SBA Small Business Loans

How to Apply for SBA Small Business Loans

With the recent economic downturn and current financial problems in the USA and most European countries, you would be forgiven for thinking that perhaps now is not the best time for starting a new business or applying for SBA Small Business Loans. You may even be right! However, no entrepreneur ever made any money without taking some risk, and with carefully looking for a nice niche business, you might well be able to start a new business, especially as small business finance should start to be more readily available soon after the US and UK governments, in particular, have injected a large amount of funds into promoting small business loans.

The starting point for any new business before applying for SBA Small Business Loans must be to create a business plan, and the starting point for any business plan should be some form of market research; market research can be a little tricky when starting a new business that relies on a new innovative idea that you want to keep secret until the business is established, but generally some useful market research can be done by asking prospective customers if they would be interested in any of the services that you could offer with your new business, and if so, how much would they be willing to pay for such a service.

Preparing the Business Plan Preparation of a good business plan can take several months and often it is advisable to get the help of a business plan consultant who specializes in creating business plans. If the business plan looks like it has been prepared by an amateur, then nobody will really take it seriously and the chance of landing that sought-after finance becomes less likely than winning the lottery.

If you decide that to employ a business plan consultant is too expensive for you, then you can find a great deal of useful information on the Small Business Administration (SBA) website, especially to do with writing a good business plan and developing a business. The Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) is a business partner with the SBA and they provide free advice on a 1-to-1 basis for starting / expanding businesses, including legal requirements, marketing, and getting SBA Small Business Loans.

Small business bank loan

Having prepared your business plan, take it along to a local bank and discuss it with them and get their reaction to it - if this is favourable, discuss how much it will cost to get a small business bank loan and how the bank can help, e.g. no bank charges for the first year of running the business, facility of overdraft if required, possibility of extending the loan later if required for expansion of the business, etc. Donít commit yourself to any lender at this stage and talk to other lenders and get their reaction and details. If you are getting a good reaction from all or most of the lenders, then pick the best of the business lenders for your business.

If your selected lender is willing to go ahead with the loan then you donít need to get the SBA involved; get your accountant to check it over and then proceed with the loan when you are ready, taking into account times for removals, etc.

If the bank is unwilling to approve the loan then you can request that they submit your application to the SBA who may guarantee as much as 80% of the loan, which makes it considerably more attractive to the bank, although if they are still not happy to lend the money then you can go no further with this particular lender. On the other hand, if they are happy to proceed, they will forward your business plan together with a credit report credit score and an application form to the SBA and will then keep in touch with the SBA until the loan is approved.

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