Merchant cash advances are one of the most innovative products in alternative business finance. Merchant cash advances let businesses use a card terminal to 'secure' lending — perfect for those without assets but a good volume of card transactions.Get a merchant cash advance
A merchant cash advance is a type of business funding designed to help businesses gain flexible access to the cash they need. The lender provides the company with a cash advance which it pays back through a percentage of its customers’ card payments using a card terminal.
Merchant cash advances are suitable for many businesses that use a card terminal and can be easier to access than other forms of business finance. A merchant cash advance is a valuable funding solution for companies with little or no assets and those who need capital for growth but have a limited credit score.
A merchant cash advance works by the business (or ‘merchant’) borrowing a sum of money from the lender then paying it back through customer card payments. As with other types of business finance, you can use the loan any way you need to grow your business.
With a merchant cash advance, the lender works with the terminal provider directly to see how much money is flowing through your business. Unlike other types of lending, there’s no need for credit checks or a detailed look into your bank accounts.
A merchant cash advance adapts to your business and how much money it makes, giving you more confidence in affording the repayments. How much you can borrow will depend on several factors, including your average turnover and how much you can viably afford to repay in the eyes of the lender.
Here at Funding Options, we have a variety of merchant cash advance lenders and can help you choose the right lender for your business needs. Please speak to our team today and start your application for a merchant cash advance.Apply for an MCA
If you own a business that uses a card terminal to take payments from customers, you’ll be able to apply for a merchant cash advance.
Any business that receives payment via a card terminal can get a merchant cash advance. As the lender can quickly see what the business makes over an average month, they can agree on a loan amount and a repayment plan faster than other options. So it can be an excellent solution for businesses that don’t have valuable assets or need cash quickly.
Usually, repayments are made as a percentage of revenue so they fluctuate with your business’s income. That means when things are going well, you pay more back each month, but if the business is going through a lean period you’ll pay a smaller amount. It’s a good arrangement for many companies because, unlike fixed payment finance, you can have more reassurance that you’ll be able to make payments if you hit a bump in the road.
Repayments for merchant cash advances are relatively painless as the lender works directly with the card terminal provider. The percentage they take for repayments is never in your business’s bank account, but instead is ‘taken at source’ — in much the same way that most people pay income tax.
Unlike other types of finance, the money is taken automatically until the debt is paid, so it’s a ‘hands-off’ setup from the point of view of the business owner. That means you can spend less time worrying about finances, and more time running your business.
Another benefit of a merchant cash advance is that it effectively opens a new line of credit. Your business can use other types of finance at the same time as a merchant cash advance, which can be useful for lots of businesses. For example, if you have an equipment lease already, it’s possible to get a merchant cash advance for more general cash flow at the same time.
Merchant cash advances have many benefits, but there are some drawbacks to consider, such as higher fees and the amount your business can borrow as it depends on turnover.
If you want to borrow £5,000 but your business makes £1,000 per month, your business is unlikely to secure that level of lending as it’s not in line with your cash flow position. You’re generally able to get finance equivalent to what your business receives in an average month — so for the example above, £1,000 is a much more realistic figure.
If your business receives payment in a variety of different ways, merchant cash may not be a perfect solution. It’s best-suited to businesses that do the majority of their business via a card terminal.
Another point to consider is that many lenders only work with specific terminal providers, which means your choice might be limited depending on the provider you currently use. There are some lenders who do work with a wide range of terminal providers and our team can talk you through your options to find the one that suits you best.
Merchant cash advances can help your business access funding very quickly; in some cases, a decision is made within just 24 hours. This makes it potentially suitable for business owners who need quick access to cash and can’t afford to wait weeks for a lender to come to a decision.
The application process can be relatively pain-free, too, with minimal paperwork required. You’ll usually not have to offer collateral, meaning your assets - such as a car, property and equipment - won’t be at risk like they would be when it comes to other forms of business finance.
The automatic repaying of the loan through card payments eliminates the chance of late loan repayment charges, and there’s no minimum payment. The more you earn, the quicker you will pay off the loan in full.
With a traditional business loan, repayments stay the same every month, which means they risk becoming unaffordable during quieter trading times. With a merchant cash advance, you know exactly how much you have to repay, as the cost is transparent from the beginning.
Merchant cash advances are just one option of many business finance solutions. It could be that another product - such as asset finance, a short-term business loan, or a revolving credit facility, are more appropriate for your needs.See your Funding Options