Fast payday loans up to $1,000

Emergency Loans | Quick & Easy Loans

Lauren Haas

Lauren Haas is a freelance writer who covers personal finance, health, and business topics. She’s a serial entrepreneur who enjoys travel, dance, and yoga.

When you’re coping with an emergency, such as a medical trauma, car trouble, or lost job, the stress can be unbearable. Since most families don’t have enough savings to cover unexpected expenses, you probably have financial anxiety layered on top of that stress.

Emergency loans are quick and easy loans that relieve the financial pressure so you can focus on dealing with the crisis.

What Is an Emergency Loan

In an emergency, people usually need small loans (under $1,000) without a long wait or a lot of paperwork.

Emergency loans are designed to put money in your hands as fast as possible. These loans often feature instant approval, and the funds can be deposited to your account within a day or two.

How to Get an Emergency Loan

Here are some of your choices for quick and easy loans in a crisis:

  • Your local bank: If you have a good history with your bank or credit union, they may offer you a good deal and convenient repayments.
  • A personal loan from your credit card provider: Check the dashboard of your online account — you may find personal loan offers there. If not, call your provider and ask.
  • A credit card cash advance: If your credit card doesn’t offer a personal loan but you have credit available, you can take a cash advance instead. The costs could easily be more than double what you’d pay for a personal loan, though, so try that option first.
  • An online lender: There are online lenders for every situation. Your credit score will determine who you can work with and the rate you’ll be offered.
  • A payday lender: These are local or online lenders who charge a very high rate of interest and expect to be repaid quickly.
  • A car title lender: Similar to a payday lender, but they hold your car’s title as collateral for the loan. This is also a very expensive option.

What Documents Do I Need?

One advantage to working with your own bank or credit card company is that you won’t have to provide as much documentation.

For instance, if you qualify for a personal loan from your credit card provider, you can apply online and they might not request any documents. A credit card cash advance through an ATM doesn’t even require an application, if you have credit available. If you borrow from a bank where you already have a relationship, they may not require any documents either.

In most cases, you will need:

  • Identification, such as a state ID or driver’s license
  • Proof of income (paycheck stubs, tax forms, etc)
  • If you’re using an item for collateral you’ll need proof of ownership (car title, savings account statements, etc)

What If I Need An Emergency Loan Today?

When people need immediate cash, they often turn to payday lenders or car title loans for solutions Unfortunately, the high rates and severe terms of those lenders can put people into an even deeper hole. It’s not unusual for people who are struggling financially to get pulled into a devastating pattern of continually needing another loan to repay the last one.

A cash advance on a credit card through an ATM is high-interest as well, but with more forgiving terms. You can usually withdraw up to $200-400 per ATM, and you may be able to visit more than one ATM in a day, depending on your card agreement. If you don’t have credit available, but you have a history of on-time payments, request a credit line increase.

There are online lenders who offer same-day funding as well. Lightstream and Alliant CU are two of the most popular, and both have good reputations in the industry.

How Does It Work

See which of these options fits your needs:

  • Personal Loan: Bring your ID and proof of income to your lender (or upload them with your online application). You’ll usually have approval and funding in a day or two.
  • Business Loan: You may be able to borrow against your business’s assets or accounts receivable. The SBA may also be able to help you.
  • Rent Loan: If you’re not able to cover basic expenses, you may be able to get help from a church or local government. If not, follow the Personal Loan procedures.
  • Veteran Loan: If you are a veteran, check with your VA office for lending options or hardship assistance.
  • Student Loan: Many colleges offer emergency loans to students. Call your school’s financial aid office to find out what’s available.
  • No Job (Unemployed) Loan: If you own your home, your bank may provide you with a home equity line of credit even while you’re unemployed. If you have a regular source of income (disability, social security, unemployment), you can use that to apply for a personal loan. A co-signer can help you qualify if you’re not able to get a loan on your own.
  • Medical Loan: Apply for a medical loan the same way you would a personal loan. Keep in mind that you may be able to negotiate monthly payments directly with your healthcare providers to avoid paying interest.
  • Financial Aid: If you are not making enough money to cover your expenses, you may want to take advantage of government programs to help you with housing, food, medical care, and education. Many people find it hard to ask for help, but a few months of assistance can be all you need to get your finances under control again.

Can I Get an Emergency Loan With Bad Credit?

Many online lenders specialize in bad credit loans. These lenders will charge high rates to offset the risk they’re taking, but the repayment terms will be more manageable than a payday or car title lender.

How to Apply For Emergency Loan Right Now

If you have a good relationship with your bank or credit union, call them and ask if they can offer you a small unsecuredl loan. If your bank can’t help you, check with your credit card providers for personal loan offers.

If both of those options fail, consider an online lender. Here are some of the industry leaders:

If you’re not able to qualify for a loan, but you have available credit on a card, consider a cash advance through an ATM.

If those options fail, then you may need to visit a payday or car title lender. Make sure you have a plan for repayment so you don’t get caught in a cycle of dependency on these lenders.

As soon as your emergency is resolved, start planning to build up a savings fund so you won’t be knocked off course by unexpected events next time.