Below you will find a list of the most “frequently asked questions” (“FAQ”) about our unsecured business loan services, whether you are a business owner, accountant, lender or otherwise. Hopefully, we have covered all the FAQ you would have wanted answered, but for anything else you may want to enquire about, please fill in a contact form or call us direct on 0845 388 9725.
1. Who is Touch Financial?
Established in 2008, Touch Financial is an award-winning asset finance brokerage.
2. Who do you act for?
We act for ‘you’ – our customer at all times.
3. What is your role?
Our main role is to introduce you to a number of funders on our approved panel who we believe have the appetite and the ability to offer you a facility.
4. What qualifications do you have?
We have a policy of ensuring that all our Consultants have passed (at the very least) the foundation level exams awarded via the Asset Based Finance Association (ABFA). For more information about ABFA please click here www.abfa.org.uk.
In addition to this we also have our own in house training programme ensuring our Consultants are trained to handle customer enquiries.
5. Are you part of a group?
Yes. Touch Financial is proud to be part of the award-winning SFP Group which provides a wide range of other services to businesses, accountants and lenders. For more information about the group click here www.sfpgroup.com.
6. Are you independent / impartial being part of a group?
Yes, Touch Financial is independent and impartial. It has more than 30 funders on its approved panel and by normally recommending 2 to 3 suitable funders, we ensure that our customers have the ultimate choice on who to select. Further, there is no hard sell and what’s more we have no objections to comparing offers from our funders against other funders you may have sourced yourself or through other brokers.
7. What are your Terms of Business?
Please click here for full details of our Terms of Business www.touchfinancial.co.uk/terms-of-business/.
8. Are you regulated?
Touch Financial is a trading name of SFP Brokers Limited, Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN: 727220).
9. Why do you recommend Unsecured Business Loans as a source of finance?
For many companies in need of funding, the idea of offering security for a business loan seems untenable, whether due to their current lack of collateral or their industry’s reliance on intangible assets. An Unsecured Business Loan circumvents this problem, allowing firms to access crucial funding and stabilise their cashflow.
Whether your company wants to maintain or expand its operations, secure its finances while chasing late payments, launch a short- or long-term project or simply create a safety net, the possibilities of an Unsecured Business Loan are endless.
10. Do you deal with all Unsecured Business Loan providers?
We have relationships with a significant proportion of the Unsecured Business Loan providers in the market to offer our customers a wide choice. We select our panel of funders carefully and value the importance of the Broker / Funder relationship, but not all funders are the same and some do not want to work via a third party introduction. New funders are coming to the market on a regular basis, and as such we constantly review and refresh our panel as well as monitoring the service levels of our longer-term partners to ensure they are meeting our customers’ needs.
11. Are all the loan providers on your panel regulated?
No, but a significant proportion are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (“FCA”). For more information please visit www.fca.org.uk/register.
We would, however, always recommend – before proceeding with any funder – that you:
12. How do you decide which unsecured business loan is appropriate for each prospect?
The process is simple. Our consultants are all trained in working with unsecured business loans and certain related products. They will spend a short period of time consulting with you on the phone to obtain all of the relevant information required for us to make an introduction to any relevant funder. The information you provide will dictate the relevant products / funder suitable for you.
13. Why do you normally refer two or three providers?
We take this approach so as to offer choice, remain impartial and ensure that the customer always has the final say in which loan provider to select. Giving customers an opportunity to compare and contrast loan amounts, terms and rates is very important, and our consultants are always on hand to discuss any of the quotes provided.
14. How do you know these providers are suitable for my business?
We know because we have spent a considerable amount of time and resource in developing our own in house matrix tailored specifically to enable us to identify which loan providers, based on various formulas, fit with your business requirements.
15. Why do some other UBL brokers refer just one provider?
There may be occasions when it appears clear that your specific circumstances could be perfectly matched by a particular funder. We believe, however, that alternatives should be provided whenever possible.
16. What makes Touch Financial different to other UBL brokers?
Firstly, we deal with a significant proportion of the unsecured business loan providers in the marketplace. We are also FCA regulated and are constantly striving to refine our systems and procedures to further improve our customer’s journey. We are also a very proud award-winning brokerage having been awarded the Asset Based Finance Broker of the year by the prestige Business Moneyfacts on 5 separate occasions. Additionally we have our own unique in-house training programme.
