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Small Business Loans

Funding Circle Business Loans Review

Loan marketplace

  • Get an SBA loan backed by the Small Business Administration
  • Also offers business term loans and lines of credit

Funding Circle is an international small business lender that launched in 2010. It’s based out of the U.K., where it’s listed on the London Stock Exchange. It expanded to the U.S. in 2013. In that time, Funding Circle claims to have doled out more than $4.5 billion 45,000-plus small businesses. 

If you’ve struggled in the past to get funding for your small business, consider applying with Funding Circle. It uses a unique tech-driven model to assess and approve applicants along a broader range of factors. Common limitations still apply, such as credit score and time-in-business requirements. 

Keep reading to find out more about Funding Circle’s business loan options. 

About Funding Circle small business loans

Funding Circle doesn’t issue your funds. It helps provide small business funding by matching them with other partner lenders. It may dictate the terms and requirements, but your terms could vary depending on which lender you match with. For example, you may need to join a credit union to get your Funding Circle loan in some cases. 

Because Funding Circle’s rates and terms can vary between its partners, which often tweak their funding packages, Funding Circle doesn’t provide much public-facing information for borrowers to make a strong decision about whether the company is worth contacting. 

The company prefers that you contact it for more specific details on how much your funding options will cost. You’ll know the details before you sign on the dotted line, but it can put you in a high-pressure sales situation and makes comparing your options difficult. 

Funding Circle offers three main types of loans:

  • Small Business Administration (SBA) loan
  • Business term loan
  • Business line of credit 

Funding Circle SBA loan

Some of Funding Circle’s partner lenders offer SBA loans. Since these loans are backed by the U.S. government, the process of qualifying and the loan options available tend to be uniform. According to Funding Circle, it works with SBA Preferred lenders

These lenders have more leeway in getting SBA approval for loans, meaning they may be able to process your application in about two weeks, on average, compared to the more typical one- to two-month underwriting timelines for other SBA loans. 

Loan amounts$30,000 – $500,000
Rates (APR)Prime rate plus 2.75% – 4.75%
Repayment termsUp to 10 years
FeesSBA Guaranty fee: 0 – 0.55% of guaranteed amount

Broker fee (Varies by lender)

Closing costs (Vary by lender) 
Minimum credit score650
Funding speed2 months
Unique featuresMay require a 10% to 20% down payment 

May require collateral for loans over $25,000
Eligibility requirementsTime in business: 2+ years

Age: 21+

Citizenship: At least one owner must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident

Credit history: No bankruptcies or foreclosures within the past 3 years. No recent settlements or charge-offs 

Funding Circle term loan

Funding Circle’s hallmark product is its business term loan, best used for dedicated projects such as large inventory purchases, expanding to offer new products and services, or buying equipment. 

It offers a solid range of funding amounts for most small businesses, as well as flexible term options. But the requirements for approval may be challenging for many small business owners, especially those who haven’t yet established themselves. 

Loan amounts$25,000 – $500,000
Rates (APR)Not disclosed
Repayment terms6 months – 84 months
FeesOrigination fee (amount not disclosed)

Late fee
Minimum credit score660
Funding speedAt least 2 days
Unique featuresBiweekly or monthly payments
Eligibility requirementsTime in business: 2+ years

Credit history: No bankruptcies within the past 7 years

Business type: Any except restricted businesses, such as nonprofits and gambling operations

Funding Circle line of credit

As with Funding Circle’s other products, Funding Circle’s small business line of credit may vary depending on which funding source it matches you with. 

You might be required to take out a draw against your full credit limit when you open the line of credit, for example, or you might be able to borrow as needed. In some cases, you might repay each draw might be separately, like a series of smaller loans.

Loan amountsUp to $250,000
Rates (APR)Not disclosed
Repayment terms12 – 18 months
FeesDraw fee (amount not disclosed)

Late fee
Minimum credit scoreNot specified, but good credit is required
Funding speedNot disclosed
Unique featuresSecured options available

Weekly or monthly payments

How do Funding Circle small business loans work?

Funding Circle’s business loans (including SBA loans) are disbursed in one lump sum. You can use these funds for the purpose stated on your application and repay them with regular payments. 

