Citibank Business Loans Review
- Financing is suited for small to large businesses
- Rates tend to be inexpensive
- Long-term financing options available
- Few additional fees
- Borrower qualifications might be hard to meet
- Website advertising is not informative
- Poor public reputation
Citibank Business Loans Overview
Citigroup is a New York City-based financial services corporation and one of the nation’s largest banking institutions. Citibank is its consumer division.
Citibank provides several lending products to small businesses, including term loans and lines of credit. Although loans from Citi are considered among the most competitive in the business, they are difficult to qualify for. This is compounded by the bank’s opaque terms, which make it difficult for businesses to know if they would qualify in the first place.
Curious about what Citibank has to offer in terms of business loans? (We will not discuss Citibank personal loans in this article.) Read on.
Table of Contents
Citibank offers the following lending products to qualified businesses:
- Business installment loans
- Business lines of credit
- Commercial mortgages
- Healthcare acquisition financing
Though bank loans such as Citibank business loans are generally suited to larger, established businesses, Citi offers loans to small businesses as well. In particular, smaller businesses will be interested in Citibank’s installment loans, for purchasing fixed assets such as equipment, or their lines of credit, for short-term or recurring cashflow needs. Those lending products are available in amounts as small as $5,000 and $10,000 respectively.
While it’s not a loan, Citibank offers small business credit cards, which may be more appropriate for small businesses that don’t qualify for a loan.
Citibank plays its cards pretty close to its chest, but most qualifying companies will need to have been in business for at least two years. Citibank doesn’t disclose credit requirements, but you can expect to have a hard time qualifying if your credit score is below the 600 mark. Similarly, there are no explicit income requirements, but you’ll want to have at least $1.25 worth of revenue for every $1 of debt you’re servicing.
|Time in business:||2 years|
Additionally, Citibank may impose geographic restrictions on some of its business lending products, and you will also need to have a Citibank business banking account, as well as personal guarantees from all owners collectively owning 51% or more of the business.
Terms & Fees
Citibank offers installment loans and lines of credit to businesses in both secured and unsecured forms. Citibank also provides healthcare acquisition financing and commercial mortgages. Generally, bank loans including Citibank offer lower interest rates than what you would expect from an online loan.
Unfortunately, the bank is extremely opaque when it comes to terms and fees, divulging almost none of that information publicly. To get that information, you’ll need to speak with a specialist at your local Citibank branch.
Broadly speaking, however, there are a few things you can expect from Citibank’s products.
Business Term Loans
- Borrowing amount: $5,000 – $3,000,000
- Term length: Up to 7 years
- Interest rates: Fixed
Lines Of Credit
- Borrowing amount: $10,000 – $250,000
- Terms: Revolving
- Interest rates: Variable
Citibank also has a larger line of credit for businesses that need from $250,000 to $3,000,000.
Healthcare Acquisition Financing
- Borrowing amount: $250,000 – $3,000,000
- Term length: Up to 10 years
- Interest rates: Fixed
- Borrowing amount: $250,000 – $1,000.000
- Term length: 5-20 years with amortization up to 25 years
- Interest rates: Fixed or variable
To apply for a business loan from Citibank, you’ll need to speak to a representative at your local branch. Unfortunately, there aren’t many resources online to prepare you for Citibank’s specific process. Expect to have to provide information about your business, your bank accounts, and your resources. If you have business partners, you’ll likely need their information too. You can search for a branch near you using the company’s locator.
Again, you’ll also need to have a business bank account with Citibank before you can apply for one of their lending products.
Sales & Advertising Transparency
Compared to its competitors, Citibank’s website is crowded, text-heavy, and not especially useful. You’ll find very little information there about Citibank’s business lending products beyond the fact that they exist. Further, calling their customer support line and following the voice directory to loans will end in you being instructed to visit your local branch.
Customer Service & Technical Support
You can reach out to Citibank’s customer service by phone. You can use the site to open or manage an account. Because of the size of the organization, customer service varies highly by location.
Negative Reviews & Complaints
If you’ve kept an eye on the news cycle over the last 10 years, you’ll know that big banks have a bit of an image problem. Citi is no exception. The bank rates a dismal F on BBB. This rating is based on a variety of factors ranging from failures to respond to complaints to government action against the bank. Specific issues with the bank include:
- Account Problems: These complaints come in a variety of forms, including mysteriously frozen accounts, phantom charges, and fraudulent accounts.
- Fees: Business owners complained about being charged punishing late fees and jacked up interest rates if they missed a payment.
- Scandal-Prone: Citi has been part of a number of major legal scandals recently. These include price-fixing, illegal credit card practices, hedge fund fraud, and overcharging customers.
Positive Reviews & Testimonials
Are things sounding grim? Rest assured, there are still reasons to consider Citi for your business loan if you qualify:
- Good Rates: Citi can offer lower rates than you’ll find with alternative lenders.
- Physical Presence: If you prefer to see a human face when you do your banking, Citi’s large number of branches make it very easy to do business the old-fashioned way.
- Range Of Products: Citi can serve as a one-stop shop for business finance due to its deep pockets and depth of offerings.
Citibank’s size and wealth mean it can, at least in theory, offer businesses excellent rates on loans. Qualifying for those rates can be challenging, however—particularly if you don’t have a Citi branch near you.
Compared to its competitors, even to other big banks, Citibank is an opaque lender, disclosing very little about its business lending products up front. Combined with lingering customer service and legal issues, this bank does not present the most friendly face to prospective borrowers.
Looking for a loan or line of credit and want an alternative to Citibank? To evaluate multiple low-interest lenders at once, it’s a good idea to use a free loan matchmaking service, often called a “loan aggregator.”