LenCred business loans review July 2018 | finder.com

LenCred business loans review

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This online upstart focuses its financing for startups and small businesses in need of capital.

If your business reaches a point where it needs the gas of extra capital, you’re not alone. Among your many business financing options are online lenders that can match you to a network of vetted lenders willing to extend the exact hand you need.

LenCred is one such matchmaker — though you won’t get your money instantaneously. Read on to find out if it can help your business succeed.

Product NameLenCred Business Loans
Min Loan Amount$20,000
Max. Loan Amount$200,000
Interest Rate TypeVariable
  • In business no more than 3 years
  • Personal credit score of 660+
  • Annual business revenue of up to $300,000

Do I qualify for LenCred?

You might be a good fit for LenCred if:

  • You have a personal credit score of 660 or higher.
  • Your business makes up to $300,000 annually.
  • Your business has been around for up to three years.

What is LenCred?

LenCred is an online matching service that connects startups and small businesses with lenders in its network.

Whereas it previously offered only unsecured credit cards to businesses, it’s expanded its financing options into:

  • Business lines of credit. Get continual access to cash for unexpected expenses or to make up for off-seasons.
  • SBA loans. Designed for businesses that don’t qualify for other financing, these government-guaranteed fixed-term loans and lines of credit come with low interest rates.
  • Equipment financing. Used to pay for equipment only, these fixed-term loans require collateral and a down payment.
  • Merchant cash advances. Simply put, an advance on your future sales paid back through a percentage of your future sales.
  • Invoice factoring. Instead of an advance on future sales, this option advances a portion of your unpaid invoices in an exchange for a percentage of their value.
  • 401(k) financing. LenCred helps you navigate the complicated process of using a 401(k) to finance a small business. But unless your business has an impeccable financial history, it’s generally not a great option — and risks losing your retirement fund.

What makes LenCred business loans unique?

Instead of weighing only your loan amount and immediate needs to match you to a lender, LenCred considers aspects of your business’s profile that include your location, industry and credit history.

To optimize your application, LenCred can help you put together a funding plan — personalized service that’s particularly useful for young businesses without the experience of getting a loan.

What are the benefits of getting a LenCred business loan?

  • Walks you through the process. LenCred makes applying easy by closely guiding new borrowers to a specific loan for their business.
  • Wide-ranging resources. You can access a literal library of information about business loans through its site.
  • Personalized matches. LenCred matches businesses with lenders that make the most sense for your business.

What to watch out for

Matching services often turn a profit on lender partnership deals. Sometimes these lenders pay a fee for every interested borrower sent their way. With such a business model, your business’s concerns might not always be top priority.

Consider these other possible drawbacks to borrowing from LenCred:

  • Extremely poor support. Getting in touch with LenCred isn’t easy. They gave us the runaround for over a week when it came to answering basic questions — and other customers have similar complaints.
  • Not forthcoming about rates and terms. LenCred doesn’t list much information online about its partners’ rates and terms, and it did not respond to our attempts to contact a rep through customer service channels.
  • You’re restricted to its network. LenCred connects businesses with its network of partners only, meaning your options are limited.
  • Long turnaround. Customers describe a lending process that can take up to 60 days or more.
  • Barebones site. It’s difficult to find rates, terms or other aspects of its lending network online. A potential red flag for an online lender.

LenCred fees

While most business loan connection services are free for users, that’s not always the case with LenCred. Some lenders pay LenCred a fee for using its service, but pass that cost on to the borrower with a more expensive loan.

If you go for a lower-cost loan, you’ll likely need to cover the financing fee of $2,000 to $2,500 yourself. The fee only applies after you get approved for your funds, so there are no upfront costs.