We subscribe to Feefo which is an independent rating service which allows customers to provide honest and open feedback concerning their experience of the work undertaken by Touch in securing their business finance. To see what our customers think about us, check our Feefo Reviews here.
We are keen to assist you with compare offering you have received and give our recommendations on the right facility for you as well as help negotiate terms with lender.
17. What is your after sales service like?
Once your loan term has commenced you are allocated your own Consultant at Touch. Their role is not intrusive but to ensure that any problems you experience are dealt with properly (sometimes with our involvement) or to act as a sounding board should you have any ongoing questions about the operation of your loan. From time to time we might also be able to assist with other funding or business requirements you might have.
18. How do you get paid?
Touch Financial work on a commission basis with funders which is only paid once a facility has been provided. Funders should disclose to you that Touch is being paid a commission and full details should be available on request. However we can also provide this information to you upon request.
19. What is your fee?
We are normally paid a fixed fee of 5% of the loan value.
20. Can I get a cheaper deal if I approach the lenders on your panel myself?
A proportion of funders on our panel may charge the same whether or not you come to them via a third party, whilst others do have pricing models that take into account any third party commissions and will add that on top.
All the funders on our panel however know that any businesses we introduce to them will normally receive quotes from more than one funder. This encourages them to offer market competitive rates.
21. Who do I complain to if I am not happy?
Should you have any problems with our service our Director Annabel Ah-Lim will be very pleased to speak to you directly – firstname.lastname@example.org.
22. Do you always act for me rather than the lender?
The group does have strong relationships with our Panel and provides other services directly to them, but we will not act for any of the funders where Touch has in the first instance successfully assisted you obtain an unsecured business loan.
23. How much can I borrow via an Unsecured Business Loan and how long will the process take?
The loan providers on our panel will usually examine a company’s turnover in order to assess the amount which they are willing to lend, with a common approximate value being the equivalent to 10% of annual turnover.
How quickly these funds can become available will depend mainly on the speed with which we receive your documentation. Nevertheless, we will strive to provide funder quotes within 48 hours, and in many cases companies can start receiving money in their account within as little as a week of our first conversation.
24. What documentation will I need to provide?
Loan providers will need to see your bank statements for the last three months, along with the firm’s last filed balance sheet and details of your VAT returns for the past year. In the event that your business has yet to gain VAT registration, then a monthly breakdown of company revenue should suffice, but these are details which we can clarify as our consultants start introducing you to prospective loan providers.
25. What are personal guarantees and do all shareholders need to provide them?
A personal guarantee is an agreement with the loan provider whereby the director of a business or a key shareholder(s) agree to take personal responsibility if the company is unable to keep up with the repayments, paying the debts owed themselves in this situation. Funders will let us know if they are happy to take just one personal guarantee or need multiple shareholders to provide this, depending on the individual case.
26. If my company has a historic paid CCJ or isn’t making a profit, will it be refused a loan?
Rest assured that the funders on our panel will analyse a range of different aspects of your business – such as turnover, profit, trading history and your last filed accounts – before making a decision on your eligibility. The loan providers we work with will try to understand each prospective client’s individual needs and requirements.
27. How long do you need to have been trading for?
Most loan providers will tend to favour companies that have been trading for at least 18 months to 2 years. We may be able to find some that will help without such a long trading history, however it’s important to funders that your business can show some degree of stability, both in terms of limiting the risks involved on their side and ensuring a smooth business relationship once the loan term commences.
28. What are Annual Premium Rates (APRs)?
This term refers to the cost of funding, an amount usually calculated by lenders adding together the fees involved with the desired loan and the nominal interest rate. The Annual Premium Rates (APRs) involved with Unsecured Business Loans vary from funder to funder. Some remain constant throughout a loan term, others change on a monthly basis; some can shift in parallel with your company’s credit score, others won’t be affected either way.
All loan providers are legally required to show their APR as a basic means by which customers can compare their quote to those of other funders, but again, our team of consultants is here to help should you have any queries about what the different rates entail.
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"Very polite and a professional team of financial advisers who seem to know their business, work well within their industry and get a result."-Invoice Finance Introduction
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