Business Loans in Florida: How to Select a Business Loan
If you are or would like to become a business owner in the Sunshine State, there are a variety of small business loans that can help you out. Here’s what you need to know about small business loans in Florida.
Uses for a Small Business Loan in Florida
Most business financing options for Florida based businesses are flexible, meaning you can use them for just about any purpose. A loan may be useful if you’d like to cover the cost of inventory or equipment. You might also use it to fund day-to-day expenses like rent, payroll, and utilities.
If you’re an established business, receiving a loan amount may help you open new locations or even expand outside of the state. It can also come in handy during the off season or periods of slow sales.
Types of Small Business Loans in Florida
When you search for a small business loan in Florida, be sure to keep these options on your radar. Keep in mind that the eligibility requirements and application process will depend on the loan type and lender.
Small Business Loans
Business loans can be found at banks, credit unions, and online lenders. They usually offer low interest rates and attractive terms. In most cases, however, bank loans require good or excellent credit. You might have to wait weeks or even months before you receive the funds.
Guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA), SBA loans are appealing because of their great rates and long repayment terms. There are many types of SBA loans including the Standard 7(a), 7(a) Small Loan, Export Loan, SBA Express, SBA 504 loans, Veterans Advantage, and CAPLines.
Also known as a business mortgage, a commercial mortgage can be beneficial if you need a commercial property or land. You can think of it as a real estate loan that can help fund the high cost of a warehouse, office, retail space, or any other type of property. It can also help you expand to a larger location.
There’s a good chance you’ll need equipment to run your small business effectively. Equipment may be an oven for a restaurant, a medical device for a healthcare practice, a computer monitor for a car dealership. It’s anything that is essential for you to operate at maximum efficiency. Equipment loans are specifically designed to help you pay for various types of equipment.
Line of Credit
If you’re in search of a flexible loan, a line of credit can be a good option. Unlike installment loans, it will allow you to borrow as much or as little as you’d like up to a set credit limit. You may want to consider a business credit line if your business has seasonal fluctuations, your clients take a while to pay you for your products or services, or you need extra capital to cover the cost of labor or supplies for a new customer.
Merchant Cash Advance
A merchant cash advance (MCA) may make sense if your business receives debit and credit card payments from customers. You can receive a lump sum of cash upfront and repay the advance with a percentage of your sales. With an MCA, you may enjoy fast access to cash and flexible repayment terms, even if you don’t have the best credit score.
Invoice factoring is when you sell your invoices at a discounted price to a factory company. In exchange, the factoring company will give you a lump sum of cash for your business. The factoring company will own your invoices and collect payment from your customers, usually in 30 to 90 days. If slow paying customers stall your operations or growth efforts, invoice factoring may be worthwhile.
Resources for Florida Based Small Business Owners
If you own a small business in Florida, these resources may be useful:
- Florida’s Small Business Development Center Network (FLSBDC): This organization offers free training programs, business consulting, and research support to businesses in Florida. It can benefit you regardless of if you own a startup or have been around for a while.
- Score Central Florida: Score is a resource partner of the SBA. It provides entrepreneurs and small businesses in Central Florida with mentoring, counseling services, and workshops. Plus, you don’t have to pay a membership cost to take advantage of these programs.
- Lee Entrepreneurs’ Assistance Resource Network (LEARN): With LEARN, you can enjoy access to outreach activities and services in Southwest Florida. Its mission is to “promote the establishment, retention and expansion of businesses” in the area.
Conclusion: Grow Your Business with Florida Business Loans
Whether you have a small business in the Sunshine State or have plans to start one, accessing additional working capital in Florida can provide you with the funding needed to grow your operations. If you combine them with the various resources at your disposal, you’re sure to set your venture up for success.
Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.