ClickGuardian Click Fraud Protection
The NCF Blog

Category: Finance

Whether it’s a forklift or artic you need to add to your fleet, a finance lease offers hassle-free use for 12 to 60 months.

Finance leases are quite often the agreement of choice for businesses needing cars, vans, forklifts, and other commercial vehicles where they only need those vehicles for a portion of their usable life. The alternative is a contract hire, but finance leases have one big advantage at the end of contract.

That advantage is what happens to the asset when it is sold by the lessor: with a finance lease, the vehicle is returned for sale (usually at auction), and if it sells for a higher price than what is owed on it, you receive the difference from the sale. This could be hundreds of pounds. The lessor will claim relevant writing down allowances leaving you with a lump sum which you can use as you please.

What this means in plain terms is you could claw back some of the costs involved in taking out the finance lease. If you put down a deposit, the profits from the sale could recover this in full or in part. But then again they might not if there is no profit. A profit isn’t guaranteed so this advantage can be nulled in some cases.

What cannot be nulled is the flexibility a finance lease provides. With a contract hire, you are contracted to hire a vehicle for the duration of your agreement. This is the same as with a finance lease, but you have more flexibility at the end of contract. With a finance lease, you have the option to extend the contract and keep using the asset. This means unlike with a contract hire, you have a route for continued use.

Other advantages of a finance lease include:

  • Fast to arrange
  • Low deposit
  • Fixed fees
  • Low monthly payments
  • VAT payable on rentals
  • Reclaim 100% of VAT on commercial vehicles

Something else to consider is how you will use the vehicles you purchase. With a finance lease, there are lower expectations of use and wear. It is not uncommon on a contract hire for businesses to be hit with massive fees for scratches and damage. While a finance lease still requires you to take care of the assets, the ‘fair wear and tear’ terms are wider which is important for vehicles which will be put to work.

Because a finance lease is fast to arrange (most applications are approved in a few hours) this is a quick way to acquire new vehicles for your fleet. The range of vehicles is also unlimited, extending beyond cars and vans. You can purchase scooters and bikes, forklifts, diggers, cranes and more on a finance lease. The construction sector, for example, is making use of this finance facility to purchase more than half of their vehicles.

Speak to our team today

If you want to find out more about using a finance lease to purchase commercial vehicles, speak with our team today. Call us on 01234 240155.

Buying a business is expensive but raising the cash you need needn’t be a struggle.

Secured finance requires an asset which you agree your lender can take possession of if you don’t keep up with your repayments.

The way this works is a legal charge is placed over the asset. This gives your lender legal authority to take the asset if you breach your contractual terms and conditions. What these terms are determine your contractual flexibility.

This type of finance is typically reserved for higher amounts, or lesser amounts in the case of businesses with a poor credit history. By fronting up collateral you can access a lot of money. You’re talking between £100,000 and £500,000 depending on the asset. There is no lender on the market who offers this unsecured.

Because of the higher amounts involved, with unsecured finance you will be offered longer to repay and enjoy lower interest rates. Most businesspeople choose to repay such amounts over 60-months or in some cases longer.

If you want to buy a business with debt, secured finance is the only relevant option for amounts higher than £100,000. This means, plainly, that you must provide an asset to buy a business if you need this amount or more.

Most assets fronted for the purposes of securing finance for the purchase of a business are real estate, property, and vehicles. These can be owned by a business you own, or by yourself, the director of the company making the purchase. Both have their place although most buyers don’t have the luxury of choice.

The value of the assets must justify the amount you wish to borrow. They must be enough to cover the finance amount in full. If they do not cover the value of the amount, you will have to make up the missing percentage by other means. This could be money in your business, your own money, or money raised by refinancing business-owned equipment. Or you may have another investor willing to pay their part.

Something to keep in mind is secured finance takes longer to arrange than unsecured finance, and especially if the asset is property or real estate, because property valuations are always a matter of interpretation and require careful input. Depending on property type there may also be additional legal obligations to meet.

Overall, obtaining secured finance is straightforward and fast. At worst it takes two to three days to arrange so valuations can be made. If it’s something you are considering, the risk you need to beware of is loss of capital and initial investment in the event you do not keep up with repayments. We recommend you speak to a financial advisor and accountant to see which finance facility is best for the purchase of the business.

If you found this article useful, you might be interested to know we are a broker specialised in helping businesspeople purchase or to buy into an existing business. Call us now on 01234 240155 to speak to one of our account managers.

