About

Advisory Services

Advocacy

Events

Membership

Sponsor

Education

Newsletters

Resources

×

Revolving Loan Fund Resource Center

Revolving loan funds (RLFs) are finance tools that can be used to help grow small and mid-sized businesses. A RLF is a funding pool that replenishes itself. As existing loan holders make payments, the payments are recycled to fund new loans. RLFs provide businesses with a flexible source of capital that can be combined with conventional sources. RLFs be used to fill the gap between the loan amount a borrower obtains from a private lender and the amount needed to sustain a business. Revolving loan funds issue loans at competitive rates, making them attractive to borrowers. Because RLFs must replenish the fund to make future loans, programs must maintain a balance between charging attractive rates and earning a reasonable rate of return.

RLFs are typically used for operating capital, acquisition of land and buildings, new construction, facade and building renovation, landscape and property improvements, and machinery and equipment. Loan duration varies according to use of the funds. To establish a revolving loan fund, the capital usually comes from a mix of public sources (local, state, and federal governments) and private sources (financial and philanthropic institutions). Most revolving loan funds are at least partially funded by local, public sources of capital. This funding is usually a grant and does not need to be paid back. RLF programs carry the risk of borrower default as well as constant pressure to replenish a fund so it may continue to make loans. However, through sound policies and procedures, these issues can be easily addressed and managed throughout the life of a fund.

Want regular updates on RLF? Subscribe to CDFA's Revolving Loan Fund Finance Update newsletter.

Subscribe

+RLF Program Database

The RLF Program Database provides details on loan funds throughout the country. Resources are restricted to CDFA members only. CDFA members must login with their unique CDFA username and password to access restricted items. Non-members can join CDFA today to gain access to the entire database. Visit the CDFA RLF Resource Center to learn more about loan funds, or submit your RLF for this database.

+Case Studies

RLFs are flexible, efficient, and effective tool for various uses. CDFA has collected hundreds of case study examples.

CDFA Texas Webinar: Driving Economic Development with Revolving Loan Funds Members only Login
A revolving loan fund is a self-replenishing pool of money, utilizing interest and principle payments on old loans to issue new ones. They come in many shapes and sizes and support a variety of economic development activities. This webinar will outline the basic principles of capitalizing and managing RLFs and how to maximize their use to support businesses in Texas.
Durango & Alamosa: Revolving Loan Funds at their BestMembers only Login
Durango and Alamosa are two model success stories for using targeted revolving loan funds to promote, create, and assist businesses in their communities. Patrick Waggoner, Justin Fazzari, and Kevin Wilkins showcase how some selected business investments that have been made and outline how the RLFs work to generate economic activity and communications with the business community.
Palm Beach County Brownfields Revolving Loan Fund Program
Greg Vaday of Palm Beach County discusses how to establish a RLF within the parameters of EPA funding.
The Emerging Technology Fund Members only Login
James P. Kenney of MassDevelopment describes the Emerging Technology Fund, an RLF established to encourage growth of emerging technology companies.
Revolving Loan FundsMembers only Login
Jennifer Sherwin of the Self-Help Credit Union presents on Revolving Loan Funds in rural areas.
View More Case Studies

+Lending Policies Criteria & Conditions

RLFs are flexible, efficient, and effective tool for various uses. CDFA has collected hundreds of case study examples.

Hermitage Revolving Loan Fund ManualMembers only Login
The City of Hermitage, Mercer County, Pennsylvania operates an Industrial/Business Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) to provide funding assistance in the form of low-interest financing for eligible economic development projects.
Public Private Partnership at WorkMembers only Login
Ryan Whitehead of the Wyoming Bank & Trust discusses the decision process for funding revolving loan fun programs.
The Decision ProcessMembers only Login
Cory Phelps with Idaho Housing and Finance Association gives the insider's look how bankers make decisions on revolving loan funds touching on risk, capacity, capital, collateral, and more.
When a Deal Goes BadMembers only Login
Revolving loan funds don't always capitalize successfully, and Mike O'Donnell of the Colorado Lending Source explains the elements that play into bad RLF deals.
Revolving Loan FundsMembers only Login
Jennifer Sherwin of the Self-Help Credit Union presents on Revolving Loan Funds in rural areas.
View More Resources

+Headlines

+Publications

CDFA publishes one of the only comprehensive guides to revolving loan funds. Purchase a copy today in the CDFA Bookstore.

