How to Get a Loan

Everyone, including you, needs money.

Especially if you’re trying to make a larger purchase or need to pay for something such as a wedding or a cross-country move. But not everyone may have the immediate funds to finance future life events. This is when a personal loan could come in handy.

There are a lot of choices when it comes to selecting a personal loan.

Should you use online lenders or banks, or should you borrow from your family?

Which one has the best options?

Since it’s your money we’re talking about here, it’s important that we get it right. Let’s start from square one.

What are the different kinds of personal loans?

There are loans for many different purposes, but in the world of personal loans, there are two basic types: Secured and unsecured loans.

A secured personal loan is money borrowed from a lender, who uses your personal possessions—known as “collateral” in the loan world—as security for the loan.

Here are a few examples of collateral you could put up for a secured personal loan:


Owned property

Machinery and equipment

Valuables or collectibles

Unsecured personal loans, on the other hand, are a little different. Unlike their secured counterpart, unsecured personal loans are typically granted on the basis of factors such as creditworthiness and ability to pay, and they don’t require you to put up any of your things as collateral to secure the loan. Unsecured personal loans could be a great option if you don’t want to risk losing personal possessions, such as your car or your home.

Where can you get an unsecured personal loan?

You can get an unsecured personal loan from many different lenders, such as banks, credit unions and online lenders.

There are lenders who use online platforms with easy application processes so you don’t even have to leave home, much less change out of your pajamas, to apply for a loan.

If approved, how can you use your personal loan?

Once you have your personal loan, you can spend the funds on anything permitted by the terms of the loan, which could include anything from consolidating debt to fixing your broken sprinkler system.

What is a lender looking for in a borrower?

A lender may consider the criteria below when reviewing your application to determine whether you can pay back your loan:

Credit: A lender may check your credit history to see how you’ve handled your finances in the past

Collateral: If you’re applying for a secured loan, a lender may evaluate what you can actually pledge as collateral

Capacity: A lender may review your current income and living expenses to assess your ability to pay back the loan

In exchange for taking on the risk that a borrower will default on the loan, the lender will typically charge interest to the borrower until the balance due on the loan is paid off.

QUICK FACT: Be sure to make your payments on time each month. Lenders will often charge interest on the additional days for which a personal loan goes unpaid. So mark your calendar or the back of your hand—whatever helps you remember.

Getting a personal loan doesn’t have to be confusing.

Yes, there are many options and many lenders to pick from. But, you should spend the time looking for what personal loan best suits your needs.

Once you find the personal loan that’s best for you, you’re ready to make your purchase.

See how Marcus could help

Show Transcript
Hide Transcript
Sometimes, you have to manage debt, juggling expenses such as credit card expenses and more. Other times, like when you want to finance a kitchen upgrade, for instance, you may be planning for debt. Whether you're managing or planning for debt, it can all be overwhelming. Well, there's a tool that may help. Marcus by Goldman Sachs presents: Personal Loans. What exactly is a Personal Loan? A Personal Loan is usually an unsecured loan, which is a loan granted on factors such as your creditworthiness. Unsecured loans do not require you to put up your possessions as security. Some Personal Loans offer low, fixed interest rates and monthly payments. This means you may be able to avoid the sometimes high interest rates for credit cards and, potentially, their late fees on missed payments. Why would you need a Personal Loan? Personal Loans can be used for a number of reasons. One way they are used is to manage existing debt. Another is to fund future expenses. Are you getting married soon? There's a Personal Loan for special occasions. Did your dog take a liking to your new couch, or are you remodeling your kitchen? There's also a Personal Loan for home improvement. Do you just want to simplify your debt, potentially getting a lower interest rate than on your credit cards? There's a Personal Loan for debt consolidation, too. How do you apply for a Personal Loan? You're watching this online, so you're already in the right place. You can apply for a Personal Loan online, or apply in-person at a bank if that's more your style. So, the next time you're managing existing debt, or planning for a major purchase, ask yourself: 'Can a Personal Loan help with this?' Chances are, it can. Our Personal Loans have fixed monthly payments, fixed interest rates, and no fees. Ever. Learn more about Personal Loans at

This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for individualized professional advice. Articles on this site were commissioned and approved by Marcus by Goldman Sachs®, but may not reflect the institutional opinions of Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., Goldman Sachs Bank USA or any of their affiliates, subsidiaries or divisions.