Don and Donna Pelton wear blue shirts and pose by the American Flag at The Country House restaurant

Is Community Capital Right for You?

You are not just a borrower. We are not just lenders.

We are partners to your business, from the kernel of an idea to business succession. Community Capital loans range from $1,000 to $100,000 and may be used to start or grow a business. Many of our borrowers have been turned down by traditional financers for lack of collateral or credit; many of our borrowers are women, low-to-moderate income, or first-generation entrepreneurs. As your business evolves, we offer business advising services, thought partnership, and connections throughout Vermont. Community Capital establishes partnerships with our borrowers that last throughout the life of the loan.

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Flexible Business Financing

We have the ability to offer varying loan rates, terms, and seasonal payments to complement your business cycle.

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Line of Credit

A Community Capital line of credit for existing businesses bridges the gap between occasional cash flow shortfalls or provides cash for working capital.

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Pre- & Post-loan Support, Included

Through Community Capital’s Business Advisory Services, we offer both pre- and post-loan support and the resources to engage other specialists who can help you overcome almost any small business issue.

Business Loan Eligibility Criteria

Borrowers who receive a Community Capital loan meet the eligibility criteria detailed below. Unlike traditional financing methods, credit and collateral are only part of our review of your application. Contact us if you have any questions as to whether you may qualify, and for more information see Community Capital Loan Eligibility Criteria.

You May Qualify for a Community Capital loan if…

  • You are a United States citizen or permanent resident alien or refugee.
  • You are 18 years of age or older.
  • You have insufficient access to conventional sources of credit.
  • You are in good standing with respect to, or in full compliance with a plan to pay, federal, state, and local taxes and are current on any student loans.
  • You would be classified as a “Small Business” by the Small Business Administration. Most Vermont businesses are “small businesses” under the SBA definition. We encourage you to contact us if you have any questions. 
  • You are located in, or relocating to, Vermont.
  • Your business operates or would operate with necessary municipal, state and federal permits.
  • At least 50% of your employees are from Vermont.

Ready to Learn More about Building a Business with Community Capital of Vermont?

Community Capital loans may be used for working capital, business acquisition, vehicle purchase, equipment purchases and upgrades, inventory, refinancing debt, and real estate. Loans may be used for a line of credit for existing businesses with seasonal cash flow needs.

Community Capital Loan Application

To apply for a loan from Community Capital, you will need a complete application, cover letter, and supporting documentation, including tax returns, a documented location, and projections and assumptions with regard to cash flow. We may need additional documents – contact us for help developing your application.

Interest rates, and application and closing fees

All Community Capital borrowers pay fixed interest rates on their loans, throughout the term of the loan. When we review your loan application, we will assign a rate to your loan based upon the level of risk associated with your request.

Learn more about the Loan Process

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A Success Story: Lee Kinsey, Blackbird Bistro, Craftsbury

Lee’s mobile bar was seven years old when she began to think about opening a brick-and-mortar restaurant. After years of traveling around Vermont to serve at weddings, festivals, and parties, she eyed a building in her hometown of Craftsbury that shares space with a day spa and a luxe campground.   Blackbird Bistro opened its doors in November 2019, four months before the Covid pandemic. “Opening a restaurant means juggling a lot of moving parts,” she noted, “And we had no idea what was coming. I’m fortunate that I have a lot working for me; I rely on my A-team and the community.” Community Capital was also behind her from the very beginning: “They got in touch immediately, and they were approachable, community-minded, and easy to understand.” Lee received a loan, and a line of credit for business expenses. “The process was very smooth,” she said. “They wanted me to be prepared, and they helped set me up for success by working toward a reachable goal. I wasn’t just another number or client; they cared just as much about me, the sustainability of the business, and its effect on the community.” Having been in business for only a few months prior to Covid, Lee says that Community Capital was “right on the ball, always funneling information to me.” As she reformatted the Bistro’s approach after months of shutdown she was blown away: “We were swimming, and our ears were smoking. The summer was gangbusters.” Lee credits Community Capital with instilling in her the confidence to jump full-tilt back into business under very new circumstances: “Community Capital has resources for anything, and they wear a lot of hats. Since we were able to get through the most sensitive months, we knew how to react and we had systems and processes in place.” The extended Northeast Kingdom has embraced Blackbird Bistro as a community hub: “The reception has been amazing. In the past, a lot of us have traveled over an hour to get to a different scene. Every day I meet new people who are pivotal to my experience as a business owner, as well as a human being. People really appreciate our effort. We are pretty lucky to have this.” As she enters her third year in business, Lee would like to continue to develop her management skills and work more closely with the community.

Investing in Entrepreneurs Statewide

Community Capital borrowers reflect the fabric of Vermont: authentic, innovative, service-oriented and invested in community.