As a small business owner, just getting through the application process for a small business loan is a significant accomplishment. Although the task may seem complicated and frustrating at times, the experience will also help you learn and grow as you go through the process.
There are specific steps to follow such as making the decision to apply for a loan, seeking financing, to meeting all the requirements and putting everything together to complete a small business loan application. To make the process painless and hasslefree, we will show you how to prepare both practically and mentally before applying. Follow these tips so you can get the best small business loan in the most stress-free way possible.
Make sure that you know and understand all of your options before you even attempt the small business loan application process. You should also determine if you are in need of financing. If the answer is yes, you should also ask yourself if a term loan is a good choice for your industry and stage of business development.
Small business loans and of business credit cards are just two examples of many forms of small business financing that is available. Other types include angel investment and invoice financing or factoring. You should take the time to learn what types of financing options are available to you and learn the pros and cons of each of them. This way you will be able to narrow down the most appropriate options for you and have a better idea of what to expect.
If you’re ready to move forward with a small business loan, there are two factors that you must have a firm grasp on which is your credit and your use case. When you have this knowledge readily available, you will be well prepared to complete a small business loan application successfully.
Take a Close Look at Your Credit
Credit rules above anything else when it comes to small business loans. The reason why lenders take your credit score so seriously is that it is a track record showing your ability to pay back what you borrow. Lenders want to be well assured that they can trust you with their money. As a result, is very important to understand your credit score because the score number that represents you indicates your financial reputation.
When it comes to small business loans, your personal credit score and business credit score are critical indicators for lenders when deciding whether to approve your application. These scores also affect the terms and conditions of the loan. However, some lenders look beyond credit scores and instead go beyond personal and business credit scores to analyze loan applications. Nevertheless, it is essential for you to understand your personal and business credit scores as well as know how to improve these important numbers.
Your Business Credit Score
One problem that many business owners have, especially when starting a new venture, is mixing their personal and business finances together. The problem with mixing accounts is that it can cause a lot of frustration problems comes time to apply for a small business loan or file for yearly income taxes. You should give yourself a chance to build a credit history by establishing a business account.
By doing so, you will also save yourself some damage control by preventing personal issues from affecting your business credit score. Vice versa, if your business happens to fail, your personal credit score will not be affected since you had the foresight not to overlap personal and business accounts. Make sure to protect yourself and avoid potential headaches in the future by separating personal and business accounts.
From the first time you conduct actual business, you are building a business credit report. You may be wondering how does this credit report translate into a score. Different companies calculate scores slightly differently using different criteria to determine the score.
There are three, scoring systems used by Dun & Bradstreet, Equifax, and Experian. All three of these agencies come up with three digits using a different scale. The Dun & Bradstreet PAYDEX score is derived solely on your payment history. Equifax and Experian also take collection agency data, legal filings, and public records into consideration. To maintain an excellent business credit report and keep a healthy score in each system, you must always make sure to pay your bills on time.
Your Personal Credit Score Also Matters
Even if you have established an outstanding business credit score, your personal credit score is just as important to lenders of small business loans. The reason is that your personal creditworthiness matters in business relationships and what you do in your personal time can affect your business.
Your personal credit score is a direct reflection of how often you pay your bills on time. The better your score is, the higher your chances are to receive the small business loan you want.
Improve Your Credit Score Before Applying
To improve your chances for small business loan approval, it is important to access the information credit bureaus have on you and access to this information is free thanks to the Fair Credit Reporting Act. This is a massive step for preparing for a small business loan and provides the information you need to improve your score by looking for errors, requesting for corrections, diversifying your credit mix, keeping your balances down. There are also many other techniques that can work in your favor to improve your credit score.
Study Your Financials
Your financial statements also say a lot about how you run your business, and you will need an accountant to prepare the following statements for your small business loan application:
– Balance Sheet
– Income Statement
– Cash Flow Statement
Once you have your financial statements prepared, you can determine what are your primary costs, if you are making money, and if your business is profitable. You will also have a clear understanding of how a small business loan will help improve your business by looking at the hard numbers.
Go for the Loan
Once you have made a clear analysis of your business, your credit, and your financials, you are now prepared to apply for a small business loan. With all this information on hand, preparing the paperwork will be quite easy since you have the knowledge and necessary documents to complete a small business loan application completely and successfully.