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LendingTree Review – Taking The Hassle Away From Loan Shopping

By Sally Aquire

As you can probably tell from the name, LendingTree deals with loans. More specifically, it acts as a convenient way for consumers to find loan options. I’ve had some personal experiences using LendingTree and want to give you some insight into the service.

Both personal and commercial loans can be taken out through the website. LendingTree doesn’t deal with loan requests directly. Instead, it gathers together your information (both personal and financial) and passes it over to member banks, who will then send you their rates from which you can compare and choose. This makes things a lot easier for you if you’re looking for a loan since you don’t have to spend a boatload of time shopping around to compare quotes.

Just head to the site, fill in the details, and wait for offers to come your way. It’s fairly quick and easy, but I still want to delve into the advantages and disadvantages of the service so you are fully informed.

Advantages

There is a wide choice of lenders to pick from. LendingTree is affiliated with many lenders, some of which are big names. There is no guarantee that you’ll be able to find loan offers that match exactly what you’re looking for, but the wide range of options means that there’s a good chance that something will tick the right boxes for you.

There are no upfront fees. You don’t have to put up cash just to use the service. Searching for loans is free but lenders may ask for application fees, processing fees, or closing costs once you have officially accepted a loan offer.

Access to their resources is free. The LendingTree website features free resources such as articles and calculators to help you make sense of the loan process and make things run more smoothly.

People with poor credit can still apply. Using LendingTree is not dependent on having impressive credit behind you. LendingTree specifically states that even individuals with bad credit can apply for loans, although they do point out that there is no guarantee that lenders will make offers.

Disadvantages

There may be limits on some loans. There are restrictions on some loans that may make them unsuitable for you. For example, you may need to be borrowing a minimum amount to qualify for a particular loan offer.

The loan offers aren’t always competitive. When loan offers come through, they won’t necessarily be what you were hoping for. At first, I assumed that this was due to the specific loan that I was looking for, but it seems that this has been the case for a lot of other users. My credit score is good, but this didn’t open the door to more competitive interest rates. This made me wonder if the offers are actually standard across the board and not dependent on the information that you’re providing beforehand. But ideally, you should have enough offers coming in that you can choose a pretty competitive and affordable option. And again, you can always negotiate until you are satisfied (no obligation to accept).

How It Works

1. Make your loan request
You need to select the type of loan that you want to search for and complete an online request form, which takes around 10 to 15 minutes. If you need a helping hand, there are calculators that you can use to help you determine realistic figures for repayments. For those who prefer not to give personal or financial details online, there is the option of calling LendingTree and completing the request process over the phone instead.

2. Wait for lenders to get in touch
Once you’ve submitted your loan request, your details are sent to prospective lenders. If they want to send you offers, contact comes in the form of an email. To help you out, LendingTree will send you an email once they have received word from a lender that they wish to make you a loan offer.

3. Take your pick from the loan offers
Assuming that you get some offers sent to you, you’re in a position to choose between them. LendingTree allocates the lender a “Lender Score” that is determined by user reviews. This is scored out of five.

4. Accept any loan offers that look appealing and feel free to negotiate
If you choose to accept a loan offer, you’ll be sent a pre-approval letter. You’re not obliged to accept an offer if none suit your needs. In their FAQs section, LendingTree recommends that you try to negotiate with lenders to land better deals if the first offer is not as competitive as you had hoped.

Overall Verdict

If you don’t have the time, inclination, or necessary knowledge to use price comparison websites to find loan quotes, LendingTree is a quality option. Because it’s free, you’re not losing any money if your loan request doesn’t turn up any viable options. Just be mindful that it will post credit inquiries on your credit report. Also, since loan officers are contacting you, make sure you check them out and the products they are offering. Just because they are part of LendingTree doesn’t mean that they have the right loan product for you. Always do your homework!

Sally Aquire
Sally is a UK-based freelance writer. As well as personal finance, she also writes on health & beauty and lifestyle topics. When she's not writing, she enjoys reading, shopping, hanging out with friends and generally making the most of her downtime!

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  • Kelly

    Obviously this writer never actually refinanced through Lending Tree. I have done dozens of refinances and/or purchasing of property and decided to try Lending Tree because I kept hearing so much great stuff about them, and it was one of the worst decisions I have ever made.

    They dropped the ball two times because an employee left and we fell through the cracks resulting in us losing out on a lower interest rate, and one they wouldn’t honor even though they admitted fault. They don’t call you back, respond to emails, when I went to a supervisor, I just got pushed into this customer service loop that put me back with my rep, who is the one I am having problems with.

    They owe me a refund, and I have been trying to get it back for the last 5 months and still have not been able to get it back.

    Save your time, your money, your sanity and go with someone else.

  • Simon Simon

    Lending Tree does not provide good services. When I applied for a loan online, they rejected the info I entered, saying “Please enter a valid first/last name combination”. Excuse me! I know how to spell my name, OK?

    Then I clicked on “Live Chat” and got this: “Thank you for contacting LendingTree. Unfortunately, there are no agents currently available to assist you. Our chat hours of operation are 8:00 am – 7:30 pm M-F, EST. We look forward to assisting you soon!”

    Hmm, the clock says 10:43 am, Thursday.

    Bye bye, lousy Lending Tree.

  • Anonymous

    Lending tree absolutely SUCKS. They’ll tell you you’re approved, steal your $400 like they do to everyone else, then lie and say they never said that. I have emails proving everything I just said.

    • mike

      LendingTree is a free service, not a direct lender. They don’t accept any consumer payments.

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