How to get a $100,000 personal loan

A large loan limits your options, but you can qualify if you meet these requirements. (iStock)

Many financial institutions offer personal loans — or installment loans that provide a lump sum that can be paid back with interest in set monthly installments over a specific time period — that range from $1,000 to $50,000, but some lenders will offer as much as $100,000 to certain borrowers.

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Applying for and obtaining a personal loan of this size requires a higher level of qualification. Here’s everything you need to know.

How do I qualify for a $100,000 personal loan?

To qualify for a $100,000 personal loan, you'll need to prove you're efficient at managing money. Use online marketplace Credible's free online tools to see what kind of loan interest rate you qualify for. Enter the loan amount you're looking for — in this case, $100,000 — to check rates from 4.99 percent annual percentage rate (APR) within minutes without impacting your credit score.

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT PERSONAL LOANS

You can't have bad credit or poor credit history or a recent history of bankruptcy. You'll also need an annual income that shows you can afford the monthly payment in addition to your regular expenses.

Lenders will also want to see a solid debt utilization ratio, which compares how much credit you're currently using to the amount you have available. For example, if you have credit cards with a total limit of $20,000 and your current outstanding balance is $5,000, your debt utilization ratio is 25 percent.

How to apply for a personal loan

Before you apply for a personal loan from a bank, credit union, or online lender, make sure you do your homework. Research the types of competitive rates currently available and what makes the most sense for you.

When you've settled on the perfect vender, make sure you do these three things to prepare for the application.

1. Check your credit score: For a personal loan of this size, you’ll likely need to have a credit score of at least 720. A score of 750 or higher is considered excellent credit (you can work on improving your credit by following these simple steps). If you already know your credit score, then you can find personalized rates today through Credible.

HOW TO INCREASE YOUR CREDIT SCORE FAST

2. Learn vender requirements: Financial institutions may have different criteria for approval, and it’s good to know what they are before you start the application process. You may also need to provide a reason for the loan, which helps the lender assess the risk.

3. Gather the necessary paperwork: There are three documents you'll definitely need.

  • A government-issued identification
  • Proof of income
  • Bank statements

Where to get a $100,000 personal loan

When it comes to finding a lender that will offer an unsecured $100,000 personal loan, your options may be limited. These are some options:

1. Banks and credit unions

Most banks and credit unions don’t offer $100,000 personal loans. If you have an existing relationship with a financial institution, you can reach out and ask. One of the few banks that offer loans this high is Wells Fargo. Citizens and Citi banks and some credit unions might offer personal loans of up to $50,000.

2. Online lenders

Online lenders are often the best place to obtain a large personal loan. These two institutions offer as much as $100,000.

LightStream loan: APR: 3.99 percent to 19.99 percent

SoFi loan: APR: 5.99 percent to 18.72 percent

Compare a LightStream loan vs. a SoFi loan through Credible today.

If you are open to obtaining a loan of less than $100,000, there are many more online lenders you can consider. Compare prequalified personal loan rates from this list of lenders by filling out a single form on Credible.

5 DIFFERENT TYPES OF PERSONAL LOANS YOU SHOULD CONSIDER

Frequently asked questions about personal loans

How do I qualify for low-interest rates on personal loans?

The most popular reason to get a personal loan is debt consolidation, but it can be used for everything from unexpected expenses and home improvements to college tuition. Credible can help compare personal loan companies (and hopefully land you the low rate you're looking for). Credible has compiled a list of some of the top personal loan companies that are likely to ensure customer satisfaction, according to their financial experts.

Comparing competitive loan offers and term lengths can be like comparing apples to oranges. You want to look at a few criteria to select the loan that works best for your situation.

1. Interest The interest rate will likely be the first consideration when you investigate your options. It’s the amount the lender charges you to take out the loan. Rates can vary greatly, and are often based on your credit score, term lengths, and the amount you are borrowing. Saving just one percent on a $100,000 five-year loan could add up to more than $2,000.

You’ll also want to consider the APR. This includes the interest plus any fees you may pay to take out the loan, such as an origination fee.

HOW TO QUALIFY FOR LOW-INTEREST RATES ON PERSONAL LOANS

2. Term lengths

You’ll also want to take a look at the term lengths the lender offers. For personal loans, the term lengths usually range between two and seven years. With a $100,000 loan, you’ll likely choose a term on the longer side, since the monthly payments might not fit your budget otherwise. It’s important to realize, however, that the longer you take to pay back the loan, the more interest you’ll end up paying. Most lenders offer lower interest rates for shorter repayment terms.

3. Monthly payments To protect your credit score, you’ll want to research payment options, and the number of your monthly payments can have a direct impact. Your payment will depend on the length of your loan. A longer-term will result in lower monthly payments. It will also result in ultimately paying a higher amount during repayment.

4. Total cost According to the federal Truth in Lending Act, banks, credit unions, and online lenders must provide you with the total cost of the loan during the application process. This number can help you compare lenders and offers. It will include the total charge for financing, such as interest and fees. It will also break down the principal and interest for all of your payments over the term.

Loan calculators can be useful tools when determining your financial goals. Use Credible’s personal loan calculator to estimate your monthly payments to ensure you're choosing the best repayment term for you.

How can I get a loan after being denied?

In the case that your application is denied, the lender will likely offer a reason, and this information can be helpful for the future.

If your credit score wasn’t high enough, for example, take steps to improve it by avoiding late payments. Also, check that your credit report doesn’t include incorrect information. According to the Federal Trade Commission, one in five people has an error on their credit report. If you find a mistake, disputing it and getting any misinformation removed can improve your credit score.

WHAT TO DO IF YOUR LOAN APPLICATION IS DENIED

Lenders also like borrowers to have a debt utilization ratio of less than 30 percent. This number is the percent of credit you are currently using compared to the total amount available. If you were denied a $100,000 personal loan, you may want to pay down debt to lower your debt utilization ratio.

Finally, you may decide to apply for a smaller loan. Your options for finding lenders will increase, and the requirements may not be as strict.

What personal loan mistakes should I avoid?

Before you sign on the dotted line, carefully read the conditions of the loan. Competitive rates and term lengths vary, so be sure to shop around and know what you’re getting into. And watch out for scams. Check the lender’s reputation as well as customer reviews by visiting the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and Better Business Bureau websites.

Also, know what you’re getting into by asking about any costs or fees that will be assessed with the personal loan beyond its interest rate. Some lenders charge origination fees, which can range from one to eight percent. Others may charge early repayment or late payment fees.

THE BIGGEST MISTAKE TO AVOID WHEN TAKING OUT A PERSONAL LOAN

Large personal loans are possible if you are a qualified borrower. By knowing where to look and what to expect, you increase your chances of being approved and getting the funds you need to meet your personal finance goals.

If you're having difficulty choosing a personal loan, consider reaching out to a financial advisor.