Small businesses often need funding to support or grow their operations. Lending marketplaces like Fundera help small business owners navigate their available loan options.
With a wide range of business lenders, Fundera aims to connect businesses with the funding they need. However, it might not be the right fit for every small business.
In this comprehensive review, we’ll explore Fundera’s features, benefits, drawbacks, and application process. We’ll provide insights into how the platform works to help you decide whether Fundera is right for your business.
Specifically, we’ll answer these questions and more:
Fundera is a financial technology (fintech) company that acts as a business funding matchmaker. It helps connect entrepreneurs with different business lenders.
Part of Fundera’s approach is simplifying the funding process by providing a lending marketplace where companies can find suitable small business loans. Whether you’re a startup looking for capital or an established business needing rapid finance, Fundera offers various loan options to cater to your specific needs.
The company was founded in 2013 and operates as a subsidiary of NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Since its inception, Fundera has helped fund over $2 billion in loans to small businesses.
Its mission is to provide accessible and transparent financing options to help small businesses grow and thrive. Fundera is headquartered in New York City, New York.
Fundera offers a variety of loan options to meet different business needs.
One option provided by Fundera is term loans. These are traditional installment loans with fixed repayment terms and interest rates.
With a term loan, you receive a lump sum of money upfront and then repay it over a set period, usually ranging from one to five years. This type of loan can be used for various purposes, such as purchasing equipment, expanding your business, or covering unexpected expenses.
Fundera’s lenders also offer Small Business Administration (SBA) loans. These loans are partially guaranteed by the U.S. government, making them less risky for lenders and more accessible for small businesses.
SBA loans typically have longer repayment terms and lower interest rates than traditional bank loans. They can be used for various purposes, such as starting a new business, acquiring an existing business, or refinancing existing debt. You can also use SBA funding for commercial real estate loans.
If you need flexibility in accessing funds whenever necessary, Fundera provides business lines of credit as well. A line of credit works like a credit card, where you have access to a certain amount of money that you can borrow from as needed.
You only pay interest on the amount borrowed and can reuse the funds once repaid. This option is ideal for managing cash flow fluctuations or handling unexpected expenses.
For businesses that deal with unpaid invoices from customers, Fundera offers invoice financing solutions. With invoice financing, you can get immediate cash by selling your outstanding invoices to a factoring company.
They will then advance you a percentage of the invoice value and handle the collection process. Once your customer pays, you receive the remaining amount minus fees. This option can help improve your cash flow without waiting for customers to settle their invoices.
Fundera offers equipment financing solutions to help businesses purchase the equipment they need to operate and grow. Whether it’s for machinery, vehicles, or technology, Fundera provides access to loans and leases with flexible terms and competitive rates. With a streamlined application process and personalized support, Fundera makes it easy for businesses to secure equipment loans.
Fundera offers Merchant Cash Advances as a financing option for businesses needing immediate cash flow. This type of financing allows businesses to receive a lump sum of money upfront in exchange for a percentage of future sales.
It is a quick and convenient way for businesses to access capital without collateral or a lengthy approval process. Fundera’s Merchant Cash Advances can be used for various purposes, such as purchasing equipment, expanding inventory, or covering unexpected expenses.
Fundera offers short-term loans that provide quick access to funds for small businesses. These loans are designed to meet the immediate financial needs of businesses, whether it’s for working capital, inventory purchases, or equipment upgrades
Fundera offers startup business loans that provide financing options for entrepreneurs looking to launch or expand their ventures. These loans are specifically designed to meet the unique needs of startups, offering flexible terms and competitive interest rates. With Fundera’s startup business loans, entrepreneurs can access the capital they need to invest in equipment, inventory, marketing, or other business expenses necessary for growth and success.
The company doesn’t provide loan amounts or interest rates because it provides access to various options. The available programs include:
As a lending marketplace, Funderal doesn’t make final credit decisions. That depends on the lender where the company matches you. However, it does provide some guidance on eligibility requirements for its customers who were approved for a loan.
Here are the average approval requirements by loan type.
It is not a direct lender, meaning it doesn’t originate or approve loans. Fundera is a lending marketplace that attempts to match you with various lenders. It works with relatively few lenders, so it has stricter requirements than more robust marketplaces.
