Best Personal Loans for 2021 in Canada

Get a recap of the best places to get a personal loan in 2021. Compare best personal loan rates, find trusted lenders and choose the optimal personal loan for your individual needs.

Going into 2021, navigating the personal loans industry can be difficult. There are so many lending companies that it’s hard to figure out which ones are better to work with. Especially when you don’t have all day to think about it. This is why we’ve created a go-to resource for finding 2021’s best personal loans in Canada.


After the list was complete, we reached out to each individual company and asked them to share a message with Canadians. It could be a valuable tip or something else that is important for you to know about their company. Scroll down to see the list of companies that are receiving the Best Personal Loans 2021 Award, and what each company had to share in their message to you.

Best Personal Loans 2020

All lenders listed on this page were selected based on the following criteria: 

1. They are licensed to operate in their provinces of service.

2. They have been in business for at least 2 years with a proven track-record and readily available customer support.

3. They exercise responsible lending practices and comply with Canadian underwriting and collection practices.

4. They are committed to safety and security and take all reasonable measures to protect customer data and personal information. Their online application process is conducted in a highly secure environment.

5. They have full, verified profiles on Smarter Loans.

6. They are recipients of the Smarter Loans Quality Badge

Compare Best Personal Loan Rates for 2021


To help you evaluate personal loans that may be right for you, here is a list of the top personal loan lenders. Get a better understanding on personal loan terms, rates, and conditions available on the market in 2021.

Lender Interest Rate Starting at: Loan Amounts Loan Term Available in Lenders Profile
Mogo 5.9% $500 – $35,000 12 – 60 months Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta,
New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia,
Prince Edward Island
Visit profile
ConsumerCapital 19.99% $1,500 – $12,500 12 – 60 Months All of Canada except Quebec,
Northwest Territories, Yukon and Nunavut
Visit profile
Fairstone 19.99% $500 – $30,000 6 – 120 Months All of Canada except Nunavut Visit profile
Money Mart 29.90% $120 – $15,000 12 – 60 Months All of Canada except Quebec, & Nunavut Visit profile
LendingMate 34.9% $2,000 – $10,000 12 – 60 Months Ontario, British Columbia Visit profile
Cash 4 You 46.93% $100 – $15,000 12 – 60 months Ontario Visit profile
SkyCap Financial 12.99% $500 – $10,000 9 – 36 Months All of Canada, except Nova Scotia & Quebec Visit profile
Eastern Loans Varies $500 – $1,000 3 – 6 months All of Canada except for Quebec & Saskatchewan Visit profile
LendDirect 19.99% $100 – $15,000 Open Ended Line of Credit Ontario, British Columbia,
Albert, Saskatchewan
Visit profile
CashMoney 46.93% $500 – $10,000 Open Ended Line of Credit Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia,
Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia
Visit profile
LoanAway 19.90% $1,000 – $5,000 12 – 36 Months Alberta, British Columbia, Ontario,
New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia
Visit profile

Personal Loan Lenders Profiles


The table of companies you saw earlier gives a great overview at a glance, allowing you to easily compare critical factors like interest rates and terms. However different lenders are more suitable for different people depending on their individual circumstances. Having a complete picture will allow you to make a more informed decision about which company to apply with, increase your chances of getting approved, get the money fast, and have a great experience during the whole process.

That’s why we’ve put together a brief overview of each company, highlighting their unique specialties. We also asked each company to submit a quote specifically for this article, so you can not only get our perspective on each company, but also read a concise message directly from them about what makes each company special.


Mogo Loans

Amount you can access: $500 – $35,000
Rate: 5.9% – 39.9%
Terms: 12 – 60 Months

With MogoMoney, get a pre-approval that doesn’t impact your credit score. With its use of technology, you get a transparent loan experience. Mogo customers can open a MogoAccount, which is a personalized online dashboard. Depending on your MogoMoney product, you could see your payment amount, progress, and more.

Bonus: With most of the Mogo loans, if you don’t love your loan experience within the first 100 days, just pay back your principal and they’ll refund those first 100 days of paid interest and fees.

