There is still a long way to go for the liquor store industry to attain its full potentials, so remembering that there are a variety of loan options out there to help can be crucial in staying ahead of the competition. In order to run a successful liquor store and compete with neighbouring businesses, you will need a constant flow of cash at your disposal.
But note that lenders in the United States generally consider liquor stores a high – risk industry. It simply means you might have trouble qualifying for a conventional business loan from say, your local bank. One important thing you will certainly need is a good understanding of your own financial situation.
That means your credit score, revenue, cash in the bank, and outstanding debts. But have it in mind you don’t need a perfect credit score or even profitability to qualify for a liquor store loan. You only need to show a solid precise cash flow position in order for lenders to trust that you will return their loan.
It means that the quality of your financial foundation is proportional to the type of opportunities you will get for funding your liquor business as well as how much the loan will cost you. You will need to also know how you intend to use the funds and what you’re planning to do with the capital before you can match yourself with the right loan type.
Chances are, you’re looking for help to cover your inventory expenses. For large expenses, you should get an accurate idea of how much you need to borrow to narrow down lenders by loan amount and type. Make sure that your lender is willing to work with businesses dealing in alcohol — some aren’t.
9 Financing Options & Loans Available for Liquor Stores in the United States
Operating a liquor store is a dream come true for most. You get to work with people, sell a variety of popular beverages, and earn great money while you’re at it. However, if you’re well beyond the dream phase, and need to stock your shelves with Becherovka, Malort, or artisanal sake, then liquor store inventory financing could be just what you need.
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1. Bank Loans
Indeed conventional bank loans are the preferred financing option of any business searching for the healthiest rates and terms. Getting great rates allows liquor stores to hold on to as much cash as possible to put back into their business, and also to put in the owner’s pockets as profits. Due to the good rates and great terms, bank loans come with strict lending requirements — so the liquor store and its owners must have excellent credit to qualify for traditional financing.
2. SBA Loans
This is one of the best business loans around for most entrepreneurs, irrespective of industry. That’s because these loans are guaranteed through the U.S. Government’s Small Business Administration, which means that they are lower risk to dole out from the banks that issue them. Note that this allow lenders to offer better terms, including repayment periods of up to 25 years, and substantial sums of capital (up to $5.5 million) at priority interest rates.
Howbeit, these loans are competitive, since so many borrowers also want to take advantage of these strong offers. That means lenders can be choosy and only provide loans to some of the most qualified candidates. There’s also quite a bit of paperwork involved in applying for these loans, so if you need fast access to capital, you will want to look into an alternative route for capital.
3. FinTech and Other Alternative Sources
Once a liquor stores have exhausted both the SBA and conventional lending options without getting the needed capital they wanted, another great option is to obtain an institutional lending facility or FinTech business loan. However, note that this type of alternative financing is especially beneficial to businesses with a limited credit history, limited time in business, and for growing companies in need of fast financing.
4. Inventory Financing
Acquiring inventory is indeed going to be one of the biggest expenses any liquor store will incur throughout the life of the store—once your liquor store opens its doors to the public. Notably, you will have to keep plenty of bottles on hand—and keep up with new and interesting options—in order to keep your customers coming back.
This financing option works by providing money to purchase products you plan to sell. Note that you will be able to get the cash you need to purchase the inventory that stocks your shelves without having to sweat over additional collateral in the process. This is because the inventory itself serves as the collateral for these loans, which means that the lender can repossess what you’ve bought in case you’re unable to pay them back.
5. ACH Cash Advance
Although the ACH loan isn’t actually a loan at all, instead it is the sale of the liquor store’s future bank revenue in exchange for an upfront cash advance. Note that this option is nowhere near the cheapest business financing option in this list. However, this cash advance may be quite useful for stores that have been locked – out of all other forms of financing.
Another great benefit is that cash advances make funds available within a day or two (and sometimes even the same day). ACH cash advances are repaid by having a set amount deducted from the borrower’s bank account each day via ACH until the merchant funder is repaid on a set term.
6. Equipment Financing
Every retail business is never just about the product inside of them. Many customers will pop in on their way to a party or on their way home from work and want a ready – to – drink bottle. It means you will also need a commercial fridge to that effect.
And there are other fixtures involved in opening or expanding a liquor store: display cases, POS systems, tables, and more. Note that for these sorts of expenses, getting a liquor store equipment loan becomes crucial. With equipment financing, you secure a quote from a vendor for the equipment you prefer to purchase, which you submit to a lender.
Once you’re approved for the loan, the lender will provide you the capital to finance the purchase, and the assets you buy will serve as the loan’s collateral. Due to this set up, called “self collateralizing,” your store financing has collateral built in the case of default, so lenders are sometimes more willing to open up qualification criteria to a wider group of buyers.
