How To Get a Personal Loan With Navy Federal
9 MIN READ
Published December 12, 2023 | Updated January 11, 2024
The Navy Federal Credit Union (NFCU) offers personal loans to members who need to borrow small amounts for home improvement, big purchases, or debt consolidation. Since the credit union serves military members, you’ll need to have a membership to apply for a loan.
With low annual percentage rates (APRs), flexible repayment terms, and no origination or prepayment fees, Navy Federal personal loans are a good option to consider for members.
How It Works
Navy Federal Credit Union’s personal loans are available to all members of the credit union who qualify. You can join as a member if you and/or a family member are serving or have served in the military. Department of Defense personnel are also eligible.
Fixed loan amounts and personal lines of credit vary from $250 to $50,000, and the APR range is quite competitive at 7.49%-18%. Interest rates vary based on loan terms and an applicant’s credit profile and FICO score. The loans also do not have a prepayment or origination fee.
Due to the low maximum interest rate, a Navy Federal debt consolidation loan is a good option for borrowers with high-interest credit cards or personal loan debt.
The credit union doesn’t state any minimum income or credit score requirements for their loans, but they do consider the member’s banking history and their current standing in the credit union to determine eligibility.
Navy Federal personal loans are a good option if you need an unsecured loan for a wide range of purposes, with a flexible term length and loan amount. You can also get a secured personal loan at a lower interest rate using your NFCU certificate of deposit or savings account(s) as collateral.
“If you’re concerned about letting your debt rise above a level you’re comfortable with, it’s best to apply for a fixed-term personal loan because you won’t be tempted to take additional cash from your credit line once you pay off or pay down your original loan,” explains Brad Reichert, founder and managing director of Reichert Asset Management LLC.
Personal Loan Rates
Navy Federal personal loans come with a tiered interest rate structure. A tiered interest rate structure refers to the method by which an interest rate is assigned to a borrower's loan by a lender. The interest rate designated by the lender depends largely on the borrower's credit; those borrowers with strong credit receive a lower interest rate than borrowers with poor to fair credit.
When borrowing from NFCU, you can expect interest rates for fixed-term loans up to 36 months to range from 8.99% to 18%. Loans with terms of 37 to 60 months have an interest rate of 15.29%-18%.
However, if you’re borrowing via a personal loan that is secured by a new or existing savings account you own at NFCU, the interest rate is the current savings account rate plus 2%-3%. For loans secured by a certificate of deposit (a CD), you can expect to pay an interest rate of your current CD rate plus 2%.
Use the Navy Federal loan calculator to estimate how much you’ll pay each month based on the amount you borrow, interest rate, and repayment term.
Fees and Repayment Terms
Navy Federal doesn’t charge any origination fees or prepayment penalties. However, if you don’t pay by your due date, you’ll have to pay a late fee of $29 each time you’re late.
Here are the repayment terms available for each type of personal loan:
- Navy Federal debt consolidation loans and personal loans: 36-60 months
- Home improvement loans: 36-180 months
- Savings Account secured loans: Up to 180 months
- Certificate of Deposit secured loans: Up to 60 months
You can use a personal loan from Navy Federal to finance home improvements or repairs, to pay for unexpected expenses that may come up, or to consolidate your other debts. The credit union offers several different types of loans to choose from.
Personal Expense Loan
If you need an unsecured loan for personal expenses, you can borrow $250 to $50,000 from Navy Federal. These loans can be used for things like vacations, major purchases, expenses involved with relocating, auto repairs, or unplanned expenses like medical bills or home repairs.
Navy Federal offers repayment terms on unsecured loans of up to 60 months. Interest rates are primarily based on your credit profile but also on the loan term you choose, so you can expect to pay an APR of 8.99%-18% for terms up to 36 months and 15.29%-18% for terms of 37 to 60 months.
Home Improvement Loan
The minimum loan amount you can borrow from Navy Federal for home improvements is $25,000 for terms of 61-84 months. For terms of 85-180 months, the minimum loan amount is $30,000.
Home improvement loans are a great way to finance repairs, install energy efficiency and smart home upgrades, and, of course, general remodeling and maintenance. Because home improvement loans are typically unsecured, you won’t require any collateral to get approved.
