Where to Find A Business Loan to Fund Your Start-up Dream?

Singapore is home to one of the most dynamic, thriving and agile business communities on earth. Recognised as a leading commercial hub both regionally and globally, it’s a fantastic place to start a company. If you’ve got a business dream and the will to make it happen, often one of the biggest – and earliest – stumbling blocks is a lack of capital. Whether to acquire plant and equipment, purchase inventory or finance your everyday business operations, a business loan helps alleviate some of the financial difficulties faced by all new businesses during this vulnerable period. But where to get one? And what should I be looking for? Read on to find out more.

Look in the right places

Our country’s sophisticated financial market offers entrepreneurs a wealth of choices in how and where they look for a business loan. While large institutions such as banks are the most obvious source of business loans, often these institutions will refuse to provide a loan to a business below a certain age or annual turnover, or will simply only offer loan products that are unsuitable for your needs. Equally, many entrepreneurs turn to friends and family members for informal loans, but businesses in high-growth industries will quickly outstrip this source of income.

In this situation, finance companies and other professional lenders may provide the service that you require. Offering the flexibility and personalisation of a friendship loan with the scalability of a bank, they can be just the thing you’re looking for. Finance companies come in all shapes and sizes and may specialise in certain areas. Do your research before approaching a certain company to ensure that your philosophies are aligned and you meet their criteria.

Know what to ask for

Just as important as the who is the what. Once you’ve found the perfect loan company for your needs, research their product offering extensively. Many will offer specialised business loans which are tailored to your precise needs, meaning you don’t have to take a general personal loan. The terms of each individual loan product will differ, so it’s important to understand how the terms and conditions stack up compared to your own needs and requirements.

For more information on finding the right loan to help you grow and develop your business, speak to the loan consultants at Fast Money today and find out how we can help.

Where To Apply For Loan In Singapore

If you’re a business-owner or private individual looking for some additional capital in Singapore, you’ve got a huge number of options in terms of lenders. Singapore has become one of the world’s primary financial hubs in recent decades and offers an exceptional range of choice for entities seeking to borrow money.

But where to go? With so many to choose from, it becomes a process of elimination. Different institutions provide different services to different clients, so who to go with will largely depend on your own circumstances and what precisely you need the loan for. We’ve put together this handy guide to identifying the right lender for you. Read on to find out more.

Banks

Whether you visit a commercial or a retail bank will depend on whether the loan is for your private finances or for the development of your business. Generally, banks provide the highest loan amount and have the capability to provide lower interest rates than other sources, but generally have strict requirements for borrowers. These can include an excellent credit score, offering up sizable collateral such as real estate or a car, or meeting other repayment requirements. Businesses looking for loans here will generally need to be well-established and generating a profit, otherwise will be dismissed as too high risk.

Many of the world’s largest banks, including Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, Standard Chartered, Citibank operate in Singapore in addition to local players such as DBS Bank and United Overseas Bank, giving customers capable of applying to banks real choice in who they approach.

Moneylenders & private finance companies

There is also a significant private lending industry in Singapore, made up of a mixture of larger finance companies servicing a blend of private and corporate customers, as well as smaller moneylenders dealing primarily with individuals. Not being a bank, these organisations have greater flexibility in the terms and conditions as well as the loan products they can offer, but greater diversity increases the need for individuals to shop around and understand what they’re being offered. Finding the right loan product for you may take some significant research, as the Singapore finance industry is large and expanding.

It’s also important to note the importance of dealing with a licensed moneylender over an unlicensed, illegal moneylender. Licensed moneylenders can only charge a certain amount of interest per month. All licensed moneylenders are listed on the website of the Ministry of Law, allowing you to check before signing anything that the institution you’re working with is legitimate.

7 Questions to Ask When Applying for Instant Cash Loan

So you’ve decided to apply for an instant cash loan. When you start shopping around for a lender, it’s important to protect your interests, so ensure you have a clear idea in your mind of what you want, and come armed with the right questions. To help you get the facts you need to make the right decision, we’ve prepared a list of questions for you to bring with you that can help you sort the right lender from the herd. Read on to find out more.

  1. How certain of being approved am I?

This is one to ask yourself before you start the application process. Having a failed loan application on your credit report only hurts your long-term borrowing prospects, and can potentially negatively influence banks when you go looking for a loan for a larger purchase such as a car or a house. Being certain that you meet the lender’s requirements is a great way to protect your credit score.

  1. How fast is ‘instant’?

Some companies may advertise ‘instant’ loans, but only approve and fund the loan on the same day for a very select, elite group of clients. If you don’t meet these stringent credit requirements, it can sometimes take days or weeks to get the amount you need – which can make a huge difference when you really need that money instantly! Discuss your circumstances with the lender and make sure you qualify for the fastest possible funding.

