SBA Loan

The government-backed loan your business needs.

Understanding SBA loans.


Up to $5,000,000


1-2 Months After Approval


10-30 Years



What is an SBA loan?

An SBA loan is a small business loan partially backed by the government. Contrary to what you might think, the SBA doesn’t actually foot any of the cash. Instead, it establishes the guidelines for loans and then guarantees a portion of those loans. Because lenders have much less risk in the case of a default, they’re more likely to provide funds to entrepreneurs like you.

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Your dedicated SBA team.

With a proprietary application platform that makes uploading documents fast and easy and a dedicated SBA team on call to answer any questions you have and assist you throughout the funding process, we’ve made it as easy as possible for business owners to access an SBA loan.

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SBA loan interest rates.

SBA loan interest rates are some of the lowest in the business: they’re based on prime rate, which in turn is influenced by the Federal Funds Rate set by the Federal Reserve. Historically, the Federal Funds Rate is very low (it reached as high as 16.39% in 1981). If you want to save money in interest on a business loan, you will save the most with an SBA loan.

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Minimum requirements for an SBA loan.

If your business doesn’t match some of the qualifiers below, it may be more challenging to receive funding from our lending partners.


650 or higher


at least $8K


2+ Years

Types of Small Business Administration (SBA) loans. 

You can find an SBA loan option to cover just about every nook and cranny of your small business. Some of the most common SBA loans include the 7(a), 504, and SBA Microloan.

SBA 504

Use it for

Fixed assets such as land, a building or machinery

Interest rate

4.63% 10-year

4.51% 20-year

Term length

10-20 years

Max loan amount

$5 Million

SBA 7(a)

Use it for

Working capital, debt refinancing or to purchase business assets

Interest rate

5.75-8.25% variable rate

8.5-11.5% fixed rate

Term length

5-10 years

Max loan amount

$5 Million

SBA Microloans

Use it for

Working capital or to purchase inventory and equipment

Interest rate


Term length

Up to 6 years

Max loan amount


SBA eligibility requirements.

To be eligible for a SBA loan, a small business must meet certain requirements defined by the SBA.

Meet SBA size standards
Be a for-profit business
Do business in the U.S.
Have reasonable owner equity to invest
Exhausted other means of financing.

Read more about SBA Loan qualification

1. Tell us about your business.

Answer a few simple questions and complete the application in minutes.

2. Submit your application.

We’ll put your application in front of 75+ lenders. Applying is free and won’t impact your credit score.

3. Compare offers.

Find the funding option with the terms that best fit your small business goals.

4. Get funded.

Once you accept, funding can hit your bank account in as little as 24 hours.

The benefits of an SBA loan.

Save money with competitive interest rates.
Lower down payment requirements—7(a) loans $350,000 and under don’t require any down payment and 504 SBA loans only require a minimum of 10% down.
Qualify for larger loan amounts thanks to the government-backed guarantee.
Refinance your more expensive loans that have helped you to build your business credit.

12+ years of serving
small business.

$15+ billion in SMB funding

75+ lenders in our network

400,000+ total loans funded

“The Lendio process was amazing”

Sterling Hannemann
Co-Owner of Seven Brothers

“Lendio literally saved my business.”

Chloria Chandler
Owner of Bobbee O’s BBQ

Dive deeper

SBA loan FAQs.

The first step to applying for an SBA loan is choosing what type of SBA loan you want. There are 6 types of SBA loans including CAPLines, a business line of credit. Each type has its own set of advantages you’ll want to consider—from higher loan amounts, lower interest rates, or longer maturities. 

After you’ve submitted your loan application to your chosen lender, you may be contacted for further questioning by a loan underwriter. Make sure to answer any questions you receive as quickly as possible so your loan application can proceed. 

Typically, a soft underwriting process occurs next, followed by a loan proposal—if the lender initially likes what it sees. A loan proposal outlines the loan’s terms and lists out any additional fees that accompany the loan. Once signed, a more stringent underwriting process begins. 

If your application passes through this second round of underwriting, you’ll be sent a commitment letter by the lender. Once signed, you can expect to receive your money in a few months.


No, but they are backed by the US government. Private lenders are responsible for disbursing the entire loan amount to the borrower, and the US government only gets involved if the borrower defaults on the SBA loan. Depending on the loan amount, the SBA may insure up to 85% of the loan, which equates to less risk for lenders. This reduced risk means that lenders are able to offer lower interest rates.   