Quote from Mogo:

“Our mission is to make it easy and engaging for Canadians to get financially fit. If you’re looking to borrow for an emergency need, sign up in just 3 minutes and you’ll get a pre-approval without affecting your credit score. You’re also under no obligation to take our loan offer if it isn’t right for you. Our digital product experience is designed to help you borrow responsibly and get out of debt faster. Monitor and protect your finances, control your spending, save and invest wisely, and ultimately get on track towards achieving financial freedom – all from your Mogo account. It’s time for everyone to go after their financial best. It’s time to MoneyUp!”


Mogo Team


ConsumerCapital Loans Canada

Amount you can access: $1,500-$12,500
Rate: 19.99% – 34.99%
Terms: 12 – 60 Months

With ConsumerCapital, the application process is quick, simple and can be completed entirely online. You don’t ever have to leave your home and the application can take less than 15 minutes to complete.

Bonus: You are welcome to pay off your loan in full at any time without a penalty or any additional fees.

Quote from ConsumerCapital Canada:

ConsumerCapital Canada is always motivated by doing the right thing. Our goal is to deliver a fast, personal, and secure online experience when our customers make the decision to seek out a personal loan. We are proud to deliver our service to our customers with precision and integrity, and to be a part of our customers’ healthy financial lives.


Steve Malone, President and COO


Fairstone Personal Loans

Amount you can access: $500-$30,000
Rate: 19.99% – 39.99%
Terms: 6 – 120 Months

Fairstone is one of Canada’s leading non-bank lenders. They qualify more people with fair to good credit scores, when banks aren’t able to help and they have over 235 branches across the country! Find a branch today!

Bonus: if you like that personal touch, apply for an instant quote online and then a Fairstone Lending Specialist will be in touch via email. The last step is completing the loan process in-branch with your Lending Specialist.

Quote from Fairstone:

“We understand that borrowing money is a reality of life, and that Canadians need responsible lenders to provide loan solutions, for better control of their finances. At Fairstone, we have been proudly helping Canadians with access to responsible credit for close to 100 years. Our long history in Canada helps us understand the unique borrowing needs of Canadians, and we are proud to continue helping people get access to financing when they need it, from a responsible lender.”


Fairstone Team

Money Mart

Amount you can access: $120-$15,000
Rate: 29.90% – 46.90%
Terms: 12 – 60 Months

Money Mart is a leading provider of financial services in North America with over 500 physical locations in Canada. For 40 years they’ve been committed to providing financial solutions that meet the evolving needs of consumers and business owners.

Money Mart offers a variety of financial services such as consumer loans (Installment Loans and Cash Advance), cheque cashing, money transfers, prepaid credit cards and much more.


LendingMate Personal loans Canada

Amount you can access: $2,000-$10,000
Rate: 34.9% – 43%
Terms: 12 – 60 Months

LendingMate is currently in Ontario, British Columbia and Quebec. They are a guarantor lender; so all of their customers must have a guarantor or co-borrower in order to be given a loan. A guarantor is a sign that someone trusts you and that they should too, no matter what your credit score is! To get access to the personal loan, a LendingMate team member has a chat over the phone with both you and your guarantor.

Bonus: LendingMate NEVER charges for late payments, letters, early settlement or anything else.

Quote from LendingMate:

“Our Mission at LendingMate is to make sure that those who are unable to borrow from a bank are able to receive the funds they need at a reasonable rate, particularly when somebody’s credit score is not a true reflection of their affordability. We do this by basing our loans on trust, we ask somebody you know to be your Guarantor.”


Lending Mate

Cash 4 You

Cash 4 You Loans Canada

Amount you can access: $100-$15,000
Rate: 46.93%
Terms: 12 – 60 Months

Cash 4 You is a 100% Canadian company with over 100 locations all over the country. Access personal loans that have fixed payments, fixed rates, and no prepayment penalties.

