Pros and cons of small pay advances
- No credit check required
- No interest or late penalties
- Easy application process
- Very new option in Canada
- Same-day funding typically only available for a fee
- Watch out for late payment fees
Need a small loan to help you cover essential expenses and get through to your next paycheque? From personal and payday loans to pay advances and credit card cash advances, there are several options to choose from.
In this guide, we’ll take a look at the features of different small loans in Canada to help you find the option that’s right for you.
These providers offer Canadians various types of small loans and cash advances.
|Loan provider||Interest rate||Loan amount||Loan term||Key features|
|0% interest, but there is a $4.99 - $7.99/month membership fee||$30 – $150||Flexible||Instant approval and funding within 30 minutes for a small fee, no credit check|
|0%||$20 – $250||Next pay cycle||Approval is based on zero NSF fees in your bank account|
|0%||$0–$250||Flexible||Easy application, Fast funding|
|28.00% - 32.00% + broker fee||$500–$1,000||3 months||Funding within 24 hours of approval, no credit check|
|Varies by province||$100 – $1,500||7 - 62 days||24/7 approval and e-Transfer, accepts bad credit|
|9.99% - 46.96%||$500–$35,000||6 - 60 months||Fast application, same-day funding|
|6.99% - 46.96%||$300–$50,000||3 - 60 months||Loan broker, largest lender network|
|8.00% - 46.96%||$500–$50,000||3 - 120 months||Loan broker, pre-approval in 5 minutes|
|4.84% - 35.99%||$300–$50,000||3 - 120 months||84% chance of approval even with bad credit|
|19.99% - 39.99%||$500–$10,000||9 - 60 months||Excellent service, fast approvals|
|9.99% - 46.96%||$500–$100,000||9 - 120 months||Interac e-Transfer, possible 2% rate reduction with a co-applicant|
|19.99% - 46.80%||$1,500 – $20,000||12 - 60 months||Approval in 24 hours, funding in 24 hours, accepts many types of income and bad credit|
|Varies by province||$120 – $1,500||1 - 62 days||Deposited in as soon as 24 hours (excluding weekends)|
|Varies by province||$100 – $1,500||5 - 40 days||Instant approval, e-Transfer in as little as 15 mins, accepts bad credit|
|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||$17||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|
Pay advance services allow you to gain early access to a portion of your next paycheque. There’s no credit check required and no interest to pay, and your repayment is automatically deducted from your bank account on your next payday.
If you’re looking for a small personal loan, you won’t be able to get it from a bank – most banks have a minimum loan amount of $3,000 or more. And while you may be able to access loan amounts as low as $500 from some credit unions, in most cases you’ll need to apply to an online lender.
Payday loans are short-term loans of up to $1,500. You can apply online or in-store and get instant approval, but high APRs mean this is an extremely expensive way to borrow.
With a credit card cash advance, you can access funds from your card balance. It’s a quick and convenient option that allows you to get your cash from your bank or an ATM, but a cash advance fee applies.
The cash advance amount must be smaller than the remaining credit limit on your card. The card provider may also impose daily, weekly and monthly cash advance limits, so check your card’s terms and conditions.
The next option is to choose overdraft protection on your chequing account. This allows you to cover the cost of small purchases even if there are insufficient funds in your account, which means you can avoid NSF fees, but keep in mind that overdraft fees and interest apply.
Yes, some online and payday lenders offer small no credit check loans. Instead of looking at your credit history, they assess your income to work out whether you’ll be able to afford loan repayments.
However, be very wary of any lender that promises guaranteed loan approval. A reputable lender will always examine your ability to repay a loan before providing approval, so keep this in mind when comparing your options.
Yes, you can. Many online lenders are willing to provide loans to borrowers with bad credit. In fact, lenders are actually more likely to approve you for a small loan amount than a large one, so you’ll find plenty of options to choose from.
Rather than focusing on your credit score, these lenders will consider your income and your ability to repay what you borrow. However, be aware that you’ll be offered higher interest rates than borrowers who have good to excellent credit.
The fastest way to get instant small loans in Canada is to apply for a small payday loan. Some online lenders offer 24/7 applications and approvals, and with the funds deposited into your account via Interac e-Transfer, it’s possible to get cash within minutes. Alternatively, you can apply through a storefront lender and collect cash in person.
However, payday loans are a very expensive borrowing option and commonly have APRs of 300% or more. So if you need an instant small loan and you’re looking for something more affordable, a fast personal loan from an online lender could be the answer. With fast approvals and e-Transfers available, it’s possible to access your loan amount within 24 hours.
Thinking of applying for a small loan? Consider the following factors first:
First and foremost, ask yourself whether you really need to take out a loan. Is the expense you need to cover absolutely essential? Are there any other options you could consider before applying for credit?
If taking out a loan is the best option, sit down to calculate how much you can afford to repay. Once you’ve made your monthly repayment, will you still have enough of your income left over to cover all your regular expenses?
Don’t fall into the trap of choosing the quickest or most convenient small loan option available to you. Remember to compare a variety of options to find the loan that is the best fit for your financial situation.
Don’t just look at the interest rate when comparing your small loan options. Check out the annual percentage rate, which combines the interest rate and loan fees to show you the true cost of borrowing. Also, don’t forget to check the fine print for any other fees that may apply, such as late payment fees or prepayment penalties.
Do your research to make sure you only deal with legitimate and properly licensed lenders. If a lender makes promises that sound too good to be true or there are other red flags that could indicate a personal loan scam, look elsewhere.
Make sure you thoroughly review the loan’s terms and conditions before accepting the loan and signing the contract. This will ensure that you understand the full cost of the loan and help you avoid any nasty surprises.
There are a few other options to consider if you need fast access to a small loan:
If you’re stuck in a financial bind, there are a host of other options you might like to consider before getting deeper into debt:
Compare apps like Nyble in Canada to access emergency funding.
How to access flexible financing with a line of credit in Canada, even if you have bad credit.
More than 7 million Canadians confess to taking out loans in order to cover the rising cost of living.
Want to rebuild your credit faster? Pay your consumer proposal off with a loan to get back on track with your finances.
Find out common personal loan scams and which lenders are legit.
Compare current personal loan interest rates in Canada.
Find out how you can borrow up to $50,000 with a personal loan.
7 reasons your personal loan application was rejected plus tips on how to increase your chances of approval.
Read on and find out how to get a loan to take care of your sick pet.
Learn how unsecured personal loans work, compare top loan offers and key features to consider when applying.
finder.com is an independent comparison platform and information service that aims to provide you with the tools you need to make better decisions. While we are independent, the offers that appear on this site are from companies from which finder.com receives compensation. We may receive compensation from our partners for placement of their products or services. We may also receive compensation if you click on certain links posted on our site. While compensation arrangements may affect the order, position or placement of product information, it doesn't influence our assessment of those products. Please don't interpret the order in which products appear on our Site as any endorsement or recommendation from us. finder.com compares a wide range of products, providers and services but we don't provide information on all available products, providers or services. Please appreciate that there may be other options available to you than the products, providers or services covered by our service.