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Montana Small Businesses Loans: Best Local and Online Options

If you are planning to start a new business in Montana or expand an existing one, you will surely be faced with significant expenses, from financing business location and equipment purchases to funding a marketing campaign and paying employee salaries.

Montana
 Tetiana Sitiugina-Babiuk
Financial Sector Specialist and Content Strategist
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Small businesses in Montana have experienced noticeable growth in recent years. According to the most recent Small Business Administration statistics, the total number of small businesses in Montana is 123,419, which makes up 99.3% of the total businesses within the state. Among the most popular industries are food and accommodation services, social assistance and healthcare, construction, and retail trade.

Top Five Small Business Loan Options

If you need a loan to start your business or you want to expand an existing one, there are several options for you to choose from. We recommend that you check various options before choosing the loan that best meets your startup requirements.

This section will discuss some of the top local funding options that offer small business loans in Montana.

Montana Commercial Credit

The Montana Commercial Credit came into existence in 1999, and since then, they have helped customers and vendors develop their startups. Additionally, the credit union can provide creative funding to commercial customers located in more than 50 states.

Since the organization's beginnings, they’ve helped over 20,000 business owners with small business startup funding and they’ve disbursed over $800 million. Montana Commercial Credit focuses mainly on equipment financing, which allows you to buy what you need for your business without exhausting your working capital.

The organization provides funding to small businesses that fall within the following categories:

  • Lodging
  • Transportation
  • Local delivery
  • Construction
  • Agriculture
  • Manufacturing
  • Medical
  • Restaurant industry
  • Plumbing, electrical, and HVAC companies
  • Landscape and maintenance companies.

The process of applying for Montana Commercial Credit funding is pretty straightforward. First, you should fill out an online application form, then one of the financial assistants will call you. You’ll receive approval within 0 to 24 hours. After that, you’ll receive a document to sign. Once you sign it, you send it back to them, and your equipment will be paid for.

Bravera Bank

Bravera Bank is an expert in business lending with a deep understanding of how the business economy works. Whether you’re just starting your business or expanding an existing one, Bravera Bank is ready to help you make the most of every opportunity that comes your way. The institution's loan application process is fast and easy.

In addition, the organization will help you decide on the right business loan that is best for you. The various loans that you can access at Bravera Bank for your small startup include:

  • Business lines of credit. With a line of credit, you will be able to instantly access funds and better manage your business cash flow.
  • Term loans. The bank offers long-term business loans with either fixed or adjustable rates.
  • Commercial real estate and construction loans. This type of loan is ideal for developers or entrepreneurs looking to purchase a commercial or income-producing property.

Southern Montana CFCU

Southern Montana CFCU is a federal credit union that has been helping small businesses in Montana since its inception in 1941. It’s the 13th biggest credit union in Montana, with assets totaling $135.41 Million. This union provides banking services to more than 8,000 members. Additionally, the institution is one of the most affordable lenders in the state of Montana, and they have pre-approval available for customers that can help you secure your startup loan without stress.

The institution will offer you the best support from start to finish. They provide low rate business term loans for a variety of businesses that include:

  • Equipment and machinery
  • Facility improvement
  • Commercial vehicles, and more

Missoula Federal Credit Union (Clearwater Credit Union)

Missoula Federal Credit Union is a business lender with a lot of local funding experience. The organization has been providing banking services and startup funding to small startups for more than 63 years. Recently, the credit union changed its name to Clearwater Credit Union.

If you have a small startup and you’re looking to save money on financing, Clearwater Credit Union is the best option. They offer small businesses a great rate on several business loans. They’re the top local funding option that you can go for. The business loan options available include:

  • Commercial real estate loan
  • Construction loan
  • Equipment and auto loan
  • A business line of credit

Western Security Bank

Western Security Bank is another top local lender that you can consider for your small startup loan. Since the institution's inception, they’ve provided world-class financial funding services to individuals and businesses in Montana. If you want to start a startup or expand an existing one without breaking the bank, Western Security Bank is a great option.

They provide access to various business loan types, including:

  • Lines of credit
  • Equipment term loans
  • Commercial real estate term loans
  • Agricultural loans
  • Commercial construction loans
  • Small Business Administration (SBA) loans

Summary

Financial InstitutionAmount of Loan
 
Interest RateRequirement
Montana Commercial Credit$10,000 to $250,000Interest rates between 3.04% and 3.79% (depends on the type of loan you apply for)
  • For equipment financing, the equipment will serve as your collateral.


 

  • You need to complete an application online, and you’ll have to sign some papers.



