More Than Credit Score: What You Need To Know When Applying For A Business Loan

By Tabitha Shiflett

While every loan program requires different forms, many loan packages require you to submit much of the same information. Before you begin applying for loans, you should create a basic-info package. Be prepared to apply for your small business loan by having the following commonly requested information available.

Background Information

All loans will ask you to submit personal background information, including previous addresses, criminal record, names used/aliases, educational background, etc.

Credit Report (Personal And Business)

Submitting a personal credit report is a common step of most loan application processes. Obtain a report from a major consumer credit reporting agency before submitting your loan application. In addition to a personal credit report, you should be prepared to submit a credit report for your business as well.

Resumes

You may be required to provide evidence of professional and management experience, particularly if the loan is intended to start a new business. These can include your work experience, as well as relevant training and education such as proof of certifications, degrees and participation in management training programs.

Loan Proposal

All loan programs require potential clients to submit a business plan or loan proposal with the loan application. According to The U.S. Small Business Administration, “Lenders look to a loan proposal as evidence that your business has strong management, experience, and a thorough understanding of the marketplace.”  The SBA has a handy fact-sheet on how to prepare a loan proposal for your small business and what information to include.

Income Tax Returns

Collect both your personal and business income tax returns for the past three years; most loan programs will ask for these.

Bank Statements

Usually a lender will ask for personal and business bank statements that date back at least one year to be submitted as a part of your loan application.

Legal Documents

In addition to the above information, you may be required to submit additional documents that pertain to the status of your business. Depending on the lender, you may be required to submit one or more of the following documents:

  • Articles of Incorporation
  • Business licenses
  • Requisite registrations needed to operate your business
  • Copies of third-party contracts
  • Commercial leases
  • Franchise agreements

The foregoing information is provided by City National Bank (CNB). Unless otherwise stated, opinions expressed are those of the respective authors and not necessarily those of CNB. The information is provided without warranty and no recommendation or endorsement by CNB is intended or should be inferred unless specifically stated.

Visit City National Bank’s News & Insights for small business tips, trends and updates.

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