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Best Emergency Business Loan Options

If a disaster or unexpected business expense has you looking for capital, check out our top five choices for emergency loans.

    Chris Motola
  • Last updated onUpdated

  • Chelsea Krause
  • REVIEWED BY

    Chelsea Krause

    Lead Staff Writer

Advertiser Disclosure: Our unbiased reviews and content are supported in part by affiliate partnerships, and we adhere to strict guidelines to preserve editorial integrity.

No matter how good you are at planning, there may come a time when you need an emergency business loan. Whether you dealing with a massive regional disaster, like a hurricane, or you just need to re-up your inventory in a hurry, being able to access capital when you need it can be critical to the survival of your business.

You’ve already shaken out your pants for loose change, so now what do you do? Where do you look for an emergency business loan?

Read on, and we’ll try to help you out.

Learn More About Our Top Picks

CompanyBest ForNext StepsBest For
OnDeck

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  • Term loans, lines of credit
  • FICO: 625+
  • APR: 29.9%+
  • Term loans, lines of credit
  • FICO: 625+
  • APR: 29.9%+

Apply Now

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Fundbox

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  • Lines of credit
  • FICO: 600+
  • APR: 4.66%+
  • Lines of credit
  • FICO: 600+
  • APR: 4.66%+

Apply Now

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Lendio

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  • Term loans, short-term loans, lines of credit, merchant cash advances
  • FICO: No minimum
  • APR: Varies by lender
  • Term loans, short-term loans, lines of credit, merchant cash advances
  • FICO: No minimum
  • APR: Varies by lender

Apply Now

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Riviera Finance

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  • Invoice factoring
  • FICO: No minimum
  • Discount Rate: 2%+
  • Invoice factoring
  • FICO: No minimum
  • Discount Rate: 2%+

Visit Site

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National Business Capital

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  • Term loans, lines of credit, equipment financing, SBA loans
  • FICO: 580+
  • Interest rates: 7%+
  • Term loans, lines of credit, equipment financing, SBA loans
  • FICO: 580+
  • Interest rates: 7%+

Apply Now

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Read more below to learn why we chose these options.

5 Best Emergency Loans For Small Businesses

The emergency loans feature an expedited application process and/or the ability to be used as a rainy day fund. Here are the best emergency loans for small business.

OnDeck: Best Business Line Of Credit

OnDeck


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Pros

  • Multiple types of finance are available
  • Application process is fast & easy
  • Funds are disbursed quickly

Cons

  • Rates can be expensive
  • Not available to businesses in some industries

Why We Chose OnDeck For Best Business Line Of Credit

While OnDeck isn't the cheapest way to get financing, it's an excellent one-stop shop for fast, emergency loans and lines of credit. A successful loan application can get money into your bank account within two business days.

Alternatively, you can prepare for a rainy day with an OnDeck line of credit.

OnDeck Services

OnDeck offers term loans up to $250,000 with repayment terms of up to 24 months. OnDeck also offers lines of credit up to $100,000 with repayment terms of 12 months.

OnDeck Rates & Fees

For OnDeck’s term loans, APRs range from 29.9% to 97.3%, with most borrowers paying an average of 62.1%. An origination fee of up to 5% may apply.

OnDeck’s lines of credit have APRs that range from 29.9% to 65.9%, with the average borrower paying about 48.9%. There are no origination fees, but a $20 monthly maintenance fee will apply to most borrowers.

OnDeck Eligibility Requirements

To qualify for funding from OnDeck, you must meet these requirements:

  • 1 year in business
  • $100,000 per year in revenue
  • 625+ credit score

Get Started With OnDeck

Read our in-depth review

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Fundbox: Best For Next-Day Business Funding

Fundbox


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Pros

  • Application process is fast & easy
  • Funds are disbursed quickly
  • Early repayment discounts

Cons

  • Rates can be expensive
  • No long-term financing options

Why We Chose Fundbox For Next-Day Business Funding

When it comes to raw speed, it's hard to do better than Fundbox. Its fully automated application process can be completed in as little as three minutes. Funds can hit your bank account as soon as the next business day, depending on what time of day you complete your application.

Fundbox Services

Fundbox offers business lines of credit up to $150,000.