SkyCap Financial

SkyCap Poor Credit Personal Loans

Amount you can access: $500-$10,000
Rate: 12.99% – 39.99%
Terms: 9 – 36 Months

SkyCap Financial specializes in helping people with low credit or poor credit get the financial assistance they need. They offer short-term loans ranging from $500 to $10,000. Once your application has been approved, the funds are deposited directly into your bank account so you don’t have to wait for a cheque to arrive in the mail. After the money is distributed, SkyCap Financial sets up an automatic payment program, that way, the loan payments are withdrawn from your account on a regular schedule.

Bonus: SkyCap Financial provides SkyCap University, a free online course aimed at improving financial literacy for SkyCap Financial clients. The course covers several basic financial topics such as creating a budget, dealing with credit and loans, and preparing for retirement.

Quote from SkyCap Financial

“What sets SkyCap Financial apart from other lenders is our focus on improving our clients’ personal situations.  We live by that mission every day.  We have a unique fiscal literacy program called SkyCap University which is offered free to our clients and allows them to learn more about managing their own finances from budgeting, to credit, to retirement and life events.  We even offer graduates of SkyCap University with perfect loan payments to have a 10% interest rate reduction. It is a win-win as the client gets educated and saves money on their loan.”


Peter Young, Vice President Operations, SkyCap Financial

Eastern Loans

Amount you can access: $500-$1,000
Rate: Varies by Province
Terms: 3 – 6 Months

Since 2014, has been able to provide a tremendous customer service experience to Canadians. We take pride in the fact that we are fast, secure and easy to use. Apply now and receive your money today! Nous parlons aussi français! Hablamos español tambien!


LendDirect Personal Loans Canada

Amount you can access: $100-$15,000
Rate: 19.99% – 46.93%
Terms: Open Line of Credit

You can complete your loan application 100% online, or by visiting a LendDirect branch. When applying, you will need to provide personal, income & bank account information. If your application is approved after you meet all the conditions, the funds will be sent via Interac e-Transfer® in under 2 hours.

Bonus: LendDirect offers Loan Protection. Your loan payments and/or outstanding loan balance may be covered if you experience involuntary unemployment, disability or even loss of life.

Quote from LendDirect:

LendDirect was born when we recognized the need for Canadians to have a more flexible personal loan option – because not everyone’s needs are the same. The LendDirect Personal Line of Credit combines the convenient pay schedule of an installment loan with the ongoing access to credit that a credit card offers. The customer applies once and gets ongoing access to available credit with no fee cash advances to use any way the customer chooses. Our tiered rates make it to where anyone can apply – because you are more than just your credit score.


Justin Gillard, Vice President of Canadian Store Operations and Nick Castelluzzo, District Manager of LendDirect

Cash Money

CashMoney Flexible Personal Loans

Amount you can access: $500-$10,000
Rate: 46.93%
Terms: Open Line of Credit

Cash Money has flexible Personal Loans and since 1992, more than 595,850 Canadians have relied on Cash Money to meet their short-term cash needs quickly. Different types of loans are offered based on your home province but across Canada, customers agree that Cash Money offers great customer service. To apply for a loan, you need to be 18+ years, have a working phone number, open a checkings account, and have a source of income.

Bonus: Cash Money takes your privacy seriously so they don’t ask questions about what the money is intended for.

Quote from Cash Money:

Cash Money started out as a payday lender in 1992. Over the years we learned from our customers and expanded our services to better suit their needs – offering a variety of cash loans for any need to Canadians from Nova Scotia to British Columbia. Customers choose us because of our experience, our reputation for having friendly customer service, our 200 locations across Canada, and our ability to let them choose how they would like to work with us – online, over the phone or in person at one of our stores.


Justin Gillard, Vice President of Canadian Store Operation


loan away logo on smarter loans

Amount you can access: $1,000-$5,000
Rate: 19.9% – 45.9%
Terms: 12 – 36 Months

Loan Away is a Canadian owned and operated online-only lender. This means they don’t have expensive retail branches or locations to maintain, and more savings can be passed onto customers. They use unique proprietary technology to approve loan applications. It’s easy to fill out applications in the comfort and privacy of your home.

Personal Loan Frequently Asked Questions

Who Should Get a Personal Loan?

