Which is the best app to get an instant loan? With all of the apps that loan people funding, it can be difficult to tell which ones are genuine and which ones are a scam. This is why it is always important to borrow money the smart way by researching lenders and loan products before applying anywhere.
Here you will find all the essential information consumers need to know about some of the most popular cash advance apps available. Once you have all the facts, you can determine if a cash advance app is right for you or if you are better off going with another option.
What Is a Cash Advance Loan App?
A cash advance app is a service that provides qualified consumers with quick cash advances while they wait for their next paycheck. Consumers often use cash advance apps to cover unexpected expenses that pop up when in between a pay period.
Using a cash advance app can help you avoid accidentally overdrawing from your bank or checking account when you are short on money. If you overdraft your bank account and don’t pay it back, you may see a significant drop in your credit score the next time you pull a report. Having a low credit score can then cause other financial problems for you, such as:
- Difficulty finding approval on loans in the future.
- Getting stuck with high-interest rates or extremely low loan amounts.
- Difficulties getting approved for mortgages or leases.
Benefits of Cash Advance Apps
Depending on how responsibly you use a cash advance app, they can often come with many benefits. You can take advantage of the following perks with most cash advance apps:
- Instant cash advances to approved users.
- All credit types considered.
- May be a more affordable option over overdraft fees/charges.
Top Six Cash Advance Apps
With so many cash advance apps out there, it can be challenging to pick the best one. Which one will help you the most if your bank account goes negative?
Below you will find essential information on some of the most popular cash advance apps used by consumers today! Check out the information below to help you determine which app might work best for you.
Consumers who have overdrawn their bank account and have no money may be able to turn to Chime for help. Chime is a financial service app that offers products like:
- Secured credit card.
- Savings accounts.
- Checking account services such as overdraft protection.
Since Chime is not a bank, they do not offer checking accounts within their own platform. However, you can connect your Chime account to your bank checking account to help you out with overdraft fees.
With Chime, you can overdraw up to $200 from your checking account without acquiring any fees. Then, on your next payday, Chime will withdraw the borrowed funds directly from your bank account.
MoneyLion is a cash advance app that also offers other services like:
- Credit-builder loans.
- Credit report information.
- Mobile bank accounts.
- Investment accounts.
- Other helpful financial tools.
For cash advances, MoneyLion offers users up to $250-$300 depending on borrower qualifications. While MoneyLion does not charge any mandatory fees, MoneyLion checking account users who want their funding instantly will have to pay a small fee.
MoneyLion also requires that users have a bank account. Similar to other cash advance apps, MoneyLion will withdraw funds directly from a user’s checking account to repay their balance.
Earnin is a work-based cash advance app that allows users to receive payment as soon as they are done working! To utilize Earnin, you will have to connect a bank account and track your working hours. After the workday, you can use the Cash Out tool to request a cash amount from $100 to $500. Then, when you receive your next paycheck, Earnin will withdraw funds to pay back your loan amount.
The basic features of Earnin allow users to receive money within three business days at no charge. For users who would like funding within a few hours or minutes, they may opt for the Earnin Lightning Speed program and pay an express fee of $1.99-$3.99.
Users can borrow cash advances up to $250 and set up an internal checking account with Dave. A Dave spending account acts similar to a traditional bank checking account, except Dave does not charge any overdraft or low-balance fees to account holders.
While Dave does charge a $1 monthly membership fee, they have no other mandatory fees. However, borrowers who want to receive their cash advances in eight hours instead of within several days will have to pay a fee that could range from $1.99-$5.99.
Brigit is a more expensive cash advance, costing up to $9.99 per month. However, this higher pricing comes with included perks like:
- Free access to financial experts who can help borrowers organize their finances.
- Free 24/7 access to credit check and credit-building tools.
- Access to tools that can connect users to gig work and other employment opportunities.
- $1 million in identity theft insurance.
- Instant funding and automatic advances to prevent bank account overdrafts.
- Cash advances between $50 – $250 available.
