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Small Business Loans in Washington: Best Bank & SBA Lender for Startups, Women & Minorities
Small Business Industry in Washington
Washington is considered as one of the most entrepreneurial states in the nation. It is ranked sixth, missing the top five by just one spot. One of the reasons why it has a robust ecosystem is because of the vibrant technology scene. Some of the largest technology companies in the world are based in Washington including Microsoft, Amazon, and Adobe. There were 32 SBA loans per 100k people in Washington in 2015. The figure is relatively average when compared to other states which had more than 40 loans for the same number of individuals. The figure could increase even more since there was a 45% increase in the figure for the period between 2012 and 2015. This means that the number of loans was lower in the past, but some factors have made it rise recently. Time will tell how the scene will look like in a few years although a few other states had more growth compared to Washington.
The average amount of an SBA loan in a state is a big predictor of how supportive the environment is for new businesses. The average size of an SBA loan is $308,000 which is no small figure by any means. This might be a good figure for a startup, but some businesses require a higher amount of capital to setup. Brick and mortar stores and franchises such as fast-food restaurants and bakeries need more money to get up and keep moving. Small loan sizes might hinder many people from starting these kinds of businesses. The venture capital funding available to each group of a hundred thousand people in Washington is about $18 million. This puts Washington in the top ten when the figure is compared with other states. Its growing reputation as a tech hub might explain why there has been an influx of venture funding in recent times. Establishing a startup in the state might be beneficial since companies get access to top talent and mentors with experience in the industry. Most of the technology companies have invested in the area to improve the startup ecosystem so that enterprises established there can thrive.
Washington has the highest ratios of small business to a hundred people in the US. The number was at around 2.42 in 2013 and is projected to grow. Small business growth in the state of Washington was abysmal from 2010 till 2013. The sector grew by only 0.3% making it one of the worst-performing states. Most of the companies that are started in the area include technology enterprises that are not classified as small businesses. The level of growth is too low because it hinders other people from starting businesses in the area. This is one of the reasons why the number of small businesses catering to individuals in the area might remain low. Some of the banks offering SBA loans in the state include Plaza Bank, Heritage Bank, Bank of the Pacific, and Washington Business Bank.
Banks in Washington That Offer Small Business Loans
Here are the most highly rated banks in the state as determined by the SBA:
Priding itself for the availability of a variety of small business solutions, AmericanWest Bank is currently based in Spokane, Washington.
Founded in 1927, the Heritage Bank managed to thrive even it was yet at its infancy during the Great Depression. Today, it has been in the business for over 90 years.
Bank of the Pacific
Under the leadership of Ms. Denise J. Portman who serves as its President and CEO, the Bank of the Pacific was established in Aberdeen, Washington in 1971.
South Sound Bank
Operating as a subsidiary of Timberland Bank, the South Sound Bank first opened its doors to the public in 1999. It is currently based in Olympia, Washington and has helped small businesses with loans amounting to $40.5 million.
A community bank offering banking, insurance, and loan services to their individual and commercial clients, Kitsap Bank has been around since 1908. Mr. Steven Politakis currently serves as its CEO and Director.
Founded in 2005, Plaza Bank offers a range of banking products and services to small businesses such as export-import financing, remote deposit capture, and small business loans.
Top Cities in Washington and Their Lenders
Washington is one of the most scenic areas of the country, but the weather in the state can also be quite frustrating for the residents – it’s one of the least sunny areas in the nation. Regardless, Washington is also well-known for starting and hosting a number of large businesses. The state has a good reputation for fostering growth and encouraging entrepreneurism. It’s one of the business hotspots of the West Coast. If you’re thinking of starting a small business in the area, you’ll be pleased to know there are plenty of great cities to choose from.
Below are the top small business cities in the state of Washington. We’ll also explore each city’s best lenders:
Seattle is the largest city in the state of Washington, it also has the best reputation for business in the state. Some of the world’s largest companies got their start in Washington – including Starbucks and Microsoft. If you’re looking for a large city that has a proven track record for helping businesses expand, this is the place to be. Below are our favorite lenders in the city:
HomeStreet Bank is our top pick for the Seattle region. They’re great at building relationships with their clients. They have commercial relationship managers that build relationships with their commercial partners. They’re some of the best lenders in terms of reputations – you’ll enjoy working with these guys.
Washington Federal is one of the largest banking institutions in the Seattle region. They’re one of the best lenders in the region because of their experience and their capabilities. They don’t have a huge amount of lending products on offer, but they can provide you with large loans for certain types of purchases. They’re especially good at helping you finance real estate for your business.
Spokane is a large inland city with a thriving economy. There are plenty of different industries in the city that currently help the economy thrive. While natural resources used to be the largest industry in the city, it’s now more focused on logging, manufacturing, and food processing. Below are our favorite lenders in the city:
Washington Trust Bank
Our top pick for Spokane is Washington Trust Bank. They’re one of the large banks in the region. If you need a large amount of finance to make a real estate or equipment purchase, this is probably the best lender in the Spokane region.
Inland Northwest Bank
Inland Northwest Bank is one of the top lenders in the Spokane region. They’re a small, regional lender that only services a few cities in the area, but they have expertise at working with small business owners in the city. They can help you get the financing you need to take your business to the next level. If you want a local partner that cares about Spokane’s economy, this is the team to work with.
Tacoma is a former industrial powerhouse that experienced a sharp decline when globalization took off. But recent trends in the city have seen the economy bounce to former heights. The city is also considered extremely livable – it’s a great place to move a family. Below is our favorite lender in the city:
Commencement Bank is another great lender in the state of Washington. They’re our top pick for the Tacoma region because they have the ability to get their clients large amounts of financing for relatively low interest rates. They also have great business bank accounts that can help you keep all your company finances in the same place.
Vancouver, Washington sits right on the border of Oregon – it’s right next door to the large city of Portland. Because of Washington’s low income tax and reduced property taxes, Vancouver has become a top place to live in the state, with many people from Portland moving into the area. Below are our favorite lenders in Vancouver:
Columbia Credit Union
Columbia Credit Union has the most affordable interest rates in the Vancouver, Washington region. The only downside to working with them is that you need to become a member of their union to get access to their capital – though, this is easy enough. They have a great online banking portal that can help you keep track of your business banking and lending from a central location.
Bellevue has established itself as a bit of a business hotspot in Washington. It plays home to a range of different small and mid-sized companies. Technology and industry are prevalent in the Bellevue area. Our favorite lender in the city is listed below:
Banner Bank is our top choice for Bellevue, Washington. It’s a great lender that has a range of different lending solutions for their customers. For example, you can get SBA loans, lines of credit, agriculture loans, and real estate financing. They have a great reputation in the Bellevue region.
Remember, some of these companies or banks are very specialized and may only handle SBA loans for startups or a business line of credit. Ask them about any special programs for minorities or women. Also ask for information about business grants 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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