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Military Loans

Updated December 05, 2019

2020 Military Loan Rankings

Military loans are loans targeted at members of the US Armed Forces. Lenders specializing in military loans can be more familiar with the financial demands of preparing for deployment, Permanent Change of Station moves around the world, or other situations unique to military families. In many cases, these lenders have adapted their application process to the military, e.g. using military pay grades for pre-approval or using a Leave and Earnings Statement to demonstrate income.

Lenders making military loans range from regulated, established banks to unregulated, off-shore entities. This means prices and lending practices vary widely from great to predatory. The Military Lending Act prohibits typical payday loans to members of the military but not all military loans are covered by the Act so as with any financial product do your own due diligence before taking a loan. Do not immediately trust the lender because they have customized their process to the military. Short-term, emergency loans are best taken only when completely necessary and where a clear path to paying the loan off exists.

The Payday Hound reviews short-term lenders and ranks them according to our Sniff Test (reputation), costs, and licensing. Being included on our list is not an endorsement or certification. The reviews are designed to help borrowers rate and judge the quality of lenders. We include all lenders we review both good and bad.

The lenders listed below include both civilian installment loan lenders and those specializing in military loans. Those who specialize in military installment loans are noted in the description. To see lenders who provide military loans in your state select your state below.

Filter by state:
Company Name Description Rating
Check Into Cash

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Check Into Cash for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 - $25,000
  • APR: 195% - 521%
  • State Licensed Lender
OppLoans

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit OppLoans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $500 - $4,000
  • APR: 99% - 199%
  • State Licensed Lender
Ace Cash Express

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Ace Cash Express for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 - $2,000
  • APR: 175% - 1,029%
  • State Licensed Lender
CashNetUSA

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit CashNetUSA for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 - $2,000
  • APR: 299% - 456%
  • State Licensed Lender
LendUp

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit LendUp for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 - $500
  • APR: 155% - 164%
  • State Licensed Lender
Cash Central

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Cash Central for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 - $5,000
  • APR: 180% - 740%
  • State Licensed Lender
Cash 1

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Cash 1 for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 - $50,000
  • APR: 168% - 390%
  • State Licensed Lender
RISE

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit RISE for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $300 - $5,000
  • APR: 60% - 299%
  • State Licensed Lender
Jora

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Jora for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $500 to $2,600
  • APR: 170% to 349%
  • State Licensed Lender
Quik Check

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Quik Check for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 - $500
  • APR: 146% - 548%
  • State Licensed Lender
Check 'n Go

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Check 'n Go for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $250 to $5,000
  • APR: 314% to 662%
  • State Licensed Lender
Speedy Cash

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Speedy Cash for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 to $2,000
  • APR: 178% to 680%
  • State Licensed Lender
Cash Store

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Cash Store for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 - $1000
  • APR: 313% to 780%
  • State Licensed Lender
NFCU

eligible credit type ⓘ

all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $25,000-$50,000
  • APR: 8.19% to 18%
  • Unclear if exporting state laws.
USAA

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit USAA for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
[close]
all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $2,500 to $50,000
  • APR: 8.99% to 17.65%
  • Federally Chartered Bank
Plain Green Loans

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Plain Green Loans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
[close]
all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $1,000
  • APR: 300%
  • Tribe Based Lender
Blue Trust Loans

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Blue Trust Loans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
[close]
all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 to $2,500
  • APR: 782%
  • Tribe Based Lender
Cash Advance Now

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Cash Advance Now for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
[close]
all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $300 to $1,500
  • APR: 725%
  • Tribe Based Lender
Mobiloans

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit Mobiloans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
[close]
all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $10 to $2,500
  • APR: 206.14% to 442.31%
  • Tribe Based Lender
MaxLend

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit MaxLend for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
[close]
all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $100 to $2,500
  • APR: 782%
  • Tribe Based Lender
American Web Loan

eligible credit type ⓘ

Visit American Web Loan for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
[close]
all
fair
good
great
  • Loans: $300 to $2,500
  • APR: None Listed
  • Tribe Based Lender

* Rates and fees vary by state. Not all lenders operate in all states. Check each lender's website for up-to-date information.

What Are Military Loans

Military loans generally refers to a short-term loan targeted at members of the military. Typically these loans are available to individuals with poor credit, are generally unsecured, and tied to your pay date. They are very easy to qualify for and, as they focus on military members, being overseas is usually not a problem. The trade-off is the cost of these installment loans can be very high and are best used to meet unavoidable emergency expenses like utility bills or medical bills.

