Lakeland Bank Earns Preferred Lender Status from SBA

Lakeland Bank has been granted Preferred Lender Status by the Small Business Administration (SBA), the highest bank designation reserved for top-tier lenders. The Preferred Lender status provides Lakeland Bank with the authority to process, close, service and liquidate most SBA-guaranteed loans without prior review to provide faster financing to the small business community.

“Lakeland Bank is honored to be named an SBA Preferred Lender,” said Thomas J. Shara, President and CEO of Lakeland Bank. “This designation is a reflection of our commitment to recognizing the specific needs of the small businesses we serve, and providing them with best in class service through our participation in SBA’s lending programs.”

The Preferred Lenders Program (PLP) was created by the SBA in an effort to streamline lending procedures and the approval process needed to provide financial assistance to the small business community. To earn the designation, lenders must demonstrate a proficiency in processing and servicing SBA-guaranteed loans and a thorough understanding of SBA lending procedures and policies.

SBA loans have many key benefits that make them an attractive option for small businesses compared to conventional loans, such as:

  • Loan amounts from $250,000 to $5 million
  • As little as 10% down on commercial real estate
  • Flexible disbursement schedules
  • Financing for loan closing costs

Small Business owners can utilize SBA funding for a variety of needs, including:

  • Purchasing Owner-Occupied Commercial Real Estate
  • Business Expansion or Acquisition
  • Franchise Financing
  • Partner or Management Buyout
  • Financing New Businesses
  • Inventory Purchases
  • Debt Refinancing
  • Working Capital
  • Cover Start-up Costs
  • Equipment, Machinery, Furniture, etc.
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