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LightStream 2023 Auto loan review, published 2023-01-01 at 00:00:00.

Authored by Rebecca Betterton Written by Auto Loans Reporter

Rebecca Betterton is the auto loans reporter for Bankrate. She specializes in assisting readers with the ways and pitfalls of borrowing money to purchase the car they want.

Edited by Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor

Rhys has been editing and writing for Bankrate since late 2021. They are dedicated to helping readers gain the confidence to take control of their finances through providing precise, well-studied information that breaks down complicated topics into manageable bites.

Advertiser Disclosure Advertiser Disclosure We are an independent, advertising-supported comparison service. Our mission is to help you make better financial choices by offering financial calculators and interactive tools that provide objective and original content. This allows you to conduct research and compare data for free – so that you can make financial decisions with confidence. Bankrate has partnerships with issuers including, but not limited to American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, Citi and Discover. How We Make Money The products that are featured on this site are from companies that compensate us. This compensation can affect the way and where products appear on this site, including, for example, the sequence in which they be listed within the categories of listing and other categories, unless prohibited by law for our loans, mortgages,, and other products for home loans. This compensation, however, does have no impact on the information we publish, or the reviews that appear on this website. We do not contain the entire universe of businesses or financial offers that may be available to you.

Reviewer’s disclosures: All reviews are prepared by staff. The opinions expressed in them are only the opinions of the reviewer and have not been evaluated or acknowledged by any advertiser. The information, including rates and fees, presented in the review is correct as of the date that the review was written. Review the information in the upper right hand corner of the page as well as the lender’s website for the most current information.

At a look 4.1 Rating: 4.1 stars out of five

Bankrate Score

Availability Rating: 4.7 stars out of 5

Affordability Rating 4 stars out of 5

Customer Experience Rating: 4.6 five stars of 5

Transparency Rating 3 5 stars.

Compare rates for auto loan rates

The amount of the loan is up to $100,000

Min. credit score Not specified

APR as low as 8.99%

Funds are available as soon as the day you make your application

LightStream features Consider these benefits and disadvantages of an auto loan using LightStream before applying.

PROS Good user experience

Rapid funding timeline

Loan terms up to 84 months

CONS Unsecured loan

The minimum loan amount

No prequalification

LightStream offers an online lender that provides unsecured auto loans for used and new automobile purchases. They also offer auto loan refinancing as well as lease buyouts. All options can be funded the same day you apply. Since the LightStream auto loans are not secured and not secured by your vehicle, it is not used as collateral — but it does offer affordable rates and a wide range in repayment alternatives.

Do you qualify? LightStream does not provide specific eligibility requirements for its loans. However, they do seek out borrowers with a few years of credit history, a credit history that includes a range of account types, a good payment history, an established ability to save and stable income. The lowest rates go to borrowers with an excellent credit score, which is generally defined as a FICO score of 740 or higher. What we like and what we don’t like Here are some advantages and disadvantages associated with LightStream automobile loans. What we like about the LightStream user experience. LightStream is entirely online, and its site is simple and easy to navigate. The application is fast and can be completed using a phone, tablet or PC. Rapid funding timeline. You could receive your funds as soon as the day you make an application for a loan using LightStream and the funds are deposited directly into the account of your bank account. The loan terms can be as long as 84 months. You can apply for repayment terms between 24 and 84 months, which gives you the flexibility to find the most affordable monthly installment. We don’t like the Unsecured loan. LightStream’s auto loan essentially functions as an unsecured personal loan and doesn’t use your vehicle as collateral. This could result in greater interest rates than you’d get from an lender that offers traditional auto loans. Minimum requirements are high. loan amount. LightStream is much more expensive in terms of loan minimums than those of its rivals. The minimum required to refinance or finance the purchase of a new or used vehicle is $5,500, so LightStream may not be a viable option when you’re trying to purchase a used car at a bargain price or you’re refinancing a few thousand dollars to pay off your current auto loan. No prequalification. If you apply with LightStream the application will be subject to an examination of your credit. In contrast to other lenders, there’s no way to verify the rate or eligibility prior to applying. How to contact LightStream LightStream offers customer assistance through an online form however it does not have a phone number for general queries. Hours of operation are Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET and Saturday 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. ET. Details about your application or loan can be found 24/7 on the LightStream website or in the application.

