Borrow Against Ethereum With The Best ETH Loan Rates

Live Ethereum loan rates for March 4, 2024:
Published: October 23, 2023   |   Last Updated: December 19, 2023
Written By:
George Hristov
George Hristov
Contributor
Edited By:
Shannon Ullman
Shannon Ullman
Managing Editor

Key Takeaways

  • You can borrow USD fiat or stablecoins by using your ETH as collateral.
  • Crypto borrowing is a great way to get liquidity without paying capital gains tax.
  • There are a variety of lending platforms with various ETH loan rates – we cover the best.

A useful feature of blockchain finance is getting to borrow against your crypto assets. Specifically, you can use your ETH balance as collateral to borrow USD or any other fiat (or stablecoin) and use those funds as you see fit.

Crypto borrowing is also a great way to capture liquidity from the appreciation of your ETH without having to pay capital gains tax. To take advantage of this, simply use your ETH tokens as collateral to take out a fiat loan and then spend those funds, rather than selling your ETH and incurring capital gains tax.

How Do Ethereum Loans Work?

Ethereum loans work by using your ETH tokens as collateral to borrow fiat like USD, stablecoins, or other cryptocurrencies in exchange. This is in contrast to a traditional loan, where your credit score and other factors determine your loan amount. Ethereum loans, unlike traditional loans, are “overcollateralized,” — meaning they use deposited collateral to determine what the loan amount will be.

As an example: If you are looking to borrow $10,000 by using your ETH as collateral for a loan, you should be ready to deposit anywhere between $14,000 and $40,000 of ETH in order to receive the loan. Once your collateral is deposited to the lending platform, your loan funds will be released with no further questions or checks. This makes the lending process easy, quick, and available to anyone who can post the required collateral.

Once you receive an Ethereum loan, you can use the cash for any purpose you would like. This is another departure from the traditional lending model — you do not have to declare what you will be using your loan funds for, nor do you have to disclose any information regarding your loan activity.

Top 3 Ethereum Loan Platforms For March 2024

Crypto Accepted For CollateralOrigination FeesInterest RatesMinimum Provided LoansMaximum Provided LoansStandout Feature
NexoETH BTC MATIC BNB & more0%0% – 13.9%$50$2,000,0000% APR loans for Platinum tier NEXO holders
Arch LendingETH BTC AAVE AVAX BCH LINK LTC MATIC SOL UNI WBTC
+ Equity shares from one of 33 approved private companies
Liquidation fee of 2%12%Depends on Location NoneArch Lending puts security and trust first, storing your collateral with cold storage providers
YouHolderETH BTC SOL UNI & more0%3% – 8%$100$1,000,000+Issue loans with up to 90% LTV

Nexo

nexo borrow against eth

Nexo is one of the biggest crypto lenders currently in the space. They offer competitive interest rates, a wide range of assets you can borrow, and even their platform token — NEXO — that can be used to get APRs as low as 0%.

All Nexo crypto loans are credit line loans, so you only pay interest on the amount you use.


Borrowing With Nexo

  • APRs as low as 0%
  • Credit line loan facility that only charges interest on the funds you actually use
  • Over 40 supported loan currencies
Crypto Accepted For CollateralOrigination FeesInterest RatesMinimum Provided LoansMaximum Provided LoansStandout Feature
NexoETH BTC MATIC BNB & more0%0% – 13.9%$50$2,000,0000% APR loans for Platinum tier NEXO holders

Arch Lending

arch lending ETH loan

Arch offers world-class financial products for holders of cryptocurrencies and private shares in unicorn startups under a single destination, starting with the most flexible and seamless loan product on the market.

Borrowing With Arch Lending

  • Startup Equity-Backed Loans
  • Custom repayment schedules
  • Borrow up to $2 million
Crypto Accepted For CollateralOrigination FeesInterest RatesMinimum Provided LoansMaximum Provided LoansStandout Feature
Arch LendingETH BTC AAVE AVAX BCH LINK LTC MATIC SOL UNI WBTC
+ Equity shares from one of 33 approved private companies
Liquidation fee of 2%12%Depends on Location NoneArch Lending puts security and trust first, storing your collateral with cold storage providers

YouHodler

youhodler borrow against eth

YouHodler provides crypto loans with LTVs that start at 50% and go as high as 90%. The platform’s loan terms are up to 364 days, which is less than some other platforms, but YouHodler supports over 50 collateral assets and lends out many fiat currencies directly rather than through stablecoins.

YouHolder’s loans start at as little as $100.


