Funding Circle is a peer-to-peer lender that specializes in business loans and offers loans up to $500,000, repayment terms up to five years, and starting rates of 11.97%. Funding Circle competitors distinguish themselves by offering lower starting rates, longer repayment terms, easier to meet minimum qualifications, and quicker funding speeds.
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Funding Circle Business Loans vs Top Competitors
Well-qualified borrowers needing low rates and long repayment terms on business loans
(Best Overall Competitor) Businesses wanting a single application for Funding Circle and Opportunity Fund
Veteran-owned businesses wanting affordable peer-to-peer business loans
Startup business owners needing peer-to-peer personal loans for business funding
Businesses needing a term loan with an option to customize their repayment terms
Prime borrowers wanting low starting rates and long repayment terms from an alternative lender
Business owners with less than perfect credit needing a term loan
Businesses needing SBA loans with quick turn around and an online application
Business owners with low credit scores that don’t have other funding options
What Peer-to-Peer Lending Is
Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending is a financing model that bypasses traditional financial institutions to match borrowers and lenders. On P2P lending platforms, investors fill funding requests that business owners make, creating the opportunity for lower rates and better repayment terms. When borrowers make payments, these investors earn a return.
Borrowing from P2P lenders can be a good option for businesses wanting a hybrid between an online and traditional business loan. A P2P business loan has a convenient online application, and rates are typically lower than what online business lenders charge, without the hassle of repeat bank visits. Well-qualified business owners wanting quick funding, relatively low rates, and long repayment terms will find the P2P business loans meet their needs.
Funding Circle vs Top Funding Circle Competitors
Maximum Repayment Term
Minimum Credit Score
Speed of Funding
11.97% to 29.98%
$25,000 to $500,000
9.77% to 35.98%
Up to $500,000
7.19% to 29.9%
$5,000 to $250,000
6.98% to 35.99%
$2,000 to $40,000
One to three days
12% to 136%
$5,000 to $500,000
One to three days
10% to 100%
$5,000 to $500,000
One to three days
10% to 136%
$5,000 to $500,000
One to three days
7.5% to 11%
$30,000 to $350,000
Up to 30 days
18% to 230%
$5,000 to $1,000,000
One to three days
What Funding Circle Offers
Funding Circle offers small businesses a peer-to-peer loan up to $500,000 with terms up to five years. To qualify for working capital funding, business owners need a 620 or higher personal credit score and two or more years in business. APRs range from 11.97% to 29.98% and funding takes at least five days.
Who Funding Circle Business Loans Are Right For
Funding Circle business loans are a great solution for well-established small businesses with creditworthy owners. This is because of its high minimum qualifications for funding. It only offers lump sum advances, so it’s best for businesses financing large projects wanting up to five years to repay the debt.
Funding Circle business loans are best for:
- Business owners with strong personal credit: To qualify, business owners need a minimum credit score of 620. Business owners with lower score should consider working with a Funding Circle competitor instead.
- Established businesses needing financing: Applicants need at least two years in business to qualify for funding so having established revenues can help businesses get funded.
- Businesses needing a lump sum of capital for a large project: It offers an online business loan advanced as a lump sum, rather than a business line of credit.
- Companies needing long-term financing for up to five years: Most fast business loans don’t have repayment terms longer than three years, but Funding Circle offers terms as long as five years.
Business owners with lower personal credit scores or less established businesses will need to work with a Funding Circle competitor. Many of the best small business loans offer the same amount of funding with lower minimum qualifications. However, expect higher average rates and shorter repayment terms with these other options.
Funding Circle Rates
Every loan includes a fee of 3.49% to 6.99%, which is high compared to Funding Circle competitors. It also takes the origination fee out of the loan amount; however, the combined interest rate and origination fee results in a low APR. For every $10,000 a business borrows, the daily interest costs will be between $3.25 and $8.21.
Funding Circle Terms
Funding Circle stands out by offering both long repayment terms and large loan amounts. It also requires monthly payments, which is less frequent than some Funding Circle competitors that require daily or weekly payments. It also has minimum funding amounts of $25,000 and funding loans in five days or longer. Businesses needing smaller loans or quicker funding should consider an alternative.
