Loans for Small Business Owners

Compare a range of loan offers designed for small businesses right here with Savvy and save on your finance deal.

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, updated on July 26th, 2023       

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What are the easiest loans for small business owners to get?

An unsecured business loan is probably one of the easiest and most accessible loans on the Australian finance market and could be an ideal option for a male or female small business owner in need of finance.

A small Australian business – whether it’s a recent startup or an established family business – don't often have a large amount of resources available to them. Many operate out of leased premises and have little in the way of significant resources, and often they operate on fairly tight budgets without large reserves of available cash. This can prove a challenge when trying to secure loan finance, when collateral and deposits are expected. Fortunately, unsecured loans require neither.

Unsecured loans are available from most business lenders in Australia. They don’t come at the cheapest rates, but you get a lot in return for the higher cost – easy applications, fast turnaround time, no requirement for a deposit or collateral, and one of the most easily accessible loans on the Australian market. This is even more obvious when applying through an online lender – who have a reputation for being far more lenient with loan approval than the large banks.

All this means that an unsecured business loan from an online lender is one of the easiest loans to get on the Australian finance market, and an excellent choice for small business owners on the hunt for a loan.

What factors should I look at when comparing an unsecured loan for my small business?

Not every lender is the same, and unsecured loans for self-employed business owners can vary widely in cost and what features they bring to the table. When comparing different unsecured loans to find the best for your business, there’s a few factors to consider.

  • Interest Rates – The interest rates charges on the loan can make a significant difference to the overall cost of the loan. Even a difference of a percent or two can mean thousands of dollars difference over the course of several years. It’s worth hunting for the best rate on offer for your loan – and remember that rates can change, so make sure your information is up to date.
  • Loan Terms – Lenders offer different terms or durations on a loan. Some allow you to choose, while others set the term themselves. Make sure you’re going with a lender who offers loan terms that suit your business.
  • Fees – Fees add to what you pay on the loan, and mean that the interest isn’t the only cost factor. Some are fairly easy to predict, and many lenders will offer a “comparison rate” alongside the interest rate, which accounts for the most basic fees. Other fees will only be charged if certain things occur, like late repayments, or making certain transactions with your loan.
  • Additional features – There are various other features that set loans apart, such as flexibility with how often you need to make repayments, or the ability to repay the loan early without fees. It’s useful to do the homework on what extras each loan has on offer.

A great place to get started on the process of comparing loans is with Savvy. You can compare unsecured business loans from a range of top Australian lenders, including flexible private lenders, and quickly find the best choices on offer for your small business.

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What other types of loan can be useful for small businesses?

Frequently asked questions about small business loans

Will the size of my small business affect the terms I get offered on a loan?

It might, although it’s not just about the size of your business. Lenders have a preference for offering loans to established, successful businesses. So generally a large, well established business chain will generally get better terms than a single small business. But if you’ve been operating your small business successfully since the 1970’s, you’ll probably still get better terms than a similar small business set up in 2017, as you have an established brand and a proven business track record.

As a small business owner, does my personal credit affect my business' loan application?

Yes, when assessing a business loan application, lenders will normally also consider the credit records of the directors / owners of the business. So your personal credit will be a factor. This can be a good thing if have very healthy personal credit.

As the owner, can I use personal finance to obtain a small loan for my business?

Yes, although there can be risks with mixing personal and business finance so it’s not recommended. But it’s also possible to use personal assets as security for a business loan, which doesn’t tend to muddy the water as much – although it can still place your own assets at risk if the business fails.

How much can I borrow as a loan for my small business?

With an unsecured business loan, you can borrow as little as $5,000, and potentially up to around $300,000 – although smaller businesses probably wouldn’t be offered as much as that. If you’re in the fortunate situation of being able to offer security on the loan, these figures can be much higher.

Are there loans available for a small startup business owner?

Yes, many lenders do offer specialised loans for startup businesses, that account for many lender expectations that a new business couldn’t normally meet (like past financial records). Many do require security on the loan, and are often built around the idea of using something like your residential home as collateral to get your business off the ground.

What can I use the funds from a small business loan for?

In Australia, unsecured small business loans can be used for almost any business-related purpose – paying wages, buying equipment, renovating a workplace, training staff, putting on an event, or even all of the above. There are more specialised loans such as equipment finance or fit out finance that are customised for a very specific purpose, but anyone getting one of those loans will normally have a specific goal in mind.

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