Welcome to Funding Options

We've been chosen by the government-owned British Business Bank to help businesses like yours find finance. Our highly-rated service scans the market to find the options that best suit your needs. It takes minutes, there's no obligation and it's easy to use.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Funding Options is the UK’s leading business finance marketplace, matching businesses to more than 50 specialist lenders across the whole spectrum of business funding. Our mission is to make business finance easy, and help UK businesses access the finance that’s right for them.

Funding Options has been chosen by the government's British Business Bank (acting on behalf of HM Treasury) to be one of the Government designated finance platforms for the Bank Referral Scheme — which means banks are required by law to offer their unsuccessful applications a referral to us. We then help these businesses find finance from dozens of other lenders.

The Funding Options service is free to use, and our aim is to find the right finance for your business, even if it didn’t work out with your bank.

Our customers rate us as “Excellent” on independent review site Trustpilot.

We’re impartial, and our service is no-obligation, so you can be confident you’ll get the best match for your business. We work with over 50 lenders offering dozens of products, so you have access to the full spectrum of business finance — and even if we can’t help, you’ll get a straight answer quickly.

We believe in Treating Customers Fairly, and we’re authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Reference Number 727867).

The Bank Referral Scheme helps businesses who’ve been unsuccessful with the major banks find finance elsewhere.

The Government passed a law* in 2015 which requires banks to offer to refer their unsuccessful applicants to designated finance platforms. These platforms will then help the referred business find another source of business finance. Funding Options is one of these Government-designated finance platforms.

How it works:

If you’re unsuccessful with the bank (which might mean they don’t offer you enough or you don’t like their terms), they have to offer you a referral to a government designated finance platform like us.

You don’t have to accept a referral — it’s completely up to you — and there’s no obligation to take any of your options or offers if you do accept a referral.

Once you’re referred to us, we’ll ask a few simple questions about your business like how much money you need and what it’s for. Then we’ll match you with the lenders most suitable for your situation and requirements, and if you like what you see, we’ll help you through the application process with them.

* Small Business, Enterprise & Employment Act 2015

At Funding Options our mission is to help all businesses get the finance deal that’s right for them. Many of our customers couldn’t get finance through their bank, but secure a deal with another provider by using our service.

Unfortunately, some businesses find it’s just not the right time to borrow money — and although we work with dozens of the UK’s leading lenders, sometimes there are no options available for businesses in particular situations.

The following are common issues that can mean there aren’t any lenders available to help:

  • Short trading history (less than 2 years)
  • Insufficient assets
  • Low turnover/making a loss
  • Pre-existing debt
  • Legal action such as CCJs and winding up orders

Every business is different — if you're not sure, the fastest way to see whether you could be eligible for business finance is to start an application with Funding Options. It only takes a couple of minutes to see your options, and it's completely free and no-obligation.

Yes, non-bank finance is often more expensive — but not always.

Through Funding Options, you can access dozens of the UK’s best lenders, and we’ll always find the lender that suits your requirements best. If cost is an important factor for you, let us know and we’ll do everything we can to get you the best deal.

If you’re unsure, or you just want some indicative quotes, get in touch with our team of Business Finance Specialists and they’ll be happy to help — it’s completely free and no-obligation.

Our fastest case was completed in 1 ½ hours, from initial enquiry to funds in the business's bank account. Our record from enquiry to approval is just 7 minutes.

In our experience, the biggest factor in how quickly you’ll get finance is you. Most lenders will reply quickly (within 24 hours), and your dedicated account manager will work hard to keep things moving. If you’ve got all the documentation ready, it’s often possible to get the deal done within a day or two.

First, you’ll need to give us the key details about your business and what you’re looking for. This will only take a few minutes, and you can do it on our website or give us a call.

Once you’ve decided which lender(s) you’d like us to approach, the application time varies depending on the product and lender you’re dealing with – but it always helps if you’ve prepared in advance!

  • Lenders we work with are much faster than the banks
  • Takes seconds to see your options
  • Offers back within 24–48 hours for most cases
  • Money in account within days if you’ve got documents ready

Types of commercial finance available include bank term loans, invoice finance, hire purchase, equipment leasing, commercial mortgages, property development finance, peer-to-peer lending, revenue loans, and online short-term lenders, as well as government-backed start-up loans and not-for-profit social lenders.

Funding Options does not support equity funding.

Signing up on our website, seeing your funding options, and talking to one of our Business Finance Specialists won’t have an effect on your credit score. We, Funding Options, do not credit check you. However, many of the lenders we work with require a credit check as a normal part of their application process. For this reason, we may ask for your ‘permission to search’ to pass on to a lender in order to speed up your application and make the process as straightforward for you as possible.

You will never be credit checked by a lender we work with unless you have given your explicit consent. Personal credit checks are highly regulated, and you have rights as an individual for your personal data to be protected.

If you have any questions about credit checks and permission to search in relation to your finance enquiry, one of our team will be happy to discuss it further with you.

No, we cannot recommend products and we don’t give financial advice. Our service is all about finding the funding options that your business is eligible for, and matching them with your requirements and requests. We can give you information on each of your options, explain how they work, and clarify exactly what you’d be agreeing to; but you have to make the decision.

Using our service is completely free and no-obligation, and we don't charge our customers a fee. You can use our matching tool, look at your options, or speak to one of our Business Finance Specialists with no strings attached. If you decide to go ahead, and a lender accepts your application for finance, they pay us a commission based on our standard terms. Normally, the cost to our customers is the same as if they’d gone direct to the lender.

We’re happy to disclose further commission details on request – if there’s anything else you’d like to know, feel free to get in touch.

We endeavour to help every UK business, but startups can be a little more challenging to help because they don’t have a track record or any assets to secure lending against. Some lenders won’t lend to startups, but since we work with over 50 finance providers there are often other ways of getting funding – for example, funding equipment directly with an equipment lease, rather than getting a general growth loan.

We also work with Startup Direct, a government-backed organisation that supports startups with finance and mentoring in partnership with the Start Up Loans scheme. Through them, businesses can get loans up to £25,000 – and after a few months of trading they might be eligible to get other types of funding like asset finance and invoice finance.