Do you have a bad credit score? Well, we understand that not-so-ideal credit history can be an obstacle in your way of acquiring a loan.
However, this doesn’t mean that your bad credit score should stop you from applying for an installment loan.
In this guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about guaranteed installment loans for bad credit, their requirements, and how you can apply for one.
What Does a Guaranteed Loan Mean?
Literally speaking, there’s no such thing as a guaranteed loan. There’s always a chance that your loan application could get rejected for one reason or another, even if you have the best credit history in the world.
However, for candidates with bad credit, some loan types could be easier to acquire than others. In that case, “guaranteed” doesn’t mean a 100% chance of getting approved, but a “better” chance.
What Is a Guaranteed Installment Loan for Bad Credit?
As the name implies, a guaranteed installment loan for bad credit is simply a type of loan where you borrow a lump sum amount of money from a lending entity and pay it back over a fixed loan term.
So, how can you borrow such a loan with poor credit? Well, not all lending entities care that much about your credit score. Often, people opt for these loans to rebuild their credit. You can think of a bad credit installment loan as a chance for you to improve your credit score.
It’s worth noting, however, that all lending entities are obligated by law to assess an individual’s ability to repay the loan, which includes checking their credit score.
This means if a lending entity claims that they won’t check your credit score, it can mean one of two things: either they’re lying, or you’re dealing with a loan shark.
Loan sharks take advantage of your need for money and make you sign up for high-value loans that you can’t afford to repay. This will either lead you to sell your assets or even spend jail time if you default on the loan.
So, before signing anything with a lending entity, make sure they have a good reputation and that you can trust them.
What Is Considered Bad Credit?
As a general rule of thumb, a credit score that is below 579 is considered poor, while a credit score between 579 and 669 is regarded as “fair.” Anything over 670 is considered a good credit score.
However, keep in mind that different lending entities have different rules on what classifies as bad credit, but the differences are usually not very significant.
How to Know Your Credit Score
The only way to know your credit score is to get a copy of your credit report from any of the 3 national credit bureaus. You’re eligible for one free copy annually, but you can get another one at extra fees.
Bad Credit Installment Loans Requirements
Here are the general requirements needed to apply for a bad credit installment loan:
- To be 18 years old or older
- To be a citizen or permanent resident of the United States
- To have a stable job with regular income
Some lenders may have extra requirements, and it’s important that you inquire about them before applying for the loan.
Lending Entities That Offer Installment Loans for Bad Credit
Let’s take a quick look at the different lending entities that may have installment loans for bad credit:
For people with bad credit, online lenders are the best option. You can check loan aggregator websites to look for suitable loans for your credit score and preferred terms or interest rates.
One of the advantages of borrowing money online is that the whole process usually takes less time than what it would take when borrowing from other lending entities.
So, if you need to get the cash transferred to your account as soon as possible, consider applying for a loan from an online lender. Just make sure that it’s a legit lender, not some type of scam website.
While many banks don’t grant loans for individuals with bad credit, some of them do, especially if you’ve been a customer at the bank for a significant amount of time. Oh, and if you have a certificate of deposit at the bank, you can get a percentage of that deposit as a loan.
If you’re a member of a credit union, you have a good chance of getting accepted for a loan, even if your credit score is nothing to brag about.
How to Apply for Installment Loan
Applying for an installment loan isn’t that complicated, especially if you opt for an online lending entity. All you have to do is fill the application form and submit the required e-documents (if needed).
The documents that you might need to submit include bank statements and proof of income.
6 Best Guaranteed Installment Loans for Bad Credit in 2021
Finding a lender that offers the best installment loans will definitely require some time and effort on your side.
But guess what? We’ve done the research for you and shortlisted some of the best guaranteed installment loans for bad credit that you can apply for right now. Let’s check them out!
We’re kickstarting our list with one of the most popular loan aggregator websites across the country: cashUSA.com. The website lets you search for lenders that accept loan candidates with poor credit. You can apply for loans as low as $500, all the way up to $10,000.
Once you apply for the loan, you should expect to receive a decision on your application within a few minutes. If approved, you’ll receive the money in your account within a day or two.
However, keep in mind that you must have a monthly income of at least $1,000. Also, you need an active email address, bank account, and phone number.
CreditLoan was founded in 1998, and it has served 750,000 customers. It allows you to borrow loans ranging from $250 to $5,000.
After your loan is approved, expect to get a notification that the money has been transferred to your as soon as the following day.
