Top Tips for Being Finance Ready for Business Loans:
Securing finance for your business requirements can be difficult and slow at times but understanding the requirements of finance providers can cut down the time to decision, and prevent a number of over and back exchanges seeking more information. Good housekeeping of the business and focusing on certain elements can greatly improve your chances of securing finance. First Choice Financial Services DAC are well placed to assist you in securing your funding requirements. We are dealing with businesses and loan providers on a daily basis.
- Manage your current account
- Assessors look at current accounts to see the flow of money coming through your account
- Unpaids such as bounced direct debits / cheques/ standing orders etc. show a business under pressure and turn most providers off
- Ensure overdraft limits (if any) are not exceeded, at least in the 6 months prior to making an application for funding
- Financial Statements:
- Don’t wait until the deadline to have your financial statements completed – if you have had a good year’s trade, show the story. Accounts from 18 months ago don’t give an accurate picture to credit assessors or give them comfort of your performance in approving funding
- If you can, produce management accounts or indication of turnover (and ideally gross margin) if the last statements are historic
- Credit History:
- Check your credit history for you or your company on icb.ie – this shows what others see. If you have credit issues, this is not the end of the world, however, you must show that you are dealing with the position and try to secure arrangements with regards to same. (Evidence and documentation is key here)
- Schedule of Obligations:
- It can be useful to provide a picture of current debts in the business. This would detail current estimated balance, provider, duration left, monthly payment amount and the purpose & security of the loan
- Providers will be able to ascertain certain information from Balance sheet and current accounts and are likely to ask for the detail
- Ensure you are tax compliant – Revenue arrears need not be a determining factor in a credit decline once you are in an arrangement and complying, you can secure tax clearance.
- Financers will seek your tax clearance number to check your status on ROS.ie as certificates are no longer provided
- Manage your debtors and creditors –
- Some credit assessments require evidence of how well you’re managing your cashflow. Paying your suppliers in time and collecting your receipts on time is key. Cashflow is King. Creditors & debtors over 90 days owing can be an issue depending on the sector and terms of credit. Reviewing your aged debtors and aged creditors regularly is a priority to keep on top of this, it may be a case that more focus on collecting your debtors may not require a loan to be provided.
Why Use First Choice Financial Services DAC (or any broker):
First Choice Financial Services DAC have a team of 14 staff with 5 in Banking Consultancy who are all fully qualified ex-bankers and understand business affordability, cashflow needs, fundraising policies & procedures and finance structures.
The advantages of using First Choice for your fundraising needs are:
- We can simplify what can be a complicated process and do all of the “leg work” on your behalf
- We offer an insiders view of how to raise finance. We are dealing with Banks and finance companies on a daily basis
- We have agency agreements with several alternative finance companies. This provides a range of possible products that might suit, can offer comparisons of value, and best fit where multiple approvals can be secured
- We are external credit assessors for finance companies, including Microfinance Ireland. We are reviewing businesses and completing credit assessments on a regular basis
- We hold a seat on the Senior Panel of the Governments Credit Review Office. We understand bank policies & procedures and find different solutions to provide finance to viable business. We oversee and offer opinions for the Government and SMEs on declined funding applications finding solutions on one out of every two cases reviewed
- We are advisors to the SBCI (Strategic Banking Corporation of Ireland) and are working with them designing new ‘risk share’ products for lending to the Irish SME market
- We have unparalleled knowledge of the Governments Credit Guarantee Scheme, which supports lending to SMEs that don’t have security or are seeking funding in a sector which the banks do not like
- We are mentors for the Local Enterprise Office and assist new, early stage and established SMEs either secure funding or get ‘finance ready’
- We offer a professional and transparent service
- We offer a full range of other financial services that can save SMEs money (Mortgages, Life and Serious Illness cover, Retirement Planning, Debt Management, Personal Insolvency, Health Insurance, Savings & Investments, Deposits)
- If you are not finance ready now, we can give you pointers on how to get there
Typical clients will have at least one set of financial statements completed to allow an understanding of business performance. We can assist with business plan preparation in order to make these better aligned to funding applications.
If you would like to discuss your business finance needs please give a call to our Banking Consultancy team today in our Limerick (061- 317260) or Dublin (01-6931330) offices www.fcfs.ie