Here are some of the recent tiered interest rates (APRs) for home improvement loans from Navy Federal:
- Up to 36 months: 8.99%-18%
- 37-60 months: 15.29%-18%
- 61-180 months: 15.79%-18%
Debt Consolidation Loan
If you have multiple credit cards, personal loans, and other unsecured debt, you can simplify your finances with a debt consolidation loan from Navy Federal. You can borrow with loan amounts from $250 to $50,000 to pay off your existing debts, so you’ll only have one affordable monthly payment.
The interest rates are quite competitive at APRs of 8.99%-18% if you’re borrowing for up to 36 months. If your loan term is 37-60 months, the APR is 15.29%-18%.
Savings Secured Loan
If you have a savings account at Navy Federal, you can get a loan at a lower interest rate for personal expenses without dipping into your savings. Your savings will continue earning dividends and will be freely available for you to use once again after you finish repaying your loan.
Navy Federal offers extended terms of up to 180 months on some secured loans. For terms up to 60 months, you’ll pay an APR of your current savings account rate plus 2%. For terms of 61-180 months, the APR is your current savings account rate plus 3%.
Certificate of Deposit-Secured Loan
A certificate-secured loan is another option for low-interest borrowing. You can borrow 100% of the certificate of deposit’s principal balance for terms of up to 60 months. The loan term cannot exceed the term of the certificate, meaning if your CD’s term to maturity is 48 months, the repayment term on your CD-secured loan cannot be longer than 48 months.
The interest rate you’ll pay for the certificate-secured loan is the certificate’s fixed rate Annual Percentage Yield (APY) plus 2% for up to 60 months.
Navy Federal, like all other financial institutions, has its own underwriting requirements. In order to get a Navy Federal personal loan, you must be a member. You can only become a credit union member if you’re an active-duty military member, veteran, Department of Defense personnel, retired service member, or a family member with military ties.
Credit Score Requirements
There’s no specific minimum credit score requirement for getting a personal loan at Navy Federal. However, you may have a better chance of getting approval if you have a higher credit score.
Another option is to apply with a co-signer to improve your chances of qualifying and getting favorable terms.
Navy Federal also doesn’t disclose any minimum income requirements. However, it does take your ability to repay the loan into consideration. One way it does this is by taking a look at your banking history and your current standing at NFCU. For this reason, it may be beneficial to become a Navy Federal member and establish a positive relationship for maybe 2-3 months before you apply for a loan.
Unless you’re applying for an unsecured personal expense loan, you’ll have to visit your nearest branch to apply in person, as an online application process is only available for personal expense loans. Here’s the step-by-step guide to the loan application process:
- Review the different types of Navy Federal personal loans currently available and determine which one will be right for you.
- Fill out the application online if you’re applying for a personal expense loan. Visit your local branch or call 1-888-842-6328 for any other type of loan.
- Provide documents like your identification (e.g., a driver’s license, passport, or other photo ID), employment and income verification, and proof of residence (such as a utility bill or voter registration card with your name and address on it).
- If you’re applying with a co-signer, provide the same documents for the co-signer.
- Submit your application and wait for a decision. Navy Federal may run a credit check on you to review your other debts and your FICO-based credit score.
- Once you’re approved, sign the loan agreement.
- Since Navy Federal offers same-day funding, you’ll typically receive the money on the same day you apply if you’re approved.
Improve Your Chances of Getting Approved
If you’re a member, getting a Navy Federal personal loan is fairly easy and straightforward. We also recommend following the tips below to improve your chances of getting approved:
- Get a copy of your credit reports before you apply to check your credit scores with each of the three major credit bureaus. This will give you the opportunity to fix any errors and ensure your credit score is good enough for loan approval.
- Use a loan calculator to estimate your monthly payments to ensure you’ll be able to repay the loan comfortably.
- Make sure your accounts with Navy Federal are in good standing.
- Gather relevant documents like your pay stubs, tax returns, identification proof, and proof of residence before you apply.
- Apply with a co-signer if you don’t think your application will be approved due to your income or credit history.
With interest rates capped at 18%, Navy Federal Credit Union personal loans may be a good option for you if you’re unable to secure a lower rate elsewhere.
If you’re using the funds for debt consolidation, carefully review the interest rate you’re paying on your current debts to ensure the rate on your debt consolidation loan is at least a couple of percentage points lower than the average rate on your current debt. This way, you can be assured that you will save some interest as part of the process.
Even if you’re already a member of Navy Federal, we recommend comparing loan options from multiple lenders to secure the lowest possible rate.