The Equipment Leasing and Finance Association (ELFA) highlights five key benefits that make equipment finance an advantageous option for small businesses:
1. Get 100 percent financing with no down payment – Unlike with most traditional lenders, it is possible to arrange 100 percent financing of equipment with no down payment. This is a critical benefit, since cash flow is often a concern for small and new businesses. This allows the business to hold on to cash, or working capital, and use it for other areas of the business, such as expansion, improvements, marketing or R&D.
2. Eliminate the risk of ownership – A business just starting out can use equipment financing to help lessen the uncertainty of investing in a capital asset until it achieves a desired return, increases efficiency, saves costs or meets other business objectives.
3. Keep up-to-date with new technology – To be on the cutting edge and be competitive, businesses often need access to new technology. Leasing, loans and other financing can enable small businesses to acquire more and better equipment than they could have without financing. In addition, businesses that use lease financing can avoid the risk of owning obsolete equipment, since many agreements allow for easy and fast equipment updates.
4. Plan expenses for cash flow and business cycle fluctuations – Financing equipment allows for greater certainty in budgeting by setting customized rent payments to match cash flow and even seasonal cash flows.
5. Obtain the convenience of product and service bundling – Certain financial products allow businesses to finance the entire cost of equipment, including installation, up-front maintenance, training and software charges, thereby packaging systems and ancillary products and services into a single solution. This makes the equipment acquisition easy to manage and frees up the business to focus on its core operations.