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Emergency loans to pay for rent

Here are 9 places to go to when you're worried about missing a rent payment.

Employed and need a loan? Compare personal loans
Unemployed and need a loan? Compare installment loans

Should I get a loan for rent?

While taking out a personal or short-term loan can help you cover rent, it’s not ideal; it can lead to a cycle of debt that could put you in a worse financial situation, especially if you can only qualify for expensive short-term loans.

Below are 9 ways to cover rent in an emergency, including rent loans and other alternatives.

9 ways to cover rent in an emergency

1. Personal loan

  • Best for: Renters with steady employment income who are temporarily unable to cover rent.

If you decide that applying for rent loans is the right step for you, below are online lenders that offer quick approval and funding.

Name Product Interest Rate Loan Amount Loan Term Requirements Credit Score Link
Spring Financial Personal Loan
Finder Rating: 4 / 5: ★★★★★
Spring Financial Personal Loan
17.99% - 46.96%
$500 - $15,000
9 - 48 months
Min. income of $1,800 /month, 3+ months employed
Min. credit score: 500
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An online lender offering unsecured personal loans and credit builder loans. If you're not eligible for an unsecured loan, you may be offered a loan to help rebuild your credit.
LoanConnect Personal Loan
LoanConnect Personal Loan
Secured from 1.90%, Unsecured from 5.75%-46.96%
$500 - $50,000
3 - 120 months
Currents debts must total less than 60% of income
Min. credit score: 300
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An online broker who helps inform clients towards better finances. Get pre-approved by different lenders for unsecured or secured loans in 5 minutes with any credit score.
Mogo Personal Loan
Finder Rating: 4.5 / 5: ★★★★★
OFFER
Mogo Personal Loan
9.90% - 46.96%
$200 - $35,000
6 - 60 months
Min. income of $13,000 /year
Min. credit score: 500


Mogo offers a 100-day money-back guarantee. If you're not happy with your loan, pay back the principal and get your 100 days of paid interest and fees back.
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An online lender who aims for a hassle-free process through same-day unsecured loan approval and funding. Get a loan fast and track your credit score for free.
SkyCap Financial Personal Loan
Finder Rating: 4.1 / 5: ★★★★★
SkyCap Financial Personal Loan
12.99% - 39.99%
$500 - $10,000
9 - 36 months
Min. income of $1,200 /month, stable employment
Min. credit score: 550
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An online lender offering unsecured personal loans to borrowers with a wide range of credit scores. Apply in less than 5 minutes and if approved, receive financing in as little as 24 hours.
Fairstone Unsecured Personal Loan
Finder Rating: 3.9 / 5: ★★★★★
Fairstone Unsecured Personal Loan
26.99% - 39.99%
$500 - $25,000
6 - 60 months
Able to make monthly repayments on your loan
Min. credit score: 560
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An online lender with a team dedicated to professional service. Get a quote for an unsecured loan without impacting your credit score. Receive funds within as little as 24 hours. No prepayment fees.
ConsumerCapital Personal Loan
Finder Rating: 3.2 / 5: ★★★★★
ConsumerCapital Personal Loan
19.99% - 34.99%
$1,500 - $12,500
24 - 60 months
Min. income of $1,900 /month, 6+ months employed, no payday loan debt
Min. credit score: 600
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An online lender that provides fast unsecured personal loans. Complete an application in less than 10 minutes and get a decision within 24 hours. For faster loan approval, complete the Flinks bank integration in the app.
Loans Canada Personal Loan
Loans Canada Personal Loan
Secured from 2.00%, Unsecured from 8.00% to 46.96%
$300 - $50,000
3 - 60 months
No min. income or employment requirements
Min. credit score: 300
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An online broker with the largest lender network in Canada. Get matched for free with lenders offering both unsecured and secured loans through one quick application regardless of your financial situation.
FlexMoney Personal Loan
Finder Rating: 4 / 5: ★★★★★
FlexMoney Personal Loan
18.90% - 46.93%
$500 - $15,000
6 - 60 months
Min. income of $2,000 /month, 3+ months employed
Min. credit score: 500
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An online lender offering flexible unsecured loans. Apply in less than 10 minutes and if approved, receive financing in as little as 24 hours. Pay off your loan at any time.
Loan Away Personal Loan
Finder Rating: 3.6 / 5: ★★★★★
Loan Away Personal Loan
19.90% - 45.90%
$1,000 - $5,000
6 - 36 months
No min. income or employment requirements
Min. credit score: 300
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A lender that approves unsecured loans in as little as 20 minutes. Get affordable monthly repayments with any credit score.
Cash Money Line of Credit
Cash Money Line of Credit
46.93%
$100 (in store), $500 (online) - $10,000
No end dates
No min. income or employment requirements
Min. credit score: 560
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Cash Money offers line of credit loans up to $10,000 for AB, BC, NL, NS, ON and SK residents. (Residents of MB or NB can apply in-store only.)
LendDirect Line of Credit
LendDirect Line of Credit
19.99% - 46.93%
$100 - $15,000
No end dates
Min. income of $1,500 /month
Min. credit score: 560
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Borrow up to $15,000, based on your income and credit history, with a line of credit from LendDirect.
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Personal loans allow you to borrow as little as $1,000 for almost any purpose. If you have good to excellent credit, you may be able to score a low interest rate. Loan terms typically last anywhere from 6 months to 5 years.

