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ecuring small business loans in Indiana is more accessible than in many other states. In fact, Forbes ranked the Hoosier State as the best state to start a business in 2023.
Indiana’s flat individual income tax rate of 3.3%, low cost of living, and a low unemployment rate of 5% make the state very attractive to small business owners. Lenders are more willing to loan to Indiana’s small businesses. In fact, in 2022, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) approved 1335 loans in the 7(a) and 504 programs for Indiana’s small businesses.
Additionally, banks issued loans totaling $1.9 billion in 2020 to Indiana businesses with $1 million or less in revenue. Small business loans in Indiana are within your reach if you know where to look. This guide discusses the best loan and grant options for Indiana’s small businesses.
Opportunities for small business loans in Indiana
With 534,640 small businesses in Indiana, you’re up against tough competition whether you’re a new or established company. To start or scale your company, you’ll need financing for various purposes, such as working capital or purchasing office furniture and equipment. In order to determine your readiness for outside financing, Novo offers integrations with accounting software that lets you access your financial information and provides valuable insight into your finances. Once you know your financial situation, consider these loan options for Hoosier small business owners.
SBA loan programs
While the SBA offers many loan programs, the SBA 7(a), SBA Express, and SBA 504 loans are best suited for small businesses. With the SBA 7(a) program, loan amounts vary from $5,000 to $5 million with a seven- to 25-year repayment term, and you can use the money as working capital or for equipment purchases.
If you want to purchase heavy equipment, real estate, and fixed assets for your company, the SBA 504 loan program is the way to go. Loan amounts vary from $125,000 to $20 million, with a repayment term of 10 years for equipment purchase and 20 years for real estate.
The SBA’s version of a quick loan is the SBA Express loan program, which is typically approved within 36 hours. Loan amounts range from $25,000 to $500,000 but attract higher interest rates and shorter repayment schedules.
With SBA loans, the trick is to work with an SBA Preferred Lender in Indiana with experience offering the loan program you’re after. Here’s a list of the top SBA providers in Indiana:
- Indiana Statewide Certified Development Corporation (Indiana Statewide CDC) — top providers of SBA 504 loans
- The Huntington National Bank — SBA Preferred Lender for SBA Express, SBA 504, and SBA 7 (a)
- 1st Source Bank — Certified SBA lender and a 10-time winner of SBA’s Gold Level Award
- Centier Bank — Offers SBA 504 and SBA 7(a) loans
- German American Bank — Offers SBA 504 and SBA 7(a) loans
- Old National Bank — Top 75 SBA Preferred Lender offering SBA Express, SBA 7 (a), and SBA 504
Although your Indiana SBA lender will give you a more complete list of eligibility requirements, you must satisfy these general requirements:
- You must be a for-profit business legally registered in the U.S.
- Your business type must be eligible for SBA loans.
- Your company must be doing business and physically located in Indiana.
- You must have invested substantial time and money into your company.
- You must have exhausted other financing options.
- Your business size must fit SBA’s description of a small business.
- You must not have an existing government debt in default.
Community development financial institution (CDFI) loans
CDFIs are specialized lenders focused on small businesses in underfunded communities. The CDFI industry is pivotal in supporting small businesses owned by women, low-income entrepreneurs, people of color, and rural entrepreneurs.
Let’s look at three of the top CDFI lenders in Indiana:
The Community Investment Fund of Indiana (CIFI)
CIFI provides small business loans to established and new entrepreneurs with limited or no access to bank credit. CIFI favors existing small businesses in Indiana, providing jobs to low- and moderate-income earners and new companies with a similar plan.
You can apply for a CIFI loan ranging from $25,000 to $250,000 to use for the following:
You must meet the following conditions to qualify for a CIFI loan:
- Your business must be located in Indiana.
- You must have collateral for your business loan.
- You must have a solid business plan demonstrating how you’ll utilize the capital sustainably to grow and scale your company.
Launched in 2010 by the Flagship Enterprise Center, Bankable has been the go-to SBA-certified lender for Indiana small businesses not yet ready for traditional funding sources. Bankable offers affordable and flexible microloans to underserved small businesses, both startups and established companies.
On top of funding small businesses, Bankable imparts the owners with the financial literacy needed to create a bank-ready business in the future. Bankable loan options include:
- Microloans up to $50,000 with an 8-12% interest rate and a maximum six-year repayment period
- Community Advantage loans of up to $350,000 with a variable interest rate and seven- to 10-year repayment term
- Credit builder loans of up to $500 with an 8.75% fixed interest rate and a one-year repayment term
Qualification criteria include:
- Your business must be physically located in Indiana. (Bankable is geo-limited, as it mainly lends through SBA programs.)
- If you borrow money for real estate, your business must take up half the space you buy.
- Your business must be for-profit only.
- If you request more than $20,000, you must prove you can’t get the same loan amount at your bank.
The Build Fund
The Build Fund is a certified CDFI managed by Intend Indiana. Build Fund focuses on:
- Helping small businesses in the Indianapolis area grow and create jobs
- Injecting capital investments into developing businesses
- Fostering economic and community development in Indianapolis
- Coaching small business owners on how to access traditional financing institutions
Build Fund’s credit amount ranges from $75,000 to $950,000 and is processed within 30 days of application submission. You can use the loan proceeds for the following:
- Working capital
- Equipment purchase
- Tenant improvement
Here’s a list of the underwriting documents you’ll need to apply for a Build Fund loan. Your loan application will go through a rigorous 10-stage process, after which the loan review committee will decide.
Nonprofit organization loans
Nonprofit organizations also offer loans to small businesses, especially those businesses pursuing a noble cause through entrepreneurship. Indy Chamber is a nonprofit in Indiana that can provide you with a business loan:
Indy Chamber provides small business loans to all types of businesses in central Indiana, depending on their needs and circumstances. Indy Chamber loans are perfect for your company if:
- You only need a loan of up to $50,000.
- Your business is new, and you don’t have a sufficient credit history.
- You don’t have enough collateral to secure a bank loan.
- You have fewer than five employees.
Indy Chamber loan amounts range from $1,000 to $50,000, with an interest rate of 6% to 9% and a closing and application fee of 3%. You can apply for a loan whether your company is a startup or an existing business, but you must be 18 years or older and reside in central Indiana.
If you’re a member of a credit union in Indiana, such as Purdue Federal Credit Union or Indiana Members Credit Union, you have access to various forms of small business financing. They include:
- SBA 504 loans
- Business credit cards
- Business lines of credit
- Real estate loans
- Equipment and inventory loans
- Construction loans
Most credit unions require you to be a business member to take advantage of their affordable loans. Depending on your loan type, you must provide financial information, including personal financial statements, tax returns, updated balance sheets, and income statements.
The bottom line
With all the small business loan options in Indiana, lack of capital shouldn't be your reason for not scaling your business as you wish. Indiana is a super-competitive state for startups and established companies, so having expansion capital when needed is a great plus. Take full advantage of these small business loan opportunities and stay ahead of your competitors.
Novo Platform Inc. strives to provide accurate information but cannot guarantee that this content is correct, complete, or up-to-date. This page is for informational purposes only and is not financial or legal advice nor an endorsement of any third-party products or services. All products and services are presented without warranty. Novo Platform Inc. does not provide any financial or legal advice, and you should consult your own financial, legal, or tax advisors.
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