Getting a small business loan can be tricky, and a lot of factors are at play when you apply for one. If you’re struggling to secure a loan for your small business, here are six things that might be holding you back,

Credit History

Lenders look at your business’ credit history and your personal credit history when considering you for a loan. If either is in bad shape, your chances of securing the loan instantly plummet. The good news is, that a bit of time and some practice with financing may be able to change this.

Business Concept

If your business concept doesn’t appear to have a successful outlook, lenders might be less inclined to loan money to you. This applies whether your business is already up-and-running or you’re trying to start the company from scratch. Either way, you can always adjust your concept and reapply.

Your Chosen Lender

Different lenders and financial institutions have different standards for loaning money, so make sure you know what your lenders look for when investing. Before you apply, speak with someone in the business to learn what you need to qualify.

Lack of Experience

Much like applying for a job, mortgage, or credit card, lenders want to see that you know what your doing; it means you’ll know what you’re doing when you’re spending their money. If your business hasn’t been afloat for very long or you’ve never opened a business before, lenders might not be interested in working with you.

Poor Cash Flow

Because you’re only borrowing money from a lender, your financial institution wants to see evidence that your business is bringing in enough money to cover your regular expenses. If your cash flow is inconsistent or insufficient to pay overhead and payroll, you’ll probably have a harder time securing that small business loan.

Incomplete Applications

Loan applications often come with mountains of paperwork, and it’s easy to overlook, lose or incorrectly fill out pages. Go back through your application with a fine-tooth comb once you’ve filled it out and make sure you’ve done it correctly and completely. You can also go over the application with someone in your financial institution before you officially submit it.

Getting a small business loan can be a challenge, but the right mindset and a little bit of time and research can make all the difference. Remember: if at first, you don’t succeed, assess what held you back, make some changes and try again!