3. Money Mutual
Money mutual offers short-term installment loans for individuals. The maximum amount of money that you can borrow is $2,500.
So, what makes Money Mutual stand out from the crowd? Well, for starters, its application process is one of the fastest and easiest around. It shouldn’t take you more than 5 minutes to finish your application.
What’s even better is that you’ll get a decision on your application within just 24 hours of submitting it.
The company has been around since 2010, and since then, it has helped more than 2 million customers effortlessly borrow money. The only downside is that Money Mutual isn’t available for borrowers in New York or Connecticut.
BadCreditLoans have a wide array of short-term loan offerings that are as low as $500 and as high as $10,000. The terms are usually from 3 to 72 months, depending on several variables like your creditworthiness and the loan’s interest rate.
The company was founded in 1998, and it has established itself as one of the most trustful loan aggregator websites in the country.
CashAdvanced has been around for a little over 2 decades. It makes it easier for borrowers to search for lenders based on their needs.
Dealing with the website is pretty easy. All you have to do is submit a free-of-charge online form and wait for the approval. You can apply for loans ranging from $100 to $1,000.
If your credit score is terrible and you need a large loan, PersonalLoans.com should be at the top of your list. It allows you to borrow as much as $35,000, with the minimum being $1,000.
The loan terms range from 90 days to 72 months, depending on the loan amount and your credit score. It’s also worth noting that you can find lenders on PersonalLoans.com that offer interest rates as low as 5.99%, which isn’t that much when it comes to bad credit installment loans.
The application process is as hassle-free as it can get. Just fill in the required information on the online application form, click submit, and wait for a response. Once approved, the money will be deposited into your account within 24 hours.
Business Loan Providers
Apart from lenders that provide personal installment loans for bad credit, some lenders offer dedicated bad credit installment loans for businesses. Here are some of the best around:
Kabbage helps small businesses get things going with a range of loan offerings that suit all needs. You can get a credit line as high as $250,000 for your business. However, you must be compliant with Kabbage’s requirements, which are:
- The business must be at least 1 year old at the time of the application
- Meet the minimum revenue requirements set by Kabbage at the time of applying
The loan terms usually don’t exceed 12 months, which is somewhat inflexible for business owners who need long-term loans.
StreetShares offers loans up to $100,000 for businesses that need to overcome their current hurdles.
StreetShares have some requirements for accepting applications. For instance, your business must be at least 1 year old. Also, you need to meet the company’s minimum revenue rules.
It’s also worth noting that StreetShares lets you apply for pre-approval. It gives you the opportunity to get a clearer picture of where you currently stand and whether you should explore other options. What’s more, pre-approval increases your chances of getting your loan approved later on.
Typically, the loan terms at StreetShares range from 6 months all the way up to 36 months.
Just like Kabbage, QuarterSpot targets small businesses that need money to fund their projects. You can borrow a maximum amount of $200,000, depending on your company’s creditworthiness.
What’s more, your business must be at least 1 year old and meet QuarterSpot’s minimum revenue requirements at the time of the application to become eligible for the loan.
On a side note, QuarterSpot only accepts applications from businesses with a minimum FICO score of 550. We like that the company is transparent about its credit score requirement as it boasts trust.
As for the loan term, it typically ranges from 6 to 18 months depending on lots of factors that include the loan’s value and the business’ monthly revenue and credit score.
Choosing the Right Installment Loan For Your Needs
A loan is a long-term commitment, which is why you need to take the time to weigh the risks and benefits, as well as decide on several factors, like:
The loan term is the time span over which you’re going to repay the loan. Most lenders offer 12-month, 24-month, and 36-month loan terms. Some loans can even have terms that last up to 10 years.
Many lenders are quite flexible when it comes to loan terms, but it all depends on the value of the loan and how bad your credit history is.
If you opt for a short-term loan, the monthly installments will be high. On the other hand, a longer term means that your installments will be smaller, but they’re usually associated with higher interest rates.
APR (Annual Percentage Rate)
The Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is the interest rate that you have to pay when you take a loan, in addition to any other extra charges like annual fees.
Typically, bad credit installment loans have a high APR, but you can still get a good deal if you research carefully.
Pros and Cons of Installment Loans
Here’s a quick overview of the advantages and disadvantages of guaranteed installment loans:
Because of the fixed term and payment schedule, installment loans are very predictable.
