August 8th, 2022
For much of history, New York City has been thought of as home of the American dream. The place where anyone can be anything if you hustle hard enough. While many Americans have opted for a slower pace for their daily life further inland or further down the coast, a large number of immigrant entrepreneurs have chosen New York as their home and many multi generational families remain.
While New York City is not the only place to live and start a business in New York state, It still features one of the most stark contrasts between the amount of venture capital that flows through to high profile real estate and tech companies versus the thousands of retail shops and bodegas that exist on the streets of each borough.
Between the costs of living and the costs of operating a business in NYC, growing a business and finding safe/affordable capital can be very difficult through more traditional routes. Microlenders are a fantastic avenue to receive important capital and development resources. While lending programs like SBA microlenders, Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), nonprofit lenders, and community revolving loan funds are not brand new, the are still largely unknown by those who could use them most. Learn more with our guide: SBA Microloans: Ultimate Guide to Secure a Microloan 
This list features 14 microlending organizations throughout New York that are proving responsible and accessible capital to New York startups and small businesses.
Grameen America, Inc
Grameen America is a long established pioneer in the microlending space. Since 2008, their efforts are focused most on supporting women who live in poverty and by trying to help them improve their livelihood by building businesses. They have helped distribute more than $2.5 billion to over 155,000 women entrepreneurs. Grameen’s lending process is unique in that applicants form a small group of people they trust to grow their business with, and then they will go through trainings to understand loans and credit building. Then applicants receive a small microloan of $2,000 or less. Depending on it’s success, they will be eligible to receive more funding and training.
Community Capital New York, Inc
Community Capital New York focuses on supporting small businesses and creating jobs in the Hudson valley. Offering microloans between $1,000 and $250,000, Community Capital also provided nearly 12,000 hours of free business training during the height of the pandemic with a large focus on underserved business owners.
Westminster Economic Development Initiative, Inc
Focused on economic development for western New Yorkers, WEDi began in 2006 and now, among many community programs, they offer microloans to small businesses. Eligible applicants can apply for between $500 and $20,000 who lack access to traditional financing options. WEDi provides free pre loan technical assistance and developmental workshops for borrowers.
Harlem Entrepreneurial Fund, LLC
Established in 2007 in Harlem, HEF supports low income and minority entrepreneurs with business loans. HEF became a CDFI in 2012 and since inception has helped nearly 400 businesses with over $9 million in microloans up to $150,000 at a very fair rate.
Renaissance Economic Development Corporation
Started in 1997 in New York City, Renaissance focused on low income immigrant residents and tried to support them with small business development resources. As a CDFI and SBA microlender, they aided in the recovery of downtown Manhattan after the 9/11 tragedy. They have continued to be a top SBA microlender in the nation with a modernized process for small business owners in New York City who can apply for loans as a startup and for up to $250,000.
BOC Capital Corporation
Located in Brooklyn, BOC Capital Corp offers a host of different small business loan programs and services including SBA microloans and SBA community advantage loans which can range from $500 to $250,000 for new and existing businesses. In addition to several loan products, BOC also provides one on one assistance on credit repair, loan readiness, financial statement preparation and more.
Pathstone Enterprise Center, Inc
The Enterprise Center at Pathstone was established in 1997 in Rochester, NY and is a certified CDFI and microlender. They work with startups and existing businesses by providing loans from $5,000 to $250,000 as well as technical assistance before and after making the loan.
Ascendus is headquartered in New York City, but can actually lend to small businesses in most parts of the country. They offer both local and national loan program offerings in order to support entrepreneurs. AscendUs has a specialized loan product for startup businesses as well as SBA community advantage and SBA microloan to name just a few of their accessible products.
With offices in both Manhattan and Queens, Accompany is ready to help small businesses in New York city with loan programs that cover a range of loans from $500 up to $250,000 for very affordable rates. Accompany also provides a $2,000 credit builder loan with the intent of helping borrowers clean up credit reports and provide credit repair education. Business owners that wish to apply must be located within the 5 boroughs of NYC.
Business Consortium Fund
Started in 1987 and located in New York City, BCF has provided over 1,000 loans totaling more than $225 million exclusively to NMSDC certified businesses. BCF also offers a microloan program with loans between $10,000 and $100,000 but businesses must already be in operation.
Pursuit is one of the longest standing small business development organizations and has gone by a few names over the years. They offer small business loans to founders in New York and a few neighboring states. They offer several loan programs include microloans and community advantage loans but they can lend between $10,000 and $5.5 million for a variety of uses like working capital.
Adirondack Economic Development Corporation
AEDC is a non profit organization that was started in 1976 that serves 14 counties in northern New York State. They have provided small business loans and technical assistance to underserved entrepreneurs as both startups and existing businesses. A great resource to applicants within their footprint is that they help applicants with free business planning.
National Development Council (Grow America Fund)
NDC is a nonprofit that has been working for over 50 years on many different economic development fronts. Headquartered in Brooklyn, but their programs are available all over the country. With their small business lending program, they have helped more than 700 small businesses nationwide by providing SBA 7(a) loans up to $5 million.
TruFund Financial Services, Inc
TruFund was established in 2005 and has their headquarters in New York City. Within New York, TruFund has provided more than 1,500 loans totaling over $125 million and has helped retain more than 7,000 jobs and 3,000 created with the borrowed funds. TruFund provides capital through several loan programs but most require businesses to be in operation for at least a years time. Loans range from $25,000 up to $750,000 for a variety of purposes.