Funding Circle Requirements
Minimum qualifications are high in peer-to-peer lending, and some businesses may find them prohibitive. Businesses can’t qualify for Funding Circle until at least two years of operations and personal credit scores of business owners must be at least 620 to get funding. There is no annual revenue requirement, but Funding Circle lending statistics point to high averages for approved borrowers.
Across the $10 billion in loans it originated, the average qualifying business has significantly higher qualifications. The average time in business is 11 years, with annual sales in excess of $1.4 million, and 12 employees. This doesn’t mean that smaller and newer businesses can’t qualify, however, it’s important to keep these figures in mind when applying.
What Funding Circle Is Missing
Funding Circle offers substantial funding with long repayment terms to qualifying businesses. However, it takes at least five days to get funding and the personal credit score requirements are high. Business owners unsure if they will qualify can apply with LendingClub instead.
Funding Circle Reviews
Funding Circle reviews are positive on our site and around the web. Positive reviews appreciated the responsive customer service team and clear loan terms. Some negative reviews mentioned that requirements were too stringent and that the application process could be quicker.
How to Get a Funding Circle Business Loan
Funding Circle offers peer-to-peer business loans up to $500,000 for small businesses. Repayment terms last up to five years and the starting APR is 11.97% for the most qualified business owners. The application takes about 30 minutes to complete, approval takes one to two days, and Funding Circle can transfer funds the same week.
The top Funding Circle competitors include:
LendingClub: Best Overall Funding Circle Competitor for Small Businesses
LendingClub doesn’t lend directly to small businesses but partners with Funding Circle and Opportunity Fund to offer business loans. Business owners can qualify online with less time in business and a lower credit score than Funding Circle requires. Rates start at 9.77% and repayment terms extend up to five years.
LendingClub rates combine the offers of Funding Circle and Opportunity Fund, the two lenders it partners with to service loans. While these loan offerings are similar, sometimes Opportunity Fund can provide lower rates for qualified borrowers and offer loans at higher rates than Funding Circle for less-qualified borrowers. For a $10,000 loan, the daily interest cost business owners can expect is $2.67 to $9.85.
The terms for a LendingClub loan are the same as Funding Circle because it funds the loans. Applicants can expect to get larger loans and longer repayment terms if they meet higher qualification requirements. However, applying with Lending Club has the added advantage of lower overall minimum qualifications.
LendingClub qualifications are lower in most respects than those required for Funding Circle. A business has to be operating half as long and the credit score of the owner can be a little lower at 600 points. However, there is a gross annual business revenue requirement of $50,000 for smaller loans offers by Opportunity Fund.
What LendingClub Is Missing
LendingClub is a great alternative to Funding Circle because businesses can still get its loans and may qualify for lower rates or with lower qualifications for Opportunity Fund. However, LendingClub no longer offers its own business loan, so businesses wanting a different peer-to-peer lender should consider StreetShares instead.
LendingClub reviews are positive on our site and around the web. Although it no longer offers a business loan, positive reviews noted that its application process is simple. Some negative reviews came from borrowers unable to qualify for funding, but LendingClub discloses its minimum qualifications on its website.
How to Apply with LendingClub
Applying with LendingClub takes less than 30 minutes and applicants can qualify for loans from Opportunity Fund or Funding Circle. Businesses can receive up to $500,000 with starting APRs of 9.77% and repayment terms up to five years. After applying, LendingClub could get funding deposited into the business’s bank account in as little as five days.
StreetShares: Best Peer-to-peer Term Loan for Veteran-owned Small Businesses
StreetShares offers peer-to-peer loans to veteran-owned businesses with low starting rates and simple minimum qualifications. Businesses can qualify for loans up to $250,000 with starting rates of 7.19% and repayment terms up to three years. Smaller businesses can qualify with its $25,000 annual revenue requirement, lower than most Funding Circle competitors.
StreetShares business loan rates include:
- Expected APR: 7.19% to 29.9%
- Origination fee: 2.95% to 4.95%
- Prepayment penalty: None
StreetShares peer-to-peer loans have a similar APR to Lending Club, but it has lower overall origination fees. Based on the APR a $10,000 loan with StreetShares will have daily interest costs of $1.95 to $8.20, making it affordable for most small businesses. Also like most of the other lenders we reviewed it doesn’t assess penalties for early repayment.
