Louisiana Small Business Loans

Louisiana state administration has invested numerous resources in the growth of small businesses. That's why, it’s considered one of the best states for entrepreneurs to get a business loan. In this article, you’ll find everything you need to know about Louisiana small business grants and loans.

At a glance A small business in Louisiana is described as one that employs 500 people or less. The average debt amount for small businesses is $90,000, and the state currently has over 447,440 registered small businesses. This accounts for more than 52.8% of the state's privatized jobs in layman’s terms, hiring close to one million workers in total. On this page, we examine the top funding options available in the state of Louisiana, as well as loan eligibility requirements and more.

Top Louisiana Small Business Loan Options

1. Celtic Bank

Celtic Bank's SBA loan program offers loans ranging from $25,000 to $5 million for working capital, refinancing, company investment, real estate purchasing and construction, equipment purchase, or inventory. If it's a real estate loan you are applying for, the terms are either 10 to 25 years. 

Based on a number of conditions, Celtic Bank Corporation lends up to a maximum of 90%, which is also known as "loan-to-value.” Credit scores above 680 are normally expected from the business's owners. Celtic Bank, unlike many other SBA lenders, offers fixed-rate SBA loans as well as regular SBA loans with variable rates.

SBA 7(A) Loans and SBA 504 Loans

Celtic Bank is one of the largest SBA 7(a) and SBA 504 loan originators. Although these loans are still made by private lenders like Celtic, they’re partly subsidized by the Small Business Administration. 

This enables companies to gain access to terms for which they would not otherwise be qualified. A down payment of around 10% is required for a 7(a) loan, as well as the provision of assets or real estate as collateral. The duration of an SBA loan varies depending on the loan's intent. 

Advantage Loans

Celtic Advantage Loans are secured. To reduce the bank's risk, you'll put up collateral – usually in the form of commercial real estate, inventory, or equipment. This typically means lower interest rates than unsecured loans. Celtic provides a (potentially) very long-term length on its business loans compared to other banks.

Asset-Based Credit Lines

Celtic offers a line of credit to businesses with a ‘commercial accounts receivable’ infrastructure. Unlike a loan, which the bank provides as a lump sum, a line of credit can be used in small increments over the duration of your term. Of course, you’ll have to pay interest on the credit you've used. While this option gives you much more flexibility than a loan, it still comes with a lot more fees.

Express Term Loans

A Celtic Express Term Loan could be a better option for businesses requiring a smaller amount of working capital. The approval process for these loans is accelerated. However, keep in mind that these are all secured loans, which means you'll have to put up collateral in the form of your company's assets.

2. Newtek Small Business Finance

Newtek is a nontraditional lender that offers term loans, credit lines, and commercial real estate loans. The website is straightforward to use, and finding a loan opportunity for your business is as simple as looking at the Solutions page. On Newtek’s website, there’s a lot of information about lending options, but not much about the qualification requirements. 

Throughout the lending process, a loan expert from Newtek can assist you. Licensed business owners generally receive support in as little as 24 hours. Newtek evaluates your earnings rather than your credit score and offers finance to all major industries.

Loans With a Fixed Repayment Period

Newtek provides fixed-term business loans ranging from $10,000 to $10 million, for a period ranging between seven and 25 years. These are far longer terms than other lenders we’ve looked at (with some only offering six-month repayment terms). If you pay off your loan before the end of the term, you'll pay little or no interest.

Revolving Credit Lines

A business owner may get a revolving line of credit for an unspecified period of time. It's possible to draw on it, pay it off, and draw on it again. Businesses can borrow up to $1.5 million, but they must put up some kind of protection. Accounts receivable, inventory, and healthcare receivables are used to protect Newtek's credit lines. 

Newtek experts assist in determining the best type of collateral for your business. However, the amount of collateral you put up can have an impact on the overall loan amount. Several lenders provide accounts receivable lines of credit, which can be viewed as a kind of invoice financing. On your unpaid invoices, Newtek will provide advances of up to 80%.

Real Estate for Company

This loan is for small business owners who want to fund real estate. For the purchase or refinancing of real estate, Newtek offers loans ranging from $125,000 to $10 million. Terms can be up to 25 years long, with a loan-to-value ratio of up to 90%.

3. Live Oak Bank

Live Oak Bank is our top-ranked SBA lender. The company only focuses on 17 industries that it understands well, allowing it to respond quickly to customers in those industries. Live Oak is consistently ranked among the top three SBA banks in the nation.

Loans that the SBA has approved

Live Oak Bank focuses solely on offering SBA-approved loan products to consumers, which are more difficult to come by, but far less expensive. The regular SBA 7(a), 504, and micro-financing loan programs are among the bank’s finance options. Customers who work with Live Oak Bank receive industry-professional assistance with the SBA application process.

Summary of the Best Louisiana Small Business Loans


Type of Financing

Loan Amount

Interest Rate

Loan Term

Celtic Bank

SBA 7(A) Loans

Advantage Loans

Asset-Based Credit Lines

Express Term Loans

SBA 504 Loans

$350,001 to $5,000,000

$150,001 to $350,000

$250,000 to $5,000,000

$20,000 to $150,000

Up to $10,000,000

Varies: Fixed or variable rates

Up to 25 years

Up to 25 years

12 months to 10 years

Up to 10 years

Up to 25 years

Newtek Small Business Finance, Inc.

Term loans

Revolving lines of credit 

Commercial real estate

$10,000 to $10 million

Up to $1.5 million

$125,000 to $10 million

Rates vary based on your business's financial situation

Seven to 25 years

No limit; finances can be redrawn

Up to 25 years

Live Oak Bank

SBA Loans 7(A) and 504

$50,000 up to the average of $1,200,000

Current prime rate plus between 2.75% and 8.25%.

