The commercial finance minefield; Why independent advice is a must

Commercial finance options for SME businesses in the UK have exploded in recent years. While traditional lending from mainstream banks is still available, the proliferation of avenues available to a business looking to use finance to grow can be a difficult and complex space to navigate.

Therefore, business owners should seek independent expert advice and support when looking at commercial finance options.

Working closely with a commercial finance broker can help you to plan your funding strategically and align the process with your business growth aspirations. Jumping feet first into an agreement with the first lender you come across could affect your chances of getting funding in the future. So be smart; use the experts.

There’s also more to it than just strategic planning; your relationship with your commercial finance broker means that you are more likely to get the best deal for your business. A good commercial broker will continue to work with clients on a longer-term basis for mutual benefit.  It’s not just about doing deals; it’s about supporting our customers to grow. We can do this effectively because we have significant influence on the lenders with regards to rates, exit clauses and speed of decision.

With so many funding options on offer, why stick with just one route?

Savvy SME business owners come to us to help them ‘test’ the market. These businesses have historically had relationships with some of the UK’s main lenders, but they want to find out what other options are available.

They may be haulage companies wanting to finance their fleet, manufacturing companies who need to purchase high value machinery or developers looking to raise funds for a brand new site.

The options available can range from asset finance, invoice finance, and commercial property finance to bridging loans, business loans or peer to peer lending. Or your broker can even work with you to structure a hybrid deal drawn from the whole suite of alternative finance products listed above and tailor it to your own individual circumstances.

So many lenders in the market today will only go through the intermediary broker channel, meaning you can’t get this sort of deal directly. If that’s not reason enough to call your broker, I don’t know what is.

In the past, the term “broker” would be likely to conjure up visions of slick sales people looking for the next ‘deal’. Nowadays this is not the case; the market is regulated and commercial finance brokers have to be experts in their field.

Here at ABL Business we have access to over 120 funders, we are FCA Authorised and Members of the NACFB. We’re continually improving our knowledge of the alternative finance market and this makes us ideally placed to advise and support you.