What is an Equipment Loan and How Does It Work?

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Monty Rakusen/Getty Photos; Illustration by Austin Courregé/Bankrate


So your organization wants to purchase one thing massive. Whether or not that’s a brand new copier, restaurant tools or perhaps a semi truck, an tools mortgage could be simply what you want.

Provided by banks and on-line lenders, the most effective tools financing might help enterprise homeowners who want new tools to begin or develop a enterprise or restore or improve outdated tools to stay aggressive.

Whereas this mortgage may be simpler to get approval for, it has some drawbacks value contemplating.

What’s an tools mortgage?

An tools mortgage is financing you are taking out to purchase a selected piece of enterprise tools.

And on this case, tools may be fairly broad. Firms take out tools loans to finance the acquisition of:

  • Computer systems
  • Workplace furnishings
  • Autos for business use
  • Equipment
  • Industrial kitchen tools
  • HVAC items
  • Cellphone programs
  • Printers and copiers
  • Medical tools
  • Industrial tools

In different phrases, if your organization must make an enormous buy of a tangible asset, an tools mortgage might help you break it into manageable funds that you simply make over time.

How does tools financing work?

Tools financing works through the use of the tools you’re shopping for to safe the mortgage. The tools turns into collateral, that means the lender can seize the asset if you happen to fail to repay what you borrow. You may additionally have to offer a private assure, which requires you to be personally answerable for the mortgage if your small business can’t pay the mortgage again. This places your private property in danger.

Tools financing often comes with a set rate of interest and a requirement that you simply make periodic funds to repay the mortgage. Often, the mortgage time period falls someplace between three to 10 years.

Many tools mortgage choices require a down cost, anyplace from 10 % to twenty %, relying on the lender.  The more cash you may provide as a down cost, the extra favorable the rates of interest are typically.

Tools mortgage eligibility necessities

As with all financing, banks, credit score unions and tools financing firms vet you earlier than providing you the mortgage. Meaning they may take a look at a number of elements, together with:

  • Your small business credit score rating
  • Your private credit score rating
  • How lengthy you’ve been in enterprise (you often must have existed for no less than a yr to get authorized)
  • Your small business’s revenue and loss assertion
  • The worth of the tools you wish to buy

It’s doable to seek out lenders prepared to work with enterprise homeowners with low credit and restricted time in enterprise. However the extra favorable these elements look to the lender, the higher the rate of interest you’ll rating in your tools mortgage.

That curiosity isn’t the one potential value to judge. Some tools financing comes with mortgage charges like origination charges, late charges, or prepayment penalties, so make sure to learn the high quality print to know what you’ll doubtlessly pay.

Tools mortgage vs. tools leasing

You may evaluate this to purchasing a automotive. With an auto mortgage, you pay extra month-to-month, however you personal the automotive when you repay what you borrowed. Once you lease, you basically lease the automobile, which has a number of benefits.

Tools leasing sometimes doesn’t require a down cost, making it a greater possibility for enterprise homeowners who can’t afford to tie up funds to buy tools. One other benefit to leasing is that it could actually defend you from depreciation or obsolescence. When you’re shopping for one thing that gained’t be value a lot — and even functioning or related — by the point your mortgage time period ends, proudly owning the asset doesn’t go very far. With little-to-no resale worth, leasing it’d make extra sense for your small business.

Professionals and cons of kit loans

When you’re nonetheless attempting to determine between an tools mortgage and a lease, understanding the professionals and cons of kit financing might help. Listed below are a number of the upsides and disadvantages of an tools mortgage to think about:


  • Quick funding. Some lenders who provide enterprise tools loans expedite these purposes as a result of there may be built-in collateral. In case you are working with a web-based lender, you possibly can get funds in only a day or two. 
  • No further collateral required. Because the tools you’re financing serves as collateral for the mortgage, you gained’t should put up different property in opposition to the mortgage. 
  • Versatile financing. Tools financing usually has extra lenient underwriting than different kinds of small enterprise loans, which may make it simpler to acquire one with out placing up a ton of money. This might assist you to preserve optimistic money stream, even whereas taking out an enormous mortgage.
  • Construct enterprise credit score. When you pay your tools mortgage installments on time, you’ll construct optimistic enterprise credit score. This might help you create a optimistic relationship together with your present lending establishment and earn a excessive sufficient credit score rating to get extra loans sooner or later.


