If you’re curious about your credit score and how other financially savvy individuals are improving their financial position by following some straight-forward steps, we’ve written a free eBook.
Download “10 ways to a Better Credit Score” and learn how you could improve your credit score by managing your debts better.
Also, learn more about how Loans Geeks can help you.
No matter how well you budget or plan, you never know when a financial emergency may strike. Credit cards are useful for those situations, as you have time before you need to pay them off (without penalty), but you may not have access to one, or your credit card may be maxed out. You might be able to borrow money from a friend or family, but there are situations where that isn’t possible, or you may not feel comfortable doing so. If you’ve found yourself out of options and you can’t wait until your next payday as you need some quick cash, you may want to consider a payday loan. If you’ve never used a payday loan before, there’s a lot to know, and this guide will help you decide if a payday loan is right for you and your situation.
[read more=”Read more” less=”Read less”]
Payday loans are short-term forms of credit that can get you cash quickly, on the spot if you go in-store that are designed to be paid back on your next payday. So, if you get paid bi-weekly, but can’t wait that extra week until your next check for some cash, these can be handy. Usually, you’re required to pay the entire loan back in one payment, but there are cases where you can get more extended payment periods, or even be allowed to pay in installments.
The other significant benefit to payday loans is how easy they are to get, as they’re designed to be accessible to just about anyone, even if you have low or bad credit. Most lenders will have a minimum and maximum amount they’ll loan, and where you lie in that spectrum generally depends on how much money you make.
Payday loans typically have a high APR (annual percentage rate; essentially the cost of the loan) because of how fast the turnaround time is and low the requirements are to get one when compared to credit cards or various other loans. Each state has their own set of laws and regulations regarding payday loans, so it’s important to look up the rules in your particular state to make sure it’s legal, and you know how much they’re allowed to charge, and what rules they have to follow.
There are various forms of credit available to you from a variety of sources including banks and financial institutions. Payday loans are their unique form of credit, that are designed to be fast, and get you out of a jam.
The first major difference is how short-term payday loans are. While you can find longer terms, they’re generally meant to be paid back in a week or two, and usually up front. The term length varies from state to state, though six months is usually the longest you’ll ever find. Even for larger payday loans that can be paid in installments, they’ll usually only last from two to three paychecks.
The second crucial point that sets them apart are the low requirements they have. Many payday lenders won’t even do a credit check, allowing you to get payday loans bad credit. Most forms of credit are based on your credit standing, but the two main criteria to a receive a payday loan are your income and your bank account standing. So long as you can prove you receive a steady income, and have a bank account in good standing, you’re usually eligible for payday loans. From there, the amount you’re eligible for is usually based off how much you make, making it easy to get payday loans with no credit check.
The third main difference comes in the high rates and fees you have to pay. While it varies from state to state, payday lenders generally charge higher APRs as compared to what you’d find on other forms of credit due to how easy they are to get and how quickly you pay them back.
The last main difference is how much you can typically get. Credit cards may start small but can find up giving you tens of thousands of dollars in credit. Lines of credit, business loans, and installment loans can get significantly larger as well. However, with payday loans, they’re usually on the smaller side. Each state regulates how much lenders can offer, but typically payday lenders will offer between $100 and $1,000 on their payday loans.
It may be a little confusing as to the exact cost of the payday loan, as they have an APR, but given their short-term nature, they aren’t going to build up interest on the loan. Instead, there’s generally a flat fee for payday loans that you pay together with the principle of the loan on your next payday. For example, you may borrow $600, and the loan costs $90. On your next payday, you’ll have to pay back $690. Generally, this flat fee will cost between $10 and $30 per $100 borrowed and is determined by the state you live in.
However, that may not be the only fee you have to consider. Other fees may include:
-Prepaid Debit cards: Many payday lenders provide prepaid debit cards to provide your cash, and they may come with application fees, monthly fees or payment fees. If your payday lender doesn’t offer cash, then you may need to consider the costs that can come from these fees.
-Late Payment fees: If you miss your payment date, then you’re typically subject to a late fee, which is subject to regulation by the state. You may be able to negotiate out of a late payment fee, or even pay a smaller fee to extend your deadline depending on the payday lenders.
-NSF/Returned Fees: If for some reason your payment doesn’t clear, or you don’t have enough money in your account within the transaction time, then you may be subject to an NSF fee. The critical thing to know is you can often be double charged, by both your bank and the payday lenders. The state regulates how much the lender can charge, but your bank may have fees if a payment gets returned as well, so it’s important to ensure you have enough funds to cover the charge.
