RISE is a lender primarily targeting borrowers with poor credit using the motto, “a better way to borrow.”
Sized up to other lending services such as traditional payday loans, RISE typically comes out with lower rates. Some of RISE’s most popular features include flexible loan terms, fast credit approval, rates that decrease over time, credit bureau reporting, and free credit score monitoring.
About the Company
With headquarters in Fort Worth, TX, RISE is an online lender operated by Elevate Credit. Launched in 2013, RISE has over 150,000 accounts surpassing $300 million in total amount borrowed.
As represented in its name, RISE aims to provide Americans the chance to rise above the struggle of living paycheck to paycheck. Featured on BusinessWire, RISE offers responsible lending features not only to meet customer’s immediate financial needs but also to help improve their long-term financial wellness.
Targeting the “new middle class,” RISE’s Credit Score Plus—a program offering free credit monitoring—is supported by TransUnion and reports to Experian. Although more affordable loan alternatives exist, RISE tries to make good on the promise to deliver financial education to customers.
Here you’ll learn:
- What kind of loans RISE services
- How much you can borrow
- Details about rates, terms, and fees
- Qualifications for borrowers
- Quality of customer service
What type of loans does RISE offer?
Although RISE offers three different loan types, they all have similar features. Additionally, each of these loans is suited for specific types of borrowers.
1. Installment Loans
RISE installment loans are a type of personal loan geared toward people who want to avoid the hassle of brick-and-mortar lenders. Functioning the same as traditional loans, RISE installment loans offer a quick and easy application process. RISE’s installment loans also often require less information than traditional banks.
Due to advances in technology and RISE’s commitment to remaining tech-empowered, approval can occur in real-time. Most of the time, RISE installment loans that are approved by 6:00 p.m.. (EST) can be funded in one lump sum the next business day.
For installment loans, RISE offers a “Design Your Loan” feature that allows borrowers to specify their amount to borrow (up to $5,000) and preferred term (up to two years). Then, unlike a traditional payday loan that calls for a lump sum payback, RISE installment loans are paid back in a series of fixed, equal payments. They offer several flexible payment schedules, allowing you to choose due dates that suit your schedule.
As with most installment loans, how you use the funds is up to you. Most RISE customers tend to use the loan to pay off medical bills or unexpected expenses such as home repairs. Others use the funds as a down payment for a car or debt consolidation.
2. Cash Loans
RISE specializes in working with people who haven’t yet established any credit or who have had credit issues in the past. For this reason, RISE’s cash loans are a popular for those in urgent financial situations. Cash loans are short-term personal loans repaid in regularly scheduled payments. A shorter loan term distinguishes these loans from RISE’s installment loans.
Cash loans offer borrowers a variety of choices regarding how to use funds. A few purposes, such as tuition payments, are not permitted.
Since a cash loan is a type of installment loan, borrowers know from the beginning of the loan the exact cost of borrowing, required number of payments, payment amount, and the date the loan term will end.
RISE cash loans start as small as $500 and top out at $5,000. Your minimum and maximum loan amount will depend on the state in which you live as well as your financial situation.
Borrowers report that the standard is to get approved for a much higher amount than needed. The customer must determine whether the offered amount is acceptable for their situation. There is no need to take out the entire approved amount. Furthermore, you can decide to cancel the entire process within the first five days after loan approval.
3. Lines of Credit
A RISE line of credit (LOC) is a type of personal loan that allows you to borrow from a predetermined amount of credit. You only make payments when you withdraw money from the line of credit. Payment amounts and due dates are usually determined upon signing the loan contract.
Some popular uses for LOCs include home renovations, auto repairs, emergencies, and more. LOC interest rates are often lower than those of an installment loan.
RISE offers LOC amounts from $500 to $5,000 with no application fees or fees to keep an unused LOC open. The lender will assess what you can afford and base your interest rate on the assessment.
RISE only serves Kansas and Tennessee with lines of credit, making them a secondary financial product offered by the company.
RISE Personal Loans: Rates and Terms
With RISE personal loans—installment loans, cash loans, and LOCs—you can customize the loan term. Offering variable repayment schedule from 4 to 26 month, RISE caters to those needing flexible options. Most customers extend their loans the full 26 months.
Under RISE’s terms, borrowers are often required to make bi-weekly payments. However, RISE doesn’t penalize customers for paying the loan off early.
After making 48 consecutive on-time payments, borrowers may be notified of refinancing eligibility via email. Not all states or products are eligible for refinancing. Unsurprisingly, lines of credit cannot be refinanced. To be eligible for refinancing, a significant portion of the loan must be paid off with no late or missed payments.
RISE uses your income and credit score to determine loan conditions, including rates. Since RISE is licensed in each state serviced, eligibility may vary from state to state.
