Cash advance apps

Brigit 2024 Review: Paycheck Advances

Brigit is an app that offers cash advances up to $250 plus budgeting and credit-building features — but charges a monthly fee.
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Written by Annie Millerbernd
Assistant Assigning Editor
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Edited by Kim Lowe
Lead Assigning Editor
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Brigit
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Affordability

Structure

Transparency

Underwriting and consumer protections

Customer experience


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Brigit’s Instant Cash feature offers small advances to consumers with sufficient banking history. The app tries to ensure users can repay the amount they borrow and charges low fees for fast funding. Unlike most other cash advance apps, Brigit does not request tips.

Users must pay a monthly $9.99 subscription fee under the app’s “Plus” plan to get the advance — the highest mandatory fee among loan apps — but it may be worth the price if you use Brigit’s other tools.

Pros

Does not request tips.

Low fast-funding fee.

Tries not to cause an overdraft fee.

Budgeting and credit-building features.

Cons

Charges a monthly subscription fee.

Smaller advances than some competitors.

Brigit cash advance basics: Amounts, fees and funding time

How much can I borrow from Brigit?

  • $50 to $250.

What fees does Brigit charge?

  • Monthly subscription fee: $9.99 or $14.99.

  • Optional fast-funding fee: $0.99 to $3.99.

How do you repay Brigit?

  • Funds are withdrawn from your bank account on the date Brigit determines to be your next payday.

How long does it take to get a cash advance from Brigit?

  • After approval, Brigit says it can take up to three days to receive the funds. However, users can pay a fee to get funds in 20 minutes.

A word of caution: Users of cash advance apps, including Brigit, may risk becoming dependent on loans to cover regular expenses — a cycle of debt that’s difficult to break. It’s a good idea to consider affordable alternatives before getting an advance from Brigit.

Who Brigit is best for

  • Consumers who need to cover an emergency expense and don't regularly spend more than they earn.

  • Users with an active checking account that receives regular deposits.

  • Consumers who get value from credit-building and budgeting features.

What you need for a Brigit advance

Like other cash advance apps, Brigit determines eligibility for Instant Cash by reviewing your linked bank account.

Eligible accounts must have:

  • At least 60 days of activity.

  • A balance greater than $0.

  • Money leftover at the end of the day on payday.

  • Three recurring deposits from the same source, like an employer.

When the app reviews your account, it gives you a score from 0 to 100. You need a score of 40 or higher to qualify for an advance. Users can see their scores.

Here’s what the app is looking for when it scores users:

  • Bank account health: Your average balance, any bank fees, length of account history and usage.

  • Earnings profile: The number of same-size deposits from the same source.

  • Spending behavior: Monthly expenses and savings.

If you don’t qualify, Brigit will tell you how to improve your score.

How to get a Brigit cash advance: Step-by-step instructions

After downloading the Brigit app from an app store, here are the steps to get an advance:

  1. Set up an account with the app and connect your bank account.

  2. Brigit reviews your connected account and gives you a score that determines if you qualify for an advance.

  3. If you qualify, you’ll become a paying subscriber to use the cash advance feature.

  4. Request an advance. Brigit shows you the advance amount and gives you the option to pay a fee for faster funding. Users also confirm their repayment date before agreeing to take the advance.

  5. If you agree, the advance is sent to your bank account.

  6. You get a notification the day before payment is due.

  7. Brigit withdraws the advance amount from your account on the scheduled repayment date.

Frequently asked questions about Brigit

Can I change my Brigit Instant Cash due date?

Users can preview and adjust the repayment date before agreeing to get an advance, or they can request a deferral. Brigit provides an extension to new users; others earn one extension for every two consecutive advances they repay on time. Users can push the repayment date up to 16 days and hold up to three extension credits at a time.

Will Brigit’s Instant Cash cause an overdraft fee?

Brigit may cause an overdraft fee, but the company says it offers partial repayment options or a chance to reschedule the payment date for users with insufficient funds.

How do I contact Brigit’s customer service?

Users can get help via email, the contact form on Brigit’s website or in-app chat. It does not have a customer service phone number.

Is Brigit legit?

Brigit is a real company based in New York that has offered cash advances since 2019. The app has 4.7 stars across more than 170,000 reviews on Google Play and 4.8 stars across more than 275,000 reviews on the Apple app store.

Complaints from users on the Better Business Bureau and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau websites focus on unauthorized debits and the company’s credit-builder loan (more on that product below).

In 2023, the company settled with the Federal Trade Commission, which accused the app of misleading consumers about its cash advance product.

The FTC announced in November 2023 that Brigit agreed to settle a complaint that would require the app to pay $18 million in consumer refunds and stop deceptive marketing tactics. According to the FTC's complaint, Brigit’s app and advertisements for the app promise consumers instant cash advances up to $250 with no fee. In reality, the complaint says, the app charges a fee for instant funding, few consumers receive the full $250 advance amount, and the company makes it difficult for users with outstanding advances to cancel their subscriptions.

In an emailed statement, a Brigit spokesperson said the FTC’s claims were “factually inaccurate, misunderstand our business and go against everything we have worked so hard to build on behalf of our customers.” Specifically, Brigit denied it led consumers to believe they would receive the full $250 advance, noting that it provides “numerous disclaimers throughout the screen flow to apprise customers” the amount they may be eligible for. Brigit also said the FTC used old ads to argue that the app incorrectly advertised no-fee instant transfers, and that the company updated its advertisements once it began charging a fee in the spring of 2022.