7. Business Credit Card
You can use this type of business credit card during a predetermined period without paying interest on balances. Indeed this very powerful—think of not owing anything on your business credit card for a year or more (this is often how long these intro periods last).
Very experienced business owners tend to leverage these credit cards as an interest – free loan, utilizing what they need on their credit line to spend on supplies or even large purchases. Moreover, that purchasing power is instant. You can even choose to transfer your existing business credit card balance so that you don’t accrue more interest on your existing debt.
8. Online business loans
Online business loans provide an easy way to obtain money immediately, without having to worry about your credit. They are often high – interest, short – term loans that are very easy to qualify for and great for emergency cash.
9. Business Line of Credit
This financing option is seen as a hybrid of business loans and a credit card cash advance, since it offers borrowers a fixed amount of money that they can “draw” against several times throughout the duration of the contract with the lender. Note that this option lets you take out different amounts of cash from an overarching sum of money, only paying interest on what you’ve borrowed.
According to experts, this financing option remains a great option for entrepreneurs who need periodic access to a little extra funding but may not need enough money to make a conventional loan a savvy option. A line of credit can also help pay for purchases in a way that doesn’t require borrowers to pay interest on money they’re not using.
7 Reasons Liquor Stores Need Loans and Diverse Financing Options
On average, liquor stores rotate their products between 8 and 10 times every year, meaning every successful liquor store needs constant funding to keep the shelves continuously stocked. Owing to the intense competition in the industry, with most towns having a liquor store every couple of blocks, there is a lot you are expected to do as a business in order to gain regular patronage from consumers.
Consumers have a number of priorities when it comes to choosing their favourite store, and below are few reasons liquor stores always need financing options.
- Expansion and Renovations
Once a budding liquor store starts generating positive revenue and is ready to expand their current location, there are a variety of loans to help. Indeed, expanding or renovating can help draw in more customers, but even if a liquor store owner is ready to make this transition, there are times when unexpected costs arise. At that point, financing options can help to achieve this aim.
In this business, inventory remains the most important aspect of any liquor store. A liquor store owner may need to stock up before peak seasons, received a great offer on a large purchase, or simply wants extra of a popular item, searching for a loan to help cover this necessary cost may be a good agenda.
In this century, technology is a must, even in the liquor store industry. Note there are plenty of cloud based systems to help liquor store owners focus more on selling products and less time dealing with the hassles of running a business.
One other major technological shift that is starting in the industry is the sale of these products through ecommerce and digital platforms – this trend will eventually become a norm in the industry, so getting ahead of the game can be incredibly beneficial.
Also in this business, there is plenty of Point of Sale Systems that has been shown to increase productivity and enhance consumer purchasing. Irrespective of what the system is, investing in technological products is important for every single industry, and there are always funding options available to help implement these technological systems.
- Marketing and Social Media
The fresher and younger generation are becoming an important demographic for liquor store owners to be targeting. Using aggressive marketing campaigns streamlined through social media venues is essential to reach this demographic.
More and more people today are glued to their cell phones, the internet, and social media. That is the more reason why learning to effectively use the various social media portals is becoming very crucial in producing effective marketing strategies for liquor stores today.
- Innovation, Creativity, and Mixology
Partnering with local breweries, wineries, and even restaurants to grow your customer base while catering to new, hip trends is becoming necessary in the liquor store business. Another major way that liquor store owners are innovating is through providing local products, eco – friendly products, and a variety of products.
According to statistics, the younger generations are all about experimenting and trying new things; they are also more focused on at home entertainment and parties. To liquor stores and their owners, getting more engaged and innovative is crucial when seeking to capitalize on this new trend, and there are a variety of loan options out there to help fund innovative ideas needed to grow a liquor store.
For some liquor stores, the need to keep employees eager to up sell while keeping them happy with consistent payment is a useful strategy. Some struggling businesses consider cutting payroll costs before other expenses, leading to an aggravated and disengaged workforce; thus, a liquor store owner will not be able to keep a satisfied work force.
Note that cutting payroll costs should always be a last resort, no matter what industry the business is in. According to experts, customer service is too important to a liquor store for payroll costs to be low on the list of a liquor store owners financial priorities.
- Hiring New Employees
Long after the 2008 recession, many businesses in every industry that cut employment costs to stay afloat are looking to employ new hands in today’s rebounding economy. Note there is plenty of room for liquor store owners to consider hiring new employees and growing their workforce.
This is also considered pertinent for any liquor store owner looking to expand or renovate their liquor store business. Have it in mind that hiring new employees, especially employees that understand the growing trends and demands of key demographics, is vital to succeed in this industry.
There are a variety of loan options available to you so you can launch your new business successfully. However, not all loans are created equal—nor are their designed purposes. By having a specific purpose in mind before you seek financing, you can make sure you’re choosing the right loan option for you.