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SBA 504 Financing – A Community and Economic Development Tool

By Chuck Swope, CCIM, Swope Lees Commercial Real Estate, LLC

     Community Development can take many forms and may have different meaning to various stakeholders.  It can include a diverse workforce and employers, housing choices, attracting new business, and promoting excellent public schools. 

     Economic Development falls under the overall Community Development umbrella and is paramount to the overall success of a community or region.  Economic Development includes fostering new businesses, growing and expanding existing businesses, anticipating future business needs, and providing the resources to effectively and efficiently carry our business tasks.

     The SBA 504 Loan Program is a fantastic Economic Development tool for a number of reasons.  First, the program encourages property ownership.  Commercial and business property ownership provides small business owners the opportunity to build equity through as the mortgage on a property is reduced.  This can serve as an investment and retirement tool for some small business owners.  Next, the 504 Loan encourages real estate development within a community, which could include a new project, or repositioning or redeveloping an existing site, such as an abandoned facility or Brownfield.  This type of development puts derelict properties back into productive use, provides construction jobs, encourages lending, and enhances the overall value of a community, adding to the tax base of the region. 

     SBA 504 Loans directly benefit the borrower / buyer of the property, but also provide substantial value to the local community.  A community of owners will reap the benefits of ownership and “Independence through Equity.”   SBA Loans promote investment, lending and create value in local communities, which is a good for the economy and the community at large.  


Chuck Swope can be reached at


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