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Having Trouble Getting a Business Loan?

By: Stacy Yu

During the most recent MAFCU Small Business University session, United States Senator and member of the U.S. Congress's Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, Ben Cardin*, discussed small business in Maryland and its importance to the health of our economy.  The majority of jobs created in the United States are generated by small businesses and Maryland, alone, is home to over 50,000 small businesses.  Many of these businesses are funded by personal loans from friends and family, or as self-funded endeavors.  However, for entrepreneurs seeking help from financial institutions, securing a business loan for a start-up can be challenging.

If you are in need of a business loan, here are a few tips to help you get the funding you need to grow your small business.

1. Build a Business Plan

Companies that show promise of financial growth have the greatest chance of securing loans.  For start-ups, the lack of historic financial data makes it difficult to show lenders evidence of progression.  Therefore, developing a sound business plan is the most important step in securing a loan, as well as building a successful company.  When developing your business plan, it is important to provide evidence of market research and a well-thought out growth plan. 

Information to cover in your business plan include:

  • Executive Summary of Your Business

  • Company Description with Mission & Vision Statements

  • Market Analysis

    • Current Industry Status & Trends

    • Target Market Analysis

    • Competitive Analysis

    • Strength, Weakness, Opportunities & Threat Analysis

  • Organizational Structure & Management Team

  • Product or Service Definition

    • Identify Product Benefits to the Customer, Differentiating Factors

    • Product Development Strategy

  • Marketing & Sales Strategy

  • Financial Analysis

    • Cost Analysis

    • Financial Projections

  • Funding Request

  • Appendix with supporting data, documentation and charts

For more information on how to develop a business plan, go to

2. Know Your Credit Status

For those with good credit, being approved for a business loan from a financial institution can be a much easier process than for those with not so favorable credit.  However, if you have a poor credit status, there is still hope.  The Small Business Administration (SBA) has developed government-guaranteed loans that help small businesses who might not qualify for conventional financing get the funds they need.  An SBA loan can also make it possible for a business to qualify for a loan with more flexible terms than conventional loan options, preserving working capital for other essential business needs.  SBA loans are for businesses that are owner-operated, for-profit, organized as a sole proprietorship, corporation, or professional partnership, and are unable to secure other credit under reasonable terms.

MAFCU offers several different SBA loan programs, including:

  • SBA Express

  • SBA 7(a) Term Loans

  • SBA 504 Term Loans

  • SBA Capline Program

CLICK HERE for more information about MAFCU's SBA Loans.

3. Utilize Your Resources

If you continue to have difficulty securing a business loan, ask for help.  The Small Business Administration (SBA) (, as well as the Montgomery County Department of Economic Development (, offer one-on-one assistance to business owners in need of help navigating the start-up process.  Take advantage of these programs.  Doing so can be a great asset for your company.

Mid-Atlantic Federal Credit Union is an SBA lender and can work with you to determine what resources and lending solutions will best suit your situation.  To request more information, contact a MAFCU SBA specialist.


*To view Senator Ben Cardin's MAFCU SBU presentation in its entirety, visit:

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