Best Payday Loan Alternatives in New York of November 2022


If you are a New York resident needing quick cash, you might have heard of payday loans and related horror stories. With 400% APRs and outrageous fees, short-term payday loans are illegal in New York. At best, NY allows a 25% APR cap on short-term loans, an acceptable number that lowers fees and chances of entering a debt cycle.

Fortunately, there are many options available to New Yorkers with bad credit. Our recommended payday loan alternatives offer APRs as low as 5.99%, loan amounts up to $100,000, and generous loan repayment terms between 12 to 60 months. In addition, many of them require no minimum credit scores, DTIs, and other barriers to entry — just like payday loans minus the fuss.

Keep reading to learn more about the best payday loan alternatives in New York, our top recommendations, pros, cons, eligibility criteria, and the borrower profiles they are best for.

Lender: Loan Amount: APR: Min. Credit Score: Best For:
LifeLoans $100 – $40,000 5.99% – 35.99% Undisclosed Low APRs
Earnin $100 – $500 0% Undisclosed No or bad credit
Brigit $50 – $250 0% Undisclosed No interest
Klarna Undisclosed Up to 24.99% Undisclosed “Pay in 4” installment plan
NetCredit $1,000 – $10,000 As high as 150% Undisclosed Bad credit
LendUp Up to $500 229.43% – 1,000% Undisclosed Small, unsecured loans
Upstart $1,000 – $50,000 3.09% – 35.99% 300 Low credit scores, high DTI ratios
GHS Federal Credit Union $200 – $1,000 Up to 28% Undisclosed GHS Federal Credit Union customers
First Tech Federal Credit Union $500 – $50,000 7.70% – 18% Undisclosed First Tech Federal Credit Union customers
Navy Federal Credit Union $250 – $50,000 7.49% – 18% Undisclosed Navy Federal Credit Union customers
Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union $500 – $25,000 As low as 8.49% Undisclosed Mid-Hudson Valley Credit Union customers

Our Marketplace

ElitePersonalFinance allows you to compare quotes from multiple lenders. Make a well-informed decision with insights from our top finance experts from ElitePersonalFinance.

Best Payday Loan Alternatives and Laws in New York of November 2022: Key Findings

Bad credit New York borrowers can borrow as little as $100 per day with 0% interest using loan apps like Earnin.

To enjoy lower interest rates, bad credit borrowers have the option of taking out secured loans or enlisting the help of a co-signer on unsecured loans.

Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) services like Klarna offer a “Pay in 4” option and an interest-free “Pay in 30” option to pay for goods at participating online retailers, a nice alternative to borrowing cash.

Personal loans for bad credit from credit unions can reach up to $100,000 with APR capped at 18%.

Many payday loan alternative lenders charge origination fees from 0 to 8.99% of the loan amount.

Why Trust ElitePersonalFinance Guides?

ElitePersonalFinance offers expertly written resource guides by industry experts, helping you make key decisions like choosing an alternative payday loan alternative in New York. In addition, we pride ourselves on our extensive research process, which assesses each lender based on APRs, repayment terms, fees, and other information consumers appreciate.

Only the most reputable companies make our bad credit lenders list. We are also continually updating our pages with the latest information in an ever-changing world of APRs, especially with rising inflation and other economic factors.

Please let us know if you would like to recommend a bad credit loan company outside our list. You may email ElitePersonalFinance at info @ and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

Earnin App

With more than 1 million members, Earnin is a solid PAL choice for bad credit New Yorkers looking to fund small emergency expenses or who need to bridge a gap between paychecks. Think of it as a paycheck advance option.

Unlike Klarna, which offers short-term payday advance alternative loan installment plans, Earnin is a paycheck advance service that is paid back automatically from your bank as soon as your next paycheck hits. That said, loan amounts range between $100 and $500, with borrowers able to withdraw up to $100 daily. Also, unlike Klarna and other online services, it does not charge an interest rate. Instead, an optional feature is to leave a tip of up to $14. People with bad credit or good credit can use this service.

Like Klarna, Earnin does not report your payment history to credit bureaus. However, qualifying is somewhat easy. Show proof of employment (50% of your paycheck must be directly deposited) or use Earnin’s online timekeeping system to enable GPS tracking to your place of work.

