More women are getting into the business environment, a claim that has substantiated with a study that revealed that women-owned business account for about 39% of all companies in the United States. Over the last twenty years, the number of women-owned U.S. businesses has increased at the impressive rate of 114%. However, one of the biggest challenges faced by female entrepreneurs is the access to affordable financing. With several financing options claiming to be the best business loans for women, it is sometimes difficult for business owners to determine the most suitable option.
Loans From the Small Business Administration (SBA)
The SBA, through partnerships with financial firms, offers a several business loans for female entrepreneurs. These loans are also available to businesses that might not qualify for other forms of funding and come with relatively lower interest rates. However, SBA loans can be relatively difficult to get due to the competition and of course, the amount available.
Loans from a Local Female-centered Group in Your Region
Many states have local groups that are dedicated to supporting women-owned businesses. Women’s Economic Ventures is one of such programs, providing financial aid to businesses based out of Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties in California.
Loans from Traditional Banking Institutions
While getting loans from traditional banking institutions have become increasingly difficult since the recession, banks still remain a source of funding for businesses, including women-owned enterprises. However, most small business owners who try to obtain financing from a bank usually end up spending a lot of time collecting requested documents and enduring a long application process only to have their application rejected.
Peer-to-peer Business Loans
The internet has also contributed to the growth of women-owned businesses in the US and across the globe with the emergence of several peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platforms such as Funding Circle and Lending Club.