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Colorado Agricultural Future Loan Program | FAQs

What do I need to qualify for this loan?

  • A good business or business expansion idea.
  • Details about how your business is going to operate. 
  • An understanding of how much money it will take to run your business and how much money your business will be able to make with this investment. 
  • Passion, commitment, and grit. Farming and food production are hard work. There are no easy jobs within the agricultural industry. You have to really want to do it and be willing to find solutions when you hit inevitable obstacles along the way that will force you to pivot and keep going.
  • The farming, food production, and other business skills necessary to operate your business. Having training, experience, or education in your field is essential. 
  • Support. You must be willing to build a network of people or organizations you can collaborate with or reach out to when you need help along the way. 

What will I need in order to apply for the loan?

  • You must be a resident of Colorado.
  • You must be at least 18 years of age.
  • You must own or operate a farm, ranch, or business that provides supporting infrastructure to benefit farms and ranches in the state of Colorado. Although your business does not yet have to be operational, you do need to have applied for and received a Colorado business license. 
  • You must have the ability and resources needed to operate. You are capable of beginning or expanding the operation of your business as soon as funds are disbursed. 
  • You must have the education, training, or experience necessary to operate the business. 
  • You have been denied traditional loans, have little available savings, or do not have enough collateral to secure a traditional loan.
  • You will need to provide a detailed written description of your business that answers the following questions. To make the application process quicker, we suggest that you write your response to each of the questions before you begin your application.
    • What does your business do?
    • What need(s) are you filling?
    • Who are your customers and how will you reach them?
    • How is your business going to make money?
    • What do you need to get started?
    • What are the biggest challenges you face?
    • What do you have in place to help you succeed?
    • How will you measure success? 

What types of businesses qualify for the Colorado Agricultural Future Loan?

  • Beginning farms and ranches, as well as food processors and other businesses that provide an economic benefit to Colorado farmers or ranchers. Some examples include:
    • Farms and Ranches
      • Farmers producing field crops, fruit crops, vegetables, dairy, and eggs either for food consumption, feed, or as a vital raw material
      • Ranchers raising livestock
      • Poultry and fish farmers
      • Beekeepers
    • Other Supporting Services
      • Meat packers
      • Processing plants
      • Mills
      • Hatcheries
      • Florists
      • Equipment dealers
      • Storage and distribution operations
      • Transportation systems

Don’t see your business on the list? Reach out and talk to our team.​

What are the goals of this loan program?

We aim to expand diversity in farming, increase participation of next-generation farmers, and strengthen Colorado’s agricultural industry. We are seeking to build resilience in agricultural systems by expanding opportunities and increasing access to funds for individuals and businesses that have traditionally lacked access to loan opportunities. It is our hope that this loan program can provide a critical foundation for new and beginning ag businesses and serve as a foothold into more traditional lending for these businesses. We intend to increase next-generation participation by granting loans not just to farmers and ranchers, but to any qualified applicant who dreams of owning a business within the farm-to-market infrastructure, which includes processors, distributors, and other businesses that provide an economic benefit to Colorado farmers and ranchers.

How does the loan process work?

There are 6 key steps in the loan process: gathering information, preparation, application, acceptance, fund disbursement, and loan repayment.
  • Gathering Information: Together with the Colorado Department of Agriculture (CDA), we’ve created several resources to help you get started. Read all the content on the Colorado Agricultural Future Loan Program section of our website here. Set up a one-on-one with Katy Dickey, Ag Loan Officer.
  • Preparation: This program is designed to be flexible and user-friendly. We know that a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work for everyone, and we don’t want anything to hold you back from realizing your dream. We encourage you to use the loan preparation process to help you see how you can build your business and achieve your goals.
  • Application: The application is available on paper or online. Click here to go directly to the application. Reach out today and we can help you choose the format that works best for your needs. If you have gathered all of your supporting materials, the application can often be completed within an hour; however, it is not unusual to spend several weeks preparing your supporting materials for the loan application if you are a new business or if this is your first time seeking funding.
  • Acceptance: We value your time and want to keep your momentum going, so we make a point of reviewing and responding to all completed loan applications within 7-14 business days. 
  • Fund Disbursement: Once your loan has been approved, funds will be available for use within 5-7 business days.
  • Loan Repayment: We will verbally go over commitment terms specific to your customized repayment plan. Generally speaking, loans are paid back in a series of equal installments over a set period of time. This timeline is determined at the start of the loan, based on your business needs and amount requested. If you have any questions, please reach out to Katy Dickey, Ag Loan Officer. We’re here to help.

How quickly can I get funds?

Once you’ve completed and submitted your loan application, acceptance can take 7-14 business days and fund disbursement can take 5-7 business days. The entire process from application submission to funds disbursement can happen within a few weeks.

What are the loan terms and benefits, and what do they mean?

  • 4% fixed interest rate (Annual Percentage Rate 4.17%). This means that your interest rate will remain at 4% for the life of your loan.
  • Term notes of 1-20 years. A term note states how many years it will take you to repay the loan. 
  • 1.5% loan fee. Example: a loan of $100,000 will incur a fee of $1,500. 
  • Revolving lines of credit up to 5 years. This means that if you make your regularly scheduled payments, you might be offered additional credit.
  • Up to $750,000.* (*Higher limits can be considered with prior approval.)
  • Flexible payment terms and deferred payment options. 

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I still have questions. Who should I contact?

If you have any questions, please reach out to Katy Dickey, Ag Loan Officer. We’re here to help.