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5 Things You Should Know About Business Loans

After working for companies and in corporate settings under the direction of someone else for multiple years, many people often get the inclination to open their own business. While this can be a very rewarding worthwhile practice, often times it can be financially impossible.Enter business loans. Business loans can help you get the start you need so that your new business venture can get off the ground. This said, business loans are not a “get out of jail free” solution, as they come with both pros and cons. Here are five things that anyone who is thinking about applying for a business loan should think about.CREDIT MATTERSAnyone who is thinking about applying for a business loan better be sure that their credit is in good standing. Business loans are often for large amounts of money, and no bank or lender is going to take a chance with someone whose credit score is less than admirable. Before applying for a loan, make sure that you have good credit, and do all that you can to improve inadequate credit if you find yourself in that boat.INTEREST HAPPENSNo matter where you acquire a business loan from, you are almost always going to have to pay interest. This can occasionally be small, but more often than not is quite sizable. Many people take loans without caring about the interest, but it adds up quickly and can ruin your business down the road. Always try to get the lowest interest rate possible when applying for a loan.SHOP AROUNDOn that note, it is important not to jump into the first loan that you are offered. Shopping around for loans can save you thousands of dollars in interest and will also give you an idea of how you stand with lenders. Be sure to go to at least five lenders before choosing the right loan for you.NEVER MISS A PAYMENTWhen it comes time to make payments on your loan, be sure that you never miss a payment. Missing payments can result in many things, most often an increase in interest. This can be incredibly damaging to a fledgling business.KNOW YOUR LENDERIt is important to have a personal relationship with the bank or person that is lending you money. Spend some time getting to know them so that you feel comfortable the entire way through the process.

Getting a Commercial Business Loan the Smart Way

Ever walked into a bank requesting a commercial business loan? Wouldn’t it have been nice to know ahead of time what your options were and how to qualify?In fact, being on the same page with the lender only helps the loan process to go more smoothly. When you go about getting commercial loans the right way, you can get exactly what you want and need.Let’s consider first things first. It’s important to know what constitutes a commercial business loan. Even though bankers have their own definition, the answer ultimately depends on you. For example, ask yourself, “Do I need…- A loan to buy, refinance or renovate commercial property?- A loan secured by other assets such as inventory, receivables, or equipment?- An unsecured business loan?- A cash advance (which is actually not a loan at all)?- Or something altogether different?”An experienced commercial loan specialist is skilled at assessing the best loan product available to meet your needs.Let’s imagine that you need a loan to purchase, refinance, or renovate a commercial property. (By the way, examples of commercial property might be multi-family dwellings, retail storefronts, office buildings, warehouses and the like.)Would you be curious about the easiest and most cost effective way to finance the deal? You might want to know credit score requirements and the amount of down payment you’ll need to qualify.Just like with any other loan, you’d likely expect a loan process that begins with an application and ends with a closing. Would you be concerned about how to excel through each phase of the process? Here are some questions you might ask:Your Questions…1.) Where can I go to get my question answered?2.) Where should I look for commercial business loans?3.) Can I find someone who is willing to hold my hand throughout this complicated business loan process?Real Answers…1.) Where can I go to get my question answered?Most would choose to go first to their local bank that carries their deposits. Others might look to their financial planner or accountant for guidance.However, these sources are often limited in their ability to secure financing sources that match your specific situation.For example, the local bank may expect you to have perfect credit along with a significant amount of deposits. They may not offer commercial loans without personal guarantees or without pre-payment penalties.2.) Where should I look for commercial business loans?Conversely, an established loan specialist will have access to a large number of banks and non-bank lenders who are more flexible and are willing to compete for your business.You can expect your loan officer to be able to point you in the right direction on where is the best place to apply based on your specific circumstance.3.) Finally, can I find someone who will be willing to hold my hand throughout this complicated business loan process?Yes, Indeed! Talk to your commercial business loan specialist. He or she will know which lenders…

Do NOT require perfect credit scores
Require less documentation
Close fast
And more
In fact, they’ll likely encourage you to get all your documentation together before ever approaching a lender. That way you’ll be in a position to know up front if you qualify. In essence, you’ll greatly decrease the stress of worrying about being turned down.A considerate loan officer will take the time to answer your questions and communicate with you throughout every phase of the loan process. Work with a good one and you’ll be prepared, confident, and most likely, approved.

What to Do If Your Business Loan is Approved

Your business loan is approved. Congratulations! It’s one of the most exciting phone calls you can receive as a business owner. It means that your business has received the financing that you’ve desired for opening your new business or expanding your existing business. Obviously, a celebration is in order! However, before popping open that bottle of champagne and proposing a toast, remember a few key rules before signing on the dotted line and picking up your check.- Thoroughly review all loan documents, and understand what they mean before you sign and accept the loan when your business loan is approved.If you don’t understand something on the loan documents when your business loan is approved, ask the lender to explain. If you feel that the explanation was not clear, ask for further explanation, or ask that you receive a copy of the paperwork to take with you so that you can review, read, and research. Consult your attorney or accountant if you have questions.- Return all required documents to the lender on time when your business loan is approved.When your business loan is approved, there will be a number of documents and required paperwork that the lender will need before you can close on the loan. Your proposal and ideas were obviously impressive enough to the lender for them to them to tell you that your business loan is approved. Keep up that good impression that the lender has of you by promptly responding to requests for additional documents, information, and credit references. Once your business loan is approved and your money is in your account, you’re your time and review your business’ situation with care.- Turn to your business plan.Review the goals and objectives of your business, and review the information that you gave to the lender. The lender was impressed enough to offer you the money for your business – impressed enough that your business loan was approved. Refresh your memory regarding your business. Read your business plan weekly to keep these ideas continuously in your mind so that you can stay focused. Remind yourself daily why your business loan is approved.- Turn to your loan proposal.Yes, turn to your loan proposal. It seems odd to consider the loan proposal now that your business loan is approved, and now that the money is in hand. However, recall the reasons why you wrote the loan proposal and why you applied for the loan. The loan proposal served the purpose of demonstrating to the lender that you are a trustworthy, business-minded, energetic, responsible individual with a great idea for your business. The proposal also stated the items that would be purchased with the money. Review the ideas behind obtaining the loan. Keep your self-esteem levels high, and work only to succeed. Purchase only the items listed in the loan proposal, and use the money for nothing else when your business loan is approved. To find business success, stick to your initial goals for the loan, and maintain financial control of the money. Remember, you have not won the lottery. This money needs to be repaid in a timely manner.Additionally, lender communications are very important, and much appreciated by the lender, when your business loan is approved.- Maintain close contact with the loan officer when your business loan is approved.Before you close on the loan, keep in touch with the loan officer to let that person know of your progress in gathering your final information needed to close. After closing, check in periodically with the loan officer to fill him or her in on how things are going with your business. When your business loan is approved, the lender has a vested interest in both your personal and business success, and will appreciate your efforts in keeping communications open by offering current information about your business. Keeping the line of communication open will allow you to possibly take advantage of the lender’s other services, which may be needed by your business down the road.- Communicate any business problems to the lender immediately.Lenders don’t like surprises, particularly if it involves bad news. Be honest, and if you’ve run into a snag, inform the lender before anyone else. If you prosper, the bank will prosper. If you fail, the bank fails. By being open and honest if something doesn’t work out after your business loan is approved, the lender may be able to offer solutions or assistance to help you resolve your problems and get back on track. Hiding the problems, or worse yet, ignoring the problems or becoming elusive will only make the lender leery of you and your business, and may jeopardize your credit scores, or worse, your reputation as a business owner.