Small businesses can find themselves at a point of conflict when they need to make a large purchase but paying the entire cost up front could potentially put their cash flow in jeopardy. At that point, smart business owners will often start exploring their financing options.
If you find yourself in this situation, we hope it’s because your company is enjoying success and looking to expand. At the same time, it is also quite possible that you simply need to replace equipment that has broken down or become obsolete. Either way, you probably aren’t looking forward to the expense already, but then there’s also the headache that can sometimes come with trying to find appropriate funding for your business needs.
The good news is that you may find this process much easier than expected, especially if you know a thing or two about the key differences between traditional and private financing. And if you happen to be a new entrepreneur or you have a unique situation, like perhaps an atypical income flow, you just might find that a private lender will be best suited for handling your company’s financing needs.
RELATED: Equipment Financing Options
For the average small company, there are a handful of business funding options available to buy the equipment they need. Not all of them are well-suited to all types of businesses, so please consider this a starting point that may require more investigation. That said, options can include:
For nearly all businesses, it makes sense to take out a loan with the most favorable terms that their qualifications allow. Even if your business doesn’t have a high credit score, or you’re concerned that financing is too expensive, there may be some good options available for you. Private business financing often comes with more flexibility than banks and lenders that can work with you to find a solution that fits your needs.
RELATED: How Private Equipment Financing Works: 5 Myths Debunked
A traditional lender, like a bank, is regulated by the federal government. Due to the strict regulations that these financial institutions must adhere to, banks tend to be rather inflexible. And they often reject new small businesses immediately for loans because of an unwillingness to assume the kind of risk they believe comes with a lack of an established history of profitability.
Private commercial lenders, on the other hand, have significantly greater flexibility and may loan to the small businesses that banks consider to be too risky. Along with flexibility, private organizations can have different application processes that can work in the favor of businesses.
While a bank has a rigid set of questions they must ask—even if the nature of one viable company is drastically different than that of another, equally viable company in a different industry—a private lender can get to know your business’s specific situation. With that information, they determine their level of confidence in your business model. And that’s why private financing companies can accept businesses that might not have the perfect established history that banks need to see.
Naturally, there is a bit of tradeoff here. Because banks are more highly selective, they often have better interest rates. But that becomes a moot point for an applicant who has been denied by their bank. Fortunately, you can find a private financing company who will work with you to find options that make sense for your business.
Let’s take a closer look at some specific areas where you find the biggest differences between banks and private lenders:
The basic truth of the matter here is that your credit score matters, regardless as to who your lender is. That said, banks typically have higher minimum credit score requirements. A private lender has more flexibility to possibly accept an applicant with a lower credit score, especially if there are other factors that offset this potential risk. (It is worth noting here that “lower” and “low” are not the same.)
This can be helpful for applicants who perhaps experienced an adverse event that greatly affected their credit score. While a bank might be quick to pull out the “REJECTED” rubber stamp, a private financing company is more likely to understand what happened and may still be able to work with you and potentially find a way to lend you the money you are seeking.
As we had just mentioned, interest rates are a key distinction. But along with willingness to take risk (or not), another factor at play is that banks have access to funds, that they in turn issue for loans, from both using their customers’ deposits and borrowing federal funds. The access to this kind of capital contributes to lower interest rates for those who qualify for bank loans.
Bank loans are governed with layers of regulation, which makes the loan process less than expedient. If you don’t need the funding urgently, your credit is pristine, and your company has an extensive history of success, it might be worth waiting in order to get a more favorable rate. However, private lenders that keep the approval process in-house are much faster. In fact, there are times when you may find that your application was approved the same day you applied. That can be absolutely critical to keeping a business running when a machine breaks down and needs to be replaced.
RELATED: How Do Commercial Financing Partners Evaluate Loan Applications?
A traditional loan from a bank typically has no flexibility when it comes to repayment. You owe your monthly payments, every month, and missing payment too many times can put you in default. And that is the case even if your company is in an industry where cash flow can be seasonal in nature or there are extenuating circumstances. Private financiers, at their discretion, can potentially offer a more flexible arrangement or loan option, like a buyout lease.
At Team Financial Group, we offer private business loans with a personal touch. We invest our time in getting to know you and your business, and this allows us to better understand your unique challenges and see how we might help you find more success.
With over 20 years in operation, our team has a wealth of knowledge to guide our financing decisions. Above and beyond that, we also are happy to share our knowledge and insight to help businesses like yours grow. And clients seem to appreciate it. Joel Eerdmans—owner of JDE Concrete—said, “I most certainly view Team as if they are part of my unofficial Board of Directors” after we were able to help his company navigate equipment financing options. The fact he considers our guidance to have been pivotal to navigating acquisitions means a lot to us.
Another client, Michael Husby, had purchased a rundown golf course that he and his wife believed had potential. To turn things around, he needed to acquire several pieces of turf equipment, and we provided Michael with competitive, flexible financing for them. We were excited to see the progress as he turned his course into one of the premier golf experiences in Northern Michigan. Michael said, “We may have never reached our goals without the help of Team Financial. They trusted our plan and provided us excellent financial counsel.”
As we’ve noted, sometimes businesses have fluctuating cash flow or lagging revenue situations due to the nature of their industry. While traditional lenders turn away good, profitable companies like these, we see the bigger picture. An example of this is American Apple, a farm-based business that just needed someone who could find a solution that worked with their finances. We even found a way that allowed them to take advantage of tax benefits.
Hopefully, you can see that we want to use our knowledge to help businesses grow. More than that, we are always willing to put in the work to identify solutions that make sense for your company. In some cases, that means offering same-day turnaround on private business loan applications. This makes Team Financial a fast, flexible option for small businesses throughout Michigan and the Midwest.
We consider ourselves fortunate to be in a position where we’ve been able to help many small business owners in a wide array of unique situations. If you’d like to get a better look at our extensive track record and hear what others have to say about Team Financial, feel free to check out our collection of success stories.
And if a bank or other lender has already told you “No,” don’t give up. With private business loans and equipment financing, your company still has plenty of opportunities to get what you need to grow and prosper. If we happen to be the right fit for you, maybe your business will be our next client success story!
Now that you know about us, we’d love the opportunity to learn about your company and financing needs. To see what we can do for you, simply give us a call at 616-735-2393 or fill out our online form and we’ll schedule a time to talk.