Personal loans are meant for any individual looking for extra money for a need that they can’t currently afford. Borrowing extra money can help you complete some construction projects, upgrade your education, invest, consolidate other debts, and purchase some big ticket items.

There are many reasons to get a personal loan. Most of these reasons surround basic expenses that can’t be covered right now. Personal loans should be taken by anyone who needs money for a specific reason and has the means to pay back the loans as per the loan’s terms.

How Do Personal Loan Interest Rates Work in Canada?

The interest rates you’ll have access to are determined by several factors. The most significant factor will be your credit score. Typically, the higher your credit score is, the better the interest rates you’ll be offered on a personal loan. Other factors such as your income and the loan term you choose will also factor into the interest rate you’ll be provided with.

What are Personal Loans Pros in Canada?

1. Easy to get unless your credit score is very low
2. Can be used for most purposes
3. Provides a way to make purchases that would otherwise be impossible
4. Provides an affordable method for making large purchases
5. Can save you from a financial disaster when used responsibly
6. Can be used to consolidate other debts

What Fees Are Associated with Personal Loans?

Personal loans can carry other fees. The most common fees are late fees, which you’ll have to pay should you fail to make your payments on time, as per the terms you agreed to.

Many personal lenders also charge exit/prepayment fees. If you want to pay off your loan earlier than expected, these lenders will charge you a fee to do it. This may sound counter-intuitive, but lenders make their money from interest. By paying them too soon, you are cutting the profits they would have made if you had paid them back over the total lifetime of the loan.

Lastly, some lenders will also charge origination fees. These fees are charged to you so that the lenders can cover the costs of processing your loan.

What To Look Out For When Taking A Personal Loan?

1. They can become a serious burden if you repeatedly fail to make payments

2. They add to the cost of whatever you are purchasing

3. If you have a bad credit score, they can be quite expensive and hard to get

The Types Of Personal Loans: Which One Is Best For You?

Personal loans come in multiple forms and with a few specific conditions. The conditions can be broken down as:

– Secured vs unsecured
– Fixed-rate vs variable rate

Secured personal loans are loans that require you to put up collateral. Certain lenders will require that you have collateral for their loans, depending on certain circumstances. The main way they determine if you need to put up collateral is through your credit score. The higher your credit score is, the fewer collateral requirements you’ll encounter.

Fixed-rate loans are far more common than variable-rate loans. Loans with fixed rates stay the same, as do your monthly payments.

Variable-rate loans come with a benchmark rate set by the lender, but the rates are subject to change. These loans will see their interest rates and monthly payments change alongside the bank’s benchmark rate. Loans like this are rarer than fixed-rate loans and usually offer better APRs.

There are also several kinds of personal loans. Because certain large expenses are so common, there are several unique categories of loans. These categories include:

1. General term loans
2. Car loans
3. Home equity loans

These kinds of loans will carry a few differences from each other, apart from the expense each kind of loan was meant for. For example, car loans require you to own a vehicle, which will be used as collateral. Home equity loans are similar, but are meant for homeowners, because the equity in their home is used as collateral.

The type of loan that is best for you depends on your situation. The main thing to keep in mind is that the lower your credit score is, the fewer options you’ll have

What’s the Difference between Personal Loans and Credit Cards?

While both personal loans and credit cards are provided based on your credit score and other financial information, there are a few key differences.

Typically, you would use a personal loan for a single, specific purpose. Most of the time, you can borrow far more money (in a lump sum) from a personal loan than you can from a credit card.

The most significant difference between a personal loan and a credit card is the long-term credit balance offered. Credit cards typically offer long-term, if not lifetime access to credit. Personal loans, on the other hand, have a much more controlled and specific scope. The benefit you get from a personal loan is a larger sum, which helps far more with high-value purchases. They typically also offer lower interest rates.

How Do I Qualify For A Personal Loan?

Unless your credit score is below 300, you should qualify for at least some loans. To qualify for a loan, you need to meet the following basic requirements:

1. Proof of income
2. Your bank account information
3. Your address

Often you need to prove you are currently employed, and your age. After you apply, the lender will check your credit score to see if you’re a good candidate for the loan. Someone with good credit (a score over 690) is eligible for lower rates. If you have bad credit-don’t fret- you may still be eligible for a loan but the interest rate will likely be higher.