Business lines of credit offer a more flexible way to access funds without applying for a new loan. But the rates tend to be higher, the individual lines of credit can vary more, and the amount you can borrow may be smaller. 

Small business loans are often better for dedicated infrequent purchases, such as investing in your business. Lines of credit are better for occasional funding needs, especially when you need the funds fast and are willing to pay more for the peace of mind of knowing it’s available. 

Is Funding Circle a reputable lender?

What a company says and what its actual customers experience can differ, so it’s important to look at reviews too. Reviews can vary among platforms as well, which is why we consulted three of the most popular review websites.

SourceCustomer rating (out of 5)Number of reviews
Better Business Bureau (BBB)1.3813
Collected on February 5, 2024.

Customer reviews on Trustpilot are positive, and the site has far more reviews than the other two. 

A common complaint on Google and BBB mentions a large number of lending solicitations from other companies through phone calls, mail, and email. Some customers also mentioned that reaching customer service even for basic inquiries, such as changing their address, was difficult.

See how Funding Circle stacks up against our other best small business loans.

Does Funding Circle have a customer service team?

If you need help, Funding Circle offers three ways to get in touch:

  • Email: [email protected]
  • Phone number: 855-385-5356
  • Mailing address: 707 17th Street, Suite 2200, Denver, CO, USA 80202

The company doesn’t specify its hours of operation for customer support, and support via email is only available for current customers. This lack of information gives credence to customers’ most common complaints about poor customer service from Funding Circle. 

How to apply for a Funding Circle small business loan

Applying for funding with Funding Circle is simple.

If you’re interested in an SBA loan, these funding options may come with additional requirements and documents needed. All financing offered through Funding Circle follows the same general steps:

  1. Submit an initial online application: Funding Circle has a quick six-minute online application asking for basic details, such as information about the business owners and how much funding you need. The company will use a soft credit pull to check your credit.
  2. Work with a funding manager: According to Funding Circle, an account manager will contact you within one hour to request additional information and documents, which may include business tax returns, bank statements, and personal tax returns. 
  3. Get a decision: Your funding manager will submit your full loan application for consideration, and the company will issue a loan decision within at least one business day. 
  4. Wait for loan disbursement: You’ll get a chance to review the loan contract before you sign. If you agree to the rates and terms, sometime by the next business day, Funding Circle will deposit the loan amount into your bank account, minus the origination fee. 

What if I’m denied a small business loan from Funding Circle?

If you’re not approved for a small business loan through Funding Circle, the company will send a letter explaining why. This can give you clues about how to improve your application in the future, whether you apply again with Funding Circle or another lender. 

Here are a few options if you’re denied funding:

  • Apply with another lender
  • Appeal the decision, if possible
  • Consider another funding product, such as a non-SBA loan
  • Wait to apply again after you’ve improved your creditworthiness

Funding Circle FAQ

What kind of small business loans does Funding Circle offer?

Funding Circle offers a variety of small business loans to meet different business needs. These include term loans, which provide a lump sum upfront on a fixed repayment schedule, and lines of credit, offering flexible access to funds as needed. 

These loans can cater to various purposes, such as expanding your business, purchasing inventory, or covering operational costs, and are tailored to suit businesses at different stages of growth.

Does applying with Funding Circle hurt my credit?

Applying for a loan with Funding Circle involves a soft credit inquiry to provide a loan quote, which does not affect your credit score. However, once you proceed with the loan application after accepting a quote, it will perform a hard credit inquiry, which may lower your credit score. 

Consider this when applying for multiple loans from different lenders.

What can Funding Circle small business loans be used for?

Funding Circle small business loans offer flexibility in terms of usage. Borrowers can use these funds for a range of business-related purposes, such as expanding operations, hiring new staff, buying equipment, refinancing other debts, or managing cash flow. 

Funding Circle restricts using these funds for nonbusiness activities or illegal purposes. Before applying, check with Funding Circle for any specific limitations or guidelines related to the use of loan funds.

How long does it take to receive funds from Funding Circle?

The time to get funds from Funding Circle after a loan approval can vary. Typically, once a loan is approved, the funds are disbursed within one business day. This timeline can depend on several factors, including the speed of completing required documentation and the specifics of your loan agreement. 

Funding Circle aims to streamline the process to ensure quick access to funds, which is crucial for small businesses needing timely financial support.