Finder is committed to editorial independence. While we receive compensation when you click links to partners, they do not influence our content.
Legitimate payday loans
Here's how to find legit payday loans online.
⚠️ Warning: Be cautious with payday loansPayday 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.
Legitimate payday loans online
Below are some legit online payday loan companies who are provincially licensed and who abide by payday loan regulations. They are also members of the Canadian Consumer Finance Association. Before applying for a payday loan, make sure you understand your loan conditions, like interest rate and loan term. Also, consider other financing alternatives because a payday loan can easily lead to more debt if you’re not careful.
|Legit online payday loans||Serviced provinces||Max. loan amount||Turnaround time|
|Cash Money||BC, NS, ON, SK||$1,500||As little as 15 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer.|
|iCASH Payday Loan||AB, BC, MB, NB, NS, ON, PEI||$1,500||As little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer|
|GoDay Payday Loan||AB, BC, MB, NB, NS, ON, PEI, SK||$1,500||As little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer.|
|Cash 4 You Payday Loan*||Ontario||$1,500||In 60 minutes with funds deposited via INTERAC e-Transfer.|
|My Canada Payday payday loan*||Alberta
|$1,500||Funds will be sent immediately via INTERAC e-Transfer.|
|Money Mart Payday Loan*||Alberta
*Please note: All information about Money Mart, Cash 4 You and My Canada Payday has been collected independently by Finder and these loans are not available through this site.
What is a “legit” payday loan?
A “legit” payday loan is one that’s offered to you legally, meaning the lender abides by all the governmental regulations for features like maximum annual percentage interest rates (APRs), fees charged, borrowing limits and terms. Whether you apply for a payday loan online or in person at an outlet, they all fall under the same regulations.
Payday loan lenders typically have much more relaxed eligibility criteria than traditional lenders, like banks and credit unions. Even if you have bad credit, are on a lower income or receive government benefits, you’ll be able to apply for a payday loan. However, this relaxed service comes with much higher interest rates and fees than other types of loans.
7 features of legit payday loans
With so mane online payday loan providers on the market, it can be hard to know which ones are legit. Look out for these 7 characteristics of legit payday loan lenders.
Legitimate payday loans for people with bad credit
Payday loans are offered to people who cannot qualify for other types of loans, so by nature, borrowers with bad credit can get approved by payday lenders. Many online payday lenders mention on their websites that they won’t necessarily decline applicants with bad credit because they also look at other factors. As long as you have income, whether that’s employment or non-employment income, payday loans are accessible to borrowers with bad credit.
That said, make sure you know what you’re in for. Only get a payday loan after you’ve exhausted all alternatives and only if you’re certain you can repay it by your next payday. Also, be sure to check the legitimacy of online payday lenders by reading third-party reviews, checking business licences and seeing how transparent they are with their fees. Compare legitimate payday loans for bad credit.
Important: The “ability to repay” rule
Lenders must make a reasonable judgment on an applicant’s ability to repay the loan. The lender should assess factors such as income, living expenses and existing debt in order to determine if the applicant can reasonably repay the loan.
If a lender doesn’t ask you for any of that information or doesn’t attempt to evaluate if you can afford the loan, the lender probably isn’t legitimate.
Benefits of a legit payday loan
Legit payday loans will come with the following benefits:
- Abiding by provincial regulations. With legit payday loans, you don’t have to worry about lenders charging you more than the maximum limits allowed.
- Multiple options. You can get in touch directly with lenders of legitimate payday loans, or you can go through a loan-matching service.
- Bad credit is OK. Many lenders provide legit payday loans to people with bad credit, and while they may run a credit check, they focus more on your ability to pay the loan back instead.
- Quick access to funds. If you apply in person at a store, you can get cash almost as soon as a lender approves your application. When you apply online, the money is transferred into your bank account after you accept the loan contract, usually by the next business day.
- Use money for any reason. Legitimate payday lenders don’t place any stipulations on how you can use your loan, as long as you’re using the money for legitimate reasons.
Drawbacks of payday loans
Keep in mind that anytime you take out a payday loan there are risks, which include:
- You can enter a cycle of debt. Payday loans make it easier than ever to get into a cycle of debt. Avoid taking on more debt than you can handle and exercise caution throughout the loan process.
- Payday loans can be expensive. A short repayment period and high fees will mean you have to make much higher repayments. Alternatively, paying your loan off over a longer period of time will be more expensive for you.
- It’s easy to pay more than necessary. You can avoid high interest rates by comparing multiple lenders. Remember to consider all costs, including financing fees if applicable.
Compare legit payday loans and apply securely
Maximum borrowing costs per provinceAlways 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||$15 per $100 borrowed|
|Manitoba & Saskatchewan||$17 per $100 borrowed|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||$21 per $100 borrowed|
|Prince Edward Island||$25 per $100 borrowed|
|Northwest Territories, Nunavut & the Yukon||$60 per $100 borrowed|
|Quebec||Limit of 35% annual interest rate (AIR)|
Don has a costly vet billDon has heard the horror stories with payday loans — those scams run by con artists online. However, when he finds a stray puppy and takes it to the local vet for shots, he spends more than he thought he would, leaving him strapped for cash for the rest of his monthly expenses.
Don has bad credit from when he was younger and hasn’t paid off his credit cards bills fully in the last few months, so he doesn’t have a large line of credit available. Traditional banks don’t lend small amounts of money, so Don isn’t sure where to turn.
Instead of giving up, Don heads online and looks up how to tell if a lender is reputable or not. He compares different types of payday loans and finds one that abides by the regulations for his province, and is accredited by the Better Business Bureau.
He takes out a $200 payday loan with this reputable payday loan lender and works the costs into his next month’s budget.
Some more considerations before you apply
You’ll have to pay additional fees if you make a late payment or miss one entirely, and your lender may report your late repayments to one of the two credit bureaux – Equifax or TransUnion. Reconsider applying if you think you may have trouble repaying your loan.
Take some time to go through the loan’s terms and conditions, as this document tells you how much you may have to pay in different circumstances, such as rollovers or late payments. Some provinces also don’t allow you to take out more than one within a given period of time. If your lender says you can, they may not be trustworthy.
Frequently asked questions
More guides on Finder
Compare 2-month payday loans
Compare 2-month payday loan options, including rates and total costs.
Compare Personal Loans
Compare the best personal loans in Canada to finance your next purchase and keep more money in your pocket.
Compare 1-week payday loans
Though it may seem convenient, repayments can be difficult to afford with a 1-week payday loan.
Greenbox Capital business loans review
Get financing for your business from this US-based company.
Buy a car completely online through Clutch, a car-buying platform with over 700 vehicles.
Renfi Renovation Loan Review
Finance your home renovations with a Renfi loan. Borrow up to $150,000.
Revolut alternatives in Canada
Looking for alternatives to Revolut? These challenger banks and financial apps may be just what you need.
Swoop Funding Business Loan
Swoop Finance offers a vast range of business loans via its lender portfolio. Businesses of all sizes and funding requirements may be able to qualify. Find out more.
Think twice about getting a long-term car loan
Those lower monthly payments might be tempting, but they’ll cost you in the long run.
How to get a $300 loan
Compare your $300 loan options to find a fast, affordable loan when you need it.