Small Business Banks

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It used to be rare to find good small business banks. Now banks have refocused their energies from Fortune 500s and the real estate market, to concentrating on the growing small business sector. That's great news for you. Commercial banks such as Wells Fargo, Citibank, and Bank of America all have prominent small business solutions. Their loan processing has never been faster. Usually, you can secure a loan of up to $25,000 if you qualify. Understand that banks will normally use hard assets (e.g. real estate, equipment) as collateral against your loans. What They'll Want Be prepared, organized, and know how to explain your business quickly. Know what you need, why you'll need it, and how you'll repay it. Most people who are denied loan requests are unprepared. Banks want to minimize their risk, so be ready to show them you're a good investment. Dealing with Commercial Banks Commercial banks will focus on the hard numbers like your credit rating and personal assets -- unfortunately, instead of your ambition and character. Hard numbers include your financial statements, tax returns, and your projected cash flow. They'll also want your business succeed for a couple of years before lending you their capital. Banks won't care how profitable your company is or will be. Remember, their main focus is on your ability to pay the principle and interest payments. On the other hand, if you develop a great relationship with your banker, he or she can pull some strings for you. Consider Community Banks If commercial banking sounds too impersonal to you, a community bank is a good option. They're much more flexible to small businesses. Unlike the challenges you'll find in when commercial banking, community banks will look beyond the numbers game when granting money. If you have the drive, the business sense, and the other intangibles needed to make a small business successful, you're in good shape for a loan. Pick the Right Banker Bankers come in wide varieties. Sure in small business banks, there's the jack-of-all-trades, the personal banker who just happens to do business, and the new college graduate. These are good for impersonal banking, but what you need is a banker with years of small business experience. Ideally, you'd also want the banker to have familiarity with your company's industry. Develop a Great Relationship with Your Banker It's the greatest banking advice we've received. Treat your banker like a partner. Give them details about your business on a consistent and frequent basis. That way, there won't be any surprises. And your banker can advise you financially along the way. They'll also be more open to provide you necessary loans because you've established your credibility that you're a serious, knowledgeable small business owner. Small business banks love that.

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Posted on February 18

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