Yesterday the Wall Street Journal published an informative piece about asking people you know and love (i.e., friends and family) for a loan (Do’s and Don’ts of Asking Friends for Money). Here is a recap of the tips offered by experts quoted in the article:
- Put yourself in the lender’s shoes.
- Borrow the money as you would from a bank.
- Bring in a lawyer to draw up the agreement.
- Ask for more money than you think you need.
- Assume the worst.
- Remember “Hamlet”. [“Neither a borrower nor a lender be….”]
Dana H. Shultz, Attorney at Law? +1 510 547-0545? dana [at] danashultz [dot] com
This blog does not provide legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you need legal advice, please contact a lawyer directly.
This post is based on a Quora question in which a user who already had invested money in his corporation wanted to know how he can invest an additional amount. My answer, reproduced below almost verbatim, starts by summarizing the steps for an initial equity investment.
Let’s assume you did your startup paperwork properly: The board of directors approved issuing some or all of the corporation’s authorized shares to you in exchange of payment of certain consideration; you deposited that consideration into the corporation’s bank account; the secretary recorded your share ownership on the corporation’s share transfer ledger and issued a share certificate to you.
The reason such use is increasing: During and since the financial crisis, small businesses have had a difficult time obtaining bank loans, and the loans that they can obtain often have unfavorable terms. (more…)
I recently answered an Avvo question about capital contributions and loans to an LLC. The question and answer are reproduced, in somewhat edited form, below.
Q: I am the sole member of an LLC. What is the best way to make capital contributions? Can I do this in the form of a loan? (more…)
In an article published yesterday (Start-Ups Will Keep Struggling in 2010), the Wall Street Journal reported that startup funding will remain tough to find in 2010.
The major problems:
- Most entrepreneurs use personal savings or contributions from friends and family, but personal wealth – often tied to the value of homes or stock portfolios – has not bounced back from the economic downturn.
- For both conventional bank loans and those insured by the Small Business Administration, entrepreneurs most show (a) that they have invested a significant amount of their own money and (b) solid cash-flow projections.
- During the first half of 2009, the total value of angel investments fell 30% compared to 2008; 2010 is expected to continue at the 2009 level.
- While venture capitalists are continuing to invest, they typically have been protecting later-stage companies already in their portfolios rather than funding startups.
The minor bits of good news:
- While angels are investing less per deal, the total number of deals increased during the first half of 2009 over 2008.
- Stimulus-related measures may increase SBA loans from 1% of all small-business lending to between 5% and 10%.
* * *
This blog does not provide legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney directly.