Loans for startup businesses

Loans for startups

Find out about the loan options you have to finance your startup.

If you have an idea and are planning to open a company, you will likely be looking for sources of finance to get your startup off the ground. A startup loan can come in many forms and from a range of financiers, any of which might be the right option for you. The guide below will take you through all of these types to help you narrow down your search.

How do startup loans work?

As several people are looking to start companies and need a range of ways to fund them, there is no one “startup loan”. These loans encompass few different products, offering a number of features and can be applied for with a variety of lenders. Startup financing can be found from traditional lenders, alternative lenders, individual investors or investor groups. Learn more about them below.

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What options do startups have for financing?

Max Funding Business Loan

Max Funding Business Loan Offer

Max Funding allow you to borrow up to $500,000 for up to 3 years for your business, even if you have bad credit. Available to new and existing businesses and features no upfront fees and tax deductible interest repayments.

  • Interest Rate Type: Fixed
  • Application Fee: $0
  • Minimum Loan Term: 1 year
  • Maximum Loan Term: 3 year
  • Minimum Loan Amount: $1,000
  • Maximum Loan Amount: $500,000

Startups have a range of financing choices available, including:

Rates last updated December 3rd, 2016
Min Loan Amount Max. Loan Amount Loan Term Application Fee
Max Funding Business Loan
Get a business loan with a decision in 5 minutes with your money on the same day if you're eligible. Tax deductible interest repayments
$1,000 $500,000 1 to 3 years $0 Go to site More
  • Loans from traditional lenders. Banks and credit unions offer loans to people looking to start small businesses. The application process usually requires detailed business plans and you may need to put up security.
  • Loans from online and alternative business lenders. The number of online and other alternative business lenders have increased in the last few years. You can apply for business loans online and receive funding quickly, sometimes within 24 hours.
  • Credit cards. If you only need a small loan or require access to an ongoing line of credit, a credit card may be an option to consider. You can opt for a card that gives you 0% p.a. on purchases for up to 12 months
  • Angel investors. These are individual investors who help to finance your startup, usually in exchange for a partnership stake. You can find these individuals yourself or through startup hubs, meetups or investment groups.

How long does my business need to be in operation for a startup loan?

These are the criteria for lenders featured on in regards to how long your business needs to have been in operation:

Business lenderHow long you need to have been operatingRevenue criteriaFind out more
Banjo Loans2 years$500,000 per yearMore
BigstoneNo minimum$250,000 per yearMore
Business Fuel1 year$10,000 per monthMore
Capify6 months$10,000 per monthMore
GetCapital9 months$10,000 per monthMore
Kikka1 year$10,000 per monthMore
NAB12 monthsNo minimumMore
Max FundingNo minimumNo minimumMore
Merchant Cash12 months$5,000 per monthMore
MiFananceNo minimumNo minimumMore
Moula12 months$5,000 per monthMore
OnDeck12 months$100,000 per yearMore
ProspaNo minimumNo minimumMore
Spotcap12 months$100,000 per yearMore
ThinCatsNo minimumNo minimumMore

How can you compare startup loans?

Finding the right finance for your new company is important, and it all starts with comparing your options. Here are a few points to keep in mind:

  • How much do you need to borrow?
    You will be offered a loan that is based on the details you provide in your application. However, you may be able to see the minimum and maximum amounts on offer depending on the lender. This is more likely with online and alternative lenders and also with credit cards.
  • How long do you need to repay the loan?
    It may be difficult to determine how much you’ll be able to repay if your business isn’t off the ground yet, which is where having a sound business plan comes into play. Work out an approximate budget and don’t apply for a loan you can’t afford.
  • Do you need access to ongoing credit or a lump sum amount?
    Will you need continued access to finance? Consider whether an ongoing line of credit or a loan that offers a redraw may be a better option for you. Remember to take your repayments into account when budgeting your startup financials if you opt for the lump sum loan.

What regulations should you be aware of?

The startup sector is becoming more regulated as time goes on, making it easier for people to turn ideas into companies and for startups founders to access finance. The largest regulatory changes were announced in the Federal Government’s innovation agenda, which detailed various changes to be rolled out in 2016 and beyond. Notable funding-related regulations include:

  • From 1 July 2016 investors who support innovative startups will receive a 20% non-refundable tax offset on investments capped at $200,000 per year, per investor.
  • From 1 July 2016 investors who support innovative startups will receive a 10-year capital gains tax exemption for investments held for three years.
  • Already in place are changes to crowdsourced equity funding (CSEF) schemes to allow entrepreneurs to raise up to $5 million per year in funds from a large number of individuals in return for equity in their company.
  • Companies that went public to access CSEF have a five-year exemption from normal reporting and exemption requirements.
  • From 1 July 2016 partners in a new Early Stage Venture Capital Limited Partnership (ESVCLP) will receive a 10% non-refundable tax offset on capital invested during the year. Funding size will also be increased from $100 million to $200 million.

Startup meeting table

Frequently asked questions

Do I need to provide security?

This depends on the lender you apply with, but generally it’s up to you whether or not you want to offer a guarantee. Doing so can help lower your repayments but it also puts the asset at risk should you default on the loan.

What do I need to apply?

If you apply with a bank you will need a detailed business plan as well as your own personal information. Online business lenders usually list the application requirements on their website, and you can also find details on review pages.

What interest rate will I receive?

You’ll be offered a rate based on the details you provide in your loan application. Some lenders may offer you a rate estimate before you submit a full application.

Elizabeth Barry

Elizabeth is a senior writer for specialising in personal finance. She enjoys reading PDSs so you don’t have to.

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