  1. Are the advertised terms and conditions different from the ones for me?

On that note, it’s important to closely scrutinise all of the terms and conditions of the loan agreement just to ensure that they’re not different from those that were advertised. Similar to loan funding times, often only those with excellent credit scores will be granted the lowest advertised interest rate or the most favourable term, so be diligent.

  1. How will the lender pay me?

Is it a line of credit or a lump sum? If you need $2000 and the amount is provided in increments or over a period of time, that could be as bad as not having it at all.

  1. What are the repayment terms like?

Can you make partial repayments or must it be a lump sum? How do they accept payment? How long after a due date does the loan become delinquent? Knowing all of this upfront can save you a lot of confusion and heartache.

  1. For consolidation loans, is the new interest rate preferable?

If you’re using an instant cash loan to consolidate various other debts into one repayment, are you paying more in interest now than you were before between all of the unconsolidated debts? This could take some hard calculation, but it could potentially save you money.

  1. Is it a fixed or variable interest rate loan?

One of the most important questions, is the interest rate guaranteed to stay the same for the entire term of the loan, or will the interest rate be adjusted to account for fluctuations in the market?

Knowing the answers to these questions before signing could save a lot of time and hassle. If you have any questions, speak to one of the loan consultants at Fast Money and get the answers you need to make the smart decision.

Taking a Calculated Risk – How to Grow your Portfolio with Personal Loan

If you’ve spotted an opportunity to grow your wealth, it can often be difficult to find the capital to adequately exploit it. Most of us don’t have tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars lying around ready to be used, so we often turn to what’s known as leveraging, or gearing depending on your jurisdiction. This refers to the practice of borrowing funds to purchase an asset, in the hopes that the income from the asset after tax and/or its appreciation will cover the cost of taking out and servicing the loan.

This can be a great way to get a start, and is common practice for entrepreneurs who often take on debts to cover the establishment cost of a business, hoping to build the business into a profitable enterprise that will cover the cost of the loan. You should know a few things before you start leveraging however. Read on to find out more.

Be aware of the various risks

Borrowing to invest comes with four distinct major risks, each triggerable by a different change in your economic situation:

The first is investment income risk – this is the risk that the income you receive from the investment (i.e. dividends from shares or net profit from a business) is lower than you initially expected and does not cover the cost of servicing the loan.

The second is interest rate risk – if you took out a variable interest rate loan, what happens if the interest rate rose by 2%, or 5%? Would you still be able to service the loan?

The third is income risk – if there’s a latency period between buying the asset and the asset becoming profitable, what happens if your primary source of income (e.g. your wages) is affected because of sickness or redundancy? Do you have a back-up plan to service the loan?

The fourth is capital risk – this is a longer-term risk and refers to the value of the investment falling to such a level that were it to be sold, the proceeds would not cover the remaining balance of the loan. Do you have other funds with which to meet the shortfall?

Improve your cash flow and jump on opportunities

If you’re able to address these risks, borrowing to invest can be a hugely profitable undertaking. Common assets include investment properties (with tenants as a primary ongoing source of income) or shares (dividends and sale proceeds), both of which can be a great way to protect your finances into the future, with some smart planning.

If you’re looking for some financial advice about borrowing to invest, speak to a loan consultant today.

Credit Cards vs Personal Loan

It’s a debate every financially mature person is going to run up against sooner or later. Do I take out a personal loan or apply for a credit card? While to people new to managing debt it can seem like both are an equal choice, they couldn’t be more different. It’s more than apples and oranges, it’s apples and pumpkins – not only are they completely different, you use them in completely different way. Read on to find out more.

Flexibility and freedom

What the credit card does better than anything else is lots of little purchases. If you run a household and frequently need to pick up things here and there, or you operate a business where you constantly need to be maintain a supply of every product, this can be the thing for you. While it’s important to understand the limits of the card, it won’t deplete as rapidly or in the same way as a loan, which is a fixed amount of money.

Watch out, however – it’s important to pay down your credit card debt as quickly as possible to avoid it compounding. All too often we hear about people getting caught in the credit card trap, being unable to make more than the minimal repayments can see your credit rating begin to fall, potentially affecting your ability to apply for a mortgage or a car loan through a bank or financial institution. With some discipline and some careful budgeting, you’ll be able to avoid these pitfalls, but it’s always prudent to be aware of the risks.

The smart, targeted choice

A personal loan is ideal if you’re looking to go after a set, discrete item or series of items. If you’re looking to upgrade the plant and equipment in your business, or furnish your household with a new lounge set, this is the product for you.

Its fixed nature does require that you put in a bit of thought before making your application, which means your research has to be done in advance – no simply walking into the shop and browsing. You’ll have to figure out what you need, then price the product in advance of making your loan application to ensure that you get precisely what you need – not falling short or leaving money on the table.

If you’d like to find out how a personal loan can be used to your advantage, speak to the loan consultants at Fast Money today.