Fundbox Rates & Fees

Fundbox’s rates start at 4.66% for 12-week repayment terms and 8.99% for LOCs with 24-week repayment terms.

Fundbox Eligibility Requirements

To qualify for funding from Fundbox, you must meet these requirements:

  • 6 months in business
  • $100,000 per year in revenue
  • 600+ credit score

Get Started With Fundbox

Read our in-depth review

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Lendio: Best Marketplace For Emergency Loans

Lendio


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Pros

  • Multiple types of financing available
  • High borrowing amounts
  • Low credit score requirements for some products

Cons

  • Rates can be expensive
  • Funds can take awhile to disburse
  • Application process can be slow

Why We Chose Lendio For Best Emergency Business Loan

Lendio is a loan marketplace rather than a direct lender, which means you can apply to its entire pool of lenders with a single application. While Lendio isn't necessarily the fastest option on this list, disbursement is significantly faster than most banks. And you may still end up saving time by increasing your per-application rate of approval.

Lendio Services

Lendio offers nearly any type of funding you need for your business, including:

  • Short-term loans up to $500,000
  • Term loans up to $2 million
  • Lines of credit  up to $500,000
  • Merchant cash advances up to $200,000
  • SBA loans up to $5 million
  • Equipment financing up to $5 million

Lendio Rates & Fees

Lendio’s rates and fees vary based on product type and the lender you select. Lendio has low-interest options such as SBA loans, as well as more expensive funding like MCAs for borrowers with bad credit or other challenges.

Lendio Eligibility Requirements

Lendio works with multiple lenders, and each lender has its own set of eligibility requirements for funding. However, Lendio recommends having a credit score of at least 550 to qualify. Additionally, the more revenue, higher credit score, and longer time in business you have, the better odds you have for qualifying for better rates and terms.

Get Started With Lendio

Read our in-depth review

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Riviera Finance: Best Emergency Invoice Factoring

Riviera Finance


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Pros

  • Suitable for startups
  • No minimum credit score
  • Competitive terms & fees
  • Easy application process

Cons

  • Must have unpaid invoices to use
  • 6-month contract required (in most cases)

Why We Chose Rivera Finance For Best Invoice Factoring

One particularly frustrating scenario in an emergency is when you have money due to come in, but your invoices haven't been paid yet. It turns out that you can get an advance on those invoices through invoice factoring. Essentially, you're selling your unpaid invoices to a factoring company at a small discount. If you're in a hurry, one of the best companies to do this with is Riviera Finance, a non-recourse invoice factoring company.

Rivera Finance Services

Rivera Finance offers credit faculties up to $2 million with a contract length (generally) of 6 months.

Rivera Finance Rates & Fees

Discount rates for invoice factoring start at 2%, with an advance rate of up to 95%

Rivera Finance Eligibility Requirements

To qualify for invoice factoring through Rivera Finance, you must meet these requirements:

  • 1 year in business
  • $100,000 per year in revenue
  • 625+ credit score

Get Started With Riviera Finance

Read our in-depth review

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National Business Capital: Best Advisory Service For Emergency Loans

National Business Capital


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Pros

  • Low credit score requirements
  • Customers are assigned an account manager
  • Application process is fast & easy
  • Long-term financing options available

Cons

  • Rates can be expensive

Why We Chose National Business Capital For Best Advisory Service

National Business Capital is another loan aggregator that matches applicants to a lender within its pool of affiliates. The service is surprisingly fast for an aggregator and is willing to work with a wide variety of industries, including cannabis.

Applicants may also appreciate that National Business Capital assigns a financing advisor to make recommendations to improve their chances of approval.

National Business Capital Services

National Business Capital offers:

  • Term loans up to $5 million
  • Lines of credit up to $5 million
  • Equipment financing up to $5 million
  • SBA loans up to $5 million

National Business Capital Rates & Fees

National Business Capital’s rates vary by type of product and lender but generally begin around 7%. Some lenders may charge additional fees.