Purchasing new business equipment is a vital step for staying efficient and competitive. At the same time, making a major purchase is rarely easy. Many different factors can come into play and it’s wise to invest some time on the front end to ensure you ultimately make the right call.
Here at Team Financial Group, we know that your business is your livelihood, how you provide for your loved ones, and a source of personal pride. And since we sincerely want to see your company succeed, we’ve compiled a handful of tips for purchasing new business equipment. (Of course, if you’ve got your eye on the used equipment market, you can always check out our guide for purchasing used equipment.)
When you are considering purchasing equipment for your business, an essential first step is to ask yourself what kind of value it can bring to your business. While this might seem obvious, it’s also critical for ensuring that you choose the right equipment and timing to meet your business goals, and this includes asking questions like:
In cases like this, where you are evaluating the necessity and impact of new equipment, it isn’t always possible to get hard data. But if you can at least estimate or measure the revenue increase you ultimately achieve from buying new equipment, you can then make a better call as to whether this purchase is a want or a need. And this data can also prove to be valuable when you talk to lenders about your equipment financing options.
When you consider taking on a business equipment loan for your company, it could be tempting to buy the lowest-cost equipment that just gets the job done, to keep your monthly payment low. While that is certainly understandable, it’s worth keeping in mind that the purchase price is only one aspect of equipment cost.
Maintenance, repairs, and operating costs all can quickly turn a seemingly good deal into a money pit. For that reason, it’s important to conduct at least a little brand research, particularly because something reliable from a reputable brand may cost more upfront but ultimately prove to be a much better value than the cheapest option on the market from an unknown name.
Equipment loans can be a big imposition for small businesses, and choosing the right supplier is critical. For some types of business equipment, this could be the start of a long relationship with ongoing service or support needs.
RELATED: 5 Effective Tips for Choosing the Right Equipment Supplier for Your Business
Of course, it’s quite important to be realistic about how this purchase may affect the future of your business. If monthly payments cause too many issues with your working capital, then it doesn’t matter how this equipment streamlines your day-to-day operations. No major purchase should put your entire business in jeopardy.
However, if you determine that acquiring new equipment is the smart move for your company but you’re looking at lean income for the next few months before business picks up – such as in the case for seasonal businesses – you still have options for financing. An independent lender like Team Financial Group has the flexibility to work with you and find an immediate solution. You still need to qualify for financing, but unlike traditional lenders, we want to understand how your business works and give you the opportunity to share how this is merely a temporary blip on the radar.
Your short-term outlook may be a little sparse, but that is a part of a healthy business cycle in certain industries. Team Financial can assess the big picture and work to find financing options that make sense for you and your company.
Before making any decisions about replacing outdated equipment, you should talk to your accountant. The timing of your business equipment purchase can make a difference in your tax deductions, such as how you claim depreciation.
You may find out that leased assets would provide a bigger advantage for your organization, since you can typically deduct your payments with equipment leases.
By discussing this with your accountant, you can create a strategy that fits your business plan and gives you the best possible tax benefits. Part of this entails being strategic about the timing of your purchase. After all, while you probably don’t want to wait long before buying equipment for your business, doing so could potentially save money.
RELATED: Get These Tax Benefits With Commercial Equipment Financing
Now, this approach doesn’t make sense for every business scenario. For example, if you own a local gym, you can’t exactly outsource the treadmills. However, if you are looking at an especially high-cost piece of equipment or a special operation, you may find it worthwhile to price out the cost of outsourcing to a third party. This can especially make sense if we’re talking about a very small part of your business, one where infrequent use means there would be a lot of idle time for the equipment.
Most business owners expect to buy equipment outright or use financing to purchase equipment. However, there are other financing options that you might not have considered. Operating leases, for example, can be a great way to save money on equipment that quickly becomes obsolete as technology advances.
At Team Financial, we offer a $1 Buyout Lease (which is structured like a capital lease). You “lease” the equipment from us, but the equipment is on your balance sheet as an asset, and at the end of the lease you have the option to buy the equipment from us for as little as $1.
We also offer a Fair Market Value Lease (which is structured like an operating lease). This is a more traditional lease scenario where you pay no money down, make lease payments on the equipment, and at the end of the term you can choose to purchase the equipment for fair market value or hand it back to us.
Want to see if a lease might be a better option than traditional financing? Take advantage of our free equipment lease calculator to see what makes the most sense for your business.
RELATED: $1 Buyout Lease vs. FMV Lease: What’s the Difference?
Equipment costs can vary widely from new to used markets. This is worth knowing for small businesses that may need a frugal option to help keep their cash flow healthy because purchasing used equipment can potentially fill that need without breaking the bank.
A contemporary example of this is taking advantage of an increase in companies opting to go with fully remote offices and purchasing used furniture (instead of buying new).
While it’s not uncommon to think that you need to cover the entire purchase price upfront when buying used, the fact of the matter is that independent lenders like Team Financial Group can have an abundance of experience in finding financing options for used equipment purchases.
RELATED: What Types of Equipment Can I Receive Financing For?
No matter what industry you’re in, what type of equipment you need, or what kind of financing solution you’re looking for, Team Financial Group is here to answer your questions and provide financial resources to help your business succeed.
What sets us apart from the competition is the relationships we develop with our customers. Others may ask you to just fill out a form before approving or rejecting your application. For us, it’s important to get to know you and your business on a deeper level. That’s why our clients come to us not only for financing, but also for financial advice and guidance. And when you toast your successes, we want to be holding a glass next to you.
If you want to contact us today with any questions or concerns, simply give us a call at 616-735-2393 or fill out our online form. Our team of financing experts is here to guide you through any major purchase and find the best flexible financing solution for your business.
Even though Travis Gemmel had exceptional credit and money saved up, he was having a frustrating experience trying to get financing for his new excavating business, Walnut Grove Excavating. Banks were turning him away simply because his company didn’t have an extensive track record yet. But Travis knew the business was going to thrive, if only he could get access to the equipment it would take to grow.
And that’s where Team Financial Group enters the picture, but let’s go back to Travis’s story.
Travis had a solid job with a fantastic West MI-based company. The problem was, he found that the higher he climbed the corporate ladder, the less he was able to do what he really loves – working with customers. As he was wrestling with this, Travis and his wife bought an old farmhouse to renovate.
During the renovation process, Travis had a hard time finding someone to take on excavation for their project. Excavation companies simply were not getting back to him, and that made him aware of an opportunity to start a business.
