Bad Credit Personal Loans

Millions of consumers are getting new options and access to products they need with bad credit loans – without sacrificing the quality of the products. An increasing number of people are getting personal loans with bad credit every day. In this guide, we’re going to cover the following:

  1. What is a Bad Credit Personal Loan?
  2. Easy Ways to Apply for a Loan with Bad Credit
  3. What Can You Buy with a Personal Loan?
  4. Popular Types of Loans for Bad Credit
  5. Bad Credit Personal Loans FAQs

What Is a Bad Credit Personal Loan?

A bad credit personal loan is a loan for consumers with no or low credit scores.

This type of loan usually offers a fixed interest rate and is repaid in fixed monthly installments – but that can vary based on the state and lender.

Not sure where you fall on the credit scale? Here’s the breakdown:

close up of credit report paper with poor score
  • No credit (0) – You cannot have a credit score without a credit history. A zero credit score indicates you haven’t applied for a loan or credit card ever (or in a LONG time).
  • Bad (300 – 579) – Credit scores in this range are below average and associated with a bad credit report history. In this range, many lenders will refuse your loan application, but credit approval varies by provider.
  • Fair (580-669) – Credit in this range is slightly too far below average and can still be problematic when it comes to financing. You may still have trouble with some lenders who prefer better credit and offer the lowest rates. Scores in this range can often be rehabilitated through good financial practices to help move toward the higher end of this range.
  • Good (670-739) – Most people in the US have credit scores that fall within this range. To some potential lenders, a good rating might imply that you can manage your credit accounts without defaulting, so you’ll likely have more options for potential lenders if your score is within this range.
  • Very Good (740-799) – If your score is in this range, you have great credit, your financial behavior exceeds the average, and you are likely to be considered a responsible borrower. With scores in this range comes the potential to access better credit cards and lower interest rates on loans, mortgages, and credit cards.
  • Exceptional (800-850) – Scores above 800 can help qualify for some of the best loan terms and interest rates in the market.

How Bad Credit Personal Loans Work

Bad credit personal loan options work similarly to any other loan, except that they are designed for borrowers with no credit score or a low credit score. Those with no credit score or bad credit histories are generally ineligible for traditional loans from banks and credit unions since credit history often still has a large influence on approvals in conventional financing.

Increased accessibility to bad credit personal loans has made it possible for many people to apply and get the funds they need.

Today, more online lenders are beginning to offer borrowers bad credit personal loans at affordable rates. Making the monthly payments on time may help rebuild credit history, making it possible to apply for loans from more traditional lenders in the future.

What Can You Get with a Personal Loan?

A personal loan is an excellent way to obtain financing to cater to necessary expenses that arise. Personal loans are sometimes an alternative to credit card loans and can often be paid back in fixed monthly installments.

There are many practical uses for bad credit personal loans, including:

Emergency Expenses

If you have a sudden emergency, like medical bills, car repairs, etc., you can get a personal loan to pay for it without having to wait. Since some cash loans can be disbursed quickly, they may be a fitting way to cover emergency and unexpected expenses.


Home Improvement and Remodeling

People often take out personal loans to improve or remodel their homes. This includes making necessary repairs like redoing the electrical wiring and fixing plumbing issues or optional upgrades like new kitchen countertops.

Person Transferring Money On Phone

Debt Consolidation

Personal loans can sometimes be used to consolidate high-interest debts or just make managing money easier. Combining all your outstanding balances into one monthly payment can sometimes make it easier to manage. But this isn’t generally a great option if you’re getting a loan with bad credit since it won’t give you the advantage of the lower overall cost.

Household Appliance Purchases

If you are looking for a way to purchase quality household appliances like washers, dryers, refrigerators, and more, a personal loan can help you do so. Utilizing a personal loan can help you take the appliance home sooner than other payment methods, such as layaway plans.

woman and son loading washer with clothes


If you want to advance your education or want to cover the cost of continuing education, a personal loan from a lender can help you do just that. Please note that different lenders will have different qualifications and approval requirements.


