As a business loan officer, credit analyst, CPA, business broker, or any other service provider that works with businesses such as architects and developers, knowing about available programs that assist businesses, and particularly those that help businesses access the capital they need to grow and be successful, can be one of the most valuable services you can provide to your clients. For lenders and underwriters in particular, knowing about local, state and federal loan programs that can partner with you and your institution to provide capital to small businesses can help you secure underwriting approval and “close a deal.”
The resources on this page provide a brief overview of City resources and programs that can help you, the lender, help your business clients, and in doing so learn how we can all work together to help businesses be successful in our community today!
Business Equity Loan Program
Charlotte’s Business Equity Loan Program
is a geographically based gap financing tool that works in participation with primary financing from a traditional bank. In many ways the program is comparable to a SBA 504 loan (except that Charlotte’s program can be used for virtually any business purpose including working capital) and the benefits to both the lender and the borrower are similar. Traditional banks considering a prospective loan request benefit from utilizing this program by, among other things, reducing their bank’s credit exposure, which not only helps the lender get their respective loan approved, but also helps the lender retain a valuable customer and ultimately helps their business client obtain the capital they need to grow and succeed in our community. Utilizing the Business Equity Loan Program can also improve the business’s cash flow position, thereby allowing the business owner to retain funds within their business for working capital purposes. In addition, projects can often meet a lender’s Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) compliance requirements.
Brownfield Grant Programs
Charlotte’s Brownfield Programs
provide funds for assessment and remediation activities of sites in targeted areas suspected of environmental contamination. Lenders considering loan requests that involve brownfield sites may be able to consider these grant funds as a ‘source of repayment’ or ‘source of funds’ for projects they are considering funding, thereby improving the underwriting ratios of the project.
Small Business Enterprise Loan Fund
The Small Business Enterprise Loan Fund
is a partnership between the City of Charlotte, Self Help, and other major corporations and foundations in the Charlotte area. Traditional lenders considering small business loan requests in the Charlotte region that are just under their institution’s normal underwriting guidelines can refer those clients to the Small Business Enterprise Loan Fund as a possible source of funding. Knowing about this resource not only benefits your client when they are seeking financing that you and your institution are unable to provide, but also helps you retain your overall banking relationship with your valuable customers.
To learn more about the benefits of state and federal loan programs, visit the Financing a Business page
Corridor Revitalization Programs
Charlotte’s facade improvement
and security grant
programs provide matching funds for storefront architectural renovations and security improvements to eligible commercial buildings in targeted areas. Lenders considering loan requests that involve the upfit of commercial property may be able to consider these grant funds as a ‘source of repayment’ or ‘source of funds’ for the loan request they are considering. This, in turn, can improve the project underwriting, and particularly when it comes to assessing the ability of the business to service the proposed debt.