How Alt-Lending Is Leveraging A.I For Better Business Outcomes?

The dawn of a new era is here. An era that is more evolved, more developed, and many more miles technologically ahead than what could ever have been imagined or encapsulated even 20 or so years before. Artificial intelligence and machine learning are at the forefront of this new change, and everything around is faster, automated, and more advanced.

From cars on auto mode to smart home, smart factories, speech recognition, the impact is overwhelming, and the Alt lending sector is at the helm, leading right from the forefront, charging into the times ahead riding on this wave of Big Data.

Still wondering how A.I is revolutionizing our Alt-lending sector to make it more accessible, more user-friendly, more relevant for your business needs. Keep reading to find out more.

Broadly speaking, AI:

  1. Makes accessible data more relevant.
  2. Cuts down on processing time through automation.
  3. Minimizes the risk of human error.
  4. Provides seamless and continuous 24X 7 customer service through automated chatbots like those in operation at Mantis Funding Customer Service.

So, paramount is the influence of AI on Alt-finance that it is being speculated that the next 15 years could see a huge paradigm shift in the workforce dynamics with the introduction of robotics, which will further cut down our cost of business by 75%, allowing us to offer more cash advances at better and competitive rates of interest.

The future only looks brighter with the rapid advances in the field of Cloud computing, open-source software, and big data. A whole world, still unchartered, remains to be explored and conquered, and this could only spell better business and more growth.

Let me just give you a sneak peek into how we are able to take huge leaps of faith backed by data to make financing easier and more accessible to you –

1 – AI allows us to sift through huge volumes of data to target the optimal clients, and what is of real significance is that the data is relevant, meaningful, and contextual. The use of “optimal lender to SMB match algorithm ensures we are not grappling our way in the dark but reaching out to those who matter most through in-depth analysis of matching parameters.

In other words, it guarantees that you, who are looking for a certain type of Cash Advance based on your requirement and ability for your business needs and we who are offering the same, meet with no hassle, no loss of time, and no blank calls. No multiple applications needed and certainly, no more waiting at Mantis Funding Cash Advances.

2 – All applications received at our end at Mantis Funding Complaints are scanned, validated, and cross-verified through AI-backed processes over-riding any chance of human error and resulting in higher approval rates.

3 – AI technology helps us at Mantis Funding Cash Advance to thoroughly analyze the needs of each business sector and prepare to customize funding profile in the form of a simple scoring system and LendingScore TM (the latest FICO for the small business ending) dashboard which shows us in a measured way the gaps in the business and the best way to cement those gaps.

4 – And that is not all. The use of AI in our line of business allows us to help those businesses too, which do not qualify for a business loan through any conventional or non-conventional route and be able to invest in them through predictive algorithms, thus targeting some of the critically unsolved problems in this area of business.

So, whether it is optimizing costs, meeting margins, and exceeding customer expectations, Alt finance is doing all these and more by embracing and adapting AI for a brighter, better world.

Alternative Financing Succeeds Because It Combines Human Connection With Artificial Intelligence

Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning. Bill Gates

I think some bank employees heard this quote and created the alternative financing industry! Because it seems to me that the alt-fin sector solves all the problems that plagued small business financing for decades under the strictly controlled traditional banking sector.

Almost all alternative lending companies offer 3 main benefits – speed, flexibility, and accessibility.

Speed – Alt-lending companies with their automated systems and fast processing times guarantee quick funding to its customers. Gone are the days of long-drawn-out and complicated paperwork and weeks of waiting for approvals. Now funding offers like Mantis Funding’s Cash advance come through in less than 24 hours!

Flexibility – According to my observations, most small businesses don’t have extensive needs. While many are, of course, also looking for large or long term amounts for expansion, most need less than $10K. Banks, unfortunately, only offered a few fixed financing offers, which keep them stuck in a long-term debt they don’t really need. Alt lenders like Mantis Funding provide cash advances that range from $2K to $200K and offer customization in terms of repayment costs and timelines.

Accessibility – the tyranny of credit scores finally comes to an end with alt-fin. No longer must we be judged by one-dimensional credit scores as alternative lenders take a more holistic approach to judge the creditworthiness of businesses.

The 3 main advantages mentioned above are well known and quite well advertised by all alt-fin companies. They are the reason why so many small and mid-sized businesses are flocking to the alt-lending industry.

