- Payday loans from $400 to $900 with an interest rate of 292% p.a.
- Loan term: 6 - 16 weeks
- Eligibility: Must be at least 22; in full time employment or receive a full-time benefit; have a minimum income of $500 per week after tax; be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident.
Finder is committed to editorial independence. While we receive compensation when you click links to partners, they do not influence our opinions or reviews. Learn how we make money.
Compare a range of short-term loan lenders and learn more about the options available to borrowers.
Updated . What changed?
No matter how good you are at managing your finances, sometimes unexpected expenses crop up and you need money in a hurry. It could be a hefty vet bill, urgent car repairs or simply a purchase that you just have to make. Sometimes getting access to all the funds you need can seem beyond your financial grasp. This is where payday loans come in.
These small, short-term loans are designed to cover you until payday. They give you the funds you need to make your purchases and then when you next get paid, the theory is that you pay back the loan amount.
A number of New Zealand lenders specialise in offering these types of loans, with many even giving financing to customers with bad credit histories. However, you also need to be wary of the loan terms, high-interest rates and high fees these loans attract.
⚠️ Warning: be cautious with short-term loans
If you're experiencing financial hardship and would like to speak to someone for free financial counselling, you can call the MoneyTalks helpline operated by FinCap on 0800 345 123. It is open from 8:00am to 5pm, Monday to Friday and 10am to 2pm Saturday. When comparing short term loans, ensure you take into consideration any fees, charges and rates you may be charged.
Compare payday loans from New Zealand lenders
Alternatives to short-term loans
Consider these alternatives before applying for a payday loan:
- Use online Government resources. The Commerce Commission New Zealand website explains how loans works and what to be aware of when borrowing from a lender.
- Payment plans. Talk to your electricity, gas, phone or water provider to see if you can work out a payment plan or receive an extension on your due date if you’re behind on payments.
- Contact your creditors. Speak with creditors about extending the due date of your payment, or working out a new payment plan that works for both of you. Seek personal loans elsewhere. Consider a small personal loan from a bank or a credit union. You may qualify for a loan with much lower interest rates than those offered by payday loan companies.
- Pay with credit card. Consider paying with your credit card to cover your emergency bills or payments. This is not a long term solution, as you’ll need to pay off the balance as soon as possible, but it’s an alternative to a short term loan with high – and immediate – interest rates.
What's in this guide?
- Compare payday loans from New Zealand lenders
- Looking for a specific loan amount?
- Short term loans designed for you
- What is a payday loan?
- What if I can't repay a loan?
- Risks of payday loans
- The short term loan application process
- Can I get a 'no credit check' loan?
- Am I eligible for a payday loan if...
- How to compare payday loans
- Tips on receiving approval for a payday loan
- Can you take out a second payday loan?
- Questions you've always had, but were too scared to ask
Looking for a specific loan amount?
Up to $1,000
Sometimes all you need is access to $1,000 for your short term needs. Compare a range of loans here.
Up to $5,000
If you have bad credit, don’t despair. You could still borrow up to $5,000 if you meet the specific criteria.
Short term loans designed for you
Just because you are on Work and Income payments shouldn’t stop you from getting a loan. Find out here.
Need new textbooks but you haven’t been paid yet? Compare your options before here for a short term loan.
Short term loans
Cash advances or short term loans are loans for a short-term solution to a cashflow problem.
Bad credit loans
If you need a larger amount short-term loans, you could apply for a bad credit personal loan.
What is a payday loan?
Payday loans are a short-term finance product designed for borrowers to repay in line with their pay frequency ( hence the name), ie, the loan can be repaid every week, two weeks or month.
The amount you can borrow is typically between $300 and $2,000 for a period of 2 days to six months, or if you want to borrow $5,000 you may have up to one year to repay it. The time it takes to receive approval is relatively quick, and may even be within the hour, which means if you are in need of the money quickly, there are lenders that can help.
Please be aware that payday loans usually come with a shorter loan term and higher interest and fees, so you need to ensure that you can comfortably repay the loan amount.
What if I can’t repay a loan?
If you don’t make repayments on time, you are in default and the loan provider charges you a fee. Any defaults are also listed on your credit report as a negative mark and may be there for up to seven years. If you have a loan and are not sure if you can make the repayments, see Finder’s guide for tips on what to do next.
Only apply for a loan that aligns with your budget and is within your capability to repay. If you have any doubts about your ability to meet the loan repayments, you should consider other options and do not apply for the loan.
Risks of payday loans
There are several risks when it comes to taking out a payday loan. In general, try to avoid taking out a payday loan if you aren’t certain that you can pay it back. Downsides to payday loans include the following:
- High default fees. The biggest pitfall of taking out a payday loan is that if you can’t repay it on time, the lender will likely charge you additional fees in addition to the interest you owe. These costs could increase the amount of money you must repay the lender and cause financial difficulties.
