- Some loans are harder to qualify for than others.
- If you need to borrow in the new year, it pays to consider these options in particular.
- Look into personal loans, home equity loans, and home equity lines of credit (HELOCs).
These are all worth exploring if you need to borrow money.
At some point in 2023, you may end up having or wanting to borrow money. If a recession hits, you might lose your job and need some money to keep up with your bills. If your car has seen better days, you may need money to fix it. And if you're tired of staring at your lime green kitchen appliances, you may decide to take out a loan and do some renovations.
But qualifying for a loan isn't a given. There are different criteria lenders use when evaluating loan candidates, and if you're seeking out a really large loan, like a mortgage, you may run into trouble if your credit score isn't that great or you have a lower income.
But some types of loans are generally easier to qualify for than others. Here are three you might have success with in 2023.
1. A personal loan
A personal loan lets you borrow money for any purpose. If your credit score is poor, you might struggle to get approved for a personal loan, since these loans are unsecured. That means they're not tied to a specific asset. But if your credit score is in good shape, you might manage to snag a personal loan at a pretty competitive interest rate, making it an affordable choice.
Keep in mind that there are personal loans out there for borrowers whose credit needs work. But if you take one out, you might get stuck with a higher interest rate than you'd like. That's because lenders perceive borrowers with lower credit scores as bigger risks. And in exchange for that risk, those same lenders want to make sure they're earning enough on interest to make a loan worthwhile.
2. A home equity loan
If you own a home you have equity in, you may find that qualifying for a home equity loan is a breeze. Unlike personal loans, home equity loans are secured -- and they're secured by the homes being borrowed against. What this means is that your lender could technically force the sale of your home if you stop making your loan payments and it needs to recoup the loan costs.
Of course, that's clearly not an ideal situation. The point, however, is that if you have a decent amount of equity in your home, a lender might give you a home equity loan at a competitive interest rate. This might hold true even if your credit score could use a little work, because ultimately, the fact that your home is being used as collateral gives your lender some protection.
3. A HELOC
A HELOC, or home equity line of credit, isn't a loan in the classic sense. But it can function like one.
With a HELOC, you get access to a line of credit you can withdraw from during a specified period of time. Once you take a withdrawal, it's treated like a loan in that you need to pay it back.
Like home equity loans, HELOCs are secured by the homes being borrowed against. You may find that a HELOC is relatively easy to qualify for. Just be aware that while home equity loans and personal loans generally charge fixed interest rates, HELOC interest can be variable. That could make your HELOC more expensive over time.
If you end up needing to borrow money in 2023, a personal loan, home equity loan, or HELOC could be your best option. But no matter which type of loan you take out, do your best to only sign up for payments you can afford to make. Falling behind on any loan could have severe consequences, so it's imperative that you only take on payments that fit into your budget.
Our picks for the best personal loans
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