But in the long run, I feel they have an even better differentiator in their pockets – the industry has cultivated a unique customer-centric approach and matched that with the latest AI-backed fintech. Banks are now integrating technology and flexibility in their process as well and might soon be able to match some of the advantages of alt-fin. But their large, unwieldy structures are permeated with a corporate culture that puts risk management first! The bank’s profits and safety come before the customer; the approach is completely different in alt-lending companies like Mantis Funding, where complaints regarding customer care are unheard of!

The most successful companies in the alternative lending landscape are the ones who can harness artificial intelligence algorithms to reduce time and risk, but the heart of their operations are based on deep human connections. For example, I found that at Mantis Funding, even though the application process is completely online, the team members reached out to every single customer personally and took the time to find out about their business and their reasons for seeking funding. Customer stories mattered and in many cases, decisions were influenced by the client’s situation or personality.

My personal experience with them was eye-opening, the manager assigned to me handheld and mentored me throughout the process. I was given ALL the information, and there were no hidden charges or fees or anything underhanded at all. I admit I was a bit wary when I first started the process, but now with my deal fully repaid, I can truthfully say that Mantis Funding cash advance saved my business!

If you are a business owner, looking for that little cash boost, then my advice would be to explore alternative financing. Scout the market, talk to different companies, and find the one that treats you the best!

The Basic Qualification Differences Between Traditional And Alternative Funding

In the last decade or so, alternative financing has become a new method for SMEs to get funded. What’s intriguing is that this industry has seen an exponential rise and, to a certain extent, is also responsible for strengthening the backbone of the country’s economy- small and medium enterprises.

However, no one predicted this coming, especially 10 years ago. Before this industry came into existence, businessmen had to visit banks and credit unions to receive funds for their small needs. Howbeit, this scenario changed when the industry had to face turbulence created by the recession. Post-recession, the financing sector became rigid and became a bit apprehensive. This reflected in their reluctance to provide funds to SMEs.

This became a prominent reason why alt-financing gained major attention. And, it could not have been more different from the traditional channel. On the one hand, traditional channels have made a red tape and paperwork an important part of the procedure, whereas, on the other hand, these non-traditional streamlined and automated their procedures. This little step has made them time-saver and a businessman’s go-to option.

Nevertheless, these two options vastly differ from each other, apart from the aforementioned fact. Let’s delve into that:

Formalities: Banks do have extensive paperwork, even in today’s online scenario. What’s more, is that they ask for 2-3 years of transactional history with the client’s tax returns.

Meanwhile, with alternative lenders, a businessman only needs to provide their bank statements for the past few months so that they can verify their transaction history.

Monetary Deposits/Collaterals and Credit Score: Banks always ask for monetary deposits when a businessman is seeking funds for a large investment. However, the same does not go with alternative funding firms like Mantis Funding. These firms have not made assets their criteria for providing funds. They deal with unsecured funding and provide funds to businesses without asking for collaterals.

Apart from collaterals, Mantis Funding reviews applications based on their transactions instead of their credit score. They review their personal data to understand the cash flow and provide funds accordingly, which is not the case with the traditional financers.

History of profitability: No matter how compelling the idea is, banks will only fund a venture if the businessmen are able to show the established profitability of 2 or more years. Meanwhile, alt-financing firms like Mantis Funding understand the situations of SMEs and realize the financial disturbance they face in the market and consider the stories of their clients with a holistic assessment of their application to provide approval accordingly.

Traditional financers lack this kind of personal touch and are more focused on reducing their risk. Due to this, they tend to miss out on opportunities to help a small and medium cap enterprise. However, firms like Mantis Funding look for such opportunities and are ever-ready to help the SMEs. Besides, they understand the client’s need for quick funds and work to provide funds within 3-4 days of application approval.

All You Need To Know About Franchisee Financing With Alternative Lenders

Running a business under the protection of a well-known brand is a great way to make good profits. With a franchisee, you have the backing of an established marketing ecosystem, a recognized product, and a readymade customer base.

But along with all the advantages of working with a franchisor, you also have to manage many challenges. The biggest of these challenges is financial in nature. Purchasing a franchise is a substantial cost, but it is not the only one. Let’s delve further.

You need to put a lot of upfront investment on the table – While you might be able to make changes to cut costs with your own business, in a franchisee, you have to stick to certain minimum requirements. From the store décor to manufacturing or operating procedures to staff training, there is a fixed way of doing things with a franchisee. All of this can become quite costly in the long run.