Beyond the basic requirements, you’ll need to meet more specific requirements as laid out by specific lenders. Some lenders require more paperwork than others. Some also have a higher bar of entry than others.

What Personal Loan Interest Rate Can You Expect?

Note: The figures below are rough estimates and can change substantially based on each person’s individual circumstances.

Credit Score Average APR*
Excellent (800 to 900) Approximate APR* of 5.9%
Very Good (720 to 799) Approximate APR of 7.9%
Good (650 to 719) Approximate APR of 19.99%
Fair (600 to 649) Approximate APR of 29.99%
Poor (300 to 599) Approximate APR of 46%

* APR (annual percentage rate) – the interest rate for a whole year.

Credit scores fluctuate as your money habits change and there are dozens of ways you can increase your credit score, including: 

Paying your bills on time: set up automatic payments so you never miss a bill payment

Pay off debt: This is easier said than done… but if you have a lot of credit card debt, pay some of it off before applying for a loan. You may also be able to consolidate your debt using a lower interest loan. 

Keep your balance low on your credit card: One of the elements that affects your credit score is your utilization rate. If your credit limit on your card is $5,000 and you always max it out, your utilization rate is 100%. Lenders typically want to see ratios below 30% which shows you can control your spending and manage your money. So, using the same $5,000 credit limit, a 30% utilization is $1,500. 

Don’t ‘shop around’ for different loans and credit cards: This tip may seem like counterintuitive advice but hear us out! Every time someone checks your credit, it affects your score. There are soft checks, and hard checks. In a soft check, your credit is viewed by either you or a potential lender so you can be pre-approved, and your score is not affected. If you apply for a mortgage, a credit card, and some other loans, the lender will conduct a hard check to review your spending and money management history. Too many hard checks will hurt your credit score. Using  will help you compare loans without multiple lenders checking your credit score.

Borrow Money Responsibly

To ensure that taking out a loan is in your best interest, create a plan that outlines your repayment strategy. Then, do some research to see which loan is best for you! We’ve included a review of top personal loan lenders to help you with your research.

Canada’s Top Personal Loan Providers

With Smarter Loans you can find any loan, for any purpose, anywhere in Canada. Whether you need money for a home project or to consolidate debt, help you easily compare lenders and their products without taking a hit to your credit score. Once you’ve reviewed the perks of each lender, pick a company of your choice or let Smarter Loans do the work for you. Smarter Loans only works with top quality, reputable lenders. We use a panel of over industry experts to review and qualify Canada’s best personal loan providers 2021 so you can be sure we connect you with only the most trustworthy companies.



Authors and Contributors

Liz Enriquez Smarter Loans

Liz Enriquez – Head Writer

Liz was responsible for gathering research, data and analytics from various sources and presenting the findings in this article.  Liz Enriquez is an adventurer, entrepreneur, and life-long learner. Liz traveled around the world at age 21, saved $56,000 by age 23, purchased her house at age 24 and grew her net worth to $100,000 by age 26. She started her blog Ambitious Adulting to document and chronicle her learning journey about finances, and to help Canadians learn about saving, budgeting, and investing.

Smarter Loans – Research, Data and Analytics

Smarter Loans helps Canadians make smarter financial decisions by educating them about Canada’s most innovative financial products, and connecting them with Canada’s top financial companies in a safe, fast and convenient way. Information in this article was compiled based on Smarter Loans profiles for each lender, as well as proprietary data and analytics. All lender profiles on Smarter Loans are reviewed and verified by the profiled companies for accuracy and most up to date information about products, services, fees, interest rates and other details.

Canadian Lenders – Quote Contributions

We reached out to every company on this list and asked them to contribute a quote to the article. We want to thank all the lenders that contributed to this article: Mogo, ConsumerCapital Canada, Fairstone, Magical Credit, Lending Mage, Cash 4 You, SkyCap Financial, Fast Access Financial, LendDirect, CashMoney, and Ferratum Money.