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Busting the lending myths

We are keen to help businesses of all sizes access the funding and support needed to back their ambitions. Here, we answer some common misconceptions associated with bank lending.

Our responses are tailored for businesses turning over £3m or less. Visit our Loans and Finance pages to find out the answers tailored to £3m-£25m.

Question mark icon"Banks aren’t lending, especially to small businesses"

We are lending. We approve eight out of ten loan and overdraft applications1. As a responsible lender not all loan and overdraft applications will be successful, but we may be able to support your business with alternative finance options and guidance to other sources of funding or government backed schemes.

With our Eligibility tool see how likely you are to get a Business Loan or Overdraft. View indicative interest rates and repayment details. You can try different options without affecting your credit rating.

We provide lending to support business of all sizes. Our range of funding solutions means that we may be able to help you find the right type of funding for each business need.

Loans icon"Applying for lending is a difficult process"

We provide support with the application process because we understand the time pressures facing business owners. Our application process can be completed by phone or online. Our customers get instant online decisions on business loans up to £10,000.

Our website also provides business guides and a checklist to ensure applicants have all the information they need before they apply.

Visit our Loans and Finance page for more details.

Secure icon"Loans have to be secured against my personal assets and finances"

Securitisation for lending isn’t always necessary or required. We will only seek security where appropriate, on a case by case basis, reflecting risk and type of facility. We can also support your ambitions through government led schemes, which are suitable for a range of different circumstances.

Percent icon"My credit rating will be damaged by a rejection"

During the application process, we will request your permission to carry out a credit assessment. Unless your credit history shows multiple applications, your credit rating shouldn’t significantly deteriorate. Lenders are likely to see occasional enquiries as part of a typical business process. If we do reject your application, we can discuss alternative finance options or refer you to our appeals process. With our Eligibility tool you can try different options without affecting your credit rating.

Search icon"My lack of credit history is a problem"

A lack of credit history isn’t necessarily a problem. Credit history is just one aspect of what we consider when assessing a loan or overdraft application. Our Finance Application Checklist may be able to support your application.

Fees icon"My poor credit history will be a problem securing a loan or overdraft"

Lending decisions depend upon the circumstances of each business. We review each business on a case by case basis and assess their overall risk profile. We may be able to offer funding with certain terms or alternative sources of finance. The key thing is not to be deterred from trying if it’s what your business needs to grow.