Tips on Getting Approved For a Business Loan

cash-012Thinking about starting your own small business? According to the Small Business Association (SBA), there are approximately 27.9 million small businesses, and 18,500 firms with 500 employees or more operating in the U.S.

Among other things, you’ll have to pay for the business licenses, insurance, lease, utilities, payroll, marketing, tools, and on-going training. It’s not uncommon for some entrepreneurs to spend tens of thousands of dollars just to get their business up and running. The good news is that you can apply for loans at various banks and financial institutions, but the bad news is that you won’t always get approved.

If banks approved each loan application they received, they wouldn’t be able to stay in business. When lending money to entrepreneurs, they want to know it’s going to a well-structured business with a clear strategy and objective. After all, they probably won’t get their money back if the business fails. Understanding this principle will help you make smarter decisions on your loan applications; thus, improving your chances of approval.

Apply For The Right Loan

To boost your chances of approval, make sure you apply for the right type of  small business loan. There are several different types of small business loans, each of which is designed for a specific reason. For instance, there are startup loans, business acquisition loans, debt consolidation loans, etc. Ask yourself – how do I plan to use this capital? – and then choose the loan that best fits your professional needs.

If your goal is simply to pay off credit card debt that you acquired from launching your business, then you’ll want to apply for a debt consolidation loan. These loans are incredibly helpful for a number of reasons; they’ll consolidate some (or all) of your debt into a single convenient loan. Rather than sending half a dozen or more monthly payments to your debtors, you can make a single payment to the loan lender. And depending on the terms and conditions, a debt consolidation loan will probably have a lower interest rate than most standard credit cards.

Be Professional

You can’t expect a bank or financial institution to lend you money for a small business if you show up in casual attire with no real sense of professionalism. Before meeting with any lenders, gather all of your documents and financial records pertaining to the practice. Even if your business is still in the works, you can draft up projected sales and revenue with the help of an accountant. This shows banks that you are serious about your business, and as such, they’ll lend you money with more confidence.

What Is Quickbooks Condense Data Utility?

235235After spending some time in Quickbooks, you may come across a tool called “Condense Data Utility.” If you’re a newcomer to Quickbooks, you’re probably wondering just what in the world this tool does and how to use it. In an effort to shed light on this topic, we’re going to reveal everything you need to know about the Condense Data Utility in this blog post.

The Condense Data Utility is designed to reduce the total size of your company file by condensing closed transactions into journal entries and removing unnecessary elements from lists. It’s not uncommon for company files to exceed over 1GB in file size. And conventional wisdom should tell you that large files are slower and take longer to access/back up, which his where the Condense Data Utility comes into play. It reduces the company file size, thereby improving speed and overall performance.

It’s important to note that there’s no “undo” option for the Condense Data Utility. Once you’ve condensed your company file, there’s no turning back. So before jumping head first into this tool, it’s recommended that you evaluate your company file to determine whether or not it’s needed. See below for a list of common reasons to use the Condense Data Utility:

  • You are approaching a list limit.
  • Your company file is too large to back up in a reasonable amount of time.
  • Quickbooks is running unusually slow.
  • You have exhausted all other avenues of improving the performance of Quickbooks (e.g. hardware upgrade, Cloud management, increasing resources, starting a new company file).

To run the Condense Data Utility, select File from the main menu followed by Utilities and Condense Data. This will bring up the Wizard, which walks you through the steps to running the Condense Data Utility. If you need help during this process, click the Help button within the Wizard for a list of help topics and answers. During the initial setup, you’ll be asked to specify the lists that you wish to clean up. Feel free to choose any lists that you believe are large and problematic. When you are finished with the setup, click the Begin Condense button to initiate the process. There’s no turning back once you click the Begin Condense button, so make sure everything is correct.

How To Cancel a Payment In Quickbooks

money-houseDid you accidentally send a payment to the wrong vendor? This is an all-too-common scenario that thousands of business owners experience. No matter how hard you try to prevent it, accidents such as this are bound to happen. The good news is that you can cancel payments from within your Quickbooks account.

Before we start, it’s important to note than canceling a payment is not the same as stopping a payment. If the payment has already been processed, or if it’s being processed, you’ll need to contact the respective financial institution for more information.

If you’re using Quickbooks Online, you can cancel a payment in just a few easy steps. Each time you create a payment in Quickbooks Online, you are required to specify a delivery date. The recipient’s bank/financial institution won’t process the payment until this date, so as long as you cancel it before this time you shouldn’t encounter any issues. Furthermore, most banks have a 24-48 hour “processing time,” which doesn’t begin until the specified delivery date.

To cancel a payment in Quickbooks, access the Online Banking Center > Cancel Payments > and click the “Send Check” box for the transaction you wish to cancel. When you are finished, click “Close” to complete the process and exit out of the Banking Center.

Now go back to into the Online Banking Center and open the register associated with the account from which you made the payment. Scroll through the register until you find the transaction that you wish to cancel. Click the transaction to select it and click the Edit menu followed by “Cancel Payment.” Double check to make sure you are cancelling the correct payment and click OK.

So, how do you know if a payment was cancelled? You can find out by checking your Online Banking Center. Assuming the payment was properly cancelled, it should appear in your “Items to send” list.

For Desktop Quickbooks, you’ll need to access the bill or bill payment check in the register window, search for the transaction you wish to cancel, and click the “Go to” button at the top. Next, choose Edit > Void payment or Delete bill. Voiding a bill will change the transaction to $0, but it still keeps a record in your Quickbooks account. Deleting a bill, on the other hand, removes every trace of the transaction, including the record.

Did this tutorial work for you? Let us know in the comments section below!

