Where to Get Emergency Loans in Kenya

Simon Mwangi

Today, I will show you where to get emergency loans in Kenya. I know there comes a time when we need quick money, but you can find any.

Well, worry no more as Financial technology has come to save our lives. But first, let me help you understand the meaning of emergency loans in Kenya.

Emergency loans are quick or urgent money gotten in a short period to satisfy an immediate need.

Before the emergence of financial technology, traditional banking systems would take days or even weeks to get a loan.

However, that seems to have ended with introducing loan apps where you get money on the go.

What are Emergency Loans in Kenya, and how do they work?

Quick loans in Kenya are relatively short-term unsecured personal loans that can be approved or granted rapidly to the borrower. A quick loan has a fast approval process which means you may receive the funds you need within 3 minutes or 5 minutes.

You can use these fast loans for any purpose, such as paying bills, medical emergencies, debt consolidation, and generally for consumption purposes.

They are unsecured, so no collateral is needed to guarantee the loan, making them very convenient.

Where to get emergency loans in Kenya

There are several apps where you can get emergency loans in Kenya in an urgent need.

1. Tala App

Tala is one of the first loan apps to be established. It was formerly known as Mkopo Rahisi. The app is available on all Android smartphones, and anyone can apply for and get instant loans.

To set up the Tala app, go to the google play store, and download and install the app.

How to download Tala

  • Visit Google Play Store.  
  • Download the app and wait till it installs on your phone automatically.
  • Once installed, get ready to start using Tala Loan App.

The app has a limit of up to Ksh 50,000

2. KCB M-Pesa

KCB-Mpesa is a mobile application for M-Pesa users where you can access emergency loans in Kenya. Customers who use M-Pesa services can only access these services.

To get started
  • Go to the M-Pesa menu
  • Click on Loans & Savings
  • Select KCB M-PESA
  • Select loan > Request Loan > Enter Amount
  • Enter KCB M-PESA PIN the OK

3. Branch

Just like Tala, Branch is a financial credit service through an app. It gives the user the flexibility to access instant loans anytime, anywhere.

The branch app is available for download on the google play store

According to the app’s statistics, they have about 3 million users, over 15 million mobile loans issued, and over 300 million dollars disbursed.

To download Branch, Go to google play and Click on install to download the app.

Once installed, fill in the details required to start using Branch.

Related: List of Mobile Loan Apps in Kenya 2022

4. Mshwari

Mshwari is a product of the Commercial Bank of Africa in partnership with Safaricom.

The product allows you to save and borrow money through mobile phones to earn interest as you save.

To qualify for a Mshwari loan, all you need is to be an M-PESA subscriber for six months, save on M-Shwari and actively use other Safaricom services such as voice, data, and M-PESA.

5. M-Coop Cash

M-Coop Cash is a loan app that enables the co-operative bank of Kenya customers to access bank services, including emergency loans.

It gives customers access to account balances and transfers cash from their MCO-op cash account to Mpesa, Airtel.

It also allows the bank customers to purchase airtime from the them-coop cash account, among other services.

With MCOOP Cash App, you can apply for up to 200,000 shillings of 1.5 times your net salary.

6. Traditional Banks

Commercial banks are the institution where we all keep and deposit our money. Banks have a higher reputation, especially in most countries.

They carry out lending activities to both individuals and institutions.

To get a service from the bank could be a loan, or you want to deposit, you must open a bank account that you will use for all your activities.

Banks have different types of loans, including

  • Salary advance loans – for short notice or emergencies
  • fixed asset loans – for buying assets where the asset itself is collateral
  • factoring loans – loans based on money owed to your business by customers
  • hire purchase loans – for long-term purchase of assets such as vehicles or machinery

However, as much as we all run to the bank to borrow loans, we ought to know some pros and cons of borrowing from these institutions.


  • Banks give you a flexible way of paying your loan.
  • The interest rate is not too high compared with other emergency loan lenders.
  • You can always secure your loan with whatever asset you may be your land, home, or even business.


