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How to Get a Loan?

Many people run into trouble when it comes to acquiring a loan, simply because they are unfamiliar with how to get a loan. What steps are involved? What do you need? How can you maximize your chances of getting the loan? These and many other questions can be intimidating, especially if you’ve never taken out a loan before.

Not knowing what to expect creates anxiety and stress and may even negatively influence your financial decisions. The good news is this problem can be remedied with simple information on how to get a loan, in just a few simple steps! It doesn’t need to be a complicated process to obtain a loan in the modern era. With different types of loans and lenders available, there are lots of options to suit your unique situation.

There are millions of reasons why you might need a loan at some point in your life. Your financial management and decision-making should not be held back by a lack of information or confusion over the lending process. Let’s level the playing field and give you the information you need to thrive, by covering the basics of how to get a loan!

How to get a loan in Canada

Step #1. Decide What Type of Loan You Want

The first step on your journey to obtaining a loan is to decide on what type or types of loans you want. Depending on your circumstances, assets, and the reason you need the loan/how you intend to use the loan, certain types of loans will become more ideal than others. A few critical points to note:

• Some loans require collateral – assets that must be pledged by the borrower and will be seized by the lender if the borrower fails to repay the loan. These are known as secured loans. Loans that do not require collateral are known as unsecured loans.
• Many loans are restricted in terms of how their funds may be used. Some kinds of loans can only be used for the purchase of a particular asset (such as a car loan), whereas others may have broader restrictions (a business loan can only be used for business expenses). Still, others may have no restrictions on them at all.
• The interest rates for different types of loans will vary considerably, as will the qualification requirements.
• Different sorts of loans will often be designed for different terms (the length of time for repayment), with shorter loan terms being more ideal for certain kinds of uses and vice versa.
• Most lenders do not offer all types of loans. That’s why it’s important first to decide what kinds of loans you want to pursue, before proceeding with the rest of the process.

Some examples of the most common types of loans available to Canadians today include:

Auto loans are linked to the purchase of a specific car, with repayment over a few years in most cases. These are usually secured loans, with the vehicle itself being the collateral (the lender is effectively an owner until the loan is repaid).

Home mortgages enable the purchase of a home, with repayment terms as short as a few years to a few decades. They are secured by the home that is being purchased, so no additional collateral is usually required.

Student loans help students pay for their higher education expenses. They may or may not require collateral (though usually don’t), and repayment terms and interest rates tend to vary considerably.

Business loans, providing mainly unrestricted funds to business owners. These may be secured or unsecured, with various terms and interest rates depending on the specifics of any given loan.

Personal loans are like business loans but for individuals.

Short term loans provide unrestricted funds for individuals, like with a personal loan, but usually over a shorter period of time. These loans may have terms of a few weeks to 62 days and are also known as payday loans. These are usually among the easiest type of loan to qualify for and obtain for the average Canadian today.

Step #2. Decide How Much You Can Afford

Too often, people ask, “How much money can I borrow?” without asking the crucial parallel question, “How much can I afford to borrow?” Not all loans provide funds aimed at helping you to improve your financial situation or give you the discretion on how the funds are used.

Mortgages and car loans, for instance, are solely designed to purchase their respective assets. They add a monthly expense that you have to factor into your budget. Understanding the repayment schedule*, interest rate, and how those payments will impact your ordinary income and expenses in a given week, month, or year is vital.

For loans with relatively short terms, figuring out, “How much can I afford?” is usually a bit easier than with longer-term loans. While there are no guarantees in life, knowing how you are going to repay an instant loan in two months is usually more of a certainty than a loan with 3, 5, or 10 years of payments due.

It’s also important to note that the decision on, “How much can I borrow?” won’t be entirely up to you. While almost all lenders will have you specify your requested loan amount, that does not mean you will always be approved for the full amount. They will also look at your income and financials, then try to choose a loan amount as close to your requested total as possible, without increasing the risk that you may be taking out too much and be unable to repay it on time or in full.

Step #3. Check Your Credit Score

Your credit score will often come into play as part of the eligibility requirements or approval criteria for many types of loans. In other cases, your credit score may be used to help determine the interest rate you will pay or whether collateral is required for a specific loan.

Generally speaking, the higher your credit score, the better your approval odds for almost every type of loan. However, it’s worth noting that not all loans have credit score requirements associated with them. That still doesn’t mean you shouldn’t always strive to maintain a good credit score, though.

There are several ways to check credit scores in Canada. Some banks and financial institutions offer a free credit score check as part of their services for account holders. There are third-party companies that provide routine credit score monitoring, either free or for a small fee.

