Do you have a business emergency?
Are you looking to grow your business?
Want to invest in new technology?
Thinking about selling your business?
Interested in purchasing or starting a business?
Start Up or Purchase
Community Futures provides entrepreneurs and would-be entrepreneurs with confidential business coaching and support on how to finance a startup or a purchase. We have a variety of programs directly related to starting and purchasing a business. Our success speaks for itself!
The Numbers Don’t Lie
During the past 34 years, we have authorized loans for over $30.6 million to over 773 businesses, creating or maintaining 3,412+ jobs.
Growing your business often requires extra money to make it to the next level. Unlike most financial institutions, we are not a formula lender; instead, we assess every business venture based on its own merit.
Community Futures has the ability to explore financing for businesses that are unable to secure funding under reasonable terms and conditions from traditional lenders. In some cases, we may be prepared to consider a position of higher risk than other lenders.
Specialized Loans Program
Let’s face it, business is changing and becoming more and more competitive! New technology, whether you build it yourself or purchase it, costs money… and we are here to help.
We take the following into account when you apply for assistance:
- economic viability of the business
- assessment of management skills and abilities
- ability of the business to repay the loan
- reasonable personal financial investment in the project
- loan security
- creation or maintenance of jobs
- location of the business in the Fraser Fort George region
- loan purposes
The Community Futures Loan Program can help to finance any viable business venture up to a maximum of $150,000 for the following purposes:
- equipment purchases
- real estate purchases
- change of ownership
- construction costs
- additional working capital
- business sustainability
Important: Please contact our office for initial discussions concerning your application.
- Develop a business plan, including financial projections.
- Complete the required loan application form.
- Submit both the completed application package and your business plan to the Community Futures office. Ensure that the application package is signed by yourself (the applicant/s) and your spouse, married or common law partner/s.
- A credit check will be conducted on all applicant/s and their spouse/s.
- Attend an interview with Community Futures loans staff to discuss your business plan.
- Supply any additional information that may be required.
- Loans under $25,000 are assessed by Community Futures loans staff for approval. Applications for these loans can be submitted at any time.
- Loans for more than $25,000 are presented to the Loans Committee (comprised of local volunteer directors) for approval. Accordingly you will be advised of the date of our loan meeting and by when we need to have received your application and support information. Upon approval, we will contact you with information concerning the decision.
- Our “Letter of Intent” outlining the terms and conditions of the loan will be prepared for your immediate review.
- Upon your acceptance of the terms and conditions set out in the offer, we will commence preparation of the legal security documents.
- Once the security documentation is completed and executed by you, we will be in a position to disburse the funds.
Business Loan FAQs
What is your interest rate?
Interest rates can be as low as Bank of Canada prime plus 3%, depending on the level of risk involved with the loan.
What makes CFDC different from a regular lending institution?
Community Futures is approachable and willing to listen to your idea. We are usually willing to take more risk than a conventional lender. Our criteria are not based on a formula; we look at the whole plan. We are able to tailor the monthly payments according to the cash flow to allow for reduced payments during slow periods if your business is seasonal. Additionally, decisions are made locally rather than at a head office in a major city centre.
Do you require security?
In reviewing the loan application, the amount of security pledged will be taken into consideration. The greater the security pledge the more favourable the application and the interest rate assigned to an approved loan.
How do I apply?
Contact our loans department for initial discussions concerning your needs. Application packages are available from the Community Futures office, or download loan application here. A detailed checklist of requirements is included with the loan application.
Do I have to be on EI to apply for a loan?
No, you do not have to be on EI to apply for a loan.
What is the minimum and/or maximum loan amount?
Approval amount varies depending on the needs of the business. The maximum amount is $150,000.00.
How long do I have to pay back the loan?
The term of the loan depends on the nature of the business, cash flow and the amount of the loan. Payments can be amortized over a longer period in order to reduce the monthly payment amount.
Do I have to submit a full business plan?
Applicants with new businesses will complete a business plan, including financial projections. Applicants with existing businesses provide an outline of the proposal and the benefit it will have on the business.
How long will it take before I can get money?
Funds will be made available to the applicant between 1 to 4 weeks after loan approval, depending on the security required.
For additional information, please contact our Business Analysts, Freddy Padilla or Sherri Flavel at firstname.lastname@example.org
Loans Approval & Appeal Policy
The purpose of this policy is to provide clarity on:
- authorities for loan approvals at CF FFG
- the right of applicants to appeals on loan decisions
- a process for loan applicants who have reason to believe they have grounds to appeal the decision on their loan, at any of the identified levels. The appeal must be of sufficient substance to warrant a review of a final decision.
Loan Approval Authorities
The Board of Directors for Community Futures Development Corporation of Fraser Fort George (CF FFG) delegates authority to:
- the General Manager of CF FFG to review and approve loan applications up to $10,000, and
- the Finance and Lending Committee to review and approve loan applications between $10,000 and $150,000.
Businesses seeking loans over $150,000 will have their application reviewed by the Finance and Lending Committee who will:
- approve financing up to $150,000 from CF FFG and recommend that the remaining amount of financing be secured through loan syndication with fellow Community Futures; or
- approve financing up to $150,000 from CF FFG and recommend that the remaining amount of the financing be leveraged through a traditional financial institution or alternative financing arrangements; or
- Make a recommendation to the Board of Directors to finance the full amount of the loan application beyond $150,000
The Board will only review loans over $150,000 that are recommended to them by the Finance and Lending Committee.
