Bluevine is a popular choice for small businesses needing extra cash, offering lines of credit of up to $250,000 issued by Celtic Bank, a Utah-chartered Industrial Bank and member of FDIC. It’s a great option in particular for businesses that don’t have the required credit score or history to take loans from traditional banks. While the interest rates are higher compared to traditional lenders, Bluevine offers multiple term lengths for different financing requirements.
Bluevine Compared to the Best Small Business Loans
After evaluating lots of different business lenders, we found a few that rise above the rest of the pack. Here are our top picks for the best small business loans:
Bluevine: The Good and the Bad
Finding the right lender for your business requires weighing several pros and cons. This is a space full of trade-offs, where you’ll have to consider repayment terms, lending amounts, qualification requirements, and interest rates in order to find a solution that works for you. Let’s dive into how Bluevine’s virtues and shortcomings stack up against one another.
What Bluevine Is Good At
Bluevine’s lines of credit for small businesses are great for short-term financing who want an easy path to securing extra cash. Bluevine has many things going for it, so we’ve gone deeper into their greatest virtues below.
Quick funding: Bluevine is one of the avenues for getting fast cash for your business. Once you’ve submitted your application (which itself is fast and easy to fill out), funds may arrive in your bank account within 24 hours. And, if you opt to pay a $15 fee for a wire transfer, you can get the money in just a few hours.
Convenient application process: As one would expect from a prominent financial technology company, Bluevine offers a streamlined, online application process. Simply visit its website, provide basic information about your new business, connect your business bank account, upload year-to-date bank statements, and that’s it.
After submitting the required documents, a lending decision is usually delivered between two to five minutes. If approved for a line of credit, all you have to do after that is open the Bluevine dashboard in your web browser and request the funds you need.
Lenient qualifying requirements: Bluevine practices transparency and has clearly outlined the minimum requirements you need to qualify for a loan. If you meet these three qualifying factors, you’re likely to be approved for a line of credit:
- Your business has been operating for at least 24 months
- Your minimum monthly revenue is at least $40,000
- Your personal FICO credit score is 625 or better
This is a lot more lenient than traditional banks and some online lenders. So, fret not if you have borderline poor credit or your business is still relatively new.
Large credit lines: Even with those lenient requirements, you can secure a line of credit as large as $250,000 through Bluevine. You’re unlikely to find a similar combination of low threshold for qualification and large credit line elsewhere.
Limited fees: Another key difference-maker with Bluevine is the pleasant lack of hidden and penalty fees. Bluevine is transparent about repayment terms upfront and you’ll know exactly what you owe and when after qualifying for one of its lines of credit issued by Celtic Bank (a Utah-chartered Industrial Bank, member FDIC).
What’s more, Bluevine doesn’t charge monthly maintenance fees or account closure fees. You also don’t need to worry about prepayment penalties if you decide to pay back your balance early.
What Bluevine Is Lacking
As with any lender, there can be aspects of securing a line of small business credit through Bluevine that can make this a suboptimal solution for getting funds. Let’s run down the areas where Bluevine may fall short of your needs.
Not available in all states: Bluevine doesn’t offer its services in North Dakota, South Dakota, and Nevada. They also cannot grant lines of credit to residents of Puerto Rico or other U.S. territories. If you or your business are based in these areas, you cannot open a line of credit with Bluevine.
Expensive: While it’s certainly easier to qualify through Bluevine than banks and online lenders, it’s can be more expensive comparatively. Lines of credit secured through Bluevine may come with high annual percentage rates. While interest rates start as low as 6.2% of your line of credit, they can reach as high as 78% APR.
That said, high interest rates should be expected when seeking short-term finance with such loose requirements. Lending to young businesses with poor credit is already risky, and attaching high interest rates helps offset the heightened risk.
Limited repayment options: Be prepared to pay large amounts on a weekly or monthly basis for line-of-credit advances. Bluevine’s lines of credit are only available with six-month or 12-month repayment terms, with the former requiring you to make weekly payments and the latter sporting more stringent qualification requirements.
Bluevine Options and Pricing
Alongside business loans, Bluevine also offers business checking and a bill payment platform. Read on as we cover all of Bluevine’s offerings in greater detail below.