One of the easiest and cheapest ways of how to check your credit score for free is by following the instructions on the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada website. In general, it may be slower than services that offer instant free online credit checks, but the tradeoff is it doesn’t cost you anything, either.

Step #4. Choose a Lender

Choosing a lender is the next important step in the process of how to get a loan. There’s no single right way of selecting a lender, of course. It’s often useful to narrow down your search to a few top candidates before proceeding.

Some of the factors you should consider, guide your decision on how to choose a lender, include:

• Does the lender offer the types of loans that I am interested in?
• Is the lender licensed and certified to lend where I live?
• What’s the reputation of the lender? Are there a lot of issues in reviews or complaints about their service? Or do people generally have good experiences with them?
• How’s the customer service offered by the lender? Many people forget to look into that when choosing a lender, but the quality and availability of customer service can be extremely important if you run into a problem with your loan or lending experience.
• What are the other details associated with the lender – loan availability, operating hours, history with security and data breaches, where they are located, whether they have an office near you?

You also will want to consider the details uncovered from the next two steps of the lending process. They are at least equally important with the answers to the questions/considerations posed above when it comes to choosing a lender that is a good fit for your needs.

Step #5. Compare Interest Rates

The biggest expense associated with most kinds of loans is the finance charge or interest rate. Therefore, you have to compare interest rates between lenders for the types of loans you are interested in, to figure out what that loan may cost you.

Some lenders have flat rates that apply to all customers if they are approved for a given type of loan. Others have a range of rates, with better rates going to customers with higher credit scores, more assets, or otherwise who present less risk for the lender.

To compare loans online or compare loan providers, you’ll need to understand the type of interest rate being charged and what that equates to in terms of actual cost out of pocket for your loan. Some interest rates are time-based – the common APR, or annual percentage rate, is based on a calendar year. Other interest rates may be a single, one-off amount charged at the time of repayment.

Likewise, before you compare interest rates, understanding if the rate is fixed or variable is fairly important. Fixed rates remain the same for the life of the loan, meaning no surprises in the amount you will have to repay each week, month or year (whatever the repayment schedule* may be).

Variable rates will often start fixed for a period of time, then adjust based on market conditions after a certain amount of time has passed. This can be risky and result in some savings, or massive increases in interest expense after some time.

The best way to ensure a true apples-to-apples comparison of interest rates is to use a loan calculator.

Step #6. Meet the Requirements

There’s one last step before you apply at a given lender and that is ensuring that you meet the requirements to be eligible for the loan you want to take. Every lender has a different set of qualification requirements from one another, based on their own risk tolerance and other factors.

A single lender can have very different requirements for each type of loan they offer, too. These will usually be spelled out in the literature available from the lender, either in print form or, more commonly, online.

It’s imperative that you meet the requirements and review them in advance, or you are guaranteeing that your loan application will be rejected. Depending on the type of loan, amount, and lender, you may need to meet the requirements on a few types of criteria. This includes residency, income, collateral assets, time in your present job, a minimum credit score, age, credit history-related requirements (such as no prior bankruptcies), co-signer requirements, and more.

Step #7. Apply for a Loan!

Once you’re sure you meet the requirements, it’s time to go ahead and apply for a loan at your chosen lender! The exact process to apply for a loan will vary from lender to lender and type of loan to type of loan. What is needed to complete the application will also vary.

If you’re choosing a lender with a local office, you’ll need to either set up an appointment or go and visit that office to apply. Some lenders allow for online application. In some cases, you’ll need to gather various documents to provide as part of the application.

It’s always useful to read the instructions thoroughly and check in advance if you can find out from the lender’s website or documentation what you need to apply for a loan there.

Whatever the case may be, follow the instructions provided by the lender to submit an application for a loan. You may then need to wait for an approval decision – a period of time that can range from minutes to days or even weeks, depending on the specifics. The period of time involved is usually longer if you need to have collateral valued and pledged for a secured loan.

Following approval, the next steps will also vary by lender, though typically involve a loan agreement to sign formally, some setup and linkage to your correspondent bank accounts, and then a release of funds.

Congratulations, you’ve got your loan!

Get a Loan!

One of the best ways to get a loan online today – especially if you are trying to get a loan with bad credit – is to utilize a direct lender like iCASH. We are a leading Canadian lender, exclusively offering emergency loans online.

We make it incredibly easy to get a loan today, with high approval odds, a simple online application process, fast funding, and so much more. In keeping with the theme of our guide to how to get a loan in Canada, let’s walk over our loan application process. It’s quite simple and fast!