Since owning his own company had been a lifelong dream, this was an exciting prospect. Travis reached out within the industry to find out if it was realistic to start an excavating business that took on jobs the other companies were too busy to handle (or even call back potential customers). Based on his research, it sounded completely viable, and he was one step closer to achieving that dream of being a business owner.
So, in 2017 Travis launched Walnut Grove Excavating, a Lowell-based company that provides services throughout the greater Grand Rapids community.
Having a solid business plan, excellent credit, and money saved, unfortunately, isn’t enough for banks to provide financing. When Travis went to traditional lenders, the fact that he simply didn’t have professional excavating experience became a setback.
This is a common experience. While banks are institutional structures that become “too big to fail” and can offer decent rates, they can have stringent requirements that don’t take the big picture into account. And the application process doesn’t enable them to truly understand the individuals and businesses who could become loyal customers.
Fortunately for Travis, and other entrepreneurs and businesses, there are other financing options available. Private lenders, like Team Financial Group, can devote time to listening to customers and understanding their business models and situations. By doing so, we can help finance more companies and give entrepreneurs a better chance at realizing their own dreams.
Before coming to Team Financial, Travis had been renting equipment and it was enabling him to start growing his fledgling company. But he was getting to the point where he needed more, and it was obvious the banks were not going to provide any assistance.
While talking with an equipment supplier about his struggles in getting financing, Travis was recommended to give Team Financial Group a chance to see if we could help him. He took the recommendation, applied for financing, and was able to secure the money he needed to purchase a dump truck for his company.
“That loan was huge for me,” Travis said. “Getting the dump truck allowed us to double our growth. They helped me a lot.”
In addition to the actual financing itself, Travis appreciated the process and how he was treated. He says that it’s great to work with a company that focuses on people and shows how much they care through actions. Travis recalled how, when meeting with Corey Sandner (Team Financial Group’s director of equipment finance services), “the owner came by and checked in. Not as an interrogation – just interested to see how I was doing.”
Since working with Team Financial Group, Travis has been able to finance multiple pieces of equipment. And this has led to him growing Walnut Grove Excavating from a single-person operation in 2017 to a team of eight (so far) in 2022.
Travis’s company is a full-service excavator that mainly focuses on septic system replacement work for residential customers, which is around 80% of his business. Walnut Grove also handles some commercial work as well.
As a one-stop shop, services Travis provides include driveway installs, culverts, new foundations, final grading, septic systems, water lines, sewer hookups, drain field installations, and demolition. If someone else would be a better fit for a customer’s project, though, he’s happy to help them find the person they need. And that aligns with his mission to focus on exceptional customer service.
To learn more about Walnut Grove Excavating, check out their website. And if you live in West Michigan and happen to need excavating services, Travis provides free quotes. If you need excavation and work and would like one, you can connect with him here.
No matter your industry, or the services or products you provide, a key part of your company’s ability to be sustainable and profitable is having the right tools and equipment to get the job done. Since this holds true for virtually every enterprise, at some point your business will likely have equipment needs. When that happens, having access to financing that makes sense for your company is essential.
Unfortunately, finding the right financing can be a real struggle for companies. And that doesn’t even start to touch on the difficulties some businesses have in getting approval once they think they’ve found a path forward. While this is a frustrating situation, you may have more options than you realize.
Since a primary goal here at Team Financial Group is to help you grow your business by helping you get the equipment it needs to thrive, let’s look at financing possibilities and see what would make sense for you and your company.
Already sure you want to join the hundreds of businesses that have chosen Team Financial Group over the past two decades? Feel free to reach out and see how we can help you!
Naturally, if you are in the process of exploring financing for business equipment, you’ve likely performed a fair amount of work on the front end. This typically entails steps like:
Doing all that work can take a lot of time and effort. Given that you don’t want that to go to waste, the next step is crucial – evaluating financing options.
Once you know exactly what you want, it’s time to create your plan for how you are going to finance the new assets. There are a handful of general options for financing the equipment you are purchasing or leasing. And as you’d expect, each has its own respective set of pros and cons.
When people think about borrowing money, traditional bank loans are typically what come to mind first. These brick-and-mortar financial institutions are usually considered to be safe options, especially compared to some online options. And they may be able to offer low rates and favorable loan terms.
One downside to taking this approach is that the standards to qualify for a loan with a bank are often quite high. Another is that the loan process itself can be lengthy and complicated, and even more so if you happen to make a mistake or accidentally miss something while filling out an application. And their inflexibility can extend to the fact they don’t devote enough effort into truly understanding the nature of businesses that are applying. That is a problem for companies with unique business structures, revenue streams, and tax situations.
While a traditional bank might be a good choice for a conventional business that has a proven track record, ample documentation, and the ability to wait long periods for possible approval and dispersal of funds, that situation certainly doesn’t apply to every company.
In some regards, going to a credit union for a loan to finance business equipment can be a similar experience as going to a bank. These financial institutions are usually reputable, offer loans backed by the Small Business Administration (SBA), and may have favorable interest rates. Unlike most banks, though, credit unions normally do tend to offer a more personal touch.
Credit unions can extend that personal touch, though, because you typically need to be a member and meet certain eligibility requirements. Along with that, accessibility is commonly limited because they tend to have fewer branches than traditional banks. Also limited can be their service offerings, including types of loans offered.
If a business is able to meet a bank’s criteria and willing to undergo a similar process, a credit union could make sense for a business loan. The limited services, though, doesn’t give them as much flexibility as other available alternatives.
When high qualification standards or long wait times make someone hesitant to go to a bank or credit union to find financing for business equipment, they may turn to the internet for another possible source. While online loans can appeal to those who might not have the strongest personal credit or are looking for fast funding, there are some important considerations to keep in mind.
The most obvious concern with an online lender is that you cannot walk into an office to discuss matters in person. Some individuals may feel comfortable with this kind of arrangement, but it’s more common to have greater ease when you can look into someone’s eyes. Related to the lack of a brick-and-mortar office, it can be highly difficult to develop a proper relationship with an online lender. That can affect their ability to get to know your business and offer solutions that make sense for you, not just them.
Perhaps the biggest knock against online lenders is potential security concerns. While all financial institutions in the modern world use technology and the internet to varying degrees, entering financial information online can be risky, especially when you don’t have the option of an in-person visit if a serious problem arises.
