9 Types of Emergency Loans You Didn’t Know You Could Get

If you're in need of emergency cash, find out where and how to get the money you need.

Although financial experts agree you should have three to six months’ worth of expenses saved in an emergency fund, that’s not always realistic. The good news is that if you need a loan disbursement soon, you have the following personal loan options.

1. Car Title Loans

If you don’t have great credit but you have a clean car title, you might be able to get an emergency title loan. Car title loans use your vehicle as collateral, which means if you default on the loan, the lender can take possession of your automobile.

Title loan amounts average between $100 and $5,500 but can go as high as $10,000, according to the Federal Trade Commission. They come with high APRs, and you typically have to repay them within a month.

See: Every Personal Loan Option for Your Credit Score

2. Emergency Loans for Federal Employees

Federal government employees qualify for interest-free emergency loans of up to $1,200 through the Federal Employee Education and Assistance Fund if they’ve experienced an eligible hardship. You can use the funds only for housing and utility costs, funeral expenses or emergency travel — and you must pay back the loan in 10 months.

3. Emergency Military Loans

If you’re active-duty or retired military personnel, you can apply for an emergency military loan and use the money pay for everything from natural disaster damages to funeral expenses. Many lenders allow you to apply online or over the phone, and typical loans range between $500 and $10,000.

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Related: 10 Best Military Banks and Credit Unions of 2017

4. Pawn Loans

To secure a pawn loan you have to take an item of value to a pawn shop dealer. He will determine its worth, offer you a loan and use the item as collateral. Most pawn shops give you 30 days to repay the loan in full and get your item back.

If you don’t pay off the loan, the dealer can sell the item and recoup his money. Some states allow for an extension, so if you need more time, ask the dealer if it’s a possibility.

5. Life Insurance Loans

You can take out a loan on a life insurance policy’s cash surrender value if you’re in need of immediate funds. You can either pay it back with interest or simply not pay it back at all. If you choose the latter, the company will deduct the loan amount from your policy’s proceeds when you die.

Don’t Miss: 7 Emergencies That Could Bankrupt You — and How to Plan Ahead

6. Short-Term Emergency Student Loans

Many colleges and universities offer short-term emergency loans. Most of them are interest-free and you can use them for anything from purchasing books to filling a meal card.

Typically, these loans carry a small administration fee and require repayment within 60 days. You can fill out an application online or at your school’s financial aid office.

If you’re a homeowner, you might be able to borrow money for educational expenses quickly if you can take out a home equity loan, which you can pay back over a fixed term at a fixed interest rate. In addition, the IRS permits you to take penalty-free early distributions from some retirement accounts, like IRAs, for qualified higher education expenses.

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7. Emergency Personal Loans

Companies like Avant and CashNetUSA might be able to get you the money you need within 24 hours. Emergency personal loans work like traditional loans: You get a fixed interest rate with a set payment schedule. Your credit score and ability to repay are considerations for lenders who provide these types of loans.

Find Out: How to Get the Best Personal Loan Rates

8. Payday Loans

Payday loans are generally available for $500 or less, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The lender will issue your funds by check or on a prepaid debit card and you’ll have to pay back the loan and its associated fees with your next paycheck. Payday loans can be easy to get and require only proof of income and a checking account.

9. Credit Card Cash Advance Loans

You can take a cash advance out on your credit card immediately by visiting an ATM or requesting and moving a cash advance into one of your accounts online. You can also request cash advance checks from your credit card issuer. Lenders make their money back by charging fees for the service and adding interest to the money they advance you.

Related: Apply for a Personal Loan Today

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About the Author

Alicia Bodine

Alicia Bodine is a New Jersey-based writer specializing in finance, travel, gardening and education. With more than 13 years of experience, her work has appeared in Chron.com, Livestrong, eHow, USA TODAY, GlobalPost, Education.com and wiseGEEK.

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