Emergencies and unforeseen circumstances can occur at any time to anyone. Some situations require a financial remedy, but what can you do if you lack the necessary funds? A short-term loan from an online payday loan lender might be the answer.
A payday loan is an excellent option for anyone in need of quick cash for an emergency, especially if they don’t have time or credit to seek an unsecured or secured personal loan from their bank. With a payday loan, borrowers can complete a secure online application and receive a response from an online lender in minutes.
Despite the convenience of payday loans, it can be tough to find the best payday loans online. That is why we took the time to compile a comprehensive list featuring the best online payday lenders. However, it is worth noting that loan options, interest rates, and approvals will vary according to where you live.
Here are our top picks for the best online payday loans.
The Best Lenders for Online Payday Loans
- ClearViewLoans: Best online payday lender overall (up to $5,000)
- BadCreditLoans: Best for bad credit loans (up to $10,000)
- CashUSA: Best for installment loans up to 72 months (up to $10,000)
- PersonalLoans: Best for larger personal loans (up to $35,000)
#1. ClearViewLoans: Best Online Payday Lender Overall
One of the top choices for the best payday loans online comes from ClearViewLoans.com. When an emergency occurs, you won’t have time to research multiple lending websites or fill out stacks of paperwork. ClearViewLoans.com dedicates itself to connecting borrowers with a reliable lender using a simple online application process.
ClearViewLoans.com will not provide payday loans to consumers directly or make loan decisions. Instead, the business will connect borrowers with lenders within its network to see what loans they qualify for and help them find the best rates.
Loan amounts from ClearViewLoans.com can range from $100 to $5,000, depending on the lender and state regulations. The online loan inquiry process is quick and secure.
After completing the simple loan application, a lender will provide a same-day response along with the loan terms, including all applicable fees. If you agree to the terms, the lender online will deposit the requested amount into your checking account as soon as the following day.
Eligibility requirements for ClearViewLoans.com are straightforward. They include:
- Being employed at your current job for a minimum of 90 days
- Being a U.S. citizen over age 18
- Having a checking account in your name
- Providing a valid phone number and email address
- Having a monthly take-home income of at least $1,000
Though ClearViewLoans.com is free to use, the interest rate for any approved loan will depend on the lender’s specific terms and conditions. You will receive full disclosure of all fees and rate details at the time of approval. Some lenders may also perform a credit check to view your credit score, which they may use to determine your interest rate, fees, and terms. You can generally use your loan proceeds for any purpose.
Reasons to consider ClearViewLoans.com for your payday loans are:
- Speedy service
- Simple loan application process
- Sensitive data security
#2. BadCreditLoans: Online Loans for Bad Credit Borrowers
Anyone looking for the best online payday loan should consider services from BadCreditLoans. The company is not a lender and will not provide you with an unsecured loan, which is a type of loan that does not require collateral. Instead, the service presents your personal loan request information to multiple lenders within its network, and the lenders can choose to grant your loan approval.
BadCreditLoans does an excellent job connecting people with payday loan providers who offer services at a good value. The online company also educates its customers about applying for personal loans responsibly from reputable lenders.
In many cases, having a low credit score can limit personal loan options to those with high interest rates. However, BadCreditLoans proudly helps people with low credit scores connect with lenders who can meet their needs. Even people with bad credit scores of around 450 can take advantage of the services this company provides.
Eligibility for receiving assistance from BadCreditLoans includes:
- You must be 18 years old or older.
- You must have a steady income source.
- You must have proof of income.
- You must have an active checking or savings account.
Applying for bad credit loans with this company is simple. Its website is easy to navigate and provides clear instructions. All you need to do is click the “Get Started” button on the BadCreditLoans official website and complete the application for a short-term personal loan.
With BadCreditLoans, you can receive personal loans ranging from $500 to $10,000. Lenders within the network have APR ranges between 5.99% to 35.99%, with loan terms falling between the minimum 90-day repayment payback period to a 72-month or six-year maximum repayment term. Not all lenders will offer these conditions, but what is certain is that BadCreditLoans’ services are 100% free.
Here are other positives about BadCreditLoans:
- Positive customer reviews
- No credit score is necessary
- Extensive network of online lenders
- No additional fees
#3. CashUSA: Fast and Easy Payday Advances up to $10,000
CashUSA is a leading online platform that connects consumers with reputable personal loan lenders. The business takes an upfront approach to help clients make the best financial decisions by clearly outlining terms and conditions and lenders’ APRs. CashUSA also offers financial education about credit scores, budget planning, and more.
