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Assuming that you are one of many small businesses that is either starting up, lacking in your credit score, or is in need of expanding, you could probably use a few small business loan tips to help get your business sailing smoothly.

First, you want to be sure that you have created a separate entity for your small business. This will require the long process of getting an EIN number, creating a corporation or LLC for your business, setting up a separate bank account and telephone line for the business, and registering the business with one or more of the business credit reporting agencies. This will ensure that your business credit remains separated from your personal credit, and doesn’t cause any damage should things go awry.

Large banks are typically poor places to go to for a start-up loan. Small banks will be more likely to accommodate you, as will credit unions and independent venture capitalists. Chances are, you will have little difficulty finding access to small loans, but the large loans that your business needs will probably be out of arms’ reach if you have poor credit or a lack of business experience. In this situation, it is best to seek out multiple lenders all at once rather than look for a single, large loan. Shopping for multiple lenders is not only easier, it is also much safer for your credit score, as all pulls on your credit score within a period of two weeks will be counted effectively as one, and will not adversely affect it.

Another excellent resource to use is the Small Business Administration. The SBA is a federal program that guarantees loans for a number of situations, including minorities, start-up businesses, certain expansions, and disaster relief. The SBA offers a number of programs that change over time, and can be very useful when looking for credit lines.

For more small business loan tips, you may want to consult the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), which is a division of the department of Commerce that aids minorities and the disadvantaged in finding the financing that they need, or click any one of the sponsors on this page.

This Business article was written by Mark Karavan on 11/13/2009