As noted, this is a possibility for companies who are only concerned with getting money fast or worried about being approved at a bank or credit union. There is certainly a higher risk factor in pursuing this avenue, however, and borrowers miss out on the benefits of a lender that has a physical office.
Even though they might not have wide-ranging appeal, a couple of financing alternatives worth at least briefly mentioning are small-business grants and crowdfunding.
Small-business grants are typically offered through nonprofits, government agencies, and some corporations, and tend to be focused on specific industries or types of business owners. Because there are usually highly specific requirements to qualify, it can take a lot of time and effort to find and apply for appropriate grants. Along with that, the prospect of free financing has an obvious appeal that causes a high demand, thereby decreasing the odds for a company to receive the grant.
Unlike grants, which have existed for quite some time, crowdfunding is a very recent phenomenon. The two are similar, however, in the fact that the odds of this being a viable option for a business seeking to finance equipment are quite low. While crowdfunding could possibly work for a business that captures the public’s interest or has extremely popular products or services, this is not a realistic endeavor.
Now that we’ve seen how these options each come with various concerns—difficult approval processes, inflexibility, possible security issues, no physical offices—it’s easy to understand why finding financing that makes sense for your company could be a frustrating experience. The good news here is that you still have another choice: private commercial equipment financing.
In this case, we’re talking about working with a private lender, like Team Financial Group, who can provide you with flexible options that work for your company’s unique structure and circumstances. Even better is when you can choose a financing partner who sincerely cares about your success.
Going with a private lender is a smart approach if you don’t want to jump through hoops, only to then wait around and possibly jump through some more hoops. Instead, you can start your application and have experienced equipment financing specialists do the rest. This kind of service means that you may even receive same-day approval and funding.
Of course, that depends on circumstances, but private commercial equipment financing partners will work with you and find the right solution for your business. A couple of these solutions include equipment financing agreements and leasing services.
If you come to Team Financial Group for your financing, this is one of the possible arrangements we might recommend. In this case, there are fixed monthly payments, and at the end of the term you don’t have any further obligation. It’s a popular choice that can protect against rising interest rates and allow you to own and depreciate your equipment. This can be particularly advantageous for long-term assets that retain value.
If the equipment you need is a kind that becomes obsolete over time, you may benefit from a leasing option. Doing so can help you manage the costs that come with continually updating equipment, especially because they typically carry a lower payment. Since we’re talking about leasing, you don’t own the equipment, but you can purchase it at term end. As we talk through your specific needs and goals, you might find this to be the right option and we can then work to make it happen.
As an independently owned commercial equipment financing company, Team Financial Group has the flexibility to help your business, no matter the industry or stage of development. We have provided over $600 million in funds for businesses since we opened the doors back in 2001. And we’ve accomplished this by providing fast, flexible financing while applying common-sense lending principles and developing lasting relationships with our customers.
If you are seeking financing for commercial equipment of virtually any kind (manufacturing, agricultural, construction, other), we’re here for you. More than that, we’ll take time to listen to you and understand your business before helping find a solution that makes sense for you.
Now that you know our story and mission, we’d love the opportunity to hear yours. Please feel free to give us a call at 616-735-2393 or fill out our online form to see exactly what we can do to help you get the equipment your company needs to succeed.
Securing any kind of legitimate loan always includes jumping through a few hoops. For small business owners, those hoops can be numerous and difficult to navigate.
The fact of the matter is that getting a small business loan for equipment can sometimes be quite hard. It can be common for entrepreneurs not to get the financing they want, at least not right away.
Fortunately, small businesses don’t have to rely solely on the traditional methods of securing equipment financing. With some research and preparation, you may very well find exactly what you need to keep offering goods and services to your customers.
In this article, we’ll delve into some of the more common struggles small business owners encounter when seeking financing for equipment and upgrades. Then we’ll present solutions that pull from resources other than banks and other traditional lenders.
If you try to get a loan from a bank for equipment for your business, you can expect to face a range of hurdles. And this usually happens without anyone stepping back to view the full picture of your business.
Anyone who’s ever tried to get a loan is familiar with the irony: You need one because you don’t have enough money, but you must have a certain amount of money to get the loan. However, it’s not only about how much money you have for business owners, but also how long you’ve been bringing it in, where it comes from, and the details on how you plan to use it. Even personal credit history can come into play.
Let’s look at the major reasons entrepreneurs struggle to lock down financing for equipment from some small business lenders.
Lenders will likely inspect your personal and business credit. They’ll look at your payment history and current business credit score, the latter generally needing to be at least 680 (though being above 700 is far more ideal). A score that’s too low (“bad credit”), or not having enough credit history to predict future loan repayment, will make it very difficult to get a small business loan for the equipment you need.
If you carry too much debt or bring in too little money to effectively reduce debt, it limits your chances of a small business loan. This is especially true for younger businesses, which often spend a lot up front to get started and aren’t making a steady profit just yet.
The flipside to too much debt is too little income. Sometimes, business owners with less-than-ideal credit or revenue might back the loan with collateral. Collateral is something the business owns that may get sold off if the owner defaults on a loan. The collateral could be real estate, equipment, or other assets. If business collateral isn’t available, borrowers may resort to using personal collateral, putting their home or other necessities at risk.
In addition to wanting to know what you want money for, lenders may expect a detailed business plan. A solid business plan will outline your goals and how you plan to reach them. This includes explaining why each piece of equipment you’re trying to finance is vital to your business.
If a small business owner hasn’t used any of their own money to fund business needs, it might be a red flag to lenders that you’re too reliant on outside sources. Putting up your own money demonstrates passion and commitment, which are favorable traits in a borrower.
If business collateral isn’t available, borrowers may resort to using personal collateral, putting their home or other necessities at risk.
Applying for multiple business loans at once or already having several lined up is another potential red flag for lenders. Akin to not investing in the business yourself, it suggests a lack of planning and resources. If many of your loan applications have previously been rejected it will impact your ability to secure a new loan.
Doing your homework is a sign of commitment that goes beyond passion. If you haven’t gathered the proper documents, organized your application process, or researched the best kinds of loans for small businesses needing equipment, the bank may question whether you’re ready to manage a loan.
Running a business is hard, and simply wanting to do it does not mean a small business owner will do it well. Including work with mentors, financial advisors, and marketers in your business plan shows resourcefulness and an openness to collaboration.
