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Personal Loans

Quick Loans: How to Find Fast Cash

An unplanned financial emergency can be stressful, especially if you don’t have cash savings to cover the expense. A personal loan could be a viable option to get fast funds. You can get a lump sum and repay the loan each month over a fixed repayment term.

Browse our top picks for personal loans that deliver quick funds to your bank account. We’ve selected a wide range of lenders based on credit profiles and other unique features.

Best quick personal loans

You don’t need to apply with a predatory payday lender to get a quick-cash loan. None of the lenders we feature here are payday lenders. The time it takes to get a personal loan can differ by lender, but many deliver funds within one business day.

Find out more details on our recommendations by following the link from the lender’s name in the table. It will drop down to a more detailed review, so you have all the information you need to weigh your options.

LenderBest forTime to fund
SoFiGood creditSame day
UpgradeFair creditWithin 1 day
AchieveChoosing payment date24 – 72 hours
Best EggSecured loans24 hours
UpstartThin (little to no) credit1 business day
Happy MoneyCredit card debt3 – 6 business days
LightStreamExcellent credit Same day

Best for good credit: SoFi

Editorial rating: 5 out of 5

  • Large loan amounts
  • Rate quote in 60 seconds

SoFi makes it easy to get fast funds—sometimes as fast as the same day. SoFi states that 86% of personal loans signed on a business day before 7 p.m. Eastern time received funding the same day.

You can get a quote from SoFi in under a minute with a soft pull to your credit score. SoFi only performs a hard credit check when you accept a rate quote and continue with your application. 

SoFi offers APRs between 7.99% and 23.43%, repayment terms up to 84 months, and origination fees as low as 0%. You’ll need good to excellent credit to qualify, along with a relatively high income. 

Best for fair credit: Upgrade

Editorial rating: 4.9 out of 5

  • Wide range of loan amounts
  • Next-day funding available 
  • Free credit monitoring resources

Upgrade is designed for borrowers with credit scores of 560 and above. Upgrade doesn’t offer same-day funding, but you could get your loan proceeds within one business day of Upgrade verifying your identity and income.

You can help speed up the disbursement process by gathering pay stubs or bank statements ahead of time. If Upgrade requests additional documentation, respond as soon as possible for the best chance at next-day funding.

Upgrade’s loan terms range from 24 to 48 months, and origination fees start at 1.85%. You could qualify for an APR as low as 8.49%, and with loan amounts starting at $1,000, you won’t have to borrow more than you need.

Best for choosing payment date: Achieve

Editorial rating: 4.8 out of 5

  • Loan consultants available online or via phone
  • Lower origination fee range
  • Direct pay discount when consolidating debt

With Achieve’s fast loan approvals, you’ll find out the status of your application the same day you apply. After approval, delivering funds to your bank account takes 24 to 72 hours. Achieve lets you choose your payment date, too, giving you more control over your money.

If you’re consolidating debt and allow Achieve to pay your creditors on your behalf, you’ll enjoy a reduced rate with Achieve’s direct pay discount. Achieve also offers rate discounts when you apply with a qualified co-borrower or show proof of sufficient retirement savings.

Achieve’s repayment terms span 24 to 60 months, with origination fees between 1.99% and 6.99%. APRs start at 7.99% and go up to 35.99%, and you can prequalify with a soft credit check before you apply.

Best for a secured loan: Best Egg

Editorial rating: 4.8 out of 5

  • 24-hour funding time
  • Some borrowers have the option to change payment due date
  • No prepayment penalties

Best Egg offers secured and unsecured loan options. To secure your Best Egg loan, you can use your vehicle equity or your home’s fixtures, such as built-in cabinets or that chandelier in your dining room.

With either the secured or unsecured option, Best Egg funds personal loans in a hurry. The lender estimates half of its borrowers get next-day funding. Otherwise, it can take up to three business days.

APRs start at 5.99% for Best Egg’s secured loans and 8.99% for unsecured loans. Origination fees range from 0.99% to 8.99%, and you can choose repayment terms up to 60 months. As a bonus, Best Egg doesn’t require extra paperwork for loan amounts under $50,000.

