Loan & Financing Programs

Accessing and securing financing is essential to start or grow a business. A variety of of loan and financing programs at the County and State level are available to new and expanding businesses. 

Below we highlight some of these loan & financing programs that are commonly applicable to Frederick businesses. This list and its brief overviews of eligibility/benefits/application are not comprehensive. For full program details and requirements, please visit the links provided. 

To search all available State Financing Programs, click here.

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Highlighted Loan and Financing Programs 

County Programs 

Frederick County Small Business Loan Guarantee 

  • Eligibility: Growth-related expansion projects to existing businesses and for the purchase of real estate, machinery, equipment, inventory, working capital and renovation of real estate to start-up businesses (or those in business for less than two years). The business must be located in a Frederick County priority funding area.
  • Benefits: a loan guarantee for up to 80% with a maximum of $50,000 
  • Application: Complete loan application package
  • Full program details 


Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy Loans (C-PACE) 

  • Eligibility: installation of solar, geothermal or wind energy systems, water conservation devices not required by law OR any construction, renovation, or retrofitting to reduce energy consumption
  • Benefits: 100% up front capital to commercial property owners for approved projects; the loan is repaid through a long-term surcharge on the property tax bill that transfers with the sale of the property 
  • Application: Contact the County's Office of Economic Development for more information at 301-600-1058
  • Full program details

Frederick County Business Pitch Services

The County offers two free services to assistant those who are looking to build their business capital:
  • Eligibility: all Frederick County residents and businesses looking to build their business capital 
  • Benefits:
    • Pitch Creator: an online, self-paced learning program
    • Business Pitch Room at ROOT (118 North Market Street):  a state-of-the-art video pitch room allows Frederick residents and businesses to have their business pitch videotaped at no charge


State Programs: 

Neighborhood Business Works Program 

  • Eligibility: New and expanding small businesses and non-profit organizations located in a Sustainable Community or Priority Funding Area
  • Benefits: Flexible gap financing for eligible projects - with loan amounts up to $5 million 
  • Application: Complete loan application package
  • Full program details


Small, Minority and Women-Owned Business Account- Video Terminal Fund (VLT) 

  • Basic Eligibility: small, minority, and women-owned businesses in Maryland
  • Benefits: capital financing
  • Application: The MD Department of Commerce administers the program with the assistance of eligible fund managers who oversee the distribution of the funds. For a list of fund managers around the state, visit http://commerce.maryland.gov/fund/programs-for-businesses/vlt


Military Personnel and Veteran-Owned Small Business Loan Program 

No interest loans of up to $50,000 for businesses owned by military reservists, veterans, National Guard personnel and for small businesses that employ or are owned by such persons.

  • Eligibility: Eligible applicants include veteran-owned small businesses, businesses owned by military reservists and National Guard members called to active duty, and small businesses, with fewer than 50 employees that employ them. 
  • Benefits: No interest loans that range from $1,000 to $50,000
  • Application: Contact the Department of Commerce's MPVSBLP Program Manager for information on application  
  • Full program details 

Maryland Small Business Development Financing Authority

  • Eligibility: MSBDFA clients include small businesses unable to obtain adequate business financing on reasonable terms through normal financing channels
  • Benefits: A private contractor manages the four MSBDFA components and the Maryland Department of Commerce provides financing for the approved small businesses: Contract Financing Program, Equity Participation Program, Long Term Guaranty Program, and Surety Bonding Program
  • Application: For more information contact MSDFA contact at Meridian Management Group at 410-333-4270
  • Full program details

Federal Programs

Opportunity Zone 

  • Eligibility: A Qualified Opportunity Fund is an investment vehicle that is set up as either a partnership or corporation for investing in eligible property that is located in an Opportunity Zone and that utilizes the investor’s gains from a prior investment for funding the Opportunity Fund. 
  • Benefits: 
    • Temporary Deferral - A temporary deferral of inclusion in taxable income for capital gains reinvested into an Opportunity Fund. The deferred gain must be recognized on the earlier of the date on which the opportunity zone investment is disposed of or December 31, 2026.
    • Step-Up Basis - For capital gains reinvested in an Opportunity Fund, the basis is increased by 10% if the investment in the Opportunity Fund is held by the taxpayer for at least 5 years and by an additional 5% if held for at least 7 years, thereby excluding up to 15% of the original gain from taxation.
    • Permanent Exclusion: a permanent exclusion from taxable income of capital gains from sale or exchange of an investment in an Opportunity Fund if the investment is held for at least 10 years. This exclusion only applies to gains accrued after an investment in an Opportunity Fund.
  • Application: Contact the Department of Economic Development for more information