Fiona Review 2020: Find the Personal Loan That’s Right for YouPersonal Loans
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- Basics: Fiona is a lending marketplace designed to help consumers find financial products such as personal and student refi loans from various industry providers in one place.
- Pros: Fiona makes it easy to see a number of loan offers from its lending partners. This makes it a good tool for comparison shopping. Plus, it's free to use the site, and your initial loan inquiry will not affect your credit score.
- Cons: Your initial offers aren't prequalified, and your results will be limited to Fiona's lending partners. You might be able to find better terms elsewhere.
If you’re in the market for a personal loan, it can be tricky to know where to start. After all, how do you compare not only different lenders but also varying terms? How do you know which loan is the right one for you?
Thanks to a new platform called Fiona, this process is now much simpler. This personal finance search engine will match you with the products that best suit you, while also providing real-time offers and rates.
In this Fiona review, we’ll take a look at what this platform can do for you and why it might be your first stop the next time you’re ready to open a new account.
What Is Fiona?
First, let’s settle what Fiona is not: a lender. Created by Even Financial, Fiona is actually powered by its leading financial services search engine. Even Financial designed Fiona to help consumers find financial products from various industry providers (Fiona’s partners, many top financial institutions) all in one easy place.
Through Fiona, consumers can find the right services for them, whether they’re searching for personal loans, savings accounts, or credit cards. Need to refinance your student loans? Fiona will match you with the right lender for that, too.
In this Fiona review, we’ll focus on personal loans.
Fiona is free for consumers to use. There’s no cost to browse offers, submit loan requests, or even compare products available to you. Again, using Fiona does NOT impact your credit score.
If you visit a lender’s website or apply for/open a new account, that lender will likely compensate Fiona. There’s no cost to you.
Note that if you take out a loan through one of the partner lenders on the Fiona platform, that lender may charge you an origination fee. This fee is imposed on the total loan amount and will be taken out of your disbursement. So if a lender charges you a $500 origination fee on a $10,000 loan, you’ll actually receive $9,500.
While Fiona’s website is sure to include disclaimers about origination fees, these are charged by the lender (not Fiona) and are pretty common in the world of loans. While most student loan refinances are origination fee-free, finding them charged on personal loans is not at all uncommon.
Origination fees charged by Fiona platform lenders can range from 1-6% of the total loan amount.
Because Fiona is a lending marketplace, rather than a direct lender, it doesn’t determine APRs. These — along with repayment terms — are set by Fiona’s partner lenders.
Currently, you can find rates on Fiona as low as 3.84%.
Fiona Loan Options
As we mentioned above, Fiona’s platform lists not only personal loans, but also student refinance loans, credit cards, and savings accounts. It’s an efficient way to comparison shop.
Currently, Fiona’s lending partners include the following:
- Best Egg
Fiona Application Process
You can view the offers available to you on Fiona without creating an account. Simply visit the site and be matched with the product that best suits your needs.
By providing some basic information, you’ll get personalized loan offers from top providers. Depending on the products you’re matched with, Fiona may also ask you to answer an additional question or two.
For instance, after I chose to get matched with a personal loan, Fiona prompted me to declare what I planned to do with that loan. My options included consolidating debt, covering educational expenses, taking a vacation, and more.
Once you enter your information, you’ll be matched up with a variety of offers available to you. This list will include an estimated interest rate, loan term, and an estimated monthly payment amount. You can also sort these results by rate, loan term, partner, or payment.
At this point in the process, you haven’t entered any of your personal information. So Fiona hasn’t yet submitted a loan request on your behalf. These initial offers are generic and aimed at consumers who match the criteria you indicated. Based on your credit score, debt ratio, and other personal factors, you may or may not actually be approved for them in the end.
That said, if you find a result you like in the initial search list, you can easily click through on that lender’s offer. This will allow you to submit a loan request through Fiona with that lender and begin the process of opening an account.
