Personal Loans Alberta

Alberta offers a variety of options when it comes to personal loans, and when searching for the right lender, you’ll want to find a firm that has a strong reputation, and that will offer you access to your money quickly and at a fair rate. A traditional personal loan from a bank may be the first thing you think of, but getting approved by a bank can take time, and there are many other options to explore.

Many of these options are available online, and have competitive interest rates and streamlined application processes. But trusting an online lender isn’t always easy; that’s why Smarter Loans has taken the guesswork out of the equation, by vetting lenders who offer personal loans in Alberta, and shortlisting just those with reputable practices and competitive terms.

You can see this shortlist in the table below, along with their terms and reviews. You can apply directly with a lender from their profile page, or you can submit a form here to get help from Smarter Loan experts in finding the best lender for your personal loan needs.

Quick Links

  1. Who Can Get a Personal Loan in Alberta?
  2. What Types of Personal Loan Are Available in Alberta?
  3. Where Can I Get a Personal Loan in Alberta?
  4. How Can You Use a Personal Loan?
  5. Personal Loan Eligibility Requirements in Alberta
  6. How Do I Apply for a Personal Loan in Alberta?
  7. Choosing the Right Personal Loan in Alberta
  8. Alberta Personal Loans FAQs

Where Can I Get a Personal Loan in Alberta?

The basic requirements for personal loans in Alberta are simple. All loan applicants must:

  • Be 18 years or age older
  • Have a valid bank account
  • Be able to prove residence

If you pass these requirements, then you will be eligible for some form of personal loan – though not necessarily every loan from every lender. Different financial institutions have different eligibility criteria for their loan products, so you will need to check with a specific lender to see if you qualify for a loan from them. Factors such as income, credit score and so on will potentially be looked at during the application process.

Chart showing amount of debt held by Canadians, by age group.

What Types of Personal Loan Are Available in Alberta?

Graph showing percentage of Canadians holding different types of debt.

A personal loan is any loan offered to general consumers, and there are many different types available. Generally, a personal loan will allow you to borrow a fixed amount of money via a lump sum, which you must then repay over time, plus interest and any associated fees. There are two main classes of personal loan: secured personal loans and unsecured personal loans.

Secured Loan

A secured personal loan (or title loan) is “secured” by putting up an asset (like your house or car) as collateral in the event you can’t repay the money you owe. Because this is considered less risky by lenders, you can often borrow a larger sum of money at a lower interest rate, or get approved even when you have a poor credit score.

Unsecured Loan

Most personal loans take the form of an unsecured installment loan, with no collateral required. This means you do not need to have any assets to get one. But because this makes them a riskier proposition for lenders, unsecured personal loans tend to be for smaller amounts and have higher interest rates and stricter payment schedules than secured loans.

Personal Loan Examples

All of the following are types of personal loan:


Table showing average amount of debt held by Canadians, by debt type.


Where Can I Get a Personal Loan in Alberta?

Graph showing non-mortgage loan origination by source; banks are still the most common lender.


Personal loans are readily available across Alberta, so Alberta residents have multiple lenders to choose from. Loan products of all types are typically available from:

  • Banks
  • Credit unions
  • Alternative lenders
  • Online lenders

In addition, specific loans are available from your chosen:

  • Mortgage brokerage
  • Vehicle dealership
  • Payday lender
  • Private wealth financial institution


Are Online Personal Loans in Alberta Safe?


Many loans in Alberta are accessible entirely online; some lenders have brick-and-mortar locations as well as online solutions (and this includes most banks and credit unions), while other lenders are based entirely online. The presence of an online application process is therefore not unusual, but that doesn’t mean they’re always 100% safe.

As with any financial transaction, it’s important to keep your data safe; it’s also important to ensure you are working with a lender that has robust security and transparent lending practices. Your financial stability is at risk if you do not check the terms and conditions of any loan applications you make, as well as the details of any loan contract you enter into.

Getting a personal loan online can be safe, convenient and fast, but don’t let the lure of quick cash blind you to the necessity of doing your homework. That’s why we’ve curated the list shown at the top of this page – to save you time as you hunt for the best personal loans in Alberta.


How Can You Use a Personal Loan?

Chart showing that most personal loans are used to consolidate other debt.

Personal loans are versatile and come in many forms, and are commonly used by Canadians for all manner of reasons. Here are some of the most common:

  • Debt consolidation
  • Unexpected emergencies
  • Home improvement and home repairs
  • Vehicle purchase or repair
  • Wedding or vacation
  • To pay off student loans
  • Medical bill coverage
  • New venture funding

Personal Loan Eligibility Requirements in Alberta

Banks and other lenders will consider a number of factors when weighing approval of your personal loan. While each lender is different, the below are the most common considerations when assessing a borrower:

Credit Score

Chart showing credit score ranges.

