Back in May, FreshBooks partnered with Fundbox – a secure online service that lets you quickly get advances for unpaid invoices to squash short-term cash flow worries. After plenty of feedback (and love) from customers just like you, the Fundbox service is now available right in your FreshBooks account, making it even easier for you to get the funds you need to keep your business cash-flow stable, whenever you might need ‘em. Keep on reading for the details.
Why should I care?
One of the greatest challenges of running a small business is managing cash flow. Regardless of how well your business might be doing, every now and again you might encounter cash flow gaps that need bridging right away – whether it’s to pay your staff and contractors, or buy the equipment and supplies you need to serve your customers better. But securing money for your business through traditional means (aka, via banks & other financial institutions) isn’t easy in today’s economy – and if you’re lucky enough to even get approved for credit, the funds usually take forever to reach your bank account.
That’s where Fundbox comes in. Fundbox helps small business owners just like you solve short-term cash-flow worries by giving you an advance on unpaid FreshBooks invoices within 24 – 48 hours.
A small word before you get started
As useful as Fundbox might be for your small business, it isn’t necessarily for everyone. For instance, if you have steady cash flow into your business or if you can afford to wait until your client pays you, then this service likely isn’t for you. Like any other type of credit, be respectful of how you use it and make sure you read and understand the costs, as well as the repayment plans upfront. To make it even easier for you, FreshBooks will present you the amount you’re borrowing and the exact repayment terms before you make any kind of decision.
How much does it cost?
Signing up for a Fundbox account is free. You only have to pay a fee when you choose to receive an advance on an outstanding invoice. Here’s exactly how it works: the fee for using $1,000 of credit ranges from approximately $52 to $72. After getting 100% of the invoice amount upfront, you then payback 1/12 of the invoice amount + fees each week for the next 12 weeks…and that’s basically it. No hidden costs, no other strange surprises. And if you ever want to pay back the total balance earlier, Fundbox will waive the remaining fees.
How do I get set up?
The next time you log into your FreshBooks account, you’ll see this pop-up:
Clicking the big shiny green button will direct you to your oldest unpaid invoice that’s over $100 USD. You’ll then notice a new link at the top of the screen that prompts you to “Get an advance”:
Click on that link and if you already have a Fundbox account, you’ll be prompted to log in using your Fundbox credentials:
If you don’t have a Fundbox account, you’ll be automatically prompted to create one right inside FreshBooks:
At this point, Fundbox will analyze your accounting data to see how much credit you’re eligible for. Note that not everyone is guaranteed to receive credit, but if you have at least 6 months worth of accounting data and invoicing activity in FreshBooks, you stand a pretty good chance. This process can take up to 24 hours (but is normally faster than that), so go for a walk or start working on that next big project while Fundbox works its magic.
Once you’re all set, you’ll receive an email notification telling you what your credit limit is, as well as which invoices are eligible for an advance. In order for your account to be activated by Fundbox, you need to click on one of the invoice links in the email to verify your email address:
How can I apply my credit toward an unpaid invoice?
If you’re ready to receive an advance on an unpaid invoice, simply select an invoice that qualifies. Before you make any commitments, you’ll be presented with the full details of your advance, including how much you’ll get, how much you’ll have to repay (including the associated fees), and finally, your repayment schedule:
If it’s the first time you’re receiving an advance, you’ll need to enter in your bank details. Note – the bank account that you enter here will be used by Fundbox to deposit your advance, but also automatically withdraw repayments:
Once you’ve confirmed your bank details, you’re done! Your advance will typically arrive the next business day, but could take up to three business days depending on your bank:
Repay early and all remaining fees get waived
If your client pays you sooner than expected or you have the funds on hand to repay early, you can do so right in your FreshBooks account and save on fees. Simply select the invoice for which you received an advance, and click the “repay early” link at the top of the invoice:
You’ll then be shown exactly how much will be repaid from your bank account and when. Plus, you’ll also be able to see exactly how much you’ll save too. Fundbox rewards you for early repayment by waiving all of the remaining fees on your advance – woot!
Interested? Give it a whirl!
If you’ve got a few unpaid invoices lying around and want to give this a try, simply log into your account and follow the prompts. If you’re curious to see how much credit you’re eligible for, but don’t have any unpaid invoices at the moment, you can still sign up – you won’t have to pay a penny in fees until you actually take out an advance on an invoice.
As always, feel free to drop us a line in the comments section below or give us a ring at 1.866.303.6061 if you’ve got any feedback – we’re always listening.