Appeals and Redress
Any applicant who has had his or her loan request refused by the relevant CF FFG authority for that loan value may appeal that refusal. Individuals resubmitting their loan request with revisions may not appeal the original decision.
All requests for redress on a loan decision must be put in writing and submitted to the appropriate review body, with supporting documents, within five working days of the applicant being made aware of the decision. The grounds for appeal are limited to:
- The request for a loan was unfairly adjudicated because the requirements for a loan by CF FFG were clearly met by the applicant in his or her submission:
- Will be operating in the Fraser Fort George Regional District boundaries, and;
- Is a viable business opportunity as determined by usual CF FFG standards, and;
- Will create or maintain employment within the Fraser Fort George region.
- One or more of the decision-makers was in an undisclosed conflict of interest position;
- One or more of the decision-makers holds a known prejudice or biased opinions of an identified group and this directly affected the final decision; and
- CF FFG staff or Board members misrepresented the business plan to the Committee or the Board.
Syndicated loans are not governed under this policy.
Appeal process for loans $25,000 and under
Redress request of refused loan applications for $25,000 or less will be reviewed by the Finance and Lending Committee at a regularly convened meeting. It is the full responsibility of the individual seeking redress to complete the process as outlined.
The process required:
- The redress application is to be marked Confidential – Loan Redress and addressed to the Chair – Finance and Lending Committee.
- The Chair, with the assistance of the CF Administrative Assistant shall provide the information to the Finance and Lending Committee members 7 days in advance of the meeting scheduled to review the redress application.
- The Committee will meet in-camera (the General Manager and Business Analyst will be asked to leave the meeting) to review and discuss the redress application and will make a final decision on whether the loan applicant has been adjudicated unfairly based on the grounds identified above and whether the loan is granted approval or the denial of the loan is upheld.
- If it is deemed that the loan has been adjudicated unfairly, the Finance and Lending Committee may approve funding for the applicant, or may require additional information be provided prior to a full review and decision.
- The applicant will be informed of the decision within two working days of the final decision on the redress being made.
- Should there be follow-up required with an employee of CF FFG the Finance and Lending Committee will refer that portion of the matter to the Operations Committee.
Appeal process for loans $10,000 – $150,000
Redress requests of refused loan applications between $10,000 and $150,000 will be reviewed by the CF FFG Board of Directors. If time is of the essence a Special Meeting may be called, otherwise the loan redress will take place at a regularly convened Board of Directors meeting. It is the full responsibility of the individual seeking redress to complete the process as outlined.
The process required:
- The redress application is to be marked Confidential – Loan Redress and addressed to the Chair of the Board.
- The Chair, with the assistance of the General Manager shall arrange for a Special Meeting of the Board or shall choose to include the loan redress in the next regularly convened Board Meeting package.
- The Board will be required to review the specific grounds for the redress request as outlined above, and will vote on whether the decision of the Finance and Lending Committee was adjudicated fairly.
- If majority of the Board votes that it was adjudicated unfairly they will review the loan application to determine whether to approve the financing for the Business or whether additional information is required prior to a decision being made. The General Manager is to provide the Finance and Lending Committee and the client with rationale for the Board’s decision.
- If majority of the Board votes that the loan application was adjudicated fairly the Chair of the Board and the General Manager shall provide a written response to the client and offer to meet with the client to discuss the reasons for this decision.
- The decision of the Board is final.
- The applicant will be informed of the decision within two working days of the final decision on the redress being made.
Appeal process for loans over $150,000
An independent Redress Review Committee, consisting of five past Board of Directors or Finance and Lending Committee members or relevant representatives of the community at large, shall review appeals for loans over $150,000. Members of the Redress Review Committee will be identified annually by the CF FFG Board of Directors and asked to be available for a two year period on an as-need basis. Members will be informed annually as to the RRC membership, and provided with a copy of this policy. The Board may approve the advisory services of a specialist in the field of the loan request, in special circumstances; the specialist would provide information and advice to the Redress Review Committee.
It is the full responsibility of the individual seeking redress to complete the process as outlined.
The process shall be:
- The redress application is to be marked Confidential – Loan Redress and addressed to the “Redress Review Committee”
- The General Manager will call a meeting of the independent Redress Review Committee; committee members shall receive a copy of the redress application a minimum of 7 days prior to the set date of the meetings.
- The Redress Committee will meet at the agreed date and time to review the redress application:
- The members of the Redress Review Committee will select a Chair for the meeting from the members
- The members of the RRC will review the material provided, and determine if they require additional information prior to making a decision
- If, by the vote of the majority, the Committee deems the adjudication unfair based on the grounds identified in this policy, they will provide their rationale in writing to the Board Chair who will take the decision rendered back to the Board.
- The Board of Directors may choose to request additional information, provide financing over $150,000, or direct the Finance and Lending Committee to seek funding partners, or take the lead on a loan syndication with fellow Community Futures.
- If, by the vote of the majority, the Committee deems the adjudication process was fair, they will provide their written rationale to the Board Chair who will take the decision back to the Board and with the assistance of the General Manager arrange to meet with the applicant to discuss the outcome along with providing written documentation of the decision to the person.
- The decision of the Redress Committee is final.
- The decision of the Redress Review Committee will be communicated to the applicant by the Board Chair and General Manager within five working days of the final decision being made.
A business needs the right tools.
Additional training and support is available to those eligible through Self Employment Services. These services are designed to assist aspiring entrepreneurs with the information, skill development, resources, and coaching support they need to develop a business concept, prepare a business plan and launch the first year of business.