DFCP Study Pack
The DFCP Complete Book Package contains all of the reference guides to study for the DFCP final exam at a 10% discount.
Unlocking Capital: A Handbook for Becoming a High Performing Development Finance Agency
The Handbook is designed to be a starting point for local leaders to engage in the creation or acceleration of a DFA to build and utilize the development finance toolbox.
Practitioner's Guide to Economic Development Finance 2nd Edition
The Practitioner's Guide provides the insight and practical information needed to critically understand how economic development is financed and the tools, strategies and techniques used to build strong communities.
Revolving Loan Fund Reference Guide
The Revolving Loan Fund Reference Guide offers an in-depth look at RLF program development, implementation and management. This guide demonstrates how a RLF program can compliment economic development strategies, encourage investment and assist traditionally underserved businesses.
View More Publications

+Webcasts

CDFA // BNY Mellon Webcast Series: Opportunities and Advancements in Water FinanceMembers only Login
During this installment of the CDFA // BNY Mellon Development Finance Webcast Series, learn from expert speakers Jordan Dorfman from the EPA, Tyler Old from PFM, John DeLuca from CoBank, and Jong Sook Nee from McManimon, Scotland & Baumann, LLC as they discuss developments in the water finance space and how different financing mechanisms like bonds, RLFs, P3s, and other tools are being used to address today’s water infrastructure projects.
CDFA // BNY Mellon Webcast Series: Immigrant & Refugee Financing StrategiesMembers only Login
This month’s CDFA // BNY Mellon Development Finance Webcast Series featured Jim Claybaugh of Opening Doors, Inc. as he discussed unlocking financing tools that support immigrants and refugees.
CDFA EDA Revolving Loan Fund Webinar Series: Designing A Revolving Loan Fund Program to Meet Your Community’s Needs
The EDA Revolving Loan Fund Program helps small businesses access capital, especially when traditional lending institutions are not a good fit. The program allows for innovation, and many communities have designed their programs to meet the unique needs of their local business community. Listen as Tom Link with the URA of Pittsburgh, Michele Laird with CCD Business Development Corporation and Mara O'Neill with MCCD discuss how to design or modify an EDA Revolving Loan Fund program to address local demand, including how to set your rate and match as well as how to target underserved businesses such as minority and women owned businesses or micro enterprises and entrepreneurs.
CDFA EDA Revolving Loan Fund Webinar Series: Maximizing Revolving Loan Fund Impact
Revolving Loan Funds (RLFs) are finance tools that can be used to help grow small and mid-sized businesses. A RLF is a funding pool that replenishes itself through repayments of principal and grows through the payment of interest. While the majority of RLFs support local businesses, some target specific areas such as health care, technology, and infrastructure. Listen as Ryan Richardson, Randy Pellisero and Lonnie Saboor explore what has made their organizations EDA Revolving Loan Fund program so successful.
CDFA EDA Revolving Loan Fund Webinar Series: Exploring the Role of Revolving Loan Funds in Economic Development
Revolving Loans Funds (RLFs) are becoming an increasingly popular financing tool, but they are sometimes misunderstood or underutilized. RLFs serve as a gap-financing measure primarily used for the development and expansion of small businesses. While the majority of RLFs support local businesses, some target specific areas, such as healthcare, minority business development, and technology focused companies. Listen as Toby Rittner, Bob Isaacson and Brett Doney explore the role of RLFs in today’s economic development landscape.
View More Webcasts

CDFA National Sponsors

  • Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority
  • Baker Tilly Virchow Krause
  • Ballard Spahr LLP
  • BNY Mellon
  • Bricker & Eckler LLP
  • Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
  • Business Oregon
  • CohnReznick
  • FBT Project Finance Advisors LLC
  • Frost Brown Todd, LLC
  • Grant Thornton LLP
  • Hawkins Delafield & Wood LLP
  • Ice Miller LLP
  • KeyBanc Capital Markets
  • Kutak Rock LLP
  • MB Financial Bank, NA
  • McCarter & English, LLP
  • McGuireWoods
  • NW Financial Group, LLC
  • SB Friedman Development Advisors
  • Squire Patton Boggs
  • Stern Brothers
  • Stifel Nicolaus
  • U.S. Bank
  • Wells Fargo Securities
  • Wilmington Trust
  • Z. The Bond Buyer
Become a Sponsor