Discover Personal Loan Review

Learn About Discover’s Personal Loan Rates and More

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Discover Personal Loans

Courtesy of Discover

overall rating
3.7

While Discover doesn’t offer the lowest APR available for borrowers with the best credit, its personal loans have other standout features, like long repayment terms, getting your money quickly, and no origination fee. But keep in mind that if you don’t qualify on your own—most borrowers have a credit score of 670 or higher—you’ll need to look elsewhere, because Discover doesn’t accept joint applications or co-signers for personal loans. Luckily, you can see if you prequalify before completing a full application, so you’ll know if you’re eligible without triggering a hard credit check.

  • Product Specifications
  • Pros and Cons
  • Fees
  • Company Overview
Product Specifications
  • APR Range 6.99% to 24.99%
  • Recommended Minimum Credit Score 670
  • Loan Amounts $2,500 to $35,000
  • Loan Terms Three to seven years
Pros and Cons
Pros
  • No origination fees

  • Flexible repayment terms

  • Prequalification available

  • Fast payments: often same-day funding

Cons
  • No joint applications or co-signers

  • Maximum loan amount is $35,000

  • Might need good credit to qualify

Fees
  • Late fee: $39

No origination, application, or prepayment fees.

Company Overview

While Discover is best known for credit card products, it also offers student loans, personal loans, home loans, and banking services like checking accounts and certificates of deposit. In 2019, Discover originated $95.9 billion in banking loans overall, including $8 billion in personal loans.

Discover Personal Loans

Courtesy of Discover

overall rating
3.7

Pros of Discover Loans

  • No origination fee: Some personal loan lenders charge an origination fee, or a fee to process your loan. Discover doesn’t charge this fee.
  • Flexible repayment terms: You can have loan repayment terms as long as seven years. You can also change your due date or even return your loan within 30 days without paying interest.
  • Prequalification available: If you want to see whether you’d qualify for a Discover personal loan without applying first—and without dinging your credit score—you can fill out an online prequalification form. It’ll also tell you the interest rate you’re likely to be approved for.
  • Fast payment: If your loan is approved, you can get the funds in as soon as one business day.

Cons of Discover Loans

  • No joint application or co-signer available: If you want a Discover personal loan, you’ll need to qualify based on your own credit score and financial details, since it doesn’t accept co-signers, co-borrowers, or joint applications.
  • Maximum loan amount is $35,000: If you need a larger loan, you’ll need to look elsewhere.
  • Might need good credit to qualify: The majority of Discover personal loan borrowers have a credit score of 670 or higher. The higher your credit score, the more likely you are to get approved.

Discover Personal Loan Rates and Terms

For borrowers with excellent credit scores, interest rates could be as low as 6.99% APR. But if you don’t have stellar credit, you could pay upwards of 24.99% APR. While that’s high, Discover still may be attractive to borrowers with lower credit scores; some lenders charge rates as much as 10 percentage points higher for those with the lowest credit. However, its minimum APR is higher than those of some other lenders, so if you’ve got amazing credit, you may want to explore other options before settling on a Discover personal loan.

Loan terms vary based on how much you borrow and what you’d like your monthly payment to be. Terms range from three to seven years. This is good news for borrowers who take out larger loans or who need lower monthly payments to make sure they pay on time.

You can use a Discover personal loan to pay for debt consolidation, home improvements, a wedding, medical expenses, or just about anything else you need.

However, you can’t use a Discover personal loan to pay for post-secondary education or to pay off a secured loan.

How Much Can You Borrow With Discover?

You can borrow as much as $35,000 with a Discover personal loan. The minimum amount to borrow is $2,500. How much you get approved for is based on your credit score and your overall creditworthiness, which includes your income and other factors you report in the application.

This minimum loan amount might be too much for you. For instance, you may only need $500 or $1,000 to tide you over for a little bit. Before settling on Discover, compare other lenders’ minimum loan amounts to make sure you don’t borrow more than you need.

Discover Personal Loan Fees

Among the best features of Discover personal loans are their lack of fees. Discover doesn’t charge origination, application, or prepayment fees. But it does charge a late payment fee of $39 if the bank does not receive your payment on time—which is high among personal loan lenders.

How to Get a Personal Loan From Discover

If you’re interested in applying for a Discover personal loan, you’ll need to meet the minimum qualifications first. You must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Make at least $25,000 in annual household income

You can apply online or over the phone at 1-866-248-1255. During the application, you will need to provide some personal information—this is standard across lenders. Federal law requires banks to verify account holder identity with your name, Social Security number, and more. You will also need to provide financial details relevant to your loan, such as your employment status, banking information, and more.

After you’ve submitted your application, a loan representative may contact you to verify some details. Discover provides three ways for applicants to deliver copies of supporting documents: A secure upload server, a fax number, and a U.S. postal mail address.

Final Verdict

Discover offers personal loans with decent fixed interest rates and no fees as long as you pay on time. It’s a great personal loan choice for borrowers with good credit. There’s a quick prequalification option and a fast approval process, and you could get your funds as soon as the next business day.

But Discover personal loans aren’t for everyone. If you don’t qualify on your own, you may not be eligible for a personal loan. The lack of co-signer availability means that if your credit score and history aren’t very good, you can’t use someone else to vouch for your creditworthiness. Those on the higher end of fair credit may qualify, but that doesn’t mean you’ll get the best interest rate available. If you have lower than a 670 credit score, you might not be eligible for a Discover personal loan and may want to find a bad or fair credit lender instead.

Methodology

We look at 40 data points from dozens of financial institutions to evaluate lenders for our personal loan reviews. Because a loan’s APR can dramatically impact the total cost you pay, we weight that feature the heaviest. But since a great APR usually requires at least a good credit score, we also give points to lenders who may have a higher potential APR but offer loans to people with less-than-perfect credit scores. 

Along those lines, we favor lenders who allow you to see if you prequalify before applying for a loan, so you won’t harm your credit score just by applying. Origination, prepayment, and late fees all get counted in our assessment. And lastly, we deduct points from the ratings of lenders with restricted access—for instance, those who require you to first have another type of account with them or to join a nonprofit organization.

Article Sources

The Balance requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy .
  1. Discover. "Personal Loans." Accessed Oct. 20, 2020.

  2. Discover. "2019 Annual Report," Page 94. Accessed Oct. 20, 2020.

  3. Discover. "Personal Loans from Discover," see fine print. Accessed Oct. 20, 2020. 

  4. Discover. "Personal Loans FAQ: How much can I apply for?" Accessed Oct. 20, 2020.

  5. Discover. "Personal Loans FAQ: What if my payment arrives late?" Accessed Oct. 20, 2020.

  6. Federal Financial Institutions Council. "Bank Secrecy Act / Anti-Money Laundering Examination Manual," page 47. Accessed Oct. 20, 2020.