In Advance Business Loans and Merchant Cash Advance
As a business owner, there are likely to be times when you need access to cash for emergencies, to cover inventory expenses, or to ramp up your operations. Depending on your situation, you and your company may not qualify for a traditional loan for any number of reasons. Luckily in times like this, there are other options to get the funding you need to stay competitive. One of these options is called a Merchant Cash Advance.
Unlike conventional business loans that can take weeks or months to get approved, Merchant Cash Advance Providers work quickly to process your loan application. In some cases, business applicants can access the funds from an MCA in as short as a couple of business days.
A merchant cash advance isn’t the right solution for all situations. However, it can offer a lot of benefits to merchants who are managing growth or getting ready for a busy season.
Common Questions About Merchant Cash Advance Services
Some of the most common questions regarding merchant cash advance services are straightforward. You might wonder if you meet the requirements to qualify for a merchant cash advance. And if you do, what is the best way to find an MCA provider. Our finance specialists have scoured the internet and learned everything there is to know about this convenient financial service to help you make an informed decision.
Is An MCA Considered A Business Loan?
While you might be tempted to think that a merchant cash advance is the same as a traditional business loan, this assumption is not accurate. A merchant cash advance is more accurately, a sales agreement. The merchant who takes out an MCA agrees to ‘sell’ the future revenue of the company at a discount to the merchant cash advance company.
Other ways that a merchant cash advance differs from a traditional loan is the fact that companies who offer this financial service collect fees using factoring or a buy rate. This rate gets determined by multiplying the factor rate by the amount of money borrowed.
For instance, let’s say you are requesting an MCA of $10k and a factoring rate of 1.5%. The total amount you would need to repay the merchant cash advance issuer is $15K — fees and factoring equal $5K or 50% of the capital that was originally advanced.
Merchant cash advance fees can vary between 1.09 to as high as 2. However, with a variety of MCA providers available, there is a possibility that you can find MCA providers with higher or lower fees. Other factors that can raise the costs of this service could include origination charges, as well as management and closing fees, on top of the factoring fees.
Advance providers collect payments on the MCA by deducting a percentage of your debit and credit card sales from your business bank account daily. Repayment of the loan can fluctuate based on your sales receipts. Although there is no set repayment date, most MCA’s require they are paid back within 18 months.
Is My Business Eligible For A Merchant Cash Advance?
Merchant cash advances are an alternative funding option for companies that don’t qualify for conventional business loan products. In many cases, merchant cash advance providers determine eligibility using your current cash flow. Companies with a steady and consistent cash flow could qualify for a cash advance regardless of your credit score or the length of time you’ve been in business.
Even with fewer restrictions, many merchant cash advance providers require business borrowers to fit a specific profile. Generally, business owners seeking an MCA should have a minimum credit score of 500. Further, they should be able to verify consistent cash flow and own a company at least three months old.
Due to the way MCA’s collect payments on advance services, companies with inconsistent cash flow may not qualify for this product. Because payments get collected from the business bank account based on credit and debit card receipts, transaction volume plays a significant role to qualify.
The MCA will want to ensure that your company has the financial capacity and daily credit card sales to support repayment of the advance. Since fees get automatically deducted from your business bank account, you want to be sure your account always has enough cash to cover these withdrawals and avoid possible overdraft situations.
Weighing Your Options
Like all financial products and services, it is always in your best interest to weigh all of the options that are available to you. Regardless of which financial product or service you decide is right for your situation, be sure to read the fine print that outlines the terms and conditions of service first. By doing so, you are taking steps to avoid confusion or misunderstandings on the terms later.