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City, State, and Federal Loan Programs

Business loans are available from an assortment of sources, ranging from local groups and partners, to city, state and federal agencies. Here are some of the loan programs that are available for Philadelphia-centered projects and businesses.

City Programs

Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC) PIDC is Philadelphia’s public-private economic development corporation. PIDC offers a variety of financial products to assist the growth of Philadelphia-based businesses, or those relocating to Philadelphia. PIDC initiates loans starting at $50,000 with terms that include low interest rates, extended terms, or subordination to senior private financing. Loan amounts are generally determined based on the number of jobs to be created by a project and limited to no more than 40% of total project cost. In addition to financing of capital improvement projects, financing products include working capital and loan guarantees for smaller emerging companies, bridge loans for Commonwealth grant programs, and capital for projects that promote sustainable green building practices.

PIDC Business Builder Loans

  • Working Capital and Equipment Loan Supports small and midsize businesses and nonprofits that need term financing for working capital, equipment, or leasehold improvements to support their growth.
  • Capital Project Loan The Capital Project Loan supports businesses and non-profits undertaking capital projects such as building acquisition, renovation, leasehold improvements or equipment purchases that need additional financing to complete the project. PIDC can typically fund up to 40% of the total project cost (with a maximum loan size of $750,000), and borrowers must create at least 1 new full-time equivalent job for every $35,000 lent.
  • Contract Line of Credit The Contract Line of Credit Loan provides support to small, minority, women, and disabled-owned businesses that need a line of credit to fund contract-related working capital. To qualify, contracts must be assignable to PIDC.
  • Partner Bank Guarantee The Partner Bank Guarantee Program is available to any small business or non-profit located in or planning to locate to Philadelphia that is having difficulty accessing conventional financing. Through this program, PIDC provides a guarantee of up to 50% of the loan amount through an approved partner bank with a maximum guarantee amount of $250,000.


PIDC Project Development Finance

  • Subordinate Term Loan The Subordinate Term Loan provides financing to experienced developers of commercial and industrial projects of all sizes throughout all neighborhoods of Philadelphia. PIDC seeks to fill funding gaps in projects that will create jobs for low-and-moderate-income people, spur investment in underserved areas, and/or improve building energy efficiency.
  • Welcome Fund (EB-5) Loan The Welcome Fund (EB-5) Loan provides low-interest senior financing for large-scale, job-creating projects undertaken by strong governmental, corporate or institutional sponsors. The federal EB-5 program provides an opportunity for prospective immigrants to invest in U.S.-based commercial enterprises, qualifying the investors for residency status. The program is under the oversight of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which has approved PIDC and CanAm Enterprises to serve as a Regional Center for Philadelphia.
  • Bridge Loan The Bridge Loan provides bridge financing for contract receivables, primarily State and City grants. The program is particularly targeted to assist recipients of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) grants.


PIDC Sustainability

Capital projects that promote sustainable, green building practices can be funded with the following PIDC Loan Program:

  • Stormwater Management Incentives ProgramThe City of Philadelphia, through the Philadelphia Water Department (PWD), and Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC) created the Stormwater Management Incentives Program (SMIP) to offer low-interest financing to stimulate investment in and utilization of storm water best management practices which reduce a parcel’s contribution of storm water to the City’s system.Use of funds is restricted to loans which support the design and construction of storm water mitigation measures. This may include, but is not limited to: detention and retention basins, swales, detention pipes, infiltration basins, green roofs, porous paving, and rain gardens. Loans range from $75,000 to $1,000,000.


Partner Loan Programs

Kiva City Philadelphia

Kiva City Philadelphia allows small business to crowdfunded 0% interest loans to start or expand their businesses. Kiva City Philadelphia is a partnership of the City of Philadelphia, local community groups, microfinance organizations and Kiva Zip Trustees working together to connect Kiva lenders to entrepreneurs that they know and trust in their communities. Learn More


Community-Based Loans

Empowerment Zones (EZ) were created to revitalize distressed urban neighborhoods. This initiative targeted three neighborhoods in Philadelphia – American Street, North Central and West Philadelphia – for intensive social, economic, physical, commercial and social revitalization activities. While many federal benefits for locating in these zones will expire at end of 2009, businesses can still take advantage of loan pool lending opportunities. To learn if your project or business is located in an Empowerment Zone, visit the Philadelphia Urban Renewal Website.

