What's the Most You Can Borrow With a Personal Loan?

If you’re taking out a personal loan and you need it to be a big one, you might be wondering what the maximum amount you can borrow is. Unfortunately, there’s not one simple answer to that question because it depends on a few things, including your personal finances and the lender you pick.

Here’s how to know how much you can borrow when you take out a personal loan.

Which lender are you using?

Some personal loan lenders allow you to borrow up to $100,000. For others, limits are lower — sometimes around $50,000 or even less. So, if you need to borrow a lot, you’ll need to look for a lender willing to give out the amount you require.

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Most lenders publish minimum and maximum loan limits online, so you can see if any particular lender can offer you the full amount of funding you need or if you should look elsewhere.

What does your personal financial situation look like?

Just because a lender may have a maximum loan limit of $50,000 or $100,000 doesn’t mean it will allow you to borrow that much.

Loan providers aren’t in the business of giving money to people they aren’t confident will repay them, so they’ll look at your financial credentials when deciding what amount to allow you to borrow.

Specifically, lenders are going to look at your income relative to your debt. As a general rule of thumb, it’s smart to keep debt payments to below 36% of your income. If your debt-to-income ratio (DTI) is much above that, it will be harder to get a large loan from most lenders.

A good credit score can also make it more likely that a lender will offer you a larger loan. After all, it faces less risk loaning large sums to someone who has a solid track record of paying their bills.

If your financial situation doesn’t qualify you for the loan amount you need, it may be worth thinking about whether anyone can cosign for you. A cosigner is someone with more solid finances (like more income or better credit) who agrees to take responsibility for your debt if you don’t pay.

Cosigners can help you borrow more and often at a better rate, but be aware your debt will show up on their credit report and become their responsibility if you stop paying, so don’t ask someone to do this if you aren’t sure you can pay back your loan.

What can you afford?

Finally, you’ll want to think about what is affordable for you in terms of a monthly payment. Even if a lender is willing to give you a large loan because it thinks you can afford it, that doesn’t necessarily mean paying it back will be easy.

Carefully consider how large of a loan payment can fit in your budget. If you can’t afford to pay what a lender is offering you, then you shouldn’t borrow that much money. Doing so could ruin your credit and leave you facing unpleasant legal action.

To make sure your loan is affordable, try “practicing” payments by figuring out how much your loan will cost each month and paying that amount to yourself into your savings while living on what’s left over. If that’s not a hardship, then your loan is probably affordable.

Now you know that the maximum loan size is $100,000 from some lenders, but you won’t necessarily be able to borrow that much. Get online quotes from the lender of your choosing to see your personal loan limits and make the best borrowing choice.

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