Borrowing With YouHodler

  • Take out loans on the higher end of the LTV range — going as high as 90%
  • Borrow fiat currencies rather than stablecoins
  • Take out small loans with minimums as low as $100
Crypto Accepted For CollateralOrigination FeesInterest RatesMinimum Provided LoansMaximum Provided LoansStandout Feature
YouHolderETH BTC SOL UNI & more0%3% – 8%$100$1,000,000+Issue loans with up to 90% LTV

Tax Advantages

For many traders, the biggest benefit of Ethereum loans is getting to offset their capital gains liabilities. Normally if your ETH appreciates significantly in price, you have made money on paper, however, in order to realize this gain, you must actually sell your ETH. This incurs a taxable event, making the appreciation of your ETH tokens subject to a capital gains tax.

ETH loans can be used to bypass this taxable event. Here’s how it works: Let’s say you have $50,000 of ETH that doubles during a bull run to now be worth $100,000. If you sell your ETH — whether for fiat, a stablecoin, or another trade — you will be liable for capital gains tax on the $50,000 in appreciation. What you can do instead is to use your ETH tokens as collateral for a crypto loan. Since loans are not taxed, you get to realize the full value of the $100,000 without having to give any of it away to taxes.

You will still be charged the loan fees, which may include administrative fees like loan origination and will definitely include an interest charge, however, these expenses are usually significantly less than what you would pay in taxes.

What Do I Need To Get An Ethereum Loan?

Ethereum loans are available to anyone who deposits the required collateral. Your loan amount will be decided in large part by the value of your collateral, so this is really the crucial factor in securing an ETH loan.

Once you have your collateral ready, you will need to pick a lending platform and also familiarize yourself with the loan terminology. Below we cover several of the most crucial lending terms:

  • LTV
  • Interest-only, interest & principal, and credit line loans
  • Margin Calls

What Is Loan-To-Value (LTV), And How Does It Affect Loan Rates?

Your loan’s loan-to-value (LTV) is the relationship between the amount you borrow and the value of your deposited collateral. The point of your collateral is to protect the lender in case you cannot make your loan payments and default on your obligation. If the value of your collateral assets gets dangerously close to the amount you borrowed, lenders may automatically liquidate your collateral to cover your loan.

Lenders use LTV as a measure of how healthy your loan is and how likely it is that they will have to liquidate your collateral. Loan-to-value itself is measured as a ratio of the loan amount to the value of the collateral. To get your LTV, divide these two numbers together.

  • For example, if I borrow $25,000 using $50,000 of ETH as collateral, my LTV is 50% since $25,000 is 50% of $50,000. If on the next day, however, the ETH market crashes and my deposited collateral is only worth $40,000, my loan LTV goes up. 25,000 divided by 40,000 shows that my new loan LTV is 62.5%.

The higher your loan-to-value climbs — usually through market volatility that lowers the value of your collateral — the more likely a lender is to liquidate your collateral. These liquidations normally start when a loan LTV is in the 80% – 90% range.

Interest-Only Loans Vs. Interest & Principal Vs. Credit Line: How Do They Compare?

Just like traditional loans, ETH loans charge an interest amount. This is where the lender makes the bulk of their money. ETH loans differ, however, in their interest rate options. With traditional loans, you are responsible for paying off a flat monthly fee that includes the principal + interest amount, while with crypto loans, you can choose between several options for repayment:

  • Interest-Only: With interest-only loans, your monthly payments require you to just pay the accrued interest. You don’t have to worry about the principal of the loan until your last payment — which is when the entirety of your loan principal and any outstanding interest all come due in one lump sum. Interest-only loans are a suitable option if you want to keep your monthly payment low, but you end up paying more in interest in the long run.
  • Interest & Principal: These loans work very similarly to traditional loans. You have a loan principal and interest amount that together get amortized (evenly divided) over the term of your loan into equal monthly payments that pay down both the interest accrued and the principal itself. These loans normally end up more cost-effective than interest-only loans, however, they require larger monthly payments.
  • Credit Line: Some ETH lenders have begun offering credit line solutions to borrowers. These, unlike regular Ethereum loans, give you the equivalent of a “credit line” with a specified limit that can be used as you see fit, and you only pay interest on the amount that you use.

Margin Calls

Before you take out an ETH loan, one of the most important pieces of terminology to know is the “margin call.”

A margin call occurs if your loan’s LTV gets close to the liquidation range (usually 80%-90%). The margin call itself is when a lender requests for a borrower to either pay down some of their loan amount or to add more collateral in order to bring their loan LTV down.

Margin calls are extremely important to understand since they are the only warning step that your loan’s LTV is getting too high before your lender resorts to selling off your collateral assets to pay back your loan. Margin calls normally occur whenever crypto markets are very volatile, and the value of your ETH collateral drops significantly enough to put your LTV within liquidation territory.

ETH Loan Calculator

Let’s take a look at an example where we borrow $30,000 and see how an interest-only loan compares to an interest and principal loan.