While Fundera strives to connect borrowers with reliable lenders offering competitive rates, the cost ultimately comes down to the lender where Fundera matches you. Fundera does not charge applicants any direct fees.
Instead, the lender pays a fee to Fundera (usually 2%-5% of the loan amount) when it closes and funds a loan. If you don’t get matched to a lender or don’t accept a loan offer, Fundera doesn’t get paid.
The fee Fundera receives is similar to a broker fee. Sometimes, the lender will attempt to pass that fee onto the borrower as an administrative or origination fee. Prospective borrowers must do their due diligence before committing to any loan agreement. Carefully review all terms and conditions lenders provide before making a final decision.
To help borrowers make informed decisions about their financing options, Fundera offers the assistance of funding advisors. These experts can guide borrowers through the process by providing personalized advice tailored to their unique circumstances.
They can help compare interest rates and fees from different lenders so that borrowers can choose the most suitable option. In addition, it offers self-service tools such as business loan calculators and an FAQ section.
Fundera does not publish information about a referral partner program on its website, but some sources suggest it has an affiliate program. ISOs and loan brokers should contact Fundera about offering its lending products to their small business clients.
Applying for a business loan through Fundera is a straightforward process that can be done entirely online. Fundera understands that time is of the essence. They strive to make their approval process as efficient as possible.
Let’s walk through the step-by-step guide to understand how it works.
Start by visiting the Fundera website and clicking the “Apply Now” button. You will be directed to an application form where you’ll need to provide basic information about your business, such as its name, industry, and location. Fill out the necessary fields in the application form accurately and completely. This includes details about your revenue, time in business, and credit score.
Once you’ve completed the application form, submit it along with any required documents that Fundera may request. These documents might include bank statements, tax returns, or financial statements.
After submitting the initial application, you can expect a response within 24-48 hours from a loan specialist at Fundera. If your loan request is approved, you will receive multiple offers from different lenders matched specifically to meet your business needs. Take some time to review each offer carefully before making a decision on which one best suits your requirements.
Once you’ve chosen an offer, work closely with your assigned loan specialist, who will guide you through the final steps of completing the funding process.
You’ll work with your lending specialist and the lender where you matched to finalize and close the loan. Depending on the loan type and lender, you could receive your funds in as little as 24 hours. Some loans, like SBA loans, take longer to close and fund.
After successfully securing funding through Fundera, small business owners can expect a streamlined and efficient post-funding process. The lending marketplace understands the importance of timely access to funds and aims to provide a seamless experience for its clients.
Fundera provides access to a user-friendly online portal where business owners can easily manage their funding and track progress. This portal lets them view their loan details, make payments, and access necessary documents or reports.
It also offers flexible repayment options tailored to the specific needs of each business owner. They understand that cash flow can fluctuate, especially for small businesses, and aim to provide repayment plans that are manageable and sustainable.
One of the most significant advantages of using Fundera is that they provide a funding advisor who will assist you in finding the best loan offers from different lenders. This means you don’t have to spend hours researching and comparing loan options yourself. The funding advisor will do all the legwork for you, saving you time and effort.
As a funding advisor, Fundera aims to provide transparency throughout the lending process. They disclose any fees involved upfront so businesses know all costs associated with borrowing money. This ensures that there are no surprises or hidden charges down the line.
Another advantage of Fundera is its streamlined loan application process. They understand that time is of the essence, so they’ve made sure to make their application process as quick and efficient as possible. With Fundera, you can expect rapid finance without any unnecessary delays.
Fundera offers a diverse range of financing options to suit different business needs. Whether you’re just starting or looking for additional funds to expand your operations, they have loans tailored specifically for startups and small businesses.
One potential drawback of using Fundera Loans is that it may be challenging to find suitable lenders for specific loan requirements. Since Fundera acts as an intermediary between borrowers and lenders, there is a possibility that they may not have partnerships with every lender offering the exact type of loan you need. This could result in additional time spent searching for alternative lenders that can meet your specific financing requirements.