  • Probably pricey curiosity. As a result of it is a mortgage, you’ll should pay what accrues in curiosity. That signifies that, in the end, that very same piece of kit will value your organization more cash than if you happen to saved up and purchased it outright.
  • Slender kind of financing. Such a mortgage can solely be used for tools. You might be able to lease tools, relying on the mortgage phrases. You’ll want a separate kind of mortgage if you happen to additionally want cash for money stream or operations. 
  • Could require a down cost. Even with collateral, you possibly can be required to place down a 20 % down cost. This might influence your financial savings or present money stream. 
  • Mortgage might outlive tools. Your mortgage might last more than the tools. If you are going to buy a printing press on a 10-year mortgage however the tools breaks down after eight years, you’re nonetheless on the hook for the remainder of the mortgage quantity. 

Bankrate perception

An tools mortgage could not at all times be the best selection, however it may be instrumental to constructing a brand new enterprise or shopping for costly tools. Companies with tight money stream must also think about an tools mortgage as an alternative of utilizing financial savings. 

The place to get an tools mortgage

If these execs outweigh the cons, right here’s a take a look at the place to seek out enterprise tools loans.

  • Conventional banks and credit score unions. Most of the identical monetary establishments that supply different kinds of small enterprise loans provide tools financing. You’ll usually want to fulfill extra stringent standards to qualify, however an tools mortgage from a financial institution or credit score union could include a decrease rate of interest and higher reimbursement phrases than one from a web-based or equipment-focused lender.
  • On-line lenders. On-line or fintech lenders sometimes provide streamlined purposes, which may imply quicker and extra accessible funding. They could be a good possibility for startups and enterprise homeowners who don’t have good or glorious credit score.
  • SBA lenders. These tools loans are backed by the Small Enterprise Administration (SBA). Like financial institution and credit score union tools financing choices, these usually have stricter underwriting necessities however favorable charges.
  • Tools financing firms. Some firms particularly provide loans to purchase enterprise tools. Like on-line lenders, getting authorized for loans from tools financing firms may be simpler and quicker, however each include excessive charges and charges.
  • Tools producers. Generally, the corporate that makes the tools you wish to purchase will provide a financing plan. Whereas this may occasionally sound handy, this feature often comes with larger rates of interest than different lending sources.

Bankrate perception

The SBA has a number of mortgage packages that may assist finance tools purchases. The appropriate one for you depends upon how a lot cash you want in addition to your credit score rating and enterprise financials. For extra info, look into:


Alternate options to tools loans

If, after studying what tools financing is, you determine it’s not for you, there are different methods to pay on your new asset. Listed below are some alternate options to tools loans:

  • Enterprise bank cards: If you may get a great introductory price on a enterprise bank card, you might be able to keep away from curiosity funds for as much as a yr.
  • Tools leasing: Chances are you’ll wish to think about leasing your tools. Whereas this doesn’t construct fairness in your organization, it means that you can have entry to the tools you want till you may afford a mortgage.
  • Time period loans: Enterprise time period loans can be utilized for enterprise property and a greater variety of business-related bills.
  • Strains of credit score: Enterprise traces of credit score are revolving accounts. Like a bank card, you may spend as much as a certain quantity and pay curiosity on the cash you’ve borrowed.

Backside line

An tools mortgage can allow your small business to purchase even costly tangible property that can assist it thrive. Because the tools acts as collateral, this mortgage may be an accessible possibility for startups and low credit debtors. However as with every type of financing, it comes at a value: curiosity and probably even charges.

To ensure your small business doesn’t overpay, consider choices from no less than a couple of lenders earlier than you signal on the dotted line.

Often requested questions

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