Interest-OnlyInterest And Principal
Borrowed Sum$30,000$30,000
Term Of Loan12 months12 months
LTV60%60%
Monthly Repayment$250 a month for each of the first 11 months and a final payment of $30,250 on month 12$2,637 a month for 12 months
Total Owed$33,000$31,650
Total Interest Charged$3,000$1,650

How Do Taxes On Ethereum Loans Work?

Funds obtained by taking out a loan are not taxable. This is in contrast to funds obtained when you sell a cryptocurrency for profit which are subject to capital gains tax.

For traders who have seen their crypto appreciate significantly, taking out a crypto loan can be a tax-efficient way of getting liquidity for your gains. You are liable for the interest payments on these loans, however, these can often come out to be much lower than the capital gains tax you would pay if you were to sell your crypto.

Fees For Borrowing Against ETH

In addition to interest, most lending platforms charge several different fees related to the loan. These are usually:

  • Origination Fees: This is a fee that’s charged for the origination of the ETH loan. This fee is tacked on to the loan amount you owe back.
  • Withdrawal Fees: Platforms normally incentivize you to leave your cryptocurrency stored with them. Some do this by charging a fee, known as a withdrawal fee, for withdrawing your funds from the platform.

Are There Any Risks When Borrowing Against Ethereum?

Like with anything in crypto, borrowing against your ETH can be risky.

Collateral liquidation: Crypto loans are “overcollateralized,” meaning that your loan is fully secured by the collateral that you deposit. If the value of your collateral falls below a certain threshold or you fail to make your required debt service payments, the lender has the right to liquidate your collateral.

Security Risks: Centralized lending platforms hold your collateral within their wallets, and your funds are as safe as the security measures taken by the platforms. Most of these platforms have world-class security teams, so this is usually not an issue, however, hacks and phishing attacks are commonplace in crypto, so you should always keep in mind that there is no guarantee your crypto can’t be compromised.

Platform Insolvency: The volatile nature of cryptocurrencies means that billions of dollars can be wiped out off balance sheets in a matter of minutes. Like traditional financial institutions, crypto lenders are exposed to the markets, and they may experience insolvency if the markets are rocky enough. In the past, crypto lenders have gone bankrupt while holding client money that was never returned. Keep in mind that this is a real risk and, while unlikely, is one you take on when you custody your collateral assets with these platforms.

Other Earning Opportunities: Overcollateralized loans, unlike traditional loans, require you to already have more than the full loan amount that you would like to borrow available to you to use as collateral. This means that while you can get loans at great terms, you are locking up a significant sum every time you get a loan, and you cannot put that sum to work elsewhere. Between staking, lending, and liquidity providing, there are a plethora of earning opportunities that may better suit you rather than tying up your capital as collateral.

DeFi Loans

The platforms we cover above are centralized, meaning that they custody your collateral assets and they issue your loan from a centralized pool of funds controlled by the platform.

ETH loans are also available through decentralized finance (DeFi) means. These loans are peer-to-peer, meaning that the funds you borrow are directly put up by someone lending them out on the other side. DeFi platforms simply connect lenders with borrowers, and the rest is done through the blockchain itself.

DeFi loans do not have fixed interest rates — they vary constantly depending on demand for the borrowed asset. DeFi loans also support a wide range of collateral and borrowing assets meaning that other cryptocurrencies such as BTC, SOL, BNB and others can be borrowed in exchange for your ETH collateral.

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. You can use your ETH as collateral to take out fiat or stablecoin loans.

Flash loans are an advanced type of ETH loan that can be theoretically used to take out a loan without posting collateral. This works by taking out a loan and immediately repaying it with the same block on the blockchain. These transactions normally happen within a split second of each other, hence the name “flash loan.”

Yes. ETH interest is most often earned by lending out your Ethereum to those looking to borrow it.

Generally, yes. You are always exposed, however, to the volatility of the crypto markets, which may threaten your collateral, as well as to the platform you are borrowing from and its respective risk of bankruptcy.

When using ETH as collateral to borrow funds, the borrowed amount is not considered taxable by the IRS.

ETH loans are overcollateralized loans meaning that in order to take out some loan amount, you must deposit collateral that’s greater than the amount you’re looking to borrow. Some lenders, like SALT lending, offer personal and business loans that do not require collateral but do require a credit check.

George Hristov
George Hristov
Contributor
George is a tech writer interested in web3 startups and communities. In the dynamic world of crypto, he stays plugged into the day-to-day headlines, deep dives, and industry commentary.
Shannon Ullman
Shannon Ullman
Managing Editor
Managing editor working to make crypto easier to understand. Pairing editorial integrity with crypto curiosity for content that makes readers feel like they finally “get it.”

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