Business Loans in Georgia: How to Select the Best Loan
Many of the small businesses in the Peach State are in industries such as accommodation and food services, health care and social assistance, professional, scientific, and technical services, retail trade, and construction.
If you have a small business in the state of Georgia or would like to start one, small business loans in Georgia may be very helpful. In the sections below, we’ll explain how to select and utilize a business loan as a business owner in Georgia.
What to Do with Georgia Business Loans
Business loans in Georgia are versatile so you can usually use them for a variety of business expenses. If you need to cover the cost of marketing and inventory for your startup, for example, a loan program will allow you to do so.
You can also use a loan to pay for the expenses involved in expanding your product lineup or opening new locations in or even out of Georgia. As long as your expenses are intended to run or grow your business, a Georgia business loan can help you out.
Types of Business Financing in Georgia
There are a wide array of small business loans in Georgia. That’s why it’s important to compare all your options before you choose one.
SBA loans are partially guaranteed by the Small Business Administration or SBA. While there are many types available, the main options are the 7(a), CDC/504, and microloan. You can use an SBA loan to pay for working capital, inventory and equipment, commercial real estate, debt refinancing, and other business expenses.
Small business loan providers usually give you a lump sum of money upfront. You’ll repay this amount plus interest via installments over a period of a few months to several years. While you may be able to land a competitive interest rate with a traditional bank loan, you’ll likely need strong credit to qualify.
Commercial Real Estate Loan
Since you probably don’t have hundreds of thousands of dollars or more to buy an office space, warehouse, or other type of commercial property in cash, a commercial real estate loan can come in handy. The various types of commercial real estate loans include traditional commercial mortgages, SBA 7(a) loans, conduit loans, and commercial bridge loans.
Equipment loans are ideal if you need to purchase any type of equipment like computers, ovens, fax machines, or bulldozers. With an equipment loan, you’ll make regular payments over an agreed upon term. Since it uses your equipment as collateral, you can get approved with poor or fair credit.
Business Credit Cards
There are countless business credit cards out there. Some come with perks like:
- Cash back
- Travel points
- Gift cards
- 0% introductory offers
You can use a business credit to pay for everyday expenses up to your set credit limit, just like you would with a personal credit card.
Merchant Cash Advance
Merchant cash advances are tied to your future credit card and debit card sales. If you go this route, you’ll receive funds in exchange for a percentage of your transactions. In most cases, the lender will make payments to you daily as you generate credit and debit card sales. The amount you’ll need to repay will be determined by a factor rate, which is based on your business’s financial status.
Invoice factoring can be beneficial if you need fast cash and don’t want to apply for a traditional loan. A factoring company will offer your business an advance of about 80% of your invoices upfront. Your customers will repay the factoring company, which will distribute the remainder of the invoice minus any fees back to you.
Business Line of Credit
Unlike term loans, receiving a credit line will allow you to borrow as much or as little as you’d like up to a set credit limit. This funding option is optimal for seasonal business owners, companies that don’t get paid in frequent installments, or if you simply need extra capital on-hand.
Small Business Resources for Georgia Business Owners
If you’re a small business owner in the Peach State, there are many resources that you may find very useful. If you need help with your business plan or other areas of your business, here’s a few resources to check out:
- Georgia Chamber of Commerce: The Georgia Chamber of Commerce offers resources for all types of businesses in Georgia. These include educational sessions, networking events, and investing opportunities.
- The Greater Women’s Business Council (GWBC): This organization is specifically designed for women who own small businesses in Georgia. If you become a part of it, you can be added to the supplier list of large companies like Coca Cola and UPS.
- Access to Capital for Entrepreneurs (ACE): ACE promotes business growth in the state through financing and education. It’s been around since 2000 and lent over $72 million to entrepreneurs.
- SCORE Atlanta: SCORE Atlanta can be a good option if you’d like to work with a small business mentor for free. SCORE also hosts online workshops and other informative events.
Conclusion: Jumpstart or Grow Your Business with Georgia Business Loans
Whether you’d like to start your venture or expand what you’ve already started, small business loans in Georgia should be on your radar. These financial products can provide you with the funds you need to succeed. Don’t forget to pair them with the various statewide resources available to you.
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.