Young, ambitious and willing to make a bet on your future earnings? Consider how Kjerstin Erickson, Saul Garlick and Jon Gosier are trying to raise money. Through an online marketplace called the Thrust Fund, the three have offered up a percentage of their future lifetime earnings in exchange for upfront, undesignated venture funding. Erickson is willing to swap 6 percent of her future lifetime earnings for $600,000. The other two entrepreneurs are each offering 3 percent of future earnings for $300,000. Beware: the legality and enforceability of these “personal investment contracts” have yet to be established.
• Express Programs This includes SBAExpress, an accelerated loan that promises a response to an application within 36 hours. The maximum guarantee for these loans is 50 percent. Other categories include Community Express, for businesses needing financial and technical assistance in underserved communities, and Patriot Express, which are designed for businesses majority-owned by veterans or members of the military.
SBA loans are made through banks, credit and other lenders who partner with the SBA. The SBA provides a government-backed guarantee on part of the loan. Under the Recovery Act and the Small Business Jobs Act, SBA loans were enhanced to provide up to a 90 percent guarantee in order to strengthen access to capital for small businesses after credit froze in 2008. The agency had record lending volumes in late 2010.
The quick answer is “Very important”. When it comes to small business lending, owners and their companies are seen as one-and- the- same. Small business owners generally exert a lot of influence over their company so lenders put a heavy emphasis on the owner’s credit profile. The better your credit history and credit score (FICO), the better the chances you will get a loan; and, likely on better terms. Your personal FICO score is also a component of the BizAnalyzerTM.
SBA CAPLines Program SBA lines of credit to meet short-term and seasonal working capital needs. There are 5 types of these lines of credit. They can be fixed or revolving lines and otherwise adhere to SBA 7a rules. Rates: 5.75 – 10%
For businesses with a year or more of history and revenue, you have more financing options, including SBA loans, term loans, business lines of credit and invoice factoring. Take our quiz to figure out your best financing options:
It’s important to remember, however, that credit cards are an expensive way of financing a small business, particularly if you have bad credit. That’s because card issuers determine annual percentage rates based largely on your personal credit scores. And research has shown that small businesses that rely heavily on credit card financing typically fail.
Because your personal credit score is in the 600s, you may qualify for a line of credit from BlueVine or OnDeck to help meet daily expenses and maintain inventory. OnDeck offers a higher credit limit and lower APRs than BlueVine. For businesses with at least nine months in operation and $75,000 in annual revenue, OnDeck is a good option. If you have less time in business and less revenue, consider BlueVine.
504 Fixed Asset Program: featuring fixed-rate and long-term financing, these loans are aimed at applicants whose business model will benefit their community directly, either by providing jobs or bringing needed services to an underserved area. Again, the maximum amount is $5 million.
SBA loans do have some restrictions on how they’re used. Funds guaranteed by the SBA can’t be used to fund an investment, or any passive business activity, like purchasing a building that will be leased to another business. They also can’t be used to reimburse a business owner for money previously invested, or repay any money owed to the government, such as taxes.
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