Gaining an approval for a personal or home loan is more difficult for a single mother with only one income. Having a bad credit history only compounds the problem.

There is no such thing as a personal or government loan program specifically earmarked for single parents. Do not be fooled by misleading articles and headlines suggesting otherwise.

However, solo moms can improve the chances of getting the emergency cash or home they need.

  1. Show all income sources and open a checking account for personal loans
  2. Government programs can help with buying a house or renting an apartment

Personal Loans for Single Mothers Bad Credit

Unsecured personal loans for single mothers with bad credit history offer the opportunity to obtain cash quickly without pledging collateral. The most common forms of collateral are cars or houses followed by jewelry. You do not put these assets at risk with an unsecured account.

Request a personal loan here. Single parents with a steady income and established job history can often overcome a low credit score. Submitting your qualifications online to a broad network of sub-prime lenders improve your chances of getting the emergency cash you need.

Those with low income, unemployed, or without a bank account should explore special considerations first.

Low Income

Personal loans for single mothers on a low income are viable provided payment history is positive, the amount is small, and the repayment terms are longer. Everything is relative. Low income does not always mean bad credit history.

  • Positive payment history translates into a decent credit score. This shows the lenders that you have a higher-than-average chance of repaying what you owe on time.
  • Starting with a small principle amount keeps the installment payments in check. The amount borrowed is an important component determining the size of payments.
  • Choosing a longer repayment term also keeps the installment payments at a reasonable level. The number is a second factor influencing the size of payments.

Keep the debt-to-income (DTI) ratio below 20% to increase your odds of approval. You calculate DTI by dividing the monthly payment by monthly income. A solo mom with low income can still have a good DTI by borrowing small amounts and extending the term.

No Bank Account

Single mothers with bad credit and no banks account also find it difficult to qualify for an unsecured personal loan. Most non-prime lenders require this information to safeguard their investment.

  • Verifies that the person is real and not attempting fraud
  • Enables the lender to send funds electronically after an approval
  • Auto drafting the bank account ensures prompt payment

Most sub-prime online lenders require the bank account and routing number before considering a loan request. They do not like mailing paper checks. They especially hate when borrowers do not return their money on time and in a safe manner. Mailing cash in an envelope is a non-starter.

Beware of any company promising a quick approval to someone with no bank account. You need the ability to write checks or return the funds safely and securely.

Open a checking account before borrowing money. Avoid a shady operation.


Single mothers find it difficult to qualify an unsecured personal loan when they have bad credit and they are unemployed. You already have two strikes against you when completing your request.

  1. Low credit scores indicate that you have a high probability of default
  2. Unemployed means you have no job or income to support future payments

Avoid strike three on your application. Demonstrate that you have alternative means to repay the lender on time and according to terms. Have the legal paperwork on hand to verify any of these alternative forms of cash support.

  • Alimony
  • Child Support
  • Unemployment Benefits
  • Disability Benefits
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families

Home Loans & Housing Programs for Single Mothers

Single parents with bad credit need a decent safe home to live and raise her children in. The big question every family faces is whether it is better to rent or own the place where you live. Government programs make each option more palatable.

There are pros and cons to both renting and owning. Apply the reality of your individual financial situation to determine which option works best.

Buying a Home

Home loans for single mothers with poor credit are difficult to obtain. Mortgage lenders consider three main factors when evaluating an application. You would need to compensate by over-performing on at least two other factors in order to qualify.

  1. Credit score should meet or exceed stated minimums
    • Fannie Mae – 620
    • Freddie Mac – 620
    • FHA – 580
    • USDA – No floor
    • VA – No floor
  2. Debt-to-Income (DTI) ratio should fall under ceiling guidelines
    • Front-end 28%
    • Back-end 36%
  3. Down payment size above 20% avoids mortgage insurance
    • FHA
    • USDA
    • PMI

Solo parents with only one income often find it hard to present both a low DTI and a large down payment. The government (FHA and USDA) offers down payment assistance at a price: ongoing mortgage insurance.

Renting an Apartment

Single dads and moms often find that renting an apartment is the most affordable alternative. Living as a tenant helps solo parents who lack the resources to own a home.

Taking out a loan to rent an apartment is a desperate move best avoided. The property owner will spread the rent payments out over time anyway – without interest charges. Why pay interest when you do not have to?

Two instances make sense to borrow money.

  1. Fund the apartment rental security deposit
  2. Avoid eviction due to late payment

Look into government assistance and a local Bridge of Hope chapter before taking this step.

Government Housing Assistance

Government housing programs can often help single mothers with bad credit to access affordable apartment leases. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) targets low-income families for financial help paying for rental housing. You may qualify for three different plans.

  1. Privately owned subsidized housing
  2. Public housing
  3. Housing Choice Voucher Program (Section 8)

Bridge of Hope

The Bridge of Hope is a faith-based organization that provides single women and their children with rental assistance. Their ministry focuses on single moms because they make up 80% of homeless families – according to the Annual Homeless Assessment Report to Congress.

They believe that the church needs to be in a relationship with this vulnerable population in order to bless others and renew a sense of community. Licensed social workers partner with neighboring volunteers to help women and families in need.