Funding Circle and Lending Club offer small-business owners reasonable loan terms and rates, a simple online application process with minimal paperwork, and fast funding. The lenders provide an alternative to traditional small-business loans from banks, which typically require strong credit and a stellar business to qualify and can take months to fund you.
Here’s a side-by-side comparison of Funding Circle and Lending Club. We’ve looked at the speed, costs and qualifications of each lender to help you decide which one may be right for your small business. Given their similarities, it might come down to which lender you qualify for.
Funding Circle is a good option if you:
- Need to finance a large one-time investment of up to $500,000
- Have two or more years of business history
Funding Circle’s $500,000 loan cap, coupled with a repayment term as long as five years, should appeal to businesses looking to buy pricey equipment or make some other major investment. (Read our Funding Circle review.)
How to qualify: You’ll need a minimum personal credit score of 620 with no bankruptcies in the past seven years. The average funded borrower has a credit score of 700. Your business must also have been in operation at least two years. Funding Circle doesn’t require a minimum annual revenue.
Costs: Funding Circle’s term loans carry an APR of 7.4% to 36%, which includes a one-time origination fee of 0.99% to 6.99%, deducted from your total loan proceeds. Real-time cash flow and your personal credit score are a few key factors that determine your APR.
Repayment: You repay Funding Circle loans monthly over six months to five years. There are no prepayment penalties, and you can repay the loan early to save on interest.
Speed: You can complete the online application in 10 minutes. Within two hours you should hear from a loan specialist, who will ask you to submit documents to verify the application. If approved for a loan, you should be funded within 10 to 14 days. Learn more in our step-by-step Funding Circle application guide.
If Funding Circle sounds like the right fit:
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Lending Club is a good option if you:
- Have only one year of business history
- Need a smaller-size loan to finance expansion or buy equipment
Lending Club’s term loan is also a good option for financing a major investment, but it carries a lower maximum borrowing amount of $300,000 and requires a minimum of $50,000 in annual revenue to qualify. (Read our Lending Club review.)
How to qualify: You must have a minimum personal credit score of 600, at least one year of operating history and $50,000 or more in annual revenue. In addition, you must own at least 20% of the business and have no recent bankruptcies or tax liens. Lending Club is not available to borrowers in Iowa.
Costs: APRs on Lending Club’s term loans and lines of credit range from 9.8% to 35.7%. With term loans, this includes an origination fee of 1.99% to 6.99% of the loan amount.
Repayment: You repay Lending Club’s term loans monthly over one to five years. You can repay the loans early at any time to save on interest, without a prepayment penalty.
Speed: You can complete Lending Club’s application online in five to 10 minutes, and you must submit documents only if you’ve been approved for financing. Funding can be as fast as two days but typically occurs in a week or two. Learn more about the application process in our Lending Club step-by-step guide.
If Lending Club sounds like the right fit:
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More small-business loan options
NerdWallet has created a list of the best small-business loans to meet your needs and goals. We gauged lender trustworthiness and user experience, among other factors, and arranged them by categories that include your revenue and how long you’ve been in business.
Updated Nov. 15, 2017.