 

Bravera BankVariesFixed or adjustable rate
  • You need to email the bank to request for the requirements
Southern Montana CFCUIt’s based on the loan you apply for. You can request for more info at the site.Competitive rates
  • You need to fill out and submit a form on the site. After that, one of the representatives will contact you to complete the process.
Missoula Federal Credit Union (Clearwater Credit Union)$10 million maximum loan sizeCompetitive interest rate
  • You need to talk to a lender on the site to learn about the requirements.


 

Western Security Bank$350,000 up to $5,000,000The rate depends on the loan you’re applying for.
  • To start the process, complete the online form to schedule a meeting with the bank’s lender.

Top Online Montana Small Business Loans Options

Besides local funding options available for small businesses in Montana, there are other loan options that you can choose from. Among these are online lenders, and they provide a more convenient way for you to access loans.

The application process is fast, and you can even fill out the application form right from the comfort of your home. Once you submit the loan application, you’ll receive your funding within 0 to 24 hours.

1. Fundbox

Fundbox

Fundbox offers flexible lines of credit and term loans for small businesses. One impressive thing about Fundbox is that rather than having you fill out an application form, the online lender connects to your accounting software or bank account. It then uses an algorithm that checks your eligibility. If the algorithm likes what it sees, your application will be approved within minutes.

Pros
Automated application process
Fast disbursement of funds
No monthly limits
No additional fees
Low minimum credit score (600)
Can set up automatic loan payments
Cons
Loan amounts aren’t very high
Interest rates can be high

Funbox lines of credit allow you to borrow between $1,000 and $150,000 for a term ranging between 12 and 24 weeks. With a business term loan, you can borrow a similar amount, but with either a 24- or 52-week term. Fundbox lines of credit have an APR up to 20%, while term loan APR can reach 18%.

The Bottom Line

Fundbox offers an easy automated application process and fast fund disbursement, but be aware that its loan options come with rather high interest rates. The best route to take is to repay your loan early to cut some of the borrowing costs. The next time around, you can expect much more attractive rates and terms.

2. Fundera

Fundera

Fundera is another top online lender that small businesses should consider. Fundera also acts as a marketplace that consists of several loan lenders. With this, you’ll be able to compare several loan options so you can choose the one that best suits your business requirements.

Pros
Connections to multiple lenders
Wide range of products
Interest rates starting at 6%
Soft credit check upon application
Cons
Funding can take up to 3 weeks
Unclear qualification requirements

Fundera offers the following funding options:

  • Term loans
  • Business lines of credit
  • SBA (7a) loans
  • Microloans
  • Commercial real estate loans
  • Invoice factoring
  • Merchant cash advances
  • Equipment financing

With Fundera, each applicant is matched with an experienced lending specialist who will familiarize themselves with your business needs and ensure that the loan solution is tailored to your business requirements. As an applicant, you simply need to complete one application, and the technology will match you with various products and will also determine your eligibility.

The loan features can vary significantly depending on the lender you are matched with. Interest rates start at only 6% for some loan options, while reaching 40% for others, such as equipment financing. So, be prepared that you might need to pay off the loan prior to its term to save on higher interest rates.

The Bottom Line

Fundera connects applicants to a variety of lenders and offers a broad range of loan products to meet virtually any business need. For more expensive types of financing, paying off the loan early can help you save on borrowing costs.

3. OnDeck

 banner OnDeck

If you have a small business in Montana and you want to apply for several term loans or lines of credit over an extended period of time, OnDeck is the best option to consider. The lender has several benefits like reduced fees and lower rates for its regular customers. This means that you can get a lower rate the more you borrow from OnDeck.

Pros
Easy online application
Fast approval and funds disbursement
Low minimum credit score requirements
Personalized lending approach
Lower rates for repeat customers
Commitment to partnership approach
Cons
Daily repayments for some loan products
Rate information not readily available
Slow response times in some cases

OnDeck provides lines of credit and business term loans for businesses. With a line of credit, you can access up to $100,000 with a repayment term of up to 18 months. However, business term loans offer up to $250,000 with a similar repayment term of up to 18 months.

The total APR can vary significantly for both funding options, depending on how quickly you are able to repay the loan. As such, with a term loan, you can be faced with a 11.98% - 46.06% APR. With a line of credit, you can expect an APR ranging from 10.9% to 35.2%. In either case, paying off the loan earlier can help you save significantly.

The Bottom Line

While small business loans from OnDeck aren’t the cheapest ones available in terms of interest rates, you can always reduce the borrowing costs by paying off the loan prior to its maturity. In addition, the more you borrow with the lender, the more favorable rates and terms you can expect. Overall, OnDeck offers an easy online application, quick funds disbursement, and amazing customer support.

