Firstmark Credit Union personal loan review: Fixed rates for members

PLSLR_FIRSTMARKImage: PLSLR_FIRSTMARK

In a Nutshell

Firstmark Credit Union offers personal loans of up to $40,000 with the option to skip up to two payments per year (for a fee) without penalty as long as your loan isn’t delinquent. But you’ll have to qualify for membership.
Editorial Note: Credit Karma receives compensation from third-party advertisers, but that doesn’t affect our editors’ opinions. Our third-party advertisers don’t review, approve or endorse our editorial content. It’s accurate to the best of our knowledge when posted.

Pros

  • Borrowers may skip up to two payments per year (for a fee)
  • No payments for the first 45 days

Cons

  • Must qualify for membership
  • Only available in certain Texas counties

What you need to know about a Firstmark personal loan

Firstmark Credit Union is a not-for-profit cooperative started in 1932 by teachers. Firstmark personal loans are unsecured loans that can be used to pay for a range of expenses, including vacations, car repairs, debt consolidation, home improvement projects and more.

Flexible loan amounts

Firstmark offers personal loans from $500 to $40,000, with repayment terms that range from 12 to 60 months.

That’s helpful if you need a small loan or have a major purchase to make.

Typical interest rates

Personal loan rates at Firstmark Credit Union aren’t the highest around, but they aren’t the lowest either. If you have strong credit, you may be able to qualify for a lower interest rate elsewhere.

Borrower benefits and membership eligibility

Firstmark Credit Union offers several perks for borrowers. If approved for a loan, you don’t have to start making payments for 45 days.

Firstmark also gives you the option to skip a loan payment every six months as long as you’re not delinquent on your loan. But it does charge a $25 fee for the service, and interest will continue to accrue on your loan during the break, which could extend your loan term.

To qualify for membership, you must live, work, go to school, teach or worship in certain counties in Texas.

Who is a Firstmark loan good for?

If you qualify for Firstmark Credit Union membership, taking out a Firstmark loan may be a good way to cover a small or large expense.

A Firstmark personal loan could also be good for consolidating credit card debt as long as you can secure a lower rate on the loan than what you’re currently paying on your credit cards.  

One caveat, though: If you have strong credit, you should shop around elsewhere before going with a Firstmark Credit Union personal loan. That’s because the lowest interest rates available at Firstmark Credit Union are higher than some rates you may be able to qualify for with other lenders.

How to apply for a Firstmark Credit Union personal loan

Firstmark Credit Union has an online application. Firstmark recommends having this information available before you apply.

  • Social Security number
  • Valid ID
  • Requested loan amount
  • Basic info such as birth date and email address

You’ll also have the opportunity to join the credit union if you aren’t already a member.

Even if you’re an existing member of Firstmark Credit Union and considering a loan, it’s always a good idea to shop around with a few other lenders before borrowing. Comparing rates, fees, terms and total costs across several loans can help you choose a personal loan that works for you.

Not sure if Firstmark is right for you? Consider these alternatives.

  • LightStream: This lender is a good option for a competitive rate.
  • Upgrade: Upgrade lets you check potential offers without a hard inquiry.

About the author: Taylor Medine is a freelance writer who’s covered all things personal finance for the past seven years. She enjoys writing financial product reviews and guides on budgeting, saving, repaying debt and building credit. … Read more.