Compare Business Loans

  • Business loans are available for companies of all sizes and industries
  • There are many types of business loan, designed to suit particular commercial needs
  • You can compare loan amounts and term lengths in our comparison tables
9 products found
  • Funding Circle logo
    Peer To Peer

    Funding Circle

    • A leading UK platform for Small Business Loans
    • Simple online application and decisions in as little as 5 hours
    • Rates from 4.3% to 12.1% per year - No early settlement fees
    • Minimum Turnover
      No minimum
    • Available Amounts
      £10,000 to £500,000
    • Available Terms
      2 to 6 years
  • EJ Finance logo
    Broker

    EJ Finance

    • Application-to-offer within 24 hours
    • To be contacted within 3 minutes of applying
    • Access to over 200+ lenders, covering all sectors
    • Minimum Turnover
      £50,000 p.a.
    • Available Amounts
      £10,000 to £10,000,000
    • Available Terms
      1 months to 10 years
  • Fluidly logo
    Broker

    Fluidly

    • YOUR BUSINESS MUST BE TRADING FOR 12 MONTHS OR MORE
    • Hassle free funding options within 30 seconds
    • Team of 5-star rated Funding Specialists are on hand to support your application
    • A range of products available including Recovery Loan Schemes, unsecured and asset financing
    • Minimum Turnover
      £50,000 p.a.
    • Available Amounts
      £15,000 to £10,000,000
    • Available Terms
      3 months to 7 years
  • iwoca logo

    iwoca

    • Flexible Credit Facilities of £1,000 to £200,000 for Limited Companies
    • No fees or long term commitments
    • Apply online in minutes for a decision (some decisions may take up to 24 hours)
    • Minimum Turnover
      £50,000 p.a.
    • Available Amounts
      £1,000 to £200,000
    • Available Terms
      up to 12 months
  • Swoop Funding logo
    Broker

    Swoop Funding

    • Your business must be trading for 12 months or more
    • Simple, secure and speedy search of 1,000 funding providers without affecting your credit rating
    • Free access every type of finance including the Recovery Loan Scheme
    • Speak to Swoop’s team of five-star Trustpilot rated experts
    • Minimum Turnover
      £100,000 p.a.
    • Available Amounts
      £1,000 to £10,000,000
    • Available Terms
      3 months to 6 years
  • Fleximize logo

    Fleximize

    • Voted "Best Business Finance Provider" at the British Bank Awards 2020
    • Industry-leading flexibility - top-ups, repayment holidays, no hidden fees
    • Interest charged on a reducing balance, repay early and only pay for the time you had the loan
    • Rates from 0.9% per month (10.8% per annum), with no additional fees
    • Minimum Turnover
      £60,000 p.a.
    • Available Amounts
      £5,000 to £500,000
    • Available Terms
      3 months to 4 years
  • Funding Xchange logo
    Broker

    Funding Xchange

    • Funding Xchange’s free service matches your eligibility against over 50 lenders in seconds
    • Complete your application online in as little as 3 minutes and you could get funded in a few hours
    • It's simple, safe and free and the search won’t affect your credit rating
    • Minimum Turnover
      £100,000 p.a.
    • Available Amounts
      £1,000 to £500,000
    • Available Terms
      3 months to 5 years
  • Portman Asset Finance logo
    Broker

    Portman Asset Finance

    • Business finance broker with specialist sector experience to offer fast and flexible finance solutions
    • Access over 40 leading UK business finance providers
    • Dedicated Recovery Loan Scheme account managers
    • Minimum Turnover
      £150,000+ p.a.
    • Available Amounts
      £10,000 to £10,000,000
    • Available Terms
      Up to 5 years
  • Nucleus logo

    Nucleus

    • Fast service - receive your funding in 24 hours
    • Unsecured and secured business loans
    • 7 products tailored to your business
    • Minimum Turnover
      £60,000 p.a.
    • Available Amounts
      £3,000 to £50,000,000
    • Available Terms
      3 months to 8 years

Our comparison service features a selection of providers from whom we receive commission. This table is initially ordered according to our commercial arrangements. You can use the options above the table to order it according to various criteria.

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Published on 05 July 2017. Last updated on 10 June 2021.

How to get a business loan

A business loan is exactly what it sounds like - a source of finance for businesses that need money to expand, to pay for equipment, to improve cash flow, or for other projects.

There are different types of business finance available, but essentially the business will borrow a sum of money and then repay it, with interest, over a set term.

The trouble is, finding the right business loan can be a daunting prospect. On the one hand, there’s traditional bank loans and on the other there are options like online lenders and alternative finance providers. Here at NerdWallet, we’ve put many of them in one accessible business loan comparison table, so you can find a loan to help nurture and grow your business.

Take a look through the table at the current deals on offer. Our business loan comparison tables break down the important factors like available loan terms and amounts. Not every deal will be right for you, but our tables are a good place to start when navigating the busy business loan marketplace.

» MORE: How business loans work

Most business owners will find themselves looking for extra finance at some point. But with so many finance options and lenders to choose from, you may feel overwhelmed and unsure where to begin your search for a loan.

