Best Small Business Loans for Women
In order to find the best small business loans for women, we looked at terms and conditions, ease of access, interest rates, and requirements.
Women-owned businesses are among the fastest-growing segment of entrepreneurs in the U.S., representing approximately 40% of small businesses, but they only account for about four percent of the the total dollar amount of loans. Since the 2008 financial crisis, a host of online business lenders have emerged, offering loans with less stringent requirements than traditional sources of financing, such as the Small Business Administration (SBA), banks, or cooperatives. Though borrowing costs are higher with online lenders, their time to funding is considerably quicker, providing the borrowed capital to purchase inventory, expand, and bridge seasonal cash flow gaps.
Some educational and networking resources available specifically to women include the SBA Women's Business Centers, National Association of Women Business Owners, National Women's Business Council, and WomanOwned.
Top 4 Small Business Loans for Women
OnDeck provides small business loans ideal for use as expansion capital, of up to $500,000, more quickly and with fewer requirements than traditional lenders. Their expert advisors go through comprehensive training, so they can help assess each borrower's business, across a selection of 700 different industries. OnDeck's flexible terms and rates are based on the company's performance, not solely on personal credit history, evidencing their commitment to encouraging and developing small businesses. Their loan applications can be completed online or over the phone in as little as ten minutes, prospective borrowers can expect a decision within minutes, and funds in as little as 24 hours. Though they do accept applications from business owners with personal credit scores as low as 500 for term loans, the majority of borrowers have scores of 660 or higher, gross revenue exceeding $450,000, and a median time in business of seven years.
Kabbage provides small business loans by focusing more on it’s accounting, banking and e-commerce data than on credit scores, which makes it ideal for borrowers with problematic credit histories. Since Kabbage offers loans for poor-credit customers, these can be expensive, have a complicated fee structure and annual percentage rates that range from 24% to 99%. However, they can be very convenient for borrowers in need of quick access to working capita. Their application process requires no paperwork, and can be approved and funded within a few days at the most. Though the vast majority of borrowers have credit scores of at least 500, Kabbage primarily considers data from the business' linked accounts, its average monthly revenue and the number of years it's been in business.
Lending Tree puts female entrepreneurs in contact with their network of funding partners, giving them access to many different types of small business loans including short term loans, term loans, business lines of credit, working capital loans, equipment loans, and accounts receivable financing. Lending Tree is one of the largest websites of this type in the business, and has helped over 40 million people find funding. After completing their application form of just ten simple questions, Lending Tree puts borrowers in contact with a maximum of four lenders, thereby increasing their chances of obtaining the best rates and loan terms.
Torro puts borrowers in contact with dozens of small business lenders, brokers, and private investors offering low rate loans with affordable payments for nearly any type of business: existing, startups, and hard to place loans. Their application process is simple and quick, without any asset verification, no business appraisal, and little to no paperwork. They excel particularly in the startup loan arena, where they divide the types of financing between loans for documented ventures and funding options for idea-based ventures. Torro can also help borrowers obtain merchant cash advance loans for the quickest access to funds. These are repaid based on the borrower's projected future income, with a small percentage taken from each credit card transaction until the loan is repaid in full.
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Comparing Small Business Loans for Women
Loan Options - 20%
Application Process - 25%
Rates & Fees - 30%
Reputation - 25%