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GCRA SMALL BUSINESS LOAN

Greenville County Redevelopment Authority (GCRA) offers an Economic Development and Revolving Loan Fund (ED & RLF) to local businesses or those interested in starting a business. The program provides low-interest loans to private businesses located in the central business districts of Greer, Fountain Inn, Mauldin, Simpsonville and Travelers Rest, as well as the commercial corridors of the unincorporated areas of Greenville County, outside the city limits of Greenville.

Loan Details

  • Up to $25,000 loan amount
  • 5-year loan term
  • 3-7% interest rate
  • 2-year loan deferment option
  • Require collateral (equaling or exceeding the value of loan)
  • Personal guarantors are required

At the discretion of the loan committee and GCRA’s Board of Directors, loan payments may be deferred up to two years.

Loans Can Be Used For

  • Working capital
  • Start-up operating costs
  • Modernize buildings
  • Purchase equipment
  • Acquire and develop land
  • Technical assistance
  • Projects that are determined to be feasible with the funding

Ineligible Loan Activities

Including but not limited to:

  • Sexually oriented businesses
  • Video poker machines or comparable gaming devices
  • Entertainment establishments without the approval from the city and board of zoning appeals
  • Swimming pools, zoos, aquariums and golf courses
  • Pay off debts

Approval Criteria

To receive funding through ED & RLF, the new or existing business’ proposed project must show how it will help to create or maintain full-time, part-time or temporary jobs.

  • New businesses are defined as any private business that has operated for less than one year.
  • Existing businesses are defined as any private business that has operated for more than one year.

Applications will be evaluated based on the following loan criteria but are not limited to:

  • The extent to which the project creates or maintains low – moderate income jobs
  • Credit
  • Business experience
  • Business feasibility/plan
  • Personal financial statements
  • Collateral and other debts

Application Process

Applications may be submitted for review at any time or until funds are expended.

  • To start the application process, submit a project summary form along with a nonrefundable pre-application fee of $25 (required to determine project eligibility and to start the required business/financial training for new and existing businesses).
  • If Eligible:
    • Complete four hours of training with SCORE or a GCRA approved training program.
    • Pay a nonrefundable application fee of $75 and
    • Submit three hard copies of the completed application and all supplemental documents for review

Applications may be mailed in or hand delivered. Electronic copies will not be accepted. The application review process takes approximately 45 days from the application submission date.

Get Started on An Application

Loan Funding

This program was initially capitalized by stimulus funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). Funding is limited for businesses located within the unincorporated areas of Greenville County. However, an annual allocation of federal block grant funds is made available for loans in the following municipalities: Mauldin, Fountain Inn, Greer, and Simpsonville.

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT LOAN

The Economic Development and Revolving Loan Fund (ED & RLF) is a program designed to encourage economic development activities and promote opportunities for employment in the communities that GCRA serves. The program provides funds to small existing and emerging businesses located in the central business district of Fountain Inn, Greer, Mauldin, Simpsonville and Travelers Rest. Currently, the fund is not available to business along commercial corridors within the unincorporated areas of the County or in the City of Greenville.

Loan Details

  • Between $5,000 and $25,000 loan amount
  • 5-year loan term
  • 3-5% interest rate
  • 2-year loan deferment option
  • Require collateral (equaling or exceeding the value of loan)
  • Personal guarantors are required

At the discretion of the loan committee and GCRA’s Board of Directors, loan payments may be deferred up to two years.

Application Process

The window for loan application submittals is open and applications may be submitted at any time.

  • To start the application process, A project summary form along with a nonrefundable pre-application fee of $25 (required to determine project eligibility and to start the required business/financial training for new and existing businesses).
  • If Eligible:
    • Submit a non-refundable application fee of $100
    • Submit a completed application with all supplemental documents
    • Complete four hours of training with SCORE or a GCRA approved training program.

For questions regarding the ED & RLF Program Contact Rashida Jeffers, GCRA Community Development Planner, by phone (864-242-9801, ext. 120) or email.

