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Best installment loans of September 2020

Compare APRs, terms and eligibility requirements of 6 top lenders.

Updated

Fact checked
Installment loans are a type of short-term loan available to borrowers of all credit types. While they come with fewer eligibility requirements than your traditional personal loan, this comes at a price — rates can sometimes top 800% APR. Comparing different lenders you qualify with can help you find the best installment loan for your needs.

How we picked these providers

Our editorial team reviewed over 100 short-term loan providers to choose these top installment loans. We considered eligibility requirements, APRs and repayment flexibility, as well as customer reviews on sites like the Better Business Bureau and Trustpilot. We also looked at factors that might be important for different types of borrowers, such as the ability to consolidate high-interest debt.

6 best installment loans

LenderAPREligibility requirementsGo to site
OppLoans59% to 199%Direct deposit, meet minimum income requirements, live in eligible state
Go to site
OneMain18% to 35.99%Established credit history, US citizen or permanent resident, age of majority in your state
NetCredit34% to 155% (Varies by state)Must be 18+ years old, a legal resident of the US and have a Social Security number. Minimum credit score of 550.
HonestLoans200% to 2,290%Must be employed and receive regular income, earn at least $800 a month, have a checking account and be an 18+ years old legal US citizen.
Go to HonestLoans.net's site
CashUSA5.99% to 35.99%Regular source of income, bank account, US citizen or permanent resident, age of majority in your state
BlueTrust471.78% to 841.45%Must be at least 18 years old and have a verifiable source of income with direct deposit into your checking account.
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How our top picks compare

Best for flexible repayments: OppLoans

  • APRs: 59% to 199%
  • Loan amounts: $500 to $5,000
  • Terms: 9 to 24 months
  • Eligibility requirements: Direct deposit, meet minimum income requirements, live in eligible state

OppLoans offers terms on the longer side for a traditional installment loan, making it easier to afford monthly repayments. You also have the option to change your repayment date if it doesn’t work with your schedule, helping you avoid default. It reports on-time repayments to the major credit bureaus unless you live in Texas or Ohio, meaning the loan could help build your credit score.

But it’s not the cheapest option on this list, with APRs starting at 59%. This can make your loan particularly expensive if you go for the longest term.

Go to site

Best for backing your loan for a better rate: OneMain Financial

  • APRs: 18% to 35.99%
  • Loan amounts: $1,500 to $1,500
  • Terms: 24, 36, 48 or 60 months
  • Eligibility requirements: Established credit history, US citizen or permanent resident, age of majority in your state

OneMain financial specializes in personal loans open to most credit types with the option to provide collateral to qualify for a better rate. Though the rates are high for a personal loan, they’re competitive compared to other options available to fair- and poor-credit borrowers.

While you can apply online, this is one of the few lenders that requires a visit to your local branch to finalize the loan.

Best for building credit: NetCredit

  • APRs: 34% to 155% (Varies by state)
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $10,000
  • Terms: 6 to 60 months
  • Eligibility requirements: Must be 18+ years old, a legal resident of the US and have a Social Security number. Minimum credit score of 550.

NetCredit’s personal loans are designed for borrowers with less-than-perfect credit who also want to improve their personal finances. It reports payment activity to TransUnion and Experian, helping you improve your credit score with every on-time repayment. It also offers resources you can use to build your financial knowledge and health.

But like most loans geared toward poor-credit borrowers, NetCredit’s rates can get high. It’s also not available in all states.

Best for borrowing larger amounts with bad credit: HonestLoans

  • APRs: 200% to 2,290%
  • Loan amounts: $800 to $50,000
  • Eligibility requirements: Must be employed and receive regular income, earn at least $800 a month, have a checking account and be an 18+ years old legal US citizen.

This connection service might be a good resource if you’re looking to borrow more than $20,000 with bad credit — many installment loan providers don’t offer funding over this amount. It also has a relatively low income requirement, though you likely need to earn more to qualify for larger loan amounts.

Like any connection service, HonestLoans allows you to compare offers from multiple lenders at once. However, you might want to research the lenders you’re connected with to make sure they’re legit before you go through with the application.

Go to HonestLoans.net's site

Best for consolidating debt: CashUSA

  • APRs: 5.99% to 35.99%
  • Loan amounts: $1,000 to $10,000
  • Terms: 90 days to 72 months
  • Eligibility requirements: Regular source of income, bank account, US citizen or permanent resident, age of majority in your state

This connection service allows you to search for options specifically for debt consolidation, regardless of your credit score. While rates are high compared to personal loan providers, it could help you save on higher-interest installment loans or even some credit card debt, depending on the rate you qualify for. The long loan terms its partners offer can also help make your monthly repayments more affordable.

Like with HonestLoans, research any lender you get connected with before you go through with the application to make sure it’s legit.

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Best for repayments that line up with your pay schedule: Blue Trust Loans

  • APRs: 471.78% to 841.45%
  • Loan amounts: $100 to $2,500
  • Terms: Up to 9 months
  • Eligibility requirements: Must be at least 18 years old and have a verifiable source of income with direct deposit into your checking account.

This tribal lender offers small-dollar loans with repayments based on your pay schedule. It also offers some of the lowest loan amounts out there for an installment loan, though returning customers can qualify for higher amounts and longer terms.

However, it comes with the highest APRs of any other lender on this list — ranging from 472% to over 840%. And since Blue Trust is run by the Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians, it follows tribal regulations rather than state laws.

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Compare more installment loan providers

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Filter Values Max. Loan Amount Turnaround time Requirements
Fast5kLoans Short-term Loans Connection Service
$35,000
As soon as the next business day
Regular source of income, verifiable bank account, US citizen, ages 18+
Get connected with multiple lenders you might qualify with — even if you have bad credit.
 Check Into Cash Installment Loans
$3,000
1 to 2 business days
Bank account, email address, phone number, US citizen or permanent resident, ages 21+, $3,500 minimum income in California
Borrow money with lower payments and more time to pay than a traditional payday loan.
OppLoans Installment Loans
$5,000
1 business day
Direct deposit, meet minimum income requirements, live in eligible state
Comes with the option to change your due date so you won’t fall behind on repayments.
LendYou Short-term Loans
$15,000
Same business day to 1 business days
$1,000+ monthly income, direct deposit, US citizen or permanent resident, ages 18+
Get offers from potential lenders in minutes by filling out just one online form.
Possible Finance Mobile Installment Loans
$500
As fast as 1 business day
Checking account with 3+ months of banking history, $750+ monthly income, live in eligible state, ages 18+
Borrow up to $500 with just a few swipes — but only for residents of 5 states.
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Compare up to 4 providers

5 questions to help you find the best installment loan

There’s no one “best” installment loan. What’s right for you depends on your personal financial situation and what you need the money for. Ask yourself the following questions to find a lender that best meets your needs:

3 red flags to watch out for with installment loan providers

Not all installment loan providers are legit lenders, and even some that are can have predatory lending practices. Look out for these red flags when comparing installment loan providers:

  • Guarantees. Legit lenders won’t guarantee approval or certain rates before looking at your application.
  • Pushiness. Stay away from lenders that pressure you into borrowing more than you need.
  • Add-on insurance. Some lenders might encourage you to take out unnecessary insurance, such as a life insurance policy that names them as a beneficiary. This is a common tactic to make your loan more expensive while avoiding state APR regulations.

How to spot a predatory lender

Bottom line

Available to borrowers of all credit types, installment loans offer more affordable repayments than shorter term payday loans. But many still come with triple-digit APRs, which can add up fast if you get a long loan term. Check out our guide to installment loans to learn more about how this type of financing works.

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