StreetShares business loan terms include:
- Loan amount: $2,000 to $250,000
- Loan term: Three months to three years
- Repayment schedule: Weekly
- Funding speed: At least three days
StreetShares offers less funding than Funding Circle, with loan amounts up to $250,000. However, it offers smaller loans of $2,000 making it great for micro-businesses that only need a small amount of funding. Also, business owners will need to make more frequent weekly payments, which some business owners find advantageous for managing payments.
StreetShares business loan qualifications include:
- Time in business: At least one year
- Credit score: At least 600
- Gross annual revenues: $25,000
StreetShares has easier-to-meet qualifications than Funding Circle, and a lower minimum revenue requirement than LendingClub. This makes it accessible to smaller businesses that may otherwise struggle to get financing. However, its minimum credit score of at least 600 may still make it inaccessible to some borrowers that will need to improve their score before applying.
What StreetShares Is Missing
StreetShares peer-to-peer lending options include low starting rates and easy to meet qualifications. However, it only offers a loan size up to $250,000 and has a high credit score requirement. For a larger loan up to $500,000 and a minimum credit score of 550, consider applying with LoanBuilder instead.
StreetShares reviews are positive on our site and around the web. Positive StreetShares reviews noted its low rates and were happy with their financing offers. Some negative reviews came from small business owners that did not understand the terms of their loan and did not expect required weekly payments.
How to Apply with StreetShares
StreetShares offers small businesses loans up to $250,000 with starting rates of 7.19% for the most qualified borrowers. Business owners can get repayment terms as long as three years and can qualify with as little as $25,000 in annual revenue. Applicants can complete the entire process in a few minutes and receive funding in as little as three days.
Prosper: Best Peer-to-peer Personal Loan for Startup Businesses
Prosper personal loans are an option for startup businesses to fund operations because it doesn’t consider business qualifications. Rates start low at 6.95% like other peer-to-peer lenders with repayment terms up to five years. However, loan amounts are small, up to $40,000, and it requires a credit score of at least 640, higher than other Funding Circle competitors.
Prosper business loan rates include:
- APR: 6.95% to 35.99%
- Origination fee: 2.4% to 5%
- Prepayment penalty: None
- Check processing fee: $5, or 5% of the payment amount, whichever is less (no fee for ACH payment)
Prosper personal peer-to-peer loans are an affordable startup funding option for business owners unable to qualify for a business loan. Like StreetShares, it charges an origination fee. A $10,000 loan with Prosper carries daily interest costs of $1.90 to $9.85, making it an affordable personal loan for business.
Prosper business loan terms include:
- Loan amount: $2,000 to $40,000
- Repayment term: Three or five years
- Funding speed: Within three days
Prosper only offers personal loans, so the loan amounts are from $2,000 to $40,000. While this may not be enough for some businesses, startups often need just a little funding to get going. One reason Prosper made it on our list is its long repayment terms, giving borrowers the flexibility of making smaller payments on their startup financing.
Prosper business loan qualifications include:
- Credit score: At least 640
- U.S. citizenship: Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident
- Age: Must be at least 18 years old
- Bank account: Must have a verifiable bank account
- Debt-to-income: Below 50%
Applicants need a higher credit score to qualify for this Funding Circle competitor; but, because it’s a personal loan, Prosper does not consider the financial position of the business. Business owners must also have a debt-to-income ratio below 50%, which they can calculate by dividing their monthly debt payments by their gross monthly income.
What Prosper Is Missing
Prosper specializes in peer-to-peer lending for individuals and startup founders can use its loans to fund their businesses. However, it only offers a small amount of funding up to $40,000 and has a high personal credit score requirement. We didn’t feature other personal loans for business funding in this guide, but every other Funding Circle competitor can offer more funding.
Prosper reviews are positive around the web and come from borrowers happy to receive funding and appreciated how helpful its customer service team was. Some negative reviews came from users that received an approval decision from Prosper for less funding than they requested.