Bluevine Lines of Credit
We’ve covered in detail above the basics of securing a line of credit through Bluevine, plus the good and the bad aspects of this service.
Keep in mind, Bluevine is a financial technology company, not a bank. Its lines of credit are issued by Celtic Bank, a Utah-chartered Industrial Bank and member of FDIC.
One key element we haven’t already covered in detail, though, is the pair of repayment options you get with this small business line of credit. You can choose between a six-month or a 12-month repayment term.
The Flex 6 line of credit requires you to make weekly payments over a 26-week period. The first payment will be withdrawn from your bank account just one week after that you receive funding. That can be a bit abrupt for any small business leaning hard on the line of credit for available cash, so be mindful of your capability to meet this quick turnaround.
Fortunately, the Flex 6 has more lenient qualification requirements, and it allows you to request a credit line increase after 45 days in good standing with on-time repayments.
The Flex 12 option allows you to repay your debt over a full year. Repayments are more flexible, allowing for weekly, biweekly, or monthly payments. However, qualification is more strict. You’ll need to be in business for a longer period of time and have a higher FICO score to qualify for this option, compared to Flex 6. The other factor to be aware of is that requests for an increase in the line of credit can only happen after 90 days of on-time repayments and good standing.
Both options allow you to secure between $6,000 and $250,000 for your line of credit.
Bluevine Business Checking
Bluevine also provides a small business checking platform. Again, Bluevine is a financial tech company, not a bank. Deposits on Bluevine’s Business Checking are FDIC-insured through Coastal Community Bank, member FDIC.
Applying for Bluevine Business Checking is easy, fast, and secure, regardless of whether you own a sole proprietorship, corporation, or partnership.
There are a few requirements to consider and documents to submit, which depend on your entity type. In all cases, you’ll need to supply addresses and phone numbers for both you and your business, the industry your business operates in, your EIN or SSN, and your company’s annual revenue. You may also be asked to supply a copy of your driver’s license, details on ownership stake distribution, and incorporation documents.
Once you’re set up, all you have to do is add funds to get started. You can deposit checks using the Bluevine app, transfer funds from another bank account, or add cash at a retail location. From there, you can track bills and make payments seamlessly.
Bluevine also allows you to connect your account to your favorite business tools to auto-sync transactions, keep track of bills, and better manage finances. This includes integrations with accounting (QuickBooks, Wave), payment processing (Venmo, Wise), ecommerce (Square), and operations (Gusto).
Other benefits include no monthly fees or minimum balances, unlimited transactions, and high-yield interest (up to 2.0% on your balance up to and including $250,000 if you meet the monthly activity goal).
Bluevine Bill Pay
Bluevine’s Bill Pay feature lets you manage and pay business bills any time and from anywhere from a convenient, centralized dashboard.
Just add a bill or payee to forward your bills to a dedicated inbox. Alternatively, you can sync your account with QuickBooks Online. Then, decide how to pay your vendors. You can pay directly through your Bluevine Business Checking account, an external bank account, or your credit card. You can also choose whether vendors receive funds via check, ACH, or wire transfer.
Make bill payments using a credit card—including over 40,000 registered payees like national brands and utility companies—to save cash, even if your vendors don’t accept credit cards. Bluevine also lets you forward your bills to your dashboard to pay now or schedule for later and create a custom email address to store all your bills in one place.
Schedule one-time or recurring payments with ease—simply pick a date, know when the payment will arrive, and you‘re done. No need to worry about late payments anymore.
This bill payment solution comes with Bluevine Business Checking.
Bluevine in Summary
Overall, Bluevine makes an excellent choice for businesses looking to open a line of credit to gain fast cash, despite a low credit score or short operational period. You can also get a fee-free checking account and payment processing system, without any maintenance fees or account closure charges, which makes it a cut above the rest.
However, if you’re uncomfortable with its short repayment terms and steeper interest rates, you can check out our other recommendations. Lendio and SmartBiz are great marketplaces for weighing several lending options at once, while OnDeck is a good alternative to Bluevine for fast funding.
Or, if you want the full view of the market and your options, read our full post on the best small business loans available.