The company helps people receive short-term personal loans using a simple online form that it will share with its extensive network of lenders. The application takes minutes to complete, and your information will remain safe and secure with industry-standard encryption protection.
With help from CashUSA, you could receive crucial emergency cash as soon as the next business day directly in your checking account. After submitting your secure application, a lender will perform a soft credit check to determine your creditworthiness. However, that credit check will not be visible on your credit report or negatively impact your score.
To be eligible for a personal loan through CashUSA, you must:
- Meet the minimum age requirement of 18
- Be a U.S. citizen
- Have a valid bank account
- Earn at least $800 a month
- Provide work and home telephone numbers and a valid email address
When you apply for a payday loan from CashUSA, you can be confident that any lender that accepts your loan request will outline all terms and conditions for the loan, including interest rates and fees. Some personal loan lenders have APR rates between 5.99% and 35.99% for loans between $500 and $10,000.
The loan term for an installment loan can be as short as 90 days or as long as 72 months. Some installment loans have negotiable terms, but you will know your repayment responsibilities before signing the contract for the loan.
Other benefits of using CashUSA to search for a payday loan are:
- It’s free to use.
- You can compare loan offers before accepting one.
- You will link with lenders minutes after submitting an inquiry.
- Funds can be in your bank account after one business day.
#4. PersonalLoans: Best for Cash Loans up to $35,000
When you need a personal loan to handle your immediate financial needs, you may feel a temptation to accept any loan offer, especially if you know you have bad credit. However, it is always best to look for an installment loan with reasonable repayment terms and an affordable APR. PersonalLoans.com will help you find and secure online personal loans that work best for your needs and budget.
PersonalLoans.com is an online lending marketplace that allows borrowers to review the best payday loans available. The company works with various lenders to present consumers with a one-stop destination to compare interest rates and loan terms.
Using PersonalLoans.com is free, and the business has no hidden fees or upfront costs. You don’t even have to accept a loan offer, making the service beneficial for anyone who wants to explore their loan options without an obligation to borrow money from a lender. Instead, it offers you the opportunity to find a personal loan provider with competitive rates whenever you need cash fast.
Short- and long-term personal loans through PersonalLoans.com can range from $1,000 to $35,000, with some APRs falling between 5.99% and 35.99%. Paydays loans are usually available in smaller amounts because they have a shorter loan term.
Whether you need to pay for plumbing repair or home renovations, this company can help you take care of your financial obligations as long as you meet these eligibility requirements:
- Be at least 18 years old
- Have a social security number
- Have a checking account in your name
Applying for personal loans and payday loans through PersonalLoans.com is as simple as completing a secure online form. The company will supply your application to its network of loan lenders for approval.
If a lender approves your request, they will outline the loan details, including interest rates, fees, and other conditions. Once you and the lender finalize the loan, you could receive the money in your bank account within a business day or two.
Below are some pros about PersonalLoans.com:
- Simple application process
- Can receive personal loans up to $35,000
- Flexible payment terms
- Data encryption for customer protection
What Is a Payday Loan?
If you don’t have enough money in your bank account to cover essential expenses, you could take out a payday loan. These loans tend to be a high-cost, short-term financial solution that provides borrowers with small sums of money. Since it is a short-term loan, you would have to pay back the entire loan amount with interest within two weeks or by your next paycheck.
The amounts an online payday lender will give an approved borrower vary, but the amount is usually $1000 or less. The service is for immediate needs like a sudden household bill or essential service, so the amounts are low enough for borrowers to pay back quickly.
Multiple lenders only require borrowers to have a bank account and a minimum monthly income. Some lenders perform a soft credit check with the three major credit bureaus to review borrowers’ credit history to determine a person’s creditworthiness. However, having a bad credit score doesn’t necessarily mean you cannot receive a payday loan.
Many people who apply for payday loans online do so because they have bad credit scores. These borrowers might not meet the minimum credit score required to receive a loan from a bank or other financial institution.
If you need to borrow money, the online payday loan process usually includes the following steps:
- The loan borrower will request a loan amount from a payday loan lender.
