Business is going well, and you’re ready to expand. It’s time for a loan, and, to ensure you secure funding, you’ll need to be backed by information that accurately illustrates you and your business’ financial standing. The first thing you’ll need is a business plan that shows projected financial statements, including profit and loss, cash flow and a balance sheet. Beyond that, most applications will require specific additional information.
Five essential loan application details
Personal and business credit report. Good credit standing is vital. Prior to applying, review business and personal credit reports from major credit rating agencies. The lender will check, so you want to be sure all of the information is accurate and up-to-date. Bankruptcy or liens are red flags, and you want to be sure that these do not inadvertently show up on your credit report.
Revenue.Unless lenders specialize in startups, they’ll want to see revenue of $100,000 or more. Lenders generally offer business loan amounts of 9% to 12% of your annual revenue.
Proof of profitability. You will need to show that your business makes money, but high sales volume is not enough. You’ll also need to show profitability ratios that indicate overall efficiency and performance.Cash flow. How you manage cash flow is an indication of success from the lender’s perspective. You’ll want to demonstrate that you have enough cash to pay off your expenses and their loan. Make sure your accounts receivable and accounts payable present a picture of financial health.
Debt. You’ll be asked for a list of current business debts and your payment history. Lenders look closely at debt and tend to avoid being second in the lending line. If you default or go bankrupt, the first lender is paid, not the second.
And remember: Your chances of obtaining a loan are much better if your information is concise and displays business acumen.