Cash flow problems – Discounts, prepayments, and excess inventory can lead to cash flow problems. In order to attract new customers, many new franchisee owners offer additional discounts and deals – these obviously dent their own profits and can lead to such severe cash flow issues that meeting even the most urgent operating costs can become tough. In some cases, they also tend to overstock on good deals. While this is a good idea, in the long run, it does put current finances under stress.

Additional advertising and similar business costs – Many franchisee owners also have to invest out of their pockets on enhanced advertising, especially in the local area. This becomes critical for drumming up business, particularly for new franchisees or ones in very competitive localities. Extensive marketing efforts also require funds, which must come out from the profits of the owner.

How Do Franchise Owners Manage These Financial Challenges?

Most banks require an exhaustive amount of paperwork with the application and take a long time to share their approval decisions. And the truth is that first time and single-unit franchise owners are highly unlikely to qualify for a traditional banking offer even when their paperwork and FICO score are perfect. All this has turned franchise owners away from banks and towards alt-lenders such as Mantis Funding, which deliver super-fast funding at highly competitive costs.

How Alternative Finance Companies Help Franchise Owners?

Alternative lenders do away with all the bottlenecks that crop up while dealing with the traditional banking sector.

Fast approval and processing times – The waiting is reduced to just a few days! Where earlier a franchise owner might have had to wait for a few weeks just to know the status of their application, now they can get the money in their bank in less than 2 business days! Some lenders like Mantis Funding review and approve applications for smaller amounts in less than 24 hours!

Easy approvals – Another big advantage of alt-lenders is the fact that they have delinked their approval process from FICO scores. Credit scores still form a part of their risk assessment process but are not a deal-breaker, as is usually the case with traditional lenders. This means that franchise owners can get funded despite having a less-than-perfect credit score; the transactional and revenue data of the business matters more.

Customized offers – Along with the other vital points, such as speed and ease of funding, alternative lenders are also very popular because they offer a lot of scope for personalization. For example, Mantis Funding provides cash advances to tide over off-season cash flow problems as well as amounts over $200,000 in the form of a business line of credit. The business owner can choose the amount, negotiate better terms, and opt for the type of service that suits their needs best.

Are you operating a franchisee? Do write to us about your experience with cash flow problems and the solutions that worked for you.

How Merchant Cash Advance Service Is Helping In SME’s Business Growth?

The procedure of paying a lump sum amount of money in advance against an invoice is called a merchant cash advance service. Merchant cash advance service comes very handily, especially when a small or medium cap businessman requires some fast cash. This service offers quick pay-outs, thus reducing the waiting time, which is a common experience among the businessmen in a traditional funding environment.

Apart from all this, the biggest and the most significant benefit that you, as a businessman, can experience with Mantis Funding cash advance services is that it lets you receive cash against your future earnings. In this way, you will get the money in your hand whenever and wherever your business requires it the most.

What are the benefits of opting for cash advance services?

● Designed to suit and boost your business services.
● No strict requirements.
● High chances of approval.
● Less paperwork, faster service.
● Business owners can expect cash within 24 hours of approval.
● No need for staking assets as collaterals.

Working of merchant cash advance service:
Growth and cash are two basic things for any business. Many would also agree that they are co-related. How? When there is regular cash flow, there is growth and vice versa. However, in the long run of the venture, a businessman will face situations where cash flow may not be regular.

This is where you need fast cash. It is like an energy bar that gives an extra boost to halted operations. Be it a sudden need to purchase equipment or investing in some future location, Mantis Funding cash advance services have got you covered. The intriguing thing about Cash advances is the fact that you will get cash within 24-72 hours! That is, you don’t have to wait for a long time to do what’s best for your business.

How to repay the advance cash?
Merchant cash providers have designed an easy and smooth system for repayment. Firms like Mantis Funding with cash advance services provide you with the option of repaying them by a certain percent of your credit card’s daily deposit.

How do I know that I qualify for this service?
Qualifying for this type of funding is easier and faster than any other kind of traditional funding. The pre-requisites are relaxed, and the process of getting approval is super easy. Most of the funders don’t need paperwork for this process!

However, you need to maintain the past few ‘months’ bank statements so that your approval of the application is done quickly.

How to get the rate that suits my business?
This requires you to do your homework. To get the best rate, you need to have your options open and find a deal that resonates well with your business.

But before that you need to familiarize yourself with two terms:

Factor fee: Similar to the interest rate. This ranges between 1.4 and 1.8.

