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Small businesses are the literal backbone of the American economy. Even though there are lots of factors that affect Wall Street such as oil prices and foreign markets, small businesses depend on Main Street instead of Wall Street to make their money. When it comes time to grow your small business, whether you're looking for funds to expand facilities, add or upgrade equipment or to buy extra inventory for seasonal sales, getting a short term loan can make the impossible possible.<br> <br> However, there are different types of loans you can get from personal loans to merchant loans to full-fledged bank loans. Knowing the difference between these types of loans can make a real difference to your bottom line.<br> <br> First, taking out personal loans instead of merchant loans for a business situation can be a real problem. First, a personal loan is based off of your personal finances instead of the finances of the business. Another drawback is the fact that you are personally liable to pay off the loan instead of the obtaining business credit - being responsible. This means if the loan fails to get repaid for whatever reason, the bank can go after whatever collateral that's been placed against the loan. This could be your private cars, your personal bank accounts or even your home. That can spell disaster for your family.<br> <br> Bank loans usually aren't well suited for a short term loan situation while others are. That's because bank loans are generally for far more money than you need and have a payoff based on years instead of weeks or months. Even though you may qualify for a bank loan, closing one can take longer than your window of opportunity which means that having a loan you can't use is as useless as not being able to get a loan at all. Regardless of whether you take out the bank loan as a personal loan or as a business loan, they're usually geared as more of a long term investment in your business instead of a short term tool to be used for leverage.<br> <br> A merchant loan on the other hand is designed specifically for just such a purpose. Merchant loans are the responsibility of the business to pay back, especially if you've incorporated. This prevents personal property or credit from being affected by a loan to the business entity. Also, merchant loans are for short term situations such as increasing inventory for seasonal business and other short term needs. The best part about third party merchant loans is the fact that the payback can come off of credit card receipts instead of having to be paid back at a specific time and in a specific way. This adds a level of flexibility you can't get with any other kind of loan.<br> <br> Protect your personal assets and give your business the flexibility it needs by using merchant loans for short term needs. Not only will you have the funds you need when you need them but flexible payback means you've got them for as long, or as short, as you need them as well.
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