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Emergency loans for rent

Need money to help pay rent today or tomorrow? Here are 10 ways to get the money, including rent loans, in an emergency.

If you’re short on rent this month, you may be thinking of taking out a loan. While it’s possible to get an emergency loan for rent, it’s not ideal as it could lead to a cycle of debt, especially if you only qualify for expensive short-term loans.

Before applying for loans for rent, consider your different options. In this guide, we break down the 10 ways to cover rent in an emergency, including fast rent loans and other alternatives.

1. Get personal loans for rent

  • Best for: Renters with steady employment income who temporarily can’t afford 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.

Personal loans allow you to borrow as little as $500 for almost any purpose, like covering the gap if you need money for rent. If you have good to excellent credit, you can score a low interest rate. If you bad credit, you can get a rent loan from an online lender, but be prepared for steep interest rates.

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.

Compare personal loans for rent

Name Product Ratings APR Range Loan Amount Loan Term Broker Compliance Requirements
Spring Financial Personal Loan
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
10.8% - 46.99%
$500 - $35,000
6 - 60 months
Requirements: min. income $1,800/month, 3+ months employed, min. credit score 500
Loans Canada Personal Loan
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
6.99% - 46.96%
$300 - $50,000
3 - 60 months
Loans Canada is a loan search platform with access to multiple lenders. Applicants will be matched with a suitable lender based on credit history and borrowing requirements.
Requirements: min. credit score 300
LoanConnect Personal Loan
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
8.99% - 46.96%
$500 - $50,000
3 - 120 months
LoanConnect is a loan search platform with access to multiple lenders. Applicants will be matched with a suitable lender based on credit history and borrowing requirements.
Requirements: min. credit score 300
Mogo Personal Loan
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
9.90% - 46.96%
$500 - $35,000
6 - 60 months
Requirements: min. income $35,000/year, min. credit score 600
SkyCap Financial Personal Loan
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
12.99% - 39.99%
$500 - $10,000
9 - 36 months
Requirements: min. income $1,666.67/month, full time employment/pension, min. credit score 575, no bankruptcy
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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 rent loan 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 license 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.

2. Get an installment loan

  • 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 but can still be helpful if you can’t afford rent. They may also come with high interest rates, so keep an eye out for those when comparing installment loans for rent.

An installment loan has the same application process as a personal loan.

Compare installment loans for rent

1 - 2 of 2
Name Product Ratings APR Range Loan Amount Loan Term Broker Compliance Requirements
Loans Canada Installment Loan
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
8.00% - 46.96%
$500 - $50,000
4 - 60 months
Loans Canada is a loan search platform with access to multiple lenders. Applicants will be matched with a suitable lender based on credit history and borrowing requirements.
Requirements: min. credit score 300
LoanConnect Installment Loan
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
32.00%
$500 - $2,500
3 - 6 months
LoanConnect is a loan search platform with access to multiple lenders. Applicants will be matched with a suitable lender based on credit history and borrowing requirements.
Requirements: min. credit score 300
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3. Get a small pay advance

  • Best for: Renters who are a little short on the full rent payment.

If you’re only a couple of hundred dollars or so short on the amount you need for rent, a pay advance app is a great option. These apps let you borrow around $200 typically at 0% interest, which will be repaid with your next paycheque. These services are relatively affordable, usually charging either a small monthly membership fee or an optional tip.

If you only need that little extra top up to be able to pay your rent, this is one of the most affordable options.

Compare early pay advances

1 - 3 of 3
Name Product Loan Amount Loan Term Fees Offer
Bree Early Pay
$20 - $250
Next pay cycle
No interest or fees to access cash advance, fee for express funding (varies based on advance)
Access up to $250 with no interest or mandatory fees. No credit check required. Pay a fee to get instant funding.
Nyble Credit Line
$30 - $150
30 days, extendable
No interest or fees to access credit line, optional $11.99/month membership to get premium services such as instant funding
Use code CFIND1J to get 500 extra points and a $5 higher approval. Conditions apply.
Get a credit line with no interest or fees. Pay an optional membership fee to access premium services such as instant funding.
KOHO Cover
$20 - $250
subscription fee starting at $2/month
Sign up for a KOHO account and access a zero-interest cash advance. Repay anytime. No credit check required.
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4. Make a partial rent payment

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

Instead of going into debt and taking out a loan for 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. Although it may feel uncomfortable to talk to your landlord about something like that, landlords are often quite willing to work with their tenants. 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.

5. Apply for a rent subsidy

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

Every Canadian province and territory, and many cities, offer rent subsidy programs to help low- to moderate-income individual households with short-term rental assistance for emergencies. This could cover part or all of your rent, or it could provide temporary relief from rent payments.

Visit your local housing authority or rent subsidy program in your province to go over your options and apply for aid. Click on your province or territory below to start your search for housing and rental assistance programs:

What will I need to apply for rental assistance?

Depending on the program, you might be asked to provide some or all of the following:

  • Copy of your lease
  • Copy of your eviction notice (if applicable)
  • Proof of financial hardship
  • Breakdown of monthly expenses
  • Number of dependents
  • Income and salary information
  • Government-issued photo ID
  • Social Insurance Number
  • Proof of residence

6. Get rental assistance from local nonprofits

  • 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 can’t afford rent and are 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.

