Waterford, Michigan -- Budding entrepreneurs and small business owners who want to expand their operations could be eligible for loans from $500 to $35,000 under the Oakland County Micro Loan Program announced today by County Executive L. Brooks Patterson.
The Micro Loan Program was created through a partnership between Oakland County, the Oakland County Economic Development Corporation (EDC), the Center for Empowerment & Economic Development (CEED) and the U.S. Small Business Administration. The EDC granted the program $100,000, which will create a $500,000 loan pool. The program is supported by the Oakland County Board of Commissioners.
"We're attacking the lousy economy from many directions," Patterson said. "Small businesses are vital to our economic growth. This is another effort by our county to support our local businesses."
The loans are geared towards small businesses that are unable to get financing from traditional sources. The loan can be used for equipment, inventory, supplies and some working capital.
To be eligible for Micro Loan program funding, applicants must meet the following requirements:
- The business must be in Oakland County
- Complete a loan application and submit supporting documentation
- Businesses less than three years old must have a business plan
- Submit a non-refundable $75 application fee
- Be unable to obtain financing from a traditional lending source. Two letters of denial from banks is required for loan requests of more than $20,000
- Be current on all federal debt including child support, student loans and income tax
CEED, which is in its 26th year, has made more than 300 loans totaling $4.1 million. The businesses created 1,700 jobs, CEED Executive Director Michelle Richards said.
"We're putting an intensive effort this year into supporting Oakland County businesses," Richards said. "This is an important partnership. Small business financing is virtually unavailable. This is a way to ensure loans are available. Businesses could range from retail to online to services and a huge range of more traditional businesses."
Loan applications may be downloaded from the CEED website at www.miceed.org
. Loan orientations are held regularly for those who would like to learn more about the program and the application. Information is available by calling the Oakland County MicroLoan Program at (248) 460-3973.
Loans may be extended for up to five years. Collateral will be sought and personal guarantees are required by all owners. Borrowers must meet with CEED staff once a month or as deemed necessary.