While RISE’s standard interest rates are high, ranging from 36% to 299%, they can present a viable alternative to payday lenders, which have a national average interest rate of 322% or higher.
RISE doesn’t charge fees to take out a loan or pay a loan off early. Therefore, there are no application, origination, or prepayment fees.
If you’re unable to make a payment by the due date, you’re encouraged to contact customer support. Otherwise, late fee amounts are not specified. However, RISE does offer payment extensions. In most states, though, you will accumulate missed payments.
Time to Funding
RISE can electronically deposit your money into your checking account the next business day if your loan application is received and approved by 6:00 p.m. (EST). Those who opt for a paper check are instructed to allow 7-10 days for the money to arrive in the mail.
RISE Personal Loan Requirements and Procedures
RISE prides itself on serving the “new middle class.” These Americans have often had credit trouble in the past or lack credit history altogether.
RISE is a state-licensed online lender, and only offers loans in the following states:
- New Mexico
- North Dakota
- South Carolina
As mentioned, RISE lines of credit are only available in Kansas and Tennessee.
Although some loan requirements vary by state, the following are the basics:
- You must be at least 18 years old (19 in Alabama).
- You must have an active and valid checking account (prepaid and savings accounts aren’t accepted).
- You must be employed or have another regular source of income.
- You must have an email address at which you can receive loan information.
- You must live in a state where RISE offers services.
Typical Accepted Credit Scores
To be eligible for a RISE loan or line of credit, 500 is the minimum credit score. However, a “fair” 600 may get you approved for a better loan.
Reviewing your loan options will only call for a soft credit inquiry. A soft credit check only reviews a portion of your overall credit history and won’t impact your score. After submitting a short online application form, you can see what you qualify for and which term options would work best for you.
RISE will also require your checking account information as well as your income information for the pre-application process. As with most lenders, you may also be asked to provide documentation of your employment status.
Formal Application Process
To proceed with the loan application and subsequent approval, RISE will request your Social Security number. They will then perform a hard check on your credit history. A hard credit check displays your full credit history and remains on your credit report for two years. Your credit score may experience a hit from the hard check needed to be approved for a RISE personal loan.
RISE will provide a reason for denial but only after the entire application process has been completed. It’s not uncommon for RISE to ask for more information prior to approval, especially regarding proof of income.
RISE offers a straightforward approach to loan amounts and repayment schedules. Customers aren’t typically surprised by the payment amount, frequency, due dates, or term length.
The most popular payment arrangement follows a bi-weekly (every two weeks) schedule. RISE offers semi-customizable loan terms, so due dates aren’t as regimented as with some other online lenders. Customers can often choose their due dates according to their financial situations.
Acceptable Methods of Payment
Automatic withdrawals occur when you opt to receive your money through electronic deposit (ACH debit). RISE simply withdraws payments from the checking account provided during the application process.
Having two open loans at once isn’t allowed with RISE. Borrowers must wait 1-10 days after paying off the previous loan before they can reapply.
The RISE Customer Experience
RISE offers its customers several tools and resources in addition to traditional customer support.
Toll-free: (866) 580-1226
Automated Services: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
Manned Call Center Hours:
Mon – Fri: 8 a.m. – 11 p.m. EST
Sat – Sun: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. EST
RISE asks that customers allow 24 to 48 hours for a representative to respond to a message. You can also check your account balance or extend a payment 24/7 through RISE’s automated phone system.
Customer Feedback and Reviews
Although RISE has been in business for 5 years and has an A+ customer rating with the Better Business Bureau, this lender is not accredited by them as of this writing.
RISE received 4 out of 5 stars and an 8.9/10 TrustScore on Trustpilot. Of the 2,300 customer reviews on the site, 78% rated RISE as “excellent.”
Reviews of RISE on Trustpilot say:
- The transition was easy and the customer service was excellent
- Quick, easy, and very informative
- RISE improves your credit score
Internal customer reviews stated:
- Able to submit everything needed online using their secure website
- Offered financial tips and tools
- Granted a larger loan than anyone else would
RISE touts their loans as a better way to borrow based on ease, promptness, and supporting tools.
Although they market to a target audience of Americans with difficult credit histories, they aren’t always the best choice for everyone. Carefully exploring all of your financial options is still the best route to take. Nevertheless, here are a handful of RISE pros and cons:
- Reports to both major credit agencies
- Tracks your TransUnion credit score for free
- Possible interest rate reduction with on-time payments
- Offers financial education and resourceful money tools
- High APR (36% – 299%)
Although less expensive than traditional payday loans, borrowers often consider RISE a last option because of high interest rates. RISE serves plenty of people needing fast cash in emergencies, but most financial experts recommend exploring all alternatives before settling on RISE personal loans.