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Small Business Loans in Florida: Best Bank & SBA Lender for Startups, Women & Minorities
Small business lending in South Florida topped the $1 billion mark for the fiscal year 2016, according to the Sun Sentinel. With nearly $1.3 billion in SBA-guaranteed loans approved, South Florida outpaced last year’s total by 8 percent, and it was the second year in a row that Florida’s southern district topped a billion dollars. Small business owners in South Florida took out 2,709 combined 504 and 7(a) loans, and banks increased their small business lending by 12 percent.
The three largest counties in South Florida saw the most small business loan activity. There were 420 loans approved in Broward County worth $191 million while Palm Beach County recorded 316 loans approved worth approximately $153 million. Miami-Dade County led the way in 2016 with 543 loans approved through the SBA worth $232 million. All three counties combined saw an increase of 8 percent from the same time last year.
Wells Fargo approved the most loans in South Florida under the Small Business Administration’s 7(a) loan program. The bank approved 605 loans for small businesses totaling $95 million. Second on the list was SunTrust Bank approving 157 loans worth $88 million while Newtek Small Business Finance approved 59 loans worth $54 million.
In North Florida, small business owners took out 1,128 loans through the SBA’s 7(a) and 504 programs totaling $571 million, according to the Small Business Administration. The top small business lender was Florida 1st Capital Finance, which approved 105 loans worth close to $67 million. SunTrust Bank approved 63 loans worth nearly $32 million while small business owners took out 217 loans from Wells Fargo Bank worth approximately $29 million.
The SBA’s 7(a) loan program helps small business owners purchase machinery, inventory and equipment. Small business owners can also use the financing to repay debt, build new buildings or renovate existing buildings. Some small business owners in Florida use the funds to acquire existing businesses or purchase land.
Banks in Florida That Offer Small Business Loans
Below are the six best banks for you to get small business loans:
Before being acquired by Seacoast National Bank, BankFIRST Inc. offered small business-centric banking products, most of which are lending services. You can still get the same services from Seacoast National Bank today.
Convenience is key for Fidelity Bank. Operating in convenient locations and having highly hands-on type of customer service, its employees will help you get the right loan product for your small business.
Founded in 2001 in Georgia, Guardian Bank has since branched out to Florida. It offers personal and commercial financial services and is a subsidiary of WB&T Bankshares, Inc.
American Enterprise Bank
In fulfilling its mission, American Enterprise Bank offers personal and commercial banking products that respond to the needs of its customers, individuals and businesses alike.
Platinum Bank of Brandon
While it has merged with CenterState Bank just this month, Platinum Bank is confident that its values and identity would not be gone with the merger. With CenterState, it is now the third largest community bank in Tampa Bay.
Community Southern Bank
Founded in 2006, Community Southern Bank offers personal and business banking services and continues to do so after its merger with Sunshine Bancorp, Inc.
Top Cities in Florida and Their Lenders
Florida is one of the most populated states in the country for a reason: Its beautiful coastlines and favorable tax laws attract people from across the nation. If you’re thinking of starting a new small business, Florida is one of the best places in the nation to do so. You have a range of large cities to choose from when it comes to deciding on a location. In addition, each of these cities has personal lenders that can provide your small business with working capital loans to make it to the next level. Below we’ll explore Florida’s top cities and the local lenders in each of them!
Jacksonville, Florida is the largest city in the state of Florida. The area is well known for its medical industry – the Jacksonville medical center performs groundbreaking research. If you’re looking for a large city to start a new business in, this is one of your top options in Florida.
Resolute Commercial Capital
Resolute Commercial Capital is a lender that only provides financing to small business owners. They have a local presence in Jacksonville – they’re well-aware of how the local economy works. They’re a good choice if you want a commercial lending expert.
Alive Credit Union
Alive Credit Union is a lender throughout the South of the country. They have a large influence in the Jacksonville small business loan market. They’re definitely a partner worth considering.
Miami, Florida is one of the most famous cities in the country. It attracts interest from around the world due to its nightlife, condos, and ocean views. Miami is one of the best places in Florida to start a business, but the cost of living is high. Below are the top Miami small business lenders:
GoKapital is a local Miami lender that provides quick business loans to their clients. If you’re looking to get finance fast, this is probably the lender that you should choose.
Greenbox Capital is another local Miami lender that has a reputation for providing quick capital to their customer base. If you’re looking for a lender that can get you money fast, this is another good option in the Miami area.
Tampa is a large bayside city in the state of Florida. The region is well-known for its insurance and shipping industries. Tampa is a much cheaper place to start a business than Miami. Below are the top lenders in the area:
USAmeriBank is our top pick in the Tampa region. They have experience working with large and small businesses to help them obtain the financing they need. They have the strength of a large lender.
LiftFund is a national micro lender that also happens to have a large presence in the Tampa region. While they’re a great lender, they only have very small business loans.
Orlando is home to the Disney World Resort. If you’re looking to capitalize on the tourism industry, this is one of the best places to start a business. Below is our favorite lender in the region:
Fairwinds Credit Union
Fairwinds Credit Union is a large credit union with a significant customer base in the Orlando region. We highly recommend this lender for people opening new businesses in Orlando.
St. Petersburg, Florida
St. Petersburg is considered the luxury extension of Tampa. If you’re looking to start a business in an upmarket area, this is also a great place to choose. Check out our favorite St. Petersburg lender below:
GulfCoast Business Finance
GulfCoast Business Finance is a local lender that is headquartered in St. Petersburg. They have the deepest understanding of the local economy out of any of the lenders in the area.
Hialeah is often considered an extension of Miami. If you’re looking to start a business in the area, this is a much cheaper alternative than central Miami. Below is our favorite Hialeah business lender:
OneMain Financial is a large commercial lender that provides small business loans to their client base. They have a local office right in the middle of Hialeah.
While not nearly the largest city in Florida, Tallahassee happens to be the capital of the state. Much of the local economy is driven by government workers, but there’s still plenty of space for small business owners. Check out our favorite local lender below:
Prime Meridian Bank
Prime Meridian Bank is the local lender we recommend in the Tallahassee, Florida area. They’re experts on the economy in Tallahassee – they’re a great partner to have in the area!
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Fort Lauderdale is another coastal city in the state of Florida. It contains beautiful beaches and golf course throughout the surrounding areas. If you’re thinking of starting business in the city, our favorite lender is provided below:
Like Hialeah, OneMain Financial is the top lender the Fort Lauderdale region. They specialize in personal lending – but they can get you large personal loans which can be used towards your small business.
Remember, some of these companies or banks are very specialized and may only handle SBA loans or a business line of credit. Ask them about any special programs for minorities or women. Also ask for information about business grants for startups if that interest you. If you bad credit don’t worry as there still may be other alternative lenders willing to work with you.
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