❑ Have a solid written business plan developed with knowledge of the industry.
❑ The Financial section of the plan must be plausible –with assumptions that explain from where the numbers are coming and that the loan can be repaid.
❑ Having direct experience in the industry that you are starting a business in is usually necessary.
❑ Plan on investing in your business from your savings – at least 25% of the total.
❑ See what Economic Development groups in your area have funding for start-up business.
❑ Have collateral to pledge that covers the full amount of what you are looking to borrow.
❑ Have a household budget completed and a way to cover all of your personal obligations – this may mean keeping your current job for a bit and working two jobs.
❑ If it’s a start-up business, you will most likely have to have been turned down by a conventional lender (bank) before an economic development group will consider doing the loan package.
❑ Work with a professional business counselor that can assist you with the entire process.
❑ You may have to approach several funders before securing the funds needed or possible down-size the project so that less money is needed.
❑ Don’t give up! Anything worth doing is worth doing well. The better you plan and prepare for starting your business, the more chance there is of it being successful.