If you’re a regular around these parts you’ll have seen our flex loans cropping up quite a bit. Put simply, they give small businesses fast and flexible access to funds up to £100,000. We’re excited to see them put to work for a number of entrepreneurs around the country.
So what are they, exactly? Recently we took you through how flex loans work and everything from how much you can borrow to which businesses are eligible here. We like to think of them as working capital on demand. A cash flow buffer that you can access all at once or in smaller amounts over time.
Here are the main benefits of a flex loan:
Withdraw your whole flex loan at once or request smaller amounts as needed
Request and receive funds on the same day
Select the repayment schedule that suits you
Withdraw and repay your flex loan as many times as you like
Monthly fee starting at 1.4% per 30 days charged only on funds you use
No setup fee, no charge for early repayment
If you’re thinking that sounds like a handy weapon to have in your cash flow arsenal but aren’t sure how you’d use it then read on. We’ll take you through a few ways flex loans make a useful difference to all kinds of businesses.
HOW DO I USE A FLEX LOAN?
When you withdraw from your flex loan, it’s up to you to decide what period of time you'd like to pay it back over. The main thing to remember is that you only pay for the funds you use, and your available balance reloads with every repayment. That means you can withdraw multiple times.
If you wanted, you could take out the whole limit at once and pay it all back in one go. But, a flex loan can really prove its use when you use it in smaller increments. For example, you could withdraw £35k from a £100k limit to pay for a higher staff bill if you’re ramping up for your busy season. The following week you might want to order new materials and see that you’ll get a better discount the more you order. A flex loan gives you instant access to more cash so that you can make the most of the discount. And then you can choose a repayment schedule that works for you.
WHAT PROBLEMS DOES A FLEX LOAN SOLVE?
You’ve heard it before but that doesn’t stop it being true. Cash is king, and cash flow is essential to every business, whatever they do. A flex loan helps you bridge the gaps in cash flow that get in the way of progress. That could be anything from a delayed payment from your customers, a high value order you need to place to manage demand or managing bills from your office space.
All kinds of B2B and B2C businesses in a range of industries can benefit from a flex loan. They’re a great tool to manage regular cash flow needs, from the day-to-day, to unexpected one-off charges. We’ve seen them help businesses from ad agencies to manufacturers.
Here are a few common ways our customers are using their flex loans:
Bridging the cash gap while waiting for invoices to be paid – we know the frustrations so many businesses have when it comes to long payment terms. Sometimes when you invoice for a project your team completed you end up waiting 60, 90 or even 120 days. A flex loan offers you access to funds when you need them so you can stay on top of your staff wage bill, software subscriptions, office rent and more. At a time when customer payment terms are getting longer and suppliers are shortening theirs, a cash buffer comes in handy.
Launching new products – when business is going well and you have growth plans on your mind, the last thing you need is cash flow slowing you down. If you want to launch a new product that will take your business to the next level and help you maintain your customers for longer, you need funding. Researching your proposition and testing out new goods or services doesn’t happen for free. Having a flexible funding solution allows you to make these innovations and target growth.
Boosting marketing spend – another way to focus on growing your business is by increasing the cash you pour into your marketing strategy. Have you been wanting to hire an SEO whizz to list a bit higher on Google? Or are you ready to ramp up your digital advertising spend to tap into new customers? If they’re a tool you’ve been considering to reach that next level of growth then a flex loan can put that budget within reach, as and when you need to invest.
Covering day-to-day costs like paying staff and suppliers – have peace of mind over your working capital. A flex loan can be your rainy day fund, for those times when cash flow is too tight to cover every element of your business.
Moving to bigger premises or upgrading equipment – if you’re on a growth streak and are looking for bigger, better office space or warehouse then flexing into your facility can help you seal the deal. Those one-off costs won’t put a spanner in your regular cash flow planning.
Winning new business – buy yourself your next opportunity with the right funding. If you’re trying to woo a new client and need to bring on a freelancer to help with your pitch or offering then a flex loan could be the perfect funding match.
FUNDS THAT FLEX TO YOUR NEEDS
A flex loan is a flexible way to get an instant cash injection for your business. It’s perfect for all kinds of businesses that need funds to cover a variety of costs. Emergencies like weather damage or frustrations like supply chain hold ups are less stressful if you can access cash as soon as you need it. Don’t let short-term funding issues get in the way of your long-term plans.
Most businesses understand the basic concept of cash flow. It is simple after all. Cash comes into a business from your clients, and cash goes out when you pay your expenses and suppliers. But is it really that easy?
We simply can’t know or control everything that happens in life. Over the past 18 months we’ve all had lessons in dealing with unexpected and challenging events. And yet, many of the UK’s small businesses are still powering on, focusing on their resilience and recovery.