What do banks look for in a business plan

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Business plans are an essential tool for companies looking to source investors or design new long term strategies.

Another key reason for a strong business plan is the need to secure funding from banks – a task that can be difficult if ill prepared.

Here are some of the key points banks look for in a business plan.

Target market

Another key aspect of any good business plan, this document shows that the market you’re after is large enough to sustain ongoing operations of the business, and not simply a short bubble. It’s important that the plan proves your business has a required product or service. As a result, statistics are often a good idea.

Personal financial information

It’s not just your business finances that will be checked by the bank, but your own finances too. Banks often conduct credit checks involving tax returns, personal assets and personal banking details.

Financial projections

These are an essential facet of a good business plan, and serve to show bankers that you’ve thought ahead. Three main statements are often requested from banks here, including income, balance and cash flow. These should be projected monthly for the first year of operations.

Creating an accurate plan

To ensure a plan is created that fulfils all of the requirements a bank is likely to look for, it’s important to consider the various options available. Businesses don’t have to create a plan from scratch, as there are providers available which can design and write the document for you.

It’s also important to consider that investing in a business plan early on will yield benefits later, as the document can become a vital part of business strategy.

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