One of the most frequently asked questions about factoring is one of cost. While pricing can be simple and straightforward when an all-inclusive model is used, there are variations in factoring services to consider because not all factoring programs are created equal. Here we will discuss the main program differences that affect a factoring fee, also known as the “discount rate”.
Recourse and Non-Recourse Factoring
The cost of invoice factoring depends on several items. One of these is whether it is recourse or non-recourse factoring.
Recourse factoring is generally lower in cost. In this case, a business sells invoices to the factoring company. However, the business must agree to buy back any invoices which are unpaid, for any reason. This type of factoring should only be considered by businesses that can afford to take on the risk of non-payment from customers and pay the factoring company back in the event that customers don’t pay their invoices.
Non-recourse factoring has a slightly higher cost because it is less risk for the business and includes credit protection on customers. The factoring company assumes all of the credit risk so the business doesn’t have to worry if customers don’t pay invoices for credit reasons or file for bankruptcy.
Many factoring transactions will have a reserve; this is a portion of the invoice that is held back by the factoring company until the end customer pays the invoice. Generally, the greater the reserve percentage, the lower the factoring rate, because the factoring company is taking on less risk. Similarly, with a low reserve, and high advance, you can expect a higher factoring rate.
Length of Agreement
When you sign up for factoring, you will generally sign a term agreement which normally varies from three months to two years. Generally, the longer the agreement, the lower the rate you can negotiate. Likewise, with a short term agreement, you may be paying a higher fee, for the added flexibility.
Requirement to Factor All Accounts or Invoices
Another condition that will be a part of a factoring agreement is whether or not you are required to factor all of your customer accounts or all of the invoices from a particular client. Similar to other conditions, a lower fee could mean less flexibility for your business. You may get a lower factoring fee, but be required to factor more invoices than you actually need, which can be detrimental to your bottom line.
The factoring fee can also appear to be higher or lower depending on what’s included in the factoring fee. While traditional factoring fees are inclusive of the factoring company’s costs, some factoring companies exclude these costs from their factoring fee and charge for them separately, so look out for these costs:
- Application/ set-up fees
- Per-invoice handling charges
- Credit checking fees
- Chargeback fees
- Minimum monthly fees. The factoring company might require that you sign a contract agreeing to factor a certain number of invoices per month with a minimum fee charged when this minimum isn’t reached.
- Legal fees
- Error fees (for client and/or end-customer errors)
- Termination fees
Cost of Invoice Factoring
Generally, if the business owner can provide the amount they plan to factor on a monthly basis and average time customers pay their invoices, then a factoring fee can be estimated. But it is extremely important that you consider the variations in program offering along with the stated fee. In order to determine whether factoring provides good value for your business, refer to: Factoring Costs and Benefits.
If you’re ready to try invoice factoring or truck factoring, make sure you work with an experienced and trustworthy company. Riviera Finance has been helping businesses find financing solutions since 1969. Riviera’s factoring fees are simple and straight forward, giving the business owner the most flexibility and power to make the best decision for his or her business.