In order to produce the podcast and keep content up free for you, I work with partners so this post may contain affiliate links. Please read my full disclosure for more info.
One goal that couples have when they want to build their finances is getting rid of their debt. High-interest ones, like credit cards (whose interest rates can be around 20-25%), can especially drain you.
Using a debt snowball while lowering your interest rate on those debts can have a huge impact and peer to peer lending can be a practical way for you to reach that goal.
What is Peer to Peer Lending?
At its core, peer to peer lending is about people directly lending to other. It is a form of crowdfunding, but instead of money for a business, it's for an individual.
With current rates ranging from 6.4% (A grade)-16.2% (C/D grade), there's a good chance that you can have more of your debt snowball is going more towards the principle. This can significantly cut down on the time it takes to get rid debt.
Another benefit is that these loans are at a fixed rate, allowing you to budget accordingly and not worry about rates skyrocketing.
How Peer to Peer Lending Works
Having a peer to peer to loan doesn't mean you'll just be handed over money. Like bank loans, borrowers must apply and their finances should justify the loan they requesting.
Unlike a bank, getting a P2P loan is a fairly straightforward and quick process (here's a review from Simon about his LendingClub loan).
- Submit an application: You give your general information and finances along with the loan amount you're seeking.
- Look at terms: You may be given a couple options on the rates and loan length. The longer you carry the loan the higher the rate. Run the numbers again and choose the best terms for your situation
- Provide additional documentation: You will most likely be required to send in bank statements, taxes, and pay stubs. You'll also be asked to verify that your bank account is correct with a small transaction.
- Results: If approved, the money is deposited into your bank account. If you're rejected you'll receive an explanation so you can improve your numbers.
The entire process can take about 5-7 business days, fairly quickly when you're looking to consolidate.
Thoughts on Peer to Peer Loans
I’d love to hear from you – have you ever used peer to peer lending sites like Prosper or Lending Club? How did it go for you?
If you don't have debt, but you like the idea of peer to peer loans, you may want into being an investor. Investing in peer to peer loans can be a wonderful way to earn a return on your money and help others.