While paying interest on your rent isn’t ideal, this is a good option for borrowers experiencing temporary financial hardship, especially if you don’t qualify for local rental assistance programs.

How to apply for rent loans

You can easily apply for rent loans by following these steps:

Application process
  1. Fill out the application. Apply for a loan online or by visiting a lender in person. Most online applications take less than 10 minutes if you have all of the necessary information on hand.
  2. Input personal details. Provide personal information such as your full name, date of birth, address and contact information. You’ll also need to give details about your housing situation (rent vs. own and for how long).
  3. Wait for a response. Some lenders will give pre-approval within minutes. Pre-approval means the lender likes what it sees so far on your application and wants to proceed. It will discuss loan offers with you.
  4. Provide documents. If you want to proceed with the loan, provide documents that verify your income and identity. Examples include pay stubs, bank statements, driver’s licence and passport.
  5. Get approval. Once you get approval, review and submit the contract.
  6. Get funds. Get funds transferred to your bank account within 24 hours.
Loan eligibility requirements

To qualify for rent loans, you may need to meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years old or the age of majority in your province or territory.
  • Be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident with a valid Canadian address.
  • Meet the minimum credit score, which varies among lenders. Some lenders accept applicants with bad credit (below 560).
  • Meet the minimum income. This also varies among lenders.

2. Installment loans

  • Best for: Renters in between jobs but have other sources of regular income like employment insurance (EI) or Canada child benefit (CCB).

An installment loan has smaller loan amounts and shorter loan terms than the average personal loan. They may also come with high interest rates, so keep an eye out for those when comparing installment loans.

This loan has the same application process as a personal loan.

Compare installment loans

Name Product Interest Rate Loan Amount Loan Term Requirements Credit Score Link
Money Mart Installment Loan
OFFER
Money Mart Installment Loan
29.90% - 46.90%
$1,000 - $15,000
12 - 60 months
No min. income or employment requirements
Min. credit score: 300
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More Info
Get a $100 eGift card when you apply online, connect your bank account using Express and make your first payment. To be eligible for an installment loan, you’ll need to be at least 18 years of age with a steady source of income and a chequing account.
LoanConnect Installment Loan
LoanConnect Installment Loan
32.00%
$500 - $2,500
3 - 6 months
Currents debts must total less than 60% of income
Min. credit score: 300
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Get approved by different lenders in as little as 60 seconds with any credit score. Access resources to help you work toward better finances.
Loans Canada Installment Loan
Loans Canada Installment Loan
8.00% to 46.96%
$500 - $50,000
3 - 60 months
No min. income or employment requirements
Min. credit score: 300
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More Info
An online broker with the largest lender network in Canada. Get matched with lenders for free through one quick application regardless of your financial situation.
Cash Money Installment Loan
Cash Money Installment Loan
46.93%
$500 - $10,000
6 - 60 months
Stable source of income
Min. credit score: 560
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More Info
Cash Money offers installment loans up to $10,000 for Alberta, Manitoba and New Brunswick residents. Online installment loans are available in Alberta only. Residents of Manitoba and New Brunswick must apply in-store.
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3. Make a partial rent payment

