It's become really easy to get a personal loan in the U.S., thanks to Silicon Valley.
Many venture-backed companies have popped up in recent years, powered by new underwriting technologies, consumer-friendly websites and a willingness to lend money where banks won't.
Personal loans funded on Internet finance site Credit Karma surged 148 percent in 2015, following growth of 374 percent in 2014, the San Francisco-based company told CNBC. For prime borrowers, interest rates can be less than half that of credit cards.
Enamored by the growth prospects, venture capitalists almost tripled their investments in financial services companies last year to $3.05 billion, the most since 2000, according to the National Venture Capital Association. Meanwhile, institutional investors and family offices have flooded the market with boatloads of debt to fuel the lending, generating handsome returns in the process.