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Illinois Small Business Loans and Lenders

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By Erin Ryan Staff Writer and Editor at Fast Capital 360 Reviewed By Mike Lucas Updated on March 29, 2021
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Loan Overview

  • Coins stacked on table with blue arrow pointing up
    Loan Amount Up to $500,000
  • Calendar image appearing as though the page is being flipped
    Estimated Repayment Terms 1-5 Years
  • Speedometer icon
    Interest Rate Starting at 7%
  • Dollar sign in circle
    Speed of Funding As fast as 1 day

With Chicago arguably the largest business magnet in the region, a large number of businesses are headquartered in Illinois. When you need funding to run your small business in the Prairie State, where should you turn?

We’re letting you in on where to find Illinois small business loans and offering up helpful information and resources for entrepreneurs in the state.

Small Business Landscape in Illinois

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), these are some of the top industries with the highest number of small firms in the state:

  • Technical, scientific and professional services
  • Warehousing and transportation
  • Construction
  • Health care and social assistance
  • Real estate, rental and leasing
  • Retail
  • Administrative, support and waste management
  • Arts, entertainment and recreation
  • Insurance and finance
  • Accommodation and food services

Small businesses are responsible for employing approximately 45% of the private sector workforce in Illinois, translating to 2.5 million workers. 


How to Get a Business Loan in Illinois

When you’re ready to apply for a business loan in Illinois, you have your pick of lenders, including conventional lenders, such as banks, and nonbank alternative lenders. Prepare to apply by understanding common business loan requirements

Here are a few banks in the state to consider in your search for a business loan:

5 Top Banks for Illinois Small Business Loans

1. Busey Bank

Whether you’re looking for commercial loans in Illinois or SBA loans, you’ll find them here. This bank is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB), where it’s earned an A+ rating.

Visit one of numerous branches throughout the state, where you’ll find these financing products:

  • Business credit cards
  • Agricultural loans
  • Fixed asset financing
  • Working capital loans
  • Community development
  • USDA business and industry guaranteed loan

2. Marquette Bank

Marquette Bank has more than 20 branches in the state. It’s earned accreditation from the BBB, where it’s A+ rated. WalletHub also named it one of 2021’s Best Banks in Illinois.

There are a variety of funding options and commercial loans at this Illinois bank:

  • Commercial lines of credit
  • Commercial mortgages
  • Construction loans
  • Working capital loans
  • Business credit cards

3. Midland States Bank

This bank has earned the BBB’s A+ rating in addition to WalletHub’s 2021’s Best Bank in Illinois award. It’s also earned a 4.7-star rating on the site. 

Head to one of more than 50 branches, where you’ll find these loans:

  • Term loans
  • Real estate loans
  • Business term loans
  • Business lines of credit
  • Equipment financing
  • Commercial loans
  • Agribusiness loans

4. First Midwest Bank

This institution made Forbes’ list of America’s Best Banks for 2020 list. It’s also A+ rated with the BBB. Financing is available from $25,000-$750,000 for qualified applicants.

  • SBA loans
  • Term loan
  • Real estate loans
  • Lines of credit
  • Asset-based lending
  • Equipment financing
  • Business credit cards
  • Healthcare industry financing
  • Commercial real estate loans

5. Hickory Point Bank 

This Central Illinois bank was founded in 1979. It’s earned a 4.5-star rating on WalletHub and an A+ rating from the BBB. 

The following financing is available here:

  • Business term loans
  • Construction loans
  • Commercial mortgage loans
  • Business lines of credit
  • Business letters of credit

Alternative Forms of Financing in Illinois

When you think of small business loans, conventional lenders, such as those listed above, may be the first that come to mind. However, banks can be slow to approve and fund and often have approval requirements that are challenging for many small business owners to meet (e.g., high credit score, collateral). 

Cue alternative lenders. They’re known to provide fast funding and work with applicants who may have been turned down for a bank loan. With streamlined application and approval processes, small business owners could receive funds as fast as 1 day after approval. 

Financing options offered through alternative lenders include merchant cash advances and short-term loans. The tradeoff is often shorter repayment terms, more frequent payments and less competitive interest rates.

  • Applying for Alternative Financing Through Fast Capital 360

    When you’re seeking financing for your Illinois small business, see what Fast Capital 360 can do for you.

    Here are just a few benefits of working with us:

    Speed

    A few minutes is all it takes to complete our easy online application. 

    Multiple Offers

    With just one application, you could get several financing offers so you can weigh your options.

    Expert Guidance

    A Fast Capital 360 Business Advisor will go over all the details of your financing offer with you, so you can make the best decision.


Get Your Business Loan Options in Minutes

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Small Business Resources in Illinois

In addition to funding opportunities, you can look to the following resources for additional assistance in the form of training, networking and more.

National Association of Development Companies

If you’re interested in small business loans for veterans in Illinois, look to this organization that partners with various Certified Development Companies (CDC) participating in the SBA 504 VetLoan Advantage program.

Here are a few CDCs for SBA veteran financing:

  • Growth Corp (Central/Northern Illinois and Chicago, IL)
  • Rockford Local Development Corporation (Rockford, IL)
  • SomerCor (Chicago, IL)

Veteran Business Program

While this organization doesn’t offer small business loans for veterans, it does help veteran business owners access work contracts in the state. Offered through the Illinois Department of Central Management Services, veteran or qualified service-disabled veteran owners can apply for certification to take part in the program. Certification is valid for 5 years.

SCORE

SCORE is a nationwide nonprofit organization dedicated to providing assistance and resources to small business owners. The Peoria branch serves 14 counties in Central Illinois, while the Chicago branch serves 9 locations in Cook County. Take part in a 1-on-1 mentorship program or browse the online library for informative articles, document templates and webinars. Sign up for a workshop too.

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