terms & eligibility:


  • CEF lends to businesses anywhere in the State of Colorado.
  • Liquor stores, bars and certain other businesses are not eligible. (Real estate development and investment oriented businesses are ineligible)
  • Loan funds may not be used for owner's salaries, personal expenses, delinquent taxes and certain other purposes.


  • Loan amounts range from $1,000 to $250,000
  • Current interest rates range from 9% to 14% per year
  • Loans may be amortized up to 7 years or longer in some cases
  • Fees may include the following:
    • Loan application fee of $25 per owner or cosigner
    • Commitment fee between 1.5% to 5%
    • $100 per year business advisory services fee and other fees for document recording, etc.
  • Any person or entity with over 20% ownership interest in the business must guarantee the loan. CEF may also request a cosigner or additional guarantor in some cases. This may be a person who does not live in the applicant's household and is not a principal member of the business. Cosigners/Guarantors must have good credit and the capacity to make the loan payment.

loan evaluation:




Loans To Existing Businesses:

  • Financial ability to repay
  • Commitment and motivation to improve your business
  • Good payment history with other creditors, landlords, suppliers, etc.
  • Collateral available to secure the loan is valued at liquidation or trade-in prices


Loans To Start-Up Businesses:

  • Industry experience preferred and personal equity investment of between 10-50%
  • An alternative income source
  • A business plan and financial projections (required)
  • Start Up businesses are usually limited to a loan of $35,000


Colorado Enterprise Fund is not a bank. We do utilize basic lending guidelines when reviewing a loan application but the difference is that we are more flexible in how we apply these guidelines. CEF reviews all aspects of your request in our decision making process. Some of the typical factors we review when evaluating a loan request include:


  • CREDIT REPORT - While good credit is important, CEF recognizes that applicants may have had credit issues in the past.
  • COLLATERAL - Collateral demonstrates that the owner believes in the business by putting up something of value to ensure payment. We typically require collateral however the size of the loan and other factors may influence the required amount. Collateral is considered a secondary source of repayment.
  • EQUITY (owner investment) - We want to see that an applicant has something at stake in the business. For a start-up this may be in the form of cash or equipment or other assets already owned by the business before the loan.
  • CASH FLOW / PROFITABILITY - As this is the primary source for repayment of a loan, we review financial statements in order to determine cash flow and profitability. We also look at the personal cash flow and debt service situation of the primary business owner, which might include outside income.
  • BUSINESS INDUSTRY CLIMATE - Some businesses & industries are more difficult to finance as a result of economic or specific industry conditions.


The above is not intended to be an exhaustive description of our underwriting process but might provide you with an idea of some of the factors we review. In all cases a well written business plan, accompanied by complete and accurate financial statements will provide your best opportunity for funding.


We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, marital status, disability, age, national origin or sexual orientation in services or accommodations offered or provided to our employees, clients or guests.