It is not unusual for a small business to spend more than £10,000 on rebranding their business, or triple that if they are a medium-sized business. Our experience providing finance for rebranding tells us even that is a conservative figure, with some businesses spending hundreds of thousands. The actual cost of rebranding will depend on what it is you need, but the biggest costs are well documented.

The biggest cost

The biggest cost with rebranding is agency fees. You see, rebranding is about more than creating a new logo, tag line and colour scheme for your website. Your brand is what differentiates you from other businesses. It is the driving force behind how your customers perceive you. Creating this requires considerable market research and the input of talented designers and marketeers. You will find everything you need with a branding agency, so it should come as no surprise they’re expensive.

It also shouldn’t come as a surprise when you consider a reputable graphic designer commands a fee of a few thousand pounds for just a logo. When you consider that, it might work out cheaper to use a proper branding agency.

Agency fees vary wildly. Low-end fees are around £1,500 for strategy and development, whereas high-end fees are over £10,000. As a small business, you can expect to pay between £10,000 and £20,000 for brand strategy and development with a good agency, but this could double or triple depending on what you need.

Other big costs with rebranding

The second biggest cost of rebranding is the actual, physical rebranding of your business. We’re talking business cards, vehicle graphics, shop signs, leaflets, flyers, product tags, stickers, stationary, your letterhead, your email signature and everything else that has your business name or logo on it. Printing these up or mocking them up digitally takes time. You can save money by buying in bulk but you will still pay a lot.

Budget £5,000 to £10,000 to get everything printed and drawn up. You don’t want to skimp on quality so always try buy the best you can.

Totting it up

Small businesses will pay between £10,000 and £20,000 for rebranding plus another £5,000 on the physical part. Medium-sized businesses will pay double that. As for large enterprises, the sky’s the limit. Some spend millions.

Sourcing funds

If you need to borrow between £10,000 and £50,000 to rebrand your business, we are here to help. Financing all this is possible with unsecured finance, which we would lend your business in most cases if your limited company has a good credit score.

If your company has a bad credit score, you may find secured finance an easier source of funds. This has the benefit of a higher borrowing ceiling – up to £500,000 – but the downside is increased risk to you (loss of collateral). Both finance facilities have their place. Which is best for you depends on your needs so we invite you to contact us for advice.

Call now on 01234 240155 for a no obligation chat, and you will have the opportunity to discuss your needs with one of our advisors. Thank you.

Our recent article, ‘6 Essentials you need to know about hire purchase’ helped explain the nuances of hire purchase. In this article, we will do the same but for a finance lease, yet another finance facility for acquiring equipment. This finance facility may be better suited to you depending on your circumstances.

  1. Ownership position

With a finance lease the legal owner of the equipment is the lessor. The lessor buys the asset for the business and leases it to them over a term. In other words, they retain ownership, and in return, the lessee gets to use the equipment.

  1. End of term

Agreements run from 12 to 60 months. At the end of term, what happens depends on the agreement. The rentals may have been written down to zero, or there may be a balloon payment. If the rentals are written down to zero, ownership can pass to the lessor for a final purchase fee. If the rentals have not written down to zero and there is a balloon, this can be refinanced, or the equipment handed back. This means a finance lease offers you the ability to carry on using the asset at the end of the lease period.

  1. Cost

The vast majority of finance leases have a balloon payment built into them, which effectively takes a portion of the equipment’s value and locks it away, so any repayments do not incorporate it. This considerably reduces the monthly payments compared to a hire purchase, but the balloon payment can be very high. On certain assets, this can make it a very expensive route to final ownership. For this reason, most businesses use finance leases to acquire new equipment they only need for a portion of its life.

  1. Risk and reward

With a finance lease the substantial risk and rewards of ownership pass to the lessee, despite the lessor retaining ownership during the term. This is because the asset will appear on the lessee’s balance sheet, as opposed to an operating lease, where it does not. Because it shows on the balance sheet, outstanding rentals under a finance lease are represented as a liability. However, this does have a benefit …

  1. Corporation tax deductible

The accounts depreciation under a finance lease is corporation tax deductible. The finance charges are also a tax-deductible business expense, because they are not part of the capital cost of the asset. Depending on the value of the asset and how long you intend to keep hold of it, this may be of great benefit to your accounts.