In general, the better your credit score, the more reliable you’ll appear in terms of making regular payments to your lender, and the easier it will be to get a loan. As an example, most traditional banks will require a credit score of 670 or above.

Your credit score reflects your entire credit history, so it’s not something you can quickly change or amend. Keeping a close eye on your credit report or using an app to access your free credit score is one way to ensure nothing erroneous appears on your credit report to hamper future loan applications.

A high credit score helps with loan approval and cost, but it’s not a necessity. You can still qualify for a loan with bad credit – you’ll just have to pay a higher interest rate.



Table showing after-tax income by province. Alberta’s fell from 2015-2020.

The higher your income, the easier it will be to qualify for a personal loan in Alberta. This is because lenders will feel that you are in a more secure financial situation. It’s also the case that the higher your income, the more money you will be able to borrow – for the exact same reason.

Employment Status


Chart showing rate of unemployment in Alberta.

Salaried employees with a steady income stream will usually have an easier time getting approved than someone who’s self-employed or a contract worker. But steady income need not be employment related; those on benefits or a pension who can demonstrate they receive regular income will be able to secure personal loans in Alberta.

Financial Commitments & Other Debts

Graph showing average monthly loan payments in Canada by loan type.


If you pay alimony, spousal, or child support, these amounts will be factored into your application. Similarly, if you’re carrying other debt (like a mortgage, line of credit, student loan or car loan) these loan details and payment amounts will be assessed.

Too many financial obligations could result in your loan amount being reduced (or the application denied). This is because the lender wants to make sure you will be able to make each and every loan payment, and if you have other personal loan payments to make, you are less likely to be able to meet all of your obligations.




If you own a valuable asset – like a property – you can use this as collateral to secure better loan terms (like a lower interest rate or larger loan amount).


Alternate Routes to Loan Approval

While the factors mentioned above are among those most commonly considered by lenders offering personal loans in Alberta, not all lenders rely on the same factors – and different lenders place more importance on some factors than others. This means that even if you have bad credit, no credit history in Canada, unconventional income, a lack of assets, or other issues you worry may negatively affect your chances of loan approval, you don’t need to panic. There are realistic routes to loan approval for all Alberta residents. You just need to remember that loan amounts may be smaller, interest rates higher, or you may simply have to shop around a little more to find the best personal loans for your situation.

How Do I Apply for a Personal Loan in Alberta?

Chart showing average household debt across Canada; Alberta has the highest debt levels.

To apply for a personal loan in Alberta, the first thing you need to do is find the right lender. More on this below!

Once you’ve found a lender, you will need to apply using their system. This may be possible online or in-person, depending on which lender in Alberta you choose. In either instance, you need to make sure you have the documents required to hand. The exact breakdown of required paperwork will depend on the lender you apply to, but in general you’ll have to provide:

  • I.D.
  • Proof of address
  • Bank account information
  • Employment information

Once the paperwork is received, the lender will assess everything, and decide whether you are approved. If approved, you will receive a loan offer that details the loan amount, repayment terms, interest rate and so on. This loan offer should be thoroughly reviewed by you, and only signed if you are fully happy with the contract. Once you accept a loan offer, the lender will send you the full loan amount, and your first repayment will be due as per your arrangement.

If, after a lender assesses your income and credit score, they are not 100% satisfied with your application, they may not necessarily outright reject you as a borrower. Sometimes a lender will offer a lower loan amount than applied for, as a compromise solution.

Chart showing distribution of Alberta households by income level.

A Word on Minimizing Applications

In most circumstances, a loan application that requires a credit check will do what is known as a “hard inquiry” on your credit report. This hard inquiry will have a temporary, negative effect on your credit score (even if you’re not approved for the loan). For this reason, it’s important to minimize the number of applications you make at any one time, and know what qualification criteria and required documents you need before you apply anywhere.


Choosing the Right Personal Loan in Alberta

With so many loan options and providers in Canada, you need to know how to compare all of your different loan options. The following are the key factors to consider when you get a personal loan:

Loan Amount

Graph showing how much people borrow with a personal loan, by age group.

Personal loan offerings vary in size depending on their purpose. Unsecured loans are typically between $500 and $10,000, but can go up to $30,000 and more. Secured loans (like home equity loans) can be over $100,000. As mentioned above, credit history and income will likely affect the loan amounts each borrower qualifies for.