We like Earnin for people who prefer to have their next paycheck debited with the amount owed without worries about interest rates or fees from other payday advance alternative loans.


  • Can “tip” the app $0
  • No fees, no credit checks, or interest charges
  • Loans between $100 and $500
  • No minimum credit score required
  • Large tips on small loans could “indirectly” be a very high APR
  • Does not share your data with third parties


  • Short repayment terms
  • Need to have direct deposit income
  • $3.99 charge for shorter funding times
  • Up to 2 business day turnaround to receive funds
  • Must track and submit work hours

The Impact of Covid-19:

Earnin has an online help center with 24/7 live chat support and Facebook /Twitter DM customer service.


LifeLoans is an excellent payday loan alternative for NY’ers with bad credit looking for loans as little as $100 for quick, unexpected expenses.

Like Upstart, LifeLoans operates as an intermediary, connecting borrowers with a network of lenders, each with its own APRs, terms, and fee structure.

APRs with LifeLoans range from 5.99% – 35.99%. However, NYers with subprime to good credit scores should expect APRs in the 15%+ range. For perspective, a $5,000 loan at 15% APR on a 2-year repayment term would result in a total interest of $818.40 — not a bad deal compared to payday loans  with outrageous 400% APRs.

One of our favorite things about LifeLoans is its quick deposits, with funds directly deposited in as little as one business day. Another benefit is no minimum credit score. However, you must be 18 years of age with an active checking account and a minimum income of $1,000 monthly to qualify.

To get started, visit LifeLoans and begin the application process, which will ask for your desired loan amount, monthly income, and other personal details before being rerouted to a page with all of your eligible bad credit loan offers.


  • Large network of lenders
  • No minimum credit score
  • APRs of 5.99% – 35.99%
  • Generous repayment terms (3 to 60 months)
  • Good loan amount range ($100 – $40,000)


  • Lengthy application process
  • Must have a minimum monthly income of $1,000
  • Not as upfront with terms, costs, and fees as other platforms

The Impact of Covid-19:

As a platform that connects borrowers to lending partners, LifeLoans offers no forbearance or hardship programs. All forbearance policies lie with every individual lender. Please refer to leaders for these details.

Brigit App

Like Earnin, Brigit is a legit zero-interest, short-term payday advance loan alternative. It is an excellent choice for bad credit New Yorkers who want added value services to complement their lending, such as credit monitoring and budget tracking, for a small monthly fee.

We like Brigit’s terms for emergency expenses, offering paycheck advances or cash advances between $50 and $250 without charging any interest or prepayment penalties. No interest or prepayment penalties is a lot better than that many bad credit loan companies offer.

Unlike Earnin, who only collects tips, Brigit charges $9.99 for additional financial health services like credit monitoring and budget tracking.

To qualify, Brigit borrowers must have a checking account a minimum of 60 days old with a $0+ account balance and at least three recurring deposits from the same job. Once you present this proof, Brigit will assign a score to your account, with a minimum score of ’40 ‘ needed to qualify. The higher your score, the higher the alternative paycheck loan amount you are offered.


  • Zero interest
  • No credit checks
  • No late fees or penalties
  • Super low minimum loan amount ($50)
  • Added features for a monthly $9.99 fee


  • Strict checking account requirements
  • Lower max loan limit than Earnin ($250)
  • Shares your data with third-party apps
  • Checking account must be a minimum of 60 days old

The Impact of Covid-19:

Brigit NY borrowers do have the ability to extend payments if they are not able to repay on the due date. Go inside the app and request an extension credit, or contact Brigit’s live support line at


Klarna is an excellent choice for bad credit NY’ers who would prefer to pay for unexpected purchases with a pay-in-four installment plan over taking out short-term cash with a PAL or personal loan through a traditional online platform or credit union.

One of the few legitimate Buy Now, Pay Later apps out there, Klarna is activated at the point of purchase, extending two major financing options for borrowers – a “Pay in 4” option and an interest-free “Pay in 30” option. Interest generally runs up to 24.99% APR with late fees of $7 or 25% of each installment payment, whichever is less.

