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Instant Loans: If you find yourself out of cash before your next paycheck, it might be worth researching Money Lending Apps to Find One That Can Provide the Funds You Need.
Here’s our take on the best apps currently available to help you decide which, if any, is right for your situation. Please note that we only include apps where you can apply for loans directly through the app and not just manage payments.
Where do they lend urgent money? Who lends me urgent money? How can I get a quick loan? Which banks lend easier? How much money can you get with an immediate online loan?
Best for Low Fees: Earnin
Instant loans. Why Earnin Stands Out: When you borrow money through the Earnin app , the company doesn’t charge interest or fees for your paycheck advance. Instead, ask customers to consider providing an optional tip in an amount they feel is appropriate. But you don’t have to tip to use the app .
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- Eligibility Requirements: To use Earnin, you must have a consistent payment schedule: weekly, bi-weekly, semi-annually, or monthly. More than 50% of your paycheck must be sent to a single checking account by direct deposit each pay period. Plus, you’ll need to work in the same place every day or use electronic timesheets to keep track of your hours.
- Withdrawal limits: You can borrow up to $100 per pay period when you start using the app. As you continue to use the app and successfully pay Earnin, that limit can increase up to 5,500.
- Financing timeline: If you have Earnin’s “Lightning Speed” feature, the lender says you can receive your money right away. But if your bank does not support this option, you will not be able to use it. Without lightning speed, Earnin says he’ll typically get his money in one or two business days.
- Overdraft Protection: If you sign up for Balance Protection alerts, Earnin will notify you when your bank balance is getting low, which can help you avoid overdraft fees. If your checking account balance drops below 1,100, you can sign up for Balance Shield cash outs, which automatically collect up to 1,100 of your earnings, which could help you avoid incurring a negative account balance .
Instant loans. Why Dave Stands Out : If he needs extra money to cover an expense before his next payday, Dave offers cash advances of up to 1,100.
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- Eligibility: No credit check is required to use the Dave app. But you must have a fixed paycheck that has been established with direct deposit into your checking account, and you must show that you have enough money in your account to pay the advance once you receive your next paycheck.
- Membership Fee — Dave charges a monthly membership fee of $1.
- Low Balance Alerts – Dave sends alerts when your checking account balance is running low or when you have an outstanding bill, so you can decide whether to request a payday advance to help avoid overdraft fees.
- No Interest – Dave charges no interest on cash advances, but asks for optional tips to help support the application.
- Financing schedule: You can choose between two financing options: standard or express. Standard financing is included in your monthly membership fee, but it takes up to three business days to receive your money. You may be able to get your money the same day you request it with the express option, but it costs a small fee (Dave doesn’t specify how much the fee is).
Best for a suite of online services: MoneyLion
Instant loans. Why MoneyLion Stands Out: MoneyLion offers a 0% APR “Instacash” cash advance up to 2,250 once you sign up for a free account and link an eligible checking account.
No credit check required.
But the MoneyLion app is really worth checking out for what it brings to the table: a mobile banking account, an automatic investment account with no admin fees, and access to a credit-building loan (with a monthly membership fee). )
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- Tips are optional: MoneyLion does not charge any mandatory fees for your cash advances, although you may tip for the service.
- Pay for speed: MoneyLion doesn’t charge for “regular delivery,” but if you need money in a hurry, you can pay for “instant” delivery. The app charges 3 3.99 for this type of transfer to one of your RoarMoney accounts or 4 4.99 to an external checking account or debit card.
- Loan Amounts: The amount of money you approve for an advance depends on the activity in your linked checking account. Larger deposits generally mean larger advance amounts (minimum is $25). The app also says that you can increase your Instacash limit by switching your direct deposits to MoneyLion.
- Want to learn more about MoneyLion’s Credit Building Loan? Read our full MoneyLion review.
Best for Banking: MoneyLion
Instant loans. Why Branch Stands Out: Not only does Branch allow you to request cash advances for hours you’ve already worked , the company offers fee-free checking accounts, debit cards, and ATM withdrawals at more than 40,000 locations.
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- Eligibility Requirements: To use Branch Pay to get a cash advance, you must have at least two months of direct deposits from the same employer. Each deposit must be greater than 440 and deposited into the same bank account at a participating bank.
- Cash advance limits: The amount of money you can request for a cash advance is based on two things: your bank account’s direct deposit history and how much you spend compared to what you earn. When you first start using the app, Branch says your cash advance limit will be low. But as you use the app over time and pay your advances, your limit may increase.
- Fees and interest: The branch does not charge interest on cash advances, and its fees vary depending on how you choose to receive the money. You can get “instant” access for free when money is sent to your Branch debit card. Standard delivery to an external bank account or debit card, which should take three days, is also free. But if you want your money sent to an external bank account or debit card right away, Branch will charge you a fee of $2.99 to $4.99, depending on the amount you transfer.
Best to help you track your finances: Brigit
Instant loans. Why Brigit Stands Out: Brigit can advance between $50 and $250, but you’ll need to pay $9.99 per month for their Brigit Plus plan to qualify for instant “transfers” and other features. Available on Android and Apple devices, the app stands out for its budgeting tools that help you track your spending and its “Brigit score” model. Your Brigit Score ranges from 0 to 100 and measures three metrics of financial wellness: bank account health , spending behavior, and earnings profile. You will need a Brigit Score of at least 70 to be approved for Brigit Instant Cash.
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- No Interest or Tips – Unlike Earnin and Dave, Brigit doesn’t ask for tips when she borrows money. The company will also not conduct a credit check. But keep in mind that if you pay for a Brigit Plus membership, the money is not free of charge.
- Eligibility Requirements: Brigit requires that you have at least three recurring deposits from the same employer to qualify.
- Not compatible with all banks: Brigit says it works with over 6,000 banks and credit unions, but that’s no guarantee it will work with yours. The company notes that it does not yet support Chime Bank, Capital One, Net Spend, or Varo.
- Automatic Advances Available: Brigit will analyze your checking account spending habits to predict if your balances are low and you’re in danger of overdrawing. Its “Automatic Advances” feature will transfer money to your bank account automatically to prevent an overdraft from occurring.
What you should know about apps that lend money
A number of money-lending apps allow you to borrow small amounts against your next paycheck. Since these apps typically charge lower fees than payday lenders, one of these apps may be a good option if you’re in a pinch and need some extra cash to bridge the gap until you get paid .
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But before you borrow money from an app or a traditional lender, it’s important to compare interest rates, fees and terms and figure out what you can afford.
If you’re having trouble paying your bills, getting a high-interest loan or cash advance application with a monthly fee isn’t a long-term solution. Instead, try negotiating with lenders, utilities, and other companies for a lower interest rate or work out a payment plan.