Low income loans

Learn about the loans available for low income earners.

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Loans for low income borrowers include short-term loans, small personal loans and Centrelink cash advances, with lenders ranging from traditional financial institutions to alternative finance lenders. As every loan has different rates, fees and requirements, comparing a variety of options can help you figure out what is suitable for your circumstances. This page goes through some of the different loans available, as well as what to think about before deciding whether or not to apply.

Financial hardship


If you're experiencing financial hardship and would like to speak to someone for free financial counselling, you can call the Financial Counsellors hotline on 1800 007 007. It is open from 9:30am to 4pm, Monday to Friday. When comparing short term loans, ensure you take into consideration any fees, charges and rates you may be charged. It's important to weigh up all your options before applying for any form of credit.

⚠️ Warning about Borrowing

payday-warningDo you really need a loan today?*

It can be expensive to borrow small amounts of money and borrowing may not solve your money problems.

Check your options before you borrow:

  • For information about other options for managing bills and debts, ring 1800 007 007 from anywhere in Australia to talk to a free and independent financial counsellor
  • Talk to your electricity, gas, phone or water provider to see if you can work out a payment plan
  • If you are on government benefits, ask if you can receive an advance from Centrelink: Phone: 13 17 94

The Government's MoneySmart website shows you how small amount loans work and suggests other options that may help you.

* This statement is an Australian Government requirement under the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009.

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What personal loan options do I have if I have a low income?

  • Personal loans for small amounts. Some lenders and traditional financial institutions offer personal loans for low income applicants as long as the amount requested is small.
  • Short-term loans. A short-term or payday loan offers small amounts of funds over a limited period of time, typically between 2 and 12 months.
  • Centrelink advance payments. If you receive Centrelink payments, you may be eligible to get some of the payment early. This is known as an advance payment, which is then repaid out of future Centrelink payments.
  • Low income credit cards. Some lenders offer low income credit cards if you can prove you meet minimum income requirements, usually at least $15,000 p.a. However, low income credit cards may have high interest rates, annual fees and other costs that can increase the risk of debt.
  • Alternative loan options. Other low income loan options include payday loans and no-interest loans from Good Shepherd Microfinance as part of their No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS) program. Here, you may qualify for anywhere from $300 to $1,200 and are only responsible for paying back the borrowed quantity, meaning no interest or fees.

Compare a range of short term loans

Updated November 12th, 2019
Name Product Maximum Loan Amount Term of Loan Turnaround time Arrears Fee Costs Fortnightly Repayment (for $1500 Loan)
$2,000
62 days to 9 months
1 hour - conditions apply
$15
10% of loan amount + 2% of loan amount each month
$348
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A loan up to $2,000 with terms up to 62 days to 9 months. Centrelink cannot be your primary source of income.
$2,000
9-12 weeks
30 minutes - conditions apply
$35
20% of loan amount + 4% of loan amount each month
$396
A small loan up to $2,000 that you repay over 9-12 weeks. Loans approved and funded in as little as 30 minutes. Centrelink must not be your primary income
$2,000
Up to 2 years
3 hours - conditions apply
$10
47.8%
$316.70
Apply for up to $2,000 and be able to access your approved loan as a convenient line of credit.
$5,000
22 - 52 weeks
Same day - conditions apply
$35
Up to $2,000 - 20% establishment fee + 4% monthly.

Above $2,000 - $400 + from 8.7% to 48% APR
$396
Borrow from $1,000 to $5,000 with same-day funding and no early repayment fees.
$2,000
6-12 months
Same day - conditions apply
$10
20% of loan amount establishment fee + 4% of loan amount monthly.
$396
Credit24 offers this loan up to $2,000 and gives you 12 months to repay.
$2,000
3-12 months
1 business day
$35
Establishment fee from 10% of loan amount + monthly fee from 2%
$354
A small loan between $500 and $2,000 that can be funded in 24 hours.
$2,000
3 to 12 months
1 business day
$5
10% of loan amount + 2% of loan amount each month
$348
A small loan up to $2,000 from a lender backed by NAB. Transparent eligibility criteria and competitive costs.

Compare up to 4 providers

What income do I need to get a loan?

Although some lenders list a minimum income requirement, other lenders do not. If a lender sets no minimum income requirement, then look at the other requirements to make sure you meet them.

LenderLoan typeMinimum incomeLearn more
Cash ConvertersMedium Personal Loan$750 per weekMore
Cash TrainCash Loan$1,200 per monthMore
Credit24Medium Term Loan$600 per monthMore
DollarsDirectShort Term Personal LoanNo minimumMore
Fair Go FinancePersonal Loan$500 per weekMore
FerratumPayday LoanNo minimumMore
MoneyMeShort Term LoanNo minimumMore
NimbleShort Term LoanNo minimumMore
Sunshine LoansShort Term Loan$300 per weekMore
Swoosh FinancePersonal LoanNo minimumMore
LenderLoan typeMinimum incomeLearn more
act.Unsecured Personal LoanNo minimumMore
ANZPersonal Loan$15,000 p.a.More
BankwestUnsecured Personal LoanNo minimumMore
Bank of MelbourneUnsecured Personal LoanNo minimumMore
BankSAUnsecured Personal LoanNo minimumMore
bcuUnsecured Multipurpose LoanNo minimumMore
Bendigo BankUnsecured Personal LoanNo minimumMore
CitiReady Credit$40,000 p.a.More
Commonwealth BankUnsecured Personal LoanNo minimumMore
CUAPersonal LoanNo minimumMore
IMBPersonal LoanNo mimumumMore
Latitude FinancialPersonal Loan$24,000 p.a.More
ME BankPersonal LoanNo minimumMore
NABPersonal LoanNo minimumMore
RACQUnsecured Personal LoanNo minimumMore
RACVPersonal LoanNo minimumMore
RateSetterPeer-to-Peer LoanNo minimumMore
Society OnePeer-to-Peer Loan$30,000 p.a.More
St.GeorgeUnsecured Personal LoanNo minimumMore
WestpacUnsecured Personal Loan$15,000 p.a.More

