: 20%
  • Eligibility and accessibility: 20%
  • Customer experience: 15%
  • Application process: 10%

Within each category, we also considered several characteristics, including available loan amounts, repayment terms, APR ranges and applicable fees. We also looked at credit score requirements, whether the lender accepts co-signers or joint applications and the geographic availability of the lender. Finally, we evaluated LightStream’s support tools, borrower perks and features that simplify the borrowing process—like prequalification options and mobile apps.


Is it hard to get approved by LightStream? ›

To qualify for a LightStream loan, applicants must have a minimum FICO credit score of at least 660. What's more, a strong applicant will have several years of credit history, including multiple account types—credit cards, auto loans and mortgage debt, for example—as demonstrated by their credit profile.

How long does it take to get a response from LightStream? ›

LightStream may approve you the same day you apply or within 1 business day. After your application is approved and you accept the offer, it takes 1 business day to receive your funds, which LightStream will send to you by electronic bank transfer.

How fast is LightStream approval? ›

Fast approval and funding: Borrowers may receive funds as soon as the same day they apply with LightStream, which is great for time-sensitive needs.

Does LightStream ask for proof of income? ›

Limited debt: Your revolving debt, including credit card debt, must be at a manageable level. Proof of income: Your source of income must be stable and you must make enough to show you can repay the loan. A strong payment history: You should have no delinquencies on your credit record.

What FICO does LightStream use? ›

Which credit agency do you use to get my credit score? LightStream pulls a hard inquiry from TransUnion or Equifax.

What income do you need for LightStream? ›

LightStream does not specify the minimum income requirement for its personal loans. LightStream offers loans ranging from $5,000 to $100,000. With LightStream, you pay back your loan within 24 and 84 months.

Can you talk to someone at LightStream? ›

24/7 Technical Support: 574-278-7121, option 2.

Does LightStream require collateral? ›

LightStream offers a fast, easy online application without requiring any paperwork; you also do not need collateral to borrow funds. Instead, your credit profile and whole financial track record are assessed to decide if you qualify for financing.

Is LightStream same day funding? ›

We can fund your loan as soon as the day you apply.

You're in control of the loan process with LightStream. You choose your funding date, and you can even have funds deposited into your account as soon as the same day you apply.

Does LightStream give cash? ›

If you're approved for a LightStream loan, you may be able to receive your loan funds the same business day you apply. LightStream deposits the money directly into your bank account, so you can make an offer on a car as a “cash” buyer.

Does LightStream hold your title? ›

Like maximum flexibility: LightStream has no vehicle restrictions on make, model or mileage. Lightstream auto loans are unsecured, meaning the car is not used as collateral, and LightStream does not hold the title of the car while the loan is being paid off.

How long does a LightStream approval last? ›

LightStream personal loans at a glance
Minimum credit score660.
FeesNo fees.
Loan amount$5,000 to $100,000.
Repayment terms2 to 7 years. 12 years on home improvement loans.
Time to fund after approval1 business day.
2 more rows
Aug 11, 2022

What loans Cannot verify income? ›

They're often called bank statement loans. NIVA. No-income, verified-assets (NIVA) loans are similar to SIVA loans, except income is not added to the application. Instead, lenders may review assets such as retirement and savings accounts.

How do lenders verify my income? ›

Mortgage lenders usually verify employment by contacting the borrower's employer directly and reviewing recent income documentation. These documents can include an employment verification letter, a recent pay stub, or anything else to prove an employment history and confirm income.

What is an excellent credit score for LightStream? ›

LightStream Pros

If you have good credit according to LightStream requirements (credit score above 660, a mix of credit types, other assets on hand, few or no delinquent payments, and a steady income), LightStream interest rates could be hard to beat.

What is the easiest and fastest loan to get? ›

The easiest loans to get approved for are payday loans, car title loans, pawnshop loans and personal loans with no credit check. These types of loans offer quick funding and have minimal requirements, so they're available to people with bad credit.

What loan can I get instantly? ›

Loans that are referred to as “instant loans” are typically a cash advance or a payday loan. This type of loan usually comes with very high interest rates, so it should be a last resort. APR for short term loans can range from 100% to 900%. In comparison, a credit card typically charges an APR of 20% to 25%.

Does LightStream lower credit score? ›

LightStream loans offer an online-only experience, and the company accepts individual or joint applications. There's no ability to prequalify, and you should expect a hard credit inquiry when you apply, which can lower your credit scores by a few points.

Is Truist and LightStream the same? ›

LightStream is part of Truist, and we believe that good-credit customers deserve a fast and easy loan process, incredible service and excellent rates.

Are LightStream loans fixed rate? ›

APR range: LightStream interest rates range from 5.99% - 22.49% and are fixed, not variable.

Does LightStream require down payment? ›

The unsecured LightStream loan has no fees or prepayment penalties. No down payment is required, and there are also no appraisals or home equity requirements.

Will LightStream loans call? ›

LightStream will only call you directly if there are questions about an application you've submitted. LightStream will not contact you to ask for or confirm your personal information until after you have submitted your loan application. LightStream does not conduct telemarketing outreach.

How often do loans not get approved? ›

You may be wondering how often underwriters denies loans? According to the mortgage data firm, about 8% of mortgage applications are denied, though denial rates vary by location and loan type. For example, FHA loans have different requirements that may make getting the loan easier than other loan types.

What disqualifies you from getting a loan? ›

The most common reasons for rejection include a low credit score or bad credit history, a high debt-to-income ratio, unstable employment history, too low of income for the desired loan amount, or missing important information or paperwork within your application.

What if I lie about income on loan? ›

While it can be tempting to misrepresent your income, employment or assets to seem more appealing to lenders, you could face serious consequences. Not only can you lose your loan funds, which means you never see them or have to repay what you borrowed immediately, you can also face prison sentences.

Can I get personal loan without proof of income? ›

You can get a personal loan with no income verification, but you may have to contend with higher interest rates, the pledging of collateral, and a more stringent process. On the other hand, self-employed individuals might want to consider alternative forms of financing that do not require a fair or good credit rating.

How long does it take to get a LightStream auto loan? ›

You can receive funding as soon as the day that you apply for a loan with LightStream, and the funds are deposited directly into your bank account. Loan terms up to 84 months. You can apply for repayment terms from 24 months to 84 months, which gives you more flexibility in finding an affordable monthly payment.

Does LightStream application affect credit? ›

LightStream loans offer an online-only experience, and the company accepts individual or joint applications. There's no ability to prequalify, and you should expect a hard credit inquiry when you apply, which can lower your credit scores by a few points.


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