Travel Expenses

You can take out a personal loan if you are planning on traveling. Whether you need money for your honeymoon, a cruise vacation, or a trip to the Caribbean Islands, personal loans can provide you with the funds you need.

woman working on laptop in office building

Vehicle Purchase

If you want to cover the costs of a car, utilizing a personal loan is an excellent way to obtain the necessary funds. However, not all loan providers will allow funds to be used for vehicles, so ask in advance if this is your goal.

Ultimately, whatever you choose to do with your loan will depend on your personal needs. Your ability to commit to timely repayment terms may help you improve your credit score, making it easier to apply for loans with traditional lenders in the future.


Apply for a Loan with Bad Credit Online

American First Finance is a leading online payment solutions provider that provides payment solutions to buyers with low credit scores and bad credit histories*. Apply online today and get an approval decision in minutes*. Get access to thousands of locally owned and well-known retailers across the country.
We consider more than just your credit history. Apply online today and see what you may be approved for.

Find a Store

Search for stores by ZIP code and choose your preferred store near you.


On the store page, click “Apply”, then fill out our fast & easy application.


If approved, use your financing to get the goods or services you need.


Bad Credit Loans for Products & Services

It’s a myth that loans are always a bad idea. In fact, in some cases, they can be a good option worth considering. Unlike other financial tools like leases, loans allow you to get services and products, including auto repairs, dental work, plastic surgery, tattoos, and more.

For instance, if you don’t have the money right now to buy a new refrigerator, but you need to purchase one, a loan may be the solution – or you may consider a lease. With a loan, you can get the products or services you want without having to wait for your next paycheck.

Popular Uses for Bad Credit Personal Loans

Bad credit loans can help you to finance a variety of different products and services. For example, if you need to purchase a new washing machine but don’t have the money at the moment to do so, a bad credit loan could help cover the cost of acquiring one.

Borrowing money without perfect credit is not always easy, but with the right lender and options, it doesn’t have to be difficult, especially if you’re in a tough spot.


Here are some examples** of products and services that are available if you are approved for a bad credit loan.

  • Furniture
  • Tires/Wheels
  • Dental
  • Appliances
  • Instruments
  • Electronics
  • Pet Needs
  • Home Repairs
  • Rent Advance

Choose from our Network of Stores


Credit Scores & Trends in the US

There are a lot of misconceptions about the credit economy and people who have bad credit. And while it’s true that many people with low credit scores can be denied loans or even credit cards, there is an entire population of consumers out there who haven’t had access to traditional lenders due to their bad credit. That’s because they may not qualify for a conventional loan but still need money to pay bills, buy food or pay rent.

These consumers might have been forced into alternative lending options like payday loans which come with high-interest rates and might make things worse instead of better.

Bad credit personal loans have opened new credit opportunities to many consumers who haven’t had success in the past due to low credit scores. Bad credit loans help borrowers access basic furniture like beds, and tables, appliances like refrigerators, and air conditioners, and electronics like phones and TVs.


Popular Types of Personal Loans for Bad Credit

Traditional lenders have a difficult time approving those with bad credit for personal loans or financing products. This makes it difficult for people with credit scores considered “Fair” and below to gain access to normal financing options. With bad credit personal loan providers, you can still seek approval with less-than-perfect credit.

Some of the alternative financing options for those with bad credit include:

1. Payday Loans

Payday loans are short-term loans that cater to emergencies and may have very high-interest rates. They are unsecured personal loans that don’t require any collateral. Payday loans are available both online and in person.
While payday loans don’t usually require a good credit score, you must provide your current income documents, including paycheck stubs, employer information, and bank account routing numbers.

close up of mans hands typing on keyboard

Payday Loan Pros:

    • Approval is quick and relatively easy
    • They don’t require any collateral
    • Usually no credit check is required

Payday Loan Cons:

    • Extremely high-interest rates
    • It can create debt traps
    • Risk of Cost Proliferation

2. Secured & Unsecured Loans

A secured loan is a type of loan in which the borrower pledges some kind of asset as collateral equal to the loan amount. This sometimes includes a home or a car. If you default on payment, the lender can technically take possession of the collateral until you settle the debt.
Alternatively, an unsecured loan can get you funding without requiring you to pledge assets and can be acquired without providing any collateral. Unlike a secured loan, unsecured loans might come with high-interest rates. Common unsecured loans include student loans, personal loans, and credit cards.

