Critical Steps to Securing a Small-Business Loan
Jun 21 2018
Bell Bank is willing to lend to new or start-up businesses, but you have to prepare well in advance, and make sure your personal finances are in order.
Pay down credit cards and personal debts. Make sure your credit report is clear of any outstanding collections and that your revolving debt and credit card balances are minimal. Our lenders will want to see that you pay your loans on time.
Save up cash for working capital and a down payment on your loan. You may need to consider downsizing your house, vehicles and/or selling your “toys” to help fund your business.
3. Outside income
You may need to keep your current job or live off of a spouse’s income until your business is well-established. Be prepared for it to take 5 years or more before the business can support your living expenses.
4. Income-tax returns
Our lenders typically require 3 years of personal income-tax returns as well as income-tax returns for any business ventures with which you have been involved.
5. Financial statement
Our lenders will need a detailed statement of your assets and liabilities. They will look closely at your cash, liquid investment balances and equity in homes or other real estate.
6. Outside investors
If you are not financially positioned to start a business, look into funding from outside investors or loan guarantors.
7. Business plan
Our lenders want to see that you’ve thought through all aspects of your business from potential obstacles and how you would overcome them to projections for your business’ first 3 years. Read on for the 5 things our bankers look for in a great business plan.
Securing a small-business loan might seem daunting, but you’ll have an easier time if you’re an organized, financially healthy borrower. We’re willing to meet with you, even early in the process. Contact us and we can answer your questions, give you insight into how the financing structure could look and refer you to other sources for guidance.