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Still no boom in lending to small biz


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Some success » There probably isn’t a sure-fire formula to follow to get a loan. But owners who have taken out loans recently were successful because they had built a relationship with bankers over time or they put together an application package that went well beyond the basics that a bank requires.

"You don’t just ready, fire, borrow," says Kathryn Petty, who has gotten three loans totaling $300,000 in the last year from her long-time community banker and from a national bank. "You need to be ready and you need to communicate [with bank officers] along the way."

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Petty, president of White Lion Tea, a manufacturer and retailer of teas in Scottsdale, Ariz., says the long-term relationship she had with her local bank made the process easier. But she also believes she was able to get loans because she had prepared a cost-benefit analysis that told bankers what she would do with the money, how it would help her business and in turn, how it would help her pay them back.

One loan officer told her, "you’ve done all my homework."

Joyce Rosenberg writes about small business for The Associated Press




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