About Us


U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 504 loans provide long-term, fixed-rate financing options for real estate and equipment needs.  Business Lending Partners (BLP) specializes in processing and servicing these loans throughout the State of Wisconsin, as well as, various community loan programs.  BLP is a private non-profit organization, licensed by the SBA as a Certified Development Company (CDC) to do SBA 504 lending. We are the only CDC headquartered in Southeast Wisconsin and have been in business since 1983.


Committees, Boards, and Members

Business Lending Partners is a division of RCEDC, a non-profit organization that is run by a Board of Directors with a Loan Committee that makes loan recommendations to the Board.  Its members support the organization.  Follow this link to view our Board listing, Loan Committee members, and other contributing Members.


Our Mission

To finance the growth and development of businesses throughout the State of Wisconsin by helping them access the SBA 504 loan program and other resources using our expertise, knowledge, and partnerships.    


What We Do

BLP is committed to business growth and community development by providing alternative financing options for: 

  • Land and Building purchases and/or renovations
  • Building construction
  • Machinery & Equipment
  • Furniture & Fixtures
  • Leasehold Improvements
  • Inventory
  • Working Capital
  • Environmental remediation
  • Limited Refinancing with expansion project    

                     


Staff Information 

Carolyn Engel

Business Finance Manager

262-898-7420
carolyn@blp504.org

Carolyn Engel is Business Lending Partners' Business Finance Manager and has been with the organization for over 20 years. Carolyn oversees business operations, marketing the various loan programs, screening applicants for eligibility and loan processing.

Carolyn brings experience in all areas of finance operations, including loan servicing, closings and reporting functions to various governmental agencies. Carolyn holds a degree in Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. Before Business Lending Partners she worked for Fleet Mortgage Corporation in a management position of its Customer Service/Escrow Department.

 

Janell Topczewski

Compliance/Closing Specialist

262-898-7520

janell@blp504.org

Janell Topczewski is Business Lending Partners' Compliance/Closing Specialist. Janell maintains the compliance standards for the BLP loan portfolio which include reporting to various governmental agencies. Also, she works with borrowers through the closing and funding of their loans. Janell has been with Business Lending Partners since 2011 and holds a B.A. in Economics and a B.S. in Business Management - Finance from the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.  

 

Thomas Van Gent

Credit Analyst

262-898-7434

thomas@blp504.org

Thomas Van Gent is one of Business Lending Partners Credit Analysts. Thomas conducts credit analysis and application processing for BLP. He also assists in maintaining the business loan portfolio.Thomas holds a B.S. in Business Management - Finance from the University of Wisconsin – Parkside.

 

 Karmin Garstecki

Credit Analyst

262-898-7436

karmin@blp504.org

 Karmin Garstecki is one of Business Lending Partners Credit Analysts. Karmin conducts credit analysis and application processing for BLP. Karmin also assists in maintaining the Business loan portfolio. Karmin holds a BBA in Finance from the University of Wisconsin - Whitewater.                                                                  

SBA 504

February 2018

20-Year Fixed Rate:

4.940%

10-Year Fixed Rate:

4.657%

 

 

  Borrower Benefits
  • Lower Down Payments Required
    The borrower may provide a cash down payment as low as 10% of the total funding needs, allowing them to save their cash for other business needs.

     
  • Fixed Rates on SBA 504 Loan
    The borrowers do not have the risk of an increase in the interest rate on the SBA loan making long-term planning for the business easier because borrowers know the amount of their mortgage payments for the next 20 years.
     
  • Long Term
    SBA 504 loans are made for 10 or 20 year terms. Longer terms results in lower monthly payments for the borrower without the concern of balloon payments due prior to the loan maturity.

     
  • Low Interest Rates
    The long-term, competitive interest rate results in savings over the life of the loan.

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 Eligible Use of Funds

  • Land Purchases
  • Site Improvements
  • Existing building purchases, expansions or renovations
  • New construction
  • Equipment purchase and installation
  • Projected related costs such as furniture and fixtures, title insurance fees, legal fees, appraisals, environmental reports, architects fees, survey costs, points on bridge loans, etc.
  • Refinancing – Limited debt refinancing is permitted but must involve a business expansion where the refinance may not exceed 50% of the project costs (other restrictions apply).
 
