Is OneMain Financial a Good Lender?

Andrew Reyes
An image of the exterior of a OneMain Financial storefront.

OneMain Financial is a financial organization that offers personal loans. They mainly work with clients who have low credit scores and would have a hard time getting a loan at a more traditional bank.

OneMain operates online, but they also have brick-and-mortar locations. They process applications quickly, with approval often coming in 10 minutes or so. However, once you get approved, you will have to visit one of the OneMain Financial branches to finalize the application in person.

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Pros and Cons of OneMain Financial

OneMain Financial offers very specific services. Like every lender, it has a set of advantages and disadvantages. When choosing a lender for a personal loan, you need to understand these pros and cons and decide if OneMain is the best choice for your particular situation.


Here are the advantages of OneMain Financial for people seeking personal loans:

  • OneMain Financial accepts joint loan applications with multiple borrowers applying for a single loan.
  • OneMain Financial also offers secured loans. You can get a loan and a lower rate by offering collateral such as a car, truck, boat, and other personal assets.
  • OneMain Financial is a good option for borrowers with poor credit who need a personal loan. Since OneMain doesn’t have a minimum credit score requirement, virtually anyone can apply. Also, a borrower may opt for a secured loan if they do not qualify for a standard unsecured personal loan.
  • OneMain makes application decisions quickly. Some answers come in a matter of minutes, and most approvals come within the same day.    
  • OneMain Financial offers free credit score access via VantageScore, an acceptable alternative to FICO for consumer credit scores.    
  • OneMain Financial has a rewards and discount program. Clients can earn points and later redeem them for gift cards and merchandise.  


Here are the main disadvantages of borrowing from OneMain Financial:

  • You need to visit a physical branch to complete the loan application process.
  • OneMain Financial’s maximum APR is on the higher end when compared with similar services. You will pay more interest with this lender than with some of its competitors.
  • OneMain Financial charges an origination fee for its loans, so you should factor that in when requesting a loan amount.

OneMain Financial Personal Loan Essentials

There are specific details you should know if you plan to apply for a personal loan at OneMain Financial.

  • Loan amounts at OneMain Financial range from $1,500 to $20,000.
  • Loan terms are from 24 months to 60 months. The amount you can pay every month will be a factor in deciding the term of your loan.
  • Commonly used assets for securing a loan include boats, campers, RVs, motorcycles, trucks, and cars. Having collateral may help you to qualify for a significantly larger loan amount than you would have without collateral.  
  • OneMain Financial charges a fixed interest rate that ranges between 18% and 35.99% APR. The exact APR you get depends on a variety of factors, including credit history, debt to income ratio, collateral amount, and repayment term.
  • Your loan amount has an origination fee built into it. For OneMain customers, this is a flat fee ranging from $30 to $150. It can also be a percentage of the loan amount ranging from 1% to 5%. It is best to account for this origination fee when you request the loan amount. For example, if you borrow $5,000 with an origination fee of 2%, you will only receive $49,00. You will, however, make payments on the full $5,000. Origination fees can vary by location. Because of the Truth in Lending Act, OneMain has to disclose this fee when you get the loan.
  • OneMain Financial charges penalties for late payments and returned payments. The penalty rates vary by state. OneMain Financial does not, however, charge penalties for early loan repayment.    
  • Once you complete the online application, you will need to provide information to a loan officer at a physical location, such as a Social Security number, ID, bank statement, and other financial documents as part of the application process.
  • You may opt into OneMain Financial’s rewards and discount program. As a participant in this program, you can earn points and redeem them for a variety of goodies, including gift cards and merchandise.

OneMain Financial Review

OneMain Financial is an accessible personal loan option, but it is best for a specific type of borrower.

Who Is OneMain Financial for?

OneMain Financial loans are for people who need quick cash but have trouble meeting other lenders’ credit requirements.

OneMain might also be a good option if you’re the type of person who needs a lot of flexibility when it comes to repayment terms. The loan terms are from two years to five years, which is longer than some other lenders. However, you need to keep in mind that the longer the loan term, the more you will have to pay in interest.

OneMain Financial has advantages for many borrowers, but it is certainly not for everyone.

The interest rates can be quite high. If you’re able to get a loan with a lower interest rate from another lender, that is usually a preferable option. Borrowers with good or excellent credit scores will often be able to find better terms with a different lender.

Who borrows from OneMain Financial? People usually take out a personal loan to consolidate their debt, pay for their medical expenses, fund a wedding, pay household bills, make home repairs, or cover expenses related to their motor vehicle.

OneMain Financial stipulates that their loans cannot be for gambling, to buy financial securities, for business purposes, or to cover educational expenses.

How Long Does It Take to Get Approved?

OneMain Financial processes loans very quickly. You can get your decision in less than 10 minutes. Once approved, the funds get deposited into your bank account. OneMain can also issue a check for the loan amount.

The amount of time it takes for your funds to arrive depends on what time you submit your loan application. You may also cause a delay if you do not provide the necessary documents for prequalification. Your funds will not be available after online approval. OneMain requires that all applicants visit one of their branches to complete the process.

How to Apply

First, you will have to apply for the loan online. This part of the process is known as prequalification. Luckily, this part of the application doesn’t affect your credit score.

If you pass the online prequalification process, it doesn’t mean that your loan application is a success. However, it does give you an idea about whether you will be approved or not.

After your online application, you will know what rates and repayment terms to expect when you go to the physical branch to complete the process.

For the prequalification process, you will have to include the following information:

  • The loan amount;
  • The purpose of the loan;
  • Your monthly income;
  • Your employment information;
  • Information about your property and other assets;
  • Bank account information.

Upon completing the online application, you will receive an email with more information. If you get prequalified, you should schedule an appointment with the OneMain lending specialist to finalize the loan.

When you visit the OneMain Financial branch to finalize the loan, you need to bring proof of identity in the form of a driver’s license, state ID, or passport. You also need documents, such as financial statements or tax statements, that prove income and employment status.

If you need a secured loan, you need to bring documentation that proves ownership of the asset you wish to use as collateral.

When you meet the lending specialist face to face, they will do a “hard check” on your credit history. This check could lower your credit score in the short term, especially if you are applying with multiple lenders.

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