Sources of funding

It can sometimes be a challenge to start or build a business without an injection of cash at the beginning. There are various sources of funding available to help small businesses like yours get off the ground.

Start-up loans

There are some organisations that will provide access to money in the form of a start-up loan. For example, The Start Up Loans Company, which is a subsidiary of the British Business Bank and delivers the Government’s Start Up Loans programme. They provide finance and support for businesses who might struggle to access other forms of finance.

You may apply for an unsecured personal loan, to be used for business purposes only. The loan has a fixed interest rate of 6% per annum, repayable over a term of one to five years. They also offer up to 15 hours of mentoring support during the first year if your application is successful.

There are certain eligibility criteria you should meet to be able to apply for a Start Up Loan:

  • You’re 18 years of age or over;
  • You’re a current UK resident;
  • You’re starting a new business or have been trading for up to 24 months;
  • You’re unable to secure finance from other sources (self-declaration is ok);
  • Your business is based in the UK;
  • You have the right to work in the UK;
  • Your business type and loan purpose are eligible under the terms of the scheme; and
  • You pass our credit checks and you can afford to repay the loan.

A credit check will be conducted, with your consent. If you’re approved for credit you will have to provide some documents. The organisation will review your business plan and cash flow forecast to assess the viability of your business, and a personal survival budget, to assess your affordability for the loan. 

You will also be assigned a business adviser to help you to put the application together, so don’t worry if you haven’t written these types of documents before. The company also has templates for all of the documents, to help you out.

You can begin an application by registering on the website. You’ll then receive an email which will detail the next steps of the process.

You can call the Start Up Loans Company on 0344 264 2600, or email them at with any questions you have or for help completing your application. Office hours are Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm (excluding bank holidays).

Please remember that the information on these pages is for your guidance only, and you should seek financial advice from a suitably qualified person. 

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