To qualify for Klarna’s Pay in 4 loans, you need to be a US resident/permanent resident aged 18 years or older with a checking account. From there, you can download the Klarna app or its Chrome extension to keep track of your payment history.


  • Soft inquiry
  • Same day guaranteed approval
  • No prepayment penalty
  • Lower APRs than some PALs
  • Accepted at many online retailers
  • “Pay in 4” and “Pay in 30” options
  • Option available to reschedule payment


  • $7 late fee if ten days overdue
  • Does not report payments to credit bureaus
  • Minimum credit score not disclosed

The Impact of Covid-19:

Klarna has many options for NY borrowers experiencing financial hardship. Their customer service team can be reached in-app or at (844) 552-7621 to discuss alternative payment arrangements.


NetCredit is a highly recommended, legitimate payday loan alternative best for bad credit New Yorkers looking for flexible terms and APRs on low amounts.

Payday loan alternatives from NetCredit run between $1,000 to $10,000 with 6 to 60-month repayment terms.

One of our favorite things about NetCredit is the number of positive reviews online. As of this writing, its Trustpilot score is 4.7 out of 10,000+ reviews. However, it’s subdued somewhat by outrageously high APRs (as high as 150% offered by some lenders). However, it is still well below the average payday loan APR of 400%.

As with all online lending networks, loan origination, late payment, prepayment, and other fees vary by bad credit loan company.

Our only knock on NetCredit is its origination fees of up to 5% and minimum loan amounts of $1,000. Those accustomed to payday advance loans offering $100 or $500 should look to a similar provider like LifeLoans, which starts at $100. However, you have up to 60 months to repay your loan, which beats the typical 14-day repayment period of payday advance loans.

To apply for a NetCredit loan, New Yorkers only need 18+ with an active personal checking account, email address, and recurring source of income.


  • Same day guaranteed approval
  • No prepayment fees
  • Wide repayment term range (6 to 60 months)
  • Soft inquiry to check eligibility
  • Paper checks and money orders accepted as payment


  • Origination fees of up to 5%
  • Some bad credit loan companies listed have 150% APRs
  • Higher than the average minimum ($1,000)

The Impact of Covid-19:

NetCredit is open to working with borrowers who cannot meet their payment obligations for whatever reasons. Discuss payment relief options with NetCredit by emailing or calling (877) 392-2016.


Founded in 2012, LendUp is a solid payday advance loan alternative for any New Yorker looking for rock-bottom, legitimate loan amounts (up to $500) and looking to build credit with on-time payments.

LendUp’s bad credit unsecured loans top out at $500, with APRs varying depending on the state and repayment timelines. Expect APRs anywhere from 229.43% to 1,000%. Although LendUp loan interest rates are higher than credit cards, the platform provides some of the least restrictive barriers to entry of all of our recommended lenders, including no soft or hard inquiry credit checks.


  • Same day guaranteed approval
  • No credit check
  • No prepayment fees
  • No minimum credit score required
  • Funds in as little as one business day


  • Late fees
  • Higher than average APRs
  • APRs with some bad credit loan companies as high as 1,000%
  • One-time returned check fee of $10 to $156

The Impact of Covid-19:

Some LendUp personal loans offer repayment extensions on lump sum unsecured loans without any late charges. We encourage you to contact your bad credit loan company directly if you are experiencing any hardships.


Upstart is an excellent choice for New Yorkers with low credit scores and high DTI ratios looking to be judged for creditworthiness based on factors other than income and credit scores.

APRs for Upstart payday loan alternatives are solid (3.09% to 35.99%), with a loan amount ranging from $1,000 to $50,000. Origination fees range from 0% to 8%, with fees automatically withheld from the loan before your first month’s balance is due. Although these borrowing rates are favorable, Upstart only allows two-term options, which are three or five-year terms. Other lenders we’ve reviewed in this guide like SoFi and First Tech Federal Credit Union offer greater flexibility.

All funds are dispersed to your checking account in as little as one business day, except education-related expenses, which can take up to three days for guaranteed approval. However, typical payday advance loan applications are looking to finance short-term projects and unexpected expenses, so Upstart is a fit.