When you sign up, you’ll be informed about the exact amount you need to pay every month during the term’s duration.
There are no surprises here, but make sure that you’re fully aware of any extra fees, like origination and late payment fees.
Once you settle the loan’s amount, you’ll no longer be committed to making any monthly payments to the lending entity.
Installment loans are great for credit rebuilding. By making your payments on time, you can give your credit score a boost. It’s estimated that 35% of your credit score is based on your ability to make your loan payments on time.
By improving your credit, you’ll be able to apply for better loans with more flexibility when it comes to choosing the most suitable terms. You’ll also get the opportunity to be a cardholder. Buying or renting a new house will also be easier if your creditworthiness is good enough.
Additionally, an installment loan will add more diversity to your credit report. Creating a “mix of credit” will improve your credit score even further.
Just make sure that whichever lender you opt for reports to the three national credit bureaus about your payment history.
Also, pay attention to your debt-to-limit ratio. This ratio is basically your outstanding debt divided by the total credit limits of your loans, and it’s a big contributor when it comes to your creditworthiness.
For instance, if your total debt is $4,000 and your combined credit limit is $10,000, then your debt-to-limit ratio is 40%, which is a good number. Ideally, you’d want your debt-to-limit ratio to be somewhere between 1-20%.
No Need For a Guarantor
When your credit history isn’t at its best, the lending entity may require that a guarantor with a higher credit score cosigns the agreement with you. The guarantor must be an immediate family member.
However, even if one of your immediate family members agrees on becoming a guarantor, this won’t be your best option. Why? Because this is no joke. If you failed to make your payments on time, you might risk damaging your relationship with the guarantor because you’re putting them at risk with you.
Doesn’t Require a High Credit Score
The most obvious perk of a guaranteed installment loan is that you can apply for it no matter how bad your credit score is. These loans are actually targeted towards individuals who are trying to mix up their credit and improve their payment history.
Doesn’t Require Collateral
Many lenders won’t agree on lending money to people with bad credit unless they provide collateral.
Providing collateral like your property can be risky because there’s a chance that the lending entity would claim the property if you default on the loan.
You Get a Lump Sum Amount of Money Upfront
Once your installment loan is approved, the money will be transferred to your account right away.
High Interest Rates
High interest fees are inevitable with bad credit installment loans. It’s how the lender makes money, so there’s no going around it.
The problem is that the worse your credit score is, the higher the interest rate will be. You might be wondering why; well, there are two reasons for that.
First, your bad credit score is a reason for the lender to trust you less with the loan. There’s no real guarantee that you can repay the loan amount back based on your poor credit history.
Second, lenders are obligated to make the loans less attractive for you because of your creditworthiness. When you see that the interest rate is sky high, you’ll probably rethink the whole loan thing all over.
The good news is that if you make your payments on time and repay the loan’s amount in full, you’ll become eligible for loans with lower interest rates.
Some Lenders Have a Long Application Process
This one primarily depends on the lender you choose, but some lending entities can actually take weeks until they process your loan and give you a decision on it. This can be a big problem if you need the money quickly for an emergency or something.
Inflexibility With the Loan’s Value
One of the biggest downsides of installment loans, or any other type of loan, is that you can’t change the loan’s value down the line, unlike credit cards, where you can borrow more money if you need to.
Once you borrow the money, there’s no going back. You can’t decide out of the blue that you need to borrow more or less money.
Application and Origination Fees
Almost all guaranteed installment loans will have some extra charges that usually consist of application and origination fees. There are also special charges like early and late fees.
Installment Loan Alternatives
An installment loan isn’t the only way you can borrow money. Here are some of the best alternatives:
Apply for a Credit Card
One of the biggest advantages of being a cardholder is that your credit card will always be there in your pocket, ready for you to use whenever you need to. This makes credit cards favorable for emergency use when you need to get the money as quickly as possible.
It’s also worth noting that credit cards usually have a grace period, within which you can pay your statement at no extra fees. However, the grace period never exceeds 55 days.
Also, keep in mind that you can always ask the credit card issuer to make your payments in installments. This is the default, anyway, but informing the issuer that you’re going to repay the money back over a specific period of time will grant you lower interest.
On the flip side, credit cards are often associated with high interest rates and charges that include annual, foreign transactions, and late payment fees. Not to mention, if you withdraw cash with your credit card instead of buying goods at an official merchant, you’ll have to pay considerable withdrawal fees.
