Since 1882, Fulton Bank has offered a range of financial products and services to their customers—including loan options for business owners. Part of Fulton Financial Services, Fulton and their affiliates are brick-and-mortar banks servicing Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, and Virginia. Therefore, if you’re looking for financing for your business, whether to simply add cash flow or expand your store, you might consider Fulton Bank business loans.
After all, for qualified business owners, business loans from traditional banks, like Fulton, have low interest rates and reasonable repayment terms. As an SBA Preferred Lender, Fulton Bank offers a full range of loan products to suit your business’s needs including SBA loans, lines of credit, and more. In this Fulton Bank business loans review, we’ll explore each of Fulton’s loan options, as well as other services they offer for business owners. If you aren’t located in the Mid-Atlantic area, or decide a bank loan isn’t right for you, we’ll also discuss some alternative lending options for you to consider for your financing needs.
Overview of Fulton Bank Business Loans
Fulton Bank offers five bank loans for business, and each one has specific variations depending on the product type. These loans can suit all kinds of small businesses in a range of different industries. As with most brick-and-mortar banks, you’ll have to go to a branch and talk to a loan advisor to find out the more in depth details about Fulton Bank’s business loan options. That being said, it’s worth noting that there are a few branches throughout the Mid-Atlantic area that are included under the Fulton umbrella:
- Fulton Bank, N.A.
- Fulton Bank of New Jersey
- The Columbia Bank
- Lafayette Ambassador Bank
- Fulton Mortgage Company
- Fulton Financial Advisors, N.A.
- Clermont Wealth Strategies
To help get you started in your search, however, we’ll go through all of the core business loan offerings from Fulton Bank and what each one typically entails, so you can get a better sense of the options available to you.
Business Lines of Credit
Business lines of credit are a flexible financing option that gives you access to a specific amount of funds, which you can draw from whenever you need, similar to a credit card. Unlike a traditional business loan, you only pay for the money you use—you make payments and incur interest once you’ve withdrawn funds. The flexibility of business lines of credit make them suitable for a variety of different business needs, such as addressing a cash flow gap or having quick access to funds in an emergency.
Another benefit of business lines of credit is that they can be easier to qualify for and can be great for building your credit score. Typically (the specifics will depend on your business and financial history), banks offer lines of credit between $10,000 to $500,000 with variable interest rates and repayment terms.
Fulton Bank has three lines of credit options:
- Secured lines of credit: These lines of credit require a personal guarantee—and for Fulton Bank, must be non-real estate assets.
- Overdraft protection lines of credit: These lines of credit, as their name suggests, are used to manage overdrafts from your business checking account.
- Business equity lines of credit: With these lines of credit, the equity in your home or business property is used as collateral.
These Fulton Bank lines of credit are offered at fixed or flexible rates, depending, of course, on your business’s needs and qualifications.
Despite the lengthy and intensive application process, SBA loans are probably the most desirable loan for business owners—and with good reason. Backed by the U.S. Small Business Administration, SBA loans are known for having the lowest down payments and interest rates, the longest repayment terms, and higher loan amounts, much more generous than traditional bank term loans. SBA loans can be used for nearly every business purpose, including buying inventory, financing equipment, or acquiring real estate. However, SBA loans can be the most difficult to qualify for and the application requires significant time and effort.
Luckily, Fulton Bank is an SBA Preferred Lender, which means they have the ability to review loan applications themselves and don’t require SBA approval, which enables them to expedite your application process. Additionally, Fulton Bank offers seven different SBA loan options, including both SBA 7(a) loans and SBA 7(a) sub-program loans:
- SBA 7(a) loans: The most popular SBA loan program, you can get a loan amount up to $5 million, with repayment terms up to 10 years for working capital, and up to 25 for commercial real estate loans.
- 7(a) small loan: This is a type of 7(a) loan with available amounts up to $350,000 and is typically faster to fund than the traditional SBA 7(a).
- SBA express: These loans are also available up to $350,000, but have a 36-hour turnaround time—which typically means smaller loan amounts and higher interest rates.