Unlike LifeLoans, NetCredit, and LendUp, which require no credit scores or minimum credit scores, Upstart uses a proprietary AI algorithm to determine loan eligibility based on factors outside of income and credit score. These variables include work experience and education history. That said, even folks with 300 credit scores can qualify for some type of credit.


  • Same day approval on many loans
  • Low APRs (3.09% to 35.99%)
  • Loan amounts from $1,000 to $50,000
  • It takes as little as one business day to receive funds
  • Variables other than income and credit score used to qualify borrowers


  • Only two term lengths (3 or 5 years)
  • No co-signer option
  • No discounts for enrolling in autopay
  • Origination fees of up to 8%

The Impact of Covid-19:

Upstart does allow halted secured and unsecured loan payments if you are going through financial difficulties due to COVID, unemployment, and other covered events. You may call them at (855) 451-6753.

GHS Federal Credit Union – Binghamton, NY

GHS Federal Credit Union is an excellent choice for bad credit New Yorkers in the Binghamton and Norwich region looking to take out alternative payday loans New York between $200 and $1000.

We like GHS Federal Credit Union for its well-rounded offerings, starting with PALs with loan amounts ranging between $200 to $1000 with 28% APRs. Its repayment terms of 1 to 6 months are also more generous than traditional payday advance loans, known for 30-day periods.

To qualify for a GHS Federal Credit Union PAL, you must complete a loan application with two of your most recent pay stubs and a photo ID. Expect no credit checks and no lengthy processing times.

We like GHS Federal Credit Union as a PAL for upstate New Yorkers. They would appreciate a 28% APR over an outrageous 400% APR, saving potentially hundreds of dollars worth of interest over the life of your loan.


  • No credit checks
  • Loans of $200 to $1000
  • Easy application process
  • Repayment terms from 1 to 6 months


  • OK, not great, 28% APR
  • $30 insufficient funds fees
  • $20 application fee
  • PAL cannot be rolled over
  • Need to be a member of GHS for a minimum of 30 days

The Impact of Covid-19:

Although GHS Federal Credit Union does not explicitly mention hardship or forbearance programs on its website, they have a customer service line you can call to learn more about safe proofing your unsecured or secured loan. Call them at (800) 732-4447 or (607) 723-7962.

First New York Federal Credit Union – New York

First Tech Federal Credit Union is an excellent choice for bad credit New York borrowers looking for payday loan alternatives  that can defer the first payment up to 45 days.

PAL APRs with First Tech Federal Credit Union are solid (7.70% – 18%), with loan amounts ranging from $500 to $50,000. However, unlike most 14-day payday loan durations, this credit union offers repayment terms of 24 to 84 months, which may be too long for some people.

Another important thing to note about First Tech Federal Credit Union’s PALs is its qualification criteria. It’s stricter than payday lenders, requiring a minimum credit score of 660.

We like that First Tech Federal Credit Union’s PALs do not have origination, prepayment, or late fees. Plus, first payments can be made up to 45 days, an excellent condition for borrowers with an unstable income. Almost all payday loan lenders and alternative lenders do not offer late fee waivers or payment deferrals, making First Tech Federal Credit Union an intriguing choice.

As for signing up for First Tech Federal Credit Union, it’s easy. You must be 18 years or older, a US citizen/permanent resident with a regular income, and have a valid social security number.

Look to First Tech Federal Credit Union if you are looking for a 45-day initial payment deferment and excellent all-around APRs, even for those with poor credit.


  • Same day approval
  • Excellent APRs (7.70% – 18%)
  • No application, origination, or prepayment fees
  • Can defer first payment up to 45 days
  • DebtSafe optional payment protection


  • Must have regular income
  • Minimum 660 credit score required
  • Not all applicants receive a decision within one business day
  • Minimum 24-month repayment term (longer than most lenders)

The Impact of Covid-19:

For the latest information on First Tech Federal Credit Union’s forbearance program, visit their resource page or call (855) 855-8805.

Navy Federal Credit Union – New York City, NY

With more than 12 million members, Navy Federal Credit Union is a highly recommended option for NY’s service members and affiliates looking for a payday loan alternative, offering rock bottom loan amounts, generous APRs, and flexible terms.

