There may not be a better time to start your small business. AEDC provides a number of small business development services designed to take entrepreneurs to the next level – including access to loan funds to start or grow your dream business.

AEDC provides loans to qualified borrowers of up to $75,000 (or more in some cases) for virtually any valid business purpose, from inventory and equipment purchases to working capital to start your business. We also work with local banks, Industrial Development Agencies and other regional loan funds to provide funding for larger projects or when real estate is being purchased. AEDC also manages or provides underwriting services to several municipal revolving loan funds, including the villages of Potsdam, Malone, Saranac Lake and Lake Placid, as well as the town of Plattsburgh. In many cases, AEDC uses its loan funds to provide gap financing for other loan programs.

Loans may not be used for personal expenses or, in most cases, refinancing of existing debt, unless we can demonstrate substantial savings for the borrower. AEDC does not do traditional agricultural loans or offer lines of credit. We will, however, consider loan applications for “value added” agricultural purposes. For example, AEDC cannot provide loans to buy land or livestock, but could provide funds for a farm stand freezer.

AEDC looks at several factors when considering a loan request. Like most lenders, AEDC will seek personal information like taxes and ask for a personal financial statement and will seek permission for a credit check. You will also be required to submit a business plan with complete financial projections for three years as well as other information explaining what collateral you can pledge and details about how you would use the loan.

AEDC uses all of this information to evaluate your loan request, but no single factor, like a less than ideal credit score, would necessarily disqualify you for a loan. We are most interested in the strength of your business plan and your capacity to do what you say you are going to do in that plan. Three factors, however, would make it challenging to approve a loan: a recent bankruptcy, an unresolved court judgment or failure to pay required child support payments.

Once AEDC staff evaluates a loan request for completeness and a determination is made that the applicant is a qualified borrower, the loan request is forwarded to AEDC’s Loan Review Committee for discussion and approval. The Loan Review Committee, which usually meets the second Thursday of every month, is made up of financial professionals from throughout AEDC’s 14-county service area. If the committee approves your application, funding can generally be made available in about two weeks. The entire process can take a few weeks – or a few months – depending on the information we receive in the business plan and loan application.

AEDC’s Entrepreneurial Assistance Program (EAP) provides business plan assistance, training classes and one-on-one assistance in starting or growing your business. We are currently planning for our next 60-hour business class to be held in Massena in September.

For more information, please click on the Apply for a Loan button at the top of our website and complete the information form, or contact AEDC directly at 518-891-5523.