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    3 Replies Latest reply on Sep 12, 2008 9:55 AM by care4all

    Startup Funding

    care4all Newbie
      I am in the process of purchasing an in home care/assisted living placement franchise. I have gone through one attempt to secure sba financing through the SBA express program. The lender, whom I will not mention, handled the entire process very poorly, in my view. I originally requested $75K through this institution's SBA program and was approved....The first "glich" that I had to overcome was that the Franchise company was not registered with the franchise registry, an SBA requirement...After about 6 weeks, the registry was in place and I was ready to go. There was never a request for business plans, collateral, cash flow analysis, or anything....I was simply told later that I have been approved for $30K instead of the original requested $75K....After consideration and some planning, I decided to accept...Well, the bank's SBA officer then asked me what the purchase price of the business was...I explained that it was a startup and that the franchise fee alone was $29K, but the additional amount was for capital assets and operating funds. The officer then explained that the SBA express program was for purchase of existing businesses and that my personal debt ceiling was too high....The entire offering was then declined...What a mess....I am now dealing with another institution and applying for an SBA Community Express loan and have my wife as the "majority owner" of the business....This program is for women and minorities, I was told.... I submitted 30+ pages of documents and plans for this business to the lender institution but was then told that "money supply is tight, and you don't have a lot of collateral...Something I had alrweady previously told him....well, that's where I'm at now....I guess I'm looking at other alternatives for startup funding in the event that this application is also denied....Anyone out there have any suggestions it would be greatly appreciated....
        • Re: Startup Funding
          Tracker

          I'm sorry to hear that you went through all of that. Unless you have credit and collateral to secure a conventional bank loan or funding; you're only viable alternative may be to find someone to partner with you as an investor or financial partner. That will probably be the surest way to raise money for a start up business of this type. There are a number of online resources designed to help you find investors and are worth trying. But I've invested in, raised funding, bought and sold a number businesses. In my experience, it works much better if you first try developing interest through off-line contact with friends, family and your current business contacts to get a feel for how your venture is perceived. That way you can see if there is some initial interest in the business from prospective financial partners.

           

          But before you do that you should first have a well-crafted business plan that fully covers the things of interest most to investors. When you have your plan in place, in addition to looking for a financial partner, you may want to explore lending sites like:

           

          http://www.accionusa.org/

           

          http://www.lendingclub.com/

           

          https://us.zopa.com/

           

          http://www.prosper.com/

           

          Should you begin to work with the above or other sources of funding for your start-up, keep this in mind:

          With either starting or buying a business there are a many things to look into and discuss to make sure that everyone is on the same page - sometimes lenders, brokers and others involved don't get in synch and much time (and sometimes money) can be wasted. In my business I talk with a lot of entrepreneurs who want to start/buy a business and one of things I stress to them is to be sure that everything is understood about "who needs what, from who and what is it for?" Sometimes there are a lot of "moving parts" even to a small transaction. You have to know how the parts should work together ... so make that a priority so that you get a much better start and hopefully a much better result.

          There is a lot of good information and "business start-up" help to be found on this site from some of the professionals that participate in the community. Do a search for that and read more to get additional feedback that will help you. I'm currently writing an article on how to get a start-up funded and will post on this site when it is done. It might be helpful to some members of this online community.

           

          I hope the above helps you in some way. Good luck with your business start up plans.

           

          Dennis Lowery

          Adducent, Inc.
          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • Re: Startup Funding
            loan guy Wayfarer
            Good insight Dennis. I have company I can probuly refer you to that would take look at it your business plan. I understand you are short on cap. SBA communtiy program is a good one. Hope that works for you. Please email me anytime.

            cory@walkerlender.com
            1 of 1 people found this helpful
            • Re: Startup Funding
              care4all Newbie
              Cory and Dennis,

              Thanks so much for the terrific advise! Since I posted my original message, I met with a SBDC counselor, one of the requirements of the SBA loan I am applying for. She also was a wealth of information, but assured me that the small, local bank I submitted the package to would take a pretty good look at the business plan...However, she also indicated that the SBA provides smaller, unsecured loans of up to $50K where a credit score of at least 650 is required....If this loan does not go through, this also would be a viable alternative....Thanks again for the response!

              Doug