Get Started on An Application

FACADE IMPROVEMENT GRANT PROGRAM

The Greenville County Redevelopment Authority’s Façade Improvement Program (FIP) encourages improvement and investment towards the overall revitalization of the Poinsett Highway Corridor in the unincorporated area of Greenville County and within Central Business Districts (CBD) in the five cooperating municipalities – namely, Fountain Inn, Greer, Mauldin, Simpsonville, and Travelers Rest.

The FIP provides forgivable loans to commercial property owners and tenants to finance exterior improvements to commercial buildings complimentary to local design guidelines or acceptable to GCRA and the respective municipality.

The program is designed to retain and attract businesses, encourage job creation and retention, increase utilization of downtown buildings, restore economic vitality and enhance property values. The program is a reimbursement program and shall be administered per criteria in the guidelines, to the limit of available funding.  Applications are considered on a competitive basis.

Funding Details

  • Provides up to $5,000 for projects within the central business districts of municipalities not including the City of Greenville.
  • Provide up to  $10,000 for projects along Poinsett Highway.

Prospective applicants should contact the respective municipality to determine if their business is located within the central business district boundary and whether funding is available.

Funds Can Be Used For:

  • Exterior Signs (installation of new or repair or replacement of legally installed and mounted signs; including neon or halo lit signs)
  • Awnings, canopies, or sunshades (installation of new or repair or replacement of fixed metal or fabric awnings), which could include perpendicular wall-mounted castle banners (without signage)
  • Painting or exterior surface treatment (stucco, tile, stone, or brick replacement or repair)
  • Asphalt paving (allowed only if proposed within a larger improvement project involving significant building façade improvements)
  • Replacement or repair of tiles or decorative pavers (not in the public right-of-way)
  • Replacement of sidewalk or courtyard repaving (not in the public right-of-way)
  • Repair or replacement or restoration of façade masonry, brickwork or wood
  • Outdoor lighting (installation of new exterior lighting fixtures or repair or replacement of existing fixtures)

Ineligible Loan activities include but are not limited to:

  • Vinyl letter signage
  • Portable signs, such as sandwich board or A-frame signs; signs not mounted or attached to storefronts
  • Flags or banners
  • Swimming pools, zoos, aquariums and golf courses
  • Benches and trash receptacles
  • Tables, chairs, or umbrellas

Application Process

The Greenville County Redevelopment Authority will accept applications year-round.

To start the application process submit a completed application form to the GCRA.

Once a completed application is submitted, the review committee will review the application and make a determination on the project. The review committee will forward the application to the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) to review the application as required by Federal regulations. SHPO has 30 days to review the project. Within 45 days, the applicant will be notified by letter concerning the status of the review including any approval conditions, if applicable. GCRA and the County reserve the right to deny or refuse any application.

Application Resources

Façade Improvement Program Guidelines

Façade Improvement Guidelines Appendix

Façade Improvement Grant Application

Employment Income Verification

Economic Impact Report

W9 Form

For questions regarding the ED & RLF Program Contact Rashida Jeffers, GCRA Community Development Planner by phone (864-242-9801, ext. 120) or email.

Property Tax Abatement- Statutory

South Carolina provides a property tax abatement to new or existing companies making new capital investments in the state.

Get More Information and Apply

Fee-in-Lieu of Property Tax- Negotiation

A business may negotiate with the GADC for a Fee-in-Lieu of Property Taxes (FILOT) agreement. FILOT agreements are subject to final approval by the Greenville County Council.

Get More Information and Apply

Industrial Revenue Bond- Negotiated

For small manufacturers, the Industrial Revenue Bond is the lowest cost means to finance a new operation or an expansion due to tax-exempt status of the bond (loan). It can be used for acquisition of land, building construction, real property improvements, and the acquisition of new machinery. The investment cannot exceed $20 million in expenditures 3 +/- years.

Get More Information and Apply

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