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Gym Equipment Financing and Leasing: Best 6 Options

To stand out in the competitive gym industry, you’ve got to have both low prices and the latest equipment. You need new treadmills to attract customers, but you need customers to pay for the equipment. A gym equipment loan helps you get the capital you need.

Gym Equipment Financing
Susan Guillory
Professional Intuitive Business Coach and Content Writer

Reviewed by: Sarah Brooks, Personal Finance Writer and Editor

Fact Checked by: Dr. JeFreda R. Brown, DBA, CFEI, and a highly respected financial expert

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Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may affect which companies we write about and where the company appears on a page. However, any analyses, or reviews expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been approved or endorsed by any partner.

The gym industry is an ever-changing one. It seems like every year, a new trendy workout or piece of equipment pops up, and as a gym owner, you want to stay relevant. That means constantly investing in your business and having the latest, greatest equipment.

Gym equipment, unfortunately, doesn’t come cheap. Sure, you can buy used equipment, but then you run the risk of faulty operation. You want the best equipment out there, and a small business loan can help.
 

Our Top Picks for Best Gym Equipment Financing

kabbage
  • No prepayment penalties and no origination fees
  • Easy application process
  • Monthly fee : 2-9% for 6 month loans, 7.5-18% for 12-month loans, 15.75-27% for 18-month loans
Min. Credit Score
Min. Credit Score 640
Loan Amount
Loan Amount $2K-$250K
Loan Repayment
Loan Repayment Up to 18 months
nationalfunding
  • Best Overall for Equipment Loans and Leasing
  • Fast funding
  • Early payment discounts
  • Best for bad credit loans
Min. Credit Score
Min. Credit Score 600+
Loan Amount
Loan Amount $250K-$500K
Loan Repayment
Loan Repayment 2-5 years
bluevine
  • Quick and simple application
  • Funding up to $250K
  • Interest rates as low as 4.8%
Credit Score
Min. Credit Score 625+
Loan Amount
Loan Amount $5K-$250K
loan repayment
Loan Repayment 6-12 months
Fundbox review
  • No monthly fees or prepayment penalties
  • Same-day or next-day funding
  • Best for business lines of credit
Credit Score
Min. Credit Score 600+
Loan Amount
Loan Amount $5K - $150K
repayment
Loan Repayment 6-12 months

How to Choose the Best Gym Equipment Financing Option

There are many options when it comes to gym equipment financing, and it can be hard to know which is the best for you. How much should you borrow? Who is easy to work with? What’s a good interest rate, and how can you get one?

Fortunately, we’ve done the work for you. Our experts ranked the top gym equipment lenders based on the following factors:

  • Loan features: We looked at loan amounts, loan terms, and a variety of different types of loans for your financing needs.
  • Application process: Does the lender do a hard or soft pull on your credit? Is the application short or cumbersome?
  • Interest rates and fees: Some lenders charge fees on top of interest rates, which can add up. The better your qualifications as a gym owner, the lower the interest rate you’ll qualify for.
  • Qualification process: Some lenders put more weight on your credit score, while others look at other factors like time in business and annual revenues.
  • Customer support: We look for lenders who are easy to contact if you have a question.
  • Online user reviews: We also look at what others had to say on independent review sites like Trustpilot.
  • Perks and bonuses: Some lenders offer other benefits, like early payment discounts. We also looked at payment flexibility, advertising transparency, and advanced technology.

Best Gym Equipment Financing and Leasing Options

Let’s kick things off by looking at some of the online lenders who offer financing you can use to purchase gym equipment like treadmills, bikes, weight machines, and even computers.

1. Kabbage - Best for Multiple Business Needs

Kabbage offers a line of credit up to $250,000 in addition to a business checking account and a payment processing system. Backed by American Express, Kabbage allows you to fill out an application in minutes and receive a decision in real-time. We love that Kabbage can handle not just your gym equipment loan, but all of your financing needs.

