2014 Annual Report 

What You Need to Apply for a Business Loan? 


Almost every business needs some starting capital to get off the ground, and business loans can be a part of your funding plan. However, you need more than a good idea and an entrepreneurial spirit to get approved for a loan (though both of those help!).

Business Plan Basics to Know

One of the biggest factors you need to apply for a loan is a business plan. This isn’t just a one-page summary of why you think it’s a good idea. A great business plan has several components that will be critical to your success in both applying for a loan and turning a profit:

Executive Summary -- This is typically the section that appears first in your business plan. It is essentially a summary of the entire plan, describing what the business is, how it will be run, how it will grow and how it will make money. In a nutshell, you need to describe to loan providers why your business is a good investment. Many do this section last, as it is easier to provide an accurate summary when all the details have already been hammered out in the other sections.

Financials -- When you’re applying for a loan, this is likely the section underwriters and loan officers skip to first. Detail how much money it will cost to get started, the funding sources, and the estimated costs per month. Project how much income the business will make with conservative estimates, and anticipate larger expenses. The most important thing to remember, when you're creating financials based on projections is to back up your assumptions with evidence. 

If you’re already an established business, provide the last two years of your business’s financial statements. If you’re just getting started, provide information on the last two years of your own finances along with projections.

Target Market -- Who will your business be serving? Loan officers want to know if there is actually a market for what your business offers.

Competition and Industry Trends -- What other businesses are your competition? How do you differentiate your business from the others? If there is no one else doing what you’re doing, is that because the industry is trending a different direction? Show how your business will stand out and profit.

The North Coast SBDC in Humboldt and Del Norte counties, JEDI in Siskiyou, and the West Company in Mendocino all offer business plan help and workshops if you need assistance getting yours put together.

How Much Do You Need From a Business Loan?

Asking for the right amount is critical to business success and loan approval. If you don’t ask for enough when you’re just starting off, you won’t have the cash flow to keep your business afloat in those beginning rocky months. For those already in business, make sure you get enough to cover all your needs. This is where doing a little research on estimated costs can really be a lifesaver.



Click on the following links to:

Visit our Small Business Lending Center

See loan details

Try out our loan calculator

Download an application package

See a directory of AEDC client businesses

See a list of our community partners

See our most recent newsletters



Member of Opportunity Finance Network

SBA 504 Loan

Current Rate is



Dec. 15, 2014 SBA 504 Loan

To Buy, Construct or Improve
Commercial and Industrial Buildings

Click here for more info


AEDC Still Serving Mendocino/Lake County  



AEDC has been grateful to have had the excellent advice and expertise of Madelin Holtkamp as our representative in Mendocino for the past several years, thanks to a grant from the Community Development Financial Institution. She has been instrumental in helping us build and strengthen relationships with financial institutions like MendoLake Credit Union and Savings Bank; EDFC and West Company; and businesses like the Mendo Bistro, Reliable Plumbing, Rising Tide Sea Vegetables and Arena Market. 


While we do not have an office presence in Mendocino County currently, we are still committed to serving the area. If you have any questions about funding for your business in Mendocino or Lake Counties, please call (707) 822-4616.