Not all small business loans (sometimes called SBA loans if they involve the Small Business Administration) are right for all small business needs. In terms of financing equipment, it’s important to explore loans designed specifically for this kind of purchase. Going after an SBA loan that doesn’t suit your goals can waste everyone’s time and reveal that you haven’t done your research. Similarly, shopping around for the right lender shows you’re being responsible.
The younger a business, the more likely it is to carry debt and bring in minimal revenue. It also means less experience and less evidence of success. While being young is not “bad” on its own, combined with other business loan approval factors it could reduce your chances of securing a loan.
Every industry has its own definition of what qualifies as a small business. If you are too large, in the non-profit space, or professionally involved with, for example, gambling or religious activities, lenders won’t see you as an eligible small business.
RELATED: 20 Questions: Here’s How Equipment Financing Works
Did you know that big banks approve fewer than 20% of small business loan applications? That’s some serious competition, especially for one that is just getting started.
Fortunately, banks are not your only option. In recent years, increasing numbers of small businesses have started seeking alternative lending options online. Since they aren’t constricted with the same rigid parameters, online lenders have greater flexibility that may work quite well for small businesses in need of equipment.
There are some downsides to going through an online lender, though. These financers rarely foster relationships with clients. When you want to work with someone who truly understands your unique business, that is a problem. And even though traditional lending institutions tend to be rigid and inflexible, at least you can still walk into a branch and speak face-to-face with a loan officer.
At Team Financial Group, we strive to provide the best of both worlds. We look at the bigger picture of your small business and get creative with financing solutions to help you get the equipment you need. Further, we treat our clients as partners, working together to achieve your short-term and long-term goals.
For example, the seasonal nature of American Apples’ business gives them an unusual cash flow pattern. While that might be a problem for a bank, Team Financial Group created a customized financing agreement that works for their business model. And now the relationship that began with us financing apple boxes continues as we help American Apples with all their equipment financing needs.
RELATED: What Is an Equipment Financing Agreement (EFA)?
We look at the bigger picture of your small business and get creative with financing solutions to help you get the equipment you need. Further, we treat our clients as partners, working together to achieve your short-term and long-term goals.
Team Financial Group is proud to provide equipment financing to small businesses for more than two decades now. And we’re pleased to offer same-day, flexible, loans, leasing, and other financing agreements so businesses can get what they need to thrive.
We work within a range of industries and cash flow patterns, including construction, manufacturing, energy, technology, agriculture, transportation, office equipment, and more. We also partner with equipment vendors to help expand their financing options.
Educating borrowers on loan types and the business loan application process is a big part of what we do. For example, we can help you understand the difference between $1 buyouts versus FMV leases. And if you ever have any questions related to equipment financing, please don’t hesitate to reach out and ask.
If you’d like to learn more about us or are ready to apply, feel free to browse our site and get in touch. We’d love to help your small business find success through an amazing financing relationship!
Johnson, S. (2022, August 30). 8 factors that keep you from getting a small business loan. Business News Daily. Retrieved from https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/6242-small-business-loan-mistakes-to-avoid.html
Martins, A. (2022, August 30). How to get a bank loan for your small business. Business News Daily. Retrieved from https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/15750-get-business-loan-from-bank.html
Nicastro, S. (2022, June 30). Business loan requirements: 7 things you’ll need to qualify. Nerdwallet. Retrieved from https://www.nerdwallet.com/article/small-business/how-to-qualify-for-small-business-loans
Ward, S. (2020, October 11). Challenges of getting a small business loan. The Balance Small Business. Retrieved from https://www.thebalancesmb.com/small-business-loan-2947070
The content provided here is for informational purposes only. For financial advice, please contact our commercial financing experts.
Serving the greater West Michigan area, JDE Concrete offers concrete construction for residential, commercial, and agricultural customers. JDE also takes on specialty projects, like waterproofing, epoxy flooring, and decorative and stamped concrete.
Since being founded in 1997, JDE has expanded their equipment and services to handle any concrete project from start to finish. Being able to manage a project of any size requires a large range of equipment, which is why JDE has invested heavily in its fleet of concrete pumps, cranes, and conveyor trucks.
To better meet their clients’ needs, grow their fleet, and expand their market share, JDE needed a trusted financing partner. Team Financial Group proved to be the right lender for the job, and we’ve formed a strong and durable partnership that’s lasted twelve years (and counting).
Joel Eerdmans, owner and founder of JDE Concrete, started out by paving driveways. Since then, the operation has grown immensely, as JDE’s reputation for quality work and great service has spread. Strong growth requires capital, and Eerdmans says Team Financial has been essential in this regard by providing the support his company needed.
JDE first contacted Team Financial because they struggled to find a bank that would help finance their expansion. They were seeking a reliable financing partner, and Team Financial Group never wavered in their commitment to helping JDE grow.
“Initially, they provided funding and sound advice when we bought our Greenville operation, which really was key to the growth of JDE,” says Eerdmans. “Thereafter, Team was creative in helping us acquire our current building by providing a quick and easy sale leaseback to buy the property, which allowed me to not only move fast but also saved us significant closing costs and headaches too.”
As a commercial lender, Team Financial Group doesn’t have to answer to the stringent requirements that govern traditional lenders like banks. We can find a solution that will help our client grow, while making sure their cash flow stays healthy.
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While Eerdmans was initially looking for an independent lender with the flexibility and agility to meet JDE Concrete’s financing needs, he found that Team Financial provided even more. The business advice and guidance he received from Team Financial has been pivotal to navigating acquisitions.
“I most certainly view Team as if they are part of my unofficial Board of Directors,” comments Eerdmans. “They are experienced and sharp. More importantly, they care. I know they want me to win, even if their advice doesn’t benefit them.”
At Team Financial Group, our biggest goal is to see our clients succeed. Clients come to us from unique situations, which is why we prefer to customize a financing solution that will work best for each of them individually.
Just like with JDE Concrete, we can help you determine the best path forward for your business, even if it doesn’t help our own bottom line. Because we put our clients first, they know they can trust us to give them honest answers.
If you are looking for a lender with the flexibility and agility to finance your business growth, you’ve come to the right place. Team Financial Group has the expertise and experience to make sure you have the right equipment for the job.
We offer many different financing options, often with same-day approval, so you don’t waste a day waiting on the equipment you need. To get started, give us a call at 616-735-2393 or fill out our short online contact form. You’ll get the same commitment from us that we give to JDE Concrete because we want to see your business succeed too!