Pros
Straightforward application process
Straightforward fees
No prepayment penalties
Excellent customer service
Cons
Rates can be high
Requires personal guarantee
Short repayment terms

Kabbage lines of credit range from $2,000 to $250,000 and instead of an interest rate, they charge a monthly fee on the amount you use. For 6-month terms, fees range from 2-9%; for 12-month terms, fees range from 7.5-18%; and for 18-month terms, fees range from 15.75-27%. Rates are determined by your credit score, time in business, and annual revenue.

To qualify for an equipment line of credit from Kabbage, you’ll need a minimum credit score of 640. You’ll also need to have been in business for a minimum of 12 months, and show $3,000 in monthly revenue.

Kabbage Features

Min. Credit Score Min. Time in Business Min. Revenue Loan Amount Interest Rate
640 12 months $3,000 (monthly) Up to $250k 6-month loans: 2-9% 12-month loans: 7.5-18% 18-month loans: 15.75-27%

The Bottom Line

If you’re interested in having all your banking and financing needs in one place, Kabbage is a great choice. In addition to lines of credit, they offer business checking accounts and payment processing systems, making them your one-stop shop for all your business needs.

2. National Funding - Best For Equipment Leasing

 Banner National Funding

When it comes to gym equipment, sometimes leasing is the best option. A lease allows you to borrow the equipment for a set period of time, and then replace it when newer models are released.. With National Funding, you can choose to lease your equipment or purchase it, so no matter the path you choose, there’s a way to get what you need.

Pros
Equipment leasing is an option
Lowest payment guarantee
Easy to qualify
No down payment required
Cons
Leases are capped at $150k
Payments are daily or weekly

With its equipment loans and leases, you can finance gym equipment up to $150,000. National Funding also offers small business loans, working capital loans, and short-term business loans.

To qualify for equipment leasing or financing, you need a credit score of 575 or greater and you need to be in business for at least six months. You also need an equipment quote from a vendor. There are no published requirements for annual revenue, which is rare!

National Funding Features

Min. Credit Score Min. Time in Business Min. Annual Revenue Loan Amount Interest Rate
575 6 months n/a Up to $150k Not disclosed

The Bottom Line

If you feel that leasing equipment is a better fit for your gym, National Funding offers flexible options, including leases on used equipment. This can save you money and let you stay on top of the latest trends in fitness.

3. Bluevine - Best For an Easy Application

banner blu vine

Bluevine offers lines of credit up to $250,000 for qualified borrowers. The application takes just a few minutes and funds can be in your account within 24 hours from approval. In addition to their line of credit, Bluevine also offers business checking accounts, making them a one-stop shop for all your gym financing needs.

Pros
Easy application
Line of credit option
No monthly or prepayment fees
Cons
Can have high monthly payment
Short repayment period
Not available in all states

With Bluevine’s line of credit, you can access $2,000 to $250,000 to purchase gym equipment. As you repay what you borrow, you can borrow more. Repayments must be made over six or 12 months from each draw. Interest rates start at just 4.8%.

To be approved for the line of credit, your business must be U.S.-based and in operation for at least six months. You need a credit score of 625 or more and at least $10k in monthly revenue.

Bluevine Features

Min. Credit Score Min. Time in Business Min. Annual Revenue Loan Amount Interest Rate
625 6 months $120,000 Up to $250k

Starting at 4.8%

The Bottom Line

If you need access to capital quickly, a line of credit from Bluevine is a great option. With their fast application process and quick funding time, you’ll have the funds you need to purchase equipment or make necessary gym improvements anytime you please.

4. Fundbox - Best for Line of Credit

Banner funbox

You know you need to buy a treadmill today, but you’d like to add an extra three in a few months when business picks up. Rather than taking out two separate loans, you can open a line of credit with Fundbox and have access to capital when you need it. A line of credit is similar to a credit card where you use the funds you need up to a maximum amount, pay them back, and then can use them again.