When compared to other financial products available to small businesses, SBA loans can be considered the most difficult to get mainly because of the eligibility requirements and application length. With underwriting, most lenders can take up to 3 months to approve or deny an SBA loan. With Lendio’s special application process and dedicated SBA team, time to funds can be reduced to as fast as two weeks.

Any borrower looking for COVID EIDL loans should be aware that the SBA stopped taking loan applications for this loan due to lack of funding on January 1, 2022. However, borrowers may not have qualified for other reasons, too—such as having too many employees. 

All other SBA loans, however, are still available. 

SBA loans have specific eligibility requirements that businesses and business owners must meet. These include:

  • The business is a for-profit business
  • The business has been in operation for 2 years
  • The business operates, or will operate, in the United States or its territories
  • The business owner must be able to prove that they have used or tried alternative financial resources before seeking an SBA loan
  • The business owner has a reasonable amount of equity in the business
  • Business owner is a US citizen or a valid Visa holder

Yes, SBA loans must be paid back. When a borrower agrees to the loan agreement of an SBA loan, they are agreeing to pay back the loan principal with interest.

SBA grants, however, don’t have to be paid back. 

No. If an SBA loan is cancelled, collateral used to secure the loan may be liquidated. After liquidation the loan is settled by the SBA and bank.

The 7(a) is one of the most flexible SBA loans. You can use it to:

  • Buy land
  • Cover construction costs
  • Buy or expand an existing business
  • Refinance your existing debt
  • Buy machinery, furniture, supplies, or materials

SBA 7(a) loan amounts.

There are two types of SBA 7(a) loans: SBA 7(a) Standard and SBA 7(a) Small Loan. They have similar rates and terms, but the Small Loan is capped at a maximum loan amount of $350,000.

For SBA 7(a) loans under $350,000, the SBA lender will require collateral of all business assets no matter how small. No personal collateral will be required. For loans over $350,000 or higher, personal collateral will almost always be required.

If you’re looking for a large amount of money, you can access a 7(a) loan for up to $5 million—if you meet all the qualification requirements.

SBA 504 loans can be a bit more complicated than 7(a)s. Because you must use a 504 to fund a specific fixed asset, a thorough examination of your project costs will come into play. When your loan is funded, the lender will initially cover 50% of your costs and the SBA will cover 40%—which means that you’re responsible for covering at least 10% right off the bat. You’ll also be required to personally guarantee at least 20% of the loan.

You must use an SBA 504 loan to finance fixed assets, although some soft costs can also be included. Examples of qualifying projects include:

  • Buying an existing building
  • Building a new facility or renovating an existing facility
  • Buying land or making land improvements such as grading, landscaping, and adding parking lots
  • Buying long-term machinery
  • Refinancing debt incurred through the expansion of your business or the renovation of your facilities or equipment

There are some cool perks to the SBA 504 loan. For example, you’ll benefit from 90% financing, longer amortizations, no balloon payments, and fixed interest rates.

To qualify for an SBA 504 loan, your business must have a tangible net worth of less than $15 million and an average net income of $5 million or less for the two years before your application.

If you need cash in a jiffy, the SBA Express is the loan for you. Unlike the somewhat slower review processes you might encounter with other SBA loans, SBA Express applications are reviewed within 36 hours. This doesn’t mean that you’ll get access to funds that fast, though—it often takes at least 30 days to fund your SBA Express loan.

SBA Express loan amounts.

You can finance up to $500,000 with an SBA Express loan. If your loan amount is more than $25,000, your lender may require you to secure your loan with collateral. The loan can be used as working capital (5–10 year term), a line of credit (7-year term), or a commercial real estate loan (25-year term).

The short answer: it depends on what type of SBA loan you take out. The SBA 7(a), CAPLine, and 504 each have a maximum loan amount of $5 million. The next highest is the SBA Disaster Loan, which has a maximum borrowing amount of $2 million. 

For the SBA Export Loan, borrowers may be able to borrow as much as $500,000, and for an SBA Microloan, the maximum is $50,000. 

When deciding which type of SBA loan to pursue, borrowers should consider both the interest rate and the term length. Loans with longer term lengths typically have lower monthly payments, but this also means that you’ll pay more money in interest over time. 

If you have the cash flow to support a higher monthly payment, you may want to consider a loan option with a shorter maturity in order to save money in interest, but the maximum maturity often depends on your plans for the money. If you need the loan to purchase commercial real estate, for example, a 20-year loan maturity may be in your best interest.   

Compare loan options from multiple funders.

Applying is free and won’t impact your credit.
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