Life throws you lemons and puts you in situations you wish you were not in. Sometimes you need a little help financially, but you may feel as though you are unable to get help because you have bad credit. Fortunately, there are ways to get a loan even if you have bed/terrible credit, and I am not talking about PayDay loans, which I would advise you to stay away from no matter the situation. Below are a few tips to help you get a personal loan. Make sure you do your homework when researching, and always compare your options if you have them.

Inquire with an existing bank that knows you: If you do have a relationship with a bank, I would recommend reaching out to them first to see if they can provide you a loan. They may not be able to help, but sometimes smaller banks who know you will be more willing to help.

Use a home equity line of credit: If you have equity in your property, you could get a low-interest, tax-deductible line of credit to spend any way you like. You can get the funds rather quickly, and the rates are very good right now. Just remember your house is collateralized to the loan so if you default on the loan, the bank can repossess your house.

Credit cards: Credit cards do offer cash advances up to a certain amount. You are already “approved” up to a certain amount, and you know what the interest rate is. On the downside, credit card rates are very high. Be very careful if you ultimately choose this route as this may cause more harm than help you.

Friends/Family: Friends or family can be a viable option if you are really in need. However you need to be very careful with this situation as well. Trouble can come up very easily when you mix money with friends and family. You need to have a very serious discussion with them to understand what you are asking for and what they are getting in return.

Get a peer to peer loan: Peer-to-peer lending allows individuals through online services to borrower money from other individuals. Borrowers can obtain financing even with bad credit. There are fees associated with this kind of borrowing and if you do not have great credit, the interest rates can be very high.

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