- After receiving approval, the borrower will write the lender a post-dated check from their checking account for the loan’s total amount, including all interest rates and fees, or authorize the amount to come out of their bank account on the payback date.
- The payday lender will submit the requested loan amount into the borrower’s bank account.
- The borrower will authorize the online lender to cash the post-dated check on the check date or the borrower’s upcoming payday or withdraw the funds from their account.
Online payday lenders provide consumers with emergency cash through instant loans, but they are not available everywhere in the United States. As of this article’s writing, 12 states ban payday loans. Eighteen states have mandated a 36% interest rate cap on cash advance loans, but some places don’t have any limits, resulting in interest rates that may be over 600%.
Understanding Payday Loan Rates and Fees
Before taking out payday loans from lenders online, be sure to understand interest rates and fees. Every loan offer from an online lending marketplace will include fees. If you’re not careful about your payday loan amounts and monthly income, the cash advance could negatively impact your budget.
Most payday loan providers charge between $15 to $20 for every $100 in the loan request, resulting in APRs between 391% to 521%. How much you’ll pay the payday loan provider back will depend on the lender, the loan amount, the lender’s interests rates, and the state’s loan regulations.
For example, Texas does not put caps on interest rates for payday loans, which means the rates can exceed 662%. At that rate, the borrower would have to pay $370 on a $300 loan after two weeks, according to the repayment terms.
If the borrower cannot repay the total loan amount on time, the interest will continue to build. It’s possible to request a loan rollover in certain states, which means the borrower can pay fees and extend the loan. After five months, a $300 payday loan could cost over $1,000 because of additional finance charges.
Multiple lenders will adjust their payday loan costs based on several factors, including your:
- Credit history
- Credit score
- Loan amount
- Previous payday loan repayment history
The lender will outline the loan terms in paperwork before you receive the funds from an approved cash advance or personal loan. The documentation will help you understand the loan’s interest rate, fees, and repayment terms, including its due date.
When searching for the best online payday loan from online lending marketplaces, it is always best to compare interest rates and fees to ensure that you can get the cash loan you need without incurring additional debt. High interest rates can be a long-term problem, so researching multiple online payday loan platforms is ideal before choosing a lender.
Requirements for Getting a Payday Loan Online
The purpose of online payday loans is to help people receive funds immediately to address a temporary financial problem until their next paycheck. Because the service is quick, it is usually easy to get loan approval. The basic qualifications for a cash loan, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), are:
- Be at least 18 years old
- Have an active checking or savings account
- Provide a pay stub or other document to prove your income
- Hold valid government-issued identification
Payday loan requirements may vary among direct lenders beyond the mandated requirements from the CFPB. For example, you may need a specific minimum monthly income to get a bad-credit loan.
If you meet all of the payday loan lender’s requirements, it can take as few as 15 minutes to receive a loan offer online. You could get the money in your bank account as early as the next business day.
With in-person payday loans, lenders usually require a post-dated check from the borrower for the total amount of the loan, with the interest rate and fees included as collateral for the cash advance. However, online lenders usually request permission from the borrower to withdraw the funds from their bank account, according to the loan term.
Alternatives to Payday Loans
Predatory online lenders are a serious problem, which is why we took the time to uncover the best online payday lenders for a short-term loan. Because people often need emergency cash quickly, it’s not uncommon for an unreliable loan provider to set interest rates higher than 600% APR, which is almost double the average payday loan interest rate at 391% APR. Interests rates are usually higher for bad-credit borrowers than for people with a decent or excellent credit history.
High interest rates for small loan amounts may not seem problematic at first. However, the interest rate will increase if you fail to pay the online lender according to the repayment terms. Missing loan payments, even once, could make it almost impossible to repay the money since the loan amount and interest rate will continue to rise.
Working with the best online payday loan providers is beneficial, but these loans are not the only financial options you might have. If you can’t afford to repay an online payday loan within two weeks, the loan could accrue additional fees, which can put you in another financial bind.
We recommend that any consumers in need of quick cash explore their options instead of immediately accepting a traditional payday loan. You want to repay your loan amount within the original loan term without relying on additional loans or loan rollovers to pay the debt.
Here are some of the best payday loan alternatives to consider.
Auto Title Loans
An auto title loan is a personal loan that uses your car as collateral instead of a check from your checking account. Like online payday loans, title loans tend to have fast processing times, so you can get a loan approval in less than an hour, depending on the lender.
