Small Business Lending FAQ
A business term loan, or installment loan, is a loan that is funded in lump sum and paid back in regularly scheduled payments over a specified period. The repayment schedule is commonly based on the business owner’s cash-flow and may have a balloon payment requirement.
A small business real estate loan, commonly known as an owner-occupied commercial real estate loan, is a great way for entrepreneurs and small business owners to purchase a commercial space or expand into a larger one. A small business real estate loan may also be referred to as a commercial mortgage.
No, however, you will need the following materials to submit your application:
Equipment loans are self-collateralized loans, meaning the equipment you are purchasing is secured as collateral. Equipment loans are typically used to purchase large-scale machinery you wouldn’t be able to pay for upfront, such as business vehicles, manufacturing machinery, IT equipment, kitchen appliances and HVAC systems. Business owners can usually apply for equipment loans online or by visiting a bank or credit union branch.
With an SBA 504 loan, business owners can enjoy low down payments and long-term fixed rates, though it may have more qualification restrictions.
Like an SBA 504 loan, an owner-occupied commercial real estate loan can be used to purchase or build a new property, weigh a lease, remodel a business space or opt for a cash-out refinance.
Gathering your business and personal information is just one-step in the small business loan process, but in general, you may be asked to provide details such as:
Seacoast Bank offers a variety of small business lending solutions to help keep your business running smoothly, including:
The approval time for a small business loan can take anywhere from a few days to a few months, and depends on numerous factors, including, the type of loan applied for, your lender and if you have all the required documentation ready.
To obtain a business loan from Seacoast Bank, the business must be based in Florida and be in operation for a minimum of three years.
One of the biggest benefits of a small business line of credit is that it functions similarly to a credit card, offering quick access to available funds and flexible borrowing options. Other benefits include:
Explore more benefits through our Business Insights article, What Can a Small Business Line of Credit Do for You?
Available funds for a business line of credit are typically accessed through online or mobile banking by transferring available funds from the line to your business checking account or by utilizing checks on the line of credit.
With a secured line of credit, repayment is guaranteed with collateral, such as a property. With an unsecured line of credit, no asset or collateral is required for approval. A credit card is an example of an unsecured line of credit.
It varies. A Seacoast Bank Business Line of Credit provides small business owners with cash flow for small and large expenses and can be used on an as-needed basis. Because no two businesses are the same, borrowing limits are customized to each small business customer.
Connect with a Seacoast Business Banker for expert assistance and lending options.
The process for applying for a small business line of credit will depend on which lender you choose. Look for a lender that offers an online application system paired with convenient physical locations, which is helpful for picking up and dropping off documentation.
Seacoast Bank makes applying for a Small Business Line of Credit simple with a secure online application process.
Small business loan rates will vary, as they’re based on multiple factors, including:
You might consider refinancing a small business loan if interest rates have gone down or if you’d prefer different terms since you originally financed. Key factors to consider include:
The interest rate on a fixed-rate loan does not change over the life of the loan, which results in a predictable monthly payment over the loan term.
With a variable rate loan, the monthly payment may increase or decrease based on market conditions.
It’s important to note that in both loan types, the rate will be based on multiple factors, including the borrower’s credit worthiness, type of loan selected, market conditions and amount financed.
A small business is defined as an independent business having fewer than 500 employees.
The U.S. Small Business Administration is a federal agency focused on helping small business owners start, grow, or expand their small businesses by partnering with lenders like Seacoast Bank to provide government-backed business loans. Since the loans are partially guaranteed by the SBA, the program enables small business owners to obtain business loans with fewer equity requirements than conventional business loans.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) is a federal agency that helps established businesses grow and helps new businesses get started. As a borrower, you’re not borrowing from the SBA, you’re borrowing from a financial institution like Seacoast Bank that partners with the SBA to provide loans to small businesses.
SBA loans offer several advantages compared to conventional business loans including lower down payments, longer terms, full amortization, and no balloon payments. SBA loans can also provide financing for businesses that often find it difficult to obtain conventional financing like restaurants, auto repair facilities, self-storage facilities, start-up franchises, and assisted living facilities
The first step in applying for an SBA loan is to get an idea of which SBA loan might be right for you. Once you have determined which SBA loan is right for your business, meet with an SBA-preferred lender to discuss eligibility requirements. You’ll then apply and close on your SBA loan with your preferred lender. Some of the most common SBA loans are the:
SBA 7(A) loan, a term loan which can be used for a variety of business needs
SBA 504 loan, which is more restrictive and typically used for construction and purchase of owner-occupied commercial real estate and heavy machinery
USDA B&I loan, which can be used for a variety of business needs and is designed to assist businesses in rural communities
Seacoast Bank has been supporting small business growth in Florida since 1926. As an SBA preferred lender, our SBA team will meet with you to discuss your unique needs and work with you during the entire process.
There are numerous uses for an SBA loan such as purchasing or refinancing commercial real estate, equipment financing, debt refinancing, building improvements, business acquisitions, partner buyouts, construction, inventory purchases, working capital and more.
With a conventional business loan, the bank assumes all of the risk and the loan is subject to the bank lending requirements. With an SBA loan, the bank shares the risk with the SBA, which guarantees a portion of the loan. SBA loans are subject to the lending requirements of both the SBA and the bank.
No. An SBA loan must be approved by the issuing bank, and each bank has its own lending criteria. When you work with an SBA Preferred Lender, you are more likely to receive better terms and a faster application and closing process than a bank that is not an SBA Preferred Lender.
Yes. As an SBA Preferred Lender, Seacoast Bank is part of the SBA's effort to streamline the procedures necessary to provide financial assistance to the small business community. This means we meet all of the Preferred Lender Program eligibility criteria, including proficiency in processing and servicing SBA-guaranteed loans.
Seacoast Bank offers a variety of small business lending solutions designed to meet your financial goals. Explore our options or schedule an appointment at your nearest branch to learn more.