  • Best for: Renters who are able to pay some, but not all of their rent.

Your landlord may be willing to accept a partial payment if you can prove you’ll be able to make up the rest of your rent later in the month. You might also want to ask whether a modified payment plan is an option if you expect your financial hardship to last for a few months.

If they agree to accept a partial payment or adjust your contract, get it in writing to avoid any issues down the road.

4. Short-term housing assistance

  • Best for: Renters who are experiencing long-term financial hardship.

Many cities, regions and provinces offer voucher programs that can help with short-term housing emergencies. This may mean all or a portion of your rent is paid, or it could be temporary relief from rent payments.

Visit your local housing authority or rental assistance programs in your province to go over your options and apply for aid.

5. Assistance from local charities

  • Best for: Renters who don’t meet the standards for government-based aid.

Charities and faith-based organizations may offer housing assistance if you’re unable to qualify for a government voucher program or need additional aid. This can include help paying rent or temporary housing if you’re facing eviction.

To find options available where you live, reach out to your local housing authority, as well as homeless ministries and charities in your area.

6. Family and friends

  • Best for: Renters with a strong support system who might be willing to help.

You might have someone in your corner willing to help cover rent. While not a long-term solution, it can help you make it through a financial rough patch without accruing late fees from multiple missed rent payments. Just clarify expectations first: determine when and how you’ll be able to repay your friend or family member to avoid straining your relationship.

7. Credit card

  • Best for: Renters with a high credit limit whose landlords accept credit card payments.

If your landlord allows it, you can use your credit card to cover your rent payment. This is especially helpful if you have a card that’s still under a 0% intro APR period. If you pay off the balance before the promotion is up, you won’t pay interest on your rent payment.

Otherwise, you might want to save this as a last resort, since most credit cards come with APRs that range anywhere from 16% to 29% — not to mention the credit card processing fee many landlords or management companies charge.

8. Credit card cash advance

  • Best for: Renters with a high credit limit whose landlords don’t accept credit card payments.

Although not ideal, a cash advance is typically less expensive than a short-term loan. If you have a credit card with a high-enough balance, you may be able to pay your rent with money withdrawn through a cash advance.

Just keep in mind this typically comes with a cash advance fee which is a percentage of the amount withdrawn, on top of the interest you’ll pay each month. And most credit card issuers limit the amount you can withdraw per day — typically anywhere from $100 to $1,000.

9. Payday loan

  • Best for: Renters with a steady source of income who’ve exhausted all other options.

If you’ve hit dead ends with every other option listed above, emergency payday loans can help you cover rent as a last resort. You’ll need to have a steady source of income to qualify — whether that’s through a job or government benefits — but generally, payday loans are the fastest and easiest type of loan to get approved for. You can get a payday loan with poor credit because lenders focus on your income instead.

But keep in mind this is also the most expensive type of loan, with APRs in the triple digits that can make repayments difficult to afford. Only take out a payday loan if you are certain you can pay it back in full by your next payday.

