Capital Good Fund short-term loans review

Payday loan alternatives for low-income residents of four states.

Capital Good Fund is a community development financial institution (CDFI) that works to provide affordable funding to low-income areas. Its short-term loans cost a fraction of what you’d find with most payday and installment lenders. But it’s not as fast, and it’s only available in a handful of states.

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Min. Amount


Max. Amount

Up to 4 days

Turnaround time


Product NameCapital Good Fund short-term loans
Min. Amount$300
Max. Amount$2,000
Loan TermVaries
Loan SecurityUnsecured
Turnaround TimeUp to 4 days
RequirementsBank account or approved prepaid card with ACH features, regular income, resident of eligible state

What is a Capital Good Fund short-term loan?

Capital Good Fund offers a variety of short-term loans, including what it calls an Other Personal Loan and an Emergency Loan.

Other Personal Loan

  • Loan amounts: $700 to $2,000
  • APR: 24%
  • Term: 2 years
  • Restricted uses: Pay off old bills or debts

This loan actually works more like an installment loan. It’s available to all credit types, and loan amounts are much smaller than you’d find with your average personal loan provider. Everyone gets the same rate and term, regardless of how much you borrow. But you can pay it off faster to save on interest — Capital Good Fund doesn’t charge a prepayment penalty.

Emergency Loan

  • Loan amounts: $300 to $500
  • APR: 10%
  • Term: 1 year

Capital Good Fund’s Emergency Loan is meant as an alternative to high-interest payday loans. Already have a payday loan? You could use this loan to refinance it for more affordable rates and terms.

While it’s still a small-dollar loan, it comes with an even lower APR than the Other Personal Loan. Everyone gets the same rate and one-year term, meaning you won’t have to pay it back right away and risk getting caught in a cycle of debt.

What states are Capital Good Fund loans available in?

Capital Good Fund loans are available in the following states:

  • Rhode Island
  • Florida
  • Massachusetts
  • Delaware

What are the benefits of a Capital Good Fund short-term loan?

From its minimal eligibility requirements to its comparatively low APRs, here are a few perks of borrowing from Capital Good Fund:

  • Competitive rates and terms. Everyone gets a 10% to 24% APR and a one- or two-year term, depending on the type of loan you choose.
  • No job or bank account required. As long as you have a steady source of income and eligible prepaid card, you don’t need to be employed or have a bank account to qualify.
  • Open to all credit types. Borrowers with a thin credit file or past bankruptcies are still eligible for one of Capital Good Fund’s short-term loans.
  • Can help build credit. Unlike most payday lenders, Capital Good Fund reports repayments to the credit bureaus.
  • Refinance payday loans. You can use a Capital Good Fund Emergency Loan to break the cycle of debt and pay off a high-interest payday loan at a more favorable rate.
  • Multilingual website. Capital Good Fund’s website and live-chat feature are available in English and Spanish. And it also has staff that speak Portuguese and Haitian Creole.

What to watch out for

Consider these potential drawbacks before taking out a short-term loan from Good Capital Fund:

  • Long turnaround. It can take a couple business days to process your application and another to get your funds. It might not be ideal if you need money quickly.
  • Limited availability. These loans are only available to residents of Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Delaware and Florida.
  • Prepaid debit cards require ACH. You can’t just use any prepaid debit card for your loan — it must be able to receive bank transfers.
  • No current bankruptcies. While past bankruptcies are acceptable, you can’t qualify if you’re currently undergoing bankruptcy or about to start the process.
  • Can’t be behind on certain payments. You won’t qualify if you’re behind on your mortgage or child support.
  • Hard credit check. Capital Good Fund conducts a hard credit check when you take out your loan, which can temporarily lower your credit score.

Beware of the hard credit check

A hard credit pull is a way for lenders to check your credit report that temporarily hurts your credit score. Capital Good Fund doesn’t allow you to prequalify based on a soft credit check like some other lenders. But since everyone gets the same rates and terms, it’s not totally necessary.

