OUR LOAN PRODUCTS
• New Economy Fund provides business loans totaling $50,000-$250,000 for green, knowledge-based, or creative economy businesses located in the seven far-western counties of North Carolina. These funds are available to qualified individuals who have resided in the region for at least two years. SCORE of Asheville will collaborate with Sequoyah Fund to provide success coaching to these clients. USDA Intermediary Relending Program (IRP) in conjunction with Southwestern Planning Commission’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) will provide the capital for this loan product. EBCI enrollment is not required.
• Business Enterprise Fund provides business retention or expansion loans totaling $50,000-$250,000. Qualifying individuals must be enrolled members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians living on the Qualla Boundary or in the seven far-western counties of North Carolina. See our Guide to Starting a Business in Cherokee (PDF)
• Healthy Home Rehabilitation Fund provides consumer loans up to $15,000 for home repairs. New appliances purchased must be energy star rated. Qualifying individuals must be enrolled members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians living in the seven far-western counties of North Carolina. Application
• Artisan Studio Fund provides business loans up to $25,000 for the construction of home-based studios. Qualifying individuals must be enrolled members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians living in the seven far-western counties of North Carolina.
• The Credit Builder Fund will provide innovative solutions to help build client credit and financial access in order to grow their business and/or personal assets. The Credit builder is a credit-repair loan program coupled with intense one-on-one counseling. These loans include a client savings program designed to apply off and remove derogatory comments and past due bills. EBCI enrollment is required. Learn more
• New Beginnings Fund provides new business start-up loans not exceeding $50,000. Qualifying individuals must be enrolled members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians living on the Qualla Boundary or in the seven far-western counties of North Carolina. See our Guide to Starting a Business in Cherokee (PDF)
HOW TO APPLY
1. People interested in obtaining a business loan begin by completing a Request For Counseling Form. Loan applicants should allow 3 to 6 months to complete the loan application and review process as detailed below.
2. If you already own a business, you’ll meet with a Business Development Specialist who will work with you to identify your business expansion needs.
3. If you currently don't own a business, your Business Development Specialist will help you map a route to getting a loan based on your unique needs and qualifications. You will be required to attend Indianpreneurship, a course that meets once a week for 9 weeks to teach all aspects of owning and operating a successful business. You are encouraged to continue working with your Business Development Specialist during the course. If you have no business ownership experience, you will not be allowed to submit a loan application until you complete this course.
4. If getting a loan is part of what you need to start or expand a business, a Business Development Specialist will provide additional technical assistance on what is needed for a complete Loan Application package, including a strong Business Plan (download PDF now). A list of what is required in the Loan Application Package is provided below.
5. If the Business Development Specialist determines that Sequoyah Fund staff and/or Board Loan Committee will likely agree that you already have a strong business plan and the expertise needed to implement the plan, you’ll receive assistance in completing the loan package and proceed in submitting your loan application.
6. Once a completed application package is submitted to Sequoyah Fund, the Sequoyah Fund’s Loan Officer meets with the loan applicant to review the loan application. The Loan Officer then submits the completed loan applications to the Sequoyah Fund’s Board Loan Committee which reviews the recommendation and makes a determination about whether to submit the recommendation to the Sequoyah Fund Board of Directors.
7. The Sequoyah Fund Board reviews recommendations from the Loan Committee and makes the final decision on the approval of loans.
LOAN APPLICATION CHECKLIST (download PDF now)
1. Strong business plan.
2. Loan Applicaion.
3. A written summary of how the loan will affect the loan applicant’s business goals, regarding production, sales, profits, jobs created, or other pertinent factors.
4. The loan applicant’s current (within 90 days) and previous three years' business financial statements.
5. The loan applicant’s current and previous three years' business federal tax returns.
6. If the loan is for a business that is less than two years old, provide a projected income statement for two years following receipt of the loan and a projected monthly cash flow statement for one year after the loan.
7. Personal financial statements completed and signed for all owners of the business with 20% or more ownership.
8. Personal federal income tax returns for the past two years for all owners of the business with 20% or more ownership.
9. For all equipment purchases and/or minor building renovations, estimates from contractors, price quotations from suppliers, and purchase orders.
10. If the loan involves the purchase of real estate, a complete copy of the Agreement of Sale.
11. If the loan applicant currently rents the business location, a copy of the lease.
12. A copy of the loan applicant’s enrollment card if the applicant is a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.
13. Description of the collateral that will be provided by the loan applicant. Sequoyah Fund requires collateral even if it is in a subordinated position. Borrowers must contribute 10% of the project costs as equity.
14. Any additional information which will assist Sequoyah Fund in analyzing the application.
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