Understanding Interest on Small Business Loans: Everything You Need to Know

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on interest rates for small business loans. If you’re a business owner, you understand that obtaining financing is an essential part of growing your company. However, securing a loan comes with a cost: interest. This article will give you insight into what interest rates are, how they are calculated, and what factors influence them. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to make informed decisions when shopping for loans and avoid pitfalls. Let’s dive in!

What is Interest Rate?

The interest rate is the percentage of the loan amount that a lender charges a borrower for borrowing money. It is typically expressed as an annual percentage of the loan amount. Interest rates determine how much the borrower will pay in interest over the life of the loan. There are two types of interest rates: fixed and variable.

Fixed Interest Rates

A fixed interest rate remains the same for the life of the loan. It provides certainty and stability, allowing the borrower to know exactly how much they will pay in interest each month. However, fixed interest rates are usually higher than variable interest rates.

Variable Interest Rates

A variable interest rate can change over time, usually based on fluctuations in the market or economy. This type of interest rate can be lower at the beginning of the loan, making it an attractive option for borrowers. However, the rate can change unexpectedly, leaving the borrower with higher payments.

How Are Interest Rates Calculated?

Several factors influence interest rates for small business loans. Understanding these factors can help you negotiate better terms and rates.

Credit Score

The credit score of the borrower is one of the most crucial factors in determining interest rates. A high credit score demonstrates that the borrower is a low-risk borrower and is more likely to repay the loan. As a result, lenders may offer more competitive interest rates to borrowers with high credit scores.

Loan Amount and Duration

Lenders may offer different interest rates depending on the amount and duration of the loan. Small loans may have higher interest rates than larger loans because they carry more risk for the lenders. Similarly, longer loan terms may come with higher interest rates because of the increased risk involved.

Business Plan and Financial Statements

A clear and detailed business plan that outlines how the borrower plans to use the loan and repay it can help secure more favorable interest rates. Lenders also closely examine the financial statements of a business, including its income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement, to evaluate risk.


Lenders may require collateral from the borrower, such as assets or property, to secure the loan. If the borrower defaults on the loan, the lender can seize the collateral to recover its losses. Loans that are secured by collateral may have lower interest rates because they are less risky for lenders.

Small Business Loan Interest Rates by Lender and Type of Loan

Loan Type
Interest Rates
Bank of America
Term Loan
3.49% – 6.75%
Wells Fargo
Line of Credit
7.00% – 22.99%
Funding Circle
Invoice Financing
0.5% – 5.5% per invoice
Short-Term Loan
1.5% – 10%

FAQs on Small Business Loan Interest Rates

1. Can I negotiate interest rates on a small business loan?

Yes, you can negotiate interest rates with lenders. However, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of what you want and the financial health of your business before entering negotiations.

2. What should I do if I think I’m being offered a high-interest rate?

It’s crucial to shop around and compare interest rates from different lenders. You can also work with a financial advisor or consultant to help you review your options and negotiate better rates.

3. How does the lender calculate interest on a small business loan?

Interest is calculated based on the principal amount of the loan, the interest rate, and the loan term. The longer the loan term, the more interest you’ll pay over the life of the loan.

4. Can interest rates on small business loans change over time?

Yes, interest rates can change over time, depending on the type of interest rate you choose.

5. Should I choose a fixed or variable interest rate for my small business loan?

The choice between a fixed or variable interest rate depends on your financial situation and risk tolerance. Fixed interest rates provide stability, while variable interest rates can change over time.

6. What is the average interest rate on a small business loan?

The average interest rate for small business loans varies depending on the lender, type of loan, and borrower’s credit score. As of 2021, interest rates for small business loans can range from 2.25% to 24.99%, depending on the loan type.

7. How long does it take to get approved for a small business loan?

The time it takes to get approved for a small business loan depends on the lender and the type of loan. In some cases, you can get approved within a few days, while other loans may take weeks or even months.


Interest rates play a significant role in small business financing. As a borrower, understanding the factors that influence interest rates can help you secure better terms and rates. You can also consult with financial advisors to help you make informed decisions about your loans. Remember, shopping around for loans and negotiating the best terms can help you save thousands of dollars on interest over the life of your loan.

Thank you for reading! We hope that this guide has been informative and helpful. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach out to us. We’re here to help.

Closing Disclaimer

The information provided in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and should not be construed as financial or legal advice. We recommend that you consult with a financial advisor or attorney before making any decisions related to small business loans or financing. The accuracy of the information in this article is not guaranteed, and the authors and publishers are not responsible for any errors or omissions.