Whether you’re preparing to apply for coronavirus financial support or still undecided on whether a loan is right for you, this checklist will help to guide you through your next steps.
Following government guidance published in December 2020, the closing date for the Bounce Back Loan Scheme (BBLS) and Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) has now been extended to 31 March 2021.
This checklist outlines the key areas you should consider before applying for a loan and what to expect from the application process.
Balance short-term and long-term requirements
Understanding your cash position and revenue forecast will help you decide whether you need extra financial support.
- Forecast best and worst case scenarios for the next three to six months so you can pinpoint parts of the business that might need extra support
- Think realistically about the viability of your current product or service. This may involve turning a reactive pivot into a longer-term strategy
- Consider both your short-term cash requirements and the investments you need to make in order to grow your business
- Look at the government’s dedicated business support finder to understand all the options available
- Speak to an accountant or financial advisor for impartial advice about your best course of action
The Bounce Back Loan Scheme
The BBLS is designed to help small and medium-sized businesses access finance quickly. Businesses can borrow between £2,000 and £50,000, but it’s limited to 25 per cent of company turnover.
- Read the information provided on the government website to understand the eligibility and repayment terms for the Bounce Back loan
- Review the Pay As You Grow scheme, which provides extra flexibility for repayments
- Speak to your accountant about building a future repayment plan. A repayment calculator like this one can also be useful
- Find a list of accredited lenders here. The British Business Bank recommends applying for a loan through your regular banking provider
- Prepare the relevant information in advance. This includes:
- Company name, address and registration number
- Estimated turnover for 2019
The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
Businesses can borrow up to £5m through the CBILS.
- Bear in mind that CBILS terms, interest and fees differ to the BBLS. Read more information on the government website
- Prepare supporting documents in advance. This varies between lenders but normally includes:
- Management accounts
- Business plan
- Historic accounts
- Details of business assets
- Think about other information that might help your application, like plans for cutting costs or an improved sales and marketing strategy
- Find out how other business owners are using the BBLS and CBILS to get ideas on where best to invest the funds