Secured Loan Pros:

    • Lower interest rates
    • Longer repayment periods
    • Larger loan amounts


Unsecured Loan Pros:

    • Simple application process
    • Require no collateral

Secured Loan Cons:

    • Requires collateral


Unsecured Loan Cons:

    • Lower loan amounts
    • Higher interest rates

3. Cash Advances

Cash advances are small short-term loans usually taken in cash, credit card cash withdrawals, or rent cash advances. They are unsecured loans and often don’t require any collateral. They usually last from a few weeks to a few months.
To qualify for a cash advance, you usually need to provide proof of income, a personal check, a bank statement, and personal identification, such as your social security number. If you don’t have a personal check, you can provide a debit card or ACH authorization.

store associate working point of sale system

Cash Advance Pros:

    • Easy to access
    • Have fewer requirements
    • Require no collateral
    • May not be affected by bad credit history

Cash Advance Cons:

    • Potentially High APR
    • Paying for Convenience

4. Student Loans for Bad Credit

Bad credit student loans are unsecured loans with low-interest rates for students enrolled in accredited programs at approved colleges and universities. Student loans are usually used to pay tuition expenses, buy books, cover lab expenses, parking, or health center fees. Most people can qualify for a student loan with no credit score or with a bad credit history.

Student Loan Pros:

    • Helps access educational resources
    • Bad credit histories may not affect your eligibility

Student Loan Cons:

    • No federal subsidy
    • New Career/Repayment difficulties
    • Wide-ranging interest rates

5. Bank Agreements

If you qualify, you can either apply in person or online and potentially get a bank agreement.
Bank Agreement Pros:

    • Fast approval process
    • You get instant access to money without having to wait for personal checks
    • Good option if you need a short-term loan
business woman excited looking at laptop

Additional Uses of Bad Credit Personal Loans

Bad credit personal loans give you access to funds to help you deal with large, unexpected expenses. They’re flexible and have low, easy fixed repayment schedules. Other additional uses of bad credit personal loans include:

  • Furniture
  • Kitchen Tables
  • Mattresses
  • Bedroom Sets
  • Appliances
  • Refrigerators
  • HVAC Units
  • Washers
  • Electronics
  • Laptops
  • Gaming PCs
  • Jewelry
  • Engagement Rings
  • Necklaces
  • Wedding Rings
  • Services
  • Dental Work
  • Cosmetic Surgery
  • Tattoos

Bad Credit Personal Loans in Summary

Bad credit personal loans are an alternative payment solution that helps people with poor credit and bad credit histories access loans and financing to fit their needs. Bad credit personal loans can range from small, short-term personal loans to medium-sized installment loans with affordable monthly payments and higher repayment periods depending on the agreement terms.

American First Finance is a leading payment solution provider that offers a wide range of financial products, including bad credit loans. With our easy online application, you can get decisions in as soon as minutes*. Get the financing you requested upon approval and pay back with affordable, monthly payments.

**Decisions and funding may take additional time and not be same-day, including if more information is needed to complete the application.

Woman Talking With Salesman

Bad Credit Personal Loans FAQs

Below you will find the most frequently asked questions about bad credit personal loans.

Q: What Qualifies as a “Bad Credit” Personal Loan?

A: Bad credit is defined as having a credit score below 580. Bad credit loans can help borrowers with bad credit access loans, even with no or low credit scores.


Q: Can I Get Approved for a Personal Loan Even With Bad Credit?

A: Yes, it is possible to get approved for a personal loan, even with bad credit. Not everyone will be approved, but having a bad credit score does not automatically mean you will be denied. Your credit will be checked, but having no or a low credit score does not automatically disqualify you.


Q: How Can I Apply for a Personal Loan with Bad Credit?

A: You can apply for personal loans right here on our website. Please note that while not everyone will be approved, bad credit doesn’t automatically mean you’ll be denied.


Q: What Are the Best Personal Loans?

A: The best personal loans are ones you’re able to qualify for with the most favorable repayment terms and lowest rates. Always be sure you understand all applicable terms and conditions and financial implications clearly before agreeing to any financial agreement or contract or seeking professional financial advice.