Skip to Main Content

Wells Fargo vs. Bluevine: Which small business lender is right for you?

Small Business
Woman with glasses sitting in front of a laptop.
CocoSan/GettyImages; Illustration by Hunter Newton/Bankrate
Bankrate logo

The Bankrate promise

At Bankrate we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. While we adhere to strict , this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here's an explanation for .

 

Key takeaways

  • Wells Fargo and Bluevine both offer a limited range of small business financing options
  • Choose Wells Fargo for SBA loans
  • Choose Wells Fargo and Bluevine for business lines of credit

Both Wells Fargo and Bluevine cater to a wide range of borrowers and businesses, but depending on what they’re seeking, one may be a better fit.

Wells Fargo’s business lending options, which are perfect for established businesses with good-to-excellent credit, include SBA loans and business lines of credit. Like Wells Fargo, Bluevine offers a business line of credit, but it is designed for fair-credit businesses with stable income.

We’ll explore and compare business financing options from Wells Fargo and Bluevine.

Wells Fargo vs. Bluevine at a glance

If you take a look at how the two lenders compare, you’ll see Bluevine has a lower credit requirement at 625 compared to Wells Fargo’s 680. But Wells Fargo’s terms of up to 25 years mean borrowers can enjoy long-term financing with low monthly payments. With either option, borrowers looking for financing under $100,000 and those interested in borrowing more can get their funding needs met.

Wells Fargo Bluevine
Bankrate Score 4.2 4.4
Best for SBA loans Business lines of credit
Number of loan products 4 1
Loan amounts $5,000 to $10 million Up to $250,000
Interest rates 9.00% to 18.25% APR 6.20% Simple interest
Term lengths Up to 25 years 6 or 12 months
Personal credit score 680 625
Minimum time in business Under two years 2 years
Minimum business revenue Not stated $480,000

Wells Fargo business loans

Wells Fargo is a well-known, traditional bank offering a few different business financing options nationwide, including secured and unsecured business lines of credit and SBA loans, specifically 7(a) and 504 loans. These options come with substantial loan amounts ranging from $5,000 to $10 million and extended repayment terms of up to 25 years.

Moreover, as an SBA Preferred Lender, Wells Fargo can make in-house credit decisions, potentially expediting SBA loan processing, approval and funding for businesses.

Pros

  • SBA Preferred Lender
  • Lengthy loan terms
  • Variety of business lines of credit

Cons

  • Limited range of products
  • Personal guarantee
  • Annual fee

Bluevine business loans

Bluevine is a fintech company specializing in providing financing to small businesses. Its product range includes business lines of credit of up to $250,000 with terms of six months or two years, making it a viable option for fair-credit businesses looking for quick access to working capital.

Although its minimum credit score requirement of 625 is low, its high annual revenue requirement may make it inaccessible to businesses bringing in less than $40,000 a month. And while Bluevine could be a great fit for qualifying businesses, its lines of credit are not available in all 50 states.

Pros

  • Fast funding
  • Low credit score requirement
  • No origination fee or prepayment penalties

Cons

  • High annual revenue requirement
  • Limited range of small business financing options
  • High interest

How to choose between Wells Fargo and Bluevine

Wells Fargo and Bluevine provide different benefits, so choosing the best lender may not be as hard for some borrowers.

Wells Fargo and Bluevine offer business lines of credit, but Bluevine stands out as it caters to fair credit borrowers with scores as low as 625. Bluevine’s streamlined application process also means funding can be received in as little as 24 hours, whereas traditional banks, like Wells Fargo, often take significantly longer.

Borrowers with good-to-excellent credit may find Wells Fargo business lines of credit more appealing due to the lower interest and longer terms.

Choose Bluevine and Wells Fargo for business lines of credit

Bluevine and Wells Fargo are great options for business lines of credit, but the best line of credit will depend on your needs and each lender’s requirements. Bluevine’s flexible credit score requirements make it accessible to fair-credit businesses, and the lender’s fast funding and high loan amounts also stand out to those seeking short-term financing.

If you have good-to-excellent credit, Wells Fargo has more variety with its business lines of credit. They offer unsecured lines, an SBA-backed line and lower interest lines that can help a wider range of businesses for longer terms than with Bluevine.

In contrast to other online lenders and fin-tech companies, Bluevine also gives its borrowers a break when assessing fees. For example, if you pay off your balance early, you won’t face prepayment penalties, which saves you money on the total cost of borrowing.

As Wells Fargo doesn’t disclose information on fees or revenue requirements, you’ll want to contact a representative directly to learn more if you’re interested in applying.

Choose Wells Fargo for SBA loans

Wells Fargo is an excellent choice if you’re seeking an SBA loan. According to the SBA weekly lending report, it has a track record of high 7(a) loan approvals and can provide support throughout the loan application process.

Additionally, as a member of the SBA’s Preferred Lender Program, Wells Fargo can streamline the loan application process, expediting approvals and funding, which benefits businesses seeking timely financing.

Lightbulb
Bankrate insight
As of September 24, 2023, Wells Fargo has approved 2,071 7(a) loans, equaling more than $402 million in funding.

Alternatives

Neither Wells Fargo nor Bluevine may align perfectly with your business needs and qualifications, so consider exploring alternative lenders.

For example, if you’re seeking an SBA loan but need access to more than $10 million, Live Oak Bank can approve SBA loans up to $15 million, and it is also an SBA Preferred Lender.

There are also other choices for a business line of credit with more flexibility for fair credit borrowers. OnDeck offers lines of credit up to $250,000. Terms range from 12 to 24 months, and approval only requires one year in business and an annual revenue of $100,000, potentially making it a good fit for startups or newer businesses.

Also, if an SBA loan or business line of credit isn’t right for you, don’t forget to consider other types of business financing options, such as business credit cards, which are ideal for managing short-term expenses while building business credit and earning rewards.

Bottom line

Wells Fargo and Bluevine cater to different types of businesses. If you’re interested in a short-term business loan, Bluevine could be perfect. But if you want a long-term financing option with low interest, Wells Fargo is a great alternative.

While both lenders have advantages, it’s important to carefully assess your business’s needs, goals and qualifications when choosing the best lender and loan for your business.

Frequently asked questions

  • Bluevine considers borrowers with credit scores as low as 625.
  • Wells Fargo does not disclose its minimum credit score requirement for SBA loans but requires a credit score of at least 680 for other business financing options.
  • Bluevine’s lending requirements are a bit more flexible than traditional lenders, but approval still depends on several factors, including annual revenue, personal credit score and time in business.