Military loans are a type of more general loan called installment loans. Fixed-rate mortgages, auto loans, and student loans are other examples of installment loans. These loans are paid back over multiple periods with a set payment amount. The payment amount includes interest and principal meaning by the last payment the entire loan is paid off. This differs from revolving loans like credit cards where a set payment is not calculated and payments only cover interest and a portion of principal. The payment amount for installment loans is calculated based on the interest rate, payment periods, and loan amount.

These loans are also referred to as military installment loans, no credit check military loans, and military lenders.

How Are Military Loans Different

The difference between military loans and other installment loans is that they are generally low dollar amounts and for shorter terms. They also typically have high-interest rates and fees. These loans can be very expensive and should be used with caution and only when truly necessary. See Borrow Money Options for other ideas if you need additional money.

Military loans also stand out from other short term borrowing options such as payday loans by targeting active-duty military members. The lenders making these loans understand that you are paid by the US Government so are more willing to make loans based on your future income than they would for civilians. In addition, many lenders have developed processes to work with the military payment infrastructure. For example, some lenders pre-approve borrowers based on rank. This is not so difficult to do as based your rank lenders can quickly estimate your base pay. Other lenders will make underwriting decisions based on an upload of your Leave and Earning Statement. This makes it much easier than sorting out tax returns and other items other traditional lenders may require. Another feature we've seen is that lenders require being paid via a discretionary allotment. In all cases lenders making military loans try to make the application process as easy as possible for you but also make the repayment process as reliable as possible for them.

Please be careful when working with any lender. Although they may be familiar with a military member's needs and work through official processes like allotment this does not necessarily make them trustworthy. For example, lenders using the allotment process are not screened or monitored by the military. Predatory lenders to the military can and do exist.

Military Lending Act (MLA)

In the Department of Defense (DOD) August 2006 report , the DOD found that, "predatory lending undermines military readiness, harms the morale of troops and their families, and adds to the cost of fielding an all-volunteer fighting force." In response to the report, an amendment was added to the John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007. The bill was enacted in October 2006 and the amendment became known as the Military Lending Act. In 2013, Congress gave the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Consumer Finance Protection Board (CFPB), the FDIC, the OCC, and the FTC the authority to enforce it. State regulators also supervise state-chartered institutions for MLA requirements pursuant to authority granted by state law.

In 2013 the CFPB released Guidelines for Protecting Servicemembers in the Payday Lending Market. In it the CFSB states it will scrutinizing short-term, small-dollar lenders to make sure that they follow MLA requirements. In July 2015, DoD published revisions to the MLA implementing additional regulation as well as modifying existing regulations. Previously, the MLA regulation only applied to certain types of credit, namely: narrowly defined payday loans, motor vehicle title loans, and tax refund anticipation loans with particular terms. The current rule defines “consumer credit” subject to the MLA much more broadly.

As of October 3, 2017, most types of consumer loans offered to active-duty service members and their dependents need to comply with the Military Lending Act (MLA). These products include, but are not limited to:

  • Payday loans
  • Deposit advance products
  • Vehicle title loans
  • Overdraft lines of credit (excluding traditional overdraft services)
  • Installment loans
  • Credit cards

The MLA does not cover loans that are secured by the property being purchased. These loans include:

  • Residential mortgages, mortgage refinances, home equity loans, home equity lines of credit, or reverse mortgages
  • Motor vehicle loans secured by the motor vehicle you are buying
  • Personal property loans secured by the property you are buying, like a vehicle or home appliance.

The CFPB lists the rights covered by the MLA as,

  • A 36% interest cap

    Interest is capped at 36% Military Annual Percentage Rate (MAPR). MAPR includes the following costs in calculating your interest rate:

    • Finance charges
    • Credit insurance premiums or fees
    • Add-on products sold in connection with the credit
    • Other fees like application or participation fees (see execptions here

  • No mandatory waivers of consumer protection laws

    A creditor can’t require you to submit to mandatory arbitration or give up certain rights you have under State or Federal laws like the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act.

  • No mandatory allotments

    A creditor can’t require you to create a voluntary military allotment in order to get the loan. An allotment is an automatic amount of money taken from your paycheck to pay back your loan.

  • No prepayment penalty.

    A creditor can’t charge a penalty if you pay back the loan early either partially or in-full.

Although the MLA provides military members additional protections the ultimate protection is still be informed and aware. Read over the terms carefully and make sure you understand them especially payment terms. Finally, remember it is generally best not to take a loan if you don't absolutely need one. These loans can be very expensive.

Find Loan Lenders by State

Military loans are state regulated so not all lenders make loans in all states. Select your state below to find lenders available in your state.