Fundera Loans may not offer as many options. While they provide various business financing solutions, borrowers seeking personal funding or specifically tailored SBA loans might find their choices limited. It’s essential to consider this factor when deciding whether Fundera is the right platform for your loan needs.
When utilizing Fundera Loans, borrowers must typically work with a funding advisor throughout the lending process. While this can be beneficial regarding receiving guidance and support, it also means that direct access to loan offers from various lenders might be limited. Some borrowers prefer having more control over their finances and exploring different options independently without relying on an intermediary.
While Fundera Loans offers quick finance options, it’s essential to note that these quick funding solutions may come with higher interest rates than traditional term loans or other forms of financing. This is because the convenience and speed provided by fast funding often come at a premium cost. Borrowers should carefully evaluate their financial situation and determine if the benefits of fast access to funds outweigh the potential drawbacks of higher interest rates.
Here is a summary of the benefits and drawbacks of Fundera to help you decide if it’s right for your business.
Yes, Fundera is a legitimate lending marketplace and a trusted funding advisor specializing in helping businesses find suitable financing options. They have established themselves as a reliable source for startup loans, with positive reviews and a vast network of lenders. The company has been Better Business Bureau (BBB) accredited since 2016 and has an A+ rating on the watchdog site.
Fundera has primarily positive reviews but has its share of negative reviews. It has a Trustpilot rating of 4.4 out of 5 on over 900 reviews. On Google, it has a rating of 4 out of 5 with over 130 reviews.
Fundera’s positive reviews often highlight several common themes. One of the most frequent themes is the excellent customer service. Many customers appreciate the friendly and knowledgeable support they receive throughout the loan application process.
Another common theme is the ease and convenience of using Fundera’s platform. Customers often mention how user-friendly the website is and how it simplifies the loan application process.
Additionally, Fundera is often praised for its transparency and honesty. Customers appreciate the clear and straightforward information provided about loan options, rates, and terms. Another theme that emerges from positive reviews is the speed and efficiency of Fundera’s loan approval process. Many customers mention how quickly they received funding after submitting their applications.
Finally, Fundera’s competitive rates and favorable loan terms are frequently mentioned as reasons for customer satisfaction. Overall, Fundera’s positive reviews highlight the exceptional customer service, user-friendly platform, transparency, speed, and competitive rates that the company offers.
The most common themes in Fundera’s negative reviews can be summarized as follows. Many customers expressed dissatisfaction with the customer service provided by Fundera, citing long wait times, unhelpful representatives, and difficulty in resolving their issues.
Another common theme is the lack of transparency in the loan application process, with customers feeling misled or not given all the necessary information upfront. Additionally, some customers mentioned experiencing high-interest rates and fees, leading to financial strain.
Fundera may deny your loan request because each lender has its own specific eligibility criteria. This means that even if you meet Fundera’s general requirements, you may still be denied a loan because you don’t meet the specific criteria of a particular lender. It’s important to understand that different lenders have different risk appetites and lending preferences.
If Fundera denies your loan application, don’t worry! There are plenty of lenders and marketplaces that can help you find funding. Most alternative lenders have lower eligibility requirements as well.
You can find many lenders that offer business term loans, business lines of credit, merchant cash advances, invoice financing, and equipment financing. While there are fewer SBA-approved lenders and marketplaces, you can still find many online lenders offering SBA loans.
You might also be interested in one of the following small business loans:
Fundera is best suited for small businesses and startups that need help navigating funding options. It offers a variety of small business loan options to meet the specific needs of different businesses.
However, Fundera business loans may not be suitable for certain businesses. For example, businesses that have a low credit score or a limited operating history may face difficulties in securing funding through Fundera.
Additionally, businesses that require large amounts of capital or have complex financial needs may find Fundera’s offerings insufficient. It is essential for businesses to carefully assess their funding needs and consider alternative options if they do not meet Fundera’s criteria.
Based on user reviews and the available options, we rate Fundera at 3.8 out of 5. It’s a solid option, but the strict eligibility requirements and lower borrowing amounts make it less suitable for some businesses.
Disclaimer: The Fundera by NerdWallet trademark is owned by NerdWallet Inc., and its use herein is for reference purposes only, and it does not indicate sponsorship or endorsement from NerdWallet Inc.