Get a Payday Loan
A payday loan can be a solid option for you if you have a job with a regular source of income. Payday loans don’t require a high credit score, but they can make you drown in debt if you don’t use them wisely.
Not to mention, making regular payday loans will take away a part of your monthly payroll, which can affect your ability to pay for other necessities.
Suppose you need the money for a medical emergency or any other humanitarian cause. In that case, you can get in touch with your local charities and non-profit organizations to see if they can help you with your situation.
Just make sure that you’re 100% honest about the reason why you need the money and provide proof in case of medical emergencies.
Borrow From a Friend or Family Member
If you can borrow from a close person in your circle of family or friends, then, by all means, do it. Borrowing from a person is much better than borrowing from a lending entity because you won’t have to pay any extra fees when repaying the loan.
If you do opt for this option, make sure that you’re fully clear about why you need the money and how or when you’re going to repay it back. You don’t want to hurt your relationship with the person because of that.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Get a Loan With a 450 Credit Score?
Yes, you can get a loan with a 450 credit score, despite the fact that it’s classified as “poor credit.” However, you won’t likely find loans with low interest rates and fees.
If you really need the money, make sure that you explore multiple options and pick the lender that offers the lowest interest rates and annual charges.
Are Installment Loans Different From Payday Loans?
Yes, installment loans are completely different from payday loans. An installment loan is when you borrow a lump sum amount of money and pay it back in installments over a specific term.
On the other hand, a payday loan is a loan that basically lets you borrow a percentage of your monthly income before the end of the month.
Generally speaking, installment loans are much higher in value, as opposed to payday loans that are usually smaller. It’s also worth noting that payday loans usually have shorter terms than installment loans.
Can You Get an Installment Loan With No Credit Check?
Yes, you can apply for an installment loan that doesn’t require a credit check. However, we would advise you against applying for such loans.
Lenders that don’t assess your creditworthiness should be avoided because they won’t give you a fair interest rate based on your credit score.
What Is the Easiest Loan to Get Approved For?
Secured loans are usually the easiest to get because the lender is guaranteed to get their money back one way or another. In a secured loan, the borrower must provide collateral in exchange for getting approved for the loan.
Installment loans are a close second. While installment loans aren’t as easy to get approved for as secured loans, they have less strict requirements than many other types of loans.
Usually, your bad credit shouldn’t be that much of a problem when you apply for a guaranteed installment loan.
Are Installment Loans Bad?
From a broad point of view, installment loans aren’t bad. Though, it depends on the terms of the loan you’re signing up for.
Ideally, when applying for an installment loan, you need to make sure that the interest rate and the extra fees are within the acceptable range for your specific case.
If you have bad credit, it’s inevitable that whichever installment loan you’re applying for will have higher-than-average interest rates and charges, but some lenders may take advantage of your situation and raise the interest rate too high. Your best bet is to compare multiple loan providers and choose the one that has the lowest rates and fees.
You should also factor in the loan’s term. Try to pick a loan with shorter loan terms if your income allows it. Typically, the shorter the loan term, the lower the interest rate.
Can You Have Multiple Installment Loans?
Well, you can, but for someone with bad credit, it would be a terrible idea. When you’re in the process of rebuilding your credit, it’s important that you take it slow to avoid making things even worse.
Your credit score is already in bad shape, and you don’t want to risk lowering it even more, or even worse, drown yourself in debt and get into severe complications.
Side note: your chances of getting approved for multiple installment loans at the same time are slim if you have a bad credit score. Nevertheless, as we’ve mentioned, it’s not really a wise move.
Do Installment Loans Have Variable APRs?
Yes, some installment loans have variable APRs. We don’t really think you should go for an installment loan with an unpredictable APR, though. Your best bet is to get an installment loan with a fixed APR so you can plan out how you’ll repay the loan.
How Do I Calculate My Monthly Payment Value?
Most of the time, the lender will inform you about how much you’re going to pay every month over the loan’s term. But you can still calculate the monthly payments yourself if you already know the APR and the loan’s term using an online loan calculator.
To recap, a guaranteed installment loan for bad credit can get you out of tricky situations. The application process is usually straightforward, and if you choose a trustful lender, you don’t have to worry about falling prey to mountains of debt.
However, it’s essential that you pay your installments on a regular basis to avoid any late fees, or even worse, do more damage to your credit score.
Take it as an opportunity for you to rebuild your credit score so that you can apply for better loans in the future.