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How Many Personal Loans Can You Have At Once?

Hanna Kielar5-Minute Read
PUBLISHED: November 26, 2021 | UPDATED: March 07, 2023


When applying for a personal loan, you’re sometimes borrowing based on only an estimate of how much you may need. If your calculations are off, you might realize you need more than you borrowed.

Or maybe you have the loan amount you requested but another unplanned expense came up and you suddenly need the money to cover that as well. You may be able to take out one or more additional personal loans to cover these costs, but it’s important to evaluate your financial situation before making this kind of commitment.

Let’s take a close-up look at the approval requirements for multiple personal loans. We’ll also consider some of the risks involved in being responsible for this additional debt.

How Many Personal Loans Can You Take Out At Once?

Most financial institutions limit borrowers to one or two personal loans at a time, although the exact number usually depends on a lender’s specified limitations and how much of the first loan is paid off.

It’s not uncommon for people to need extra funds to cover an unexpected expense. For example, if you borrow $3,000 to remodel your kitchen but halfway through the project discover you need an additional $1,000 to replace an appliance, you might need to apply for a new loan to cover the unanticipated purchase.

All of your loans also don’t need to come from the same lender. If one lender won’t let you apply for a second loan, you could potentially borrow from a different one, as long as your personal finances can support a second monthly payment.

Rocket Loans will only approve borrowers for one personal loan at a time.

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What Are The Requirements For Applying For More Personal Loans?

If your credit score and debt-to-income ratio (DTI) were enough to land you one personal loan, will anything stop you from getting a second?

While the loan application process is still relatively the same, being approved for a second personal loan isn’t always as simple as applying again. Many lenders require that a certain amount of your monthly payments goes toward your existing loan before they’ll consider approving you for another one.

Getting the green light on another personal loan will largely depend on how much you have left to repay on your current loan, because that will factor into your DTI and credit report. If your existing loan is nearly paid off and you don’t have a lot of other debt, you’re more likely to receive approval for one or more additional personal loans.

How To Manage Multiple Personal Loans At Once

Managing two or more personal loans and their repayments can be tricky, but it’s not impossible.

The best way to pay off debt, especially if you have multiple loans, is to target your high-interest repayments first. This can help you save money in the long run by eliminating high-interest charges every month.

Missing a payment or defaulting on a personal loan can also affect your credit score and make it harder to take out future loans, soyou should prioritize those payments if you can afford it. Setting up automatic payments can also be helpful in ensuring you don’t miss any. 

Should You Take Out Multiple Personal Loans At Once?

Certain risks inevitably come with juggling multiple outstanding loans. Having multiple loans can affect you in these ways:

  • It can hurt your credit. With each loan application comes a hard credit inquiry. Every hard inquiry can lower your credit score by up to 10 points. You also risk seriously hurting your credit score if you miss any loan payments or default.
  • You could increase your DTI. Your DTI measures your monthly debt payments against how much money you earn each month, and it’s an important factor in determining your eligibility for a mortgage and other types of loans. A higher DTI can lead to a higher interest rate on any future loans.
  • Your debt can keep building up. Beware of falling into a debt cycle where you keep taking out loans to keep up with your monthly payments. The more money you’re putting toward repayments, the less you’ll have for your bills and other living expenses. If you must borrow another loan just to keep up with those, you can easily fall deeper into the debt hole.

All this being said, if you can qualify for a lower interest rate, have the income to keep up with multiple debt repayments, andabsolutely need the money, another loan may not be a bad idea.

But if you can’t afford to repay multiple outstanding debts, you’ll be better off finding an alternative solution.

Personal Loan Alternatives

Having multiple personal loans won’t work for everyone. Let’s take a look at some other financing options that may be available to you:

  • Home equity loan: As with a personal loan, you can use the funds from a home equity loan for various purposes. The drawback is that you’re borrowing against the equity in your home and a default could cause you to lose your home to foreclosure.
  • HELOC: Similar to a home equity loan, a home equity line of credit (HELOC) allows you to borrow against your home’s equity and repay it as you go. It comes with risks similar to a home equity loan, though – and these include the possibility of losing your home.
  • 0% APR credit card: Some credit card companies offer 0% APR (annual percentage rate) introductory periods when you sign up for a new card. These periods typically last 12 – 18 months, during which you can repay your debt interest-free. However, once the promotional period ends, you can be subject to the higher interest rates typical of most credit cards.
  • Emergency funds: If you’ve built up a healthy emergency fund and can spare the money, it may be simpler to just pull from your savings to cover your expenses. The downside to this, of course, is that you won’t have that money later on if you need it.

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FAQs About Having Multiple Loans Out

If you’re still not sure if multiple personal loans are the right choice for you, learn more from the answers to these frequently asked questions.

Can I apply for multiple loans at once?

While you can have multiple personal loans out at once, you probably won’t be able to apply for them at the same time. That’s because many lenders require that you make a certain number of payments on your initial personal loan before they’ll approve you for additional ones. In other words, you’ll probably have to apply for one loan, get approved and make payments for a few months before applying for a second loan.

Can I get 2 or more loans from the same bank?

This depends on the individual loan provider’s policies. Some lenders allow for multiple outstanding loans, while other lenders don’t permit this. Often, a bank or lender will require you to contribute a certain amount toward your current loan before you can qualify for another. Some institutions, including Rocket Loans, will only approve borrowers for one personal loan at a time.

How long should I wait before applying for another loan?

Again, this can depend on your bank or lender’s policies. Many lenders require waiting at least 3 – 12 months (meaning you’ll make 3 – 12 monthly payments toward the loan) before you may apply for another.

Is taking out multiple personal loans bad?

Having multiple personal loans out isn’t inherently bad unless you have trouble making on-time payments. Missed payments or a default can seriously hurt your credit score. More loans can also mean a higher DTI for you, potentially affecting your rates on future loans.

The trickiest part of juggling multiple loans can be remembering what payments are due and when. Debt consolidation can simplify this because it leaves you with only one monthly payment to worry about.

Final Thoughts

Unexpected expenses are just that – unexpected. You could get a personal loan, only to realize you need another for new expensesor because you didn’t borrow enough the first time. If you’re sure you could qualify for a low rate again and won’t have trouble making payments, you could apply for multiple loans. Just be mindful of the risks and any stipulations your lender might have on issuing you an additional loan.

If you think a personal loan can help you consolidate debt, apply online today with Rocket Loans and see what rates you may qualify for.

Hanna Kielar

Hanna Kielar is a Section Editor for Rocket Auto℠, RocketHQ℠, and Rocket Loans® with a focus on personal finance, automotive, and personal loans. She has a B.A. in Professional Writing from Michigan State University.