Starting your own business can be a difficult but rewarding experience. While a solid business plan is essential for entrepreneurs, financing is one of the most important aspects for business success, but I’d like to point out the fact that getting loans for small business owner can be a difficult and time-consuming procedure, especially when the person or entity that requests the loan doesn’t have a good credit score.
While there is not a defined credit score you must have to secure a business loan, traditional lenders have a range of credit scores that they consider acceptable.
In this post, we break down some small business financing options and offer recommendations on how to finance your business.
Start-up capital for a small business is particularly hard to come by (most standard business loans require one or more years of operation), but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible.
Below are some ways to finance small businesses:
A venture capitalist is a person who invests in startups or supports small businesses that want to grow but don’t have the financial resources to do so. Venture capital is money invested in new businesses that are believed to have high-risk, high-growth potential.
Fast-growing companies with an exit strategy can earn tens of millions of dollars, which can be used to invest, network, and grow the business on a regular basis. A business that is viable and built with the future in mind has a good chance of attracting the support of venture capitalists.
An angel investor is a person who provides money to people who need money to run their businesses. Angel investors make financial investments in young companies in exchange for a profit. These investors have helped discover many well-known companies and continue to be a valuable source of capital for small businesses.
This is another excellent approach for new businesses to raise capital for their first operations. If your business needs less than $50,000 in funding and you can’t get a loan, credit cards can help. According to the US Small Business Administration, up to 65% of small businesses use credit cards regularly.
Credit cards are often effective in expanding cash flow. You should look for and use credit card benefits and rewards, such as balance transfer offers, 0% introductory rates, and cards that offer discounts on gas and office supplies, airline miles, or cash back, among other things.
If you handle it right, it can help you build a strong credit history for when your business needs financing later.
However, you should keep a close eye on your finances to avoid falling behind on payments, which could hurt your credit score. Be sure to use your card only for critical business purposes and keep your balance below 30% of your credit limit.
Traditional business loans have been replaced by online lenders, which have become increasingly popular. These platforms offer the benefit of speed, as a request takes around an hour to complete and the decision and associated cash can be issued in a matter of days. This strategy has been used by a large number of entrepreneurs to obtain financing for their businesses.
Most people who don’t qualify for credit cards, microloans, or other types of bank financing turn to their personal savings as their initial small business financing alternative. Before you go down this path, think about factors like what percentage of your own funds you should use.
Should you invest all your savings in your new company? Should you use half? To avoid losing your “rainy day shield”, you must be diligent with your business planning.
Using 401(k) or IRA assets to support a business acquisition can be dangerous; however, with the right technique, you can turn retirement money into capital for a new business and avoid taxes and early withdrawal penalties.
The advantage is that you can use your own money to finance the start-up or acquisition of a franchise. However, if the business goes bankrupt, you could lose the money you needed to pay for your retirement.
You can finance a new small business with any of the following small business financing sources:
The SBA Microloan Program, which was established to make start-up business capital more accessible to women, minorities and veterans, now partners with community-based nonprofit middle-market lenders to provide small business borrowers between $500 and $50,000.
Traditional financing with these ideal rates and durations is rarely, if ever, accessible to start-ups outside of this SBA-subsidized program, with interest rates ranging from 8% to 13% and terms no longer than six years.
Additionally, SBA microloan lenders are unique in that they are selected by the Small Business Administration to work as mentors and face-to-face lenders with business entrepreneurs. (This is just one of the many benefits of SBA loans.) Microloan providers, in this role, serve not only as a source of money for small business start-ups, but also as advisers, offering advice on business management, marketing, and finances to ensure the long-term success of borrowers. Having said that, all of those great benefits come with a lot of competition.
Consider equipment financing as the best option to finance your business if you need initial cash to purchase equipment.
Equipment loans will be easier to qualify for, even if you don’t have much business experience, because the equipment you buy will act as collateral for the cash you use to buy it.
While many equipment lenders will have a minimum time in the company’s criteria, a significant number will not.