To complete this step, you’ll need to confirm the loan amount, your estimated credit score, and the purpose of the loan) in addition to your:
- Full name
- Email address
- Date of birth
- Residential status (own or rent your home)
- Highest level of education
- Phone number
- Employment status
- Annual income and pay frequency
- Social Security number
As you can see, you’ll need to provide considerably more information for step two of the process. Once you do, you’ll be able to see customized offers from trusted lenders, all of which are pre-approved.
Because Fiona’s lending partners — not Fiona itself — set the terms for the available loans, it’s practically impossible to judge the marketplace on flexibility.
However, in general, its lending partners are trusted names known for offering flexible loan terms. Of course, before agreeing to any loan terms, you’ll need to compare offers and read the fine print to make sure the loan you choose is in your best interest.
Fiona Customer Service
If you need assistance, you can contact Fiona via phone Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Central Time or by email.
You can also use the Fiona website’s contact form to submit an inquiry. Fiona’s customer service team states that it responds to all emails with at least an acknowledgment of its receipt within 24 to 48 hours.
Alternatively, if you’re in the Big Apple, you can always drop in at the Fiona headquarters. They’re located on the sixth floor of 43 West 24th Street in New York, New York.
Fiona Referral Program
There’s no referral program for Fiona. However, check for offers from its individual lending partners.
Fiona Review: Pros and Cons
There are plenty of reasons why you may want to utilize a search engine like Fiona the next time you’re looking for a financial product or service. Fiona can make the entire process faster and easier for you… but there are a few things to keep in mind along the way.
- View multiple products and offers in one place. Through Fiona, you can easily and quickly compare various credit cards, loans, and even savings accounts without needing to visit multiple websites or enter your information with each company.
- Offers are summarized very well. You’re able to indicate what type of products and services you’re looking for to really narrow down the search. You’re also able to compare credit cards and savings accounts easily since their individual features are listed on the search results page.
- Receive initial offers in mere seconds. Since Fiona doesn’t require much information in order to provide your initial list of offers, you can start browsing in about 30 seconds.
- Free to use. There’s absolutely no cost to you if you want to view the offers and products available from Fiona’s partners.
- You don’t need to create an account. You don’t need to create an account or even provide information such as your email or name to view your first results.
- Initial offers aren’t pre-qualified. You’ll still need to click through and submit a request to the specific provider you choose — and you may or may not get approved for the same rate/terms that you saw initially.
- Credit card products are very limited. Fiona is a fairly new platform, so its partnerships seem to still be works in progress. Even after selecting “all card purposes,” a credit score of 720+, and “all card networks,” I was given only three credit card products from which to choose.
- Limited student loan refinance partners. Regardless of the student loan refi criteria I chose, I was given only two options: LendKey and SoFi. These are both reputable and well-known companies in the educational refi space, but I would have liked to see more options available to me.
Alternatives to Fiona
There are several other financial aggregator platforms out there today, but Fiona is different in that it’s a search engine providing personalized personal loan offers. Others may be a good alternative to your Fiona search if you want to compare offers from even more providers, with only one additional search.
For example, Credible can help you find not only student loan refinancing options, but also credit cards, personal loans, and even mortgage options. Some of the lenders available on Credible are not currently on Fiona (and vice versa), so using both platforms would be a great way to really shop around.
Want to learn more? Check out our list of 25 favorite personal loan companies and aggregator platforms.
Fiona Review: The Bottom Line
If you’re in the market for a personal loan, credit card, or savings account, or if you’re looking to refinance your student loans, shopping around is imperative. By comparing all of the products and services available to you, you can ensure that you’ll receive the lowest rates, best features, and most affordable fees possible.
By getting matched through a search engine like Fiona, you’re able to browse and compare multiple offers in seconds. This can save you valuable time and effort in your search… plus, using the platform is free. You have nothing to lose!
Stephanie Colestock is a personal finance expert and writer who enjoys teaching people how to be financially independent and confident about their money choices, regardless of obstacles in their path (such as the crippling student loan debt she once held). Stephanie graduated from Baylor University, and is currently working toward her CFP certification. Her work can be seen on sites such as Forbes, Dough Roller, and Johnny Jet, among many others.