- CAPline loans: These are revolving SBA lines of credit for businesses operating at least one year. They have a maximum term of 10 years and are designed for specific use cases.
- Export express: These loans are specifically for exporters, offering a streamlined method to obtain a loan up to $500,000.
- Export working capital program: These loans are for larger exporting businesses, with amounts available up to $5 million.
- International trade: These loans are for exporters to use domestically to fund efforts related to international trade. Terms on these loans range from 7-25 years and amounts are available for $350,000 up to $5 million.
Of course, the best SBA loan program for your business will depend on your needs and financial history. An expert at Fulton Bank will be able to advise you and work directly with you through the application process.
Real Estate Loans
Commercial real estate loans are, as the name suggests, loans specifically for businesses that are looking to finance a real estate project or purchase. You can get commercial real estate loans from different lenders, including from a bank like Fulton. Generally, these loans are spread out over longer periods of time and commercial real estate loan terms can be anywhere from 20-25 years.
With these business loans, the property your business is developing serves as your collateral. Loan amounts can range from $200,000 to $20 million and interest rates range from 5% to 30%. Fulton Bank business loans for real estate are available for investment real estate, owner-occupied real estate, and raw land. For these types of loans, Fulton Bank’s website says they have competitive pricing and a flexible structure. Once again, you can work with a Fulton Bank expert for more specific information.
Business Term Loans
Term loans are another type of small business loan that falls under the larger category of Fulton Bank business loans. These are what we often think of as traditional bank loans. Business term loans consist of a lump sum of capital that you pay back with regular payments at a fixed interest rate, within a set term length (hence term loan). These loans are usually best for larger, one-time projects like purchasing equipment or refinancing existing debt. Generally, business term loans range in repayment terms from one to five years and come with variable interest rates, and loan amounts can be from $25,000 to $500,000.
Fulton Bank offers secured business term loans, which means that you’ll provide some type of personal guarantee or asset as collateral, in case you aren’t able to pay back the loan. With the guarantee involved in a secured loan, Fulton can then offer lower rates and longer terms.
Business Equipment Leasing
If you need financing to purchase new (or used) equipment for your business, Fulton Bank offers equipment leasing options to help you do so. Now, it’s worth noting that equipment leasing is different from equipment financing. In equipment leasing, the lessee (in this case, Fulton Bank) retains the title to the equipment. With equipment financing, the bank would lend you the capital to purchase the equipment and you would repay those funds, similar to a term loan. Equipment leasing is typically more expensive in the long term than equipment purchase; however leasing means lower monthly payments.
That being said, although technically not a loan, Fulton Bank includes equipment leasing in their business borrowing options. With their equipment leasing, Fulton Bank can finance 100% of your asset with no down payment required. You’ll have fixed payments during the full term of your lease to protect against rising interest rates. Additionally, all settlements, processing, and servicing for Fulton Bank equipment leasing is managed locally. Fulton Bank specializes in capital or finance leases, operating leases, municipal leases, and technology leases.
Additional Small Business Solutions From Fulton Bank
In addition to the different loans we’ve just discussed, Fulton Bank also offers other financial products for small businesses. These services include:
Fulton Bank has banking options for small businesses including checking accounts, saving accounts, and business credit cards. With several checking account and savings options, you can compare offerings to choose which account works best for you. For all of their accounts, however, Fulton Bank provides online and mobile access to your accounts through BOSS—their business online banking system. Additionally, there are five unique Fulton Bank business credit card options including a cash card and a credit card specifically for nonprofits and municipalities.
Business Payments and Processing
If your business accepts credit card payments, Fulton Bank can serve as your merchant services provider. Whether you need in-store or online functionality, Fulton Bank offers secure solutions to allow you to accept credit cards, debit cards, and even gift cards. Fulton Bank also offers ACH services for businesses, giving you the ability to accept ACH payments and set up recurring payments for customers.