Term Length

Distribution of Canadian mortgages by term.

Repayment periods typically range from 3 months to 5 years. Some loans have much longer lifespans; auto loans can have up to 8 year terms, and mortgages up to 30 years. The ty[ape of loan in question has a significant impact on the likely term.

Interest Rate

Graph showing personal loan rates by credit score.


Personal loan interest rates currently range from 6.99% (with a good credit score) to 47.72%. A competitive interest rate can be either fixed or variable (a fixed rate stays the same for the term of the loan, while a variable rate fluctuates with Canada’s prime rate).

Fixed Interest Rate vs. Variable Interest Rate

Graph showing fixed versus variable interest rates over time in Canada.

There are pros and cons of both fixed and variable interest rates, so choosing between them depends on your financial situation and what rate your credit score qualifies you for. The main thing to remember is that with a fixed rate, your monthly payments will remain the same for the life of the loan, and your loan term is fixed. You’ll know exactly when it will be entirely paid off.

With a variable rate, your interest rate can change, which means that either your monthly payments may change (increasing or decreasing), or the term of your loan may change (so that your monthly amount remains the same, but how long it’ll take you to pay off the loan will vary). This makes a variable rate more unpredictable.

Repayment Structure

Chart showing rate of debt non-repayment over time.

Although monthly payments on personal loans are more common than bi-weekly, semi-monthly, or weekly payments, repayment structures vary with the loan terms. Most lenders will allow some flexibility in your repayment frequency.

Applicable Fees

All loans have some fees, and each lender is different. You may have to consider administration fees, origination fees, prepayment penalties, late payment penalties, and so on. It’s crucial to take into account the effect these fees will have on your overall loan cost – and to avoid any lender that uses surprise fees.

Type of Loan

As mentioned above, a personal loan may be secured (by your personal asset) or unsecured. They also come in a variety of shapes – from installment loans to payday loans – so your intended use of the funds from the loan may impact what type of loan you can access.

Secured Loan vs. Unsecured Loan

Unsecured loans in Alberta are a bit harder to qualify for than secured loans. If you can’t supply collateral, personal lenders will view you as riskier. So, interest rates will be higher without collateral, and standards for qualifying will be more stringent.

With unsecured loans, you are more likely to have to show regular income and a good credit score. Conversely, with secured loans, your credit score matters less (making them easier to qualify for and a better option for bad credit borrowers).

If you don’t have collateral and are struggling to qualify for a personal loan because of bad credit – or if you’re seeking lower interest rates in general – then getting a co-signer for your loan may help, both with qualifying and the interest rate you pay. Lower rates are available to those who share the financial and legal responsibility of their loan with another party – as long as that other party is amenable and has a solid credit score or few other debts.


Speed of Application

Graph showing percentage of Albertans within $200 of insolvency over time.

One of the primary considerations when many people search for funding is speed: how long does it take to apply, how long is the wait time, and how quickly can you receive funds once approved? Your local bank may have loans with attractive interest rates, but it can take weeks for a bank to process an application – which makes them unhelpful in emergencies. This is one reason why there are so many online loans available in Alberta (and across the rest of Canada).

Online personal loan lenders are often very fast. An online company may only need a few hours to accept your application and send funds. This makes them ideal when time is of the essence, or convenience is paramount. It may be of less importance when a person needs funds for a longer term project.


Alberta Personal Loans FAQs

How much can you borrow with a personal loan in Alberta?

That depends on what type of loan you apply for, your credit score, and the loan company you apply to. Amounts from just a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands are available.

How much will a personal loan in Alberta cost?

Again, this depends. Each person has their own financial profile, including credit score, pay level, other debts, and so on. This profile, as well as the type of loan applied for, the loan company in question, and the loan amount, will all determine interest rate, fees and other costs. In general, interest rates from 7% are available for the most qualified borrowers.

Are bad credit personal loans available in Alberta?

Yes, you can get a personal loan if you have bad credit. You can check our bad credit loan table to compare bad credit personal loans in Alberta. Bad credit personal loans charge higher interest rates, but they still allow fast access to cash.

Can I get a no credit check personal loan in Alberta?

Yes, you don’t necessarily need a credit check for a personal loan. You can resort to Alberta personal loans with no credit check if you don’t want a personal lender to assess your credit score. Just keep in mind that these lenders will often charge higher rates.

Are payday loans available in Alberta?

Yes. A payday company can provide quick funds without reference to your credit, and is dependent on your pay check alone. However interest rates on payday loans can be high, so a fast online loan may be a better option.

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