Able allows small businesses owners with limited loan options to tap into the power of peer-to-peer lending while maintaining total control over their companies.
Able puts a twist on traditional peer-to-peer lending and gives small businesses access to more funding than they could raise on their own. With a regular peer-to-peer loan, you’re limited to the amount you can get from friends, family, and others who believe in your business. They allow you to request an amount between $1,000 and $1 million and covers the percentage of the loan your backers are unable to provide.
Whether or not you can raise the entire loan from peer lenders, they handle the payback process to ensure your backers receive a return on the money they invest. However, unlike with traditional investors, you’re not obligated to relinquish any equity in your business to those providing money toward your loan. You retain full control over how your company is run and what steps you take to drive growth, and you’re free to do whatever you wish with the money from Friends and Family loans or Growth loans.
They give businesses a choice of three loan options: Friends and Family, Growth, or Debt Refinancing (Refi). This allows you to choose a loan suited to your current financial needs. Friends and Family loans are funded exclusively through peer contributions. Growth and Refi loans require 10 to 50 percent of the loan to be funded by backers, and Able makes up the difference. Raising more money from peers means borrowing less from Able, and you wind up paying less interest over the course of the loan.
You have the option to “self-back” your loan if you have enough of your own cash on hand. Companies with solid credit histories and good cash flow may qualify for a loan without the need for third-party investments. With every loan, you and your backers get peace of mind knowing that Able is there to handle payments and payouts so that everyone benefits.
Each loan type has its own minimum requirements. For Growth and Refi loans, your business must have:
If your business doesn’t meet these requirements, you’re still eligible to apply for a Friends and Family loan. This lending option has no strict qualification guidelines aside from requiring a minimum $1,000 investment from each backer, the same is required for a Growth loan. To be a backer for the Friends and Family option or the Growth option, an individual must:
You’re allowed to provide backing for your own loan from savings or other personal funds. If you can’t meet the minimums for backer contributions for whatever reason, Able is willing to work with your business to find a solution.
Preapproval for a loan is based on a quick two-part application asking for:
As an alternative lender, Able provides funding to companies unable to qualify for traditional bank loans due to financial standing or length of time in business. The structure of their loan platform differs from other alternative lenders to provide more choices and flexibility in loan types, terms, rates, and payback options.
All of Able’s loans begin with the concept of peer-to-peer lending, meaning money comes from individuals with an interest in your business rather than a bank, credit union, or other loan provider. How they handle these loans is what sets them apart. In a traditional peer-to-peer loan, you’re responsible for obtaining funds and working out terms and rates with each person investing in your business. With Able, you only have to secure the funding required for the loan type you choose. They handle the structure of the loan and all payments, including interest and principal payments to backers.
You can choose one of three loan types from Able:
● Friends and Family –These loans range from $1,000 to $1 million and are completely funded by independent backers. Using Able’s loan calculator, you can customize terms and interest rates and split payments between the principal and interest in whatever way works for you. The company collects payments from you and distributes payouts to backers.
● Growth – Available in amounts from $25,000 to $1 million, are 10 to 50 percent funded by backers, and Able makes up the difference. Term lengths may be anywhere from one to five years. Depending on financial standing, some businesses may qualify for loans without backers.
● Debt Refinancing (Refi) – With an average interest rate of 13 percent, Able claims you can save up to $5,000 per month over what you’re paying to cover current debts. At least 10 percent of the loan must be raised from backers, and terms range from one to five years.
All loan types provide funding within about one week from the time you obtain money from your backers. Able states that a backer “can be a friend, family member, advisor, or customer who believes in you and your business.” You can back all or part of a loan yourself if the option is available to you, but the money has to come from private funds and not from your business.
By reducing the risk to backers and increasing the amount of funding available from peer-to-peer lending, Able provides flexibility for small businesses just starting out or looking to grow. Lower risk also means more favorable interest rates for you and predictable returns for your lenders.
Able emphasizes their focus on working with businesses to ensure the loan process goes smoothly. If you have a difficult time getting the funds you need from backers or find you can’t meet your monthly payment obligation, Able will help you find a way to get over potential setbacks so that you can focus on running your business. With the flexible payment structure, a simple pre-approval application, and multiple loan types, you should be able to find a financing option suited to your business.
All Able loans are subject to a 3% origination fee, but the company doesn’t charge any penalties for early repayment. This means you can pay back your loan on your timeline and have the option to get out of debt faster if cash flow allows.
Friends and Family loans are paid back to Able in monthly installments covering both the interest and the principal. You can also opt to have interest-only months when setting up the structure of the loan. If you choose to pay back both interest and principal each month, the payments are amortized equally over the terms of the loan. Backers receive payments from Able on both the principal and the interest each month.
Growth and Refi loans have a slightly different payment structure. Like Friends and Family loans, the payments are amortized into equal monthly amounts for the duration of the terms. However, backers receive only interest payments until the loan is paid back to Able in full. Once Able receives the sum of your loan, they pay backers both the principal and interest payments. This lowers the risk to Able and allows them to provide lower interest rates.
Able provides simple and clear contact details for customers with questions about the loan process. You can use the live chat on the site to obtain basic information or call the company to get in touch with a representative. Able also provides both an email address and a mailing address for written communications.
Most questions about different loan types can be answered by visiting a landing page for the service. Along with detailed information about how each loan works, these pages include extensive FAQ sections addressing common questions about Able’s unique lending process. More information about small business lending and how to handle debt can be found on the company’s blog.
If you’re interested in learning more about how they have helped other businesses, you can read their collection of case studies. These stories and profiles of other companies funded by Able can show how the lender may be able to benefit your business and support your vision for future growth.
Able expands on the concept of peer-to-peer lending with their Friends and Family, Growth, and debt refinancing loan options. By using a unique structure in which part or all of a loan is funded by independent backers and any gap in funding is filled by Able, this alternative lender can provide growing businesses with loans as large as $1 million.
Preapproval for a loan takes only minutes, and funding is usually received within a week after securing all backers. Backing can come from family, friends, customers, advisors, or your own private funds. This structure allows you to get the money you need with flexible terms and rates, and ensures that backers receive returns on their investments.
Located in Austin, TX, Able was established in 2014 to serve businesses in need of alternative lending options. Founded by the same people behind the mail startup Outbox, Able works to secure and facilitate peer-to-peer loans for small businesses in every stage of growth. The services offered lower the risk for both backers and companies, making the lending process easier for all parties. An A+ BBB rating and multiple support options indicate a dedication to customer service and make this lender a favorable option as an alternative to traditional lenders.
Able Lending, Inc.
800 West Cesar Chavez Street B101
Austin TX 78701
About Theresa HoughtonAs a business owner, Theresa “Sam” Houghton understands the challenges
involved in moving a company forward. She values the input of others but
also recognizes the importance of taking the lead to make things happen.
With more than half a decade of experience in the business world, Theresa
is able to offer high quality advice to businesses of all sizes.