Celtic Bank Blog

SEP
18

Car Wash Financing

Car Wash Financing
Entrepreneurs who owned and operated car washes during the Great Recession were hit especially hard.  Consumers stopped spending and lenders tightened their belts.  Now that the Great Recession is over, the tables have finally turned.  Consumer spending is up, and banks are vigorously competing to provide car wash financing to borrowers who are a good fit for an SBA loan.  If you are a car wash owner, now is the best time since 2007 to look into financing options for your business! To learn more about car wash financing, visit:   http://www.carwashmag.com/issues/current-issue-list/issue-single-view/update-car-wash-financing/46668b452e1f2a182dcd35414d790a81.html
SEP
09

5 Ways Your Small Business Can Be More Green Friendly

5 Ways Your Small Business Can Be More Green Friendly
Due to the mass amounts of environmentally friendly products exploding on the marketplace today it should come as no surprise that environmentally friendly businesses are flourishing at a time when environmental stewardship is increasingly drastically across all different spectrums including education, agriculture and the economy. Becoming “Green Friendly” is now more of a demand rather than a suggestion and more and more consumers are making the switch to products that do not harm our earth. So as your customers demand safer environmental practices, capitalize on it by finding your eco-friendly niche, getting international certification from an Eco-label program and create a solid partnership between your business and the environment! Here are 5 Ways you can make your business practices more eco-friendly: Create A Sustainability Impact Report A Sustainability Impact Report can help you gain trust from your environmentally conscious customers because it requires you to measure, assess and report your sustainability performance. Choose Better Suppliers To be a green friendly business it is imperative that you also use suppliers and vendors that are also environmentally conscious. You should be holding all of your vendors to the same standard as you are holding your own business to. Use Green Packaging Use...
SEP
05

Small Business Lending Up 7 Percent In July Alone

Small Business Lending Up 7 Percent In July Alone
Although small business lending was reportedly decreasing in June, July saw a 7 percent increase in the small business-lending index by PayNet. Not only was lending up, but borrowing also increased by ten percent compared to July of 2013. Although lending and borrowing are trending up, small businesses are hiring less. It seems as if although growth seems imminent for small business owners, they are still managing their cash flow conservatively; most noticeably by their lack of payroll expansion.  In fact the Intuit Hiring Index which was released this week noted that no new jobs where added by small businesses in the United States at all in August. What these recent statistics suggest about the state of small business in the United States is that it is seeing an area of growth and expansion.
SEP
02

When Is the Best Time To Borrow?

When Is the Best Time To Borrow?
In recent months, there has been a surge in positive media surrounding the world of lending, especially when it comes to small business loans.  When it comes to borrowing, timing is a huge factor.  Phrases such as “now is the right time to borrow” or “now is the right time to buy,” are continually tossed around, even in the midst of fluctuating markets.  While it is true that loans made to small businesses have steadily increased since the 2008 recession, what does this really mean to prospective borrowers? For consumer and business owners alike, the best time to borrow money is when interest rates are low and the economy is at a high. Lower interest rates mean lower costs to the borrower. A stronger economy often leads to relaxed lending program regulations, making it easier for consumers and business owners to qualify for loans. Fortunately, our nation is currently experiencing this trend. If you previously applied for a loan but were denied, now is an ideal time to reapply! As the economy continues to grow, you are more likely to be approved for a loan and perhaps for even a larger amount than what you originally applied for. While banks have...
AUG
27

How Much Money Are Your Unhappy Employee’s Costing You?

How Much Money Are Your Unhappy Employee’s Costing You?
Happy employees not only make your workspace a more cohesive and better area to be, but they also contribute better and more to a business’ profitability. A big part of having happy employees is having a happy open company culture, which pushes everyone to work better with others, be more creative and innovative, learn faster and make better decisions. Unhappy employees however lose money for your company and drag your entire environment down. In fact in the Gallup 2013 Report on the State of the Global Workplace , it was reported that actively disengaged and unengaged employees do not put any time, effort, energy or passion into their work and can in fact undermine what engaged workers are achieving. What is more disturbing than the fact that unengaged employees can cause a massive decrease in productivity and probability at your business is the amount of unengaged workers in the workforce, it is estimated that 70 percent of United States workers are disengaged! Overall this means that less than half of the working population is engaged in their job; this makes it harder for employees to work together and harder for businesses to run themselves effectively. Gallup has said that in...
AUG
01