Pros
Access to cash when you need it
No additional fees
Flexible payment options
Cons
Lower limits than with term loans
Interest may be high for some

Fundbox offers lines of credit up to $150,000 with a 12 or 24 week repayment schedule. Interest rates begin at 4.66% for 12 week terms and 8.99% for 24 week terms. Fundbox also offers term loans up to $150,000 in addition to their line of credit.

To qualify for a line of credit or term loan from Fundbox, your business must be based in the U.S. and be six months or older. You must have annual revenues of $100,000 or more and a credit score of at least 600. Additionally, you need a business checking account.

Fundbox Features

Min. Credit Score Min. Time in Business Min. Annual Revenue Loan Amount Interest Rate
600 6 months $100k Up to $150k Starting at 4.66%

The Bottom Line

A line of credit from Fundbox gives you access to cash when you need it, rather than getting all the money at one time with a loan. This gives you the flexibility to purchase new gym equipment, update your gym space, or handle an emergency that may come your way.

5. Fora Financial - Best For High Loan Amounts

banner_Fora Financial

Fora Financial offers small business loans and merchant cash advances up to $750,000, making them the top choice for gym owners that need access to a large amount of capital. You don’t need excellent credit to qualify, and Fora Financial also offers flexible payment plans and early payoff discounts with their products.

Pros
High loan amounts
Early payoff discounts
Low credit score requirements
Loan approval within 24 hours
Cons
Rates may be high
Short repayment period

Fora Financial small business loans and merchant cash advances range from $5,000 to $750,000. Small business loans must be repaid within 15 months, and merchant cash advances have no set repayment terms.

To qualify, borrowers must have $12,000 or more in monthly gross sales and be in operation for at least six months. A minimum credit score of 500 is required.

Fora Financial Features

Min. Credit Score Min. Time in Business Min. Annual Revenue Loan Amount Interest Rate
500 6 months
$144,000 $5k to $750k 10-30%

The Bottom Line

If you need to borrow a large amount of money, Fora Financial can help. Filling out an application takes just a few minutes and won’t affect your credit score, so this lender is worth applying for to see what type of gym financing you can get.

6. Credibly - Best for Different Finance Options

banner_Credibly

While Credibly offers equipment financing, it also offers a full spectrum of other financing solutions, such as working capital loans, small business lines of credit, SBA loans, and long-term business loans. You can use the funds to buy equipment for your gym, as well as hire staff, invest in marketing, and even purchase commercial property.

Pros
Wide variety of financing options
Fast loan funding
Flexible loan terms
Cons
Interest may be high for some
Daily or weekly payments
May include origination fees

Credibly equipment financing loans range from $10,000 to $10 million and are backed by the equipment you purchase. Payments are monthly and terms typically are the working life of the equipment. In addition to equipment financing, Credibly offers working capital loans up to $400,000 and business lines of credit up to $250,000.

If you don’t have great credit, you likely may qualify for financing with Credibly. You only need a personal credit score of 500, annual revenues of $50k or more, and a business history of six months or more. Personal credit scores and annual revenues will vary with loan type, though.

Credibly Features

Min. Credit Score Min. Time in Business Min. Annual Revenue
Loan Amount Interest Rate
500+ 6+ months $50K+ Up to $400k Starting at 6.99%

The Bottom Line

Equipment financing from Credibly is great because the equipment you’re buying acts as the collateral to secure the loan. This oftentimes allows you to qualify even if your credit is less-than-ideal or your annual business revenue is low. Offering eight loan products total, Credibly is certain to have a type of loan to meet your gym financing needs.

