Today on the Rules of Thumb blog from MoneyThumb we have some very good news for private lenders. According to a Kansas State University agricultural economist, non-traditional lenders are becoming a bigger part of doing business in farm country. Farmers are the backbone of our nation, so to hear that they are increasingly turning to non-traditional lenders for backing is a big boon for the private lending industry.
The Kansas State University agriculture economist this information came from is Jenny Ifft. Ms. Ifft spoke recently at the Risk and Profit Conference, hosted by K-State Research and Extension and the K-State Department of Agricultural Economics. Her talk highlighted a growing trend by farmers to seek alternate ways of funding their business. “They are an important part of the financial landscape, and as far as we can tell, they are growing,” Ifft said.
The majority of farmers use farm credit lenders and commercial banks to finance purchases of land, equipment, crop insurance, or other expenses. But Ifft noted three categories of lenders that producers are now turning to as alternatives, including:
— High value, branchless lenders. These are mostly life insurance and private lenders who work with larger clients and don’t have local branches. They may know their clients well and may offer great service. Their interest rates are very competitive.
— Vendor finance lenders. Anybody who sells goods to a farmer sells credit too. Vendors who sell the products extend credit to producers for the cost of the goods. Financing is provided internally or through a third party.
— Collateral-based financing. These are primarily agricultural lenders but are not deposit-taking lenders. Their decision to provide a loan is primarily based on the value of the collateral, such as equipment or value of a crop. They typically invest in developing a relationship with their clients. Often, the interest rate is higher than traditional loans, especially higher-risk loans.
“Some of these non-traditional lenders have been in business for a long time,” Ifft said. “It’s hard to tell how much producers are using non-traditional lenders because these businesses are not always subject to public reporting of their lending activity.”
For farmers, seeking a non-traditional lender can be a matter of convenience and service, she said. “That may be especially true with vendor financing,” Ifft said. “They make it pretty easy for people. And a lot of times these aren’t huge loans in the scope of the entire operation. It’s a relatively small loan that is easier to apply for. And some of the collateral-based and high-value lenders, as part of their marketing, also are saying they are going to make it easier on a producer than a bank.”
Ms. Ifft added, “Another story I’ve been hearing a lot is that we’re starting to see more of the larger, diverse farms using non-traditional lenders. They don’t have conventional business models, so in some cases, it seems like these non-traditional lenders may have more flexibility to work with these types of operations.”
Some data indicate that younger farmers, or farms that are financially-stressed, are turning to non-traditional lenders. Ifft, who just recently joined the K-State Department of Agricultural Economics, has studied the issue from a farm policy and a farm management perspective.
MoneyThumb has many non-traditional lenders who use our product, PDF Insights, to make quicker and more informed lending decisions. Now that farmers are turning to non-traditional lenders for financing, this may be the time for you as a private lender to begin using our best selling product.
Below is a description of what PDF Insights does for lenders:
MoneyThumb Online • PDF Insights
From: $0.67 per conversion
PDF Insights is our enterprise-level pdf converter for large volume transactions. Convert PDF bank statements, credit card statements, brokerage statements, and tax forms into the format you need for ingestion into downstream systems.
- Automatically processes bank statements
- Utilizes IDR (intelligent document recognition) to automatically categorize up to 99% of U.S. bank statement variations
- Instantly pulls key insights and calculations to help underwriters
- Handles PDF’s downloaded from the bank as well as scanned documents
- Outputs captured data in a standardized format for automatic ingestion in other systems
- Automatic reconciliation compares transaction totals to summary information on the statement for fraud detection
Follow this link to learn more about PDF Insights. You can watch a video that explains this MoneyThumb product that so many private lenders are raving about and even set up a live demo.