How to Get $255 the Same Day Without a Payday Loan (and up to $2,500)

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Alexander Porter

30-SECOND SUMMARY: Under California law, the maximum you can borrow from a payday lender is $300. Add in a maximum fee of 15% (which works out to be $45), and the most you can borrow actually drops to $255. You can get around these borrowing limits with cash advance apps that offer longer loan terms and/or rates under the cap. We found Dave’s $500 cash advance (with no interest or fees) the standout but read on for more ways to get $255 (and more).

Need $500? Check out Dave for yourself 👈

California Flag

Did you know that the maximum amount you can borrow in a payday loan under California Law is $300?

If you’re short on cash and call the Golden State home, here’s the short and sweet version…

The maximum amount a consumer can borrow in California is $300. The maximum fee a payday lender can charge is 15% of the check (up to a maximum of $45). So if you’re applying for the maximum amount of $300, you’ll walk away with $255 once you’ve paid back all fees and charges. That’s not a ton of flexibility if you need more cash.

If you’re a resident of California, it’s helpful to know you won’t have to side-step this rule by being sucked into a cycle of debt or high interest by borrowing $1,000 or more from a predatory payday lender.

So, what do you do if you need to borrow more than $255?

It turns out your best option is literally in your hands.

Thanks to a growing number of innovative cash advance apps, you can borrow up to $2,500 even if you’re dealing with poor credit and without having to pack up and move out of California just to have more options.

How does California law protect you?

Payday loans are short-term and often high-cost. To help you avoid being sucked into a loan that you are unable to repay, here’s a quick overview of your legal rights in California:

  • To do business in California, all payday lenders must be licensed by the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI). 
  • Payday lenders must post their California license and a fee schedule at every location.
  • A payday lender cannot make a new loan to pay off an existing loan.
  • A payday lender cannot issue a new loan while a borrower still has an existing loan, even if the combined balance of the existing loan and the new loan does not exceed $300.
  • If your check bounces, the payday lender may charge only one bounced check fee (up to $15). Be aware: your bank may charge you additional fees for insufficient funds.
  • A payday lender cannot threaten to prosecute you in criminal court to recover insufficient funds.

It all sounds useful, right?

The problem comes when you need to borrow more than $300 (which drops as low as $255 once all charges are added on top). If you want a loan balance that exceeds $300, or a loan term longer than California’s maximum of 31 days, here are three money lending apps to borrow the money you need.

Top 3 apps to borrow (more than) $255

#1: Dave Extra Cash: Borrow $500 with no fees or surprises

Dave cash advances

Dave ExtraCash™ offers you up to $500 without any hidden costs or surprises. 2

As the OG cash advance app, Dave can help you say goodbye to sky-high interest, frustrating credit checks, and bank account-draining late fees.

To find out if you’re eligible, simply open an ExtraCash™ account. Dave will take into account various factors such as your history, spending patterns, and time until your next payday by linking to your bank account.

Once approved, you can immediately request a cash advance. Your Dave cash advance is automatically repaid when you receive your next paycheck. It’s that easy to borrow up to $500 (blowing California’s payday loan limit of $255 out of the water) in a matter of clicks. 

Get a cash advance of up to $500 INSTANTLY >>> Check out Dave FREE 👈

#2: MoneyLion Credit Builder Plus: Borrow up to $1,000 with cash available immediately

borrow $250 from MoneyLion on phone screen

MoneyLion Credit Builder Plus can help you borrow more than $255 with a convenient and flexible loan of up to $1,000. 

Credit Builder Plus loans are designed to boost your credit. The majority of your funds are deposited in a locked savings account. Once you pay back your loan, you get the win-win of potentially improving your credit score AND a lump sum.

So, how does this help you borrow more than $255?

A portion of your funds is immediately available, which can help you get around California’s payday loan limit.

Applying for a Credit Builder Plus loan is easy with the MoneyLion app. Find out if you qualify in a couple of minutes. Once approved, your loan repayments are spread over a 12-month period, freeing you from long-term commitments. 

You have the option to align your payments with your paycheck cycle. O,r choose multiple smaller monthly payments, ensuring you avoid unnecessary financial strain.

Get funds upfront and build credit and savings >>> Check out MoneyLion Credit Builder Plus

#3: PockBox: Borrow up to $2,500 (even with poor credit)

Hand holding phone with PockBox app

If you’re living paycheck to paycheck, relying on small payday loans up to $255 isn’t always going to work. 

PockBox helps solve this problem by connecting you with lenders who cater to all credit scores. That way, you’re not automatically excluded because your credit score has taken a hit.

Provide some basic information about yourself and you’ll instantly receive loan quotes from up to 50 lenders. There’s no commitment to accept any loan offer. So you can take your time to consider potential lenders and carefully weigh your choices without any obligation or risk.

With a mission to assist one million Americans in obtaining the credit they need, PockBox recognizes that a credit score does not define your worth. 

So, even if your credit score is less than ideal, you can still access the cash you require and borrow more than $255.

Quickly Compare Loan Offers Up to $2,500 >>> Browse Pockbox For Free

How does an app like PockBox avoid California’s cap on loan amounts?

If you call California home and jump on Google looking for a loan, you’ll see endless results offering $255 payday loans.

If you need more cash, you can get around these limits with certain options on PockBox or cash advance apps that aren’t subject to this cap. Some lenders may be constrained by California’s $255 payday loan limit. Others can offer more because they have longer loan terms and/or rates that are under the cap.  

💡 OVERDRAFT APPS TAKEAWAY: If you’re looking to borrow more than $255, PockBox can help you sidestep California’s loan ceiling with the added flexibility of a longer payback period.

Quickly Compare Loan Offers Up to $2,500 >>> Browse Pockbox For Free


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WAIT! Why borrow quick cash when you can earn it?!

Cash advance apps can be a great tool for getting a little extra cash when you need it, but you’ll need to repay it – plus fees – wihtin a week or two. Did you know there’s an easy way to earn extra cash that’s yours to keep?

KashKick is a wildly popular service that lets you earn money for playing games, completing surveys, signing up for trial offers and more. (You’ll even earn cash for just completing your profile!) You can earn cash today and withdraw your earnings through PayPal once you’ve reached $10. You can earn over $100/month with KashKick – and you don’t need to spend a dime or take out your credit card to do it.

There are dozens of high-paying offers available on KashKick, and if you’re into playing new games on your phone, you can earn some serious cash for doing what you love. Though offers change regularly, there are currently1 more than three dozen offers available where you can earn cash – sometimes over $100 – just by downloading and playing popular games like Coin Master, Monoply Go, Bingo Blitz, and more. These games are all free to download, and no in-app purchases are required to earn with KashKick.

Get paid to play on your phone >>> Check out KashKick

Alexander Porter
  1. As of February 13, 2024. Offers may change and may not be available to all users. Eligibity requirements apply. See KashKick's Terms of Service for full details.
  2. Designed by Dave, not a bank. Evolve Bank & Trust, Member FDIC, holds all deposits and issues the Dave Debit Card, pursuant to a license from Mastercard®.ExtraCash™ is a DDA account with overdraft utility that is subject to eligibility requirements. Taking an ExtraCash™ advance will make your account balance negative. Express delivery fees apply to instant transfers. See the ExtraCash™ Account Agreement for more details.

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