-Bank Fees: Depending on your bank account, the payment may go through even if you don’t have enough funds. In this case, you’ve gone into overdraft, and while the payday lender won’t charge anything, your bank may. All of these fees are important to keep in mind when deciding whether to take out any payday loans.
A very important question you may be asking yourself is “Where can I find payday loans near me?” That depends on which state you live in, as 14 of the 50 states have prohibited payday loans entirely.
If you live in Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Vermont, West Virginia or Washington DC, then payday loans are illegal in your state and not available. Even if you tried to apply for payday loans online, from another state, you wouldn’t be eligible as they have to verify your address before permitting the loan.
You can get payday loans online, and if you’re not in an immediate rush, they can be highly convenient. When you apply for payday loans online, you’ll still need to prove your address, bank account, and job status. Some may offer you the option to apply online, and finalize your loan in-store, receiving cash on the spot; while others will have you provide all the appropriate information online, have a team of employees review your information and send the money to your bank account.
Depending on the payday lender it may take a couple of business days to receive your cash, but for some, it is far more convenient and comfortable to get their payday loans online.
When searching for payday loans online, you’ll want to make sure the payday lender you choose is legitimate.
-Is the lender reputable?: To start, you’ll want to see how legitimate and reputable the lender you’re interested in is. Check online reviews, compare them to other payday lenders and try to contact them. If it feels sketchy, it might be and don’t be afraid to trust your instincts when deciding if they’re safe and reputable to use.
-Is the lender legal?: As tempting as it may be to look for payday lenders that will offer you payday loans online if you’re in a state where it’s illegal, the loan isn’t worth it. Be sure to check all the laws regulating payday loans in your state and make sure they follow them. You’ll also want to see if they have a physical location (searching ‘payday loans near me’ may help) as another way to make sure they’re operating in your state legally.
-Does the lender display the APR?: It’s a legal requirement for all payday lenders to display their APR on their websites, so you have the appropriate information you need. Regardless of if the loan term doesn’t surpass a year, APR is an easy way to see the cost of the loan, and compare it to other payday lenders or other credit options.
-Does the lender ask for money upfront?: There is no situation in which payday lenders should ask you for money upfront. Not only does it defeat the purpose of payday loans, but it’s not a real part of the payday loan process and should be a red flag for a scam.
-Does the lender push insurance?: Another red flag to a scam is if any payday lenders try to push an insurance policy on you. They have no benefit to you, only the payday lenders, and winds up costing you more if there’s an accident. It’s a way for them to bypass APR regulations, and a way to potentially gouge you of far more money than you need to spend.
In most instances, the only limit on what you can use your payday loans for is based on how much money you receive. As most payday lenders provide cash, there’s no way for them to track what you’re spending it on (and in reality, they likely don’t care). So long as you pay the loan back on time, and meet all their criteria, you’ll receive your money and be free to do with it as you choose.
However, their design is to help in quick emergencies to cover bills, or unexpected expenses such as a doctor appointment, car repairs, plumbing emergencies and more! You choose what you need from your payday loans, so long as it fits within the cash you receive.
In some cases, you can receive payday loans without a bank account, with the how and when varying for different payday lenders. Some payday lenders won’t give you the loan without it, often because they’ll use your bank account to automatically withdraw the repayment amount on your due date. However, some will allow it through prepaid debit cards, or by letting you come in-store. Generally, you can get your payday loans online, or in-store, picking up the cash or prepaid debit card and returning to the store on your due date to pay the money back with cash.
Payday lenders that offer prepaid debit card options will issue a card to you and load the funds you’ve selected on it. Once you’ve received the card, you’re free to do with is as you please, and spend it on whatever you choose. Some payday lenders may even load your money on a prepaid debit card you already have, but before you go for it be aware that there may be some fees involved and you may want to consider that.
Generally, payday loans won’t affect your credit, as most payday lenders won’t send any information to a credit agency. The three major credit report agencies are Trans Union, Experian, and Equifax, and while they may not receive the information, it may be collected by a small or special credit report agency, that can then be accessed by possible lenders.
The important thing about not having payday loans affect your credit is to make sure you make your payments. If you miss payments and have the loan get sent to collections, that’s when they’ll send your information to a credit agency, and it will negatively impact your score. Otherwise, if you make your payments there should be no direct issues or harm added to your credit score.
Because you commonly get payday loans with bad credit or receive payday loans with no credit check, the payday lenders aren’t as concerned with your credit score in any manner, until it comes to you missing payments. So, while there isn’t a guarantee, so long as you’re making all your payments on time, you shouldn’t have any issues with payday loans affecting your credit score.
