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Find the Best Business Loan Companies in Buffalo, NY

The Buffalo area has over 55,000 small businesses, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration, from cafes in Elmwood Village to shops on Hertel Avenue. If you have an idea for a business, but you need financing, a business loan is a good option. The Buffalo News has partnered with ConsumerAffairs to create this guide by comparing customer reviews and loan selection of 20 businesses and choosing eight favorites from the top commercial lending companies in Buffalo.

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Compare Buffalo Commercial Lending Companies

Types of business loans in Buffalo

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Buffalo residents looking to start, expand, or relocate their businesses in the city often turn to business loans to help them purchase property, materials, office supplies and equipment and to use as working capital. The most common business loans available to Buffalo residents are the following:

  • Commercial mortgage loans: Whether you’re building property or buying property, a commercial mortgage loan can help finance the physical space you need to conduct business. Commercial mortgage loans have terms from five to 20 years and higher interest rates than residential mortgages.
  • Business lines of credit: A business line of credit allows borrowers to pull out cash to use toward business expenses. This helps in situations where you need to buy something that can’t be put on a card. Business credit cards are another option for Buffalo residents. Credit cards are easier to apply for than lines of credit and allow business owners to spend only what they need.
  • Equipment financing loans: Some companies specialize in equipment financing. They offer loans designed specifically to pay for industry equipment and machinery. Business vehicle loans can be used to buy commercial vehicles that you use to transport goods and services around the Buffalo area.
  • Merchant cash advances: A merchant cash advance is a way for business owners to get a large lump sum in a short amount of time. It is relatively easy to qualify for, and repayment terms are based on future credit card sales. When credit card sales are up, you’ll pay more toward your repayment plan. Interest rates are higher on merchant cash advances than on other forms of business borrowing.
  • Startup business loans: If you’re starting your first business, you may qualify for a startup business loan. There are many specialized loans and programs designed to help entrepreneurs fund their dream business.
  • SBA loans: The Small Business Administration is a federal government agency that guarantees loans to small businesses. It sets guidelines for loans that are made by partnering lenders in Buffalo. Loans can range from as little as $500 to as much as $5.5 million and can be used toward working capital or fixed assets.
  • Business term loans: There are two different types of term loans: short-term and long-term. Short-term loans allow business owners to get quick funds and pay them back over three to 18 months. Long-term loans have lower monthly payments, come in higher amounts and can be paid off in two to 10 years.

How to get a business loan in Buffalo

Getting a loan in Buffalo can look different for business owners depending on how much they’re asking for, their industry, their credit history, their work experience and their financial status. However, there are a few things that stay consistent across the board when it comes to applying for a business loan in Buffalo:

  • Credit score: The type of loan you qualify for will depend on your credit score. Different loans have different credit score minimums. For example, you usually need a score of 620 or higher to qualify for an SBA loan, but business owners with a score of 550 or higher may qualify for other forms of borrowing. The higher your credit score, the more flexibility you have with down payments, interest rates and repayment terms.
  • Documentation: Lenders will need insight into your business plan and financial situation to determine what you qualify for. To do this, they will require specific documentation. You can expect to have to provide your bank statements, business plan, tax returns and current balance sheet.
  • Collateral and fees: Before you sign for a business loan, it is important to understand what the collateral requirements are. Some loans require collateral against the loan, such as real estate, vehicles, cash savings or other valuables. Also, ask about fees such as origination fees, late payment fees and prepayment penalties.

Buffalo business loan FAQ

Do Buffalo banks give loans to start a business?

Yes, many financial institutions, including banks and credit unions, offer loans for Buffalo business owners.

What is a good business loan interest rate?

Interest rates depend on how much you are borrowing, your payment terms, your credit score and other factors. The average interest rate for an SBA loan is between 6% and 10%. Traditional bank loans can carry an annual percentage rate between 4% and 14%.

What qualifies you for a small business loan?

Different lenders have different requirements to qualify for a small business loan. Most lenders look at credit scores, the age of the business, cash flow and income, your amount of debt, what you can offer as collateral and the type of business it is.

What business development resources exist in Buffalo?

For resources in starting and running a business, check out SCORE Buffalo Niagara and the New York Small Business Development Center. Both organizations provide informational resources for local business owners.

Buffalo business loan company information

SmartBiz Loans

SmartBiz Loans is an online network that provides SBA and business term loans. Business owners are connected with a loan advisor who will match them with banks and other lenders that are most likely to approve a loan. Repayment terms range from six months to 25 years, and you can apply and pre-qualify on the website in minutes. SmartBiz Loans offers loan amounts from $30,000 to $5 million.

SmartBiz Loans Learn More (866) 283-8726

National Business Capital & Services

National Business Capital & Services is an online marketplace for small business services and loans. The marketplace is made up of over 75 lenders. The company offers equipment financing, term loans with fixed payments and business lines of credit. There is no minimum credit score requirement, annual revenue requirement or required time in business to qualify for a startup business loan. National Business Capital & Services provides loans up to $5 million.

National Business Capital & Services


Currency provides loans that a business owner can use toward specialized equipment, vehicles and heavy machinery. The company offers flexible terms up to 72 months and does not penalize you for paying a loan off early. Currency provides loans up to $500,000 and has flexible funding options.



SEFCU offers commercial real estate mortgages, equipment financing, business term loans and business lines of credit. The company also offers SBA Loans and loans focused on minority- and women-owned businesses. MWBE loan amounts range from $75,000 to $250,000. SEFCU has dozens of locations in and around Buffalo, including one at 598 Main St., Buffalo, NY 14202.


M&T Bank

M&T Bank offers a variety of services for business owners, including business credit cards, business checking and business financing. The unsecured business installment loan does not require collateral, is easy to apply for and has no fees for prepayment. There are other available loans, such as secured term loans, owner-occupied commercial real estate loans and investment real estate loans. M&T Bank has multiple locations in the Buffalo area, including one at 2310 Delaware Ave., Buffalo, NY 14216.

M&T Bank

Buffalo Business Loans

Buffalo Business Loans is focused on financing small businesses across the city. The application process is easy, and the qualification requirements are broad and simple. You receive an approval decision within two days, and you can borrow between $5,000 and $2 million. Buffalo Business Loans offers lines of credit, equipment loans and SBA Loans.

Buffalo Business Loans

Five Star Bank

Five Star Bank offers fixed and variable term loans to use for facility improvements or equipment. You can also qualify for a business line of credit and get money the same day. Five Star Bank is an SBA Preferred Lender. It serves Buffalo from its location at 40-50 Fountain Plaza, Buffalo, NY 14202.

Five Star Bank

Blue Bridge Financial

Blue Bridge Financial provides the funding for new technology, facility upgrades and equipment for small businesses in the Buffalo area. The application process takes less than three minutes, and funding is often available within 24 hours. Financing is available from $5,000 to $500,000, and there are no application fees or hidden fees. Repayment plans range from 36 to 60 months. Blue Bridge Financial is located at 535 Washington St., Ste. 201, Buffalo, NY 14203.

Blue Bridge Financial