  1. Easier to obtain than standard finance

Finance leases are easier to obtain than standard finance or loans because there is a valuable asset providing fallback. If you have an average or poor credit history, lenders are more likely to approve a finance lease than regular finance, of which the latter puts a lump sum in your account to do with as you wish.

To discuss a finance lease for your business, call us today on 01234 240 155.

Financing the purchase of a small business is easier than you think. We won’t make you jump through hoops to get the funding you need.

Our simplified process, from application to acceptance, means you could receive your funds within 24-hours. We also have dedicated account managers for higher sums who are able to advise you of the best products available. These include:

Secured finance

Raise: Up to £500,000

Secured finance is the most relevant type of finance in the context of small business acquisition. With this finance, the lender requests an asset to secure the finance against, to provide security. This is necessary on higher loan amounts, up to £500,000. The asset could be real estate or more than one asset, such as vehicles.

The increased risk for you means the rates are low. However, there is always the risk of repossession if you do not keep up with your payments. You need to understand the unique risks of secured finance before proceeding.

Unsecured finance

Raise: Up to £25,000

If you have most of what you need and only need to raise a nominal amount to cover the cost of acquisition, say £25,000 or less, unsecured finance is an option. You don’t need to provide an asset or assets as security with this type of finance. You are lent money based on your credit profile, so a steady credit history is required.

Because this type of finance brings more risk to the lender, the rates are usually higher than with secured finance, but because you are borrowing less, it evens out. You can also use this finance facility to cover the high cost of legal fees.

Asset-based finance

Raise: 100% of what your assets are worth

If you are an existing business owner and your business owns assets, you can use these assets to raise the funds you need in whole or in part. The way this works is we would purchase your assets from you and then hire them back to you. You get a cash lump sum for the assets and get to continue using them for the term. When the term comes to an end, ownership of the assets passes back to you.

This type of finance releases the equity you hold in owned assets. The cash you receive can then be used to fund the purchase of a new business.

Other types of finance

We would not be being fair if we did not also mention crowdfunding, venture capitalists, peer-to-peer funding, bank loans and seller loans as an alternative to the three options we provide above. However, unless you have an incredible relationship with your bank, or you know someone interested in getting in on the business with you (who also has the money to fund their investment), our options are the best options.

You’ll find us more flexible than anywhere else, with high rates of acceptance and great rates to acquire and buy into an existing business.

Call us now on 01234 240155 to speak to our team or apply online now. It only takes 5 minutes.

A long-life asset can be any asset with an expected useful life of more than 20 years. Industrial machinery, plant equipment, and commercial vehicles are three examples. These assets are expensive to purchase outright, and so it makes sense for most businesses to spread the cost. This makes acquisition affordable and more accessible, since it allows businesses who would otherwise not be able to afford the asset outright to purchase it and use it – a most useful benefit for small business.

Cost of acquisition

The purchase of a long-life asset through a finance agreement will always cost you more than purchasing the asset outright. Once you have built finance fees into the cost of acquisition, it is not uncommon to pay up to 20% or more on top. Therefore, the ‘rate’ you get is very important. Finance fees from lenders should be clear to you and ideally they should be fixed for the duration of the contract. With this in mind, there are two relevant finance options for purchasing long life assets:

Hire purchase

The first and most relevant finance facility is a hire purchase. It makes sense for long-life assets because you pay off the whole capital cost of the asset over the course of the contract. At the end of the contract, you own the asset. Therefore, the risk and rewards of ownership are with you — just as they should be. With long life assets, agreements tend to run for 60 months but they can last longer.

You might know this finance facility best when applied to buying a new car, and it works in the same way. We purchase the asset for you, hire it back to you, and you pay the purchase price off over a term plus our monthly fee. You will own the asset at the end of the term providing you have repaid what you owe.

Finance lease

Although finance leases have a balloon payment built into them, they do offer you the ability to continue using the asset after your contract ends. You can refinance the balloon to pay off what is left under the contract. The benefit of a finance lease is your monthly payments will be lower than with a hire purchase. The downside is it will take a lot longer to pay off the cost of the asset, and you will end up paying more.

Is this finance facility best for you? The answer to this question comes down to short-term affordability. You may not be able to afford the repayments under a hire purchase, but you may be able to afford those under a finance lease. Just remember the path to ownership is not as simple as with a hire purchase. It is also more expensive.

Want expert advice?