- The debt cycle. If you have difficulty making a repayment, it might be tempting to borrow more money to pay off your loan. This becomes a cycle of debt that can be very difficult to escape from.
- High-interest rates. Payday loans typically have much higher annual interest rates than other types of loans.
- Direct debit risks. Many payday lenders require you to make repayments via direct debit on your next payday. Unlike other loan types, payday loans cannot typically be repaid in small instalments. If you need the money from your next pay cheque to pay for rent or other expenses, you could be left short.
- Credit rating impact. If you can’t repay your loan on time, it could negatively affect your credit rating.
The short term loan application process
This is how the short term loan application process works:
Step 1: Compare lenders
Finding the right lender is the first essential step of the application process. Review the loan amount, fees, turnaround time and the loan term to ensure you apply for a loan that meets your needs.
Step 2: Review the eligibility criteria and necessary documents
The application criteria and information it requires when you apply varies according to the lender.
Usually, you need to be over the age of 18 and receiving a regular income, but lenders differ on where that income comes from (Work and Income payments, employment or a combination of the two), and the level of bad credit it accepts. For example, some lenders may allow discharged bankrupts to apply but others don’t.
Typically, you need to provide the following documents to apply for a payday loan:
- Documentation to verify your identity, for example your driver’s licence, passport or 18+ Card.
- Proof of address such as a recent utility bill, statement or government letter.
- Your employment details, including whether you work, how long you have been employed there, and the nature of your employment (full-time, part-time, etc.)
- Your income and expenses.
- If you receive Work and Income payments, you need to provide details of this and may need to provide receipts.
- You need to indicate whether you have taken out a short-term loan in the last 90 days and whether you will use this loan to pay off another payday loan
How do lenders use my documents to approve me for a loan?
While lenders ask you for different information, depending on which payday provider you apply with, it usually uses the information for similar purposes. Here’s how lenders use the following details:
- Your bank statements for the last three months
Lenders often go through the previous 90 days’ of your banking history, to get a general idea of your financial position.
Lenders need to be confident that you can manage the repayments, and will have money in your account on the day they plan to direct debit repayments. If your account does not show the income you say you earn, for example, because you receive some pay in cash, the lender will not approve you for the loan.
- Information to conduct a credit check
Your personal information helps lenders perform a credit check. All responsible payday lenders will conduct a credit check, but some still accept bad credit borrowers. However, the level of bad credit they allow differs. For example, some lenders accept you if you are a current or discharged bankrupt while others do not.
- Your Work and Income payment information
Payday lenders need to know you can comfortably afford to repay the loan, so want to see evidence of regular payments into your bank account. These can be from permanent Work and Income payments, private income or a combination of both.
- Your income, pay dates and expenses
The loan provider uses your income and expenses to determine how much money you can afford to borrow and uses the pay dates to set your repayment schedule. It verifies this using your bank statements.
Step 3: Approval
Lenders can usually let you know if you have received approval in a matter of minutes because most use a system to approve the application rather than a human being. If they require more information to accept you, the lender will contact you, but this may delay your application.
Step 4: The contract
If you receive approval, you need to agree to the loan contract before the lender sends the funds. Many lenders do this by sending an SMS or a copy of a digital contract that you sign online.
Review the agreement carefully, as it sets out your loan term, repayment amounts and the fees for late-payments or defaults. If you have any questions about the contract, contact your lender.
Step 5: How long it takes to receive your funds
The time it takes to transfer the funds differs between lenders and may also depend on who you bank with. If the lender uses the same bank, you may receive the funds within minutes of the lender sending them. Some lenders can also do this if you bank with any of the major New Zealand banks.
However, with most, you need to apply and receive approval by a specific time (usually around 3:00 pm) for you to receive the funds on the same day. If you need the loan today, the earlier you apply, the better chance you have of getting the money.
Can I get a ‘no credit check’ loan?
All responsible lenders will carry out a credit check to help them understand if you will be able to pay back the loan.
If you need a loan, but you’re not sure if your credit rating is strong enough to get approved, you could consider a lender that offers loans to those with bad credit.
Am I eligible for a payday loan if…
Every lender has different eligibility parameters, but generally, you need to meet the following minimum criteria:
- Be over the age of 18
- Be a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident
- Receive a regular income, either through employment or Work and Income benefit or both
How to compare payday loans
As these types of loans become increasingly popular in New Zealand, borrowers are finding themselves with more lenders and more loans to choose from. You should take the following factors into consideration when deciding on the right product for you:
- Fees and interest. The interest rate and fees on a loan affect how much you have to pay back over the life of the loan. Look for a competitive rate and low fees.