Loan types for auto loan types offered LightStream provides auto loans for both used and new automobiles. They also offer loans to refinance and also for the purchase of your lease.

New and used automobile loans

Loan quick facts Amounts: $5,000 to $100,000 Terms 24-84 months APR: from 8.99 per cent

Although LightStream’s automobile loans are technically unsecured however, they offer decently competitive rates. You might be able to negotiate a lower cost with a bank but LightStream may still be the best option for most people than dealer financing. With terms as long as 84 months, you should be able to locate a payment plan that works for your budget. Refinance

The loan amount is From $5,000 to $100,000 Terms of the loan: 24 to 84 month APR: Starting at 9.49%

LightStream’s refinance program has a lower starting amount than a lot of banksthis is why it’s a good choice when you’re nearing the expiration date the term of your existing loan. However, the beginning APR is high. Therefore, if you purchased your car at a time when the rates were less, then you might want to hold off on refinancing until you have a longer payment term. In that scenario the LightStream 84-month period might be a good option however it could result in more in interest. Lease purchase

Loan quick facts Amounts: $5,000 to $100,000 Terms 24-84 months APR: from 9.49 percent

LightStream is one of the most attractive choices in the market for buying out your lease, particularly since many banks and other online lenders don’t provide it. As with its brand new as well as used car loans and refinancing programs, you will have flexible loan terms and the ability to finance a substantial amount, which can be handy in the event that you have leased an expensive model. How do you apply for the loan with LightStream The application for a loan through LightStream on its website. You may need to provide the necessary documents to complete your application. If you submit your application within the hours of business you may be contacted, and then you can you can sign your loan documents electronically and get your loan within the same day.

The required information for your application is whether you’re applying alone or with a co-applicant principal loan purpose Your desired loan quantity and time Name, Social Security number as well as birth date Home address and current housing status Contact number and email address driver’s license number and financial information

LightStream FAQs

Can I buy a car from a private party? Yes. LightStream offers financing for private party purchases that have the same terms and conditions as used vehicle loans at dealerships.

What other financing options is available through LightStream offer? LightStream also offers loans for classic cars and motorcycles, boat loans, loans for RV loans along with financing options for aircrafts.

What rates do Bankrate charge? LightStream

Overall score




LightStream has a high minimum loan amount, but allows you to choose from a wide range of repayment conditions.



Although LightStream has low interest rates, the company does not disclose the requirements for eligibility.

Customer experience


LightStream stands out for its fast funding timeline However, it does not provide customer support via phone, and its support hours are limited.



Fees are posted on its website, but LightStream does not provide prequalification.

Methodology Bankrate considers 18 data points when evaluating auto loan lenders. Acceptance criteria, whether rates and fees are available and the APR range all affect lender scores. These scores are split in four different categories. Availability: Loan amounts, repayment options, dealership requirements, and availability in the state all play a role in this section. Affordability: This section contains APR ranges, acceptance criteria, fees and discounts. Customer experience: How long you have to shop, the customer service accessibility, and whether there’s autopay or an app available are all covered in this section. Transparency: This category is responsible for the availability of fees and rates along with the availability of prequalification.

Disclaimer The reviews are written by staff. The opinions expressed in the review are only the opinions of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information such as rates and charges, presented in the review is correct up to the date of the review. Check the data in the upper right hand corner of the page, and the lender’s website to find the most recent details.

Written by

Rebecca Betterton

Auto Loans Reporter

Rebecca Betterton is the auto loans reporter for Bankrate. She specializes in assisting readers in navigating the ins and outs of securely borrowing money to purchase the car they want.

Edited by Rhys Subitch Edited by Auto loans editor

Rhys has been writing and editing for Bankrate from late 2021. They are committed to helping readers gain the confidence to manage their finances through providing clear, well-researched data that break complex topics into manageable bites.

Auto loans editor



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