Business Services and Employee Benefits
Finally, Fulton Bank provides various solutions to support business owners as well as employees. You can use Fulton Bank for retirement plan services, including 401(k) plans, IRAs, pension plans, and more. Fulton Bank also has several insurance offerings, a banking plan option for your employees, and health savings accounts. Just like with all of their business loans, you can talk to advisors at a local Fulton Bank for more information, or call their customer service line for general inquiries.
Alternatives to Fulton Bank Business Loans
Although Fulton Bank doesn’t specify eligibility requirements on their website, like most traditional bank lenders, it’s safe to assume that you’ll need a high credit score, strong business history, and a substantial annual revenue. If you don’t currently meet the qualifications for a business loan from a bank like Fulton (or don’t live within their service area), you might want to consider alternative lenders.
Alternative lenders typically have less strict qualifications, making it easier for a business to qualify for a loan and faster to fund. Although alternative lenders probably won’t be able to offer the same terms and interest rates as a bank like Fulton, they are much more accessible for a variety of small businesses. Luckily, there are numerous alternative options out there for you to explore. Here are two worth considering:
Kabbage Business Line of Credit
If you’re looking for quick and easy access to funding, you might want to try applying for a business line of credit from Kabbage. Kabbage offers short-term lines of credit, up to $250,000, with monthly repayments (unlike many other lenders that require daily or weekly payments). With this credit product, you can receive a six-month or 12-month line of credit and your interest rate will be higher in the first few months (between 1.5% and 10%). After the initial months, your rate will drop to 1.25%. For an 18-month line of credit, you will have a flat monthly fee of 1.25%-3.25% and carry prepayment fees.
You can apply and receive a Kabbage line of credit extremely quickly, even within the same day you apply online. Kabbage is an appealing option if your business cannot qualify for a business loan through a traditional bank, as they don’t check your business credit score and don’t weigh your personal credit score as heavily as other lenders. Additionally, Kabbage requires you only make $4,200 in monthly revenue (great for startups) and have a year in business—instead, they base their review of your application mostly on bank statements and accounting information. Therefore, if you need quick access to a line of credit to support your cash flow, Kabbage is an alternative lender to look into.
Fundation Business Lines of Credit and Term Loans
Another alternative lender with considerable options for small businesses is Fundation. Fundation offers business lines of credit and term loans, and has some of the best terms and rates you’ll find outside of a traditional bank. Fundation loans can range from $20,000 to $350,000 and terms from 12 months to four years. If you apply for a loan through Fundation, you can fund in as little as one day and up to 30. Fundation interest rates can fall anywhere from 7.9% to 28.9%, and payments are bi-weekly.
A great benefit of receiving a loan from Fundation is that Fundation does not have a prepayment penalty, meaning you can repay your loan sooner than your schedule dictates, without facing a fee. When applying for a loan from Fundation, most of the process is handled online, saving you time on gathering paperwork. To qualify for a Fundation loan, you need a business bank account with a minimum average balance of $2,000, a personal guarantee, and you need to have more than two employees working for your business. Although Fundation looks at both your personal and business credit score, they do not set a minimum business credit score requirement. Fundation business loans are worth considering if you want a simpler application process and the best rates and terms you’ll find with an alternative lender.
Fulton Business Bank Loans: Final Thoughts
If you’re a business owner in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, or Virginia, you’ll certainly want to consider choosing Fulton Bank as a lending partner. As is the case with traditional lenders, working with a bank like Fulton will give you access to a variety of loan amounts at reasonable terms and interest rates. Moreover, Fulton Bank business loans can meet the specific needs of your business as they have several product offerings (including multiple SBA loan types) and their advisors work directly with you to support your business and growth.
Additionally, if you want to bundle multiple financial solutions from one provider, Fulton offers checking and savings accounts, business credit cards, and other useful business services. Although Fulton doesn’t list their eligibility requirements, it’s not unreasonable to assume that you’ll have to meet top standards to get your business loan application approved. If your business can’t yet qualify for a bank loan, as many can’t, you can explore alternative lending products (like with Kabbage or Fundation) to get the capital you need. Ultimately, you’ll want to choose a loan product that’s not only accessible for your business, but that best suits your needs, and of course, that you can pay off responsibly.