How To Get Business Loans for Florists
Updated September 8, 2022
As a florist, you face unique challenges, such as seasonal fluctuations in demand, high inventory costs for perishable goods, and the need for constant innovation to stay ahead of the competition. These challenges often require additional capital to manage cash flow, invest in new equipment, or expand your offerings to better serve your customers. Traditional financing options may be difficult to access, with stringent eligibility requirements and lengthy application processes, causing delays and missed growth opportunities for your business.
Obtaining a loan for a small business can be confusing, so here are four steps to guide you toward your “green” goal.
Hone Your Expertise In The Flower Business
If your lending institution doesn’t see clear evidence of your skill at arranging, selling, and tending to flowers, as well as sufficient know-how to run a business, you’ll never get past square one in your funding efforts. This critical first step requires more than a green thumb — you need to demonstrate your training through quantitative means.
How might you do this? Get a degree in Business Administration and/or take flower arranging courses. Win some contests for flower arranging and presentation. Work at a local florist and learn how to deal with flowers and customers alike. At the same time, study your future competitors in the industry closely. Learn what they’re doing, including steps you should emulate or avoid in your own business. Last but not least, apply for any local business permits or licenses you may need to operate your florist shop.
Build Your Credit Score and Business Plan
Do you know your current credit score? Now’s the time to find out. Get copies of your credit reports so you can fix any nagging inaccuracies that might be depressing your score unfairly. Commercial lenders will usually want to see a credit score of 650 or higher before they give you a favorable interest rate. If you need to take some time to rehabilitate your credit score, do so!
Once you’re comfortable with your credit score, it’s time to write your business plan. A business plan is a battle plan that not only helps you win a loan, but will also lead you to victory in the floral industry going forward. This is your chance to show your attention to detail, trumpet your knowledge and achievements (both as a florist and in the general business world), and convince the lender that you’re a good risk.
When writing your plan, present your financial outlook for the business, including industry overviews and forecasts of future growth, and back up your words with numbers. Don’t forget smaller but equally critical details such as your licenses/permits, federal tax ID number, and the planned location of your shop. List the amounts of capital you’ll need for leasing a space, purchasing inventory, hiring employees, and other essential startup expenses.
Apply for a Small Business Loan for Flower Shop
Applying for a commercial loan requires a certain amount of patience, so now that you’ve reached this step you may experience a bit of a waiting game. Submit your business plan along with your application forms and be prepared to wait several weeks for an approval or rejection. (If you choose to apply for a government-backed SBA loan, your wait may be even longer.)
Applying at multiple institutions will hedge your bets and give you the opportunity to shop around for the most favorable offers. If you own your own home, lenders might be able to give you an even better deal through a home equity loan — just be aware that you’re putting your home at risk.
Explore Alternative Financing Options For Florist
If you’re disappointed by traditional lending institutions’ responses to your loan applications, don’t fret — you still have other options. One such option is to secure a peer-to-peer loan through an online lender. These popular small to midsize business loans are somewhat easier to secure than standard commercial loans, though the interest rates may also be higher and the repayment window shorter. You might also look into crowdfunding campaigns and other alternative lenders.
Increase The Profits Of Your Floral Shop
The floral business is challenging but exciting, and it allows people to send gifts of beauty in the best and worst of times. You are providing a necessary service that all people need at intense moment in their lives, and you need to be prepared to attract new customers and inspire repeat business. In order to do so, you need money, and you can increase the profits of your florist shop by implementing these tried and true techniques.
Create a Floral Haven
The ambiance and environment of your floral shop is very important. People will assume that you are providing a low end service and product if they walk into a disheveled shop where flowers are simply placed on shelves with no real design. Instead, a flower shop must be an aesthetically pleasing space. Give customers a beautiful shop that inspires them to want to design their own flower-filled spaces.
Take the time to make sure the walls are freshly painted, and you may opt for art or other flower-inspired designs on the walls. Shelves should be a color that is complementary to the walls and other décor of the shop. Coordinate furniture with flowers. Go the extra mile. Designing and decorating a floral wonderland indoors that you can keep up on a daily basis will take an investment of time and money, but it’s worth it.
Give Yourself a Modern Edge
It’s vitally important that you have modern supplies and state-of-the-art equipment for your floral shop. In order to thrive, your floral shop will need refrigerated cases and many containers where you can store flowers. You need ribbons, baskets, and a plethora of other cutting supplies for arrange bouquets and gift sets.
Delivering Flowers Is a Necessity
If you’re going to serve your local community, delivering flowers is a necessity. Few people have time in their busy days to stop at your shop for all their needs. While they will want to come in sometimes, you need to also have a website set up where customers can select exactly what they want and provide details about the recipient of the flowers. A well-maintained delivery vehicle is a must for bringing orders to both happy occasions and sad situations such as funerals and memorial services.
Make it All Work
In order to implement all these positive changes at your floral shop and increase your profits, you may need business funding through a business cash advance. This short-term influx of cash can be just what you need to expand your shop. Not only can a business cash advance help your floral business quickly grow, but it may also cover short-term cash needs.
It’s easy to both apply and qualify for this cash advance, then the funds are deposited into your account within two days. Unlike a long-term, traditional loan where you are saddled down with making monthly payments, a business cash advance is repaid faster through a percentage of the increasing daily revenue that you’ll be enjoying. Credibly can provide a cash advance in a hurry.
As you can see, today’s florists can get their hands on the funding they need — if they just know what to do and how to do it. If you’re looking for modern business funding solutions, contact Credibly.
Frequently Asked Questions About Business Loans for Florists
What type of loans does Credibly offer for florists?
Credibly offers working capital loans, merchant cash advances, SBA loans, business lines of credit, equipment financing, long-term loans, and invoice factoring for florists, either directly or through their partners.
What are the eligibility requirements for Credibly loans for florists?
Eligibility requirements vary depending on the selected loan option. Generally, florists must have at least six months in business, a credit score of over 500, and average monthly revenue of $15,000+ ($180,000+ in annual revenue).
How can I apply for a loan for my florist business through Credibly?
To apply for a loan, take ten minutes to pre-qualify for small business loans online on Credibly’s website. Their experts will review your application and respond with the best funding options for your business.
Can I get a loan for my florist business if I have bad credit?
Credibly offers financing options like merchant cash advances, invoice factoring, and equipment financing, which are less dependent on credit as they are based on sales or use the equipment as collateral.
Are there financing options for new florist businesses or startups?
While startups rarely qualify for traditional bank loans or Credibly’s loans, other options for new businesses and startups include business credit cards, personal loans, and personal savings.