Will Inland Empire SMBs Finally See the Capital They Need?
(Inland Empire) – Depending on what “expert” you listen to the economy is either recovering, or has recovered or is going back into recession. Whatever side of the fence you are on, it seems small business owners are struggling more and more to stay afloat. Who can blame them when gas prices have been going up for 11 consecutive days?
The Small Business Jobs and Credit Act, which was signed into law last month, is supposed to aid small businesses gain more capital, and start hiring. The Wall Street Journal points out that SMBs are, “a sector that nationally employs almost half of all Americans and is crucial to job creation.”
The SBA as a result has been able to increase the amounts of loans they are able to give. “Over the last 18 months, Congress has tripled the amount available for microloans to $75 million nationwide. This week, the SBA moved to funnel more of that money to the lenders that grant the loans and increased the maximum amount of the loans themselves. Borrowers can now get up to $50,000 at a time, up from $35,000 previously.”
According to Roberto Barragan, president of Valley Economic Development Center Inc., located in Southern California, the average microloan is around $12,000, and he expects to use the new federal money to make loans to local businesses that are desperate for cash. For now, he figures, most of the microloans will remain small.”
Although this is great news, it is wise to look at other forms of lending as well. There are plenty of choices that aren’t related to SBA loans or bank loans to get the capital your company may desperately need.
Also known as P2P lending, is a non-profit organization that helps connect you to lenders online. Think eHarmony, but for investors. Prosper, LendingClub and Peer-Lend are some great places to start. P2P lending is a great place to start your search for small loans, and an alternative to microloans. These environments are a great way to get the capital you need, and is also a great investment opportunity for the everyday Joe.
“It just felt like it [savings account] was doing nothing. It was as good as putting it under my mattress,” says Jennifer Stitzel to the Wall Street Journal, who works for a medical-device company in Seattle and has seen her investment grow by about 13% since February. “I’m not a philanthropist. This is an investment for me.”
Competitive Banking Markets
Sites like LendingTree are also a great choice. Because banks are put in a competitive environment, you will be able to get the best loan for your company. E-Loan is a similar site to help get the capital you need.
iBank provides you with a commercial lending marketplace for business loans. They have over 335 lenders to help you in your search.
Venture Capitalist and Angle Investors
If you need more than just a small loan to get you by, VC loans/angle investors can be a great option. If you don’t know any VCs or angle investors personally, don’t worry there are plenty of sites to get you started. Similar to P2P sites, there are networking sites dedicated to helping people connect to the right investor. FundingPost, vFincance and MyCapital are good places to start.
There are plenty of opportunities to find the capital you need to start your business, or keep it afloat. You just need to know where to start your search. The new Small Business Jobs and Credit Act is a great jumpstart. Looking for alternative funding is also another way to get out of the stronghold banks used to have on the lending industry.
Shannon Suetos is an expert writer on phone systems based in San Diego, California. She writes extensively for an online resource that provides expert advice on purchasing and outsourcing decisions for small business owners and entrepreneurs such as VoIP service at Resource Nation.