The Deal is in the Details
What Startups Need to Get a Business Loan, Part 2
In part 1 of this article, entitled "Three C's", we looked at the overview of startup business loan requirements from the lender's perspective. We read how cash, good credit and sufficient collateral form a joint partnership to enable a loan request to bond together into a doable deal. Part 2 will convey the borrower's documentation necessities in a more detailed fashion. Bear in mind that the following points are of a "generally complete scope", and that different types of lenders may have additional, similar, or unique conditions to adhere to.
All would-be borrowers of startup business capital need to begin to create and/or gather the following information:
Business Plan - This is not the same as a full scope "business plan" that you would have professionally prepared to approach a venture capital firm. What your plan needs to document is the type of business, ownership information, legal entity (i.e., sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, etc.), the origination date of the company, the type of product or service offered, and any organizational or management information that the lender should know about, such as:
How many employees will you have, if any, and what their function will be
How you intend to get business
What your selling terms are (e.g., 2% 10 days, net 30)
What facilities are utilized, etc.
Use of proceeds - Disclose the loan amount and how the funds will be used (percentage of working capital, of new equipment, of paying off other debts, etc.).
Projections - This is a major area. If you can get letters from two or three trades that say they are ready to give you projects once you are funded, it would help tremendously. Also, include income and expense projections for the next three years prepared by you or by an accountant. Generally, lenders will want to see cash flow such that your net income from the business will be at least 1.5 times that of the debt service.
Personal Financial Statement - Make sure to list all of your assets and all of your liabilities. List any personal debt owed to banks, finance companies, etc.
Personal Tax Returns - Provide copies of the last three years personal tax returns. Make sure to include all pages.
Personal Resume - You can create this yourself; there's no need to hire a professional to do this. However, do your very best to make it look professional.
Articles of Incorporation - If the business entity is a corporation, provide a copy of the Articles of Incorporation and the borrowing resolution of the company.
Partnership Agreement - If the business entity is a partnership, provide a copy of the Partnership Agreement.
Business References - Provide three letters of reference, one being from another bank or lender. Ask for testimonials. Do not just list names and phone numbers.
Listing of Fixed Assets - List all your fixed assets with their approximate fair market value and their make, model and serial numbers. List their liquidation value as well.
Equipment - If any of the proceeds are for new equipment, provide invoices or equipment description(s). List any equipment for the business in your possession, it's age, a copy of title, the original dealer invoice, and the amount of hours on the equipment.
Bank Statements - Include bank statement(s) to verify the amount of cash you have to put down on the loan.
Credit Report - If you have ordered and received your personal credit report, include it as well.
Professional Assistance - List the contact information of your banker, your accountant, your attorney, and your loan broker.
With all of this information compiled, you're well on your way to having a nice package to present to a lender. A very wise move would be to contact a professional loan broker to assist you in putting the documentation together into a format that commercial lenders and banks want to see. Brokers are also able to submit your loan request to a few different lenders to provide you with the best possible rates and terms. He or she will also strengthen the request by making certain that all of the appropriate paperwork is gathered and put into it's proper order.
Though this procedure may seem daunting, and the documents take a good amount of time to create, there is an additional benefit that is not readily apparent to most borrowers. If, for one reason or another your loan is not approved with the initial attempt, it only takes a few forms prepared by your broker to convert your request into an SBA loan. At that point, you may have a much better chance of funding. Since it's beyond the scope of this article to discuss SBA loans, contact a loan brokering professional for more detailed information.
Mark Uptain is the owner of Regent Business Capital, a loan and lease brokerage that works with lenders nationwide to help small and medium-sized businesses get financing. His website The Equipment Leasing Source, offers free equipment leasing information and competitive quotes to businesses throughout the United States.
Independent Auto Detail Shop VS Biz Op or Franchise
Owning a detail shop can be an exciting and rewarding business indeed. Many times an owner of an independent Detailing Shop will wish to add those items he/she believes their customers want. Since an independent detail shop is not a franchise or affiliate they can try new things and do what ever they want. They use their knowledge of the industry, a little intuition and luck; it is a best guess issue. For an independent detailing shop entrepreneur; there is no proven business plan to go by, but the savvy operator who is in touch with their customers seldom has to face a shot in the dark.
Expand Your Resourcefullness!
The success and failure for the entrepreneur is largely dictated by the ability to gain access to resources, both personal as well as those of others.
An Entrepreneur and a Life To Be Remembered
I was reminded of my own mortality today. I guess you can say I had a near death experience, though the death I experienced was not my own.
Franchises - Success and You
Many people believe owning a franchise will make them rich, financially secure, and provide the life of their dreams. True, franchises have an extremely high success rate, and a very high satisfaction rate among their owners. But is that success guaranteed when you purchase a franchise? NO!
Work On, Not In Your Business
Are you busy? Everyone's busy! Ask anyone they'll tell you how busy they are. But how many people are accomplishing real results?
Realism vs. Optimism in the Business Plan
The most important function of a business plan is to create interest among investors so that they write a check. In achieving this goal, business plan writers are often challenged by determining the proper level of optimism in their plan. That is, they must create a compelling story to investors while maintaining credibility.
