How to Finance Gym Equipment
Fitness is important, but getting the right equipment can be expensive — especially if you want to do cardio indoors or start lifting weights. But you might not have to pay for the total cost of a gym upfront, as there are plenty of ways to finance gym equipment.
If you’re starting a commercial gym or getting some equipment for a gym at your office, you can take out different business loans to pay for it. If, however, you want a home gym for your personal use, you won’t be able to use a business loan. Still, you do have other options — for example, many companies that sell gym equipment finance those products as well.
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How to finance a home gym
Personal gym financing tends to be more affordable than business gym financing, especially if you buy used equipment— though your total cost will ultimately depend on how big a gym you’d like to build. If you only need a few sets of dumbbells and an old treadmill, it will probably be cheaper. But if you want to buy several specialized machines, it will likely be much more expensive.
Personal loan options
You can use a personal loan for many expenses, including a home gym. There are some specialized personal loans for home improvement, as well — but be sure to shop around for the best possible rates. Prequalification lets you check the terms you might receive from a lender without taking a hard credit check that can temporarily hurt your credit score.
Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL)
Some apps and retailers also offer BNPL payment plans, which may be cheaper for you compared with a traditional loan. BNPL offers consumers the flexibility to pay over time for large purchases, but if you miss your monthly payments, you could be liable for back interest.
No- or low-interest credit card
If you have excellent credit, you can likely qualify for a 0% intro APR credit card that’ll let you pay off your credit card charges over time with no interest. These credit cards typically start at 12 months with 0% APR, serving as the equivalent of an interest-free loan. Be sure to pay attention to when the intro period ends, though, so you don’t accidentally rack up interest.
Save your money to pay for it
Gym equipment is a luxury, and saving up your money to pay for the whole cost upfront will save you money in the long run. If you focus on budgeting and money management and ultimately determine that taking out more debt isn’t a wise choice for your personal situation, saving up so you can pay with cash may be the smartest option for you.
How to finance a business gym
The price range for a business gym can vary quite a bit. If you have a small business with an extra office you want to fill with secondhand cardio machines, you may have to pay a few hundred dollars. However, if you want to open a large commercial gym, you could be looking at a startup cost of hundreds of thousands of dollars to fill your gym with new equipment.
The extent of your financing needs may influence how you choose to pay for the equipment. But, since you’ll be using the equipment for business reasons, you’ll have access to credit products you may not be able to get otherwise:
Small Business Administration (SBA) loan
The government offers small businesses access to capital through SBA loans. This type of loan does have some requirements, but generally features better financing terms than other lenders. There are several SBA loans, though a 504 loan — which has a high maximum of $5.5 million — can be used specifically for machinery or equipment, like fitness machines for a commercial gym.
Compared to other forms of financing, the repayment terms for SBA loans tend to be longer. The 504 loan has terms of 10 or 20 years, for example. An SBA microloan, which has a maximum of $50,000 and shorter terms, may be a better fit for smaller office gyms.
Other business financing options
Businesses often have more access to financing, especially if they’re bigger or have been around for a while. Here are some additional ways companies can buy gym equipment:
- Unsecured business loans. LendingTree’s marketplace features several unsecured business loans with varying terms. These loans aren’t backed by collateral.
- Startup investors. If you’re starting a new business, you may be able to find investors in professional or social circles.
- Gym financing companies. Some lenders specialize in financing fitness centers. They can offer loan products geared to the specific needs of your business.
- Point-of-sale merchant financing. Many companies that sell gym equipment offer financing options, while others offer equipment leasing. Note that a lot of these options are subject to credit approval.
Pros and cons of gym equipment financing
You can build a more comprehensive gym with lower short-term costs
Loans are more costly in the long run due to the interest you pay
You could get access to business capital for commercial gyms
Lenders might be able to repossess the gym equipment if you don’t pay the debt
Regularly using fitness equipment can help improve your mental and physical health
You might not wind up using the equipment as much as you’d hoped to