How to Apply with Prosper
Founders can apply for a Prosper personal loan online in minutes and receive up to $40,000 in funding. There are no business requirements, repayment terms up to five years, and low starting rates of 6.95%. With a personal credit score of 640 or higher, business owners can get funding in one to three days.
LoanBuilder: Best Business Loan With Customizable Repayment Terms
LoanBuilder online business loans offer the same amount of funding as Funding Circle with the added flexibility of selecting a repayment term. Businesses can customize their loan from 13 to 52 weeks, with a corresponding rate as low as 2.9% of the loan amount. LoanBuilder also offers businesses next day funding and low minimum qualifications.
LoanBuilder is the first lender on our list of top Funding Circle competitors that doesn’t offer a peer-to-peer business loan. For borrowers this means there is no origination fee, but the APR range is much larger. Based on the LoanBuilder APR, businesses can expect daily interest costs from $3.25 to $37.25 for every $10,000 they borrow.
LoanBuilder has the same maximum loan amount as Funding Circle and the same minimum loan as StreetShares. This gives borrowers a great deal of flexibility in the loan amount they need. LoanBuilder is also unique because it offers borrowers an option to select their loan terms, from 13 to 52 weeks letting them customize the repayment term to better match their expected cash flows.
LoanBuilder also has lower personal credit score qualifications than every peer-to-peer lending company we examined, making it an option for business owners with lower credit scores. It also allows a business to qualify after nine months of operations and with low minimum annual revenue of $42,000 or more. This makes LoanBuilder a more accessible financing option for most small businesses.
What LoanBuilder Is Missing
LoanBuilder financing offers borrowers a compelling alternative to peer-to-peer lending with its flexible repayment terms and low minimum qualifications. However, it only offers repayment terms up to 52 weeks, making it less flexible for long-term projects. For an equally large alternative business loan with longer repayment terms, consider applying with OnDeck instead.
LoanBuilder reviews are positive on our site and around the web. Positive reviews came from business owners happy to receive funding after completing a simple application process. Some negative reviews came from users that did not receive approval for funding or could not get as much financing as they needed.
How to Apply with LoanBuilder
Business owners can complete a LoanBuilder application online in less than 10 minutes without leaving the office. It offers funding up to $500,000 with flexible repayment terms from 13 to 52 weeks. The starting APR is 12% and a business can get approved the same day and have the money ready to spend the next morning.
OnDeck: Best Online Business Loan for Prime Borrowers
OnDeck is the best option for prime credit borrowers wanting next day funding, with the low rates of peer-to-peer lending. Rates start at 9% on loans up to $500,000 with repayment terms up to three years. The minimum qualifications are also lower than most Funding Circle competitors.
OnDeck offers one of the lowest rates for prime borrowers, without the wait that peer-to-peer lending options require. There is also an origination fee with OnDeck, which it takes out of the loan amount, similar to Funding Circle. Based on the APR range, businesses can expect daily interest costs of $2.75 to $27.40 for every $10,000 they borrow with OnDeck.
OnDeck offers the same maximum funding as LoanBuilder and most of the other peer-to-peer lending solutions on our list. However, it also offers repayment terms up to three years, which is common for peer-to-peer loans but is rare among even the best alternative lenders. Businesses will need to make daily or weekly payments, which is a drawback if they need less-frequent payments.
The minimum requirements for OnDeck are easier to meet than Funding Circle but more demanding than LoanBuilder. In particular, the minimum annual revenue requirement is almost twice as high as LoanBuilder making it tougher to access for smaller or newer businesses that aren’t generating substantial revenue yet.
What OnDeck Is Missing
OnDeck offers prime borrowers low rates on a business loan for up to three years with fast funding speeds. However, it has high minimum requirements and doesn’t offer repayment terms as long as some other Funding Circle competitors. For lower minimum qualifications business owners should consider LoanBuilder, and for the longest terms SmartBiz is a better competitor.
OnDeck reviews are positive on our site and around the web. Most positive reviews came from users happy with the quick application process and the helpfulness of OnDeck’s customer service team. Some negative reviews came from users that received higher-than-expected interest rates, however, OnDeck discloses the rate and payments businesses need to make in its funding offer.
