When a business opens its doors for the first time, it uses financing it received from a variety of sources. As a business grows, funding becomes necessary for: Ongoing operations; Launching new products; Expanding the business; Maintaining inventory. If you are an entrepreneur who is just getting started with your business, then you will need to know Have An Updated Business Plan Any finance company is going to need to see a general outline of what your business does and what your plans are for future growth. When you start your business, you should have created an initial business plan that you follow when you make all important decisions. That business plan should also be updated at least once per quarter. When it is time to apply for funding, you will submit a copy of your business plan as part of the application process. Develop A Detailed Reason For Needing Funding When you apply for financing, the lender is going to need to know why you need the money. You will need to outline, is detailed specifics, why you need the money and what you intend to do with it. Include such details as: How much money you are looking for; The project you will be spending the money on; The expected return on the investment; The specific aspects of the project that you will need the lender to finance. Your application for funding will be passed to several people and you will not always be there to give a personal presentation to each individual. That is why this report needs to be extremely detailed and specific. Shop For The Best Lender The decision for a lender to fund your business is an important one for you and the lender. The lender wants your business just as much as you need the funding. That is why you should always take the time to shop for a lender that will give you the best deal. A proactive business owner is constantly networking with financial professionals to give themselves options when it comes time to fund a project. Spend your time constantly building your network of active financial contacts and then work that network to get the best possible deal. Get The Deal In Writing In some ways, getting business financing can be a lot like buying a used car. The lender will give you a lot of details about their offer before you sign the agreement, but then some last-minute fees can slip into the lending agreement before you sign it. If you don’t take the time to read the finance agreement, then you may wind up taking on fees that you never expected. Negotiate with each lender and get each financing offer in writing so that you can compare them. If you feel more comfortable having a contract attorney look the offers over, then make that investment and feel confident in the decision that you make. Funding your business from outside sources will be an ongoing process. In order to get the most out of each financing agreement, you need to follow the proper steps to get financing and then pay close attention to each proposal that you receive. Maintain a network of active lenders that you can call on when you need funding and you are sure to get the best deal possible. Images: ”Road sign to business loan/ Shutterstock.com“ __________________________________________________________________________________ Connect with Tweak Your Biz: Would you like to write for Tweak Your Biz? Tweak Your Biz is an international, business advice community and online publication. Today it is read by over 140,000 business people each month (unique visitors, Google Analytics, December, 2013). See our review of 2013 for more information. An outstanding title can increase tweets, Facebook Likes, and visitor traffic by 50% or more. Generate great titles for your articles and blog posts with the Tweak Your Biz Title Generator.