Company growth and sustainability require investment. Among the best investments are specific items a company owns, called assets, that generate revenue.
Selecting assets and determining the best way to pay for them can be complicated, however. Even if you know a certain piece of equipment or technology will greatly increase productivity, that doesn’t mean the money for that asset magically appears.
Fortunately, help is available in the form of people who understand your industry and how to finance assets typically needed for success within it. Whether you’re just starting out and trying to build your baseline assets or are ready to upgrade and keep pace with your growing business, it pays to work with an experienced financing partner.
This article will dig into what assets are and how they support revenue generation. We’ll also talk about the financing options that can make it easier for you to acquire the assets your company needs.
Before we get into acquiring and financing assets, let’s be clear on what exactly defines a company’s assets.
Rest assured that the concept of an income-producing asset doesn’t have to be complicated. If your head’s already swirling with concepts like dividend-paying stocks, your investment portfolio, certificates of deposit, taxable income, and interest rates, know that the idea of income-generating assets is as simple as a savings account. No need to even think about the stock market as we explore this subject!
The generally accepted definition of a business asset is something a company owns that has value and either generates revenue or can be turned into cash (liquidated). Assets usually fall into one of two categories:
The generally accepted definition of a business asset is something a company owns that has value and either generates revenue or can be turned into cash (liquidated).
Tangible assets are further broken out into another two categories:
So, for a typical company, assets can include:
Some verticals, such as real estate investment trusts, are fully focused on income-generating assets. Owning, operating, and sometimes financing properties makes real estate investing completely dependent on its assets.
All the items listed above play an important role for the company by contributing to revenue generation in some way. While machinery and products do this in very physical and literal ways, websites and logos do it by driving interest and establishing the brand.
Where assets add value to a business, liabilities are what the business owes, such as employee payroll, vendor bills, and rent. Ideally, the value of company assets is larger than liabilities, resulting in a greater net worth
Be aware that leased assets (as opposed to owned assets — more on that shortly) may be listed as both assets and liabilities.
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Any asset is going to cost money, though the costs impact businesses in different ways. When it comes to equipment assets, your business may have less financial wiggle room.
For example, inventory and intellectual property can be ongoing costs you plan for every month. Perhaps this is how you pay for retail items or marketing. These relatively predictable costs might even be adjustable under certain circumstances.
Equipment, however, is more likely to be large, one-off purchases. A restaurant is only going to buy a new stove once a decade, and a copy machine should last at least a few years. If equipment breaks unexpectedly, you may have minimal time to shop around and negotiate price points.
In addition, equipment is usually vital to a business. Manufacturers can’t produce without the right machines. Office staff can’t work without reliable computers. For those trying to get a new business off the ground, basic equipment can be a make-or-break factor.
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Manufacturers can’t produce without the right machines. Office staff can’t work without reliable computers. For those trying to get a new business off the ground, basic equipment can be a make-or-break factor.
The importance and potentially unpredictable costs of equipment might seem intimidating. It may be helpful to think of your equipment needs in terms of phases, focusing first on the things you absolutely need to operate and then planning out for items that will support your growth.
When it comes down to it, your essential pieces of equipment are income-generating assets. Without them, you can’t do the thing you exist to do, the thing that keeps your business profitable and sustainable. This makes the initial investment well worth it.
Extreme examples of the best income-producing assets are those that double as passive income, not requiring you to do anything other than maintain the equipment. Think of passive income as the money you make on something like a vending machine — you barely have to lift a finger to earn from it. Most income-generating assets, however, are only part of the plan.
When it comes down to it, your essential pieces of equipment are income–generating assets. Without them, you can’t do the thing you exist to do, the thing that keeps your business profitable and sustainable. This makes the initial investment well worth it.
For example, if you manufacture a specialty facial cream, each container needs a label that lists ingredients, warnings, and your brand. A computer and printer that easily organize, store, and print these labels will drive increased capacity and efficiency. Or, if you have a small mechanic shop, basic equipment like a hydraulic lift and air compressor are necessary for serving customers; you can’t run the shop without them.
Later, when you’ve established your company and are ready to expand, upgrades and new equipment will keep you moving toward your goals. With proper planning and financing options, this cycle of equipment purchasing and upgrading can be a routine piece of your budget.
RELATED: Business Health: How Equipment Financing Can Help Your Cash Flow
It doesn’t matter how essential a piece of equipment is to your business — if you can’t pay for it, you can’t access it. Further, you may not relish the idea of working with your usual bank for this highly specific form of financing.
Fortunately, financing business equipment becomes much more straightforward when you work with a lender who understands your industry. Team Financial Group supports customers and vendors who recognize the value of investing in equipment and want a lender who can customize a solution.
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Financing business equipment becomes much more straightforward when you work with a lender who understands your industry. Team Financial Group supports customers and vendors who recognize the value of investing in equipment and want a lender who can customize a solution.
As with many big-ticket items, equipment financing can help you buy or lease. What you choose depends on a range of factors.
Buy: Buying requires more cash or credit upfront, and means you’ll be fully responsible for the equipment you purchase. At the same time, the overall cost is usually less than a lease and the equipment gets a spot on the balance sheet.
Lease: Leasing tends to be more expensive, overall, than buying, and you may need to replace equipment when the lease is up. Still, this is a great option for new and small companies who can’t front much cash or credit and have fewer resources for maintenance.
No matter where you are in your business journey, Team Financial Group offers financing options for you. We’ve helped companies in a range of industries and for all kinds of asset acquisition.
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Team Financial Group delivers fast, flexible financing through common-sense lending. We are proud to offer customized options with more flexibility than the bank and we work hard to build and maintain strong relationships with our customers and vendors.
If you’re looking to finance equipment for your business, trust our team to guide you through the process. We partner with customers in manufacturing, energy, construction, technology, transportation, agriculture, and more to provide guidance as you change and grow.
If you want to get started today, call (616) 735-2393 or use the simple contact form on our website. We look forward to hearing from you!
Beaver, S. (2022, July 7). What is an asset? Types and examples in business accounting. Oracle NetSuite. Retrieved from https://www.netsuite.com/portal/resource/articles/accounting/asset.shtml
Buy assets and equipment. (n.d.). U.S. Small Business Administration. Retrieved from https://www.sba.gov/business-guide/manage-your-business/buy-assets-equipment
Liberto, D. (2020, Nov. 27). What is a business asset? Investopedia. Retrieved from https://www.investopedia.com/terms/b/business-asset.asp#:~:text=A%20business%20asset%20is%20an,items%2C%20such%20as%20intellectual%20property.
