Payday Loans in California

At a Glance
  • Nickname: The Golden State
  • Population: 39.56 million
  • Capital: Sacramento
  • Website:

While California may be home to some America’s richest and most famous people, the cost of living in the Golden State is undeniably high for many of its residents. The state had a poverty rate of 13.3% in 2017, and the suggested yearly income to live in the capital city of Sacramento is $125,400. In San Diego, that number is even higher: $135,648. Want to live comfortably in Los Angeles? You’ll need to make $141,408 a year. And then there’s San Francisco—at an average annual income of $153,552.

Average Credit Card Debt and Median Household Income in California vs. the U.S.
Average Credit Card Debt (Q1 2019)
Median Household Income (2018)

Payday Loans in California

In California, the typical payday loan has a term of 2 weeks and an APR of 459%.

According to the California Department of Business Oversight (DBO), in 2015, there were nearly 43% more Californians (462,334) who borrowed ten or more payday loans than there were customers who only borrowed one (323,870). In that same year, 64% of payday loan fees were generated by customers who took out seven or more payday loans. In fact, the DBO found that repeat payday loan transactions make up about 76% of the total number of payday loans in 2015 and that 47% of these were made on the same day that the previous transactions ended.

The DBO has also reported that payday loan storefronts (as of March 2016) tended to be more prevalent in poverty-stricken areas. They also found that areas with more payday loan storefronts were more highly represented by blacks and Latinos (and less represented by whites).

An increasing number of seniors in California are taking out payday loans. The DBO indicates that “Californians 62 and older accounted for 23.4% of the 2016 total, and they took out nearly 2.7 million loans, a nearly three-fold increase from the previous year.”

Consumer Protection in California

If you have been victimized by a lender in California, contact the California Department of Business Oversight (DBO) by calling 1-866-275-2677 to file a complaint. You can also complete the DBO’s complaint form online.

The California Department of Business Oversight (DBO) information:

  • Address: Financial Services Division 1515 K Street, Suite 200 Sacramento, CA 95814
  • Phone: (866) 275-2677
  • Website:

Guides to Payday Loans in California Cities

Check out these guides to the following cities in California:

Anaheim | Bakersfield | Chico | Fresno | Los Angeles | Modesto | Oakland | Redding | Riverside | Sacramento | San Diego | San Francisco | San Jose | Santa Barbara | Stockton