For starters, Navy Federal Credit Union’s payday alternative loans offer APRs ranging from 7.49% to 18%, depending on your credit score. In addition, Loan amounts for Navy Federal Credit Union range from $250 to $50,000, a sweet spot compared to most online lending platforms and banks, which require a $1,000 minimum. Repayment terms are also six to 60 months.

As for qualifications, Navy Federal Credit Union’s payday alternative loans do not require a minimum credit score. In that sense, they qualify similarly to payday lenders. However, the Navy League or Armed Forces Retirement Home program restricts membership to former or current military members and their immediate relatives.

We recommend Navy Federal Credit Union for Navy League or Armed Forces Retirement Home program members looking for excellent APRs and terms on payday alternative loans.


  • Excellent APRs (7.49% to 18%)
  • No origination or early termination fees
  • No minimum credit score required
  • Loan amounts of $250 to $50,000
  • Same day guaranteed approval


  • $29 late payment fee
  • Membership is limited to former or current military members

The Impact of Covid-19:

Navy Federal Credit Union does have an extensive COVID-19 page listing all resources available to members. To discuss forbearance and hardship options, call them at (888) 842-6328.

Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union – Kingston, NY

With more than 80,000 members, Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union is an excellent choice for New Yorkers who want fast guaranteed approvals (in as little as five minutes) with one of the speediest online sign ups for payday loan alternatives we’ve seen.

Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union is strong practically everywhere, with debt consolidation loan APRs as low as 8.49% on loans from $500 to $25,000.

For perspective, a New Yorker paying an 8.49% APR on a $10,000 debt consolidation loan will pay roughly $1,362 in interest over a 36-month term. In contrast, a 16.65% APR credit card with the same balance on a 44-month repayment term and up to 5% in transfer fees will see total interest accrued of $3,428.30 — almost triple!

Its website is arguably Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union’s biggest draw over fellow Navy Federal Credit Union and First Tech Federal Credit Union. Its website is head over heels easier to use than these two, with easy-to-find monthly payment calculators and a simplified application interface. Older people who want a straightforward application process would be pleased to see it.


  • Easy-to-use website
  • Same day guaranteed approval
  • Same-day funding for most loans
  • .25% rate reduction with autopay
  • COVID and non-COVID financial hardship counseling available


  • Little offline presence (only nine branches in New York)

The Impact of Covid-19:

Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union offers financial hardship services via an online request form that connects you with a branch representative to discuss your options.

What Are All Of The Payday Loan Alternatives in New York?

Fortunately, NY borrowers have access to multiple lending sources which offer better rates, terms, and fee structures than payday loans New York.

Here are our top picks for payday loan alternatives in NY:

Personal Installment Loans for Bad Credit. NY borrowers with bad credit are still eligible for legitimate personal loans that offer up to $250,000 with APRs ranging from 15% to 35.99%. They largely come from credit unions and online lending platforms like Upstart that offer excellent all-around terms. With payday loans New York hitting in excess of 400% APR and auto title loans following closely behind at 300%+ APRs, personal installment loans for bad credit can be a reality for millions of bad credit New Yorkers like you may be.

Payday Alternative Loans (PALs). Offered by alternative payday lenders, payday alternative loans are small loans with lower interest rates and longer repayment terms than traditional payday loans New York. It’s an excellent alternative for bad credit NY borrowers looking for flexible terms who want to borrow up to $10,000, with APRs between 35.99% to 400%. Consider PALs as a nice gap between personal and payday loans.

Like payday loans New York, borrowers are qualified based on proof of income, not credit score.

One example of a PAL is NetCredit (reviewed above), which offers loan amounts up to $10,000 with 6 to 60-month repayment terms.

Loan Apps. Over the past decade, many NY borrowers have turned to bad credit personal loan apps to help pay unexpected bills, consolidate debt, and fund projects. Almost all loan apps offer unsecured installment loans with fixed monthly payments, no credit checks, and lower APRs than payday loans New York.

As of this writing, Earnin, Dave, Brigit, Empower, and Chime are the most popular loan apps.

One catch with loan apps is their often-times excessive fees and effect on behavior. For example, payday advance apps like Dave increase the chances of overdrafts and promote chronic borrowing. Loan app fees also operate differently than traditional lenders, charging for everything from instant receipt of funds to paying $1 monthly membership fees (Dave) in exchange for unlimited free payday advances up to $500 each.