Ineligible Use of Funds
  • Working Capital
  • Inventory
  • Vehicles licensed to be on the roads (trucks, cars)
  • Stock purchases

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Eligible Businesses
  • Must be a for-profit business
     
  • Size Standard:
    The business must be small as defined by SBA as those businesses with a net worth below $15 million and an average net profit (after taxes) for the last two years of below $5 million.  If these standards are exceeded, the business can still qualify for the program by meeting other SBA size standards based on either number of employees or annual revenue, depending upon the industry.
     
  • Citizenship Requirement: 
    The business owner(s) must be U.S. Citizen(s) or resident alien(s) with permanent resident status.

     
  • Occupancy Requirement: 
    For funding projects that include real estate, the business must intend to occupy at least 51% of the 'Rentable Property' for existing structures or at least 60% of the 'Rentable Property' initially (and 80% over time) for new construction projects.  "Rentable Property" is the total square footage of all buildings or facilities used for business operations, which may include exterior space (except parking areas) that is actively used in Borrower's business operations.
     
  • Job Requirements and Waivers:
    The small business must meet the job creation/retention requirement or qualify for a waiver. The general requirement is one job per $65,000 in SBA funding for typical 504 loans, or one job per $100,000 for small manufacturers.  If a business does not meet the job creation/retention goals of the SBA, they may qualify for the program under one of the other goals of the program found here.
 
Ineligible Businesses
  • Non-profit businesses
  • Lending institutions
  • Insurance institutions
  • Gambling organizations
  • Businesses of a prurient nature
  • Businesses of restricted nature that exclude based on race, sex, or creed
  • Speculative businesses/development
  • Businesses located in a foreign country

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 SBA Loan Fees and Pre-Payment Information

  • Approximately 3.2% administrative fees are financed in the SBA loan amount.
  • $2,500 for legal fees for the loan closing are financed in loan amount.
  • Participating bank is charged a 0.5% senior lien holder fee.
  • Out-of-pocket costs are charged directly to the customer, i.e. title insurance for closing, lien searches, recording the mortgage, etc.

‚ÄčThe majority of the fees are collected at the time of loan funding and financed in the SBA 504 loan amount.  A $2,500 fee is collected at the time of loan approval and applied towards closing costs.  Ongoing servicing fees are reflected in the 'blended interest rates'.

Discounts offered to Veterans!  BLP offers the following discounts on SBA 504 loans to businesses at least 51% owned by military veterans:

Loans less than $1.5MM:  0.5% of processing fee is waived (up to $7,500 savings)

Loans more than $1.5MM:  0.25% of processing fee is waived (up to $12,500 savings)

 

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SBA 504 Pre-Payment Information

During the first half of the SBA 504 loan term, a prepayment penalty exists.  Therefore, it is recommended that if the business wants to pay down some of its long term debt, that they prepay the bank portion of the financing package. The SBA loan cannot be partially prepaid.  The prepayment penalty declines every six months based upon the remaining principal balance of the loan and disappears altogether a 20-year loan reaches 10 years and a 10-year SBA loan reaches five years.

Guidelines regarding prepaying SBA 504 loans are as follows:

  • Company needs to notify BLP, in writing, at minimum 45 days prior to the date they would like to prepay their SBA 504 loan.
     
  • An SBA loan can be prepaid any month, however, it is recommended that if the borrower wishes to prepay their loan it is done on a six month interval to save on interest payments.
     
  • Prepayment penalties may apply. Prepayment penalty levels decline at six (6) month intervals and are eliminated once half of the term has passed.
     
  • The prepayment penalty is an amount equal to the outstanding principal balance plus accrued interest and the prepayment penalty.
     
  • Generally, the prepayment penalty equals 100% of the interest lost in the first year of the loan, 90% of lost interest in the second year, 80% the third year, etc.  After the tenth year, this becomes 0%.
     
  • Upon the funding of an SBA loan, the customer is provided a prepayment schedule which provides the dollar amount of the penalty for prepayments every sixth month until the penalty no longer applies.

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