Things haven't been good in the U.S. financial sector for about five years, but small business owners have continued to persevere. For those just joining the marketplace, expecting a difficult process and possible failure seem to be par for the course, but there are still eligible entities and banks looking to help with commercial loan applications. Knowing where to look and what alternative options are avialable at the start of the process can alleviate stress.

Look everywhere

Before you go to the bank and fill out all that paperwork, look elsewhere for financing. Friends and family may be helpful, but it can also be difficult discussing money or getting in deep with in-laws. Crowdfunding has become popular online, with resources like Kickstarter helping fuel dreams across the country by small monetary increments. You may even want to take a look at personal bank accounts to see if you have enough funds on your own.

Some institutions offer special grant programs and financial assistance for businesses in specific sectors, WINK News wrote. The source stated that a Florida firm received $250,000 for its medical research and development from a LivingSocial contest. Government-backed grants are often more stable and easier to obtain, never need to be repaid and offer an online search interface to find dozens of current programs at a time.

Explore franchising

These business models tend to be more stable and familiar to banks, so when requesting a commercial loan, the financier knows that certain structure and business plans are already preset. Some franchises even offer specific loan and repayment programs through internal processes, making it much easier to receive funding.

Rick Kimsey told The Republic that teaming up with Doctors Express made it far simpler to obtain a private practice after the market collapse in 2008 left him with no office. The building carries a corporate moniker, but despite some trepidation about joining a bigger entity, Kimsey has experienced success with the endeavor. Such strategies allow small business owners to pursue self-employment dreams with more certainty than starting from square one, and with a franchise's success to draw on, brand identity and firm financial plans make it easier to broker with banks.