The Best Small Business Lenders? Answered.

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  2. The Best Small Business Lenders? Answered.

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best small business lenders

Finding the right business lender for you can be hard. Even after reading a lot about the business loans industry, the best small business lenders are not always so easy to spot. 

The Ease Of Getting A Business Loan

Getting a business loan is actually quite easy. In fact, getting a loan, even from a bank, might be easier now than ever before. That says nothing of how easy it is to get approved by an alternative lender.

The downside to this freedom of choice is that choosing the right lender has become harder. Debt and interest payments are a common part of life in the US, for both individuals and businesses small and large. Making the right financial choices is therefore key if you want to avoid debt and be able to grow.

With these things in mind, we have a few great examples to show you to send you in the right direction.

What Makes A Lender One Of “The Best”

The examples we’ve used here are popular and reputable options that can handle a wide range of business needs. They are by no means one-size-fits-all business loan options. They are just the best small business lenders overall.

Some of these lenders have particular strengths that you should be aware of if you’re looking for a loan. We will highlight some of these strengths. With that in mind, let’s get started!

The Best Banks

Some of the best terms on the business loan market are offered through traditional banks. If you’re looking for the best rates, you’ll want a Small Business Administration (SBA). These loans are easiest to find through banks that work with the SBA.

In general, banks offer better terms than most alternative lenders. They also take more time to approve business loan applicants and they hold their borrowers to a higher standard.


Chase is a great bank for small business owners looking for a loan. It’s one of the most experienced banks out there and is particularly good at servicing small businesses.

One of Chase’s most well-rounded and valuable business financing options is the Chase Ink Business Preferred credit card. This card offers great rewards for businesses, particularly for business owners who travel often.

Chase is also a great option overall. Their fees are agreeable when they cannot be avoided by maintaining certain balances. There are usually options to dodge their fees. Also, they’re a popular bank with locations across the US.

Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo may not have the cleanest reputation, but it’s still one of the best options for small business loans. As a matter of fact, Wells Fargo has the most branches of any bank offering SBA loans. They’re also the largest SBA loan provider in the US.

If you work with Wells Fargo, you have access to many business financing options. Should you need advice or further assistance, they have a strong reputation for customer service. Of course, they do charge a hefty price for their expertise.

The Best Online Small Business Lenders

While some banks are amazing at what they do for small businesses, they aren’t the right option for every small business owner. 

If you need a loan very fast, banks won’t be your best option. They usually take a couple of weeks or longer to approve a small business loan. Many online lenders take a few days or less.

Perhaps more importantly, online lenders are far more accessible than traditional banks and credit unions. They offer a wide range of services for business borrowers with different credit scores and financial histories. Even if you have a low credit score and limited business experience, they will have something to offer you. You might not get the best terms, but you’ll certainly have access to funds.


OnDeck is an alternative business lender that services thousands of businesses across hundreds of industries. They are accredited by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating.

The primary products that OnDeck offers are business term loans and business lines of credit. The APRs on their loans are low, as far as online and alternative lenders go. Their business lines of credit only carry a 13.99% APR.

If you want a loan from OnDeck, the basic requirements are:

  • A minimum credit score of 600
  • At least one year in business
  • Minimum annual revenue of $100,000


FundBox is an online lender that is more accessible to business owners with lower credit scores and businesses dependent on invoices. They are also very fast at approving loans, making them a good option when you’re in a rush.

FundBox offers a business line of credit, but the APR on the one they give you will depend on your credit score and business financial information. Their APRs can be as low as 10%, but they can also go well above 50%.

A business line of credit is a diverse and flexible option. FundBox’s line of credit is appropriate for improving cash flow by covering expenses that you can’t immediately afford. You can draw funds for whatever business purpose you need to.

The requirements for a loan from FundBox are:

  • A minimum credit score of 500
  • Minimum annual revenue of $50,000
  • At least three months’ invoicing history

The Best Small Business Lenders: Things To Keep In Mind

Regardless of which lender you choose, it’s your responsibility to learn and understand the terms you plan to accept. Take your time to assess the benefits and costs associated with any particular loan. Make sure you have a good plan for paying them back on time, or you will face interest costs and your credit score may take a hit.

If you’re having trouble getting approved by the best small business lenders, you should try to improve your credit score. That takes some time, but a good option would be to use a line of credit responsibly. By constantly drawing funds and paying them back on time, you can raise your score.

Not sure where to go for a business loan? Read these quick & helpful guides:
Check out our preferred marketplace lenders.

Lender Minimum Revenue Time in Business Minimum Credit Next Steps
$100K/year 1 year 600+ See if you qualify
$10,000/mo 3 mo. n/a See if you qualify
$10,000/mo 3 mo. n/a See if you qualify
$75,000/yr 24 mo. 620+ Request Intro
Varies Varies 560+ See if you qualify

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