Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What is PeopleFund?

A: PeopleFund is a non-profit organization (registered 501(c)3) and Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI).  Our primary goal is to provide access to credit for clients who typically cannot get traditional funding.  We want our small businesses, start-ups, and nonprofits to grow into sustainable businesses. For this reason, we provide educational programs and resources. To learn more about us, visit the mission, our team, and about us pages. Para recibir información en español, visite la página En español.

Q: Are you a government program?

A: PeopleFund is not a government program but we do work with the Small Business Administration to provide SBA loan products.

 Q: Where do you get your funding?

A: We receive our funding from multiple sources.  Our clients’ repayment of their loans allows us to relend the money to new business owners.  We also receive grants from foundations, loans from banks, and investment from individuals like you. For more information on PeopleInvest, please click here.

Q: How do I make an appointment?

A: Please call 1.888.222.0017 or send an email to [email protected]

Q: Where is PeopleFund?

A: PeopleFund works throughout the state of Texas.

  • Austin: 2921 E. 17th Street Austin TX 78702 (See map)
  • Fort Worth: 1150 S. Freeway Fort Worth TX 76104  (See map)
  • El Paso: 6070 Gateway East # 105E El Paso TX 79905  (See map)
  • Dallas: 2801 Swiss Ave Suite 120 Dallas TX 75204 (See map)
  • San Antonio: 1811 S. Laredo Street Suite 108 San Antonio TX 78207 (See map)
  • Houston: 12337 Jones Rd Suite 407 Houston TX 77070 (See map)
  • Rio Grande Valley: 801 N. Bryan Rd. Suite 167 Mission TX 78572 (See map)

Q: How do I apply for a loan?

A:  To apply for a loan, please visit our website and click on “Get a loan

Q: How can I submit my application?

A: You may submit your application via the online form on our “Get a Loan” page. This is a secure application and all information is confidential and protected. For questions related to the online application, please contact us at [email protected]

Q: I sent in an application but I have not been contacted yet.  What do I do?

A: You will be contacted within 2 business days (Monday through Friday).  If you have not been contacted via email or phone within 2 full business days please contact our office at 1.888.222.0017.

Q: How long will the application process take?

A: Once we have a complete loan application package, it will typically take between 5-10 business days to know whether or not you are approved.  The length of the full process depends primarily on how quickly you are able to respond to requests for additional information and supporting documentation. SBA loans require additional time. Incomplete applications will delay the process.

Q: Am I eligible for a loan?

A: We work with small business owners in the state of Texas. This includes startup businesses, nonprofits, and mature businesses.

Q: Who do you lend to?

A: We lend to all types of businesses that are not illegal or in the adult industry.  For a look at our current clients please go here. Our mission is to lend to underserved markets including, but not limited to, women-owned businesses, minority-owned businesses, veteran-owned businesses, businesses located in low income areas, businesses creating jobs, non-profits and other clients not currently served within the traditional banking system.

Q: Do you help start-up businesses?

A: Yes.  We consider a start-up to be any business with less than 2 years of operations. We lend up to $100,000 to startup businesses. Most startups are best served with a SBA loan.

Q: What’s the largest loan amount I can receive?

A: Our maximum loan amount for a start-up business is $100,000.  Our maximum loan amount for an existing business is $250,000.  We will always evaluate each business individually to see how much debt the business can reasonably support.

Q: What are your rates?

A:  As a non-profit lender, we choose to lend to clients for maximum community impact.  We offer loan products that have both fixed and variable rates, and we offer interest rate discounts for job creation, community impact, sustainable/green business practices, veteran status, and other opportunities. For additional questions about our rates, please contact [email protected]

Q:  Can you help veterans?

A:  Yes.  We have discounted interest rates for veterans .We also offer business assistance and education programs to veterans. For more information on our PeopleVET program please click here.

Q: Do you provide grants?

A: No. We only provide loans and business education.

Q: Do you fund housing?

A: No, however; PeopleFund helped to incubate PeopleTrust which is now named HomeBase and is part of Austin Habitat for Humanity. For more information on housing, please visit HomeBase

Q: Can I apply for a Line of Credit?

A: We do consider a line of credit for some businesses when it is an appropriate solution for the business.  The application is the same for a term loan and a line of credit.

Q: What if I have a bad credit? Is there a minimum required credit score in order to apply?

A:  We do not have a minimum required credit score but your score may limit how much you can borrow.  If there are negative items on your credit report, we may require you to work on those items to rebuild your credit before we can give you the loan.  You can pull your credit report annually for free on annualcreditreport.com

Q: Do I need to have guarantors or co-signers?

A:  Sometimes we will require that you have a guarantor or co-signer on your loan.  This is to help strengthen the loan application.  A co-signer would have good credit, a monthly income that covers their household expenses and future loan payments if you are not able to pay on your loan.  However, we cannot use a co-signer’s credit instead of the primary applicant.  We evaluate each applicant’s credit on an individual basis.

Q: Do I need to have collateral to secure the loan?

A:  It depends. Our main loan products are loans secured through collateral.  Collateral is considered a form of repayment if you are otherwise unable to repay the loan.  We cannot consider your home or liquid financial assets as collateral.  We will consider business equipment, inventory, real estate, a vehicle you own free and clear, some accounts receivables, and some assignment of contracts.  A co-signer may also pledge collateral. If sufficient collateral is not available, we can still consider your request.

Q: What if I don’t have a business plan or tax returns or business financial statements?

A: Our partners can help you get prepared.  It is a requirement that you are current on your personal and business taxes.

Q: I submitted all of the information listed on the checklist.  Why are you requesting more information?

A: All of your supporting documentation allows us to get to know you and your business.  The more information you supply will help in determining the type of loan or business you have we may require more supporting documentation.

Q: What is the SBA loan program?

A: We are a certified SBA lender. We offer the SBA 7(a) Community advantage loans and participate in the SBA Microloan program. Your loan officer will help you determine if these products are an appropriate business solution.

Q: Do I need to be a citizen of the United States?

A: No, but you do need at least 2 years of tax returns filed in the United States, a social security number or I-TIN, legal residency in the State of Texas, and your business must be located in Texas.

Q: Does my business need to be registered?

A: Yes, you need to be registered with the State of Texas or you must have an Assumed Name Certificate (Doing Business As – DBA) filed in the appropriate county.