Installment Loans for Bad Credit

Bad credit can feel like a burden that prevents you from securing the funds that you need. As you search for an installment loan to meet your financial needs, you might feel discouraged by your lack of options.

However, that doesn’t have to be the case. Many lenders are willing to provide online installment loans even if you have bad credit. Read on to find out more about your options.

Best Installment Loans for Bad Credit

Although none of these lenders are guaranteed to provide you with an installment loan, many will likely be willing to work with you. Check out these lenders that may be able to help you get an installment loan with bad credit.


LetMeBank’s rating
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  • Loan Amount
    Up to $5,000
  • Loan Term
  • APR

Features & Benefits

  • Application takes less than 5 minutes
  • Get a decision on your loan within minutes
  • Funds are available within 24 hours
  • Trusted by more than 2,000,000 borrowers

MoneyMutual is an online marketplace of lenders. They make it quick and easy to find a short-term cash advance loan in as little as 24 hours.

One application can potentially get you multiple loan offers. MoneyMutual has been trusted by more than two million customers. They serve borrowers with bad credit from all 50 states except New York and Connecticut.

LetMeBank’s rating
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  • Loan Amount
    $500 – $10,000
  • Loan Term
    3 – 60 months
  • APR
    5.99% – 35.99%

Features & Benefits

  • No cost to check loan approval
  • High approval rate despite credit history
  • Funds available as soon as next business day
  • Assisting people with bad credit since 1998

Bad Credit Loans is an online lender marketplace that allows you to connect with multiple lenders by filling out a single application. The service is 100% free.

Once you’re approved, your lender will provide you with the APR, loan fees, and other terms.

Read through the terms, compare all the offers you’ve received, and only accept the loan you’re most comfortable with. You are not obligated to accept the personal loan from any lenders that you are matched with.


LetMeBank’s rating
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  • Loan Amount
    Up to $10,000
  • Loan Term
    3 – 72 months
  • APR
    5.99% – 35.9%

Features & Benefits

  • Flexible borrower requirements
  • Loan request can be approved within minutes
  • Money deposited as early as 1 business day
  • All credit types accepted

CashUSA connects borrowers with lenders. Each application is sent to the lender most likely to lend to the borrower. This platform caters to a diverse range of credit profiles, making it more than just a broker for those with poor credit.

Interest rates vary depending on the lender, so make sure you read through the terms for each emergency loan before you choose. Applying online only takes a few minutes, and funds are often available the next day.


LetMeBank’s rating
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  • Loan Amount
    $2,000 – $35,000
  • Loan Term
    24 to 60 months
  • APR
    As low as 9.95%

Features & Benefits

  • Fast approval
  • Funds available next business day
  • Trusted by over 600,000 satisfied customers
  • No prepayment fees

Avant is a direct lender that specializes in borrowers with bad credit. Loans are frequently used to consolidate debt, but Avant’s shorter-term loans also work for financial emergencies.

Most users report an average of a 12-point increase in their credit score within six months of taking out a loan. An installment loan that reports to the credit bureaus can be an effective way to repair your credit each month.

Credit Loan

LetMeBank’s rating
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  • Loan Amount
    $250 – $40,000
  • Loan Term
  • APR

Features & Benefits

  • Funds deposited directly into your account
  • Get money as soon as the next business day
  • Loans for poor credit or good credit
  • More than 750,000 customers since 1998

CreditLoan works with many borrowers to find the best match for their situation. Although CreditLoan is not a direct lender, the platform can help you find a lender that is willing to work with you.

With CreditLoan, you might be able to secure a small loan to cover your needs. The company is generally successful in finding a lender match. With over 750,000 loans funded by CreditLoan, you have a great shot at finding the perfect match.


LetMeBank’s rating
Apply Now
  • Loan Amount
    $1,000 to $10,000
  • Loan Term
  • APR

Features & Benefits

  • Poor credit or little credit history is OK
  • Excellent customer reviews
  • No prepayment penalties
  • Only available in 37 states

NetCredit is a direct lender that might be able to fund your needs quickly. Plus, if you change your mind about the loan, you will be able to return it within one business day.

If your needs can be covered with a loan of $10,000 or less, then you should consider working with NetCredit. They also offer lines of credit to customers in some states.

What is an installment loan?

An installment loan is a type of loan that provides borrowers with a fixed amount of money that must be repaid through regular payments over a predetermined period. These differ significantly from other types of loans such as payday loans, which require quick repayment in full by your next payday, and revolving credit lines like credit cards, which allow ongoing borrowing up to a set limit.

Benefits of Installment Loans for Individuals with Bad Credit

For those with bad credit, installment loans can offer several distinct advantages:

Manageable Payments Over Time

The structured nature of installment loans offers predictable payments spread over time, which can be easier to manage within a tight budget. This setup avoids the stress of having to pay a large sum all at once, which is often the case with other types of short-term loans.

Potential for Credit Improvement

Making consistent, on-time payments toward an installment loan can positively influence your credit score. This is because regular positive entries to your credit report reflect well on your financial responsibility, slowly rebuilding your creditworthiness.

