Can Emergency Loans Help Prevent Rental Eviction?

Many tenants facing eviction struggle with two financial issues: they cannot pay future rent and repay a new loan simultaneously.

Maintain low payment amounts to ensure you can stay in your apartment for the entire lease.

Tenants have two strategies to keep the monthly payments affordable.

Longer-term loans result in lower monthly payments, giving the borrower more time for repayment.

Before borrowing, explore all government assistance programs to reduce the amount you need to borrow.

Emergency Eviction Loans

Acting early to prevent eviction is more effective than waiting until it’s imminent. If you need a loan for rent, applying sooner rather than later can give you more options for longer repayment terms.

Avoiding eviction keeps debt collections off your credit report. Once your credit report shows negative marks, you become less eligible for loans with extended repayment terms.

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Request a loan that covers only your past-due rent, late fees, damage costs, and expected legal fees.

Online Networks

Tenants needing emergency rent loans should seek alternatives to direct lenders for better options. Using an intermediary can speed up securing a loan with longer repayment terms.

In a financial crisis, online lender networks may provide faster assistance than direct lenders. Evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of using online networks versus direct lenders.

Online NetworkDirect Lender
Submit credentials once.Submit credentials multiple times.
Many lenders view your profile simultaneously.One lender views your profile with each submission.
Subprime lenders specialize in consumers with poor credentials.Prime lenders focus on consumers with good credit.

Direct lenders’ loan approval processes are often slower. However, an online network can help you get quickly approved for a loan with longer repayment terms.

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No History

Many online lenders offer unsecured loans specifically for individuals without a borrowing history. These lenders do not check credit files from Experian, Equifax, or TransUnion, nor do they consider FICO® or Vantage® credit scores.

Lenders evaluate young adults without a credit history using alternative financial data to predict their ability to make future payments. These non-traditional files, which include utility bills such as phone, internet, and electricity, emphasize the applicant’s apartment rental history most.

To secure better loan conditions, young adults without a credit history should apply for funding before facing financial emergencies. Applying before accruing late rental payments can increase their chances of obtaining loans with extended repayment periods.

No Credit Check

Renters with bad credit due to collection accounts often struggle to be approved for emergency loans with longer repayment periods. Secured loans can be approved quickly for tenants without a credit check but have significant downsides.

  • One major drawback is the short repayment term, typically only 30 days, which can be difficult for borrowers to meet.
  • High origination fees can significantly increase the cost of loan renewals, adding to the borrower’s financial burden.

Title Loans

Vehicle title loans typically do not include a credit check and can raise money quickly for emergencies. A title loan might raise enough money to prevent eviction if you have sufficient equity in your car to pledge as collateral.

Follow these steps to determine if a title loan will satisfy your landlord’s demands for back rent.

  1. Establish the market value using Kelly Blue Book.
  2. Subtract the current balance on your auto loan.
  3. Multiply the difference by a 50% loan-to-value ratio.

Please consider that title loans have serious drawbacks.

  • They are not legal in every state
  • The average repayment term is 30 days
  • Origination fees add up quickly if you renew the loan
  • Lenders can repossess your car if you default

Pawnshop Loans

Pawnshop loans typically do not include a credit check and can raise money quickly for emergencies. If you have valuable personal possessions to pledge as collateral, a pawn loan might raise enough cash to prevent eviction. 

Search your belongings for items a pawnshop can readily sell to recoup losses should you default on the loan. You must have proof of ownership for any jewelry, firearms, electronics, tools, or musical instruments.

Remember that pawnshop loans share the same drawbacks as title loans. They are not legal in every state; the average term is 30 days, origination fees add up quickly if you renew the loan, and the lender can sell your possessions if you default.

Eviction Assistance Programs

Private and government rental assistance programs are the best way to reduce the size of an emergency eviction loan request. The less money you need to borrow, the lower your monthly payments.

A benefit you do not have to repay is superior to a loan. Therefore, explore every assistance possibility first. However, the opportunities are dwindling as the COVID-19 pandemic fades.

Emergency Rental Assistance

Tenants who qualify for Emergency Rental Assistance may need to borrow less money to avoid eviction, as the government might cover most of the costs.

The federal government established the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program during the Coronavirus pandemic. The American Rescue Plan Act authorized funding for the second phase through September 2025.

Apply for ERA benefits through the designated agency in your area. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau suggests calling 211 or searching the 211 website to find available resources.

The National Low-Income Housing Coalition maintains a searchable database of local agencies administering ERA benefits. Unfortunately, it shows that most programs are not accepting applicants due to limited funding.

  • Program Closed: 205
  • Program Permanently Closed: 267
  • Accepting Applications: 40

The federal ERA Program allows local programs to cover rent, utility payments in arrears, and future bills. Many landlords include electricity, gas, fuel oil, water and sewer, and trash removal in the lease agreement.

Eviction Protections

Tenants living in states with ongoing eviction protection laws might be able to reduce the amount of money they must borrow to stay in their apartments.

Several states enacted eviction protection laws during the COVID-19 epidemic without specifying an expiration date. If you live in one of these states, you might stop eviction by filing an affidavit or agreeing to a repayment plan with your landlord.

According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, eviction moratoriums in Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, and Washington have no end dates.

Legal Aid

Tenants qualifying for legal aid might need smaller loan amounts because they may not have to pay attorney fees to fight an eviction in court.

Non-profit organizations and government agencies offer legal aid to low-income families who often can’t afford a lawyer for rent issues.

Landlord-tenant laws are complex and different in each state. It’s essential to have a lawyer to represent you. Contact your local legal aid organization or social service agency.

Here are some resources for legal assistance:

A pro bono lawyer can defend you in court by focusing on improper notices, unsafe housing conditions, discrimination, unfair debt collection, or if you’re a domestic abuse survivor seeking to stay in your home.

Utility Assistance

Two government programs help with overdue utility bills. If your rent includes gas, electricity, and water costs, they may reduce the loan you need.

Both programs have different rules than the Emergency Rental Assistance and will accept applications beyond September 2025.


The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) reduces gas and electric bills. Contact the responsible agency in your state.

LIHEAP assists tenants with energy costs for heating, cooling, bathing, and cooking, which may be included in their rent.


The Low-Income Water Assistance Program (LIWAP) reduces sewer and water charges. LIWAP helps families pay overdue bills to reconnect and keep their water and sewer services.

LIWAP assists tenants whose rent covers water and sewer bills for household needs like cleaning, bathing, and laundry.