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What to know about no-credit-check business loans

Invoice factoring, merchant cash advances and more options that might not require a credit check.

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When your credit score has taken a hit, your business loan options are limited. Luckily, there are several types of business financing that don’t require a credit check at all. However, these options can often be more expensive compared to your typical business loan and might not be right for every business.

What’s a no-credit-check business loan?

A no-credit-check business loan is a type of business financing where the lender doesn’t consider your credit score during the application process. It’s typically short-term financing and can cost more than other options out there.

Often, no-credit-check business loans don’t work like your typical unsecured term loan. Most require some kind of collateral or a personal guarantee. Others might take different risk factors into account, like your clients’ credit scores.

Compare a selection of no-credit-check business loan providers

Name Product Filter Values Loan amount APR Requirements
First Down Funding business loans
First Down Funding business loans
$5,000 – $300,000
Fee Based
At least 1 year in business, an annual revenue of $100,000+, and a minimum credit score of 400
Alternative financing up to $300K with highly competitive rates.
Fora Financial business loans
Fora Financial business loans
$5,000 – $500,000
1+ year in business, $12,000+ monthly revenue, no open bankruptcies
No minimum credit score requirement and early repayment discounts for qualifying borrowers.
Fundbox business loans
Fundbox business loans
$1,000 – $100,000
4.99
You must have an established business.
Get flat rate, short-term financing based on the financial health of your business, not your credit score.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Types of business financing that might not need a credit check

Some lenders don’t advertise loans with no credit checks — sometimes it’s just the nature of that type of financing. If you don’t want lenders to consider your credit score, start by looking into the following options.

Invoice factoring

Invoice factoring is a cashflow solution for businesses that rely on invoices from other businesses or government agencies. Here, your business sells its invoices due within the next 30 to 90 days at a discount to a factoring company.

Factoring companies don’t check business owners’ credit scores, though they might consider your clients’. But not always. That’s because many companies require your business to repurchase any invoices that your clients fail to pay, making it even less risky for them.

Find the right type of invoice factoring for your business

Invoice financing

Invoice financing is similar to invoice factoring but has some key differences. Instead of an advance on your unpaid invoices, it’s a short-term loan based on the value of your invoices. Your company keeps control of collecting the invoices and pays off the loan as they’re filled. While invoice factoring charges a fee, invoice financing charges interest.

Some invoice financing lenders like Fundbox consider your credit score when you apply. But even those that do, typically don’t have minimum credit requirements, or give credit scores much weight.

How invoice financing works

Merchant cash advances

Merchant cash advances are for businesses that rely on credit card purchases — like retailers or restaurants. It’s an advance on your business’s future revenue, which you pay back plus a fee with a percentage of your daily sales. Since it’s based on revenue, most lenders typically care more about your business’s sales record than your personal credit score and don’t run a check.

Should your business get a merchant cash advance?

Equipment loans

Equipment loans are term loans specifically designed to help your business purchase new equipment. It’s a secured loan that uses the equipment as collateral.

While most equipment financing providers might do a credit check, many are willing to work with poor-credit borrowers. That’s because secured loans are less of a risk to the lender than unsecured loans, especially if your loan amount is based on the value of your equipment.

Compare your equipment financing options

Asset-based financing

Asset-based financing is a type of secured business loan that’s backed by anything your business already owns worth money. For example, your business can use equipment, vehicles or real estate as collateral for an asset-based loan.

Since your loan is backed by collateral, asset-based financing providers are often open to working with all credit types. Some might even forego the credit check.

How to use your assets to secure a business loan

Microloans from a nonprofit

If your business serves an economically disadvantaged community, it could qualify for microloans or other types of financing from a local nonprofit. Nonprofits typically don’t consider your personal credit history and if they do, most are willing to work with poor- or no-credit borrowers.

Microloans can be particularly useful to a small business that only needs a small amount of funds to get started or expand.

Where and how to get a business microloan

Rollover for Business Startups (ROBS)

ROBS is a type of financing that allows entrepreneurs to cover startup costs by using their retirement savings. It’s a complicated process that involves taking advantage of a tax loophole, and it can get expensive if you decide to hire help. But since you’re technically borrowing from yourself, there’s no need for a credit check.

How to finance your new business with a ROBS

Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter and GoFundMe allow businesses to raise funds from fans, friends and family. It can be a great way to fund a new project, especially one that’s easy to share on social media. Most platforms charge a percentage of the amount you raise as a fee, and some won’t let you collect donations unless you reach your fundraising goal. But it doesn’t consider your credit score when you sign up.

How crowdfunding works for small businesses

Bootstrapping

Investing some of your own money into your business is a surefire way to avoid credit checks. It can also look good when you’re applying for a business loan down the line — many lenders like to see that you’ve taken a personal risk yourself. Investors also often like to see that you have some skin in the game.

Friends and family

When all else fails, ask your friends and family to help finance your business. You can draw up a contract yourself or use a service like Loanable to make your terms legally binding. Since they already know you and your financial history, your credit score most likely won’t affect their decision.

Can I get a no-credit-check loan for my startup?

It’s possible, but not likely. Most startup-friendly loans tend to rely on the business owner’s credit to make up for the fact that your business doesn’t have a long record of revenue.

Unless you have enough money in a retirement plan to fund a new business with a ROBS, you might have a hard time finding a legitimate lender that’s willing to forego a credit check completely. That doesn’t necessarily mean you need to have excellent credit to qualify for a startup loan — though it helps. Here’s how startup funding works by credit score

Is a no-credit-check loan right for my business?

Even if you have a low credit score, a no-credit-check loan might not be the best financing option for your business. A lot of no-credit-check options are only available to specific types of businesses and are often more expensive than your traditional term loan. Consider your business type and your specific financing needs before looking for financing based on a credit check alone.

Your business could benefit if …

  • You have poor credit.You might not qualify for a more competitive rate from a lender that runs a credit check.
  • You want to apply for personal financing soon.Recent hard inquires don’t look good when you’re applying for a mortgage or other large personal loan.
  • You’re new to the country.When you have no credit history, you won’t qualify for a loan that runs a credit check. Or, consider building your credit score with a credit builder loan or service, like thoseoffered by Stilt.

Consider other options if …

  • You have good credit.Even if you need funds fast, you can likely find a better loan with an online lender that offers next-day funding but does a credit pull.
  • You need startup money.Startup financing tends to depend more on the owner’s credit rating than other types of business loans.
  • You don’t want to put up collateral.One way to beat the high rates on no-credit-check loans is to put up collateral. If you don’t want to, your options are limited and expensive.

Watch out for no-credit-check business loan scams

Some no-credit-check loans might sound too good to be true and that’s because they often are. Watch out for these red flags:

  • Guaranteed approval.No lender can guarantee that you and your business qualify before looking at your application.
  • Upfront fees.Legitimate lenders typically don’t ask borrowers to pay a fee before they even apply.
  • Fake accreditations.Stay away from lenders that advertise accreditations from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) or other trade organizations they aren’t members of.
How to avoid business loan scams

Bottom line

No-credit-check business loans can be one of the more expensive business loan options out there. Unless you need emergency cash, look into other options to get the best deal your business is eligible for. Get started by visiting our guide to business loans.

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