  • American Street: Financial and Technical Assistance Center (FINANTA) (Formerly known as The American Street Financial Services Center, or ASFSC).FINANTA offers flexible loans and lines of credit with competitive interest rates and minimal closing costs. Fully bilingual technical assistance is available. FINANTA clients include restaurants, food stores, general contractors, developers, service businesses and non-profit organizations.Contact: 215-236-7000 or visit the FINANTA website.
  • North Philadelphia Financial Partnership / NFPD Financial AssistanceAll start-up and existing commercial businesses that wish to operate in North Central Philadelphia may qualify for NPFP financial assistance. Loans have ranged from $5,000 to $1,500,000 and are available to start-up or existing commercial businesses. Bad credit may not necessarily result in a loan denial.Contact: (215) 232-0516 or Email


Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC)

LISC offers community development corporations financing during all stages of projects – pre-development, property acquisition, construction, and permanent.

Contact: (215) 923-3801

  • Pre-Development Loans / Recoverable Grants with up to 12-month terms are available to pay project pre-development expenses for rental housing, for-sale housing, community facilities, and commercial or mixed-use projects.
  • Acquisition Loans with up to three-year origination periods are available to pay purchase and closing costs associated with property acquisition.
  • Construction Loans with up to two-year terms and origination periods are available to pay hard and soft construction costs for rental housing, for-sale housing, community facilities and commercial or mixed-use projects.
  • Mini-Permanent Loans with up to seven-year terms, amortized over a maximum 12-year schedule, are available to provide permanent financing for rental housing and community facilities.
  • Lines of Credit for operating or project capital are available to provide flexible working capital to meet early project expenses or organizational cash flow needs.


The Reinvestment Fund (TRF)

Headquartered in Philadelphia, The Reinvestment Fund finances a variety of housing, community facility, commercial real estate, business, and sustainable energy products to encourage the revitalization of low-wealth neighborhoods.

  • TRF Real Estate Development TRF’s real estate development activity is led by its nonprofit affiliate, TRF Development Partners (TRF DP). TRF DP is a national leader in community development with broad experience in re-positioning real estate assets and markets in the mid-Atlantic region to create wealth and opportunity for its buyers.Contact: 215-574-5800 or Email
  • TRF Housing TRF provides financing for pre-development, acquisition, and construction of certain housing developments in Pennsylvania and surrounding states for both home ownership and rental purposes. TRF does not finance loans for a primary residence.Contact: 215-574-5800 or Email
  • TRF Education From early childhood education centers to charter schools and higher education facilities, TRF Education financing supports organizations working to improve access to quality education in low-income communities. TRF financing is available for underdeveloped, acquisition, construction/renovation, leasehold improvements, energy-efficient improvements.Contact: 215-574-5800 or Email
  • TRF Food TRF provides financing for supermarkets grocery stores and other healthy food retail operators that plan to operate in undeserved communities where infrastructure costs and credit needs cannot be solely filled by conventional financial institutions.Contact: 215-574-5800 or Email
  • TRF Health Community health center operators can access affordable, flexible financing for the construction, renovation or expansion of their facilities through TRF. Financing is available to community health centers operating as Federally Qualified Health Centers and look-alike, or to other healthcare programs on a case-by-case basis.Contact: 215-574-5800 or Email
  • TRF Community Assets Healthy, vibrant neighborhoods include the presence of viable commercial real estate assets, including amenities such as arts centers, retail shops, restaurants and other businesses. Community asset projects are critical to stimulating market recovery in neighborhoods by creating jobs as well as supporting property values in those same real estate markets.Contact: 215-574-5800 or Email
  • TRF Energy TRF is committed to building a clean and sustainable energy future for our region. Loan products include, construction financing, term loans, lease and energy performance financing, and pre-development loans.Contact: 215-574-5800 or Email
  • TRF New Markets Tax Credit TRF’s New Market Tax Credit (NMTC) funds community and economic development projects in distressed communities. TRF does this by leveraging private-sector equity and loan capital investment into community development projects. NMTC-supported projects stimulate economic growth and create jobs in high-need areas.Contact: 215-574-5800 or Email


State Programs

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania offers a variety of loans and other incentives for businesses starting-up in or relocating to Pennsylvania. Learn more.

