Best of

Best Small-Business Loans for Veterans 2020

Steve NicastroMay 4, 2020

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.

Small-business loan options for veterans include loans for working capital, expansion and unpaid customer invoices.

Veterans who are entrepreneurs — like all entrepreneurs — may need funding at various stages of running a small business. Whether it’s to hire new employees, purchase equipment or fund marketing expenses, a small-business loan can help.

Here are the best business loans for veterans, plus information on VA loans and other financing resources.

LOOKING FOR CORONAVIRUS BENEFITS INFORMATION?

Easily get real, personalized small business loan rates to compare — not just ranges or estimates.

It’s free and won’t affect your credit.

Get Started

on Lendio's website

Our picks for

Fast cash

Kabbage and OnDeck offer fast business loans, with funding as fast as a few minutes.

Kabbage - Line of credit

Kabbage - Line of credit

Est. APR

24.00 - 99.00%

Min. Credit Score

560

Pros

  • Financing up to $250,000 available within a few days.
  • Accepts low credit scores.

Cons

  • Rates are high compared to other online lenders.
  • Must have online checking or PayPal account to verify cash flow.
  • Fixed-fee structure means early repayment does not save interest.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 560.
  • Minimum time in business: 1 year.
  • Minimum annual revenue: $50,000.
Read full review
Kabbage provides fast loans for business owners with bad personal credit, but rates can be high.
OnDeck - Online term loan

OnDeck - Online term loan

Est. APR

9.00 - 99.00%

Min. Credit Score

600

Pros

  • Cash can be available within the same business day.
  • Requires low minimum credit score.
  • Less paperwork than most lenders.

Cons

  • Fixed-fee structure means early repayment will not save interest.
  • Requires frequent (daily or weekly) repayments.
  • Requires business lien and personal guarantee.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 600.
  • Minimum time in business: 3 years.
  • Minimum annual revenue: $250,000.
  • No bankruptcies in the past 2 years.
Read full review
OnDeck offers a fast term loan for small-business owners with less-than-stellar credit who want to expand.

Our pick for

Working capital

BlueVine - Line of credit

BlueVine - Line of credit

Est. APR

15.00 - 78.00%

Min. Credit Score

650

Pros

  • Cash can be available within 12 to 24 hours.
  • Multiple products for different financing needs

Cons

  • Short repayment term results in higher payment amounts.
  • Requires personal guarantee.
  • Not available in North Dakota, South Dakota or Vermont.

Qualifications

  • 6-month line of credit
  • Minimum credit score: 650.
  • Minimum time in business: 36 months.
  • Minimum annual revenue: $100,000.
  • 12-month line of credit
  • Minimum credit score: 650.
  • Minimum time in business: 3 years.
  • Minimum annual revenue: $480,000.
Read full review
BlueVine's line of credit provides fast working capital for short-term borrowing needs.

Our picks for

Expansion financing

SmartBiz provides Small Business Administration loans, which have relatively low interest rates and a 10-year repayment term. Credibility Capital is an option for larger loans up to $400,000.

SmartBiz - SBA loan

SmartBiz - SBA loan

Est. APR

6.73 - 10.29%

Min. Credit Score

650

Pros

  • Competitive rates among online lenders.
  • Faster than getting an SBA loan from a bank.

Cons

  • Must have strong financials, supported by personal and business tax returns for the past 3 years.
  • Stringent rules on use of proceeds.
  • Requires business lien and personal guarantee.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 650.
  • Minimum time in business: 2 years.
  • Minimum annual revenue: $50,000.
  • No bankruptcies or foreclosures in the past 3 years.
Read full review
SmartBiz’s low-cost SBA loans work best for established businesses that want to finance an expansion or refinance debt.
Credibility Capital - Online term loan

Credibility Capital - Online term loan

Est. APR

19.99 - 24.99%

Min. Credit Score

680

Pros

  • Competitive rates among online lenders.
  • No prepayment penalty.
  • Extra monthly payments can save interest cost.

Cons

  • Short repayment term results in higher payment amounts.
  • Requires high minimum credit score and revenue.
  • Requires business lien and may require personal guarantee.
  • Not available in Nevada, North Dakota, South Dakota, or Vermont.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 680.
  • Minimum time in business: 2 years.
  • Minimum annual revenue: $250,000.
  • No bankruptcies in the past 5 years.
Read full review
Credibility Capital offers low-cost business loans that work best for small-business owners with strong credit.

Our pick for

Businesses with unpaid customer invoices

BlueVine - Invoice factoring

BlueVine - Invoice factoring

Est. APR

15.00 - 68.00%

Min. Credit Score

530

Pros

  • Finances larger invoices.
  • Cash can be available within the same day.
  • Accepts low minimum credit score and short time in business.

Cons

  • Not for businesses that do not invoice on net terms.
  • Loan amount is tied to the value of your invoices.
  • Dependency on customers to pay their bills on time.

Qualifications

  • Minimum credit score: 530.
  • Minimum time in business: 3 months.
  • Minimum annual revenue: $100,000.
Read full review
BlueVine’s invoice factoring works best for financing larger invoices, but only if your customers reliably pay on time.

Easily get real, personalized small business loan rates to compare — not just ranges or estimates.

It’s free and won’t affect your credit.

Get Started

on Lendio's website

Summary of Best Small-Business Loans for Veterans 2020

Best for startups

Lenders generally prefer to do business with established companies that have strong cash flow, and this often disqualifies startups with less than a year of operating history and little revenue.

However, you’re not completely out of luck: If you have good personal credit, your options include business credit cards and personal business loans.

Business credit cards typically provide up to $50,000 in revolving credit, meaning you can borrow and repay from the credit card as needed, and pay interest only on withdrawn funds.

Personal loans for business provide a lump sum of cash, with a fixed interest rate and repayment terms.

Both options are unsecured, meaning you won’t have to put down collateral — an asset, such as real estate or inventory — to qualify.

VA loans and other financial resources

Veteran-owned businesses can also seek help through the SBA’s Veterans Advantage lending program (VA business loans), which provides fee reductions on SBA loans, including:

  • No upfront fees for eligible borrowers on 7(a) loans of $125,000 or less.

  • Reduced fees by 50% on 7(a) loans between $125,001 and $350,000.

  • No fees on SBA Express loans between $150,001 and $350,000.

SBA loans are offered through banks, credit unions and other lenders (including lenders partnered with SmartBiz), with the SBA guaranteeing a portion of the loan if the borrower defaults.

For other financial resources for veterans, check out our list of small-business grants for veterans or personal loans for veterans.

Compare small-business loans

When you're shopping for a loan, be sure to compare annual percentage rates, or APRs, which give you a holistic picture of a loan's cost. NerdWallet's small-business loans comparison tool can help. We've gauged lender trustworthiness, market scope and user experience, among other factors to help you choose the best loan.

Last updated on May 4, 2020

To recap our selections...

NerdWallet's Best Small-Business Loans for Veterans 2020

Frequently asked questions