There are two primary ways to apply for payday loans, both in-store and online. Before you go, you’ll want to double check you meet all the requirements for the payday lender provides. There is a variety of criteria that are typically commonplace for all payday lenders, including being an adult above age 18 in a state that payday loans are legal, you meet their minimum income threshold, and you get paid regularly (direct deposit preferred).
-In-Store: Applying in-store is the fastest way to get your money, as you can get cash right on the spot. You’ll want to make sure you bring all the appropriate documents, including government I.D., a social security number, your most recent paystub and a void cheque to your bank account. When you go in-store, they’ll help you through the process, and if you meet all the criteria (and have all the appropriate documents), they’ll tell you how much you’re eligible for. Once you’ve chosen the amount you want, they’ll tell you how much it costs and your pay date, and you’ll have to sign a contract. Make sure you receive a copy as well, as it will have your payback date, the loan amount and all the information you require.
-Online: You can also apply for payday loans online, and most payday lenders will give you the option to have the money sent to you via bank transfer, or allowing you to pick up cash in store. Applying online largely follows the same steps, but you’ll have to supply the appropriate documents online, usually through email, fax or a secure system they provide. Many payday lenders who let you apply for payday loans online will pre-approve you based on the information you supply, letting you choose your amount, before finalizing the approval after reviewing your documents. If you choose to pick-up in-store, you can bring the documents and finalize in the same manner, and if you finalize it online, you’ll sign the documents electronically and receive the funds (usually within a couple of business days) via bank transfer.
Instant payday loans are available if you go in-store, as you’ll receive cash right on the spot. Generally, they don’t take a long time, and the length it requires depends on how if you’re looking for payday loans online, the time you process it, how quickly you provide your documents and your bank.
When you’re applying for payday loans online, they can only review it when they have your documents, and it takes time to real people to manually review your submissions. If you apply in the morning, you may be able to have everything done early, and possibly receive your funds via transfer the next day or pick up the cash in-store that day. If you do it towards the end of the day, it’ll likely get pushed to the next day and have everything pushed off until the next day.
In summary, the fastest model is to go in-store for instant payday loans.
In short, yes! One of the most appealing aspects of payday loans is how easy they are to get, and the fact that you can receive payday loans with bad credit. However, for many, this is part of the downside, as it can be looked at as preying on those who already be in a negative financial situation.
A big reason you can receive payday loans with bad credit is because you can receive payday loans with no credit check. Most payday lenders don’t check your credit, focusing instead on whether you have a regular income and how much you have coming in.
Paying back your payday loans should be a top priority, as you don’t want to miss a payment. To start, you’ll accumulate fees from payday lenders, along with potential fees from your bank if the funds get returned in the form of an NSF fee. If you can pay that back shortly after, you’ll have additional costs, but it can accumulate. If you continue not to pay your loan back, your case may be sent to a collection agency, and that’s when it will be reported to major collection report agencies. If that happens, it will negatively affect your credit score, and make receiving any forms of credit in the future even more difficult. That’s why it’s important to make sure you don’t take out payday loans that you can’t pay back on time, ensuring you avoid the penalties that come from not paying back your loans.
If you know, you need some help with quick funds, but aren’t comfortable with the idea of payday loans there are various other options available to you, including:
-Overdraft: Many banks will offer overdraft if your credit and account are in good standing. Overdraft is a form of credit that allows you to overdraw your account (typically starting with $500), allowing you to continue to make bills and payments up to a certain limit. There’s generally a small fee, based on how much you’ve gone over and for how long, but it’s significantly less than the cost of payday loans, and is done directly through your bank.
-Talk to Creditors: If you have existing debt or creditors that you pay regularly, you can consider reaching out and explaining your situation to ask to push a payment or organize a new payment plan. Often times creditors can be understanding and will try to work with you if you explain the situation. They’re humans too, and sometimes will be on your side and try to help if they can.
-Employer: Consider talking to your employer and asking for an advance in pay or some assistance. If you have a close relationship with them, they may even be willing to personally give you a loan and help you out of a bad situation.
-Friends or Family: Many people don’t like asking their friends or family for help, but no one cares about you more than friends or family, and they may be willing to help. At the end of the day, it’s better to bruise your ego a bit then to put your finances in further disarray.
-Pawn Shop: Pawn shops can be a quick way to sell off some old stuff and cash fast. It’s not ideal, as they typically give you far less value than the worth of the goods, but if you’re in a jam, this may be an option for you.