  • Customers may sometimes not pay on time hence causing cash-flow problems.
  • In some cases, you put valuable possession as security for the loan borrowed.
  • There may be a charge if you want to repay the loan before the end of the loan term, especially if the interest rate on the loan is fixed.

7. Saccos

Saccos come in handy when you need emergency loans in Kenya. It is a form of a financial institution where people save and borrow money together.

In most cases, they are formed by people who work together, Church members, corporate, parastatal, or a community with a common goal.

To join a Sacco, you are required to be a member, and you will be required to save some amount of money every month.

Saccos are best when it comes to savings. They then use the savings to lend to their members.

When you need an emergency loan, you approach the Sacco, and they can give you up to three times your savings.

You can also use the savings for various investments like buying lands, houses, etc.

In Kenya, we have some known Saccos, including Stima Sacco, Waumini Sacco, Harambee Sacco, and Safaricom Sacco.


  • The more you save, the more you get, especially when you require an emergency loan.
  • The money you save never gets lost once you leave the Sacco. You have given all your money.
  •  Saccos give members chances to own properties.
  • Saccos allow members to use their dividends to pay back the loans
  • You earn dividends from your money.
  • You can also use your dividends to increase your shares.

Other places to get Emergency Loans in Kenya


  • Without members, there is no Sacco
  • Due to limited capital, they may be forced to employ unqualified professionals.

8. Shylock

A Shylock is an individual money lender or Creditor and, in most cases, known to be ruthless with ridiculous interest rates.

There are benefits and drawbacks to working with individual lenders.


  • Loans are immediate
  • You can get them at your own convenient time.


  • High-interest rates
  • There are no regulations put in place
  • Most of these lenders operate illegally with no documentation
  • Loans are on lender terms. The debtor is not given a chance to negotiate.

9. Salary Advance

This salary advance form offers quick loans in Kenya within your payment cycle.

It usually has an affordable interest rate if you settle the loan on time (usually three months).

These loans are a great way to deal with a cash-flow nightmare when the going gets rough, especially if you’re offered an interest-free month.

10. Pawnbroker

A pawnbroker can be seen as another form of a loan shark, but they are slightly more professional.

They will offer you short-term loans at an interest rate but need your items as collateral.

The pawnbroker will hold onto them for some time and give you the money you need, but they’ll also charge very high-interest rates on the loan because you are not getting an official bank to back up the repayment.

You, however, risk losing the property if you are unable to repay the loan within the agreed timeframe.

11. Sell personal items.

In cases where you have many personal items that are very valuable, you might consider selling them to receive the money you need.

However, if the value of these items is low and does not cover your needs, you might end up with negative equity- meaning that despite having received the loan money, your expenses will still be higher than the value of your items.

12. Friends and Family Loans

A loan from your family or friend is a common type of quick loan in Kenya that many people agree to pay back after a specific time because they are usually considered a form of charity from the person lending you the money.

In most cases, if you borrow money from friends or family members, you might have to pay a high level of interest depending on how much you borrow and your repayment period.

You must repay the money before the end of the agreed repayment term because if not, it will be considered a bad debt from your side, which may impact your relationships with those people.

It would help if you avoided this option unless your friend or relative has enough assets to lend you the money. It is more likely that they will not be able to help you, and you’d have to pay it back eventually.

In Summary

The list provided above is a great starting point for beginners looking to find quick or emergency loans in Kenya.

However, it would be best to take the time to do your research and talk with professionals before taking out any loan because each one has its own set of pros and cons depending on your needs.

While considering taking emergency loans in Kenya, it is essential to learn about the existing ones and learn their terms and conditions; from there, you get to choose which one will favor you most.

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As a freelance writer with a background in banking and accounting, Simon has the financial know-how to produce quality content on various topics. His experience gives him a strong foundation in understanding complex financial concepts and communicating them in an easy-to-understand way.
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