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Obtaining a Business Loan When Your Credit Rating is Poor

Written by: Rebecca Game

Poor credit, unfortunately, is a common problem for many women. Poor credit can happen for a variety of reasons. It can be due to a divorce, when bills weren't paid on time or at all. It can be due to a medical disaster, where bills have piled up so high that paying them has become impossible, and credit scores have dropped accordingly. It can be due to a job loss or lack of income and the inability to pay bills.

Whatever the reason, it may also mean that you'll have difficulty obtaining a business loan. However, it doesn't mean that obtaining a loan for your business is impossible or completely out of reach. A bad credit loan may be the key to pulling yourself out of financial problems and getting back on track in order to focus on your business needs.

There are many programs and lenders that specialize in bad credit loans. Because someone with poor credit is viewed as a high risk to lenders, business loans for these individuals are virtually impossible to obtain. However, by becoming creative and resourceful, obtaining a bad credit loan for business purposes is definitely possible.

- Refinance your home for cash out, or consider a home equity loan. Most commonly, and probably most easily obtained, a bad credit loan for business purposes can be approved for someone with credit that's not ideal if they are property owners. According to Targetwoman.com, approximately 20 percent of all adults are not able to get a conventional mortgage due to their poor credit rating.

If you're one of these individuals, you're not alone. Don't feel completely embarrassed about it, but rather, be aware of it, and search for loan sources that specialize in bad credit loans. Use your home ownership status to your advantage. You'll pay a higher interest rate, but by refinancing your home and getting back on track, you'll have the opportunity to repair your credit by making your payments on time, thus rebuilding your credit and allowing yourself the opportunity to refinance again down the road at a lower interest rate.

- Apply for a collateral loan. Bad credit loans normally require some type of collateral, reassuring the lender that in the event that the loan is not repaid, they won't lose all of the money they loaned. Collateral also puts stress on you to pay your loan payments on time, or risk losing the item(s) that you used for collateral. Signature loans are virtually impossible in which to be approved if your credit is poor. However, a bad credit loan can be obtained by using items for collateral, such as snowmobiles, ATVs, boats, cars, trucks, motorcycles, artwork, or other appraisable items or items in which a fair market value can be given.

Obviously, because the value of these items is not as great as for a home, the loan value will be less. However, a small loan can help get your business ideas off the ground, and will allow you the opportunity to rebuild your credit so that future loans will be more easily obtained. As with mortgages, though, search for a lender specializing in bad credit loans.

- Ask a friend or relative to cosign on a loan. If your credit is poor and you don't have collateral and you don't own a home, options are not as widely available for bad credit loans. However, if you have a friend or relative that trusts you to repay the loan, another option is to consider asking that person to cosign the loan for you. By cosigning, that person is ensuring the lender that if you are unable to pay the loan yourself, the other person will take over the payments for you.

While this offers the lender stability and more of a guarantee that the loan will indeed be repaid in the event that you're not able to keep up the payments, approach this option cautiously. This type of bad credit loan will not work for everyone. In the event that you do not repay the loan, it can ruin a friendship or a relationship with the relative who cosigned on the bad credit loan.

- Seek a business investor. A business investor can often be a good way to bring money into a business as a type of or alternative to a bad credit loan. The money can be brought into the business as a bad credit loan, to be repaid in a given amount of time, or it can allow the investor to obtain partial ownership of the business. Normally, investors are looking to invest large sums into the business to obtain a high return. Developing a business proposal for an investor is usually necessary, but the rewards can be great in certain situations.

As with any type of loan, do your homework before applying for a bad credit loan. Consider all options that are available to you, and choose the option that best suits your situation and your business.

About the author:

Rebecca Game is the founder of Digital Women , an online community for women in business. A 30 year entrepreneur and dedicated to helping other women obtainbusiness loans. Visit her site: Loans for Women


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