Holdback: In this, a certain portion of your daily credit or debit card sale is deducted from your bank to the merchant cash provider. This happens until the fund taken is repaid. The percentage lies between 10-20 percent.

As stated, cash is vital for growth. So, one should not compromise with this aspect and consult funding companies like Mantis Funding for their services. However, before coming to any decisions, the businessman should go through pages like Mantis Funding to understand what the company is all about.

Why Do Restaurant Business Owners Love Alternative Financing Deals?

The alternative financing sector is uniquely designed to serve the needs of the small business community. One can easily chalk up the rise of the whole alt-fin industry to the fact that it caters specifically to the under-financed SMEs of America.

The reason for the mutually beneficial partnership between alternative lenders and SMEs is not hard to fathom. Even though small businesses form over 99% of the American economy, they have been literally frozen out of the credit sector due to stringent guidelines and unhelpful business models of the traditional financial sector. In this barren economic landscape, alternative lenders have become founts of easy liquidity – helping many small businesses operate smoothly and expand effortlessly.

Restaurant and café owners find stable funding partners in the alternative financing sector

One of the industries that have really leveraged the various advantages of alt-finance is food and catering. According to the New York based financing company, Mantis Funding, Restaurant and café owners form the biggest group of clients approaching alt-lenders every year. Let’s understand why –

Manage Seasonality
Most businesses have well defined times of high demand, followed by troughs of lean times. Restaurants and cafes are no different. Along with seasonal demand, their revenues are also heavily dependent on location, time of the day or week, and new competitors popping up in the neighborhood.

For small business owners, an extended period of low demand can become difficult to manage – alternative lenders can be extremely helpful in these scenarios. Lenders such as Mantis Funding offer easy and quick funding deals such as merchant cash advances (MCAs) that can help restaurant and café owners to keep up with required payments while waiting for the business to pick up. They usually use MCAs for expenses such as paying salaries, utility bills, rent, insurance premiums, etc.

Expansion
If a café or a restaurant is successful, then most owners think of expansion. This could be adding more space to the existing place or moving to a new location or opening a second restaurant altogether.

Of course, any type of expansion plan must be backed by substantial investment, and as getting funding approval from banks is well neigh impossible, most restaurateurs and café owners turn to alternative lenders. Unlike the traditional banking sector, alt-lenders like Mantis Funding reviews applications based on the strength of the revenues brought in by the business.

They don’t base their entire approval process just on FICO scores; instead, they have a more robust system that uses a variety of data touchpoints (such as social media, revenue flow for the last year or quarter, pending invoices or expense tracking) for determining the creditworthiness of their clients.

Advertising And Marketing Expenses
Restaurants and cafés are heavily dependant on online reviews; almost everyone checks guest reviews and ratings before they pick a place to eat. This dominance of online reputation demands that business owners take a more proactive role in improving their position online. A sophisticated digital marketing effort costs money to set up and run, and using MCAs from alt-lenders is an excellent way to project the right online image.

The Bottom Line
Most small businesses don’t have significant liquidity needs, but they do need a leg up from time-to-time. With their easy and fast funding processes, alternative lenders are perfect credit partners for Restaurant and café owners. Whether you need a quick $2000 to pay utilities or a $200,000 to open a new restaurant – alt-lenders like Mantis Funding review applications quickly and wire money even faster.

Do get in touch with a trusted online alternative funding company to understand all your options.

Reimagining 2020 SME Economy with Fintech and Alternative Lending

It is no secret that 2020 will be the onset of a decade where the economy will primarily center around the SMEs. And this SME economy, in turn, will be heavily influenced by the alternative lending sector, which itself sees a prosperous growth through Fintech developments. In short, Fintech led alternative lending shall bring about a colossal hope for all SMEs that need accessible cash flow for refueling and business growth. Let’s delve further into this.

Understanding Key Areas

Before discussing automation, let us first understand the key operational areas for all types of lending. These include credit risk evaluation, underwriting, approval decision making, collection, servicing, documentation, etc.

These credit process elements will witness a high level of automation over the next decade. Thus, impacting the cash flow positively. Alternative lenders like Mantis Funding are already facilitating easily accessible cash flow through faster credit disbursals for small businesses.

Fintech Led Automation

Here’s how the lending process elements will see automation in 2020 and fuel the growth of the alternative lending sector.

1 – Online application system
This is already in place. By the next decade, almost every alternative lender will have an online financing application system to allow users to submit a funding request. Application forms would be customized to specific products detailing the essential documents to be uploaded. The entire process would be automated to the maximum extent possible.

