LendUp Review: Is It A PayDay Loan Scam or A Better Alternative?

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What is LendUp?

As a direct online lender, Lendup is a payday loan company that provides loans, credit cards and lines of credit to the general public. Apart from lending, the company also provided financial education on responsible borrowing. According to Wikipedia and Crunchbase.com, the California based company was established in 2012 by Jacob Rosenberg and Sasha Orloff. The two acquired equity and debt financing from several investment conglomerates including Google Venture, Caufield & Byers, and Andreessen Horowitz among others.

How Does LendUp Work?


To get a loan, they require your personal information including your email address, income details and social security number. You will also have to verify your income details if need be, by uploading supportive documents during the application process.
Once you sign up for a loan, you will be notified immediately if you are eligible for a loan. It takes a minimum 15 minutes to receive your loan.

LendUp Features

  • You do not require a good credit history to qualify for a Lendup loan. You will work your way up the tier system. Climbing up the ladder depends on your repayment history and the number of their educative courses you complete.
  • Lendup being a direct lender, the company uses proprietary algorithm to determine if you qualify for a loan. This means you get instant feedback about your legibility.
  • Being a Lendup customer, you are given ratings based on their experience with you rather than your credit score. The progressive ratings work as follows
    • Silver – You can borrow up to $250, repay within 30 days and payment should be done all at once
    • Gold – You can borrow up to $500, repay within 60 days and you can make multiple repayments
    • Platinum – You can borrow up to $700, repay within 6 months, and multiple repayments apply
    • Prime – You can borrow up to $1000, repay within 12 months and you can make multiple repayments. Once you reach this level, you are eligible for APRs of as low as 29%. At this level they can report you to major credit bureaus to help improve your credit score.
  • While repaying, you can pay them directly or they can automatically deduct the amount from your bank account.
  • They allow extensions of up to 30 days, under certain conditions. This feature apparently is in line with their ‘’socially responsible lending’’ axiom.

What are the LendUp Rates?

The company’s APRs depend on the amount borrowed, what tier they classify you under, and repayment period. Prime level borrowers also qualify for APRs as low as 29%. For example, a $100 loan repayable within 14 days attracts an APR of 333.71%, meaning you will repay $112.80. If you desire to repay the loan within 30 days, you will repay a total of $116.40. Other fees include a one-time returned check deduction of $15.

What States Can Use LendUp?

At the time of this review, it appears that LendUp works in the following states:  Hawaii, Ohio, New Mexico, Washington, Maine, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Florida, Texas, Wyoming, Alabama, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Mississippi, Oregon, Kansas, California, Missouri, Tennessee, South Carolina and Minnesota.

What We Like About LendUp

We strive to be objective here at MoreRealReviews.com so we're going to show love where it's due. So we've listed some of the things we like about LendUp.com

Strong Financial Backing
Lendup investors include Google Venture and Caufield & Byers.

Some Press Love
The company has also enjoyed some limelight, having been featured on TIME and Wall Street Journal, among other publications.

It's Fast
15 minutes is pretty damn quick to await a loan. This actually means you can apply for a loan in an emergency, I mean a real emergency not Saturday night drunken bender emergency, and actually get it.

Knowing is half the battle
We definitely appreciate that this company tries to educate their customers and incentives this learning with their points program which helps improves your loan rates and amounts. Most payday loan companies do just the opposite and try to keep you in the dark.

LendUp Complaints

Unfortunately the payday loan industry has a bad reputation for good reason. LendUp tries to be different but there are still complaints against Lendup you should be aware of.

Legal Woes

It appears the two co-founders cannot handle the heat from high profile investors. According to a Wikipedia reference about the company, in 2016, the CFSB fined the company for violation of Payday loans laws. Apparently, Lendup claimed to provide customers with the opportunity to improve their credit score. Unfortunately that didn't seem to happen for many people. Let’s hope the $6 million fine was enough to get them back on the noble path they had set it on.

Customer Service Sucks

According to customers all over the web the Lendup customer care unit is terrible. They rarely pick calls. If you decide to contact them by email, you might have to wait more than 2 days to hear anything. Other customers also cited delayed credit report processing.

No BBB Love

Some of you live and die on a BBB rating. If that's you you won't be happy to hear the Better Business Bureau revoked their accreditation, and currently they are rated an F. This might change by the time you read this.

Scammers Impersonations

Apparently there are scammers out there impersonating Lendup. They ask for money upfront to start the lending process which is a dead giveaway. Needless to say it's tarnished their reputation even if they're not part of this scam.

So Is Lendup Legit or Not?

It is somewhat admirable that they approach payday loans differently compared to traditional payday loan companies. You do not require a good credit rating, all you need to do is repay your loans in time and take the online courses to climb up the ladder. It sounds good in theory but the complaints about the company’s service continues to pile up daily. When you also take into considerations that the BBB revoked their rating, there is reason for concern about their ability to effectively resolve issues. And if that was enough Lendup’s reputation with the CFSB also took a hit last year.

When you take all this into consideration. you might want to consider another payday loan service before signing up for Lendup. But that's just our opinion and nothing more.

So would love to hear your experience with Lendup or thoughts about this company. Feel free to leave us a comment below!

LendUp Review
  • Our Overall Rating
  • Support
  • Quality


Lendup is backed by some heavy hitters like Google Ventures. But their customer support sucks and their BBB rating was revoked among other recent issues. So this may not be the best payday loan option for you.

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