Best for thin credit: Upstart

Editorial rating: 4.8 out of 5

  • Most loan funds delivered the next business day
  • Unique approval process looks at education and income as well as credit
  • Low minimum loan amount

Consider Upstart if you need a quick loan for bad credit—or little to no credit. Upstart doesn’t set credit score minimums. Instead, the lender analyzes other factors, including education and income.

Funding times are fast with Upstart. The lender reports that 61% of borrowers received their funds by the next business day when they signed their loan agreements by 5 p.m. Eastern on the preceding business day.

Upstart offers a wide range of APRS, from 7.80% to 35.99%. Origination fees are between 0% and 12%, and repayment terms start at 36 months. Upstart also lets you check your rates before applying without hurting your credit.

Best for credit card debt: Happy Money

Editorial rating: 4.8 out of 5

  • Personal support from Member Advocates
  • Designed for credit card debt consolidation
  • Could improve your credit score

Happy Money designs loans for borrowers who want to consolidate high-interest credit card debt with a fixed-rate loan. After consolidating with Happy Money, you’ll make one single payment with no late fees—and you could boost your credit.

Happy Money’s 2021 study showed that members who used its debt consolidation loan to pay off at least $5,000 in credit card debt saw a 40-point credit score increase within four months. Plus, origination fees are lower than other personal lenders, ranging from 0% to 5%.

The downside is slower funding times. Expect the deposit process to take up to six business days. Happy Money also has a higher starting APR than other lenders on our list. You can check your rates with just a soft pull, but your APR will be at least 11.72%.

Best for excellent credit: LightStream

Editorial rating: 4.8 out of 5

  • No origination or late fees
  • Large loan amounts
  • Same-day funding available

LightStream is among the fastest lenders on our list, offering quick loans with same-day funding.

However, the lender doesn’t provide preapproval. To be considered, you must complete a full application—including a hard credit check, which can lower your credit score by several points.

You’ll need a good or excellent credit score to qualify. LightStream also evaluates your assets, income, current debts, and payment history. If approved, you’ll enjoy repayment terms as long as 144 months, 0% origination fees, and an APR as low as 7.49%.

Should I take out a quick loan online?

Everyone’s situation is different. When considering a quick online loan, determine whether your planned use for the loan is worth the expense. All personal loans cost something in the form of interest and sometimes fees, regardless of credit score.

Check your credit score before loan shopping to understand your rate range. Many banks and credit card companies offer free credit score access. Or you can find a free educational version of your credit score online.

Here are the credit score ranges using the popular FICO scoring model:

Credit scoreCategory
300 – 579Poor
580 – 669Fair
670 – 739Good
740 – 799 Very good
800 – 850Exceptional

How to choose a quick personal loan

You should consider several features when comparing your options for quick loans. Start by looking at lenders that cater to your credit category. 

Those that offer a prequalification process perform a soft credit check to let you see terms you’ll likely qualify for. It only affects your credit score once you submit the loan application. These recommended lenders offer prequalification with just a soft inquiry:

  • SoFi
  • Upgrade
  • Achieve
  • Best Egg
  • Upstart
  • Happy Money

When you get loan terms to compare, look at all the potential personal loan costs, including:

CostWhat it isAvg. cost
Origination feeFee to process and fund your loan1% – 10%
Application feeFee to review your documents and loan request1% – 8%
Late feeCharge for not making on-time payments$10 – $100, or up to 5% of your payment amount
Prepayment penaltyCharge for paying off your loan too early1% – 2%

You’ll want to compare APRs between lenders. You can’t avoid having an APR the way you can avoid paying late fees or prepayment penalties. Use the prequalification process to ensure you’re getting the best possible APR before accepting a loan offer.

Try to balance affordable monthly payments with long-term savings too. For instance, a shorter loan comes with higher payments than loans with longer repayment periods, but you’ll pay less in interest over time. 