Instead of prequalifying, Capital Good Fund has an eligibility quiz you can take to make sure you meet all of its requirements. You can find the quiz by going to the Capital Good Fund Loans page and clicking Use our eligibility check.

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Is it safe to apply for a Capital Good Fund short-term loan?

Generally, yes — though no website can ensure your information stays 100% safe. Capital Good Fund does its part by using SSL encryption to protect your personal details, and your application is password protected. It also doesn’t share any personally identifiable information with marketing companies or other third parties — many lenders do this and don’t allow you to opt out.

Rhode Island residents uncomfortable with applying online also have the option to visit the office in person, though it recommends you call to schedule an appointment first.

Capital Good Fund reviews and complaints

Capital Good Fund doesn’t have any online reviews as of October 2020. This is relatively common for CDFIs — and not necessarily a bad sign. But it makes it difficult to tell what kind of experience to expect from this lender.

Am I eligible?

To qualify for a Capital Good Fund short-term loan, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Bank account or approved prepaid card with ACH features
  • Regular income
  • Resident of an eligible state
  • No current or planned bankruptcies
  • No past-due mortgages
  • No overdue child support

Approved prepaid cards

Don’t have a bank account? You can use one of these prepaid cards as long as you’ve already used it for at least two months:

  • Netspend Prepaid Card
  • PayPal Prepaid Mastercard
  • Account Now Prepaid Card
  • READYdebit VISA Prepaid Card
  • Brink’s Money Prepaid Card
  • US Money Prepaid Mastercard
  • Skylight Financial Paycard

    How do I apply?

    You can apply online or in person at Capital Good Fund’s office. Since Capital Good Fund’s application involves a hard credit pull, you might want to take Capital Good Fund’s eligibility quiz before you get started.

    How to check eligibility

    Follow these steps to take Capital Good Fund’s eligibility quiz:

    1. Go to the Capital Good Fund website and select your state.
    2. Click Loans in the main navigation bar.
    3. Click Use our eligibility check under the green Apply now button.
    4. Fill out all fields and click Check eligibility.

    How to apply online

    If you’re eligible, you can directly get started on your loan application:

    1. Click the green Apply for your loan button.
    2. Click Sign up to create a new account.
    3. Enter your name, email and create a password. Click Next.
    4. Click My loans/Apply for a loan.
    5. Review the eligibility checklist and check the box acknowledging the statements. Click Next.
    6. Enter your personal information and mailing address. Click Next.
    7. Select either Emergency or Other Personal depending on what type of loan you want to apply for.
    8. Enter details about your bank account, housing, employment, income and monthly bills. Click Continue.
    9. Follow the instructions to upload all required documents.

    After you submit all required documents, a loan officer should get in touch with an offer within two business days. If you accept, sign your loan documents online and receive your funds in your bank account within one to two business days.

    What documents do I need to apply?

    You might need to provide some or all of the following documents when applying for a Capital Good Fund short-term loan:

    • Two months of bank or prepaid debit card statements
    • Proof of purpose — for Emergency Loans only
    • Government-issued ID
    • Voided check or copy of prepaid debit card

    I got the Capital Good Fund loan. Now what?

    Now you have to start repaying your loan in monthly installments. If you took out an Other Personal Loan, you have two years to pay off your loan. With the Emergency Loan, you have one year. Since Capital Good Fund doesn’t charge any prepayment penalties, you might want to pay it off early to save on interest.

    If you have any questions or concerns, reach out too Capital Good Fund either through its live-chat feature or by calling 866-584-3651.

    Bottom line

    Capital Good Fund offers affordable alternatives to payday and installment loans — and doesn’t require a bank account. But it’s not the best option if you need money today, since it can take up to four business days to process. And it’s only available in a handful of states.

    You can see how it compares to other short-term lenders or explore other loans that don’t require a bank account by checking out our guides.

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