Pennsylvania Dept, of Community & Economic Development (DCED)

  • The Alternative and Clean Energy Program provides financial assistance in the form of grant and loan funds that will be used by eligible applicants for the utilization, development and construction of alternative and clean energy projects in Pennsylvania
  • High Performance Building Program provides financial assistance in the form of grants or loans to underwrite the cost premiums associated with the design and construction or major renovation of high-performance buildings.
  • Pennsylvania Capital Access Program (PennCAP) provides a loan guarantee to small businesses based on a portfolio concept. The maximum PennCAP loan amount is $500,000. Minimum loan amounts are established by participating banks.
  • Small Business First provides loans for small business, including: low-interest loan financing, for land and building acquisition and construction; machinery and equipment purchases and working capital.


Pennsylvania Minority Business Development Authority Supports loans to businesses owned and operated by ethnic minorities. Manufacturing, industries, high-tech, international trade or franchise companies may be eligible for loans up to $500,000 (within Enterprise Zone, $750,000) or 75% of total eligible project costs, whichever is less. Retail or commercial firms are eligible for loans up to $250,000 (within Enterprise Zone, $350,000) or 75% of total eligible project costs, whichever is less.


Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA) PHFA offers a variety of programs to assist in the development of affordable housing projects.

Contact: (717) 780-3800

  • Construction Loans are available at below-market rates as construction-only loans for multifamily rental housing developments in conjunction with a permanent take-out loan from a lender other than the Agency. New construction and rehabilitation developments are acceptable.Contact: (717) 780-3800
  • PennHOMES Program These zero-percent (“0%”) interest, deferred-payment loans can be used to support the development of lower-income rental housing. PennHOMES funds may be structured as primary or secondary mortgage loans.Contact: (888) 223-6837
  • Taxable and 501©(3) Tax Exempt Bond Funding provides financing to developers building or rehabilitating rental units designed for lower income occupancy. Bond financing may be coupled with PennHOMES funds to help make the development financially feasible. The suggested minimum loan amount for taxable financing is $100,000; the minimum loan amount for tax-exempt financing is $2,000,000 (with some exceptions).Contact: (717) 780-3800


Federal Programs (SBA)

Small Business Administration (SBA) The Small Business Administration offers number of loans, either through itself or through private-sector lenders.

  • CDC/504 Program (A CDC is a Certified Development Corporation)The CDC/504 Loan Program is a long-term financing tool that provides small businesses with long-term, fixed-rate financing. CDC/504 loan funds may be used for the purchase of land, including existing buildings, improvements such as grading, street improvements, utilities, parking lots and landscaping, construction of new facilities or modernizing, renovating or converting existing facilities, or the purchase of equipment.
  • 7(a) Loans The 7(a) Loan Program includes a wide array of financial help for businesses with special requirements. For example, funds are available for loans to businesses that handle exports to foreign countries, businesses that operate in rural areas, and for other very specific purposes. Some 7(a) Loans for Philadelphia based businesses include:
    • Special Purpose Loans Program offers several special purpose 7(a) loans to aid businesses that have been impacted by NAFTA, to provide financial assistance to Employee Stock Ownership Plans, and to help implement pollution control mechanisms.
    • Express & Pilot Programs offer streamlined and expedited loan procedures for particular groups of borrowers, notably active duty military personnel, veterans, and borrowers from distressed communities.
    • Export Loan Programs: Approximately 70 percent of all U.S. exporters have 20 or fewer employees. SBA has placed a priority on helping these small business exporters by providing a number of loan programs specifically designed to help them develop or expand their export activities.
    • Microloan Program The Microloan Program provides small, short-term loans to small businesses and certain types of not-for-profit child-care centers. The maximum loan amount is $50,000, but the average microloan is about $13,000. Microloan Funds may be used for working capital, inventory or supplies, furniture or fixtures, or machinery or equipment.