Federal Contracts Benefitting Minority and Disadvantaged Businesses

Federal Contracts Benefitting Minority and Disadvantaged Businesses
Small business growth in the United States is at an all-time high and the rate of federal contracts benefiting minority and disadvantaged businesses  is growing.  During the 2013-2014 fiscal years, The Small Business Administration (SBA) worked hard to make up for the lack of federal contracts that these types of businesses were awarded in the past. The SBA recently released a scorecard to illustrate the government’s efforts to meet 2013 goals for awarding federal contacts to small businesses.   The scorecard breaks the data down by small business, women-owned small business, small disadvantaged business, service disabled veteran-owned small business and HUBZone (Historically Underutilized Business Zones). According to the scorecard, the federal government exceeded the 2013 goal of 23% for awarding federal contracts to small business, finishing at 23.39%, a one percent improvement over 2012 results. During 2013, $83.1 billion federal contracting dollars were awarded to small businesses.   Federal contracts awarded to women-owned businesses felt short of the 2013 goal, but saw an improvement compared to 2012 results.   Federal contracts awarded to small disadvantaged businesses and service disabled veteran owned small businesses reached and exceeded 2013 goals. However, federal contracts awarded to HUBZone fell short of the 2013 goal,...
JUL
31

Borrowing Mistakes That Can Crush Your Business

Borrowing Mistakes That Can Crush Your Business
Small business lending is on the rise, and along with it, alternative lenders are popping up everywhere! Merchant Cash Advances have become the new loan shark. Although the idea of a merchant cash advance seems simple, the way advances are structured, depending on the lender, often leaves a borrower with too little time or resources to pay the advance off, resulting in crippling debt. Merchant cash advances are easy to get, which makes them appealing, but they are difficult to pay off due to the short repayment terms and high interest rates, which continue to rise based on a borrower’s ability to repay. This creates a cycle of borrowing that eventually drains the business’s cash flow and leads to the death of yet another small business. Small business owners have so many options these days when it comes to financing. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is guaranteeing more small business loans than ever before, making traditional lenders more eager to lend. Loan programs such as the SBA 7(a) and the Celtic Express Loan Program have been improved upon to make the process faster and easier. Before making a financing decision, do some research and consider all of your options...
JUL
22

Why Choosing The RIGHT Lender and Business Development Officer Matters

Why Choosing The RIGHT Lender and Business Development Officer Matters
By:  Christy Lester, SVP - SBA Lending at Celtic Bank Brokers or borrowers often say the same thing during an initial phone call, “I’ve been trying to get my SBA loan closed for months”, or, “I’ve heard that it is a really long and difficult process to get a SBA loan approved and closed”.  My response is always the same, “You have been working with the wrong lender!” An SBA loan should not be any harder to get approved and closed than a conventional loan.  The key is working with a lender who has years of experience and is focused on SBA lending!  A specialized SBA Business Development Officer (BDO) can walk a borrower or broker thru the complete process, anticipate any road blocks and navigate around them.   It is important to find a BDO that has experience in all phases of the SBA lending process, not just sales.  Having prior experience as a loan processor or underwriter gives a BDO the necessary skills to ask questions at the beginning of the process to help avoid potential issues down the road. The most important step in the process is at the beginning, when the borrower and lender spend time...
JUL
08

3 Ways To Make A Good Impression At Meetings

3 Ways To Make A Good Impression At Meetings
In corporate America, the impression you leave during meetings has the power to make or break your career. Whether you are interviewing for a job, meeting to discuss partnership possibilities, making a sales call, or meeting with the boss, a few simple tips can help you stand out and put your career into high speed. Speak Up and Ask Questions.  The best way to get noticed is to speak up! Ask challenging questions to grab everyone’s attention and get them thinking. Keep It Simple but Interesting.   Clearly convey your thoughts and ideas while showing that you are passionate about your work. People will appreciate you more when they see you actually care about what you do. If you represent your company with passion, you will earn the respect of others and be easily remembered. Use Graphics and Animation.  Leave a positive impression by being graphic and animated about your ideas. Painting a picture for your clients or coworkers will help them see and understand your vision better. The impressions you make during meetings can steer your career in many directions. Remember to walk into every meeting with confidence, and the conviction that your ideas and passion will leave a...