You have a fantastic idea for a business and there’s nothing you want more in the world than to make your vision become a reality. But there’s just one thing that’s holding you back: money.
Even if you’re planning on opening a small operation, you will need an ample supply of cash to get the ball rolling. How can you do that when you don’t have any money in the bank and you don’t know anyone who is willing to invest in you? There is a way that you can get the funds you need: a small business loan.
From banks to loans that are backed by the Small Business Administration, there are many different loan options available for entrepreneurs. But though you are an expert in your industry, you don’t know the first thing about finding or applying for a loan.
Here’s a look at some resources that can help you find the best loan option for your business, and the best part is – they are free!
Use a Business Loan Calculator
Before you can apply for a business loan, you need to determine how much money you need. There are so many costs involved with starting a business, such as leasing or buying commercial property, the various types of equipment you’ll need, a staff, marketing… the list seems to go on and on.
Trying to keep a tally of all those numbers can be daunting. To help make keeping track of all of those numbers easier, use a calculator! There are plenty of free business calculators out there. Find one that’s offered by a reputable company and use it to its full advantage!
Speak to the Small Business Administration
The Small Business Administration (also known as the SBA) is an agency that operates under the United States government. The goal of this agency is to provide support to those who are interested in starting a small business. The SBA offers a wealth of resources, from advice and information, to loans that are backed and guaranteed by the United States government.
There is at least on SBA office in all 50 states. You can reach out to one of these offices and ask to have a consultation to find out about the options that are available to you for starting your small business – and the call and consultation are completely free!
Talk to a Financial Advisor
Have you thought of consulting a financial advisor? Lending companies, banks, and other financial institutions have financial advisors offering free consultation. A financial advisor can provide expert advice on the best loan options suitable for your business. You can ask a financial advisor about the difference between secured and unsecured business loans, including interest rates and fees. Knowing and maximizing your options help enable you to decide what type of business loan to choose.
But of course, financial advisors tend to patronize the loan product their companies are offering. Therefore, you should be keen on the pros and cons. Weigh your options carefully and consider your business needs. How big is your business? Can you afford to pay the monthly payments with your projected profits? A well-thought business plan is crucial to answering all these questions. This way, you can decide on the best business loan that is aligned with your needs and financial capabilities.
You’ll find financial advisors online too. They’re the ones who provide free advice through blogging and video tutorials. Financial advisors also stream online in video-based social media networks and podcasts. Some financial advisors even offer virtual consultations during their free time.
Visit the Library
Public libraries offer a wealth of information for people who are interested in opening a small business. They provide free access to computers and the Internet, photocopy machines and printers (small fees do apply to the latter two). They offer spaces where you can meet with business professionals, free of charge. Some public libraries also host workshops and meet-and-greets where those who own businesses and those who wish to own one can connect with each other. And of course, public libraries are stocked with tons of books, magazines, and multimedia that pertain to opening and running a business, such as sample business plans and information about the different types of business loan options that are available. Your local library really is a treasure trove of information for small business owners.
If you don’t have the capital you need to start your business readily available, a loan can provide you with the financing you need to turn your dream of becoming an entrepreneur into a reality. By using the free tools mentioned above, you can find the best business loan to meet your specific needs so that you can get your business off the ground.