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A to Z list of money lenders in Canada (personal loans)
Compare loan companies in Canada.
A-Z list of money lenders in Canada
Note that while we try to keep this list up to date, it may not be a comprehensive listing of all Canadian personal loan providers at the time of reading, and that it may become out of date as brands merge, new brands are introduced or other changes take place.
Compare money lenders in Canada
What are the interest rates of money lenders?
Money lender interest rates range from 6.99% to 46.96%. The exact rate you’ll get will depend on factors such as your credit score and history, your income and the type of lender you choose.
By law, money lenders are not allowed to charge an APR of more than 60%. Check out our guide to the latest personal loan rates for more information on the rates currently available from Canadian lenders.
What are the types of money lenders?
There are four options to consider when comparing money lenders in Canada:
Bank personal loans are the first option that springs to mind when you need to borrow money. The Big Five and many other banks offer a wide range of secured and unsecured loans, with competitive fixed and variable rates also available. Banks typically have strict eligibility requirements, so you’ll need a good to excellent credit score to qualify for a personal loan.
Credit union personal loans generally offer slightly more flexibility than banks. You’ll need to become a member before taking out a loan, but secured, unsecured, fixed and variable loans are all available. Credit unions also tend to have slightly more lenient eligibility criteria than the banks, but you’ll generally still need a good or better credit score to apply. That said, if you have bad credit but a solid history with the credit union, you may still be eligible for a small personal loan.
Online lenders tend to have higher interest rates than banks and credit unions, but the rates offered can vary substantially between providers. These non-bank lenders often have flexible eligibility requirements. Some providers specialize in personal loans for bad credit borrowers and also offer fast loan approval. Just watch out for higher interest rates, and do your research to ensure you’re dealing with a legitimate lender.
Peer-to-peer lenders can offer competitive rates provided you have good credit. You can access secured or unsecured financing through an online marketplace that connects you with investors who want to lend out money and make a profit from your loan interest payments. However, it can be difficult to get approved for a loan if you have bad credit.
Steps to find the best money lenders in Canada
1. Understand your personal financial situation
Work out how much you can afford to repay each month before you start comparing lenders. This will help give you a better idea of the loan amounts, interest rates and terms that suit you. It’s also important to check your credit score, which will allow you to determine whether you can approach a traditional lender like a bank or perhaps consider an alternative lender that specializes in bad credit loans.
2. Compare a range of lenders
Don’t just choose the first lender you come across. Instead, compare a variety of lenders that offer rates, loan terms and features that suit your needs, and shop around for the best deal. Learn more about low interest personal loans.
3. Make sure they’re registered
Check that the lender is registered in your province and is properly licensed to offer personal loans where you live. You can find out more about the lending laws in your province or territory from the consumer protection office.
4. Check their reputation
Next, read up on how long the lender has been in business and what previous customers have to say about them. Rather than relying on testimonials on the lender’s website, check independent review sites to find out if you’re dealing with a reliable provider. It’s also a good idea to check whether the lender is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and what their BBB rating is.
5. Check what loans they offer
Now it’s time to consider factors such as the lender’s eligibility requirements and whether they offer secured and unsecured loans. You can also compare the rates, amounts and loan terms they offer. If a lender offers personal loan pre-approvals, you can use this “quote” to get a better idea of a loan’s cost and how it compares to the competition. If you don’t have the time or the knowledge to compare lenders on your own, you might want to seek help from a personal loan broker.
6. Consider the turnaround time
If you need money quickly, check how long it takes for the lender to assess your application. Once approved, how long will you have to wait until the money is in your account?
7. Watch out for fees
Don’t forget to check the fine print to find out what fees may apply to your loan. These can include origination, NSF and prepayment fees.
8. Know how to recognize a scam
Finally, make sure you can spot the red flags that could indicate a personal loan scam. These can include the lack of a physical address, high-pressure sales tactics and guaranteed loan approval.
What are the eligibility requirements of money lenders in Canada?
The exact personal loan eligibility requirements you’ll need to satisfy differ between lenders, but as a general guide, you will need to meet the following criteria:
- Be at least 18 years old.
- Be a Canadian citizen or resident.
