Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. Who Funds the UMLF?

The UMLF is funded by over 29 banks and financial institutions committed to helping enterprising people work toward greater financial self-sufficiency through small business ownership.  The UMLF also receives some funding from local city and county governments.  For a complete listing, click “Funders”.

2.  Is the UMLF a government program or part of the SBA?

No.  The UMLF is a private, non-profit community development financial institution (CDFI) that serves individuals who are unable to qualify for loans through traditional lending sources.

3.  Can I apply for a UMLF loan for personal needs, such as to purchase a car or appliance or refinance personal credit card debt?

No.  The UMLF only provides loans for opening or expanding small businesses.  Our loans can be used for the purhcase of inventory, equipment, vehicles or if necessary, as capital to cover operational expenses.

4.  Can I apply for more than one loan from the UMLF?

Yes, however, you can’t have loans totaling more than $25,000 at any given time.

5.  What information needs to be included in my business plan?

Your business plan should inlcude the following information:

  • The type of business you plan to operate
  • The products and/or services you will offer
  • The customers you will target and serve
  • The methods you will use to advertise and promote your business
  • Your experience and background in the type of business you plan to operate
  • The proposed use for the funding you will receive
  • Your past and projected financial statements for your small business

Your business plan is the most important component of your loan application.  For a more detailed busienss plan outline, click “Business Plan”.  To take advantage of the free counseling and assistance programs by our Business Resource Partners, click “Resource Partners”.

6.  Are there any fees associated with microenterprise loans?

A $50 application fee is required for any microenterprise application.

Other special loan fees include:

  • a 1% original fee per year of the loan (for example, a 5 year loan for $10,000 would have a one-time origination fee of $500)
  • a one-time $25-$50 recording fee for every loan

7.  Who makes the final decision on whether my loan is approved?

The UMLF Loan Committee, comprised of volunteer bankers, small business owners and community representatives AND/OR the Executive Director, Programs Manager and Loan Committee Chair of the UMLF for our “expedited” process.  See below:

Loan Committee Expedited
New Business (less than 1 year producing revenue) greater than $5,000 less than $5,000
Existing Business greater than $10,000 less than $10,000

8.  What steps do I need to take to close my loan once it is approved?

After your loan is approved, you will need to provide proof of insurance on all business assets showing the UMLF as “loss payee”.  You will also need to provide your personal guarantee (and that of other key owners if you have any), for the repayment of the loan, as well as a list of assets you now own and those that will need to be purchased for your small business.