Is It Better to Apply for a Loan In-Person or Online? Everything You Should Be Considering
In our day and age, applying for a loan is easier than ever. You can apply in person or online. Which should you choose? The answer depends on several unique factors, including the type of loan, your personal circumstances, and needs, and more.
If you’re looking into applying for a loan, then you’ll want to make sure you review each of your choices and weigh the pros and cons of both application methods to help you decide what’s best for your situation.
3 Factors to Consider When Deciding Whether to Apply for a Loan In-Person or Online
When trying to determine whether to get a personal loan, auto loan, or some other form of credit lines, you’ll need to consider whether you want to apply in-person at a local financial institution or if you would rather apply online. To make an educated decision, you’ll want to consider these three factors:
Your Current Financial Situation
The first thing you’ll want to consider is your current financial situation. For example, if you are in the process of rebuilding your credit and don’t have any collateral (e.g., a car or home), then it might be better for you to apply with an online lender because most financial institutions will not approve a loan application without some type of collateral.
Your Credit Score
Another component you might want to consider is your current credit score. If your credit score falls between 560 and 660 (low-to-middle range), lenders may require a co-signer on an application for a loan.
That said, if you have a high enough credit rating – generally scores of 720 and above – then you may be able to apply for an online loan without a co-signer
The Level of Convenience During the Application Process
Several factors might influence the decision process when applying in-person versus online. For example, if there are often long lines at your local bank or credit union, it would make more sense to apply online simply for the sake of convenience.
Another factor to consider is the convenience of access. If you have strong internet service at home, apply online and skip the trip to a banking location
Some banks offer an app for use on smartphones or tablets that can be used to complete your application via mobile device. You might want this option if you plan on applying during off-hours or if you travel a lot.
However, if you struggle with reading, writing, or have difficulty understanding even the most basic financial terminology, then it may be worth the trip to your local financial institution. That way, someone on staff can help you fill out the application with ease.
The Pros and Cons of Applying for a Loan Online
If the idea of applying for a loan online seems more appealing to you, then you’ll want to make sure you investigate the pros and cons of this application process as well.
Pros of Online Loan Applications
The number one reason why many consumers decide to apply for a loan online is purely out of convenience. Not only can you apply for a loan at any point in your day (or evening), but you can do so without having to set aside blocks of your day for an in-person appointment.
You might want to consider an online loan application because they are often quicker and simpler than in-person loan appointments. This is because online loan applications don’t always require a credit check, so you’re not subject to the same level of scrutiny as when applying for a loan in person.
Cons of Online Loan Applications
While getting the opportunity to apply online is very convenient, there are several negatives to the process as well.
For instance, one of the most problematic aspects of online loan applications is that there is no opportunity to have the process explained by a representative. That means you may have difficulty understanding the full extent of the loan process.
The Pros and Cons of Applying for a Loan In-Person
If you believe that applying for a loan in person is the best solution for you, then you’ll want to consider both the pros and cons of the process.
Pros of Applying for a Loan In-Person
One of the best reasons to apply for a personal loan in person is the fact that you get to speak with a professional one-on-one and get all your questions answered in a single sitting.
This makes the process easier and ensures that you are confident in your decision and understand all the terms.
Another benefit is that you can get guidance immediately regarding any necessary paperwork or documentation needed for your application. If most of your financial business is done at the physical banking location, then they may be able to pull up all the necessary documents for you. That means less stress trying to find everything you need.
Cons of Applying for a Loan In-Person
Going to a bank or other lender in person may seem more convenient, but there are some cons.
One primary inconvenience is that you will need to take time out of your day to go to the physical location. That means planning to schedule a time to go, considering the traffic you may encounter, and then not knowing exactly how long the application process may be.
Getting an appointment with someone can also be difficult, depending on whom you want to speak with.
Lastly, in-person applications may not be accepted as quickly as online applications because they are more time-consuming and tedious for the lender to process.
Applying for a Personal Loan Requires Decisions
Whether you’re applying for a loan in-person or online, there are pros and cons to consider. The decision is an individual one that should be made after weighing all aspects of each one. If you find yourself with any pressing questions, it’s always best to reach out to a professional so you don’t make any unnecessary mistakes during the actual application process.