How to apply for a quick cash loan

Once you’ve selected your lender and loan offer, it’s time to complete the application process. Here’s how:

  1. Submit the complete online application.
  2. Provide required documentation, such as pay stubs and bank statements.
  3. Wait for loan approval (often same-day with online lenders).
  4. Review and sign the final loan agreement.
  5. Get funds deposited into your account. Most origination fees are deducted before you receive the money.

Alternatives to personal loans for fast funds

If a quick loan doesn’t feel right or you can’t get approved, consider these alternatives for speedy financing. 

Credit cards

Credit cards can come with higher interest rates than personal loans, averaging 21.47% in November 2023. Plus, paying off your balance can take a long time if you only make the minimum payment.

That said, credit card approvals are nearly instant. You’ll find out right away whether your application is accepted. After that, you just need to wait for the credit card to arrive in the mail, which can take seven to 10 business days.

Line of credit

Personal line of credits are like credit cards. But instead of using a card to pay for your expenses, you transfer funds from the credit line to your bank account. Then, interest accrues until you pay off your balance.

The downside is that approval requirements may be similar to a personal loan. You could improve your odds by applying with a bank or credit union where you already have an account in good standing.

Retirement plan loan

Another option to access emergency fast cash is a retirement plan loan. However, this alternative has several disadvantages to be aware of.

You don’t have to pay taxes or penalties as you would with a withdrawal, but loan payments are deducted from your paycheck. 

And if you leave your employer, you must repay the loan by the federal tax deadline of the following year. If you don’t, you’re subject to income tax and an early withdrawal penalty on the remaining balance.


Can I get a quick loan for bad credit?

Loan options exist even if you have a poor credit score. We recommend Upgrade as our best lender for fair and bad credit. For thin credit (meaning you have a limited amount of established credit history), we recommend Upstart.

When you explore quick loans for bad credit, avoid payday loans. These are known for sky-high fees that continue to grow if you can’t make your payments on time.

What is the best quick loan I can take out online?

It depends on your situation. Different lenders cater to unique types of borrowers. Here’s what to look for:

  • Credit profile that matches lender’s minimum
  • Low origination fee
  • Funding time that meets your needs
  • Monthly payments that work within your budget

What quick cash loans should you avoid?

Not all quick loans offer favorable terms for borrowers. Watch out for payday loans. These come with high fees and short repayment deadlines (often within two weeks). You may need to give access to your bank account for an automatic deduction on your payday.

On top of that, payday loans are only reported on your credit report if you default. If you make on-time payments, you don’t benefit from establishing a positive payment history.

Another type of high-interest loan to avoid is a title loan. Loan amounts are small, but your interest expense won’t be. 

Plus, instead of attaching to your paycheck like a payday loan, this financing uses your car as collateral. If you fall behind on payments, the lender can take possession of your car to cover the defaulted loan. 

Do any recommended quick loans offer same-day funding?

Consider these lenders for fast loans:

LenderSame-day fundsNext-day fundsFunds within a few days
Best Egg
Happy Money
Light Stream

What are the risks of quick personal loans?

Evaluating any personal loan offer, especially those advertised as fast, is essential. Many lenders may charge high origination fees, which lowers the loan funds you receive.

Interest rates could also be high. Review how much you’ll pay in interest and any prepayment penalties.

We only recommend trusted lenders with APR ranges that don’t exceed 36%. We also look for  lenders with no or low fees. Our recommendations come with various loan terms to choose from so you can pick a monthly payment that works for your budget.

What can I do to speed up getting my loan funds?

Prepare your financial documentation in advance. You might need your Social Security number, recent pay stubs, and bank statements. Check each lender’s requirements before you apply to ensure a quick and smooth application process.

Recap of quick personal loan lenders

LenderBest forTime to fund
SoFiGood creditSame day
UpgradeFair creditWithin 1 day
AchieveChoosing payment date24 – 72 hours
Best EggSecured loans24 hours
UpstartThin (little to no) credit1 business day
Happy MoneyCredit card debt3 – 6 business days
LightStreamExcellent credit Same day