How to Apply with OnDeck
An OnDeck application takes minutes to complete online and produces an approval decision the same day. Business owners can qualify to borrow up to $500,000 with starting rates of 9% and repayment terms as long as three years. Many small businesses can qualify for funding with OnDeck and have money available to them the next day.
National Funding: Best Fair Credit Score Term Loan
National Funding offers a similar business loan to LoanBuilder and OnDeck, but it has a lower credit score requirement of 500 making it a great loan for business owners with fair credit. The online application takes minutes and rates start as low as 8% with funding up to $500,000 available the next day.
National Funding Rates
National Funding offers small businesses financing options with easy to meet minimum requirements for most business owners. However, it charges an origination fee like OnDeck. Its rates are like the ones charged by LoanBuilder and for most businesses, this means a $10,000 loan from National Funding will carry daily interest costs between $2.75 and $37.25.
National Funding Terms
Businesses can qualify for the same amount of capital with National Funding as they can with LoanBuilder and OnDeck. However, the business will have up to one year to repay the loan, making this a good option for short-term projects, rather than longer projects like renovations that require years to repay.
National Funding Qualifications
A standout feature of National Funding is its low personal credit score requirements. With at least $100,000 in annual revenue and a year in business, business owners could qualify for both OnDeck and National Funding. However, the business owners personal credit score can be 100 points lower than the minimum for OnDeck, making this a great option for business owners needing a bad credit business loan.
What National Funding Is Missing
National Funding offers a great financing option for small business owners that are having difficulty qualifying for peer-to-peer lending alternatives because of a low personal credit score. However, its rates are high and it only has repayment terms up to one year. Well-qualified business owners wanting the lowest rates, should apply with OnDeck instead.
National Funding Reviews
National Funding reviews are a mix of negative and positive feedback from borrowers on our site and around the web. Positive reviews came from users that appreciated getting funded after being denied by other alternative lenders. Some negative reviews noted that its rates were higher-than-expected, but National Funding discloses its rates when it approves a business for funding.
How to Apply with National Funding
National Funding has a quick online application that takes minutes to complete. Businesses can get approved to borrow up to $500,000 with a starting APR of 10% and repayment terms up to one year. After the applicant accepts a funding offer, National Funding can have the money transferred the next day.
SmartBiz: Best Online SBA Loan With Quick Funding
SmartBiz is a great option for business owners wanting an SBA loan in as little as 30 days with starting rates of 7.5%. Business owners need a personal credit score of 650 and at least two years in business to borrow up to $350,000 with repayment terms up to 10 years.
SmartBiz offers the lowest overall rates and smallest APR range among all the Funding Circle competitors. It’s able to do this with a partial guarantee from the Small Business Administration (SBA). This makes these loans the most affordable option for small businesses, with every $10,000 borrowed costing between $2.05 and $3.00 in daily interest.
The loan amounts with SmartBiz are smaller than most other lenders, and like the peer-to-peer lending options from Funding Circle, businesses are responsible for monthly payments. SmartBiz also offers the longest repayment terms up to 10 years. However, it takes 30 days to get funding, so business owners needing capital quickly should explore other options.
Qualifying for an SBA loan from SmartBiz is more difficult than Funding Circle because it has a higher personal credit score requirement of 650. The major benefit of applying for an SBA loan is that new businesses can also qualify, however, for the expedited process offered by SmartBiz, the businesses must be operational for at least two years.
What SmartBiz Is Missing
SmartBiz has the longest repayment terms and lowest rates that small business owners can qualify for online. However, it takes up to 30 days to provide funding, which is still quick compared to most SBA loans that take up to 90 days. For a quick business loan with long repayment terms from a Funding Circle competitor, consider applying with OnDeck instead.
SmartBiz reviews are positive on our site and around the web. Most positive reviews expressed their appreciation of the help they received from SmartBiz and that they were glad to get an SBA loan. The negative reviews came from users that found the online application more complicated, but this has more to do with SBA requirements than SmartBiz.
How to Apply with SmartBiz
Business owners can complete a SmartBiz online application in under an hour. Upon approval they can borrow up to $350,000 with repayment terms up to 10 years and low starting rates of 7.5%. The entire process can take up to 30 days, but that investment can set a business up for success.