- Have an active bank account.
- Meet the minimum credit score.
- Have a steady income.
To apply for a loan you will need to provide:
- Proof of ID, such as a driver’s licence or passport.
- Proof of income and employment, such as bank statements and pay stubs.
- Details of your assets, debts and expenses.
Many lenders will also require you to complete a credit check.
What factors do money lenders look at when reviewing an application?
Money lenders in Canada will take into account a variety of factors before deciding to approve a loan. These include the following:
- Your credit score. Traditional lenders may require a good credit score of 660 or higher, but there are also plenty of private money lenders who offer loans to borrowers with bad credit.
- Your income. A steady source of income is important to allow you to repay a loan.
- Your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio. Money lenders will also compare the amount of your outstanding debts to your monthly income. The lower your DTI ratio, the greater your chances of approval and the better interest rates you can get.
- Your work history and job title. If you’re a full-time employee with a lengthy work history, you’ll be seen as a much more attractive borrower than a part-time worker who regularly changes jobs. In many cases, you’ll also need to have been in your current job for a minimum period of at least three months.
- NSF transactions in your bank account. If you’ve been recently charged NSF fees on your bank account, this will impact how the lender views your ability to make on-time payments each month.
- Your collateral. If you’re applying for a secured loan, the lender will need to assess the value of the asset you offer as collateral.
- The loan amount and term. Your lender may also vary their rates based on how much you want to borrow and the time you take to repay it.
How much can you borrow from a money lender?
Loan amounts vary between lenders. As a general guide, personal loan amounts range anywhere from $500 to $50,000, but some lenders may have lower maximum limits.
Minimum loan amounts also vary – for example, some banks will only approve loans of $3,000 or more – while borrowers with bad credit can typically only access smaller loans than people with good credit.
Finally, payday loans allow you to borrow an amount between $100 and $1,500. However, these loans are expensive to repay and have very short loan terms, so be sure to consider a range of payday loan alternatives first.
What loan terms do money lenders offer?
Private money lenders in Canada typically offer personal loans for periods ranging from 6 to 60 months. However, some offer terms of up to 7 or even 10 years, while terms as short as 3 months are available in some cases.
Choosing a long loan term means spreading your repayments out across a greater period, which means your monthly payments will be smaller. But this means you’ll have to pay extra interest fees, so the loan will end up costing more to repay.
For example, let’s say you borrow $5,000 at an interest rate of 14.99%:
- With a five-year loan term, your monthly repayment is $119 and the total cost will be $7,135.
- With a seven-year loan term, your monthly repayment is $96 ($23 less) but the total cost to repay the loan is $8,102 ($967 more).
Find out more in our guides to long-term loans and short-term loans.
Finally, if you opt for a payday loan, the maximum loan term is capped at 62 days. Payday lending regulations vary in each province and territory, so check the rules where you live.
What types of personal loans do money lenders offer?
There are a few options to consider when applying for a personal loan from a money lender. The first thing you’ll need to decide is whether your loan will be secured or unsecured.
- Secured loans. With a secured loan, you offer an asset (such as your car) as collateral. The lender will classify you as a lower-risk borrower as a result, which means you can access lower interest rates and makes this an option well worth considering if you have bad credit. But if you default on the loan, the lender can repossess your collateral.
- Unsecured loans. If you take out an unsecured loan, you can borrow money without providing any collateral. The lender will consider factors such as your credit score and income when assessing your application, but interest rates are generally higher than you can get with a secured loan. They’re generally designed for borrowers with good to excellent credit, but bad credit unsecured loans are available too.
Next, the interest rate on your loan could be fixed or variable.
- Fixed-rate loans. With a fixed-rate loan, your interest rate stays the same until the end of the loan term. With a fixed repayment schedule, you can budget for your monthly repayments in advance and enjoy protection from rate rises. However, rates are often higher than on variable loans, and you’ll miss out on savings should interest rates fall.
- Variable-rate loans. Interest rates on variable loans fluctuate in line with the Bank of Canada’s benchmark rate. This means your monthly repayment amount may differ – it’s good news if rates fall, but your loan will end up costing more if rates increase.
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