-Title Loan: Title loans have you put up the title (ownership) of your vehicle as collateral to receive a loan. While these may be scary or unappealing as well, the potential upside is that you can often continue driving your vehicle during the life of the loan. For some, this may be an option they’re more comfortable with.
-Emergency Fund: While it won’t help right now, for the future you may want to start an emergency or “rainy day” fund. In the event of a bad situation, you’ll money put aside to cover it, or at least most of it, so that you don’t have to rely heavily on payday loans or other forms of credit.
For many, making decisions comes a lot easier with a pro and cons list, so we’ve made one for you to quickly see the possible positives and negatives of payday loans.
-Easy: The biggest positive is how easy and convenient payday loans are. Whether it’s being able to apply for payday loans online or receive payday loans with bad credit and payday loans with no credit check, it’s incredibly simple and easy to receive the loan you need. All you have to do is sign a few documents and be on your merry way!
-Fast: Payday loans are fast, especially when you go in-store and receive instant payday loans. However, even if you go online, the process is always quick and easy to get the money you need, and when you’re in a pinch and need money fast, payday loans can cover you when you need it.
-Versatile: Payday loans are versatile, not just in the options for in-store loans or payday loans online (or the various ways in which you can receive the funds), but in potential payment plans and not having to use a current asset as collateral. Payday loans can work for you, making it easy to get cash fast.
However, it’s not all perfect, as there are a few cons that come with payday loans as well.
-Expensive: Payday loans are expensive, whether you’re looking at their high APR or the fee per $100 borrowed. Also, depending on the route you take, there may be various other costs involved. These costs can add up real fast, and with shorter payback times, could lead to the next con.
-Loan Cycle: It’s easy to fall into a loan cycle, especially if you take more than you can afford. Remember, you’re not just paying back the amount you loaned, but the cost of the loan, which leads to many needing to re-loan to cover that (and their other expenses). Next thing you know, you may find yourself in a cycle of constantly taking out new loans. Alternatively, if you can’t pay back the loan at all, you can find yourself accumulating more debt and tanking your credit score even further. If you aren’t confident you can pay the loan back right away, without taking out a new loan, then you may want to look elsewhere.
-Potential Scams: With so many states having strict regulations, or banning payday loans altogether, it can be easy to fall into a trap and use a scam or illegal lender. It can take a lot of due diligence to make sure you find reputable and legal payday lenders.
The important thing to know before choosing a payday loan is why they’re so heavily regulated in some states and outright banned in about 16 states. Payday loans are one of the most predatory forms of credit available, as it’s especially easy for them to get out of hand quickly. APRs are incredibly high, and what often winds up happening is you use a payday loan in a jam, but don’t have enough to pay it off and cover all your expenses. For many, this can lead to a perpetual cycle where you’re constantly taking out a new loan each payday, to cover the losses from the prior loan. You can find yourself stuck in a seemingly never-ending loop, costing you potentially hundreds of dollars every payday.
Governments understand the predatory nature, which is why so many states have such high regulations or have made them illegal. When you see a state declaring something as so predatory, they want to ban, you know to be wary. That doesn’t mean it’s all bad, as for many payday loans are a one-time fix it for a bad situation, but you should know the risks when you go in.
That’s why you’ll want to explore all options and make sure you know payday loans are right for your situation. It may even be worth to ask a friend or family member if you can borrow money from them. Consider an installment loan (which generally have much more relaxed payment plans) or various other options.
Everyone will find positives and negatives with payday loans, and ultimately the decision on whether to use one depends on if you’re in an eligible state, and your own personal situation. For many, payday loans are exactly what they need to get past a bad situation quickly, but for others, it can lead to a bad a cycle that ruins their finances even further. At the end of the day, it’s up to you to know what’s best!
Absolutely yes. Payday loans do not depend on your credit score. The lenders mostly only require that you have a regular source of income to qualify.
Yes, payday loan applications can be canceled. However, the cancellation request should be submitted within 2 or 3 working business days from the application date. Early requests do not carry any cancellation charges, however varies from lender to lender. It is best that you contact your lender as soon as possible for more details on cancellation requests.
No, approval of a payday loan does not depend on the borrower’s credit score. This is why lenders don’t run credit checks.
When lenders evaluate your application for a payday loan, they focus on the following factors:
Typically your application for a payday loan via Loans Geeks will be processed the same day. If your documents are valid and sufficient, you will receive an immediate approval.
Yes, there is an approval limit for payday loans. The final value depends on the borrower, his/her job, and monthly income.