1. Fill out the application with the requested information and select your desired loan amount and repayment options*. For most customers, it takes only about 10 minutes. The online loan application can be accessed through the iCASH website or iCASH app. All you need is a computer, smartphone, or tablet, and a working internet connection. There’s no need to make an appointment, travel to a store or branch office, or bring any kind of documents to scan, fax, or mail. Everything is digital!.
2. Get an instant decision within minutes. One of the key benefits of choosing our service is that there’s no stressful waiting for approval. Traditional lenders can take hours, days, or weeks to give you an answer. Approval happens in about a minute, through an automated system that is available 24/7/365. No waiting!
3. Once your loan is approved, you’ll receive a digital loan agreement to review. You also need to sign it, but that just takes a few clicks. Once it’s digitally signed, it is automatically returned to us, triggering your funds’ release.
4. Get your money via e-Transfer. Funds are released for your loan automatically, and provided as cash, via your chosen funding method. For most customers, funds are available the same day – and can even be available in just minutes.

That’s it! It’s so quick and easy that most customers complete the entire lending process in 30 to 60 minutes.

Since there are no collateral or minimum credit score requirements to get a loan, approval rates are as high as 90%! You can borrow up to $1,500 in cash and repay your loan in 1 or multiple installments*.

These are just some of the reasons why more and more Canadians answer the question, “Where can I get a loan?” with one simple word: iCASH!

You can get a loan in any of these provinces of Canada

in Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Ontario, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island.

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How Get a Loan Online?


Apply Online

Just use the simple form on our website – select the amount of cash that you want to borrow, your repayment plan*, provide some information and you’re on your way.


Instant Decision

Complete your loan application. You’ll receive an instant approval, so you can put your finances back on track. Fast, easy and reliable loans from a trusted licensed direct lender.


Get Fund

Your funds will be sent via e-transfer in 5 minutes or less. Our transfers mean your money is available anytime you need it. Safe, urgent loans online with same day funding.

Maximum repayment period 62 days. APR is 109.50%. For a $300 loan of 14 days, the total payback amount is $345. Interest fees: Alberta $15 per 100, British Columbia $15 per 100, Manitoba $17 per 100, New Brunswick $15 per 100, Nova Scotia $19 per 100, Ontario $15 per 100, PEI $15 per 100. 372 Bertha Street, Hawkesbury, Ontario, K6A 2A8. iCASH only offers online services. Please note that we cannot accept customers or conduct any transactions from this location.

How to Get a Loan FAQs

How to apply for a loan?

To apply for a loan at iCASH, you need to follow these steps:

    1. Log on to the our website or use the iCASH app on iOS and Android devices.
    2. Fill out the loan application. It takes only minutes to finish and does not require you to fax, mail, or scan any documents. Just review the eligibility requirements, follow the instructions, and provide the requested information in the digital application form.
    3. Choose your desired loan amount, repayment options*, and so on. Then sit back, relax, and let the automated approval process take over.

What do I need to get a loan?

The minimum requirements to be eligible for a loan are:

• Be at least 19 years old at the time of your application.
Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Ontario, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, or Prince Edward Island.
• Have been receiving the same source or mix of income for at least the past 3 months.
• Have a net income of at least $800/month. This can include wages as well as social assistance programs from the provincial or federal level, private pensions, retirement plans, and other sources.
• Have a Canadian bank account that has been open for at least 3 months and has access to online banking features.
• Have a valid mobile phone number, email address, and home address.

What is the best place to get a loan?

For most people, the best place to get a loan is from an online lender like iCASH. Unlike banks, which reject a high number of applicants, online lenders approve the majority of their loan applicants.

They don’t rely as heavily on credit scores to determine risk and eligibility, nor do they require collateral. In essence, it’s far easier to get a loan from an online lender than it is from a bank or brick-and-mortar loan store.

But those aren’t the only benefits! Borrowing online means you apply faster, get approved faster, and get funded more quickly. It’s more convenient and available 24/7/365. Technology, automation, and a focus on service mean there’s no faster way to get a loan in Canada today!

How to get a quick $500 loan on the weekend?

To get a quick $500 loan on the weekend, you can visit iCASH, the leading online lender in Canada. Loans of up to $1,500 are available every day of the week, every hour of the day – including weekends.

There’s no need to conform to bankers’ hours or only seek a loan when it’s convenient for someone else. Apply, get approved, and get your cash fast – even on the weekend – with an unsecured personal loan.
Borrow and Save!
Get up to 20% in Cashback!*

iCASH offers a unique Cashback program to reward its customers in Canada. You can get back up to 20% of the cost of borrowing paid once your loan is repaid and receive your Cashback direct into your bank account the same day. Real saving and real Money!*

iCASH logo Traditional Payday Lenders Lenders with brokerage fee
Flexible repayment plans*      
Offers cashback program for more savings*      
Free membership benefits      
No hidden charges   
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