Many of our customers ask similar questions and the following are those we are asked most often. But please contact us if you want to raise other issues or would like to be sure you know all you need to know; we are always happy to talk through things from your point of view.
- What is the smallest sum you'll deal with? £1,000 is the minimum amount we'll arrange, given that most people can easily borrow less than that and usually want to do so over a short term. We have not yet been asked to fund an amount beyond our scope; the highest figure we have organised finance for is £3 million but there is no upper limit so if you need more than this, try us out.
- Should I come to you before I order what I need? Many of our clients have to make instant decisions on purchases – for example if winning a new contract depends on them having the equipment or if they plan to buy at auction where finances must be in place before you bid. We are used to providing what is needed for different situations – and working at breakneck speed. Come to us at any stage – when you are thinking of what you might need in the future and wish to plan your finances, when you have decided but have yet to order, or after you have ordered and need the funding to be tied up swiftly.
- Should I shop around? Because we are not tied to any funders or suppliers, we shop around for you. Many lenders know us well and actively come to us when their terms change so we know where the best deals are at any one time. Nevertheless, if we think we could do better, we will negotiate with companies we know are flexible. We represent you, our client, not them and want to arrange the best deal for you. But, if you want to get a second opinion, please do, and if our competitors can find you a better deal, we'd be delighted for you.
- Why should I go through a broker, a middleman? While many ordinary lenders (such as high street banks) will finance equipment purchases or fund business ventures, they often don't understand the reality of the risks involved and so take an over-cautious view. The result can be higher premiums, or shorter loan periods with higher repayments, which can stretch your resources to the limit. As specialists in your industry, with a detailed understanding of your business, its equipment, your customer or client base and how you and they work, we can negotiate a more realistic deal which provides the safeguards you need (rather than those the lender needs). Plus, as we are lenders as well as brokers, we can often be more creative in structuring a deal which is more suited to your circumstances.
- How will I know if I have got a good deal? Unless you are borrowing a small sum (in relation to other financial commitments) we would always advise that you spread your debt so you spread your risks. If you already have loans with other lenders (such as a high street bank) or if those loans are large, we would advise you to look at alternatives for new borrowing and, if appropriate, to switch some of your existing loans if they are with one lender. If other lenders suggest you should consolidate all your loans in one convenient package, we strongly recommend you ignore them and consult another lender. We'd be keen to make sure you do not end up with an ill-suited agreement that makes the finance company the maximum profit but which is not ideal for you.
- As new equipment comes on stream, is it better to hire or to buy? Just when you thought you had everything you need, along comes something else which presents new opportunities but costs a lot of money. We can talk through the options with you so you can decide whether hiring makes sense in the short term or whether or when you should plan to buy, and what your purchase should be. Even if all you want is advice, please give us a ring as we'd be glad to guide you.
- I have no track record as a business owner but I want to set up a business. Can you help me? We know that new businesses offer huge potential and often enable new talent to flourish. If you have a track record in the industry, you are likely to bring a client base with you or attract customers based on your previous reputation. Meanwhile, if you have a new idea and know the industry, you could be on to a winner no one else has the courage to support. We are not averse to taking a leap of faith and helping you get started, whether that is by finding conventional finance packages or investing our own money and management expertise in your new venture. Being new to running a business is not a bar to borrowing from our point of view.
- You're suggesting I should personally guarantee the loan? How can I possibly sell that concept to my wife/husband/partner? Yes, this can be tricky and it is not a decision you should make lightly; nor will we suggest it unless we believe it is your only option. What we can then offer is personal experience of doing this ourselves and, therefore, detailed knowledge of what it means in reality, an understanding of the consequences and how to explain the risks and uncertainties to whoever else might be implicated. We will ensure you have all the information and facts you need so you can consider the risks in detail before reaching a decision. And, of course, we'll have explored all the other options before recommending this.
- What happens if my business goes bust? In the unfortunate event of your business not succeeding, we would first try to help you to satisfy the terms of the agreement (for example by rescheduling payments or transferring the agreement to another company). If that is not possible, the agreement will be terminated and the equipment will be repossessed and sold in settlement against the outstanding balance of the agreement. At that point, as specialists in the industry, we would always seek to sell the equipment for the best market value. This is very different from a typical high street lender who, not understanding the industry, might simply dispose of the equipment at auction, inadvertently selling it for a steal rather than maximising the return to minimise your losses.
If you have other questions, or if you’d like to explore our answers in more detail,
please get in touch