ForwardLine Small Business Loans Review

About ForwardLine


Ready to get back to growing your business? Upon approval from ForwardLine, you can receive cash in your business bank account in 24 hours. Get started by completing a no-obligation, hassle-free application today.

For 14 years, ForwardLine has helped over 15,000 small businesses grow by providing access to affordable working capital. ForwardLine makes borrowing convenient and easy with a simple application, instant credit decision, and next day funding. ForwardLine offers competitive rates, so that you can feel confident that you are getting the best pricing in the market.

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What is ForwardLine?

ForwardLine is an online lender based in Woodland Hills, Calif., serving small businesses. Since starting in 2003, ForwardLine has loaned $450 million to business owners across the country. ForwardLine uses a direct sales model rather than going through brokers, allowing the lender to offer a low-rate guarantee.

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Lender highlights

Decisions made instantly. ForwardLine aims to approve loan applications instantly and provide funding within one business day. If you’re hurting for cash, you’ll know right away if you can count on ForwardLine or if you’re not approved and should move along. Many online lenders advertise same-day approval.

Loan rate guarantee available. ForwardLine guarantees the lowest competitive rates for qualifying borrowers. To qualify, you must be approved for a term loan and you must present a written loan offer from another lender. The competing offer must be for the same amount of financing, same term and require the same repayment schedule as your ForwardLine offer. If you provide this information, ForwardLine may give you a loan with a lower total cost of capital than the competing offer. Or, ForwardLine may give you a $100 gift card if the lender cannot beat the competing offer.

Focused product offering. While some online lenders offer multiple financing options, from equipment financing to merchant cash advances, ForwardLine focuses on term loans for small business owners.

What ForwardLine offers?

ForwardLine offers term loans for businesses that need an infusion of capital.

ForwardLine: At a glance
Loan product Loan amount Loan term APR range/ factor rate Fees Time to funding
Short- term loan Up to $500,000 6 to 18 months Not provided by the lender Not provided by the lender As soon as 24 hours
Medium-term loan Up to $500,000 1 to 5 years Not provided by the lender Not provided by the lender As soon as 24 hours


There is no fee to complete the application, and your FICO score won’t be affected if you apply.

Eligibility requirements

Loan product Revenue Min. business credit score or personal credit score Time in business
Short-term loan More than $100,000 in annual sales Not provided 1 year
Medium-term loan More than $75,000 in annual sales High personal FICO score 3 years

Additional eligibility factors

To qualify for a medium-term loan, a business must also meet ForwardLine’s profitability requirement.

Businesses that are not eligible for ForwardLine loans:

ForwardLine does not issue loans to businesses or borrowers based in Vermont, the only state that is excluded from the lender’s services.

How to apply for ForwardLine financing

You could fill out an online form or apply for financing over the phone. ForwardLine collects personal information, such as your social security number and date of birth, as well as your business’ financial information.

Documents needed to apply:

  • Tax identification number
  • Bank account information
  • Three months of business bank account statements
  • Lowest of last three months’ credit card statements
  • Estimated average of last three months’ credit card receipts
  • Estimated annual revenue


Pros Cons
  Not reliant on credit score   Rates not available online
  Offers competitive rate guarantee   Limited product offering
  Large amount of funding available   High, unspecified FICO score required for medium-term loan

Who is the best fit?

ForwardLine’s medium-term loan is best suited for established, profitable businesses. Underwriting requirements for its medium-term loan include a high personal FICO score, which would exclude any business owners with troublesome credit. ForwardLine’s short-term loan is also best for businesses with some experience, and the one-year requirement would prevent startups from qualifying. The short-term loan would be ideal for business owners who are somewhat established and need to iron out their cash flow.

Fine print

Automated repayments. ForwardLine’s short-term loan requires daily or weekly repayments made through Automated Clearing House. A daily repayment schedule is not uncommon when borrowing from an online lender.

Funding source depends on amount. The funding amount you would be approved for would depend on your sales volume, type of business and time in business. The maximum amount you would be eligible for would be double your average monthly sales. For funding amounts higher than $150,000, loans are issued by one of ForwardLine’s third-party partners.

Loan details are hard to find. Like many online lenders, ForwardLine does not list its rates and fees on its website. After submitting your application, ForwardLine’s calculating program would determine your rate and term based on the amount of funding you’ve requested and the overall condition of your business, according to a ForwardLine representative. The lack of readily available information could make it hard to comparison shop for a small business loan.

The bottom line: How ForwardLine stacks up

ForwardLine offers a sizeable amount of funding to cover immediate- and long-term business needs. Rates and fees are difficult to find online, as is the case with similar online lenders. However, ForwardLine’s website is easy to navigate and the loan products are well described. The lender lists its leadership team and board members online as well. ForwardLine has a competitive edge with its rate guarantee. Even if ForwardLine can’t beat the rate of a competing lender, you could earn a $100 gift card. The other aspects of ForwardLine – automated repayments, simple application and quick funding – are comparable to most online lenders.

If you’re in search of a term loan to pay for business expenses, you may consider ForwardLine to accommodate your needs. Before choosing a lender, it’s best to gather as many details as possible to inform your decision.

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