Square Capital business loans review
Invitation-only funding based on your Square sales.
Bottom line: Square Capital only works with businesses that use its point of sale system. And even then, it’s unclear exactly what requirements your business will need to meet to qualify. So while Square loans are convenient, watch out for an opaque system and high costs. Read the full review or get our 30-second take.
- Loans as low as $300
- No personal guarantee
- Funding as soon as the next business day
- Invitation-only application
- Minimum repayments due every 60 days
- Not transparent about costs
Our take on square capital
Square Capital is an invitation-only advance on the sales retailers make through Square's point of sale (POS) system. It's essentially a merchant cash advance, meaning that you pay a fixed fee rather than interest and repay the funds with a percentage of your daily sales. This makes it better suited for retailers, restaurants and other businesses that regularly process credit card payments.
Rather than relying on credit, Square Capital mainly looks at your sales history. And with loans starting at $300, it can be an easy option for struggling businesses that need to cover an emergency expense or just want to expand.
But cash advances are traditionally more expensive than other types of business financing — and Square isn't transparent about the costs. Make sure you understand how it compares to other products that your business is eligible for before you sign up.
Fast short-term business loans for current Square users
Square loans are meant for short-term expenses that your business may face. The loan amount, fee and daily repayment percentage are largely based on the sales your business processes using Square.
Businesses that process well over $10,000 a year in Square sales, process every day and have a healthy mix of old and new customers are more likely to get a loan similar to what it advertises online.
Current Square users can borrow between $300 and $250,000 with a standard term of 18 months.
One flat fee — but daily payments required
Square Capital loans come with a fixed fee instead of interest, which you repay plus the loan balance with a percentage of your daily sales on Square. It doesn’t disclose the range of fees it charges.
The examples Square highlights on its website don't state the approximate APR or the loan term. However, users are given the loan amount, fee and total repayment. Using Square's examples, the fee is equivalent to 14.5% of the advance. But your fee could vary widely.
With the default 18-month term Square offers, this is equivalent to an APR of about 18.5% — high for a business loan, but still competitive for a cash advance.
How Square compares to other lenders
Square loans have a limited reach. If you aren't a Square user — or haven't been offered a loan through its platform — another short-term lender like OnDeck or Kabbage may be a better choice for your business.
To browse lenders, select your annual revenue, time in business and your personal credit score range. Make sure to only apply with lenders that have requirements your business meets, or your application will be rejected.
Square Capital Funding reviews are a mixed bag
|BBB customer reviews||1.07 out of 5 stars, based on 395 customer reviews|
|BBB customer complaints||4,926 customer complaints|
|Trustpilot Score||4.8 out of 5 stars, based on 1,257 customer reviews|
|Customer reviews verified as of||24 August 2021|
Square Capital gets mostly positive customer reviews, but reviews of its parent company are nearly all negative. Customers praise how fast and seamless the Square Capital application and repayment process is. But many have had issues with the quality of Square’s customer service, especially when a problem arose. A few also complain about the inconsistency of Square Capital’s loan offers.
No set eligibility requirements
This loan is invitation only — you can only apply if you see an offer on your Square Dashboard.
While there are no eligibility requirements your business specifically needs to meet, you're more likely to qualify if you meet the following criteria:
- At least one sale using Square’s point of sale system per week
- At least $10,000 in annual sales through Square
- Have a mix of new and returning customers
How the application works
Square Capital generally requires less information than your typical business loan. You need to provide your business’s tax identification number or your Social Security number if you’re a sole proprietor. And you need to give contact information and a state-issued ID for all business owners.
You can only apply online if you’ve received an invitation from Square. Log on to your Square account and visit your Square Dashboard.
If you see a notification to apply for a Square Capital loan, click on the link. From here, review your offer and follow the instructions to fill out an application and submit any documents.
Filling out the application typically only takes a few minutes. If your business is approved, Square Capital will send you loan documents to review and sign. You should receive your funds as soon as the next business day.
Square Capital loans are automatically repaid
Square Capital charges a percentage of your daily sales through its point of sales system. This means everything is automatic — and your daily payments reflect your business's revenue. But regardless of sales, you must repay at least 12.5% of your loan balance every 60 days. The loan plus the fee is due in full after 18 months.
If your business can’t make the minimum payment based on Square sales alone, Square will automatically deduct the remaining amount from your bank account.
Watch for new offers while you repay the loan. Square Capital could extend a new loan offer to you once you’re close to repaying your initial loan. If you need access to more funding, you may have the option to take out another advance.
The Square point of sale system sets it apart
To get access to Square loans, you'll need to be a regular user of the Square POS system. You can also take advantage of Square Cash and Square Payroll in addition to its loans.
- Square Point of Sale is software that combines payment processing, digital receipts and inventory management to allow for smooth merchant to customer interactions. Square’s point-of-sale system accepts credit cards, cash, checks, gift cards and mobile payments.
- Square Cash is a person-to-person money transfer service that operates through the Square Cash app or by email. Sending and receiving money is free for personal use, while businesses pay 1.5% to receive payments.
- Square Payroll is a small business tool that streamlines the employee payroll process with digital time cards, online employee accounts, automatic direct deposit and tax filing services.
Square loans are legit
Square Capital is a legitimate lender. You can view its state licenses online and it takes basic steps to protect your information, like password-protecting your account. All loans are issued by Celtic Bank, which is a member of the FDIC an active SBA lender — meaning that it meets federal standards.