2 – Risk evaluation
Traditionally, credit scores are used to evaluate the risks. But more and more alternative lenders like Mantis Funding reviews each application without weighing in credit scores. This element would witness advanced automation through artificial intelligence-led machine learning. Deep neural networks would be heavily used to collect data on applicants through non-traditional sources like accessing networks, social standing, utility bills, etc.

3 – Underwriting and decision making
The major objective of underwriting is to reduce, evaluate, and mitigate risk. With high automation, alternative lenders will be able to rely on a robust credit scoring model outside of the traditional credit scores. The seeds have already been sown. Alternative lenders like Mantis Funding review every application on the basis of their own scoring system without needing any collateral or traditional high credit scores. The system would also help loan officers make faster decisions by providing them detailed analytics and insights.

4 – Communication
The traditional method for an applicant to get in touch regarding the status of their application is to either call/email the credit officer or walk into their office. But with high automation, applicants would be able to log in to the customizable online credit processing portal and get a real-time update on the status of their application. Presently, alternative lenders like Mantis Funding are well known for their fast disbursals and active client support.

Payment alerts, credit servicing, credit updates, and digital statements are some more key areas that would get automated. With the high demand put upon the alternative lending sector, enhanced automation is undoubtedly the only way for the industry to keep growing and provide continuous customer satisfaction.

How to Raise Capital for Business Amplification?

Finding funds to expand a business venture is an arduous task for any entrepreneur. Funds play a very crucial part in the growth of any business and a pre-requisite for any business to sustain and grow while acing ahead of competition..

With the increasing resistance from banks to offer credit, there are countless more funding options like Mantis Funding available in the market, which was not the case in the past. Nevertheless, with the plethora of financial opportunities available to small businessmen, it becomes quite challenging to decide which option works well for the needs of the businessmen.

Raising Money By Yourself

Many entrepreneurs are quite headstrong and are ready to finance their business all by themselves. They will breeze past banks, sell their possessions, save money from their day job, and invest in various sectors; by doing all this, they can gather the required amount for diversification. Moreover, doing it all alone, one can gain complete control and be unburdened of the interest and strain from other avenues.

Seeking Venture Capital

This is also a good way of fetching capital for a start-up business. Searching for a venture capitalist, who believes in your ability to turn an idea into a profitable venture, is a good way of raising cash. However, this idea only works when you have a business model that is fine-tuned and is up to the scale of the investor. Moreover, the biggest problem in gaining this fund is that the capitalist is constantly looking for the next big thing in the market; hence, an entrepreneur might have issues matching the scale-ability of their enterprise.

Look For Micro-Financing Firms

Small scale businessmen ditch banks and other options so that they can get quick access to capital with the help of micro-financing firms like Mantis Funding. This is a wise option for the people who seek immediate financing solutions and have to take quick decisions for reaping maximum benefits from growing their enterprise.

These firms promote financial inclusion and cater to the financial needs of entrepreneurs with pressing needs. Taking a cash advance from companies like Mantis Funding not only helps in gaining money but also ensures that as an entrepreneur, you are getting valuable guidance and mentorship on how you should regulate the flow of cash in your company.

Family And Friends

Asking your family and friends to raise money for your venture can also be a good idea. One can solicit funds for short and long term from friends and family might lead to a little dispute down the line, but the advantage of this is that you don’t have to pay interest to them for the fund. This is a faster process and an easier one as well; further, it comes with flexible payback options. The drawback though, is that there is no clear understanding of the venture’s plan and its execution while the give and take of funds.

Before choosing an option, one should educate them about what they are opting for. When going for microbusiness firms, one should always have proper knowledge of their guidelines and look for reviews like that of Mantis Funding Reviews for their clear understanding.

How To Manage Your Small Business’ Working Capital With A Quick Cash Advance

Whenever a small or medium-scale businessmen find out that traditional sources of financing are no more helpful, it is none other than alternative financing that comes up as a savior. Renowned alternative lending companies like Mantis Funding offer lucrative funding deals keeping the requirements of small business owners in their minds.

All you need to do is simply apply for the required funds through online mode and give answers to some general questions about your business. If qualified, the funds will be transferred to your business account against your overall sales. So basically, you just have to ensure that the volume of sales is adequate enough to pay back the debt.

The best part of alternative or non-bank funding is that as soon as your application for funds is approved, you get the money in a lump sum in as quick as 24 hours and are free to spend it as you like for your business expansion! The period of such cash advance is generally short termed the repayment can be started right from the next week or month depending on your sales.

