Citibank Personal Loan Review
What is Citibank?
Citibank is one of the country’s oldest banks, with a history that dates back to 1811. Today, Citibank’s banking services extend to businesses and individuals around the world. It has physical locations in nearly 100 countries, works with about 90% of global Fortune 500 companies and as of the third quarter of 2018, is the world’s largest credit card issuer.
Citibank offers personal loans, one of its many banking products, to existing customers in the U.S. While many banks and lenders offer personal loans, Citibank’s offering could be especially enticing for current customers as you can earn extra Citi ThankYou® Rewards points for taking out a loan.
Citibank personal loan highlights
- Fixed interest rate: Some personal loans have a variable interest rate, but Citibank’s personal loan has a fixed interest rate. As a result, your rate and monthly payment will stay the same throughout the lifetime of the loan.
- No prepayment fees: Don’t pay any fees if you want to repay your Citibank personal loan early.
- Earn Citi ThankYou® Rewards: You could earn up to 125 Citi ThankYou® Rewards points each month if you have direct deposit and bill pay on an eligible Citibank account.
- Must be a current Citibank customer: To be eligible for a personal loan, you need to have had a Citibank checking, savings, money market or certificate of deposit account (CD) with a positive balance for at least three months.
Citibank Personal Loan Details
|Terms||Fees and Penalties|
|● Term lengths: 12 to 60 months
● APR range: 7.99% – 17.99%
● Loan amounts: $2,000 – $50,000
● Time to funding: A check will be mailed to you within 5 business days once you’re approved.
● Credit check: A soft pull to check your rate.
|● Origination fee: Not specified
● Prepayment fee: No
● Late payment fee: Not specified, however if you default on your loan, your APR may increase by 2%.
Citibank product details
The Citibank personal loan is an unsecured personal loan. That means you don’t need to offer anything as collateral and risk losing your personal property if you find yourself unable to make loan payments.
The APR range that Citibank advertised at the time of writing was for a $10,000 loan with a 36-month, or shorter, term. To qualify, you also have to have excellent credit and sign up for autopay from a Citibank deposit account, which can get you a lower rate.
If you take out a different loan amount, choose a longer term or don’t have excellent credit, your APR may be higher than the advertised range. Additionally, Citibank may increase the APR by 2% if your loan is in default (goes unpaid).
On the other hand, you may be able to get a 0.25% interest rate discount if you are a Citigold® or Citi Priority customer, which requires a combined average monthly balance of $200,000 or $50,000, respectively, in linked deposit, retirement and investment accounts.
You can also earn 50 or 125 Citi ThankYou® Rewards points a month if you have an eligible Citibank account and use direct deposit and bill pay, or make one debit or credit card transaction.
- Minimum credit score: Not specified.
- Minimum credit history: Not specified, but the lowest advertised rate requires excellent credit.
- Maximum debt-to-income ratio: Not specified, but you must make at least $10,500 a year.
In addition to the credit and income requirements, you’ll have to have a Citibank checking, savings, money market or certificate of deposit account (CD) with a positive balance for at least three months. You also can’t have taken out a different Citibank personal loan within the last six months, although you can have up to two personal loans at a time.
You may also need to be at least 18 years old, a U.S. resident and have a valid address.
Applying for a personal loan from Citibank
You can apply for a Citibank personal loan over the phone or at a bank branch. Or, you can apply online if you’re applying for $30,000 or less and you’ve already created an online account. If you’re not a Citibank bank customer, you may also be able to apply online if you received a loan offer with an invitation number.
The online loan application could start with a soft credit check pre-approval, which will let you see your estimated rates without hurting your credit. To complete an application, you may need to agree to a hard pull, which might lower your credit scores a little.
If your application is approved and you agree to the loan offer, Citibank will mail you a check for your loan amount within five business days.
Pros and Cons of a Citibank Personal Loan
|● Fixed interest rate. You can plan ahead knowing that your interest rate and monthly payments won’t change.
● No prepayment penalty. Other lenders may charge a penalty fee for paying off the loan early.
● $2,000 minimum loan. A low minimum loan amount can help you avoid borrowing more money than you actually need.
|● Limited to existing customers. You need to be a Citibank customer for at least three months before you can qualify.
● Your loan gets mailed to you. If you’re looking for a quick-and-easy process, many other lenders can directly deposit your personal loan into your bank account.
● Relatively high interest for those with excellent credit. The lowest advertised rate isn’t as low as what some other lenders offer.
Who’s the best fit for a Citibank personal loan?
A Citibank personal loan may be a good option for a current Citibank customer who wants to borrow $2,000 to $50,000 to pay off other higher-rate loans or pay for a large, one-time purchase. If you’re a Citigold® or Citi Priority customer, then the interest rate discount might make the loan a little more enticing.
However, other lenders may offer a lower interest rate to borrowers with excellent credit. If the other lender charges an origination fee, you may have to figure out the loans’ APRs and how long you’re going to take to pay off the loan (if there’s a chance you’ll pay it off early) to determine which option is actually cheapest. If not, then simply look at the rates and see which is best.
Whether or not you have excellent credit, compare your loan options to find the best option available. The fees, loan amounts, payment terms and eligibility requirements can all change from one lender to the next, and there’s no overall best option for every borrower. If you’re struggling to qualify for a personal loan, you may want to look into credit repair before applying.
Alternative personal loan options
LightStream is the online loan division of SunTrust Bank. The lender focuses on borrowers with good to excellent credit, and offers one of the lowest interest rates and longest terms to those who qualify. There aren’t any origination or prepayment fees, and LightStream personal loan could be a good, low-cost option if you’ve got great credit.
Marcus by Goldman Sachs
With Marcus by Goldman Sachs®, you can borrow $3,500 to $40,000 personal loans with a 5.99% to 28.99% APR (For New York residents, rates range from 5.99% to 24.99% APR). The loans’ terms range from 36 to 72 months. You can complete the process online, or mail in a paper application if you’d prefer. Either way, you won’t have to pay any origination, prepayment or late fees.
A Quicken Loans Family Company, RocketLoans offers online loans with a quick pre-approval and same-day funding for some borrowers. Check your rate without impacting your credit, and $2,000 to $45,000 with a 36 or 60-month term. RocketLoans does charge a 1.00% - 6.00% origination fee, which could make this a more expensive option than some other loans.