Over 10 years, depending on the amount borrowed

Top Online Louisiana Small Business Loan Options

Apart from the local loan providers listed above, Louisiana-based businesses can also apply for finance from national lenders. Most of these companies also allow you to apply online, such as the ones listed below. 

1. Fundbox

Fundbox is an ideal choice for entrepreneurs with poor credit score who find it difficult to get approved loans from other institutions. 

Fundbox also has a quick and simple application form. All you need to do is register your company and then link your accounting program to the site. Fundbox takes care of the rest. Furthermore, if authorized, funds can be released immediately, often as soon as the next day. This is a fantastic benefit for small companies that are struggling financially.

Many lenders need at least a 650 credit score for a small business to apply, while Fundbox only requires a score of 500.

2. OnDeck

OnDeck primarily provides small loans. It also offers customizable options that you can tailor to your own needs. Applying is simple, thanks to dedicated customer service, which is available to you throughout the process. 

You may apply for loans ranging from $5,000 to $500,000. Once you’ve applied, you’ll find out the status of your submission quickly, in some instances, within 24 hours. After approval, OnDeck issues the funds within a few days.

3. Fundera

Fundera is a perfect choice if you need a loan but don't have a lot of time to review and compare all of your options. It also assists small businesses that don’t have a track record or previous year accounts to back up their application.

Keep in mind that Fundera merely introduces you to the types of finance you qualify for from other providers. If you apply for a loan through this company, it’ll come from a third-party lender, and you’ll still be subject to lender-specific terms and conditions. 

Fundera will secure the best possible offers for you because the company works closely with its clients and has a proven relationship with established lenders around the country.

Additional Louisiana Small Business Financial Resources

Aside from the commercial loan programs and online lenders listed above, Louisiana also has additional financial services available, such as government offers and small business grants.

Louisiana Government Grants

The bulk of the federal budget of government grants is poured into the private sector every year, with more than $15 million in grants and an additional $11 million in local government funding sources. In Louisiana, small business is the backbone of economic development. With over 80,000 businesses in operation, the state provides grants to a vast range of industries, from scientific and technical services to accommodation and food companies. 

You may also be eligible for small business grants if you work in the farming industry. Additionally, Louisiana is home to over 30,000 farms, so you may also be eligible for small business grants if you work in this industry. 

While the federal government doesn’t provide grants for starting and growing a business, the state of Louisiana does. Eligible entrepreneurs can receive small business grants to help them start and develop their businesses.

To be eligible for a state award, an applicant must be disabled, have an outstanding business plan, be from a previously disadvantaged background, or own an enterprise that would significantly support the state of Louisiana. 

These grant recipients aren’t required to repay the government. If you’re trying to get your commercial venture off the ground in Louisiana, it makes sense to include small business grants as one of your funding options.

Louisiana Grant Watch

Louisiana Grant Watch is a site specifically designed to accumulate and compare grants available to businesses in the state of Louisiana.

Small Business Grants for Women in Louisiana

In 1998, WomensNet started the Amber Grant Foundation. WomensNet continues this tradition today, awarding a minimum amount of $10,000 to Amber Grant beneficiaries per month. There’s also a grant up to $25,000 offered at the end of each year. 

WomensNet is an entrepreneurial group of women who, in addition to awarding grants, produces exclusive content and special reports to assist women business owners. On occasion, they consult or provide tailored business guidance to members of their group.

Other Resources for Louisiana Small Businesses

Besides financial assistance, some states, including Louisiana, also provide resources such as coaching, mentorship, and business networking.

Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality

Small businesses and communities can benefit from the LDEQ's Small Business Assistance Program (SBAP), which offers environmental regulatory assistance and information.

Small businesses are characterized as having 100 or fewer workers and a small facility. They must also be independently owned and not dominating in their industry or publically traded. The Small Business Assistance Program also receives assistance from NetDMR. It’s an online tool that enables facilities to sign and send discharge monitoring reports to the LDEQ electronically.

Live Oak Bank

Help for a Specific Industry

Live Oak Bank assigns customers to account managers who are experts in their field for each niche market. Additionally, each industry is represented by Live Oak Bank's business advisory group and has a servicing manager.

Material for Education

Overall, Live Oak Bank provides superb customer support. Live Oak Bank is an excellent program that teaches small business owners about the niche markets they access. Students are usually existing borrowers or investors interested in learning more about the industry. Furthermore, Live Oak Bank is one of the few lenders that services small business loans in Louisiana from start to finish.

How to Prepare for a Louisiana State Business Loan

In this section, we’ve included some key pointers on how to get a small business loan in Louisiana.

  • Develop a business plan
  • Find a lender willing to work with start-up businesses
  • Improve your credit rating by checking it on a daily basis
  • Get the correct paperwork in order to qualify for different grants
  • Prepare an invoicing finance plan
  • Prepare an operational financing plan
  • Compile a market analysis
  • Explore all of the available funding options, including online and offline alternatives

Bottom Line

Initial startup costs and credit loans are often the most daunting aspects of beginning a company. For a company to start successfully, small business start-ups and owners must explore all possible financing opportunities.

If you’re not eligible for a state grant, there are numerous alternatives to consider. These include business credit cards, invoice lending, and financial or personal loans. Each solution has its own range of risks but also a slew of benefits.

If you’ve exhausted all lending or grant opportunities, there are still various small business loans in Louisiana that can fulfill your finance requirements with terms that suit your budget. Moreover, many national lenders offer speedy loans that you can apply for online. Consider your options and get the perfect small business loan.