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2021 Tribal Installment Loan Rankings

Updated March 18, 2021
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Tribal Installment Loans

Tribal installment loans are quick, simple loans available to people with all credit types. In some cases up to $25K can be deposited into your account often by the next day. Typically, people borrow much less as these loans are expensive. They really only make sense for short-term, emergency funding. These loans are made and regulated by Native American tribes

We review tribal lenders based on reputation, costs, and features. Reputation considers state licensing and Better Business Bureau scores. Cost is based on terms, fees, and rates. Features include things like credit reporting or fee transparency. We rank them with other lenders below. Tribal lenders are identified as a "Tribe Based Lender" under the "Lender status" label.

Filter rankings by state:
Check Into Cash
$100 - $25,000
Loan amounts
195% - 521%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Check Into Cash for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$500 - $4,000
Loan amounts
99% - 199%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit OppLoans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
Ace Cash Express
$100 - $2,000
Loan amounts
175% - 1,029%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Ace Cash Express for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$100 - $2,000
Loan amounts
299% - 456%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit CashNetUSA for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$100 - $500
Loan amounts
155% - 164%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit LendUp for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$100 - $5,000
Loan amounts
180% - 740%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Cash Central for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$100 - $50,000
Loan amounts
168% - 390%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Cash 1 for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
Advance America
$50 - $25,000
Loan amounts
36% - 664%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Advance America for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$300 - $5,000
Loan amounts
60% - 299%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit RISE for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$1,000 - $35,000*
Loan amounts
7.99% - ?
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Stilt for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$100 - $500
Loan amounts
146% - 548%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Quik Check for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$500 - $2,600
Loan amounts
170% - 349%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Jora for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$100 - $1000
Loan amounts
313% - 780%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Cash Store for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$100 - $2,000
Loan amounts
178% - 680%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Speedy Cash for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
$250 - $5,000
Loan amounts
314% - 662%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Check 'n Go for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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State Licensed Lender
Lender status
Big Picture Loans
$200 - $3,500
Loan amounts
35% - 699%*
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Big Picture Loans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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Tribe Based Lender
Lender status
Plain Green Loans
$1,000
Loan amounts
300%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Plain Green Loans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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Tribe Based Lender
Lender status
Blue Trust Loans
$100 - $2,500
Loan amounts
782%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Blue Trust Loans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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Tribe Based Lender
Lender status
$10 - $2,500
Loan amounts
206.14% - 442.31%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Mobiloans for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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Tribe Based Lender
Lender status
Cash Advance Now
$300 - $1,500
Loan amounts
725%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit Cash Advance Now for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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Tribe Based Lender
Lender status
$100 to $2,500
Loan amounts
782%
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit MaxLend for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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Tribe Based Lender
Lender status
American Web Loan
$300 to $2,500
Loan amounts
None Listed
APRs
All

Credit type ⓘ

Visit American Web Loan for product eligibility.

Our eligible credit type estimate is a general guide based on FICO® Scores:

Credit Type FICO® Score
All All Scores
Fair 620+
Good 680+
Great 720+
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Tribe Based Lender
Lender status
  • Rates and fees vary by state. Not all lenders operate in all states. Check each lender's website for up-to-date information.

What Are Tribal Installment Loans

Tribal installment loans are offered by lending institutions owned, operated, or affiliated with a federally-recognized Native American community. The loans are typically available to individuals with all types of credit, unsecured, and tied to your pay date. They are generally very easy to qualify for but can be expensive.

Tribal Loans are Installment Loans

These loans are installment loans but offered by tribes instead of state-regulated entities. They are paid back over multiple periods with a set payment amount. The payment amount is based on the interest rate, payment periods, and loan amount. Part of each payment pays off interest and another part principal. Once all payments are made the entire loan is paid off. In the broader sense installment loans include many types of loans such as personal loans, fixed mortgages, auto loans, and student loans. Basically any loan with a fixed payment and finite pay back period are installment loans. Over the last ten years installment loans have become more synonymous with short-term loans. Doshound categorizes installment loans as fixed loans with a term generally less than 2 years. For loans that have a term greater than 2 years see personal loans Personal loans typically have a 2-5 year term, offer larger loan amounts, but are typically require a better credit profile than installment loans.

Tribal Lenders

Tribal lenders offer a similar product to traditional lenders but because they are run under Native American reservations, they are considered sovereign nations and operate under different restrictions from traditional lenders. Tribal lenders are regulated by tribal law instead of state law. This fundamental difference on its own is neither bad nor good. We have historically preferred state-licensed lenders because their regulations are published and monitored by state officials accountable to elected officials. There is also normally deeper case law and history with state lending laws.

Tribal lending laws are generally less transparent making it difficult to know the law of the tribe. One interesting feature of tribal lenders is they do not adhere to state interest rate caps. This means the interest rate on their loans can be set how the tribe decides. This means the loans can be very expensive but it also means they can make loans in states where the cap is prohibitively low for lenders to offer these type of loans.

