To get a loan quickly, apply online with a personal loan provider that is known for fast approval and funding times, such as LightStream. Applying online will ensure the fastest possible application processing time, assuming that all information on the application is accurate and entered correctly. You could get your loan funded within 2-3 business days, if not the same day.
Secured personal loans also tend to provide quick decisions, as the collateral they require greatly reduces the lender’s risk. Even people with bad credit can get approved relatively easily. Other ways to get a quick loan include borrowing from a family member or friend, using a credit card or tapping into home equity. There are also some non-ideal options, such as payday lenders, auto title lenders and pawnshops.
How to get a quick loan
1. Apply for one of the quickest personal loans. The quickest personal loan provider, LightStream, can fund and approve loans as soon as the same day you apply. Many other lenders offer funding within 2 - 3 business days. For the fastest timeline, pre-qualify first, apply online, and fill out the application accurately.
2. Apply for a secured personal loan. Secured personal loans require collateral for approval. This ensures that the lender can still recoup its money even if the borrower is unable to repay what they owe. This makes the approval decision easier for the lender.
3. Borrow from family/friends. If you ask a family member or friend to borrow money, it’s possible you could get it pretty much instantly, since they won’t be performing a credit check or making you fill out an application. You should still take time to write down and sign a loan agreement, though.
4. Use a credit card. If you have a credit card, you may be able to charge your expenses if they add up to less than the card’s credit limit. But credit card APRs are expensive, around 19% on average for new offers and around 15% for all existing accounts.
You could also withdraw cash against the card’s credit limit at an ATM, as long as you have a PIN. However, cash advances come with high fees and start accruing interest immediately, so they’re not ideal.
5. Use a HELOC. It takes weeks to get approved for a home equity line of credit, so normally they’re not a quick way to get money. However, if you already have one open, you can use it to get a quick loan any time during its draw period. Keep in mind that a HELOC is secured by your house, so if you can’t pay, the lender can foreclose.
There are a few things you should definitely avoid when trying to get a loan quickly. Don’t go to payday lenders, which lend a small amount of money until your next paycheck comes in. They charge sky-high fees (often a 400%+ APR). Auto title lenders are bad, too, as they charge high fees (up to a quarter of what you borrow) and use your car as collateral. Similarly, avoid pawnshops, as they charge up to 25% interest per month and can keep your items if you’re unable to buy the loan back.
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