There are a few fundamental questions you can ask yourself to help you make your decision:

  1. How much do I need to borrow?
  2. How long do I need to repay the loan?
  3. How much can I afford to repay each month?
  4. Do I struggle with unpaid invoices?
  5. Do I hold equity in a property?
  6. Do I need the loan to buy a specific valuable asset?
  7. What’s my personal and business credit rating like?
  8. Do I take payment through a card machine?
  9. Do I need a lump sum all at once?

When you have the answers to these questions, you might be able to start narrowing down the list of possible business loans.

Who is eligible for a business loan?

Sole traders, SMEs and large businesses can all qualify for a business loan. However, lenders will set their own criteria and determine your eligibility for a loan based on information like:

  • The age of your business.
  • Your annual turnover.
  • Your business and personal credit history.

» MORE: Can I get a business loan?

What do I need to apply for a business loan?

To make a decision on your loan application and to offer you a quote, lenders will need to know some information about you and your business including:

  • The name of your business.
  • Your contact details (address, phone number, email).
  • How long your business has been trading.
  • Details about your company finances and revenue.
  • How much you want to borrow.
  • What you want the money for (expansion, equipment, improved cash flow, marketing).
  • How long you want to borrow the money for.

To make applying for a business loan as quick and stress-free as possible, it will help to have all the relevant information and documents to hand, such as your company’s bank statements and accounts.

You can then use our comparison table to search through the business loans available and find the most suitable one for your company.

The main types of business loan

Secured business loans

Secured business loans are a type of business finance that requires you to put forward an asset - usually a property - as security for a loan. Secured loans often come with lower interest rates than unsecured loans as they represent less risk for the lender. They may also give you access to a larger loan amount over a longer term.

However, secured loans come with the added risk that you could lose your property (often your home) if you struggle to keep up with the payments.

Commercial mortgages and asset-backed lending are two types of secured loan available to businesses.

Unsecured business loans

Unsecured business loans are those that don’t require security. Here are some of the main types of unsecured business loan – note that this is not an exhaustive list:

  • Bank loan: These tend to be offered by major high street banks. They have been more difficult to obtain in recent years but are still a popular choice with established businesses with solid credit ratings.
  • Alternative business loan: Many alternative lenders and online banks will now offer business loans, usually through online-only platforms. Rates, terms and eligibility requirements for alternative business funding differ from lender to lender.
  • Lines of credit: Lines of credit offer businesses the option of seeking a credit limit against which they can withdraw money as and when they need it. Interest is then paid only on the balance owed.
  • Merchant cash advance: Merchant cash advances, which are also sometimes known as business cash advances, are a type of business loan that is repaid automatically when a business takes a card payment from a customer. Merchant cash advances can offer finance for businesses that have poor credit ratings or a limited trading history.
  • Invoice financing: Invoice financing involves ‘selling’ unpaid invoices to a financier who makes the value of the invoice available to the business immediately in exchange for a fee.
  • Short-term loan: Short-term business loans are straightforward business loans that are often offered over periods of months, as opposed to years. Cash is usually made available quickly, but interest rates can be high and loan amounts are often limited.
  • Peer-to-peer lending: Online platforms matching willing lenders (often either private equity investors or members of the public) with businesses that are seeking loans are a popular new finance model. Peer-to-peer lending rates can be preferable, but eligibility might be relatively strict.

Government business loans

In response to the devastating impact of coronavirus on businesses of all sizes, the government launched a number of business loan schemes.

These included the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) and the Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS), but these are now closed for new applications.

However, businesses can still apply for the Recovery Loan Scheme. Under the scheme, which closes on 31 December 2021, businesses can apply to participating lenders for up to £10 million of funding to help them recover from the impact of the pandemic.

» MORE: How to apply to the Recovery Loan Scheme

Start-up business loans

When you’re just setting out on your business journey, your finances are likely to occupy most of your thoughts. But, even though you won’t have much business history to show lenders, if any, there are still opportunities for you to access funding.

For example, there is a government-backed Start Up Loan Scheme that offers loans of up to £25,000 to businesses that are up to 24 months old.

Other lenders may also be willing to lend to start-up businesses, although you may need to provide more information about you and your business to get accepted and you may struggle to get approved for large amounts.

Especially if you are starting out in business, lenders may look at your personal credit score to help them come to a decision about your loan application. They may also require a personal guarantee that you will repay the loan even if your business can’t, as this will give them extra security.

» MORE: Getting funding for your start-up

Small business loans

As small businesses grow, an injection of cash can make all the difference. Whether they want to move to bigger premises, hire more staff, buy more stock, invest in new equipment, or expand in other ways, small businesses will often need money to achieve their goals.

Many small and growing businesses won’t have the cash reserves to fund their expansion projects, which is when they may look for funding from external sources. Small business loans are key to help companies grow, and they are offered by high-street banks as well as online-only lenders.

If you are thinking of getting a small business loan, don’t just apply to your existing bank. Take some time to look at other providers and the types of funding available, as there are many different loan and credit options to cater for a range of businesses.

It is also worth seeing if you’re eligible for any small business grants as, unlike with a loan, you wouldn’t need to pay back the money.

Business loan FAQs

What can I use a business loan for?

Do I need to be the owner of a business to get a business loan?

Do I need a business bank account to get a business loan?

Will my personal credit rating be taken into consideration when applying for a business loan?

Can I get a business loan with bad credit?

Can you get business loans for new companies?

Are business loans regulated?

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