How to compare low income loan options

Make sure you take the following factors into consideration when comparing different loans:

  • Interest rate. Interest charges add to the overall costs of borrowing money, so it's essential to check this rate and compare it to other options. Also, be aware that with variable interest rates, the lender could change the rate you pay on your loan.
  • Comparison rate. The comparison rate takes into account both the lender's interest rate and other fees charged with the loan. This can help you get a better idea of the overall cost of a loan.
  • Fees and charges. These include ongoing fees such as monthly or annual service charges, as well as one-off fees such as application fees and early repayment fees.
  • Loan term. This is the length of time in which you’re required to pay back the loan. Personal loan terms can range from a few months (for short-term loans) to five or more years.
  • Repayments. Loan repayments are typically monthly, fortnightly or weekly for a set amount of money. This makes it important to check the required repayment amount before applying. It's also worth checking whether or not a lender accepts additional repayments or variations.
  • Minimum and maximum amounts. Loans may have requirements around the minimum and maximum amount that can be borrowed. This is an important feature to check so that you can make sure you don't borrow more (or less) than what's required.
  • Secured vs unsecured. Some lenders may require collateral – such as a home or business equity – as security for your loan. This means if your loan goes into default status, your lender has the right to seize any collateral you have committed as security for the borrowed money.

What to watch out for

  • Falling into too much debt. Make sure you avoid a situation where you get into too much debt. This means you must carefully weigh your future monthly income with your monthly repayments on any loan you commit to. Also, make sure to avoid applying for a loan amount that’s more than what you actually need.
  • Applying for too many credit products. Lenders can see exactly how many times you’ve applied for loans. Applying for several loans within a short period of time increases the risk for lenders, which can make it harder to get approved.

Have more questions about borrowing on a low income?

What if I’m unemployed?

It may be possible to qualify for certain types of credit if you can show you receive some sort of income, whether from Centrelink payments, self-employed income, or other forms of regular deposits into your bank account such as share payments. Find out which lenders may consider applicants who are unemployed.

How much can I apply for?

This depends on the particular lender and type of loan you’re applying for. Keep in mind that applying as a low income borrower would likely mean you’d qualify for a lesser amount than a borrower with normal income.

Picture: Shutterstock

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6 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    KaJuly 13, 2019

    I want to ask. I’m in Ontario, Canada. I have a job and I earn $730 a month. Do I qualify?

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JoshuaJuly 14, 2019Staff

      Hi Kala,

      Thanks for getting in touch with Finder. I hope all is well with you. 😃

      If you are in Ontario, you might want to check this Finder Canada page. On this page, you will learn more more about how to apply for easy-approval loans if you have low income. On the same page, you will also be able to check your options and compare based on the loan amount, turnaround time, and term of loan. Once you’re done comparing, you can then click on the “Go to site” green button to learn more.

      Please make sure that you’ve read the relevant T&Cs or PDS of the loan products before making a decision. Moreover, check the eligibility requirements as well and consider whether the product is right for you.

      I hope this helps. Should you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach us out again.

      Have a wonderful day!

      Cheers,
      Joshua

  2. Default Gravatar
    SabarudinJanuary 29, 2019

    How much can I borrow with low income and with who

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JohnJanuary 30, 2019Staff

      Hi Sabarudin,

      Thank you for reaching out to finder.

      The guide we are on offers the maximum amount each lender offers for approved applicants. You will see this in the comparison table. (Second Column from the left). Kindly review and compare your options on the table displaying the available providers. Once you have chosen a particular provider, you may then click on the “Go to site” button and you will be redirected to the provider’s website where you can proceed with the application or get in touch with their representatives for further inquiries you may have.

      Before applying, please ensure that you meet all the eligibility criteria and read through the details of the needed requirements as well as the relevant Product Disclosure Statements/Terms and Conditions when comparing your options before making a decision on whether it is right for you. Hope this helps!

      Cheers,
      Reggie

  3. Default Gravatar
    NikkiNovember 30, 2017

    Can i find a lender who can do loans for low income earners up to $100,000 to buy a block.of land? i have $28,000 deposit and a good credit rating.

    • Avatarfinder Customer Care
      HaroldNovember 30, 2017Staff

      Hi Nikki,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      1. If you are looking for a short-term loan you are already on the right page. You can use this guide to optimize your comparison process.

      2. Re on buying a block of land, this can vary greatly between lenders but, as a general rule, the larger the property the lower the LVR you will be able to borrow. You can read our guide here for your reference.

      I hope this information has helped.

      Cheers,
      Harold

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