Most business entrepreneurs choose to fund their startups through their own cash or savings. While this approach works well for many business owners, there will come a time when additional capital is required from the outside. With alternative lending options constantly evolving, small business owners are finding it easier and easier to evaluate what each lender is offering them (pricing, rates, terms, etc.). Ultimately, these non-bank lenders offer more choices.
While it is fairly easy to find a list of alternative lending options for a small business, knowing what to consider while evaluating those lenders is not always as transparent. To set your business up for success you have to find the right option. Consider the following list of top things to keep in mind as you evaluate lenders:
Every small business needs and benefits from comprehensive support. Without it, it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to achieve financial success. Before you start talking seriously with any lender, thoroughly research and assess all of your options; this will allow you to prioritize the lenders that offer a full array of offerings to your small business.
When comparing lenders, make sure that their history of serving small businesses is at the top of your list of “things to look for”. They should have a strong track record of working with small business owners; thus, demonstrating their commitment at every stage (from moment of approval to managing the credit). Their commitment should also be evident in how easy it is to contact them, whether it be online, by phone or in person.
Speed and Convenience
As the world we live in continues to become busier and more demanding, small business owners are finding themselves even more strapped for time. This has quickly pushed “speed” to the top of the list of requirements. Along with convenience, the time in which it takes to be funded is a big priority. More and more alternative lenders are offering fast application processes and quick response times. With First American Merchant, for example, merchants hear back in as little as 72 hours upon submitting an application. In addition, the application process is known for being fast, simple and hassle-free – taking only a few minutes to complete and submit. Ultimately, the lender you choose should offer a blend of speed and convenience that works for your small business’ needs.
Be wary of any lender that does not list its terms and pricing upfront. Take a little extra time to ensure that you fully understand how much each loan option will cost, the frequency of payments and any and all additional fees. Write down the interest rate and how much you will owe each payment period. Then compare all of your options to make sure you are choosing the product that best fits your financial needs.
Are you currently seeking a lending option that fits this criteria? Before you make a decision, be sure to add First American Merchant to your list of options. From restaurant financing to boutique business loans, you will find an option that works for your unique needs. To learn more about our business funding options and/or how to submit an application, contact our expert team today.