National Business Capital Eligibility Requirements

To qualify for funding through National Business Capital, you must meet these requirements:

  • 1 year in business
  • $120,000 per year in revenue
  • 580+ credit score

Get Started With National Business Capital

Read our in-depth review

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Methodology: How We Chose Our Top Picks

Merchant Maverick reviews small business funders according to criteria that include interest rates, borrower qualifications, term lengths, and availability of funds. Funders are assigned an aggregate score representing their overall performance relative to similarly situated lenders.

For this list, we gave additional consideration to funders that can quickly approve and disburse funds and/or offer products that are useful for unexpected expenses like lines of credit. As always, we recommend you use this list as a starting point for your research since individual businesses’ needs vary greatly.

SBA Disaster Loans

The list above covers private lenders that can cover capital shortfalls for personal emergencies. However, if your business has been affected by a federally declared disaster, your best bet may be to seek an SBA disaster loan.

These loans have long term-lengths and low interest rates, making them far more suited to recovering from a serious disruption to your business. SBA disaster loan options include:

  • SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL): EIDLs are reserved for small business owners facing financial hardship due to a disaster. These loans have interest rates of up to 4% and repayment lengths of up to 30 years.
  • SBA Physical Damage Loans: SBA Physical Damage Loans are reserved for business owners (and homeowners) whose private property has been physically damaged as a result of a disaster. These loans have repayment periods of up to 30 years, with interest rates of up to 4% for businesses that can’t get credit elsewhere (8% for other businesses).
  • Military Reservist Loans: These loans cover businesses that lose critical personnel due to military deployment.

4 Tips For Getting An Emergency Business Loan

When you’re looking for emergency funding for your small business, you don’t have a lot of time to weigh your options the way you would during normal times.

Here are some tips for when time is of the essence:

  • Get The Right Type Of Loan: Some types of loans disburse much faster than others, but that’s only one part of the picture. Consider the repayment schedules and whether your business will bounce back quickly enough to service your debt. You don’t want to compound your emergencies.
  • Get An Online Loan: There are some very good reasons to stick with traditional banks. They offer better rates and longer terms in most cases. But what they don’t usually offer is speed. Online loans, on the other hand, are designed to be fast and easy to apply for. If there’s ever a time where that model shines, it’s when you need money quickly.
  • Avoid Scams: Desperate people make good marks, which is something you don’t want to be. While you may be in a hurry, make sure you’re dealing with a reputable lender. Read reviews of the company on sites such as Merchant Maverick, and search for user reviews to see what the lender’s reputation looks like.
  • Understand The Cost Of The Loan: Loans can be complicated, especially since the lending industry is notorious for hiding costs. Remember that you’re effectively buying money for more than it’s worth, and be sure to ask about any fees involved beyond interest. Make use of online tools to evaluate your offer.

Get The Right Emergency Loan For Your Business

There’s no shortage of options for getting emergency small business loans. The trick is making sure you get it on the schedule you need at a rate you can afford. Assessing the vulnerabilities of your business can go a long way towards being prepared for a financial emergency, as can having a lender you can trust to give you the best small business loans you can get during an emergency.

FAQ: Emergency Business Loans

Can I borrow money and get it instantly?

While you can’t borrow money and get it instantly, you can get it very quickly, often within a business day or two. This usually requires working with an online lender like OnDeck which features an expedited application process.

What credit score do you need for an emergency loan?

A higher credit score inevitably gives you more options when it comes to getting an emergency loan, but it’s possible to find emergency funds with a credit score in the 500s. Borrowers with at least a 580 credit score will fare better, however.

How do I get an emergency loan online?

Getting an emergency loan online is as simple as applying with an online lender like Lendio or Fundbox through their respective websites. To improve your chances of being approved, you’ll want to have information about your business handy and, generally, at least three months of bank statements to assess your income or revenue.

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Chris Motola

Chris Motola

Senior Staff Writer at Merchant Maverick
Chris has been writing about small business topics since 2003. In 2015, he joined Merchant Maverick, where he writes about business financing, payment processing, and demographic trends in entrepreneurship. Chris has been featured in Fox Business, ABC News, Yahoo Finance, GoBankingRates, Newsweek, BizJournals, and other publications. He has a Bachelor’s of Arts in English Writing Arts from SUNY Oswego, and a Masters of Science in Interactive Media from the University of Central Florida. He currently resides in the Hudson Valley region of New York.
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