Could Your Social Media Profile Hurt Your Chances of Getting a Loan?

Lenders looking to social media to gather information about you.

May 10, 2014 at 1:46PM

The fine line between your personal life and your credit is being crossed as some lenders are looking at social media as one of the methods to determine the credibility of applicants.

Personal lenders such as Lenddo and the peer-to-peer network Lending Club gather information on people from social media to apply in conjunction with that person's loan application to determine their trustworthiness. While Lenddo factors in a person's habits and activities on social media to determine if he or she is worthy of a loan, Lending Club only uses the information to help fight against fraud.

Determining factors
Lenddo will look at how long your social media account has been active, the number of friends and followers you have, and most importantly, whether or not any of your friends on social media have an account open with Lenddo.

If you do have a friend who uses Lenddo, the company will check your friend's account history. Depending on whether they are in good standing or not could either help or hurt your chance at being accepted for a loan. If your friend has poor history, it will be factored in negatively. On the other hand, if a buddy is in good standing with a loan, it can help improve your chances of being approved.

Jeff Stewart, a co-founder and CEO of Lendoo stated, "It turns out humans are really good at knowing who is trustworthy and reliable in their community. What's new is that we're now able to measure through massive computing power."

In today's digital world, the majority of people have at least one social media account open. As reported by Statistic Brain, 58 percent of people polled in America use social media, with 98 percent of adults between the ages of 18 to 24 using social media. They also reported that there are approximately a total of 1.4 billion users on Facebook worldwide.

Steps to present the best you on social media
Clean up your social media accounts if you are serious about taking out a personal loan. Avoid profile pictures that contain anything that may appear offensive or inappropriate.

Also, untag yourself from any photos you feel could jeopardize your credibility. If you still have pictures of your keg stands from college, it's time to either delete them or to change the privacy settings so that the pictures are only viewable among friends.

Minimal activity on social media could prevent you from getting a small business loan
Certain lenders can also view social media accounts for small businesses, as social media activity can help them determine your loan worthiness based on things like consumer reviews (on sites like Yelp) on your social media accounts.

The only problem with social media is that people have the ability to skew a lender's perception of a business. Small businesses who want to appear credible to a lender can create fake accounts on Facebook, Yelp and other social media platforms as a way to give the illusion they generate business and are received positively by their customers. Therefore, a company may be able to trick a lender into appearing as more credible for a business loan.

What small businesses can do to improve their social media profiles
Just like an employer can take a peek at your social media accounts, lenders (outside of Lenddo and Lending Club) may also check you out on Facebook or Twitter. Whether or not a lender factors social media into the approval or denial process, it's a good idea to look as polished as possible on your social media.

Small businesses who want to improve their image should consider the following tips before applying for a loan from a lender.

  • Create a social media account on all relevant social media platforms (if you have not created any already).
  • Post quality pictures of the entire business.
  • Address any concerns or reviews on popular websites where people can critique your business.
  • Respond to customer comments.
  • Try to be active on your social media accounts.

This article Could Your Social Media Profile Hurt Your Chances of Getting a Loan? originally appeared on My Bank Tracker.

Are you ready to profit from this $14.4 trillion revolution?
Let's face it, every investor wants to get in on revolutionary ideas before they hit it big. Like buying PC-maker Dell in the late 1980s, before the consumer computing boom. Or purchasing stock in e-commerce pioneer in the late 1990s, when it was nothing more than an upstart online bookstore. The problem is, most investors don't understand the key to investing in hyper-growth markets. The real trick is to find a small-cap "pure-play" and then watch as it grows in EXPLOSIVE lockstep with its industry. Our expert team of equity analysts has identified one stock that's poised to produce rocket-ship returns with the next $14.4 TRILLION industry. Click here to get the full story in this eye-opening report.

The Motley Fool recommends Facebook and Yelp. The Motley Fool owns shares of Facebook. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

1 Key Step to Get Rich

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better. Whether that’s helping people overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we can help.

Feb 1, 2016 at 4:54PM

To be perfectly clear, this is not a get-rich action that my Foolish colleagues and I came up with. But we wouldn't argue with the approach.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich" rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

"The Motley Fool aims to build a strong investment community, which it does by providing a variety of resources: the website, books, a newspaper column, a radio [show], and [newsletters]," wrote (the clearly insightful and talented) money reporter Kathleen Elkins. "This site has something for every type of investor, from basic lessons for beginners to investing commentary on mutual funds, stock sectors, and value for the more advanced."

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better, so it's nice to receive that kind of recognition. It lets us know we're doing our job.

Whether that's helping the entirely uninitiated overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we want to provide our readers with a boost to the next step on their journey to financial independence.

Articles and beyond

As Business Insider wrote, there are a number of resources available from the Fool for investors of all levels and styles.

In addition to the dozens of free articles we publish every day on our website, I want to highlight two must-see spots in your tour of

For the beginning investor

Investing can seem like a Big Deal to those who have yet to buy their first stock. Many investment professionals try to infuse the conversation with jargon in order to deter individual investors from tackling it on their own (and to justify their often sky-high fees).

But the individual investor can beat the market. The real secret to investing is that it doesn't take tons of money, endless hours, or super-secret formulas that only experts possess.

That's why we created a best-selling guide that walks investors-to-be through everything they need to know to get started. And because we're so dedicated to our mission, we've made that available for free.

If you're just starting out (or want to help out someone who is), go to, drop in your email address, and you'll be able to instantly access the quick-read guide ... for free.

For the listener

Whether it's on the stationary exercise bike or during my daily commute, I spend a lot of time going nowhere. But I've found a way to make that time benefit me.

The Motley Fool offers five podcasts that I refer to as "binge-worthy financial information."

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. It's also featured on several dozen radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable ... and I don't say that simply because the hosts all sit within a Nerf-gun shot of my desk. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers contain timeless advice, so you might want to go back to the beginning with those. The other three take their cues from the market, so you'll want to listen to the most recent first. All are available at

But wait, there's more

The book and the podcasts – both free ... both awesome – also come with an ongoing benefit. If you download the book, or if you enter your email address in the magical box at the podcasts page, you'll get ongoing market coverage sent straight to your inbox.

Investor Insights is valuable and enjoyable coverage of everything from macroeconomic events to investing strategies to our analyst's travels around the world to find the next big thing. Also free.

Get the book. Listen to a podcast. Sign up for Investor Insights. I'm not saying that any of those things will make you rich ... but Business Insider seems to think so.

Compare Brokers