You’ve been working a full-time job for 5 years now and the only real person benefiting is your Boss on the 4th floor and you feel you have all the necessary elements to start a business of your own!

Well, all except one, the Capital.

How many individuals have the right ideas, the right amount of passion, enthusiasm and contacts, without the money to get them started? While I don’t have access to those statistics specifically, my guess would be that there are more than we’d believe. Luckily for those, there are provisions in the form of a little word called “loans”.

Now, while we all know what loans are, we don’t always know how to go about them. Furthermore, it can feel a little fretful if you aren’t sure of the Do’s and Don’ts when it comes to the time you’re face to face with the lender. Which is exactly why I’ve put this list together because there is absolutely nothing to fear and everything to gain!

This could be the start of following that once seemingly elusive dream, of starting up your very own business… Good luck!

Do:

  • MAKE sure you look the part. No need to sport a tuxedo or ball gown, but being neat, well-groomed and carrying an air of professionalism will go a long way. Your look is the first impression as you walk in!
  • YOUR homework! The more prepared you are for this meeting, the more likely the lender is to take you seriously on your loan application. Ensure that you have a list of expected questions and scenarios that will unfold in this meeting and you will feel all the more confident as you go through the process.
  • HAVE a solid loan figure and repayment plan in mind. You need to be confident in how your company will be able to afford the repayments of the loan you’re applying for.
  • SHOP for the best possible deal that suits the needs of your business. Business is business and lending companies compete as well. So, make sure that you have researched the lending rates and the fulfilments offered across more than one company.
  • HAVE a sound Business Plan at hand. Lenders often request this and having all your information readily available for them to start reviewing, is a depiction of how organised and serious you are about the business.
  • CONSULT your attorney or have him present at the meeting. Making sure that the legalities are all in check and match your understanding of what you hope to achieve with this application is very important – for obvious reasons.

Don’t:

  • BE GREEDY or ignorant by asking how much you qualify for when it comes to the loan. The lender won’t see this as a positive sign when making your application. As mentioned in the “Do’s” – have a solid figure on paper that your business requires.
  • SHOW up empty on the Financials. The lender needs to assess these documents. You not being able to produce them will count against you. If they are not yet ready, wait before scheduling your appointment with the lender. He’s not going anywhere and neither is your business idea, do it right and have all your paperwork.
  • SCHEDULE a meeting when you have a high list of other debts. Make sure that you have a good credit record and nothing financially is going to count against your loan request amount.
  • REQUEST more than you need. You don’t need a financial burden hanging over your head that you can’t repay or might struggle with.
  • BE NERVOUS, confidence is key! You have a solid plan and you have followed all the “Do’s”, so stay calm and let the lender assess your loan application and come to his decision.