There are still some sources of credit available to small businesses, though they may be hard to find, according to a new report.

The latest Intuit Future of Small Business Report looks at the credit outlook for small businesses. It found that while many large financial institutions have slashed their small-business lending activities, smaller lenders such as community banks and credit unions are still actively providing small businesses with credit and credit services.

To qualify, small-business borrowers still face close scrutiny of their assets, liabilities and business plans. As in the old days, businesses with collateral and positive cash flow have a better chance of getting a loan.

“Borrowers must adjust and lower their expectations back to the years before the credit boom,” wrote Steve King and Carolyn Ockels of Emergent Research, which prepared the report with Intuit. “They need to think more strategically about assets and cash-flow projections when speaking to lenders.”

The SBA has recently introduced a new loan program known as the American Recovery Capital loan in response to the credit crunch (see SBA Introduces New Small Business Loans). But small businesses interviewed for the Intuit report had mixed feelings about SBA loans. Some felt that the SBA loan program requirements, lending process and related efforts were too burdensome, while a smaller subset viewed the SBA loans more favorably.

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