A merchant cash advance is a facility where a financing company advances a business cash, almost like a loan. However, unlike a loan, you give the company a percentage of your daily debit and credit card sales, plus a small fee. For people with a poor credit score, this is a great way to get business financing quickly and without having to provide collateral. This facility, as with any other credit facilities has the following advantages and disadvantages.
1. You can access funds quickly; this can take under two days and same day approval is not uncommon.
2. They have an easy approval process that does not bury you in processes and paperwork.
3. Bad credit is accepted, meaning that people with bad credit scores are still eligible to apply and get funds.
4. Because of its ease and amounts, this facility is suitable for a wide range of business needs.
5. You do not have to put up collateral which is advantageous to people with none; people with joint or shared assets and to people who do not want to put their assets as security for a loan.
6. You repay lesser amounts in slower weeks, unlike for a typical loan where you have to make stipulated payments or pay penalties.
1. As with loans that do not require collateral or good credit scores, this facility charges higher fees. The high fees are put in place because such borrowers are considered to be risky.
2. When you want to change service merchants, the process is not flexible.
3. For a business, the daily deduction of credit card receipts reduces the business’ cash flow.
Who Can Qualify For A MCA?
As with most facilities, there are qualifying factors that you must meet to be considered for this facility. While low credit score, lack of collateral and limited business histories can lock you out most credit facilities, not so with an MCA.
Merchant Cash Advance providers are less stringent, making it easier for most businesses to qualify. However, looking at statistics of most clients whose loans were approved, the following stand out:
Most approved businesses had over $180,000 in revenue.
A credit score of 550.
Businesses that had operated for at least two years.
As long as your business enjoys a significant amount of credit card payments, you can easily apply and be approved for this financing option. This money can be used for business expenses such as:
• Purchasing inventory.
• Working capital.
• To settle business debt.
• To sort out unexpected and emergency business payments.
The Application Process
MCA applications are almost always online and have high turnaround time as well. For most applications, there is a high likelihood of your loan being approved on the same day you make an application.
Here are the documents will need for your application:
A copy of driver’s license.
A voided business check.
A bank statement and credit score report.
Credit card processing statements.Because payment is dependent on credit care payment volumes, companies will evaluate your credit card statements. This is to ascertain that you have enough volumes to support your cash request.
Business tax return records.
What Is The Real Cost Of An MCA?
Note, however, that fast loan disbursements are expensive. MCA’s fit into the rule. While its application is fast and easy, an MCA comes with some of the highest costs among facilities in the market.
With this in mind, be sure that you are able to repay quickly without further reducing your cash flow to the point of crippling your business. It is also advisable to shop around for other types of loans before settling on an MCA. In short, this should be a last resort option.
An MCA has a repayment duration of 8 to 9 months. Depending on your business, you can take a loan with a 4 to 18-month repayment duration. You can also opt to pay a higher percentage of your credit card payments. This will clear the loan sooner, but will leave you with more severe cash flow deficits.
Be conscious of this when settling on a repayment duration and payment plan. If you go too high, you might be unable to run normal business operations leaving your business in even more financial trouble.
It is important to evaluate and to do a thorough cost-benefit analysis before applying for a Merchant Cash Advance. Because it’s an expensive facility, only take it out if it’s your business’s lifeline, you can make payments quickly without affecting operations and you have unsuccessfully exhausted other cheaper options.