Continue reading our guide to learn our best NY loan app recommendations.

Buy Now Pay Later. Like loan apps, Buy Now Pay Later services allow users to apply for small installment loans at the point of purchase with or without a down payment on the total purchase amount. According to PYMNTS Holiday Shopping Outlook (2021) report, a payment data organization, 61% of buyers used this payment method for holiday shopping between 2020 and 2021.

Some of the more popular Buy Now Pay Later companies include Affirm and Klarna.

Unlike payday loans New York, Buy Now Pay Later charges no to little interest. However, like loan apps, they may force NY borrowers into chronic overuse and missed payments, impacting their credit scores. On top of that, Buy Now Pay Later services do not offer cash-back rewards, a perk long known as traditional credit cards.

Continue reading our guide to learn our best recommendations for Buy Now Pay Later services in NY.

Credit Unions. Easily our preferred lender for payday loan alternatives, our recommended credit unions accept good and bad credit NY borrowers, offering better rates and lower fees than many banks. In addition, many credit unions back NCUA-insured accounts up to $250,000 and provide excellent financing counseling and resources.

As for terms, credit unions generally offer personal loans for bad credit borrowers up to $100,000 with APRs capped at 18%. They can also offer smaller payday alternative loans up to $1,000 at APRs up to 28%. Both types of loans enjoy lower fees and longer repayment terms than payday loans New York. APRs are usually capped at 18%, but it is common for them to be higher. Eligibility is also laxer, with credit unions requiring no more than a member ID, proof of employment/income, and proof of residency. Consider it an excellent way to get out of the payday loan cycle with a more attractive alternative.

Our preferred NY credit unions for bad credit NY borrowers are First Tech Federal Credit Union, Navy Federal Credit Union, and Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union.

Continue reading our guide to learn our best NY credit union recommendations.

Payday Loans, Auto Title Loans and Pawnshop Loans. With APRs exceeding 400%+ and the risk of entering a cavernous debt cycle, these loan types are highly not recommended. Not to mention, they are illegal in New York. Unfortunately, despite payday loans being illegal in NY, NY’ers may be offered illegal payday loans New York from time to time. Luckily, there are ways to report these unscrupulous lenders.

To learn how to report these lenders, refer to ‘Why Aren’t Payday Loans Legal in New York?’ below.

Best Loan Apps in New York of November 2022

The best loan apps in New York work as cash advance apps. Like payday loans New York, loan apps address small emergency expenses and gaps between paychecks.

Here are our picks for the best loan apps in NY.

To see a complete list of our recommended loan apps, please visit our Marketplace.

Best Alternative Payday Loans in New York of November 2022

The best alternative payday loans New York are a “bridge” between traditional personal loans and payday loans, topping out at 35.99% with loan amounts up to $50,000. Expect your APR to come close to the 35.99% mark if you have really bad credit.

Here are our picks for the best alternative payday loan providers in NY.

  • LendUp
  • Lending Tree
  • CashUSA

To see a complete list of our recommended alternative payday loans, please visit our Marketplace.

Best “Buy Now, Pay Later” Lenders in New York of November 2022

“Buy Now, Pay Later” lenders allow consumers to make short-term finance purchases in exchange for repaying balances in as little as two installments without interest. They are commonly used to pay for clothing, electronics, furniture, and other goods, often impulse buys with instant guaranteed approvals upon checkout.

Here are our picks for the best Buy Now, Pay Later services in New York:

  • Klarna
  • Affirm
  • Afterpay
  • Paypal Credit

To see a complete list of our recommended Buy Now, Pay Later services, please visit our Marketplace.

Best Credit Unions in New York of November 2022

Our recommended credit unions in New York offer personal loans for bad credit capped at 18%. They also offer payday loan alternatives capped at 28%, thanks to your income and debt-to-income ratio looking more heavily upon than your credit score.

Here are our picks for the best credit unions in NY:

  • GHS Federal Credit Union
  • First Tech Federal Credit Union
  • Navy Federal Credit Union
  • Mid-Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union
  • Alliant Credit Union

To see a complete list of our recommended credit unions in New York, please visit our Marketplace.