The vehicle will remain in your possession, which means you can continue to drive it, but the lender will hold the title until you pay off the loan. According to the agreement, the car will legally belong to the lender if you fail to pay off the loan.
The basic requirements for an auto title loan are:
- The original car title proving sole ownership and full equity in the vehicle
- Government-issued identification
- Proof of residency that matches the name on the title
- Current car registration
- Proof of auto insurance
- Copies of the car keys
- Recent pay stubs or proof of income
In most cases, the auto title loan limit will fall between 25% to 50% of the vehicle’s cash value. If you choose to apply for a title loan, you will repay the loan amount, including fees and interest, within a specific period to reclaim the vehicle without getting a lien.
If you cannot make your monthly payments, you could ask the lender to roll the loan over, but this continues the borrowing cycle, which can be challenging to escape.
However, if you only need extra funds now and can pay back the loan quickly, you will find that auto title lenders have generous qualification terms because your vehicle will be the collateral. You could likely get a title loan even if you have a bad credit score or no credit history but own a vehicle.
The downside of auto title personal loans is that you could lose your vehicle. These loans also tend to have high interest rates. Though title loans are a worthwhile alternative to payday loans, you should only take one out if you are sure you can afford the repayment.
If you don’t own a vehicle or want to use one as loan collateral, you can use other valuable goods, instead, as collateral for a pawnshop loan. Pawnshop loans are secured loans that follow a straightforward process:
- Bring a valuable item you own and a valid ID to any pawnshop.
- Allow the pawnbroker to appraise the item.
- Receive a cash loan that could equate to 25% to 60% of the item’s value.
- Repay the loan within the designated period.
Like title loans, the pawnshop reserves the right to take ownership of your belongings if you do not make your payment on time. Pawnshop loan fees can range from 2.5% to 25%. If you cannot pay at the end of the loan term in full, you can rollover the loan and incur additional fees.
The good news is that your credit score holds no bearing on your ability to receive a loan. Since you have to provide collateral to obtain cash, it doesn’t matter if you have excellent credit or bad credit, making pawnshop loans a superb option for people with low credit scores.
Peer-to-Peer Lending Sites
Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending is another way to get money before your next payday. P2P lending sites pair borrowers with businesses and individuals willing to loan money to those in need. Though these platforms do not provide users with traditional payday loans, the websites do follow responsible lending practices.
The general process for receiving a P2P loan is as follows:
- Apply for a loan through a reputable P2P site.
- Get a rating that determines your qualifications for a specific type of loan.
- Wait for a loan provider to review your request.
- Accept an offer.
- Make monthly payments on time to the lender.
Qualification and repayment terms for P2P loans are similar to those of installment loans. For example, if a borrower has a low credit score, they might not qualify for a P2P loan or may need to pay at a high rate. However, an excellent credit score could yield better interest rates than bank and credit union loans.
Credit Union Loans and Payday Alternative Loans
If you’re a member of a federal credit union that is part of the National Credit Union Administration, you could seek a payday alternative loan (PAL). PALs tend to have lower rates than payday loans. You could use one to avoid high fees or pay off an existing payday loan.
Credit loans may include an application fee of up to $20. PAL amounts from a federal credit union can range from $200 to $1,000, with payment periods of one month to six months. The APR for credit union loans is about 8.86% on average, but they perform hard credit checks that could affect your credit score.
Credit unions also offer unsecured and secured loans. People favor short-term loans from these institutions because credit unions tend to consider borrowers’ entire financial picture to determine their eligibility. That means a person could qualify for a credit union loan even if they have a low credit score.
Things to Avoid When Getting Payday Loans
Payday loans are highly beneficial to people with an immediate financial need, but that doesn’t mean they are the best tools for everyone. People with long-term financial struggles could go further into debt by accepting online payday loans.
If you need a pay advance to take care of an emergency like a medical expense or car repair and know you can pay the money back in a short time, a payday advance may work for you. However, it’s still best to exercise caution to prevent accidental debt accumulation.
Below are some actions to avoid to ensure that you use payday loans responsibly.
Not Considering Loan Alternatives
Before accepting any loan, consider all of your options. Sometimes, it’s possible to raise money by cutting back expenses or borrowing from friends and family. You could also earn additional income to put into your savings account with a part-time job or freelance work, but making extra income this way may not be feasible in an active emergency.