Another advantage, in theory, is that they can operate with lower administrative costs. They do not have the regulatory costs associated with getting and maintaining licenses in every state they operate. In general, we have not seen tribal lenders pass these cost savings on to consumers but with more transparency and increased competition we may see these savings passed on to consumers.

Many tribal lenders are members of the Native American Financial Services Association (NAFSA) a national trade association formed to advocate tribal sovereignty, promote responsible financial services, and provide better economic opportunity in Indian Country. NAFSA promotes best practice standards around lending, operations, advertising, and payments. We support the establishment of this organization and increased transparency but remember NAFSA is a trade organization so, unlike state-regulated traditional lenders, tribes are not legally bound to follow these guidelines.

Tribal lenders may also bring other benefits to society. These lenders often provide a significant positive economic impact on tribes through social giving, education, housing, employment, and youth programs.

Tribal lenders are able to lend money to both tribal and non-tribal borrowers. In fact, in states where short term lending is banned, these tribal lenders are often the only lenders providing borrowers with an option of short-term loans. Most tribal lenders operate as fair lenders but remember these lenders are not regulated by states or state-elected officials so may not have the same restrictions as licensed state lenders.

Secured Or Unsecured

Loans can be secured or unsecured. Secured loans have collateral so, if the borrower fails to repay, the lender can seize the collateral. Secured loans are generally cheaper than unsecured loans. Mortgages and auto title loans are examples of secured loans

The installment loans reviewed here are unsecured loans. No collateral is needed. When a borrower fails to pay back an unsecured loan the lender has no collateral to seize so must rely on attempting to collect on the debt. As a result, the lending decision around unsecured loans depends on evaluating the ability of the borrower to repay the loan. To determine this likelihood of repayment lenders traditionally rely on credit history, expenses, and income.

Paycheck Installment Loans

The loans listed in this section are paycheck-based loans. Payments for these loans occur on your pay date. Unlike normal unsecured loans, these loans do not consider credit history and instead, are based solely on your employment. To increase the likelihood of being repaid lenders require access to your checking account where you receive your paycheck. On your payday, they deduct your loan payments.

Companies offering paycheck tribal installment loans have made these loans very convenient. They are quick, simple, and do not require good credit. This convenience, flexibility, and availability comes at a cost -- these loans are expensive.

How Tribal Installment Loans Work

If tribal installment loans are right for you, the application process can take less than 5 minutes. Typically, the lender requires that you be 18+ years old, employed, and have direct deposit set up with your employer. If approved, cash can be deposited into your account within one business day. This money plus fees must be repaid in full and payments are automatically deducted from your checking account on payday.

If approved the lender will provide a payment plan. For example, $1,000 could have a repayment plan with a ~$125 payment every pay period (14 days) over the next 24 pay periods. In the end ~$1,000 costs ~$2,400. This is cheaper than what you would have to pay if you took out a payday loan for the same timeframe, but clearly not cheap so make sure you really need this loan. See borrow money options for other ideas such as delaying the expense or getting help from a friend.

Licensed Versus Unlicensed Lenders

Tribal installment loans can be regulated by both federal and state laws. Federal regulations are generally less stringent and less enforced than state regulations. Lenders licensed in your state are regulated and monitored by your state so are more closely regulated. To become state licensed, lenders generally must apply, register, and remain compliant in every state in which they operate. Each state has a separate process so the licensing process can be expensive and time consuming. As a result, state-licensed lenders are generally not fly-by-night entities. Instead, they are usually larger more permanent companies.

Unlicensed tribal installment loans operate in states under the assumption they can export laws from their state or tribe into other states. Tribes refer to formally recognized American Indian Tribes that are generally treated as separate federal entities and operate under their own laws. Tribal lenders were very common with tribes partnering with financing partners. The tribes contribute their legal status and the financing partner provides the capital and operations. Over the years the position that tribes or states could export their laws into other states has been challenged and resulted in many tribal lenders closing down but recently there has been a resurgence in the growth of tribal-based lenders. Doshound believes in transparent markets, fair regulations, and consumer choice. To the extent, the existence of tribal lenders provides more choice this is a good thing. The creation of the self-regulating Native American Financial Services Association (NAFSA) is also a good thing. We'd like to see continued transparency and enforcement to create safer choices for borrowers. For more information see Payday Loan Laws

Installment Versus Payday Loans

Installment loan payments are spread out over time while payday loans are due at your next pay period. Spreading payments out reduces the amount of individual payments and APR but the total fees paid increases. See Payday Loans or Term Loans for more information. Many consumers prefer installment loans because paying the entire loan at your next pay period, as payday loans require, is often too difficult or impossible and renewing payday loans becomes extremely expensive.

Tribal Installment Loans by State

Tribal installment loans are state regulated. Select your state below to find available lenders in your state.

The original Doshound tribal installment loan ranking was published on