A microloan is a small, short-term loan extended to individuals, entrepreneurs, or small businesses to help them with financing needs. These loans typically have lower principal amounts than traditional loans and are intended to support borrowers who may not have access to conventional financial services, often due to lack of credit history or collateral.
Microloans are often provided by microfinance institutions, non-profit organizations, or government programs, with the aim of promoting economic development, financial inclusion, and poverty alleviation. Interest rates on microloans can vary widely depending on the lending institution and borrower’s circumstances.
Kiva (www.kiva.org) – Kiva is a non-profit organization that provides microloans to entrepreneurs around the world. You can apply for a loan directly on their website.
Accion (www.accion.org) – Accion is a global nonprofit that offers microloans and business support for entrepreneurs. They have a strong presence in the United States and several countries around the world.
Grameen America (www.grameenamerica.org) – Grameen America is the U.S. branch of the Grameen Bank, which was founded by Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus. They provide microloans to women entrepreneurs living in poverty in the United States.
Lendio (www.lendio.com) – Lendio is an online marketplace that connects small business owners with a variety of loan options, including microloans, from a network of lenders.
PayPal Working Capital (www.paypal.com/workingcapital) – PayPal offers short-term loans to businesses that use PayPal for their sales transactions. Eligibility and loan amounts depend on your PayPal sales history.
SBA Microloan Program (www.sba.gov/microloans) – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers a microloan program that provides loans of up to $50,000 to small businesses and non-profit child care centers. Search for SBA-approved intermediaries in your area.
OnDeck (www.ondeck.com) – OnDeck is an online lender that offers short-term loans and lines of credit to small businesses in the United States, Canada, and Australia.
BlueVine (www.bluevine.com) – BlueVine is an online lender that provides working capital solutions, including lines of credit and invoice factoring, to small and medium-sized businesses in the United States.
Funding Circle (www.fundingcircle.com) – Funding Circle is an online marketplace that connects small businesses with investors for fixed-term loans. They operate in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, and the Netherlands.
Credibly (www.credibly.com) – Credibly is an online lender that offers a variety of financing solutions, including working capital loans and business expansion loans, for small and medium-sized businesses in the United States.
StreetShares (www.streetshares.com) – StreetShares is an online lending platform that specializes in providing financing for veteran-owned and main street businesses in the United States.
Zidisha (www.zidisha.org) – Zidisha is a non-profit peer-to-peer lending platform that directly connects entrepreneurs in developing countries with lenders worldwide.
FINCA International (www.finca.org) – FINCA is a global microfinance organization that provides loans, savings accounts, and other financial services to low-income entrepreneurs in developing countries.
Local banks and credit unions – Many local banks and credit unions offer small business loans and microloans, often with competitive interest rates and flexible terms. Check with financial institutions in your area to explore their offerings.
Remember to carefully research and compare each option’s terms, conditions, and eligibility criteria to determine which microloan is best suited to your business needs. Availability may vary depending on your location and specific circumstances.