Other Brigit features

Credit-builder loan

Brigit offers a “Premium” plan for $14.99 that includes a no-interest credit-builder loan. Here’s how it works:

  1. You apply for the credit-builder loan.

  2. If approved, Brigit holds a preset dollar amount in a savings account in your name for a preset number of months.

  3. You choose a dollar amount to save each month and Brigit reports your monthly contribution as an installment loan payment to the three major credit bureaus — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion.

  4. At the end of your loan term, Brigit reports the loan as paid in full and lets you access the savings you’ve built.

A credit-builder loan is one way for those with low credit scores or thin credit histories to show positive payment history, which can build your credit. The credit-builder loan is the main differentiator between Brigit’s Plus and Premium plans, so you’d effectively pay an extra $5.99 per month to use the credit-builder loan.

Compare other ways to build credit, including other credit-builder loans, to be sure Brigit’s option is right for you.

Overdraft protection

Paying subscribers who qualify for an advance can use the app’s Auto Advance feature, which deposits money into your bank account if it’s about to go negative. Because only one advance is allowed at a time, you have to repay an automatic advance before getting a new one.

Overdraft protection from an external app can be helpful but is unnecessary if your bank already offers it.

Budgeting assistance

Brigit’s Finance Helper is a free feature that helps users monitor their earnings and expenses, see upcoming bills and find ways to reduce monthly expenses.

Help finding cash and savings

The app’s free Earn & Save feature helps users find ways to earn money, including full- and part-time jobs and taking online surveys or playing games. The app also partners with companies that may offer savings on expenses like insurance or provide rewards like cash back.

A closer look at Brigit's star rating

Affordability: 2.5/4 stars

An affordable cash advance has low or no fees, caps tips and protects users from overdraft fees caused by the app’s withdrawals.

Structure: 3/4 stars

A well-structured app has a large enough maximum borrowing amount to meet users’ needs, can provide funds quickly without charging a fee and allows users repayment flexibility.

Transparency: 4/4 stars

A transparent cash advance app notifies users before withdrawals, discloses fees clearly to borrowers on their website or in the app and shows the total amount the user needs to repay before providing funds.

Underwriting and consumer protections: 3/4 stars

This category assesses how well an app helps borrowers avoid borrowing an advance that will overextend their finances. A consumer-first cash advance app reviews more than a couple months of borrowers’ expenses, requires regular bank account deposits and lets borrowers choose how much to borrow.

Customer experience: 3.5/4 stars

A well-rated cash advance app with multiple ways to contact customer service representatives and a thorough FAQ on its website will do well in this category.

Discretionary additions or deductions

Cash advance apps can earn a higher star rating by offering features that help borrowers build savings or credit. Apps’ star ratings are lowered if they are accused of engaging in deceptive or predatory practices by reputable sources.

Expert take on Brigit

"Brigit's cash advance is a good option if you feel certain that you'll use some of the other app features. If you frequently find yourself in a tight spot, an app that can loan you a small amount of money and help you budget and save could be worth $10 per month.

That said, if you're only looking for a cash advance, you may be able to find more affordable cash advances. Brigit used to be the go-to app if you wanted to know exactly how much you'd pay for the advance before you borrow, but since the company introduced a fast-funding fee, it comes down to pricing — and Brigit is on the high end."

Annie Millerbernd, Assistant Assigning Editor, Personal Loans

Explore more cash advance apps

Dave

3.0

NerdWallet rating 

Advance amounts

Up to $500.

Fees

  • Subscription fee: $1 per month.

  • Optional fast-funding fee: $3 to $25.

  • Optional tip: Up to 25% of the amount borrowed.

Repayment

Withdrawn from your bank account on the date Dave determines to be your next payday or the first Friday after you receive the advance.

Time to fund without express fee

Up to 3 business days.

Time to fund with express fee

Up to an hour.

Empower

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Advance amounts

$10 to $300 for first-time users. Returning customers may be approved for advances up to $350.

Fees

  • Subscription fee: $8 per month, or $0 if you opt out.

  • Optional fast-funding fee: $1 to $10.50.

  • Optional tip: Up to 20% per advance, capped each calendar year at your eligible advance amount.

Repayment

Withdrawn from your bank account on your predetermined due date.

Time to fund without express fee

One business day.

Time to fund with express fee

Within one hour.

Methodology

NerdWallet reviews and rates cash advance products from financial companies that provide cash advance apps. We collect over 24 data points from each company, verify the information with company representatives and compare the app with others that seek the same customer or offer a similar cash advance product. NerdWallet writers and editors conduct a full fact check and update annually, but also make updates throughout the year as necessary.

The maximum allowable rating for cash advance apps that we review is four stars. Our star ratings award points to cash advance apps that offer consumer-friendly features, including: caps on voluntary tips, protections from overdraft fees caused by app withdrawals, low cost of borrowing and an assessment of the user’s finances before providing an advance. The system also rewards points for features that a consumer seeking an advance would find useful, such as: fast funding without a fee, allowing users to borrow less than they were approved for and customer ratings. Additional points are awarded to apps that provide pathways to budgeting and saving, which are features that can help prevent a user from habitually reborrowing. We weigh these factors based on our assessment of which are the most important for consumers and how they impact consumers’ experiences.

NerdWallet does not receive compensation for our star ratings. Read more about our ratings methodologies for personal loans and our editorial guidelines.

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