If you wish to acquire new long-life assets for your business, we can advise you of the best finance facilities available based on your circumstances. Call us today on 01234 240155. You can also email us at

Need finance for your plumbing company? If you have cash accumulating in the bank, there’s no need to spend it on your next purchase. Borrowing enables you to keep what money you do have as operating capital. Repay what you borrow over a term that suits you with fixed monthly payments.

But which type of finance is best? That depends on what you need the money for. Here’s some recommendations to help with your choice.

Equipment and tools

If you are seeking finance to fund the purchase of new equipment or tools, asset finance will be a good option. This type of finance is not a loan, instead it is a purchase and hire back arrangement. We would buy the equipment for you and then hire it back to you over a fixed term for a monthly fee as low as 3.6%. We can finance the purchase of most plumbing equipment from pipe benders to pressure kits.

New van

If you are seeking finance to fund the purchase of a new commercial vehicle such as a van, and you wish to own the vehicle, consider a hire purchase. This type of finance agreement passes ownership to you once all payments have been made. If you do not wish to own the van at the end of the agreement, consider a lease. You will never own the van and instead it will be returned at the end of the agreement.

Supplies and parts

If you are seeking finance to build up stock of commonly used supplies and parts, you’ll want flexibility at the time of purchase. Business finance would be the best agreement in this case because it will put a lump sum in your bank account. You would then pay us back over a fixed term plus our monthly fee. Your payments will be fixed and you can choose to pay over 12 to 60 months, whichever suits you.

Rebranding and web

If you are seeking finance to fund rebranding (print, logos, new uniforms etc.) or web (new website, social media, online marketing etc.) then you will benefit most from receiving a lump sum in your account. Business finance is the best option. Our fee starts from 3.6% and you can repay over 12 to 60 months. To get started with business finance, we only need the name of the director and limited company details.

Releasing money tied up in assets

If you already own valuable assets like a work van that’s free from finance or expensive power tools, you can use these to raise funds for your business. This type of agreement is called refinance. We can refinance any equipment you or your business owns. The way this works is you sell your equipment to us which we then hire back to you for a fixed monthly fee. You’ll receive 100% of what we value your equipment for. This lump sum can be used as you please and the refinanced equipment will stay with you.

To speak to one of our experts about finance for your plumbing company, call us on 01234 240155 or email

With so many finance products out there and the eligibility criteria differing between lenders, it can be difficult to establish if you are eligible for business finance before you apply. Some say the only way to find out if you’ll be accepted for finance is to apply for it, and while there is some truth in that, there are some benchmarks you can use to check the likelihood of being approved for finance.

Director’s credit score

If you are the director of a company applying for business finance, your personal credit score plays a role in eligibility. Lenders want to see a good or excellent credit score and a history of responsible borrowing. If you have high debts or you have missed payments, this is noted on your credit file and can lower your score.

The reason your personal credit score matters with business finance is because lenders need to ensure you are not seeking business finance for personal gain. For example, you could be seeking business finance because you have been turned down for a personal loan, in which case it is unlikely you would be approved.

Business’s credit score

If your company is a limited company then perhaps unbeknownst to you it may have a business credit score with any one of three credit reporting agencies: Dun & Bradstreet, Experian, or FICO. It is common for lenders to check a business’s credit score to determine credit history and assess risk of late payment.

However, a low business credit score is not necessarily a deal-breaker because lenders will be able to see what’s impacting your credit score. This may be something historic, such as a single late payment two years ago. Any discrepancies will be weighed on how they correlate to the lender’s risk criteria.


We’ll keep this short and sweet – if you can provide a guarantor then in the case of having a poor credit history you are more likely to be approved for finance. If you are wanting to borrow a lot of money the same premise applies. Sometimes lenders require a guarantor as a matter of course. Remember though you are under no obligation to go with that lender so you can shop around for finance elsewhere.

Cash flow and solvency

Lenders only finance businesses that are solvent. Healthy cash flow is also essential, although lenders make allowances for periods of downtime and periods where you may have incurred an unexpected expense. After all, plenty of businesses seeking finance do so exactly because they are struggling with cash flow.

On amounts above £10,000 it is normal for lenders to want to see three months’ bank statements. They do this to check for undisclosed credit and to ensure you have money coming in and out (solvency). It is okay to break even, turn a profit or turn a small loss, so long as the business is well managed and in good health.

We specialise in helping businesses raise secured finance. Call us now on 01234 240155 or email to find out more.