We’re starting to hit that sweet spot with electric vehicle (EV) charging stations – most of the early bugs have been worked out and the cost-benefit analysis is becoming very reasonable. Plus, you can still sneak in as an “early adopter” of EV charging, getting an edge over your competitors by providing an extra service to draw in customers and employees.
Major auto manufacturers are focused on an electric future, and consumers are on board, as evidenced by the fervent hype for Ford’s F-150 Lightning electric truck and its potential applications. Consumers are increasingly seeing the benefits of EVs, especially with gas prices skyrocketing across the country.
If you’re considering a fleet of electric vehicles for your business, or testing out your own EV, your first consideration is how to recharge the batteries. There are numerous benefits to installing an EV charging station, but what if you don’t have the cash on hand? Between the tax incentives and financing options, it’s easier than you think to buy electric vehicle charging stations.
One of the biggest concerns most people have about buying electric vehicles is not having enough charging stations. If an EV battery dies, getting it back on the road isn’t as simple as adding a couple gallons of fuel to a tank. An opportunity here is that there are already more than a dozen apps for finding EV charging stations and installing an EV charger puts your business on those maps!
The benefits to adding a charging station go beyond simply being a star on a map, of course. Here are some great reasons to add yourself to the list of EV charging station companies:
By positioning your business as a leader in EV adoption, you’ll rise above your competitors. Consumers are increasingly rewarding businesses that prioritize sustainable energy by spending their money where their values are.
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One of the great things about adding an EV charging station to your commercial property is that it’s typically not a complicated install. The footprint of a charging station is generally very modest (about 4 ft wide) and should be easily accommodated by an existing parking lot.
That said, some EV charging can put a heavy load on the power grid, so the planning stages are important for making sure the charging station has adequate power support. One way to potentially counteract that is going with a smart charging station that uses advanced technology and software.
The first step is to choose the type of charging station best suits your goals and budget.
The different charging station types scale quickly, with commensurate cost, so it’s important to analyze your projected usage to make the best decision.
Choosing the location for your EV charging station is an important step, because of the power considerations. You may need to contact your local utility company to bring in extra power to help handle the electrical needs of a charging station.
In this step, coordinating with contractors helps you plan the layout of the charging stations. A contractor can help you take into account any weather considerations for your station, protective barriers, accessibility accommodations, and plans for future expansion as needed. Some financial incentives require Wi-Fi-connected smart chargers, which allow you to monitor usage and reduce electrical draw during peak hours. With this plan, you can get realistic estimates of your total costs.
Collate the cost estimates with tax incentives, rebates, and grants. Even if you can pay cash for your EV charging station, financing might be a better option due to the predictable monthly payment, rather than making a big capital expenditure.
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Business approvals, local permits, and incentive applications all need to be finalized and approved, then the install can begin. Construction and deployment are the steps you’ve been waiting for!
If you’ve decided an EV charging station would be a great addition to your commercial property, one of your biggest concerns may be cost. One Level 2 charging station might sound affordable, but what if your analysis concluded that it would be better to install several Level 2 stations? Costs can rise considerably, depending on your scenario.
You don’t need to make your budget fit your desired upgrades. Instead, you can make EV chargers fit your budget with affordable financing. Traditional lenders don’t usually have the flexibility or discernment to realize the benefits of financing commercial equipment like EV chargers. Independent lenders like Team Financial Group don’t have to adhere to bank rules, and can work with you to find an affordable, flexible solution.
Team Financial goes above and beyond for our clients. We want to hear all about your business so that we have a full understanding of your unique cash flow situation. That enables us to find solutions to help you grow. Plus, we may be able to offer you 0% down financing and a same-day approval.
Our team has experience with technology leasing, and a huge range of equipment financing so that no matter what kinds of upgrades your business needs the most, we can help. We’ve partnered with Michigan Saves to help fellow Michiganders take advantage of the benefits of renewable energy. (If you’re not located in Michigan, we can still help you achieve your renewable energy goals!)
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The simple fact of the matter is that electric vehicles are going to become increasingly mainstream in the coming years. Some businesses will be poised to reap the benefits of providing EV charging to their customers and employees – why not yours?
If you have more questions about financing EV charging equipment, or you’d like to hear how Michigan Saves can benefit your business, let us know! You can call our office at 616-735-2393 or fill out our online contact form. We’d love to help you position yourself as a leader in the EV charging space.
We’ve been in a low interest rate market for a long time, which means borrowing money has been cheap. As that environment changes, any variable rate debt your business holds can get more and more expensive. However, with high inflation in the mix, holding cash is also a losing proposition.
For growing businesses, or organizations that need to replace outdated equipment, this can present a challenging scenario. Should you try to make the purchase now, while borrowing is cheaper, even though your current equipment hasn’t outlived its lifespan yet?
Increasing volatility in the economy is stressful for everyone, but a deeper understanding of the situation can be helpful for both your short- and long-term decision-making.
Historically, the Federal Reserve (“the Fed”) was formed in the wake of several financial panics and tasked with stabilizing the economy through control of the monetary system. The main tools they use to do that are 1) creating money and 2) setting the interest rates.
During the Great Recession, stress in the financial markets spurred the Fed to take a “dovish” stance—to lower interest rates—which made money cheaper to borrow. The Feds’ goal was to help spur investment in the economy and had kept rates low since then.
However, in recent years, the global pandemic caused the Fed to inject more money into the economy to stabilize the market against shutdowns. The drastic increase in the money supply, combined with pandemic-related supply chain issues and consumer demand for goods, has led to a lot of money and not much to spend it on. This can contribute to the devaluing of the dollar and, along with increasing prices for consumer goods, is experienced as inflation. A little inflation (a rate of around 2%) is one sign of a healthy economy, but rates higher than that are bad news.
Additional contributing factors to the rising prices come from international conflict and trade sanctions, which cause a reduced supply of internationally traded goods, like gasoline and other energy sources.
Due to the current inflation, the Fed is taking a “hawkish” stance and raising interest rates to try and curb it. When high inflation signals that the economy is growing too fast, the Federal Reserve can raise interest rates to discourage spending and slow down the economy.
The Fed must tread carefully here because, even though inflation is bad for consumers, raising interest rates too quickly could cause an economic downturn. Therefore, the current plan is small incremental increases in the interest rate, over the next year or so.
