First American Merchant business loans review
Find a merchant cash advance through this connection service even if you’re in a high-risk industry.
- Best for high-risk, consumer-facing industries.
- Pick something else if you can qualify for a traditional business loan.
|Product Name||First American Merchant cash advances|
|Min. Credit Score||500|
|Requirements||Six months in business, 500+ credit score, $10,000+ gross monthly deposits, no more than 3 NSFs per month on your bank statements.|
Anna Serio is a trusted lending expert and certified Commercial Loan Officer who's published more than 950 articles on Finder to help Americans strengthen their financial literacy. A former editor of a newspaper in Beirut, Anna writes about personal, student, business and car loans. Today, digital publications like Business Insider, CNBC and the Simple Dollar feature her professional commentary, and she earned an Expert Contributor in Finance badge from review site Best Company in 2020.
First American Merchant is a connection service that specializes in merchant cash advances, which offer an advance on your business’s future credit card sales or deposits.
It could be a good choice if you’ve struggle to qualify for a loan because of your industry or credit score. It even has options for the cannabis industry.
But merchant cash advances are high-cost compared to other financing options — think APRs of 300% or higher. This service is generally best for when you’ve considered all other options.
Still on the fence? Check out our list of other lenders to find one that’s right for you.
Through the ACH business funding program, you can typically get an advance based on around four months of gross deposits into your business’s checking account. With the cash advance program, your advance is usually based on a three- to six-month average of your business’s credit card sales.
It doesn’t check your credit score when you apply, so that won’t affect your rates and terms.
What do I need to qualify?
First American Merchant doesn’t disclose specific requirements for its cash advance program. But to qualify for an ACH advance, you must meet the following requirements:
- Personal credit score of 500 or higher
- At least six months in business
- At least $10,000 in gross monthly deposits
- Less than three nonsufficient funds per month listed on your bank statement
You may be able to qualify for a cash advance even if you don’t meet these requirements, depending on your credit card sales.
What information do I need to apply?
You’ll need to have the following information when you apply for an advance through First American Merchant:
- Copy of your driver’s license
- Voided check or bank letter
- Copy of your business’s lease
- Three months of bank statements
- Three months of credit card processing statements
What industries does First American Merchant work with?
First American Merchant works with a wider range of industries than your average provider. It can find funding for businesses in high-risk industries like construction and alcohol sales. And it even has a special program for cannabis businesses.
What other types of financing does First American Merchant offer?
First American Merchant also has a point-of-sale financing solution for your customers and a special cash advance program specifically for the cannabis industry.
Medical marijuana merchant cash advances
Some of First American Merchant’s partners offer merchant cash advances to medical marijuana companies. You can apply as you would through the cash advance or ACH advance program, but loans are limited to between $2,500 and $100,000.
Consumer financing through First American Merchant
First American Merchant also offers financing that your customers can use to make purchases. Through this program, your customers can borrow up to $5,000 with a loan term of 3, 6 or 12 months, and your business will get paid in full within three days of the purchase.
Pros and cons
Weigh the benefits and drawbacks of working with this service before you sign up.
- Works with all credit types
- Available to high-risk industries
- Turnaround as soon as the same day
- Not transparent about rates and terms
- Not a direct lender
- Traditionally high-cost product
Compare other alternative business loan providers
Is First American Merchant legit?
Yes, First American Merchant is a legitimate connection service. It’s licensed by the California Department of Business Oversight and it’s also a member of the Electronic Transactions Association (ETA), which sets industry standards for companies that process online payments.
Does First American Merchant get good customer reviews?
|Customer reviews verified as of||15 September 2020|
There are no online reviews of First American Merchant on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) or Trustpilot. However, it gets an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), which it’s been accredited with since 2016.
Previously, it had one customer review on its BBB page, which was a complaint about giving First American Merchant their bank login credentials before being rejected. First American Merchant responded, explaining the application process and why that borrower was rejected.
How do I sign up?
You can either get started on your application through its website or over the phone. To apply over the phone, call 800-210-5649. Follow these steps to apply online:
- Go to the First American Merchant website.
- Click Get started.
- Enter basic information about your business and its website and the type of funding you’d like to apply for and click Continue.
- Enter your contact information and create a password. Read the disclosures before hitting Continue.
- Follow the directions to fill out more details about your business and upload documents before signing and submitting your application.
What happens after I sign up?
After you send in your application, wait for First American Merchant to submit applications on your behalf to a handful of its partner lenders that it thinks might best meet your business’s needs. It should get back to you with offers within a day or two.
Once you receive your offers, you can submit any additional documentation if you decide to go through with a lender. Review the terms and conditions before you sign the contract.
You can get your funds as soon as the same business day in some cases. But merchant cash advances typically take around three days to get your funds, while ACH loans can take at least five days.
How do repayments work?
Most businesses start to make daily repayments through a percentage of your daily sales — whether that be credit card transactions or deposits into your business bank account. But some might qualify for repayments once or twice a week, or even once a month.
Regularly check in on your bank account and loan balance to make sure everything is running smoothly. If you have any questions or notice an error, reach out to customer service as soon as possible by calling 800-210-5649.
Read our guide to business loans to see how First American Merchant stacks up to other lenders.