Advantages of Merchant Cash Advance

While traditional lending institutions like banks take ages to go through the application, crosscheck business models, verify financial statements, alternative lenders like Mantis Funding aim at making the application to fund transfer as fast as possible. In fact, unlike banks, alt-financing companies do not care about your credit history or credit score for approving your applications.

Rather they take into consideration other vital factors such as your business model, the revenue stream of your business, expenditure patterns, social media behavior, etc. to judge your creditworthiness. SME owners also prefer these companies over traditional lenders as companies like Mantis Funding Review each application with a broader perspective and offer customized deals and flexible cost structures that suit the nature of their business.

This is one of the most convenient and speedy ways to get access to cash for the growth and expansion of your business.

Finding the best alt-lending company

With a high level of competition even in the alternative lending industry, it might become tricky to choose one trustworthy and honest company. Since there is a lack of regulations and intervention by the government, there might be chances that you get cheated or get charged excessively without your consent through complex contracts.

Thus, the best way to find the most suitable company for your funding requirements is by looking up for reviews. For example, if you check out the Mantis Funding Reviews you will get to know how customer-centric the entire team of professionals is. You will also get to know about the experiences that previous customers have had with the company and how long did the representatives take to resolve any issue.

All these factors help you decide which alternative lending company can be best for you. After all, no businessman would ever like to get trapped in a contract that might be impossible to get out of.

How To Find Business Funding At The Best Rates?

For small businesses, every dollar counts! This is why all entrepreneurs are so careful about signing up on financing deals – a good rate can result in substantial savings, whereas a bad one can impact the long-term health of the company.

While banks might offer stable and competitive financing deals, they are virtually inaccessible for small businesses, especially if the business has a poor credit rating or a shaky financial history. Their business model and risk-averse corporate mindset make them favor larger and more stable companies, leaving small businesses frozen out of the credit market.

But, the last decade has seen the alternative financing industry ride to the rescue of the small business community – offering flexible, fair, and fast funding to SMEs across America.

However, the alternative lending industry in the US is HUGE – the total transaction value in the sector amounts to US$32,539.0m in 2019 – spread over 1,687 thousand customers. The industry is split across thousands of companies offering a vast range of financing deals. To find the best deal amongst the various alt-lenders, you must keep some things in mind –

Starting point – the search begins with you! You must first arrive at a clear idea of your requirements before you start approaching alt-lender.

Find the most reputable lender – ask around in the market to find trustworthy, long-standing companies in the alt-lending ecosystem. You want a lender who offers not only the cheapest terms but also someone who will support you through the process, provide excellent customer services and can be counted on to help in times of stress. A good example of this is the New York-based Mantis Funding, which has excellent online Mantis Funding reviews and word-of-mouth reputation.

Find funding options that suit your situation – different lenders have different offers, which means, for example, that the terms of a merchant cash advance with one lender could be different from another. The only way to find a suitable offer is to check with the reputable companies on your list. You must also remember to check the terms and rates attached to each offer.

Finding the right-fit offer ensures you only stay in debt for a minimum period of time – thus reducing the financial burden of repayment costs on your business.

Find out what is needed to complete the formalities – do you need to provide collateral, do you need a specific minimum credit score or transaction history? Which documents are mandatory? All these questions are vital to get the complete picture. A lender might advertise a smaller APR, but this might not apply to the type of funding you need, or it might have some particular condition attached to it.

Understanding ALL the details will ensure you don’t waste time applying to lenders whose final offering ends up being more expensive than what you originally planned for.

Check for predatory practices – do read the fine print to weed out malicious players. Some of these would try to trick you with undeclared fees, use balloon payments to make loan rates look smaller, or ask for extra charges at the last moment.

Look for signs in online reviews as these are a good judge of a company’s reputation. For example, Mantis Funding reviews paint a fair picture of the company’s reputation across all online forums. This is impossible to fake!

Negotiate – Always negotiate hard! Many alt-lenders, once they have approved you, will want to bring in a reputable new client. And many are willing to offer more comfortable terms to keep your business.

Even a little bit of relaxation in repayment costs or timelines can make a big difference for a small business. So, do give it a shot!

The Bottom Line: The fact is that even in the alternate financing sector, better credit history and strong financials will result in a better rate. BUT, lower rates are still possible without good FICO scores or collaterals. You just have to look harder and bargain smarter.