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For businesses, high inflation causes all internal costs to rise. From sourcing goods to paying competitive wages, you will probably have to spend more if you want to stay in business. For example, the cost of shipping containers overseas has increased more than ten-fold for some organizations!
And now you’ve got an interest rate rise to contend with. Is there any way to turn this financial instability into a tactical advantage?
Organizational decisions in a volatile market are always challenging. By proactively taking steps to mitigate financial instability, you position your company to withstand the uncertainties of the future.
If you’ve got projects that need financing, you might be tempted to put them on hold. Before you do that, talk to a professional – financing may be more affordable than you think!
If you’ve been considering large purchases, like an investment in new equipment, speaking to someone in the financing industry can help you make better decisions to protect your business from the challenges of rising interest rates.
At Team Financial Group, we take the time to get to know you and your unique business needs. We understand how higher interest rates can create a more complex business environment. Partnering with a lender who truly cares about seeing your business succeed makes a world of difference.
Don’t let interest rates stop you from achieving your business goals. Team Financial can help you get the equipment you need, with terms that are affordable for your bottom line.
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If you have questions or concerns about rising interest rates, give us a call. The experts at Team Financial Group can help you find a solution to your financing needs, even in challenging fiscal environments.
For more information, fill out our online contact form or call our office at 616-735-2393. Tell us about yourself and see what Team Financial can do for you today!
There are numerous benefits to being a Michigander (where else can you experience all four seasons in one day?!), but here’s one you may not know much about: the Michigan Saves program.
MI Saves is a green bank formed in 2009 with the intent of making clean energy accessible to everyone, regardless of their economic situation. This program is available for both residential and commercial lending and has financial benefits that you might want to capitalize on. Even better, you don’t need cash in hand to save money and take advantage of clean energy initiatives for your business.
With MI Saves financing, you can start implementing cost-saving energy improvements right now. Whether you want to go green with solar power, or simply install energy-efficient systems like an ENERGY STAR certified water heater or new LED lighting, financing can help you get there faster.
There’s never been a better time to start making energy upgrades to your business. “Clean energy” is no longer just a buzzword, it’s an inevitability. Between increasing utility costs, increasing regulation of carbon footprints, and the nation’s largest companies getting on board, green energy is clearly here to stay – and this is actually great news for your business.
You see significant utility cost savings when you invest in energy improvements for your commercial building. Investments like upgrading to ENERGY STAR appliances, improving insulation, replacing toilets and faucets with low-flow equipment all reduce utility bills, and they’re all eligible for MI Saves financing.
To substantially reduce CO2 emissions, U.S. and local environmental laws are starting to target carbon footprints. Since noncompliance could ultimately result in heavy fines, it’s smart to be proactive and make compliance a priority now.
Automotive manufacturers are shifting toward an all-electric future. For instance, GM has committed to 30 new electric vehicle (EV) options by 2025, and they’ve announced they’ll go all-electric by 2035. And other automotive leaders are making similar commitments.
Do your employees or customers drive electric vehicles yet? Would installing EV charging stations attract more talent? More customers? If cost is holding you back from making EV-friendly improvements, financing can make clean energy equipment shockingly affordable.
Technological advances move at a fast pace, and the Internet of Things (IoT) has spawned a whole set of smart devices to help make sure that your commercial building is only using energy when people need it.
Occupancy sensors and smart thermostats have proven their value. You don’t need to wonder if anyone left the lights on, you could easily use your phone to check and turn them off. In turn, this helps you cut down your utility bill, and could help you capitalize on MI Saves benefits.
Any commercial property user or owner can use MI Saves financing partners to take advantage of the program. To help you with this, Michigan Saves has created a network of authorized contractors so you can be sure the job is done well.
If your favorite contractor isn’t already part of the network, don’t worry – they can easily apply to join. The MI Saves website has simple instructions for adding contractors to their network. And by asking them to do this, you might even help your contractor bring in additional business, which is something they’ll likely appreciate.
The list of improvements eligible for the Michigan Saves commercial financing program is huge! The full list can be found here, but even if the MI Saves program doesn’t fit your energy upgrade project list, Team Financial Group will still gladly work to find a solution that fits your needs and your budget:
*According to the Global Wind Atlas, Michigan is one of the windiest states (ranking 3rd behind Alaska and Wyoming). While windstorms pose a vulnerability to power outages, harnessing the power of the wind can keep your electricity on. That’s a win for both your business and clean energy!
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The Michigan Saves green bank is designed to provide insurance for independent lenders. Because of this, Team Financial Group can offer even better rates for your clean energy equipment upgrades.
Without the Michigan Saves program, it can be difficult to get clean energy projects financed through a traditional lender. “Our purpose is to serve gaps in the marketplace,” explains Mary Templeton, CEO of Michigan Saves. Templeton and her team want to make clean energy accessible and affordable, so that anyone can take advantage of these cost-saving initiatives.
If you’re ready to begin your clean energy project, but are struggling to find the resources, it’s time to see how Team Financial Group can help. We are a Michigan Saves-authorized lender, and we also have extensive experience with a wide range of equipment financing and leasing solutions.
We’ll get to know you and your business so we can tailor your financing solution to best fit your cash flow and budget. If Michigan Saves is not the right best option for your clean energy project, we’ll let you know. Team Financial Group always wants to help find the right financing solution for you, even if Michigan Saves isn’t the best fit.
And it’s entirely possible we may be able to find you an even better solution. With our different financing options, you may see that our $1 Buyout Lease is a better deal for your organization.
If you want fast, flexible financing options for clean energy equipment, Team Financial Group is a wise choice. We are often able to give same-day approvals for lending and strive to make the process simple for you. Equipment financing can be a complicated process, but our vast experience enables us to break things down for you.
Our team will work with you to make sure you have a good understanding of what your options are, and the best way for your business to reap the benefits of energy-efficient upgrades.
RELATED: 20 Questions: Here’s How Equipment Financing Works
If you’d like to know more about how to take advantage of the Michigan Saves program, or if you’ve already got a project in mind and would like to get started with financing, we’re here for you.
You can either fill out our online contact form or give us a call at 616-735-2393. We’d love to hear more about your clean energy project and see how we can help make your project a reality.
Anuradha, V. (2019, December 27). Windiest states in America. Stacker. https://stacker.com/stories/3809/windiest-states-america
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