Compare payday loans

⚠️ Warning: Be cautious with payday loans
Payday loans are expensive. If you're experiencing financial hardship call Credit Counselling Canada for free financial counselling (Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:00pm at +1 866-398-5999). Consider alternatives instead of a payday loan:
  • Local resources. Government programs and nonprofits offer free financial services and help with food, utilities and rent.
  • Debt relief companies. There are services to help you reduce your debt payments.
  • Payment extensions. Talk with bill providers about longer payment plans or due-date extensions.
  • Side jobs. Sell unwanted items online, sign up for food delivery and more.
Name Product Loan Amount Loan Term Interest Rate Turnaround Time Serviced Provinces
Money Mart Payday Loan
$120 - $1,500
1 - 62 days
Varies by province
As little as 1 hour after getting approved
AB, BC, MB, NS, ON, SK
To be eligible, you’ll need to be at least 18 years of age with a steady source of income and a chequing account. No credit check required.
iCASH Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
7 - 62 days
Varies by province
As little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
AB, BC, MB, NB, NS, ON, PEI
Get up to 20% in cash back once your payday loan is fully repaid. Conditions apply.

To be eligible, you'll need to be at least 19 years of age and have a net income of at least $800/month deposited into your bank account.
Cash Money Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
5 - 40 days
Varies by province
As little as 15 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
BC, NL, NS, ON, SK
Apply for your first $300 payday loan at a $20 cost (excludes SK applicants).

You'll need to be 18 years of age or older and have a net income of at least $1,000/month. Residents of MB and NB must apply in-store for a loan.
GoDay Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
Up to 62 days
Varies by province
As little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
AB, BC, MB, NB, NS, ON, PEI, SK
To apply, you'll need to be a Canadian resident over the age of 18 with a valid email address, phone number and an open bank account with a Canadian bank or credit union.
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Maximum borrowing costs per province
Always refer to your contract for exact repayment amounts and costs as they may vary from our results.
Province Maximum allowable cost of borrowing
Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Ontario & Prince Edward Island $15 per $100 borrowed
Manitoba & Saskatchewan $17 per $100 borrowed
Nova Scotia $19 per $100 borrowed
Newfoundland and Labrador $21 per $100 borrowed
Northwest Territories, Nunavut & the Yukon $60 per $100 borrowed
Quebec Limit of 35% annual interest rate (AIR)

Rental relief available during the coronavirus outbreak

If you’re struggling to make rent payments because of the effects of the pandemic, you may be able to get help through provincial programs. See our guide on rent support during COVID-19 to see if there are special options in place for renters affected by the coronavirus where you live. Many provinces have declared a temporary freeze on rental evictions during this time.

For more resources, check out our guide to financial assistance during the coronavirus.

What are my rights as a tenant?

As a tenant of a rental property, you have the right to safe, livable housing. Your province may have special rules regarding eviction or rent nonpayment, so browse tenants’ rights laws by province to see what legal protections you have if you’re unable to make your rent.

How to avoid needing a loan for rent in the future

Although emergencies can feel inevitable, here are a few measures you can take to avoid needing a loan for rent in the future:

  • Enroll in government assistance programs. There are several provincial assistance programs — including subsidized housing, housing vouchers and public housing — you can turn to if the cost of living is too high for your current financial situation.
  • Sign up for credit counseling. If you consistently need to borrow to make ends meet, a credit counselor can help you create a budget and debt repayment plan.
  • Consider debt consolidation. Borrowing a loan for debt consolidation may help you combine some of your high-interest debts into one monthly payment. And for some people, it can reduce the amount you pay overall — easing the strain on your budget and making rent more affordable.
  • Get a roommate. If you have extra space in your house or apartment and your landlord approves, a roommate can help cut down on your rent and utility costs until your lease ends and you can find less-expensive housing.
  • Take on a second job. Though not always feasible, taking on a side gig or part-time job can help supplement your income if you aren’t bringing in enough to pay your bills.

I’ve been evicted. Can I use a loan to help?

Yes, you can use a loan to help cover rent if you’re facing eviction — but you might want to reach out to a lawyer to discuss your options first. They can help you determine whether your landlord violated any of your tenant rights during the eviction process. And they might be able to help you find an alternative way to cover your rent so you don’t need to borrow.

Bottom line

If you’re facing an emergency and don’t have enough money for rent, you might want to first look into housing assistance offered by government agencies and local charities, then consider our list of alternatives.

Still short on funds? Look into more payday loan alternatives before turning to your short-term loan options.

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