The average cost to start-up a nursery with rented premises is £80,000. This is for a setup accommodating 30-40 children aged from newborn to 4. However, the sky really is the limit with some nurseries paying double that.

If a nursery is well run and scaled properly, it can be a very good earner. Many of your potential customers will get help from the Government to pay for their childcare and people will never stop having babies. This creates a rich customer base for you to tap into and best of all that customer base is a revolving door.

Demand for your nursery will be reliant on its reputation and location. Get these right and most nurseries flourish. Of course, good management is also essential, and you will also need to be competitively priced. Childcare typically costs £40 to £60 per full day and that’s the price most parents expect to pay.

Costs to consider

With 40 full time places up for grabs and each place generating an average income of £800 per month, you don’t need a degree in mathematics to work out nurseries have the potential to generate significant revenue. Add onto that part time places and additional care and you have the opportunity to make a fair bit.

The biggest cost when setting up is building work and fixtures and fittings for the nursery which are essential. To create a really great space, no expense should be spared to build a wonderful environment for children and parents. Depending on what work is required, you should budget circa £30,000.

Depending on how many children you assign to each key worker (member of trained staff) your payroll costs will be high. This is an ongoing cost but when you’re starting out the cost can outcompete revenue. This is a worry for many nursery owners and that’s why you should set aside £20,000 if possible. This will reduce the burden by allowing you to pay the bills while the business gets off the ground.

Where to get finance

If you are starting a nursery from scratch and you want a lump sum in your bank account so you can plan and spend as you please, start-up finance is what you want. This type of finance is lent to you based on your business plan. If your business plan is sound and we’re happy your business will have a means to repay what we lend you, we will do everything we can to approve your funding and get you started up.

If you only wish to fund the purchase of nursery equipment and furnishings with finance, consider asset finance instead. This is available secured against the equipment you buy and if on a hire purchase agreement you will own the equipment at the end of the term. If you want to fund the purchase of a mini van or school bus for excursions, again you can consider a hire purchase or a vehicle lease through us.

Speak with our team today about your nursery start-up to find out if we can help. Call us on 01234 240155 or email us at

If you operate a retail store or restaurant you will benefit greatly from a POS system no matter the size of your business.

It’s hard to keep track of transactions and a POS system automatically gathers data about each transaction for you. This is about more than just collecting payments. It’s about inventory management and being in-the-know. We have helped retailers and restaurateurs finance state-of-the-art POS systems and we can help you too.

The finance options available to you depend on your circumstances, but there’s two obvious facilities that are most relevant here.

Hire purchase

Since your POS system is likely to be a permanent installation, a lease (where you hire the equipment but never own it) wouldn’t be a perfect fit. A hire purchase is a better fit because at the end of the term you will own the POS system.

A hire purchase agreement is a common finance facility used to acquire more expensive assets such as POS systems. It’s a good fit here because it lets you spread the cost of expensive assets over a longer period of time. This enables businesses that would otherwise not be able to afford certain equipment access it.

You can take out a hire purchase for 100% of the value of the POS system, although most businesses make a 10 to 20% deposit contribution. Doing so gives you access to better rates and will lower your monthly repayments. The way a hp works is we will purchase the POS system for you from the retailer. We will then hire it back to you over an agreed term. Once all your payments are made, ownership will pass to you.

Commercial finance

If you want to own the POS system outright at the point of sale, then a hire purchase isn’t going to be for you. What you want is business finance for an amount that gives you flexibility to invest in the best possible POS system for your business.

This will put a lump sum in your account. We offer both secured and unsecured finance. Secured finance being finance where we secure the amount against property you or your business owns. Our finance agreements skip the outdated questions banks use and they do not have an interest rate. Instead, we charge a fixed monthly fee.


Affordability is the aim of the game with a lease. You will never own the POS system you lease, but you will get to use it. Leases can be half the cost of a hire purchase because you only pay off a percentage of the equipment value.

Agility is another bonus. Leases benefit technologies that are constantly being updated, with the move towards EMV (a payment standard) in POS systems a few years ago demonstrating this. Many businesses who bought their POS systems outright a decade ago had to reinvest considerable sums to stay up to date. Had they leased their POS system they wouldn’t have faced the same issue.

Which finance option is right for you? Speak with our finance team today. Call us on 01234 240 155 or email us at to get started.

Open 7 days a week
Open 7 days a week