Small businesses are an extremely important part of the U.S. job market. There are about 28 million small businesses that account for nearly 55% of all U.S. sales. Small businesses don’t have those huge bank accounts to fall back on like big businesses do, so it makes sense that, aside from a lack of experience, insufficient capitol is the main reason small businesses fail, according to the SBA. That is why loans are very important.
Small business lending is not something to be taken lightly. If you have a promising company and you need a small business loan, then you might not want to wait around with loans from big banks. It would be wise to pay a little more interest on unsecured business loans, and get the money faster without waiting weeks at a bank to see if you apply. Be careful, however, if you need a loan fast, you have to think smart. Here are a few tips:
- Research — You have to be careful not to jump into business with just anyone. Someone may cold call you and say they’re a “funding expert” but chances are they are not concerned with your business at all. You need responsible lending, so spend time researching the best options available. There is a “Loans and Grants Search Tool” that the SBA offers that helps small businesses find exactly what they’re looking for.
- Work With Direct Lenders — Again, your small business probably doesn’t have the financing to take chances with large banks and brokers. It’s better to work directly with lenders because, typically, they are more concerned with the success of your business.
- High Interest Rates Are Not Always Bad — A lot of people get nervous when you bring up unsecured business loans, but if you’re careful, they can be exactly what you need. You will be paying higher interest, yes, but they are much easier to obtain and you could get the funding within 24 hours to one week. Banks often penalize people for paying loans back early, because they usually want more than 100% of the agreed upon interest rate. If you budget correctly and are careful with unsecured business loans, you will be in much better shape.
- If You’re Serious About it, You Can Get a Loan — You’ll have to do the research, but there are family-owned companies that will offer loans to businesses in various situations. New businesses or recently bankrupt businesses have the option to acquire working capital loans with no liens or collateral needed.
It can be overwhelming, but don’t think that because you’re a small business owner that you’re alone. There are plenty of organizations out there that want to help your business succeed and not just take advantage of you. Good luck and congratulations on owning your own business!