A Small Business Administration loan program that's been used by nearly 7,000 veterans, reservists and National Guard members has been extended for another three years.
The SBA said it will renew the Patriot Loan Express program, which since 2007 has provided more than $560 million in loan guarantees to veterans, service-disabled veterans, reservists, National Guard members and their spouses.
Patriot Express loans are offered by SBA's participating lenders. The loans under the program are available for amounts up to $500,000, the SBA said.
Patriot Express loan guarantees are unique when compared to other SBA loan programs.
For one, they offer a maximum guaranty of up to 85 percent on loans up to $150,000 and as much as 75 percent on loans between $150,000 and $500,000.
Interest rates also are lower, SBA said. The interest rates on Patriot Express loans are between 2.25 percent and 4.75 percent over prime, depending on the dollar amount and maturity of the loan.
The loans can be used for start-up, expansion, equipment purchases, working capital, inventory or business-occupied real estate purchases, SBA said.
Patriot Express loans have been used by 31 people in the SBA's Wichita District since the program's inception, said deputy district director Pat Carney. Those loans, Carney said, total $3.17 million.
"It's been a good program for us," he said. "We've got Fort Riley and McConnell Air Force Base in our territory.
"Some of those guys end up staying in the area and starting their own businesses."
The SBA Wichita District encompasses 77 of the state's 105 counties.
More information on the program can be found at www.sba.gov/patriotexpress.