Compare business loans from top lenders

Rates last updated July 16th, 2018
Name Product Product Description Min Loan Amount Max. Loan Amount Requirements
LoanBuilder, A PayPal Service Business Loans
Customizable loans with no origination fee for business owners in a hurry.
$5,000
$500,000
Annual business revenue of at least $42,000, at least 9 months in business, personal credit score of 550+.
LendingClub Business Loans
With loan terms that vary from 1 to 5 years, enjoy fixed monthly payments and no prepayment penalties through this award-winning lender.
$5,000
$300,000
2+ years in business; $50,000+ in yearly sales; No bankruptcies or tax liens; At least 20% ownership of your business; Fair or better personal credit
Excel Capital Management Small Business Loans
Get personalized financing options that suit your unique business needs in just a few simple steps.
Varies by loan type
Varies by loan type
Your business must operate in the US, be at least 1 year old and have monthly revenue of $15,000+.
Kabbage Small Business Line of Credit
A simple, convenient online application could securely get the funds you need to grow your business.
$2,000
$250,000
Must have been in business for at least 1 year. Revenue minimum is $50,000 annually or $4,200 per month over the last 3 months.
OnDeck Small Business Loans
A leading online business lender offering flexible financing at competitive fixed rates.
$5,000
$500,000
Must have been in business for at least one year with annual revenue of $100K+. Must have a personal credit score of 500+.
National Business Capital Business Loans
Get a large business loan to cover your financing needs, no matter what the purpose is. Startups welcome with 680+ credit score.
$10,000
$5,000,000
Your company must have been in business for at least 6 months and have an annual revenue of at least $180,000.
Lending Express Business Loan Marketplace
$5,000
$500,000
At least 3 months in business and $10,000+ in monthly revenue. Your business might also qualify if it's been in business at least 6 months with $3,000+ in monthly revenue.
Fora Financial Business Loans
No minimum credit score requirement and early repayment discounts for qualifying borrowers.
$5,000
$500,000
Business age 6+ months. Monthly revenue $12,000+. No open bankruptcies.
Balboa Capital Small Business Loan
Short-term business financing with no minimum credit score or physical paperwork required.
$2,500
$250,000
Must make $300,000 in annual revenue and be established for at least one year prior.
LendingTree Business Loans
Compare multiple business financing options in one place including: small business loans, lines of credit, SBA loans, equipment financing and more.
Varies by lender and type of financing
Varies by lender and type of financing
Varies by lender, but you many require good personal credit, a minimum business age and minimum annual revenue.

Compare up to 4 providers

Is borrowing from LenCred safe?

Yes. More than 200 Trustpilot users rate LenCred a 9.8 out of 10, with 96% calling it “Excellent.” The main draw for TrustPilot reviewers? Customer service and an overall easy application. (Though, interestingly, goes against the poor support we personally received.)

LenCred is also accredited by the Better Business Bureau, which rates it an A+ based on its own criteria. There aren’t many user reviews on the BBB website, but almost all praise LenCred’s customer service.

Am I eligible?

LenCred doesn’t cite set-in-stone eligibility requirements. However, the following borrowers could find the best results:

  • A credit score of 660 or higher. Good credit will likely result in more favorable loans through LenCred.
  • Businesses that make up to $250,000 annually. LenCred doesn’t require a specific revenue, but it’s most interested in helping small businesses and startups.
  • Businesses around up to three years. LenCred is less interested in helping out established businesses.

How do I apply?

  1. Go to LenCred’s site and enter your name, phone number, email and time zone. Click Apply Now.
    Lencred apply image, step one
  2. Within minutes, a LenCred resource specialist will email or call for a consultation about your business’s credit history and needs.
  3. After your specialist looks into your options, they’ll contact you to discuss potential lenders and set up a plan to maximize your chances of getting your best deal.
  4. Apply for a loan with the lender according to the financing plan, and receive your funds if you’re accepted.

This whole process can take up to 30 days, though turnaround varies by lender.

What documents do I need to apply?

LenCred won’t ask for documentation, but the lender it matches you with will.

Among other documents, expect to submit:

  • Government-issued ID. Most lenders want to see a driver’s license or passport to verify your identity.
  • Proof of business ownership. You might need to provide articles of incorporation, your business license or other documents to prove ownership.
  • Verification of business finances. Your lender may ask to see bank statements or tax returns that show how much your business makes annually.

I got the LenCred business loan. Now what?

Two things happen once you get your loan: interest begins accumulating and repayments are due.

Consider setting up autopay so that you don’t inadvertently miss repayments — some lenders require automatic repayments, while others might offer a discount.

You might also want to check whether your lender charges prepayment penalties. If not, try paying your loan off as quickly as possible to avoid unnecessary interest.

If you run into any unexpected financial troubles down the line, contact your lender immediately. They might be willing to renegotiate your terms — or even give you a brief grace period — to help you get back on track.

Bottom line

LenCred is a resource for small and new businesses with little experience applying for a loan. But its lengthy turnaround and frustrating website could turn off some potential borrowers.

Before you decide on lender, compare as many options as you can to find the best match for your business.

Frequently asked questions

Anna Serio

Anna Serio is a staff writer untangling everything you need to know about personal loans, including student, car and business loans. She spent five years living in Beirut, where she was a news editor for The Daily Star and hung out with a lot of cats. She loves to eat, travel and save money.

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