What Are New York’s Payday Loan Laws?

In short, bad credit payday loans are illegal in New York. However, New York State regulators have acknowledged their sky-high annual percentage rates, long-term cycle of debt traps, and the need to take out repeated loans to make ends meet.

In some cases, unethical payday loan lenders have worked with unsuspecting borrowers. However, if you receive or suspect you are receiving an illegal payday loan, New York has several city, state, and federal regulators ready to assist. They include the NYC Department of Consumer Affairs, the NYS Department of Financial Services, and the NYS Attorney’s General’s Office.

The best way to file a complaint with the state is by calling 311.

Why Aren’t Payday Loans Legal in New York?

Payday loans in New York are illegal thanks to their predatory practices, even with no credit checks. They have been known to trap bad credit borrowers in debt, assess excessive transaction fees, and charge annual percentage rates of 400% or higher. Additionally, per NY Penal Code 190.40, all short-term loans have a capped 25% interest, which puts payday lenders out of business.

If you suspect you are being offered a payday loan, feel free to file a complaint with the Department of Financial Services at (800) 342-3736, file a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau complaint, or file an FTC complaint at and, respectively.

Fortunately, bad credit New Yorkers can get instant approval on quick funds in many ways, starting with the best payday loan alternatives outlined above. NY’ers can choose from traditional lenders (banks and credit unions) or online services like BadCreditLoans connecting borrowers to an extensive network of lenders.

What Else Should I Know About Payday Loans New York?

According to a study by Pew Charitable Trusts, roughly $9 billion are spent on payday loan fees, annually, making them a truly dangerous proposition. No wonder there is  a strong demand for payday loan alternatives with lower fees and more flexible terms.

With more than 20,000 New Yorkers filing for bankruptcy (2021) and the average household debt at $50,054, the team at ElitePersonalFinance is keen on offering the best payday loan alternatives to better pay for unexpected expenses, such as medical bills.

How Do I Find The Best Payday Loan Alternative in New York?

We recommend the following option based on these scenarios to find the best payday loan alternatives in New York.

Quick Cash. Are you looking for small bad credit loans up to $500? We highly recommend loan apps like Dave, Chime, Earnin, and Brigit. These work as cash advance apps with funds disbursed and repaid in as little as one pay period. Kudos to their fixed fee structures, no credit checks, and lower APRs than payday loans New York.

On The Fly Purchases. Want to pay for that small to large purchase without taking out a cash advance? If your online retailer partners with a BNPL provider like Klarna and Affirm, go for it. These services generally offer Pay in 1 or Pay in 4-style payment plans with no credit checks and no interest fees. Remember, Buy Now, Pay Later apps are used at the point of purchase and do not award funds directly to your account as loan apps do.

Larger Loan Amounts with OK to So-So Credit. Looking for a higher loan amount than what loan apps can offer, sometimes with no credit check? Personal installment loans for bad credit are available to NY borrowers with subprime credit scores, good for loan amounts up to $250,000 with 15% to 35.99% APRs.

Larger Loan Amounts with Bad Credit. Not approved by any of the personal installment loans for bad credit lenders in NY. We then recommend alternative payday loans New York from a credit union that offers slightly high APRs (think GHS Federal Credit Union’s 28%). However, it provides bad credit loans borrowers with much more flexibility than traditional payday loans, with fewer fees, lower APRs, and longer repayment terms.

How Do I Qualify For Payday Alternative Loans?

Qualification criteria for payday alternative loans depend on the type of loan you are looking at.

Loan Apps. Loan apps like Earnin and Brigit’s main qualification criteria is a recurring income, not a credit score. For example, Brigit users in NY can take out cash advances between $50 and $250 if they can prove they have three consecutive deposits from the same employer. In turn, Earnin users need to show proof of deposit income.

Buy Now, Pay Later. Arguably the easiest qualification criteria, all you need to do is commit to weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly installments with no interest fees and no credit checks. However, paying off your balance after the period ends will result in paying interest.

Personal Installment Loans. Personal installment loans generally require higher credit scores and recurring income.

Payday Alternative Loans. A popular offering of some credit unions like GHS Federal Credit Union, PALs generally qualify customers who are members of the credit union in good standing with a regular income, where proof of income is required. As a result, income takes precedence over credit scores, helping bad credit borrowers.