Contact 211.ca wherever you are in Canada

If you’re having trouble making ends meet and you’re looking for assistance, visit 211.ca to get connected to the right support you need. 211 is a team of real people with expertise in social services and community programs throughout Canada. Their helpline runs 24/7. Call 2-1-1, text 2-1-1 or email them. The service is free and confidential.

7. Get a line of credit

  • Best for: Renters who need ongoing quick access to funds

If you have a good relationship with your bank, you can apply to open a line of credit. You typically need a good credit score above 660 and steady employment to be approved. If you can’t get approved by a bank, online lenders can help, and they can approve you within 1 to 2 business days. However, their lines of credits usually have much higher rates than banks, so it’s important to pay off the principal as soon as possible and avoid overspending.

Compare lines of credit

1 - 4 of 4
Name Product Ratings APR Range Loan Amount Loan Term Broker Compliance Requirements
LoanConnect Line of Credit
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
19.99% - 46.96%
$500 - $50,000
Open
LoanConnect is a loan search platform with access to multiple lenders. Applicants will be matched with a suitable lender based on credit history and borrowing requirements.
Requirements: min. credit score 300
Loans Canada Line of Credit
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
9.90% - 21.50%
$5,000 - $35,000
Open
Loans Canada is a loan search platform with access to multiple lenders. Applicants will be matched with a suitable lender based on credit history and borrowing requirements.
Requirements: min. credit score 300
Fora Line of Credit
Finder Score:
★★★★★
19.90% - 46.90%
$1,000 - $10,000
Open
Requirements: Steady source of income
MogoMini Line of Credit
Finder Score:
★★★★★
Customer Survey:
★★★★★
47.42%
$1,000 - $3,500
No end dates
Requirements: min. income $35,000/year, min. credit score 600
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8. Ask family and friends for help paying rent

  • 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.

You can read our full guide to getting a loan from family and friends here to get some tips on how to successfully borrow money from loved ones.

9. Use a credit card for rent

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

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

Otherwise, if you can’t afford rent 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.

10. Use a credit card cash advance to pay rent

  • 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.

11. Get a payday loan for rent

  • 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 when you can’t afford rent if you are certain you can pay it back in full by your next payday.

Compare payday loans for rent

⚠️ Warning: Be cautious with payday loans
High-cost payday loans are unsustainable for borrowing over a continued period of time and are expensive as a means of longer-term borrowing. View payday costs and regulations by province here. 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). You may also want to consider payday loan alternatives.
1 - 3 of 3
Name Product Loan Amount Loan Term APR Turnaround Time Serviced Provinces Offer Table description
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
24/7 instant approval and e-Transfer funding.
Same day cash up to $1,500 for car payments, rent, mortgage, home & appliance repair, and more. Income of at least $800/month required.
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, NT, ON, SK, YT
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.
Cash Money Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
5 - 40 days
Varies by province
As little as 15 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer®
BC, MB, NL, NS, ON, SK
Instant decision and e-Transfer funding. Income of at least $1,000/month required.
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Maximum borrowing costs of payday loans per province
Always refer to your contract for exact repayment amounts and costs.
Province Max. cost of borrowing a $100 payday loan Cooling off period to cancel loan Max. penalty for returned cheque or pre-authorized debit
Alberta $15 2 business days $25
British Columbia $15 2 business days $20
Manitoba $17 48 hours excluding Sundays and holidays $20
New Brunswick $15 48 hours excluding Sundays and holidays $20
Newfoundland and Labrador $14 2 business days $20
Nova Scotia $15 Next business day (2 days for online loans) $40 (default penalty)
Ontario $15 2 business days $25
Prince Edward Island $15 2 business days N/A
Quebec Limit of 35% AIR N/A N/A
Saskatchewan $17 Next business day $25

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 can’t afford rent and 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.
  • Get a side hustle. If it’s possible to pick up some work on the side to bring in some extra income and make up the difference at the end of the month, than it may be worth a try. Consider things like becoming a delivery driver, freelancer or dog walker.

I’ve been evicted. Can I use a rent 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.

Can I get rent loans with bad credit?

Yes, you can get rent loans with bad credit, but be prepared to pay high interest rates. Lenders charge higher rates to people with low credit scores because of the higher risk of loan defaults.

To get approved for a rent loan, you’ll need to show the lender that you have enough income to repay your loan, even with your existing debt payments.

Can I get rent loans for the unemployed with no credit check?

Yes, it’s possible to get rent loans if you’re unemployed and don’t want a credit check from certain installment and payday loan lenders. Those lenders tend to focus more on your ability to repay the loan instead of your credit score. As long as you can show some steady source of regular income, like Employment Insurance (EI) or Canada child benefit (CCB), you may be able to qualify for a rent loan.

An example of an installment loan provider that accepts unemployment income and does not do credit checks is LoansLoans.ca.

Bottom line

If you’re facing an emergency and find that you can’t afford rent, you might want to first look into housing assistance offered by government agencies and local charities, then start exploring loans for rent. Still short on funds? Look into more payday loan alternatives before turning to more expensive financing options like payday loans.

Frequently asked questions about paying rent

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