Access to Needed Funds Despite Low Credit Scores

Installment loans are often more accessible to individuals with poor credit than traditional loans from banks. Lenders who specialize in bad credit loans typically use other factors such as income and employment stability to assess your ability to repay, rather than just your credit score. This provides an essential lifeline for obtaining necessary funds when options seem limited.

Key Risks and Considerations for Installment Loans

When considering installment loans, especially for those with bad credit, it’s important to be aware of the potential drawbacks and necessary precautions.

Higher Interest Rates and Fees

Installment loans for bad credit often come with elevated interest rates and additional fees. This is because lenders view borrowers with lower credit scores as higher risks. It’s crucial to compare these costs among different lenders to ensure you receive the most favorable terms possible.

Avoiding Debt Cycles

The ease of access to installment loans can sometimes lead borrowers into a cycle of debt, especially if they continually take out new loans to pay off previous ones. It’s vital to plan financially to prevent falling into this trap, which can exacerbate financial difficulties rather than relieve them.

The Importance of Reading the Loan Agreement Thoroughly

Before agreeing to any loan terms, thoroughly review the entire agreement. Understanding all the terms and conditions, such as penalties for late payments and the rules regarding loan rollover, is essential. Seeking clarification on any confusing points can prevent unpleasant surprises later.

Eligibility Criteria for Installment Loans with Bad Credit

Obtaining an installment loan with bad credit involves meeting certain lender requirements, which typically focus more on your ability to repay rather than solely on your credit score.

Common Requirements

Most lenders will require proof of identity, a checking account, and a consistent income source. They may also check your credit history to determine the loan terms they are willing to offer, even if bad credit is acceptable.

Importance of Proof of Income and Employment

Demonstrating stable employment and a regular income is crucial because it assures lenders that you have the means to repay the loan. Lenders often look at your debt-to-income ratio as well—a low ratio can improve your chances of approval by showing that you aren’t already overwhelmed by other financial obligations.

How to Compare Installment Loans for Bad Credit

When seeking an installment loan, especially with bad credit, comparing different lenders and loan offers is essential for finding the best terms.

Interest rates: Interest rates and the annual percentage rate (APR) are critical elements to consider. The APR includes the interest rate plus any additional fees charged by the lender, providing a more complete picture of the total cost of the loan per year. Comparing APRs from various lenders can help you identify the most cost-effective option.

Loan terms: Examining the loan terms, such as the length of the loan, payment amounts, and the total amount repayable, is crucial. Shorter loan terms usually have higher monthly payments but lower overall interest costs. Longer terms, while reducing monthly payments, increase the total interest paid over the life of the loan.

Lender reputation: Researching the lender’s reputation and reading customer reviews can offer insights into their reliability and the quality of service they provide. Reviews can also reveal how the lender handles customer complaints and issues, which can be a decisive factor in choosing a lender.

Alternatives to Installment Loans for Bad Credit

For those who might find traditional installment loans less appealing or not feasible, there are several alternatives worth considering:

Credit Unions and Community Banks

Credit unions and community banks often offer more favorable loan terms, especially for members and local residents. They may provide lower interest rates and more flexible loan terms compared to larger banks because they are nonprofit organizations that aim to serve their members.

Peer-to-Peer Lending Platforms

Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platforms connect borrowers directly with individual investors rather than traditional financial institutions. These platforms can offer more competitive rates and terms, especially for borrowers with better credit profiles. However, they are also an option for those with less-than-perfect credit.

Secured Loans and Co-signer Options

Secured loans require collateral, such as a vehicle or home equity, which can help obtain better lending terms due to the reduced risk to the lender. Alternatively, having a co-signer with a strong credit history can also improve your loan terms. Both options can make credit more accessible and affordable.

Bottom Line

Securing an online installment loan can be a challenge. However, it is completely possible to find the funds you need without a big hassle. As you look for funding, you will notice that borrowers with good credit scores have more options with better interest rates. Consider working to improve your credit by paying down debt and paying your bills on time.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if I miss a payment on an installment loan?

If you miss a payment on an installment loan, it could lead to additional fees and negatively impact your credit score. Most lenders offer a grace period, so it’s important to communicate with your lender immediately if you anticipate difficulty with a payment. They may offer solutions like modified payment plans to help manage the situation.

Can I pay off my installment loan early?

Many installment loans allow early repayment without penalties, but this can vary by lender. It’s essential to review the terms of your loan agreement to understand if there are any prepayment penalties. Paying off a loan early can save on interest costs and positively affect your credit score.

How long does it take to get approved for an installment loan?

The approval time for an installment loan can vary significantly depending on the lender and the type of loan. Some online lenders might offer instant approval and can disburse funds as quickly as the same day or the next business day. Traditional banks and credit unions may take longer to process applications.

Are there any installment loans that don’t require a credit check?

Yes, some lenders offer installment loans without a credit check, but these loans often come with higher interest rates and fees. These lenders typically evaluate your employment history, income, and other financial commitments to assess your ability to repay the loan.

What’s the difference between a secured and an unsecured installment loan?

A secured installment loan requires collateral, such as a car or property, which the lender can seize if you fail to repay the loan. An unsecured loan does not require collateral, but generally has higher interest rates and stricter credit requirements due to the increased risk for the lender.