4. Credibly

 Credibly

Credibly is among the best lenders to consider if you are looking for a wide selection of products to choose from. The company offers seven different types of small business loans: lines of credit, merchant cash advances, working capital loans, SBA loans, equipment financing loans, long-term business expansion loans, and invoice factoring loans. The most popular option for an unsecured business loan is a working capital loan, which works somewhat differently than a regular term loan. Instead of paying interest for the duration of your loan, the borrowing cost will be calculated as the specific factor rate multiplied by a total loan amount. This form of payment makes it a little easier to budget for.

Pros
High maximum borrowing amount
Friendly customer support
Lots of loan options to choose from
Low credit score is welcome
Fast and easy online application
Available to high-risk industries
Cons
Daily or weekly repayment terms
Interest rates can get expensive
Loans come with origination fees

Credibly's goal is to make small business financing available to as broad a range of customers as possible. Therefore, the lender welcomes applicants from high-risk industries like surgical or dental practices. Overall, the eligibility criteria are quite lenient, with a minimum credit score of only 500.

The loan features can vary significantly depending on the type of financing you apply for. For example, longer-term business expansion loans can range between $150,000 and $5 million to be repaid over 3 to 10 years. At the same time, the popular working capital loans cannot exceed $400,000 in value and must be repaid over 6 to 18 months.

The Bottom Line

If you're looking for a reputable online lender offering multiple Montana small business loan types, then Credibly is a great choice. Known for its quick application process, lax eligibility requirements, and useful customer support, Credibly will help you obtain the necessary business financing in a matter of days.

Montana Small Business Grants and Additional Resources

Small businesses in Montana can also access other financial resources to help fund their business idea. These financial resources include business grants. A grant is often more beneficial than a loan, because you don't need to repay funding from grants.

Below are some of the business grants available for small businesses in Montana:

Indian Equity Fund (IEF) Small Business Grant

The IEF Small Business Grant is intended to support a start-up or growing Montana small business run by Native American people. The total amount of allocated funding is $320,000, with the maximum single award amount of $14,000.

Only enrolled members of the eight federally recognized Montana tribes are eligible to apply. The funds must be matched dollar-to-dollar and can be used for a variety of activities, such as the development of a new product line or the purchase of new equipment.

Big Sky Economic Development Trust Fund (BSTF)

The Big Sky Economic Development Trust Fund program issues state funding to eligible applicants with the goal of promoting long-term economic growth in the state of Montana.

Under the program, tribal and local governments can apply on behalf of a basic sector business and be awarded to create well-paying jobs. The BSTF accepts job creation applications on a quarterly basis.

Montana Small Business Development Center (SBDC)

The Montana chapter of the SBDC network is an excellent resource for entrepreneurs looking to start or grow a local small business. With ten regional centers across the state, the organization effectively supports small business owners with low-cost training and free one-on-one business counseling.

Some of the covered topics include business planning, financial analysis, loan packaging, strategic planning, market research, financial projections, and more.

Montana SCORE

SCORE is a national nonprofit organization with local chapters throughout the country. Montana SCORE is an excellent resource for free confidential small business mentorship for any stage of your Montana-based business.

The organization has several locations across the state, based in Bozeman, Billings, Great Falls, Butte, Hamilton, Helena, and Kalispell. There, nearly 200 volunteer business mentors are ready to provide valuable advice and share their expertise, absolutely free of charge.

Montana Women’s Business Center

Founded in 2009, Montana Women’s Business Center serves to provide the support and tools necessary for female entrepreneurs to establish, expand, and sustain businesses throughout the state of Montana.

The organization provides training services and confidential business advice to women; it also is a critical resource to socially- and economically-disadvantaged individuals. While the program is designed to support women, any business owner is welcome to use the Business Center’s services.

The Bottom Line

Small businesses in Montana are on the rise, and more are still coming up. Business loans are crucial for the successful running of small business operations. So, if you are thinking of starting a new business or expanding the existing one, there are various local and government business loans for small business owners to access. Nevertheless, if you’re not eligible for these offers, we have covered the top online funding options for you to consider.

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About the Author

Tetiana Sitiugina-Babiuk

Tetiana Sitiugina-Babiuk

Financial Sector Specialist and Content Strategist

Independent writer, content strategist, and financial sector specialist. Tatiana has an extensive experience in working with financial institutions such as Bank of Canada and Risk Management unit at FinDev Canada. She holds an MA in Financial Risk Management from the University of Toronto.

More about me