Credit checks explained

All lenders do some kind of credit check, but some do credit checks that other lenders and businesses will see when they look at your credit report (which is bad for you because too many credit inquiries will hurt your credit score). A credit check that shows up on your credit report is called a hard credit check. In the first table we only list loans that don’t do hard credit checks (aka soft credit checks), and we focus on lenders that have a history of accepting borrowers with low credit scores.

Even with lenders that offer soft credit checks, you need to provide a few things. The minimum requirements for both payday loans and small installment loans are:
  • You have an income of at least $1,000 a month
  • You can provide proof of employment
  • And you are at least 18 years old
Also, here are a few questions to ask yourself before taking out a loan:
  • Can I afford the monthly payments?
  • Does the length of the loan term interrupt any of my other financial goals or obligations?
  • Is my employment situation stable enough to expect the same income over the loan repayment period?
  • Do I have an emergency fund to cover any other expenses that may crop up?
Your answers to these questions give you an idea of how much of a risk the loan could be for you. Whether you have bad credit or good credit now, falling into a debt trap is a mistake you want to avoid. Make sure you have a strong repayment plan so you don’t end up wracking up late fees and hurting your credit even more.

Payday and Installment loans - 2018

LenderAmount & CostCredit CheckPayout & Repayment TermsLoan Features
CashUSA
$500 - 10,000
Individual rates
SoftIn some cases next day deposit
Decision Time: 90 sec
Repayment Terms: Varies
High rates of approval ?
Bad/No Credit: Permitted
Required age: 18+
Founded in 2009
Connects you with a lender
HonestLoans
$200 - 2,500
$30 - 750
SoftIn some cases same day deposit
Decision Time: 90 sec
Repayment Terms: Varies
High rates of approval ?
Bad/No Credit: Permitted
Required age: 18+
Connects you with a lender
BadCredit.com
$100 - 5,000
Individual rates
-In some cases next day deposit
Decision Time: 90 sec
Payment Extension: Yes
Loan Rollover: Yes
High rates of approval ?
Bad/No Credit: Permitted
Required age: 18+
Founded in 2017
Connects you with a lender
FirstChoiceAdvances
$100 - 1,000
$15 - 300
SoftIn some cases same day deposit
Decision Time: 90 sec
Repayment Terms: Varies
High rates of approval ?
Bad/No Credit: Permitted
Required age: 18+
Connects you with a lender
247fastfunds
$100 - 5,000
Individual rates
-In some cases same day deposit
Decision Time: 90 sec
Repayment Terms: Varies
High rates of approval ?
Bad/No Credit: Permitted
Required age: 18+
Founded in 2012
Connects you with a lender

Best Personal Loans online - 2018

You can apply for a small personal loan through a bank or credit union, which typically range from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. Loan application approval depends on your credit history, income and other factors and interest usually hovers between 10% and 12%. The plus side is that it only takes a few days to find out whether you’re approved or not. Some online lenders can even provide a decision within minutes. Expect your repayment term to last around two years.

These might do a hard credit check upon application, but mostly they first do a soft credit check then a hard on payout.

LenderAmountCredit CheckPayout & Repayment TermsFeatures
SignatureLoans$1,000 - 35,000SoftLength: 6 mth to 6 yr
Decision: Usually within 48h
High rates of approval ?
APR: 5.99 - 36.00%
Available in 50 states
Bad/No Credit: Permitted
Connects you with a lender
BetterLoansMutual$1,000 - 5,000-Length: Up to 1 yr
Decision: Usually within 48h
High rates of approval ?
APR: 7.00 - 36.00%
Available in 45 states
Bad/No Credit: Permitted
Connects you with a lender
LoanStart$1,000 - 40,000BothLength: 2 mth to 7 yr
Decision: Usually within 48h
Medium rates of approval ?
APR: 4.84 - 35.99%
Available in 50 states
Bad/No Credit: Permitted
Connects you with a lender

Loans Introduction & Alternatives

You may not need a fortune, but sometimes you do need an extra bit of cash to fund an emergency or expenses that are beyond your normal budget. There are several types of loans to help you during these times; there are even small loans for poor credit.

  • Installment Loans
  • Payday Loans
  • Peer to Peer Loans

Learn more about your different loan options and how to qualify for each one.

Installment Loans / Personal loans

An installment loan is actually a type of personal loan and comes with a couple of different benefits. First, your payments are typically spaced out over a set period of time with a fixed interest rate, so you always know exactly what your monthly bill will add up to.
Another perk is that in most cases, installment lenders report your payment history to the major credit bureaus. Just check to see if your lender of choice reports to all of three bureaus, or just one or two. When you stay on top of your payments each month, those are recorded onto your credit report as positive entries. That can provide your credit score with a major boost so that you can eventually qualify for better rates and terms on loans and credit cards.

Payday Loans

Payday loans are a realistic option for borrowers with poor or little credit. In fact, most lenders don’t even run a credit check and instead are more concerned with your monthly income. Loan amount maximums depend on what state you live in, but are usually set between $500 and $1,000.

You can often get approved on the spot, either in a store or online. Rather than charging a fixed interest rate, payday loans charge a fixed fee when you receive your money. Additionally, the repayment period only lasts about two weeks and borrowers must provide either a check for the full amount or access to their bank account for the lender to access on the due date.

Each lender has different requirements. While you may not be guaranteed a payday loan at each and every one of them, you’re quite likely to find a lender that’s willing to work with your specific financial needs.

Peer to Peer Loans

Relatively new to the lending market, peer to peer loans are facilitated online and funded by individual investors. Borrowers are graded by risk level based on their credit and investors then select which loans they want to fund. Interest rates are based on your grade, so while you may have a higher rate if your credit score is low, investors may see your application as a good project to fund because their returns will be higher.

Choosing the Right Loan for You

When you first start shopping for a loan of any kind, first try to get an idea of your current credit score. Once you have that, you can search lenders by their credit and income requirements. In most cases, you can get a pre-qualification loan quote. That gives you an idea of how much you’ll be allowed to borrow, what kind of interest rate you can expect, and how long your loan term would last.

Compare

All of this information combined can tell you what your monthly loan payments would amount to with the particular loan offer. At this point, you’re never required to commit to the loan. Compare different loan offers before you sign a loan agreement. Also take a look at your current finances.

When used responsibly, any kind of loan, whether it’s a personal loan, installment loan, payday loan, or peer to peer loan, can be an effective tool in achieving your financial goals.

William Wood

Writer - William Wood

William is a writer specializing in the personal finance niche. He is well-rounded on the subject and is able to dissect complex financial topics, creating unique interesting blog posts which readers would not only comprehend but enjoy reading. He has so far gathered experience from his 6 years of active personal finance articles. He’s college educated at the University of Arizona. - Read more about us at Toploanlenders