Funding Circle Funding Circle
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Funding Circle Review

Funding Circle
Rating:
Bottom Line:
Best for established businesses with a steady cash flow; loans are secured with long repayment periods; quick and simple application process

Full Review:
Funding Circle was founded by small business owners who got the idea after opening their 96th loan rejection letter. The aim is to offer a better solution for small business owners than traditional bank loans. The service offers loans to established businesses, which are funded by investors who are also Funding Circle customers.


Types of Loans Available

Funding Circle offers fixed-rate loans, which means your payments will be the same each month throughout the life of your loan. Its loans are designed to help business owners with a variety of business needs, such as purchasing inventory or hiring employees. You can request a loan from $25,000 to $500,000 and interest rates range from 4.99% to 27.79% — although the service says its average interest rates fall between 10% and 15%.


Loans from Funding Circle, unlike most of the services we review, are secured. This means you will be required to put down collateral, although the service claims no rigid guidelines on what can be used. Loans also require a lien on your business assets and a personal guarantee from the primary business owners.

The investors who fund the loans are also customers of Funding Circle, which adds a personal touch that is quite different from your everyday bank loan.




Qualifying

To qualify for a loan from Funding Circle, your business must have been profitable for at least two years and make $150,000 or more in annual revenue. Additionally, the business owner must have a personal credit score of 620 or better and be able to provide collateral to secure the loan — examples given are home equity, vehicles, equipment, accounts receivable and cash savings or deposits.

If you're applying for a loan under $200,000, you will be required to provide the last three years' worth of business tax returns, your most recent personal tax return (including W-2s) and the most recent six months of business bank statements.

Loan applications for amounts over $200,000 will be required to submit all of that, as well as an YTD balance sheet and income statement and fill out a worksheet with information about any outstanding business loans and credit.


Application Process

The application process is quick and simple. After providing some basic information about yourself and your business, you can find out whether you are eligible in seconds. The full application takes about 10 minutes to submit online, and you should hear from a loan specialist by phone within two hours. The loan specialist will help you submit documents necessary to verify your application.

Once everything is approved, you should receive the funds into your bank account within one to two weeks from the time of your application. The service says it has funded loans as quickly as within five days, and it promises the entire application process will take no more than 14 days.


Repayment and Fees

Funding Circle offers repayment terms ranging from half a year to five years (6 to 60 months) with monthly payments. There is no fee to pay your loan off early, but every loan will be charged an origination fee. This fee is 0.99% to 6.99% of your total loan amount and will be taken out before the funds are deposited into your account.

If a payment is late, the service will charge a fee equal to 10% of the payment in question. Additionally, if your payment does not go through due to non-sufficient funds, you will be charged a $35 fee.


Customer Support and Trustworthiness

Customers can reach Funding Circle by toll-free phone or email. Customer service hours are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. PT. An email sent during business hours was responded to within the hour, and the phone representative we spoke with was friendly and knowledgeable.



Funding Circle is a member of the National Association of Equipment Leasing Brokers and the International Franchise Association, two organizations designed to promote small businesses. It has an A+ rating with the BBB and has been accredited with the organization since 2013. Although the service is relatively new, it has built up a good reputation during its operation.


Conclusion

Established small businesses with owners who have fair credit or better will have the best success using Funding Circle to request a loan. Although rates can be higher depending on your credit and the health of your business, the better rates are worth pursuing. However, if you are looking for a loan that does not require collateral, you should look at a service which offers unsecured loans.

Compare to Other Small Business Loans

If you have a question or concern we haven't answered on our site, please let us know. Your question will be added to the NextAdvisor Forums so that we and other experts in our community can answer it. Due to volume, we aren't able to respond to every question, but we answer as many as we can.



Service Details

Minimum/Maximum Loan Amount:$25,000 - $500,000
APR:4.99% - 27.79%
Terms Available:6 - 60 months
Origination Fee:0.99% - 6.99%
Minimum Business Age Required:2 years
Minimum Annual Revenue Required:$150,000
Owner's Credit Rating:620+

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