As a financial technology company, Current offers protection to consumers who overdraw from their bank accounts. While Current is not a direct cash advance app, they offer many of the same benefits that come with most cash advance apps. For example, Current starts by giving each user who receives at least $500 in qualifying monthly direct deposits a $25 overdraft limit, free of fees. Users can then work to increase that limit to $200.
To pay back a balance with Current, the app will withdraw funds from the user’s bank account the next time they receive a direct deposit paycheck or make any other deposits into their checking account.
How To Find the Best Cash Advance Apps
To find the best cash advance app, compare a few key borrowing elements. Some apps may have better rates, terms, or perks that work better for your personal financial situation.
Compare Interest Rates
Interest rates will have the biggest impact on how much you must repay for your cash advance. Typically, borrowers with a higher credit score will have an easier time receiving lower rates.
Consider Fees or Extra Charges
Many cash advance apps come with charges like:
- Monthly membership fees.
- Paycheck fees.
- Fast cash instant funding fees.
Before you create an account and commit to an app, make sure you can afford any potential fees that may come up.
Compare Payback Terms
Some cash advance apps require borrowers to pay back their balance as soon as they receive their next paycheck. Other apps allow borrowers to choose a repayment date.
Look at Reviews / Ask People You Know
Look at online reviews, or ask a few trusted friends/family members about their cash advance app experience. Reviews and old-fashioned word of mouth can be a great way to find out which cash advance apps have excellent customer service, funding times, loan amounts, and more.
Are Cash Advance Loan Apps Safe?
Before committing to any one cash advance app, consider the potential disadvantages.
While cash advance apps help borrowers prevent overdrafts, they are not a foolproof option. If you have insufficient funds in your bank account when your cash advance provider requires repayment, you may still end up with a bank account overdraft.
The high-interest rates on most cash advance funding also puts borrowers at risk of overdraft fees in the future, which could cause them to end up in a cycle of debt.
Not a Smart Long-Term Financial Solution
Cash advances are meant to be a quick financial solution that borrowers can resolve in a few weeks or less. If you are dealing with massive debt, a cash advance may not be able to offer you sufficient funds.
Many Require Bank Account Access
Most cash advance apps require your bank account number and your routine number. These two numbers give cash advance apps access to either withdraw or add funds to your checking account. Before giving out this important information, ensure the cash advance app you plan to use is legitimate.
Alternatives to a Cash Advance App
There are also other options to consider if you don’t want to take out a loan with a cash advance app.
A personal loan is a kind of funding that allows borrowers to pay back their balance in monthly installments. Borrowers can access personal loans via private direct lenders or banks. Personal loans often come in the form of:
- Debt consolidation loans.
- Bad credit loans.
- Credit builder loans.
Since personal loans are often considered flexible loans, borrowers can utilize them as either long-term or short-term loans. So, whether you are looking to cover a few hundred dollars until your next paycheck or combine debt from multiple lenders into one payment, a personal loan could help you out!
Credit Union Loans
Credit unions are another type of financial institution that may offer personal installment loans. However, credit unions often have strict approval requirements that may make it harder for some consumers to receive approval.
Car Title Loans
Car title loans allow borrowers to put up their free-and-clear vehicle as collateral in order to secure loan funding. If a borrower fails to pay back their car title loan, the lender would have the legal right to repossess their vehicle.
A payday loan is a form of high-interest, short-term funding. While payday loans were designed to help people receive extra cash while they are in between paychecks, they often leave people in a cycle of debt instead. When borrowers receive a pay day loan online, they are expected to pay back their balance in full within about two weeks or less. Since this is an extremely inconvenient payback schedule for most consumers, many payday loan borrowers have trouble paying back their loans and end up getting stuck with unmanageable interest rates.
The Bottom Line: Cash Advance Apps
Cash advance apps are available for consumers looking for funding to help them get by until their next paycheck. However, these apps often come with high-interest rates, fees, and other inconveniences borrowers may want to avoid.
Instead, consider other financial options like dipping into your savings, opting to transfer money from another account, or requesting a short-term personal loan.
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