Ex-Yankee Pitcher Pitches Barter As Powerful Business Tool
Mission Viejo, CA - June 14, 2005 - Bob Meyer, a former major league pitcher in the 1960s who signed four-consecutive major league contracts with the New York Yankees, is now the most visible spokesman for the worldwide commercial barter industry.
Franchisor Sample Grand Opening Launch for New Franchised Outlets
It is paramount that all franchising companies work hard in the critical launching of all franchises in their new territories. In this present period most franchisees come into the franchise systems with much personal debt and barely squeak by on their initial capital needed. One major error or mistake and the franchisee will fail due to under capitalization. Below it a sample outline and message to new franchisees; I recommend that you take a look at this and develop a policy and plan to help your new franchisees in the beginning gain ground on their new markets. You should copy this article and make notes on it and then take the outline below modify it to fit your business model and write several paragraphs for each number and lettered item to cement your new franchised outlet marketing plan. While reading this policy and outline below realize that it was written for a mobile car wash business and your plan will be significantly different but this will help you in making a first class strategy to win market share for your newest team members.
Be Where the Pucks Going To Be
The "Great One" said it best
The Visionary Entrepreneur
Any success you have in life must begin with a vision. A vision is the ability to see what others cannot see. It is being able to have a picture in your mind of exactly the result you intend to produce. The visionary entrepreneur is able to see exactly what his or her business is going to look like in every detail when it is finished.
How Much Risk is Necessary to Grow Your Business?
A business owner is thoroughly responsible for their own financial survival and possibly the financial survival of their employees. Business owners, for the most part, seem to be "risk takers", who really don't easily "go with the flow". They are inventive and somewhat confident, as just having their own business does mandate that they possess these qualities.
Face The Fear, Ladies
Okay, I'll begin by telling you that I've been divorced for about 5 years, have an amazing family and by anyone's standards, I have a wonderful life.
Which Niche To Conquer?
I'm sure that you've heard about how many start up companies fail when they first begin, and the reason that most (if not all) of their failures is because they don't create a good fountain to build on.
16 Vital Traits Shared by All Successful Entrepreneurs
The first step in deciding whether to start a business is to ask yourself this important question: "Do I have what it takes to be an entrepreneur?" A variety of experts have documented research that indicates that successful small business entrepreneurs, whether male or female, have some common characteristics. How do you measure up? It will be up to you -- not someone else telling you - to develop projects, organize your time and follow through on details.
Dream It, Create It, Become It! Design a Dream Board
Have you ever heard of "Dream Boards" or "Treasure Maps"? A Dream Board is a visual picture of the dreams you have for your life. Some of my clients also use this concept to visualize their businesses! It's their first business plan.One thing that is important to remember, though, is not to "get stuck" on your dream boards. We all have plans for our future, but it's important to watch the universe for signs of "its" plans for us. Otherwise, we might miss out on some great opportunities!
How To Get More Clients and Customers; Dont Sell Be of Service
Whether you are just starting your business or focusing on growing it, I'm sure you are like most small business owners you are looking for ways to get more clients and customers. There is a lot of information out there on selling, persuasion tactics, and gimmicks to get people to buy. I am suggesting a radical shift in perspective when thinking about the question: How do you get more clients and customers?
Questions For The Entrepreneur To Be
Richard Branson, billionaire founder of Virgin Records and Virgin Atlantic Airlines, may be better known for his efforts to circle the globe in a hot-air balloon than for his business successes. He suggests that "Being an adventurer and an entrepreneur are similar? You're willing to go where most people won't dare."
Starting a Company on a Shoe-String Budget
A lot of people never start businesses because they believe they don't have enough money to do so. Unfortunately, these same people don't realize that many of the world's most successful companies were started on a shoe-string budget by an entrepreneur with limited resources. Below is a list of tips to help you save money when you're first starting a company: Manage your finances in MS Excel, not Quickbooks.Manage your contacts in MS Outlook, not ACT.Get free legal and accounting advice from law/business students or lawyers/accountants who are willing to do pro-bono (free) work.Look for and join organizations that support youth entrepreneurs and small business owners. Hire unpaid interns and make their job exciting.Partner with somebody instead of paying them.Use credit cards.Get free, professional advice from SCORE, Teachers, and Professors.Get investments from family and friends.Find organizations who incubate startup companies or companies who might have office space that might be willing to let an aspiring entrepreneur use it. Perhaps, your school will let you use their copy machines and phone lines.Swap services with a company instead of paying them.Learn how to do graphic design and web design yourself. If you have these two skills, the startup costs of every business you have in the future will be dramatically reduced.
How To Start a New Business
While it is tempting to just leap into a new business because of it's exciting possibilities, a few key planning points will vastly increase your chances of success. These steps aren't difficult, but they're easy to skip. Many businesses ultimately depend on a slim profit margin, so planning can really help the process. Too many restaurant patrons, for instance, assume that running a restaurant seems fun because of the many restaurants they have visited, but restaurants have an especially high failure rate.
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