Traditional lending problems got you down? There may be other options

Great Lakes Energy’s Economic Development Loan Program might be the option for your business financing need.

The lending industry is worlds apart from what it used to be. In the “good ole days” taking out a loan could be as simple as walking through the front door of your neighborhood bank. Now with more stringent rules and regulations, banks have tightened their wallets. When looking to finance a new business venture or expand your current operations, you need to be aware there are many different alternatives. For instance, Great Lakes Energy offers a couple different loan programs in its service territory covering western and northern Michigan from Kalamazoo to Mackinac Straits.

Great Lake Energy Economic Development Loan Program is set up to provide low-interest (as low as 2 percent below prime) and zero-interest loans to promote economic development through job creation in or near rural areas. It also has a longer pay-back period which is up to ten years. This program has been developed to work alongside traditional lending and applicant equity. Often times, when the entrepreneur does not have enough cash or equity to go the traditional route, it takes a more creative approach. This alternative lending can be a cost effective way of obtaining the monies needed for your business growth.

Michigan State University Extensions’ partner Northern Lakes Economic Alliance (NLEA) serves as a consultant for the loan fund and works with business clients to ensure that loan applications meet program guidelines and are professionally presented. To learn more about what this program can offer your business visit or call 1-231-582-6482.

Michigan State University Extension has had a unique relationship with the regional economic development organization Northern Lakes Economic Alliance (NLEA) for more than 20 years. Recognizing the strength of combining resources, this partnership focuses on economic development, entrepreneurship growth and community infrastructure throughout a four-county region in the northwest Lower Peninsula, specifically Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan and Emmet counties. As a result, the NLEA utilizes resources offered through MSU Extension as it provides leadership to state-wide programs sponsored by MSU Extension.” 

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