- Repayment terms. Loan terms for payday loans can be around two days to one year. The length of the payday loan directly affects how much you pay because the lender may charge a monthly fee. Look at the loan terms on offer and use a loan calculator to determine how much the loan will cost over its lifetime.
- Quality of lender. Unfortunately, this is a sector of the market that can attract some unscrupulous operators. You need to ensure you take out a loan with a provider who is trusted and respected, and one who offers full transparency when it comes to the features and fees of your loan.
- Additional fees and charges. As well as upfront and ongoing charges, the lender can charge enforcement and default costs if you fail to repay your loan on time. Make sure you check how much the lender charges you if: Your repayment is late, you are sent a default notice or you need to reschedule one of your payments. If these charges are excessive, you may want to consider a different loan provider.
- The application process and turnaround time. Find out how you can apply, how quickly approval takes and when you can expect to receive your funds. If you need your funds by a specific time, this may be a deciding factor.
Tips on receiving approval for a payday loan
- Check the last three months of your bank statements. Lenders check these, so you also might want to take a look. Loan providers look for red flags, such as your account being overdrawn, or inconsistencies in the pay you receive into your account in comparison to what you state on the application. Other exchanges such as gambling transactions can also be an issue.
- Don’t apply for more than you can afford. Just because the lender allows you to ask for a specific amount doesn’t mean you should. For example, if you only apply to see how much you can get, the lender may reject your application entirely rather than approving you for a smaller amount.
- Provide as much information as possible. There can be a delay in many applications when the lender has to chase information. It can also lead to automatic systems not approving you for a loan instantly because you didn’t provide the necessary details. Check everything the lender needs and make sure you send it.
- Double-check the eligibility criteria. Lenders set minimum eligibility criteria which you need to meet before you apply. If you don’t meet one or more of the requirements, do not ask for the loan. It leads to a rejected application on your credit file, which makes it more difficult to receive approval for a loan in the future.
Can you take out a second payday loan?
The short answer is yes. However, you need to meet more stringent criteria than with the first loan, which is not because lenders apply different rules to second loans but because payday lenders have to take further steps to ensure you won’t be under substantial hardship.
What do lenders look at when I apply for a second payday loan?
Lenders need to ensure you can repay the loan without hardship. To do this, it reviews your current financial situation and looks at multiple factors, including your credit history; the payments you make on your existing payday loan or any other loan; whether you receive Work and Income payments; your employment and income details. The lender may find you are no longer eligible for the credit you were previously.
How can I make sure I receive approval for a second payday loan?
There’s no way to guarantee approval, and doing so for the second time is probably harder than the first. It’s essential to bear the following in mind:
- Before applying, re-examine the lender’s eligibility criteria. You may or may not be eligible for the loans you once were. Some lenders may specify you cannot currently be repaying a payday loan or use this one to repay a previous payday loan, so check to avoid rejection.
- Check your budget before applying. Can you afford the repayments of this second loan? If you think you are going to struggle to make multiple loan repayments, then you may want to consider alternative finance options, such as community financial assistance programs, or reconsider if you even need the loan. Payday loans are not a long-term economic solution and are only meant to serve an immediate need for funds.
- Compare your options before applying and always scrutinise the eligibility criteria. There’s a range of payday loans available, so you have a better chance than ever of finding the right one for you.
Questions you’ve always had, but were too scared to ask
Have more questions? We have the answers below.
Read more on this topic
Superloans Short Term Loans Review If you live in Wellington or the Hawkes Bay, you may be eligible for a short term loan from Superloans
Payday loans for single parents Single parents often do it tough. If you are running low on cash and need to pay for things such as food, school items or even transport, a payday loan might be able to help you out of a bad situation.
$1000 cash loans Don’t stress if you need $1,000 cash quickly. Consider applying for a loan from a payday lender if you need money urgently.
Wallet Wizard Short Term Loans Review Wallet Wizard gives you access to up to $5,000 of revolving credit with no ongoing fees and a low establishment fee.
Loans for beneficiaries Even if you have bad credit history, a beneficiary loan can help those on benefits with some extra cash to pay unexpected bills.
Ferratum Revolving Credit Loan Line of credit loans from Ferratum allow you to make payments at a pace that suits you.
Swoosh Finance Short Term Loan Swoosh Finance no longer offers short-term loans.
Cash relief payday loan review Cash Relief specialises in short term payday loans for Kiwis who need quick cash.
Cash Till Payday Short Term Loans Consider a quick and flexible short term loan from Cash Till Payday.
SMARTCASH Payday Loans SMARTCASH offers short term loans at low rates, allowing you to get the cash you need quickly.
Ask an Expert