We had the pleasure of interviewing Bran, the owner of Lazy Lawn to learn about his experience accessing capital as an entrepreneur. Check out his great story and insights below!
Interview with Bran from Lazy Lawn:
Can you tell our readers a bit about you and your business?
Lazy Lawn® is Canada’s leading choice in the distribution and installation of artificial grass lawns. The business was started in May of 2013 with the goal of providing homeowners with maintenance free artificial grass lawns. I started this business because I was bored in the world of finance, and I simply loved the challenge of starting a business from scratch.
What is the greatest challenge you have faced in your business?
The greatest challenge for our business has always been accessing capital at reasonable rates. I started this business on credit cards, and once they where tapped I got a $7,500 pay day loan – I think the interest rate was about 40%. I’m certain we could have received better rates from the wise guys, but I didn’t want to venture down that road. It simply amazes be how little Canadian banks do to help small business in this country. They call me weekly to sell me everything I don’t require, and never listen to what I do require. It’s an absolute shame, as small businesses drive jobs in our economy.
How did you use Lendified to grow your business?
When we received our first Lendified loan it was a life-saver for our company. We consolidated our higher interest loans and it provided my company with much needed capital to purchase inventory. The Lendified staff did what no Big 5 bank would! They listened to our story and business requirements, they reviewed our bank statements, and looked past the existing debt and my personal credit score. They noticed our triple-digit growth rate and approved us for the loan based on what where were going to accomplish and what we’ve done in the past. It was a great experience from start to finish.
What advice do you have for other business owners in need of capital?
Know what your financing options are before you commit to the wrong solution or lender. Also, you should be prepared to pay everyone before paying yourself (I’d like to think the last one paid will be the best paid one day).
Is there any other general advice you’d like to share?
Ignore the nay-sayers and focus on your customer… without them you’re doomed. You need to always be honest with customers (and vendors) and do everything to keep them happy. They are the life blood of your business.