Taking a business loan is a significant step toward achieving goals as a business owner. However, it can be a scary step to take, particularly if their typically a debt-mindful, frugal individual. As with anything, they want to get the most bang for their buck when borrowing money.
Here are some useful steps they can take to get the most out of their business loan, both before they borrow and after.
Take a Step Back
Before a person signs on the dotted line, they should take a step back and consider other options and possibilities. If you keep telling yourself i need cash now as a borrower, it can put a person into a panic and won’t make the best possible decision when choosing a loan. They may in fact be right; they do need cash now. However, taking a moment will help them find the best lender for their needs.
Taking that moment of reflection may also help them realize where they can find some extra money or reallocate funds rather than taking a loan. Every decision they make as a business owner should be purposeful and full of intent.
Build Vendor Relationships
Many business owners get so caught up in building a relationship with their customers, that they neglect to do so in another important area of their business: with their vendors. Their vendors are the people that supply them with what they need to keep their business functional. They are often also the first to suffer when they are experiencing financial trouble.
Before running to the bank to take a loan to pay their vendors, have a candid discussion with about the trouble with the business. They may be willing to give an extension on terms and, if they have a strong relationship, continue to provide them with supplies despite their financial insecurity. Be sure to abide by whatever agreement they make, and take that loan if the financial issues continue.
Take What Is Needed
When a business gets a loan, take only what is needed rather than getting a lot of extra money. To do so, a borrower will need to sit down and create a budget that outlines what expenses the loan will cover. If they need a bit of money to get them through a payment gap, a short-term loan or payday loan should be sufficient. If they have big plans of expansion but need the liquid assets to support it, they’ll be looking for something long term with lower interest.
While it makes sense to have a small buffer in case their calculations are off, don’t take the maximum amount that the business is approved for. This leads to irresponsible borrowing and financial instability. This can end up stretching a business too thin and end up in a bad situation.
Take Time to Understand Everything
The world of lending and borrowing has a special jargon and nuances that can be difficult to understand for the average person. When \borrowing money, personal education on the details of their agreement can make the experience positive overall. Be sure to clarify the terms of their loan, the type of interest rate, if there are any early payment penalties, the payment schedule, insurance, etc.
If the business works with a reputable lender, they should have someone on staff to answer their questions. An experienced financial advisor or loan officer values customer service and wants them to know exactly what they are signing up for so they can make a profit while adhering to consumer protection laws.
Take a decent amount of time when getting a business loan, even if the business needs the money right away. The borrower should research and educate themselves in order to get the best deal possible!