Capacity, capital, collateral, credit, and character are the "Five Cs" that loan offers learn in Lending 101. But to most small-business loan applicants in need of money, it is an esoteric and arduous exercise.
Now is the time to think about dusting off your old business plan as the economy improves. A business plan is required to obtain a loan or venture capital. It is uniquely designed as a sales tool to get financing.