Merchant Cash Advance – How Does it Compare to a Bank Loan and is it Better For a Small Business?
However, the economic slowdown is not the only reason merchant cash advance providers are thriving today. They are offering services that are much more business-friendly than regular banks with stringent loan regulations.
The approval cycle for getting an advance from a merchant cash advance provider is quite short. It takes 24-48 hours for the advance to be approved. If the borrowing party has done business with the provider before, the cash is transferred into the business account within 2 days.
If the business goes to a bank, the loan approval cycle itself takes months. This is an impossible wait for a business that is already crippled with low finances. A merchant cash advance provides the immediate boost needed for the business to recover and resume operations. Bank loans are too archaic to be useful, especially if you need the cash within a short period.
As opposed to loans, cash advances are not paid back in monthly installments or on fixed dates. Merchant cash advance providers get their money back by getting a cut of the credit card sales of the business. A percentage of the credit card sales is paid to the provider till all the debt is paid off.
The amount paid to the provider will vary with the amount of credit sales made during a time period. This is acceptable to the cash advance providers and there is no penalty for a slump in sales. Some providers are so flexible that they do not ask for payments during slow months.
There is no such flexibility with a bank loan. Even if the bank understands the predicament of the business, penalties will still be levied for late payments.
Only business guarantees
Merchant cash advance is approved for a business and is not directly linked with the business owner. The business owner does not have to provide information on personal collateral or give personal guarantees for repayment of the cash advance. The merchant cash advance provider has a direct stake in the business, and repayment is only dependent on the credit card sales.
Business owners may have to provide personal guarantees when obtaining a business loan from a bank. If the business suffers and is unable to generate revenue to repay the loan, the business owner is also in a soup.
Comparable interest rates
Banks have taken a hit in the economic crisis. Almost all the banks have increased the interest rates on loans, implemented stricter lending standards and generally made it very tough for a business to get a loan.
Though the charges of merchant cash advance providers are higher compared to bank loans, the gap has been considerably lessened by the increase in bank loan rates.
Banks are losing their footing in the business loans market as their application process is too time-consuming and tedious to allow immediate financing of hard hit businesses. With the advantages of speed, convenience and flexibility, the merchant cash advance industry is fast gaining popularity in this credit crisis.
Daljeet Sidhu is at TradeSeam. Read our merchant loan advice. Compare loan for business quotes. Sellers JOIN for leads generation.View all articles by Daljeet Sidhu
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