Banks, credit unions, and venture capitalists had been the behemoth of the business-loans landscape for centuries. Things have changed! Today, the best small business lenders aren’t traditional banks or credit unions. These have a tradition of turning away small business owners or treating them to bureaucratic paperwork and long application and lending processes.
Online business lenders are the best – and for good reasons. For instance, some great lenders have an easy-to-use business loan calculator, a simple application, a faster funding process, the best loan terms, and fewer loan fees.
What Makes The Best Business Lender?
With so many online lenders out there, finding the best business lender for a small business loan can feel like a full-time job on its own before you open your business doors to your customers. Here is what you should look for to sift the best online lender for your small business.
A lending business that isn’t accredited points to a cartel of scammers. Genuine lenders must be registered with state agencies, and you can easily establish that by checking with your state’s Attorney general office. Still, visit the Better Business Bureau website to see whether the lender has any accolades there. Best business lenders score A to A+ on the BBB site.
Also, research about the company online. All genuine lenders have solid websites and social media presence.
A Business Loan Calculator
Transparency is the word of the game when it comes to finding the best lender. That’s what you get with a business loan calculator. It helps you calculate the cost of your loan and estimate the monthly payments upfront even before you begin the application process. Be wary of lenders who don’t provide business loan calculators on their websites.
Easy Application Process
This is where online lenders beat traditional financing institutions hands down. The best online lenders have a simple application process that takes only about 15 minutes. And the good thing is, you can do it from the comfort of your house or premises without the need to close your doors.
Your takeaway: Work with business lenders who require little documentation and won’t treat you to a bureaucratic application process.
Top business leaders don’t just provide a business loan calculator. After you are fully aware of your loan costs and repayments, they take you through a pre-application process to see whether you qualify for the amount you want. All without affecting your credit score!
The best business lender is the one who has your back and can help you respond to business emergencies with a faster funding process.
Say your machine breaks down, or you are in a cash crunch and need money quickly to keep business operations afloat. You don’t have time to wait for a long time. You need cash quickly to get back to work. Right?
That’s what you get from a top business lender. While banks may take weeks to months to process your loan, online lenders provide faster funding, often within 24 hours or less.
Flexible Loan Products and Terms
Work with lenders who offer flexible loan terms to make the lending and repayment process easy and hassle-free. Banks will require you to have an excellent credit score, years of doing business, and collateral to secure the loan. How can you have all that if you are just getting started or have been into business for only a few years?
The best online small business lenders offer different types of flexible loan products like business cash advances, financing machinery, unsecured loans, short-term business loans, invoice factoring, business lines of credit, and working capital loans. The good part is, they will receive you when banks turn you away for lack of collateral, bad credit, or for having no credit history.
Lastly, take your time to comparison-shop lenders based on all the factors discussed above. Look at their average interest rates, repayment periods, and how long their term loans are.
Choose lenders that offer the best interest rates, and allow you to choose how long you want to repay your loan. Top online lenders have a flexible repayment period of 24 to 60 months!