Yes, technically any commercial lender can provide an SBA 504 loan, but these specialized loans are often mishandled by lenders who only do a few 504 loans per year. The reason? It takes quite a bit of experience to properly structure, process, and close an SBA 504 loan. Our team has become widely recognized as the experts in these loans because we’ve made them our focus and we have a proven track record going back to 2002. Choosing a commercial lender for your project (or your client’s project) isn’t always easy, so here are a few intangibles that we think set us apart from our competitors…
Mercantile started as a small business just like the ones we finance. We did join forces with a larger regional bank when we understood that doing so would provide us with more tools to help our small business clients. But as a wholly-owned subsidiary of our parent company we have maintained our small business company identity. We understand exactly what you experience as a business owner and we know what it’s like to go up against huge conglomerate-like competitors who have marketing budgets that boggle the mind. Our small size, Mercantile is still a company of 18 people, can often be an advantage. We have the ability to provide each of our clients with exceptional and personalized service, and we work hard to earn your business at each step along the way.
We’ve done the math, and we believe that the SBA 504 loan is the best option for small business owners who want to buy, build, renovate or refinance their commercial real estate. That’s why we decided to specialize in 504 loans, and we’re still one of the few companies to do so. Because this type of financing is the only type of financing we do, we’ve learned these loans inside and out. Among those who specialize in SBA 504 loans, we’re regarded by industry peers as the nationwide experts.
How many times have you worked with someone who overpromises and underdelivers? Yeah, we hate that, too. The reason we’ve been successful (aside from our technical knowledge and experience) is that we deliver: we return phone calls and emails in a timely manner; we meet internal and external deadlines; we advocate on behalf of our clients, often pressuring other parties involved in the loan process in order to keep everything on track.
Because we’re entrepreneurs at heart, we tend to push the envelope, think outside the box, and get creative to come up with solutions that wouldn’t be possible if we gave up on the first “no.” Or the second. We find ways to solve problems no matter what it takes, and this results-driven approach tends to work out pretty well for our clients as well as our referral partners.
You’re busy and you don’t have time to wait around for answers and updates. That’s why we work hard and work smart on your behalf. Our SBA 504 Pre-Qualification Application, for example, is designed to get the ball rolling and save you time. It requires only eight documents and enables us to give you a detailed pre-qualification in 48 hours or less. We want you to be able to focus on your business — getting a commercial real estate loan shouldn’t feel like a full-time (or even part-time) job — so if it’s helpful we can play middle-man with CPAs, attorneys, office managers, etc. in order to gather the necessary information and obtain final approvals. Because we know the ins and outs of the SBA 504 loan program, we’ve become more efficient than most and it pays when you’re up against hard deadlines.
We believe that listening is of fundamental importance to any functional, productive relationship. In any business, you have to listen to the people around you and pay attention to what’s going on in order to learn how you can be better and serve others better. Each of us has a different set of life experiences and insights that can be hugely valuable to one another, but we have to stop and listen and learn. This is an important principle to us, one we practice within our company as well as with our clients. We want to learn about and from your experiences, and we hope you can learn from ours as we build a solid working relationship.
In our business (probably not unlike yours), we’re faced with deadlines every day and the desire to cut corners to save time or money is incredibly tempting. We’re fast and efficient at doing SBA 504 loans, but we also understand the need to do it the right way every single time — no exceptions. It may seem contradictory to say that we’re fast and then tell you that we’re patient, but speed and discipline really go hand-in-hand. We can be fast precisely because we’ve worked hard to learn and perfect the process of financing commercial real estate and construction projects. We may only work on one project for you, but that project is the most important one, and we’ll bring to bear all our knowledge and flexibility and creativity in order to provide you with the best service and product possible.
If you’re ready to take the first step, get our SBA 504 Pre-Approval application and send us the required documents (there are only eight). We’ll be glad to answer any questions you have, so just let us know how we can help.
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