Does The Government or Other Organizations Helo With Financing Those Looking For Payday Loan Alternatives in New York?

Fortunately, New Yorkers have access to financial assistance programs designed to address short-term financial hardships commonly experienced by borrowers seeking payday loans New York.

One program that comes to mind is the US Department of Health and Human Services Federal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, which offers temporary cash to families meeting minimum eligibility requirements. Conditions state that you must be a head of household with at least one child under age 18 who is unemployed.

Another organization New Yorkers can turn to is their local Department of Social Services or call New York’s Temporary Assistance hotline at (800) 342-3009.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I get a payday loan with a 500 credit score?

In New York, payday loans are illegal, so you will not be able to get one, regardless of your credit score. However, you are eligible for payday alternative loans with a 500 credit score. One way is through secured loans, where collateral is used to secure a loan balance.

Remember, some loan apps and Buy Now, Pay Later services exist for low credit score borrowers. For example, Earning users must have recurring income to be eligible for its payday advance option, which has nothing to do with credit scores.

What do I do if I am the victim of an illegal payday loan?

Luckily, New York has resources to turn to if you fall into an illegal payday advance trap. If you suspect your loan is illegal, call (855) 411-2372 to file a complaint with the CFPB. You may also learn more at

You may also call the Department of Financial Services at (800) 342-3736 and file a complaint with the FTC by calling (877) 382-4357 or visiting

What are annual percentage rates (APRs), and how do they work?

Annual percentage rates refer to yearly interest incurred by a loan that is charged to borrowers. Lenders tally interest rates minus applicable discounts and other fees to calculate APRs.

Here is the equation used to calculate APR:

((Interest + Fees / Principal or Loan amount) / Number of days in loan term)) x 365 x 100

Keep in mind APRs differ from interest rates in that interest rates are simply what’s paid to lenders to borrow money, expressed as a percentage., Interest rates are primarily affected by market conditions, the cost to borrow by banks, and other economic factors.

How do I increase my credit score?

Before taking out a payday loan alternative or cash advance alternative loan, we highly recommend boosting your credit score. There are many short-term quick fixes to using your credit score by 50 points or more, such as paying off balances, maintaining a low credit utilization ratio of 30% or less, asking for higher credit limits, and checking each of your three credit reports (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) for any errors.

Remember, lenders use your credit score, income, debt-to-income ratio, and collateral value (for secured loans only) to determine your creditworthiness.

For more information on how to increase your credit score, visit 30 Best Ways to Raise Your Credit Score Fast and Free

What are the average credit score and average personal loan debt in New York?

According to Experian’s 2020 Consumer Credit Review, 722 is the average FICO score, and $14,112 is the average personal loan balance in New York (2021).

The states with the highest credit scores are Vermont, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Washington, North Dakota, South Dakota, Massachusetts, Nebraska, and Oregon. Conversely, the states with the lowest credit scores are Louisiana, Alabama, Oklahoma, Texas, Georgia, Arkansas, South Carolina, New Mexico, and West Virginia.

Are payday loans in New York with guaranteed approval?

No, not all payday loan alternatives in New York offer guaranteed approval. Although many offer approved payday loan requests with no credit check,  you can still be denied based on having no credit scoring history and non-qualifying income and borrowing history.

How Do We Pick These Lenders?

Our top recommendations for best payday loan alternatives in New York are made after hours of research, putting a fine tooth comb to 50+ banks, credit unions, and online lending platforms. Each was carefully assessed to determine the strength of APRs, fee structure, loan amounts, and perks like unemployment protection and strong forbearance/debt relief assistance. All of them are significantly better than some predatory payday advance and cash advance loans.

The team at ElitePersonal Finance will always provide unbiased reviews on the lending products and services we love. We’d love to hear from you if you have any feedback or suggestions. Send us with your feedback, and we’ll reply as soon as possible.


All in all, New York has no shortage of alternative payday loan lenders. Whether it’s an online lending platform connecting you to a network of lenders, banks, or credit unions, our recommended payday loan alternatives will surely put you on the fast track to getting the funding you need with attractive terms.

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