LenCred Small Business Loans Review


What is LenCred?

Founded in 2001, LenCred pairs businesses with lenders offering business credit cards with lines of credit from $25,000 to more than $150,000. The company — based in Bentonville, Arkansas, with corporate offices in New Jersey — boasts more than 21,910 credit approvals, worth more than $194 million.


LenCred highlights

  • LenCred says it uses proprietary technology to match lenders with business owners. CEO Tom Gazaway says the company’s software pulls information on about 20 different points of a potential borrower’s background to return a prequalification in seconds.
  • The company provides tech tools to help business owners separate and maintain business and personal finances and credit.
  • LenCred does not require businesses to meet certain revenue requirements and says it’s open to working with startups as well as more established companies. It does, however, require solid personal credit.
  • Gazaway says LenCred was founded to work with startup companies that might not have business credit histories, but whose owners have the kind of personal credit histories that make them good risks. With a business credit card, those owners can establish a business credit history separately that they can later use to qualify for traditional loans or lines of credit guaranteed by the Small Business Administration.

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What LenCred offers

LenCred pairs business borrowers with lenders offering unsecured lines of credit through an online portal. The company focuses more on your personal credit score than on business finances to determine prequalification.

Gazaway says the company’s software checks more than a dozen data points to help determine creditworthiness without doing a hard pull on credit that could affect a business owner’s credit score. Once a potential borrower prequalifies, LenCred pairs him or her with a sales advisor who can review lender options with them.
LenCred also offers a portal that includes information about equipment and SBA loans. Gazaway says these loans can be the next step for businesses after they have established solid credit by using business credit cards responsibly.

Loan product Loan amount Loan term APR range/ factor rate Fees Time to funding
Unsecured Line of Credit $25,000 to $200,000 Revolving credit Varies depending on lender and borrower’s creditworthiness; 12 percent to 15 percent is average Not provided by the lender As few as 5 days to 7 days or longer than 40 days; 30 days is average

Rates current as of 7/16/2018

LenCred provides extensive information about business financing on its site and offers to work one-on-one with business owners to improve their credit histories after they apply through its online portal or over the phone. The company also pairs up business owners with experts in preserving personal credit and separating personal finances from business finances.


Additional eligibility factors

LenCred has no additional eligibility requirements, although the lenders it works with might. In general, your personal credit history should be at least five years old and you should have at least one personal credit card with at least a $5,000 credit line.

Your established personal credit will help lenders see how you manage credit card debt over time. You’re unlikely to be approved for an unsecured business line of credit if you haven’t responsibly managed a personal credit card.


Businesses that are not eligible for LenCred loans

LenCred does not list any ineligible businesses, although the lenders it works might haves restrictions. Business owners who have never had a personal credit card and a solid credit score likely won’t qualify.


How to apply for LenCred financing

LenCred provides an online application form for assessing a borrower’s eligibility to work with its lenders. Following the pre-application, the company assigns people to help applicants through the rest of the process, including working with them on ways to maintain and improve their credit scores. The form asks for the following information:

  • How much financing you seek
  • Contact information including name, email address and phone number
  • How you rate your personal credit (poor, fair, good, excellent and I’m not sure)
  • Month and year you started your business (startups leave this blank)

Pros/Cons

Pros Cons
 No requirement for time in business   Not a lender, so can’t make immediate decisions
  No revenue requirement   Rates could vary widely, depending on lender
  Online tools for managing credit   Not for those with challenging personal credit histories

Who is the best fit?

LenCred is best for a business owner with solid personal credit and less established business credit who is willing to maintain and improve his or her credit.


Fine print

Understand that LenCred is not a lender. It facilitates obtaining unsecured lines of credit by matching lenders with borrowers. This kind of credit can have high interest rates — Gazaway says the average is 12 percent to 15 percent — but they can be much lower if you have excellent personal credit and manage the card responsibly.


The bottom line: How LenCred stacks up

LenCred is a solid option for those with good personal credit who need flexible options to obtain working capital for their businesses. Just be aware that it can take time to work through LenCred’s process and, if your credit isn’t the best, you could wind up paying rates as high as you would with any unsecured line of credit.

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