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Established in 1944, the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) is a crown corporation that’s owned by the federal government. They’re the only Canadian bank with Beneficial Corporation (B Corp) certification (reserved for companies that benefit society) and they specialize in providing different business financing services, including but not limited to:
- Working Capital
- Equipment Purchase
- Commercial Real Estate
- Business Acquisitions & Transfers
- Purchases Orders
- Technology & Tech Company Financing
BDC Small Business Loan Features
As mentioned, a BDC Small Business loan lets you borrow up to $100,000 over a maximum period of 5 years. It’s designed to help businesses finance a variety of expenses such as new equipment, inventory, supplier costs, employee salaries, and marketing campaigns. When you choose a BDC small business loan, you can take advantage of:
- Payment Flexibility – You may postpone your principal payments for up to 6 months and won’t need to offer any personal assets as collateral. You’ll only have to pay the interest portion of your BDC Small Business Loan for the first 6 months. Starting on the 7th month, you’ll repay your full loan in 60 monthly payments.
- Fast Funding – Financing is quick, and the entire application can be completed online. Loan approval times vary based on factors like your business’s overall financial health.
- Affordable – Rates are affordable and there are zero application fees or prepayment penalties. BDC uses this formula to calculate their Small Business loan interest rates:
- Current Floating Base Rate + Variance Based On Personal & Business Info
What Solutions Does BDC Offer?
As a client of BDC, you can apply for a business loan whether you’re trying to finance a startup or an established company. You’re also allowed to postpone your principal loan payments for 6 – 36 months, if necessary. BDC currently offers the following loan types:
Business Purchase or Transfer Financing
Commercial Real Estate
Up to 100% financing
25 years max.
Up to 125% financing
12 years max.
Up to 90% financing
18 months max.
Small Business Loan
Up to $100,000
Startup Financing (all businesses must be operating for a minimum of 12 months)
Up to $125,000
Up to 100% financing
4 years max.
Technology Company Financing
Who’s Eligible For The BDC Small Business Loan?
At BDC, business financing requirements vary from product to product. For instance, here’s what you’ll need in order to qualify for a BDC Small Business Loan:
- Be past the age of majority in your province/territory (at least 18 or 19+)
- Have a good credit history (personal and business)
- Have a Canada-based business that’s been in operation for a minimum of 24 months and is generating a steady revenue
How Do You Apply For A BDC Business Loan?
Applying for BDC business financing is relatively simple. Just follow these instructions:
- Step 1. Go to the BDC website – Although an account isn’t necessary to apply, you can create one with Client Space; a secure platform for financing services.
- Step 2. Pick your loan and click “Apply” – The process varies between products but you’ll normally have to start by entering the amount you want to borrow.
- Step 3. Enter Information About Your Business – Answer some questions about your business to confirm its eligibility for financing, then describe the project you’d like to fund in 100 characters or less.
- Step 4. Complete Your Account – Lastly, enter your contact information, create a BDC account using your personal details (name, age, address, etc.) and submit your application.
Documents Required For A BDC Business Loan
When you apply for a BDC loan, make sure to have these documents ready:
- Your personal and business bank account information (as the business owner)
- A void cheque from your business bank account
- Your year-end financial statements OR income tax returns from the last 2 years
You must also obtain the consent of any business partners you have. Otherwise, if your business qualifies, you can accept your loan offer and sign the confirmation documents.
Cost Of A BDC Loan
While BDC is a government-owned bank, their loan prices work almost the same as any other lender, meaning the cost of your BDC business loan could vary according to your:
- Interest Rate – The stronger your finances and credit are in general, the more chance your business will have of qualifying for a lower interest rate.
- Loan Term – The term you get can also affect the total amount of interest you pay on your loan. The longer your term, the more interest you’ll pay over the life of your loan.
- Fees – BDC charges standard administration fees and a yearly loan management fee of $150. You’ll have to pay a $150 transaction fee for any amendments too.
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Tips On Qualifying For A Low-Interest BDC Loan
No matter what type of business financing you choose, getting a low-interest rate is one of the primary ways to make it more affordable. BDC decides your rate by determining the creditworthiness of your business and any of its owners. Basically, you must prove that your business loan will be paid off in full and on schedule, which you can do by:
- Increasing Company Revenue – When you apply for a loan, one of the most important elements is your business income. BDC will evaluate your business’s profit records, financial statements and unpaid debts to evaluate your creditworthiness. The better all those factors look, the easier it should be to qualify for a low-interest rate.
- Improving Your Credit – BDC will also use your personal and business credit scores to determine your company’s risk of defaulting on its loan payments. If you and your business have good credit and clean payment histories, the interest rates will be lower (and vice versa). This is particularly beneficial for small loans.
- Adding Collateral – Offering an asset is another way to earn a low interest rate, especially if you or your business don’t have great credit. Essentially, by giving BDC something to sell if you default, you’re reducing risk for them. Viable assets include buildings, vehicles and equipment that haven’t depreciated yet.
Why Choose A BDC Loan?
Here are some of the main reasons to apply for your business financing through BDC:
- Flexible Options – BDC offers a variety of adjustable and affordable business loans that are specially designed for small and medium enterprises.
- Free Applications & Prepayments – BDC doesn’t charge any application fees or penalties for early or lump-sum payments.
- Option to Postpone – Certain types of BDC financing come with grace periods of 6 to 36 months, during which you’ll only have to pay the interest on your loan.
- Advisory Services – If you need business advice, BDC has more than 500 professional consultants across Canada and over 75 years of experience.
Frequently Asked Questions
What interest rate can I get with a BDC loan?
What fees does BDC charge?
What can I use a BDC loan for?
- Pay your landlords, employees, suppliers and other expenses
- Buy inventory, invest in marketing, hire consultants and upgrade your website
- Buy equipment and technology using a supplemental cash flow
Looking For An Affordable Business Loan?
Then BDC could be the perfect bank for you. Not only are they owned and regulated by the federal government, BDC offers a range of flexible and affordable loan options for small and medium-sized businesses alike. Don’t hesitate to call the BDC customer service department at 1-877-232-2269 or visit their website today for more information