Banks Now Charging For Debit Card Transactions

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADid you know that banks are charging for debit card transactions? This isn’t a new phenomenon, as they’ve been doing it for decades. However, recent federal laws may increase the amount of fees customers incur from using their debit card. If you have a bank checking account with a debit card, it’s important that you understand what these fees are and how they’ll affect you.

You may not realize it, but each time you swipe your debit card at a store or use it to make an online purchase, the retailer is charged a fee by the bank. If a store wants to have the ability to process debit or credit card transactions, they must pay the banks for its their use. For a while, fee amount charged by the bank was uncapped and was varied depending on the bank. It wasn’t until Obama signed into effect the Dodd-Frank Act which focused on protecting consumer’s rights and interests, one of which is placing a cap on how much banks could charge retailers and small businesses for processing credit and debit card transactions.

The Dodd-Frank Act may seem like a good idea on paper, but it’s a double-edged sword of sorts. Although it caps the fee banks charge retailers to use their cards, it’s also responsible for increasing the fees for cardholders. With less money charged to retailers and merchants, banks are looking for other methods to make up for this lost revenue, such as charging cardholders for using debit cards.

Not all banks are charging their customers for using their debit cards. Thankfully, it’s usually not a per-transaction fee either. Instead, banks are charging a flat monthly fee if their customers decide to use their debit cards. Bank of America is one such bank that’s now charging a flat $5 monthly fee to their debit card customers. Whether you make 1 transaction or 100, you’re still charged the flat $5 per month fee. Certain Wells Fargo locations are also charging their card holders a monthly fee of $3 for using their debit cards.

Both of the Wells Fargo and Bank of America debit card fee programs are new and considered to be in test mode. In fact, Wells Fargo is calling their program the pilot program. Because of this, we can expect to see some changes in the years to come. Even though they’re only charging a couple of dollars for customers to use their debit cards, it’s something that most people expect for free. Sure, the program might put some money into the bank’s pockets, but it will also turn away many potential customers.

Pros and Cons of Using Debit Cards

credit-cards-01One of the advantages associated with owning a debit card is that it gives you the ability to make online purchases. Not everyone has a credit card and many of those who do probably don’t want to use it every time they make a purchase. The high interest rate, fees and surcharges can really start to weigh down your bill. Thankfully, an alternative method is to use a debit card for online shopping.

If you’ve never made an online purchase using a debit card before, you might wondering how it works. The process varies depending on what website you’re purchasing from, but most involve using a secured checkout page to enter in your debit card information. Before making any online purchase, make sure the address in your web browser starts with “https”, which basically states the page is secure and your private information will remain protected.

When you’re ready to checkout, you’ll need to enter your debit card information into the website. After you’ve identified the website is secure, enter in your card number, expiration date, CCV and your billing information. Your order should be instantly processed after submitting your debit card information.

There are a couple of disadvantages to using a debit card over a credit card for online purchases, the most serious of which is the amount of liability protection offered. Most all credit cards are pretty good about dealing with theft situations. If someone steals and uses your credit card to rack up thousands of dollars in purchases, you can call the company and have the card immediately frozen and your charges reversed. On the other hand, a thief can wipe your bank account clean if they’re able to get their hands on your debit card. Although the bank will probably return some or all of the stolen money, it will certainly take longer than credit cards.

In addition to only making debit card purchased from a secured website, you should also refrain from storing your account information in a location where hackers and would-be thieves could access it. Even if you “think” your email account is safe, hackers are always retrieving data for thousands of accounts. In fact, nearly half a million email addresses and passwords of Yahoo users were recently compromised by hackers. The hackers responsible for this act left a note stating this wasn’t a malicious attack, but rather a wake up call to the vulnerabilities in Yahoo’s system.

How To Transfer Quickbooks To a New Computer

delete-1Thinking about upgrading to a new computer? If you have Quickbooks installed on your existing computer, you’ll need to transfer it to your new computer. The good news is that Intuit makes it relatively easy to transfer your files to a new device. The bad news is tha tmost people are unfamiliar with the process. If this sounds like a familiar scenario, keep reading for instructions on how to transfer your Quickbooks data to a new computer.

Steps To Transfer Quickbooks To a New Computer

  1. Create a backup of your current Quickbooks data.
  2. Copy the backup file and transfer it to your new computer.
  3. Install Quickbooks on your new computer.
  4. Restore the backup file on your new computer.
  5. Uninstall Quickbooks from your old computer.

Sorry if you were expecting more, but that’s all it takes to transfer Quickbooks data to a new computer! Just create a backup of your current Quickbooks data, transfer it to your new computer, install Quickbooks on the new computer, and restore the backup file. Depending on the size of your Quickbooks file and speed of your computer, it should take less than a hour from start to finish.

Tip: Rename Your Quickbooks File

You should never attempt to restore a Quickbooks file without renaming it first. Why is this a problem? Well, you may accidentally overwrite your existing file, resulting in a total loss of data. So, try to get into the habit of renaming your Quickbooks files before you restore them. It only takes a second to rename your file, but doing so could save you countless hours of work in the event you accidentally overwrite your existing file.

What About Quickbooks Online or Hosted Quickbooks?

Of course, another solution is to choose either Quickbooks Online or Hosted Quickbooks instead of the desktop versions. Quickbooks Online is somewhat limited in terms of its function. However, Hosted Quickbooks is essentially one of the desktop versions “hosted” by an authorized third-party vendor. This means you’ll have access to all of the features found in desktop Quickbooks, but you can access your account over the Internet instead of using traditional desktop-based software.

Did this tutorial for for you? Let us know in the comments section below!



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