Another loan alternative is to sell belongings you no longer need. Instead of listing the item online to find a buyer, you could sell it to a local pawnshop. Unlike pawnshop loans, selling items won’t cost you anything, and you could walk out with cash in hand.
Making Late Payments
Payday lenders have strict payment terms. Traditional loans from banks and credit unions may forgive a late payment and cancel penalties, but that isn’t the case with payday loans. Missing your payment could result in severe consequences, such as:
- Overdraft fees from your bank
- A drop in your credit score
- Calls from collection agencies
Even if you don’t experience a significant consequence, missing a payday loan payment or paying late will force you to spend more on interest and finance charges. Before taking out payday loans, always have a repayment plan in place to prevent future problems.
Not Reading Loan Terms
Your loan’s APR will tell you how much it will cost you to borrow a specific amount of money from a lender. The lender may also attach charges for missing payments or rolling a previous loan into a new contract. The contract will also explain the repayment schedule.
Accepting a loan offer without reading the terms and conditions is dangerous to your financial future. Predatory lending companies often trick consumers by presenting attractive terms upfront while burying excessive requirements like extreme interest rates and short payback periods within the actual terms and conditions.
Before accepting a loan from anyone, you will have an opportunity to review the terms of the loan. Take the time to review whatever the lender gives you and make sure you understand everything. Do not accept loans with confusing or suspicious terms.
Loans for Bad Credit Borrowers, With High APR
People with less-than-perfect credit scores may think they need to accept any payday loan, regardless of interest rates. A low credit score will not yield the same interest rates as a borrower with excellent credit. However, APRs over 36% are expensive and could result in hundreds or thousands of dollars in fees in addition to the money you borrow.
Always compare rates and calculate how much interest you’d have to pay for your loan amount. Consider if the rate is reasonable enough for you to make the monthly payments.
The Advantages of Applying for a Payday Loan Online
When you get hit with an unexpected expense, applying for payday loans online provides a convenient way to get the money you need from the comfort of your home. You don’t have to visit a lender in person or fill out hardcopy documents to get help. With online loans for bad credit, you can handle everything at your convenience.
The payday loan process is also quick. In many cases, it takes 10 minutes or less to submit an application and receive offers. Some lenders will provide approved funds within 24 hours through direct deposit.
Frequently Asked Questions About Online Payday Loans
What Are Online Payday Loans Most Commonly Used For?
Consumers often turn to payday loans to deal with emergency expenses. You might not have enough money on hand to handle some situations, like car troubles, medical bills, and plumbing disasters. These loans provide short-term relief for financial issues that can’t wait until your next paycheck.
Is There Such a Thing as an Instant Payday Loan?
Online payday loans are a quick way to get the finances you need without waiting days for approval. However, they are not instant. Any lender offering instant loans is likely running a scam.
Lenders will need time to review your application and transfer funds. You will also need time to review the loan’s terms and conditions. The quickest you can expect to receive online payday loans is 24 hours.
Can You Get a Payday Loan With Bad Credit?
It is possible to get payday loans without a stellar credit score. You should keep in mind, though, that a low score usually means a higher interest rate. If your credit history is too poor, you could get a denial for your payday loan inquiry.
It’s best to explore your loan options before applying for one, even those on our list. Some lenders will perform soft credit checks, while others don’t check credit scores at all. If you don’t have the best credit, consider lenders that specifically work with borrowers without good credit or those that don’t have a minimum credit score requirement.
What Interest Rate Do Payday Loans Come With?
Most payday loans have an annual average APR of 400%. It can cost between $15 to $20 for every $100 you borrow. Interest rates for a standard two-week loan can fall between 391% and 600% or more.
These rates are averages and do not account for states with interest rate caps and those that do not impose limits. A general rule to consider is “the shorter the term, the higher the interest will likely be” for a payday loan.
How Soon Do You Have to Pay Back a Payday Advance?
The best payday loans usually require borrowers to pay lenders back within two or four weeks. Payback periods will vary by state and lender requirements.
Can I Get an Online Loan Without a Credit Check?
Yes. Not every lender will check a person’s credit score before making an offer for a loan. Instead of relying on your creditworthiness, lenders will use your most recent pay stub and proof of income to determine how much they can offer you.