Best Gym Equipment Financing - Main Features

Company Min. Credit Score Min. Time in Business Min. Revenue Loan Amount Interest Rate
Credibly 600 6 months $120,000 Up to $250,000 Starting at 4.8%
Fundbox 600 6 months $100,000 Up to $150,000 Starting at 4.66%
National Funding 575 6 months n/a Up to $150,000 Not disclosed
Bluevine 625 6 months $120,000 $2,000 to $250,000 Starting at 4.8%
Fora Financial 500 6 months $144,000 $5,000 to $750,000 10-30%
Kabbage 640 12 months $3,000 (monthly) $2,000 to $250,000 6-month loans: 2-9% 12-month loans: 7.5-18% 18-month loans: 15.75-27%

How Much Does Gym Equipment Cost?

Not sure what you might need to pay for gym equipment? Here’s a quick guide to average costs for gym equipment.

Training Bench $180-$600
Dumbbell Set $200-$2,000
Barbell Set $2,000-$4,000
Weight Machine $1,200-$3,000
Treadmill $1,800-$6,500
Elliptical $400-$6,000
Rowing Machine $800-$1,800
Stationary Bike $400-$2,000

Depending on the size of your gym, you may need to purchase dozens of these items. And keep in mind, there may be a discrepancy in quality from the low end of these ranges to the high end. You want to buy or lease gym equipment that will be durable and keep your members safe over the long-haul.

How Much Money Do You Need to Open a Gym?

It’s important to get an idea of how much it costs to open a gym and make sure you can cover your expenses. These will not only include the cost for the equipment, but also costs for remodeling, commercial rent, payroll, marketing, supplies, and any business licenses you will need to get started.

Here’s what you need to consider:

  • Monthly rent ($5,000-$8,000/month): You can, of course, choose to purchase your space. If you choose to rent, though, expect to pay between $5,000 and $8,000 per month at a minimum.
  • Equipment ($10,000-$50,000): Equipment costs will vary depending on the types of equipment you buy and how much you need, but expect to spend $10,000 at the very least.
  • Permits and certifications ($2,000): Your state or local government may require you to have certain business permits, and you may also want fitness certifications if you offer personal training. These costs will vary, but expect to spend $2,000 or more.
  • Insurance ($12,000 per year): This includes workers compensation and liability insurance.
  • Miscellaneous (varies): Miscellaneous expenses for your gym may include office supplies, utility bills, marketing and advertising, taxes, payroll, and more.

In total, it may cost $50,000 or more to start a gym business and keep it operating.

Gym Equipment Leasing vs. Loans

With an equipment loan, you are purchasing the equipment. Once you pay the loan in full, you own the equipment outright. You can keep it or sell it. Often, though, the equipment has depreciated in value and you won’t be able to sell it for more than a fraction of the cost you paid.

With an equipment lease, you are paying to have the equipment for a specified period of time. Once that lease period is over, you give the equipment back to the company. You may also have the option to purchase the equipment at the end of the lease.

The Pros and Cons of Gym Equipment Financing

Before taking on gym equipment financing, understand the benefits and drawbacks of doing so.

Pros

  • Don’t need cash up front to get the equipment
  • Can pay for the equipment over months or years
  • Allows you to get the best equipment available
  • Helps you pay for other expenses that come with running your gym

Cons

  • You’ll pay interest and potential fees on top of the loan
  • Some loans may be difficult to qualify for
  • Some lenders limit how much you can borrow to purchase equipment

Alternative Gym Financing Options

If you don’t want to take out a gym equipment loan, or if you don’t qualify, there are alternative options for financing. They include:

Peer-to-peer lending

Peer-to-peer lending is similar to online lending, except there is no middleman. Rather than going through a small business loan company, you go directly to the individual lending the money. This can cut costs; but peer-to-peer lending still can be an expensive form of borrowing.

Personal loan

A personal loan is another alternative to traditional gym financing. To qualify for a personal loan, lenders will look at your personal credit history and your annual income. Loan amounts are typically less than business loans, but the requirements aren’t as strict.

Home equity loan

A home equity loan will come with the lowest interest rate compared to small business loans and personal loans. This is because your house is used as collateral. If you can’t pay back your loan, the lender can seek foreclosure.

Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is getting online donations for your business from a large number of people. If 10,000 people contribute $5 each to your gym, for example, you’ll have $50,000. Popular crowdfunding websites include GoFundMe, Patreon, SeedInvest Technology, and Indiegogo.

Get a business partner

Another alternative to gym financing is seeking out a business partner. Your partner may be able to cover more of the costs upfront in exchange for more profits down the line. Or, if your partner has more solid credit, they may get a better rate on a loan or qualify for a larger amount. Having a business partner isn’t for everyone, so you’ll need to weigh the risks and benefits to see if it’s worth exploring.

Additional Gym Equipment Leasing Options

If you opt to lease your gym equipment, there are several companies that specialize in gym equipment leasing. Let’s look at a few:

Life Fitness

Life Fitness offers a wide range of gym equipment for cardio, strength training, group fitness, accessories, and more. Life Fitness offers both leasing and financing options.

Katapult

Fitness equipment brand, Expert Fitness Supply, has partnered with leasing company Katapult to offer customers the option to lease or lease-to-buy equipment. You don’t need good credit to qualify, and even if you have a bankruptcy on your record, you can still apply. Expert Fitness Supply offers products like saunas, ellipticals, treadmills, exercise bikes, free weights, and more.

ELEASE

ELEASE offers both leases and financing for gym equipment, including free weights, exercise benches, aerobic equipment, Nautilus equipment, universal gyms, mats, and training equipment. ELEASE offers financing from $10,000 up to $5 million, and can customize your payment schedule to make large payments during high-revenue periods and smaller ones when revenues aren’t as high.

The Bottom Line

Gym equipment financing can help you start or grow your gym business faster than bootstrapping those costs. Having the capital available to buy the latest technology and equipment can help you stay competitive in what can be a crowded market.

Whether you lease equipment or buy it outright, using a gym equipment loan can help you get the financing you need to start and operate your gym business.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

Should you buy or lease gym equipment?

Both buying and leasing gym equipment have pros and cons. Buying lets you own the equipment outright, though the value will depreciate over time. Leasing may be more affordable and allow you to change out equipment as it ages, though you will not own the equipment.

How much money do you need to open a gym?

Costs will vary depending on how big your space is and local real estate costs, but you can expect to have startup costs of around $50,000 at a minimum. You may want to start small and upgrade as your profits increase.

Do I need a license to open a gym?

Many state and local governments have requirements for new businesses to have certain permits and licenses. Check with your Secretary of State and your city’s business licensing department to see if there are requirements for gym businesses in your area.

Is it possible to qualify for gym equipment financing with bad credit?

Yes, you can qualify for equipment financing with poor credit. Because the equipment acts as collateral for the loan, and therefore lowers the lender’s risk, you may be able to qualify for financing with bad credit. Keep in mind, though, that you will pay higher rates than if your credit was good to excellent.

Susan Guillory

Written by: Susan Guillory

Professional Intuitive Business Coach and Content Writer

Susan Guillory is an intuitive business coach and content magic maker. She’s written several business books and has been published on sites including Forbes, AllBusiness, and SoFi. She writes about business and personal credit, financial strategies, loans, and credit cards.

More about me
Sarah Brooks

Reviewed by: Sarah Brooks

Personal Finance Writer and Editor

Sarah Brooks is a personal finance writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience. She specializes in personal and business loans, mortgages, auto loans, and credit cards.

More about me
Dr. JeFreda R. Brown

Dr. JeFreda R. Brown

DBA, CFEI and a highly respected expert in personal and business finance

Dr. JeFreda R. Brown is more than a financial consultant: she’s an avid teacher and subject matter expert who helps people—individuals and groups in a business setting—master the skills they need to achieve lasting financial wellbeing. As Founder and CEO of Xaris Financial Enterprises, it is her passion and life goal to help others develop and maintain financial wellness.

More about me

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