Newtek business loans review
SBA 7(a) and 504 loans from this top online lender.
finder.com’s rating: 3.83 / 5.0
Bottom line: Newtek is one of the few SBA-preferred online lenders — and it accepts business owners with fair credit. But like all SBA programs, it may take weeks to compelte the application process.
- Most active online 7(a) lender in the country
- Works with fair credit and high-risk industries
- 24/7 customer service
- Low starting rate of 6%.
- Turnaround of six to eight weeks]
- Might require a down payment
- No loans under $10,000
- Terms start at seven years
Newtek rates, fees and terms
The rates, loan amounts and terms depend on the loan program. The SBA caps interest rates on its 7(a) loans at 8% and the bank portion of 504 loans at 9.75% — though this doesn’t include the SBA guarantee fee. Newtek's rates start at the prime rate + 2.75% — or around 6% APR. You can borrow between $10,000 and $10,000,000 with terms from 7 to 25 years.
Other factors like your personal credit score, time in business and revenue can affect the rate, term and loan amount you qualify for. You may also have to make a down payment on the business expense you want to fund — though that’s not always the case. For example, startups are required to make a 30% down payment. And business acquisitions require a 10% down payment.
You can use the calculator to find out how much your loan might cost you.
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|Loan terms (in years)|
How Newtek compares to other lenders
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Newtek reviews and complaints
|BBB customer reviews||1 out of 5 stars, based on 11 customer reviews|
|BBB customer complaints||3 customer complaints|
|Customer reviews verified as of||12 October 2020|
Newtek only has a handful of negative reviews on the Better Business Bureau and none on Trustpilot. Most are from customers who felt misled by the terms that Newtek originally offered or were surprised by SBA loan fees. But these likely don’t tell the whole story. Since Newtek is one of the most active 7(a) lenders, it appears that most borrowers don’t feel the need to leave a review.
How to qualify
You and your business must meet the following requirements for a Newtek term loan:
- Personal credits core of 650 or higher
- At least two years of tax returns
- Based in the US
- Cash flow to repay the loan
While Newtek prefers to work with business owners who have a 650 credit score, it can be flexible.
Be aware of SBA requirements
On top of these requirements, you also need to meet SBA requirements for the type of loan you’re applying for. This can include size standards that vary by industry and showing that you’ve been able to get funding elsewhere.
If an owner has a criminal record or has defaulted on a government loan, it could also affect your eligibility.
What information do I need to apply?
SBA loans typically come with a laundry list of documents and forms. This can include:
- Personal financial statements for all owners
- Two or three years of business tax returns
- Business bank statements
- Profit and loss statements
- Financial projections
- Business plan
You’ll likely need to provide additional documents, though it varies depending on the loan and business.
What industries does Newtek work with?
Newtek doesn’t list any restricted industries, but businesses in what are typically considered high-risk industries can qualify. This includes wholesalers, construction, retail, manufacturing and the service industry.
But you’ll need to meet SBA requirements, which can restrict businesses involved in gambling, adult entertainment, political activity and life insurance.
How the application works
To get started, you'll need to prequalify for a loan online. Newtek will request your contact information and basic details about your company. A loan specialist should be in touch within one to two business days to discuss the loan amounts and rates you prequalify for.
Your loan specialist guides you through the rest of the application process, including submitting documents and providing additional information about your business. Lines of credit typically take less time — two to three weeks — while term loans can take six to eight weeks from start to finish.
SBA term loans come with fixed monthly repayments, based on your loan amount, term and rate. Go over your repayment options with your account manager to find one that meets your business’s needs.
What other business financing does Newtek offer?
In addition to term loans, Newtek also offers business lines of credit. These are secured by either your business’s accounts receivables or inventory.
Credit limits range from $50,000 to $1.5 million — or up to 80% of the value of your accounts receivable. Credit lines backed by inventory range from $50,000 to $500,000 — or 50% of your inventory’s value. Both come with renewable one-year terms.
What sets it apart?
Newtek is one of the most active SBA lenders and one of the few that operates wholly online. It offers loans in all 50 states, and in addition to loans, it offers a wide variety of other services, including merchant services and technology for your business.
Is Newtek legit?
Yes, Newtek is a legitimate lender. It’s an SBA-preferred lender, which means the government has authorized it to process SBA applications itself. This can save on turnaround time. While there isn’t a lot of information online, its customer service team is ready to answer questions at any time.
It takes steps to protect your information from hackers by providing a secure website and storing information in password-protected servers. But like with any other website, there’s no way to guarantee the information you submit online is 100% secure.
Read our comprehensive guide to business loans to weigh the benefits of other lenders and learn more about the process.
Frequently asked questions
Business loan ratings
We rate business loan providers on a scale of 1 to 5 stars based on factors like transparency, costs and customer experience. We don’t take into account elements like eligibility criteria, state availability or payment frequency — we save that for our reviews.
Read the full methodology of how we rate business loan providers to get a better picture of what goes into each star rating.
Anna Serio is a trusted lending expert and certified Commercial Loan Officer who's published more than 1,000 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.
Newtek is one of the most active online SBA lenders in the country. In fact, it’s the only online lender that makes the SBA’s the top 10 list of the most active 7(a) lenders. It has lower credit requirements than you might find with other 7(a) or 504 lenders. And it works with industries that banks might consider high-risk, like wholesaling and construction.
Customer service is also its strong suit: It’s one of the few lenders that offers 24/7 customer support, and you’re assigned a personal account manager that’s familiar with your case to provide direct assistance. And it offers a wide range of products that extend beyond loans, from providing HR professionals to supplying point-of-sale terminals.
Its long terms and high loan amounts make it ideal for funding a large project. But the high starting amount and turnaround of six to eight weeks means it’s not ideal for funding a quick, one-off expense.