Cashbloom: Best Business Loan for Low Credit Borrowers
Cashbloom is an option for business owners whose credit scores are preventing them from getting funding. It charges a rate of 1.2 to 1.5 times the loan amount and offers funding up to $1,000,000. However, it requires daily payments, at least $120,000 in annual revenue to qualify, and can be very expensive.
Cashbloom calculates loan repayments as a multiple of the loan amount. At the low end, with 24-month repayment terms that results in an 18% APR for borrowers. However, at the highest rates and shortest terms, this APR can be as high as 230%. This means that a Cashbloom loan has an effective daily interest cost between $4.95 and $63.00 for every $10,000 businesses borrow.
Cashbloom offers a large amount of capital compared to most Funding Circle competitors. It also offers repayment terms up to 24 months but business owners are responsible for more frequent daily payments, which makes it easier to manage but more likely to strain business cash flow.
Cashbloom offers borrowers no stated minimum credit score requirement for its bad credit business loan. However, businesses will need at least $120,000 in annual revenue, making this option inaccessible to smaller companies. Business owners can also qualify after only three months of operations, which is lower than other lenders.
What Cashbloom Is Missing
Cashbloom business loans offer small business owners with low personal credit scores a chance to qualify for funding even if other lenders have turned them down. However, the overall costs are expensive, with APRs potentially exceeding 200%. We recommend applying with other lenders like National Funding before Cashbloom.
Cashbloom reviews around the web are positive and noted its great service and customer experience. Many positive reviews noted the courteous customer service team and a quick application process. Some negative reviews noted that rates were higher than expected, however, many of these reviews came from customers who also had trouble getting financing elsewhere.
How to Apply with Cashbloom
Cashbloom business loans offer funding up to $1 million with terms as long as two years. There is no stated minimum credit score to qualify and APR’s start as low as 20%. Although applicants must make daily payments, it’s a great way to get funded in two business days after completing a quick online application.
Pros and Cons of Funding Circle
Funding Circle business loans offer some of the lowest rates to borrowers among online business loans. They also have longer repayment terms and less frequent payments than most competitors in the alternative lending industry. However, it can take longer to provide funding and has higher minimum requirements making it less accessible than some other options.
Pros of Funding Circle
- Low starting rates on online business loans: With rates as low as 11.97% on an online business loan it has similar rates to some traditional financing options.
- Longer repayment terms than most alternative lenders: By receiving repayment terms as long as five years, business owners can take their time building their business and paying back debt. This allows business owners to fund long-term projects without immediate returns.
- Less frequent payments than more competitors: Borrowers make monthly payments on its business loans, giving them added flexibility when budgeting and managing cash flow.
Cons of Funding Circle
- Slower funding speeds than Funding Circle competitors: Although it offers a fast business loan compared to traditional lenders, it doesn’t offer funding the next business day. For businesses needing faster capital, another option may be a better choice.
- Higher minimum credit score and time in business qualifications: Business owners with a credit score below 620 won’t be able to qualify for a loan. This makes it as restrictive as some traditional lenders and leaves certain business owners without an opportunity to get funding from it.
Funding Circle Business Loans Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How does Funding Circle work?
Funding Circle is a peer-to-peer lender that lets individual investors fund business loans on its platform. After a business owner submits a qualifying request, individual investors offer funding to the business. A single investor or hundreds of individuals fund each business loan on the platform.
How does Funding Circle make its money?
Funding Circle makes money on the origination fees that it charges borrowers. It doesn’t charge investors any fees, and it takes the origination fee out of the loan amount at origination. It doesn’t charge any additional brokerage or transaction fees and distributes the interest paid on the loan to investors.
Does Funding Circle require personal guarantees?
Funding Circle states on its website that business owners that refuse to provide a personal guarantee will not be eligible for funding on its platform. A personal guarantee helps reduce the overall risk of the loans and make individual investors more comfortable providing funding. This is typical for most online and traditional business loans.
Funding Circle business loans offer borrowers a flexible peer-to-peer financing option with low overall rates and long repayment terms. Business owners should consider alternatives to Funding Circle if they want lower minimum qualifications, customized repayment terms, or faster funding.