Economic Development

This section is loaded with information and links regarding loans, lines of credit, grants, gap financing, tax credits, and equity investments.  Development support ranges from construction, improvements, demolition or rehabilitation of buildings, site and capital improvements to architectural and engineering, surveying, and similar professional services.  Also available are resources that offer financial tools for business expansion, information on real estate purchase, development and redevelopment, neighborhood retail, and emerging business development.

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Detroit LISC

The Detroit Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) is a local organization within the national LISC network. Detroit LISC provides loans, lines of credit, grants, recoverable grants, and equity investments to help community development organizations revitalize their neighborhoods. Community projects typically include: For-sale and rental housing, Community facilities (childcare centers, schools, health care facilities, playing fields), and Economic development projects, including industrial, office, and retail building.

Detroit LISC provides creative and flexible financial products that meet a variety of real estate development needs and works with groups to consult, problem solve, and assist with all types of financing opportunities: Other products LISC provides are Predevelopment and acquisition loans, construction loans, working capital loans and lines of credit, guarantees, mini permanent loans, low income housing tax credits, new markets tax credit.  More than just financing, LISC supports community based organizations with technical and management assistance and local, statewide and national policy support. For more information, call Detroit LISC at 313.596.8222 or visit http://www.lisc.org/detroit/index.php

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Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority

The Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority was created in 1978 by the Michigan State Legislature to plan, develop and promote the greater Detroit area as a freight transportation and distribution hub for the Great Lakes. The Port Authority oversees and promotes commercial and recreation activities along 32 miles of the Detroit River from Lake St. Clair to the Wayne/Monroe County border.  The Port Authority is the primary public conduit between private sector businesses in the Port of Detroit. In this role the Port Authority offers assistance in capital finance, development, applications and disbursement of public sector and foundation grant programs.

Structured Financing Program Growth 

The Port Authority offers assistance in capital finance, development, applications and disbursement of public sector and foundation grant programs. Investment for port infrastructure and other waterfront redevelopment activities is one of the most critical roles the Port Authority plays. For more information on Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority's Economic Development Program, visit http://www.portdetroit.com or call 313.259.5091.

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Economic Development Foundation

EDF is in the business of making things happen for small business. They help originate, close and service SBA 504 Loans. As a Certified Development Company that was founded in 1981, they have 30 years of experience to guide you through each step of the way. Their expert staff knows how to make the process simple, fast and successful – for both the small business in need of financing and the lending institution seeking to minimize loan risk.

Structured Financing Program Growth 

The SBA 504 loan program is a long-term financing tool, designed to encourage economic development within a community. The 504 program accomplishes this by providing small businesses with long-term, fixed-rate financing to acquire major fixed assets for expansion or modernization.  The 504 program makes it easier for the borrower to obtain favorable financing terms and reduces the risk to the lending institution. For more information visit www.growmichigan.com

Debt Refinancing Program

The long awaited Debt Refinance Program has now become law. Traditionally, the only way for the 504 Loan Program to refinance real estate or equipment debt was if the borrower was also finacing an expansion project. This new legislation will now allow borrowers to refinance existing real estate and/or equipment debt, up to 90%, without the need for expansion.

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Invest Detroit

Invest Detroit is a leading source of private sector gap financing that utilizes a variety of funding tools through managed for-profit and non-profit targeted funds to support economic and community development in underserved communities primarily in the City of Detroit.  Invest Detroit and its related entities were formed to facilitate funding from the public, private and foundation sectors and to address targeted needs of the communities it serves. Representing $110 million in funds and tax credits, Invest Detroit serves as a platform to meet a broad range of financing needs to support business expansion and real estate development, the creation and retention of jobs, and the revitalization of distressed areas.

Invest Detroit represents the vision of the Board of Directors and management of the Detroit Investment Fund (DIF), which was created and funded in 1995 by members of Detroit Renaissance, now known as Business Leaders for Michigan.  In 2010, the DIF Board and management team enhanced and transitioned the capabilities of DIF to create Invest Detroit, which serves as an umbrella entity for DIF and other for-profit and non-profit managed funds.  The efforts of Invest Detroit are intended to promote job creation, expansion of the tax base and an improved quality of life for the communities it serves.Invest Detroit’s financing tools support a variety of needs including business expansion and purchase of equipment, real estate development and redevelopment, predevelopment costs, neighborhood retail, emerging business’ development costs, and New Markets Tax Credits. Loans for strategic projects are considered when the potential exists for a long-term, clear benefit which is critical to the economic development of the City of Detroit.  This emphasizes the Fund’s commitment to economic revitalization by financing projects that would likely not be completed without the participation of Invest Detroit.

Invest Detroit invests in eligible projects or companies from several different funding sources which include Detroit Investment Fund (DIF) , New Markets Tax Credits (NMTC), Lower Woodward Housing Fund (LWHF), Predevelopment Loan Funds, Urban Retail Loan Fund (URLF), and First Step Fund.  The economic development efforts of Invest Detroit have resulted in 2,000 jobs created or retained, 1,490 housing units created or renovated, 2,230,657 residential square feet developed, 1,626,010 commercial square feet developed, and 40,000 retail square feet developed.  For more information, call the Invest Detroit office at 313.259.6368 or visit http://www.investdetroit.com.

Detroit Investment Fund (DIF)

The Detroit Investment Fund (DIF) is a source of private sector financing designed to be a catalyst for investment in Detroit by financing qualified commercial projects and entities to stimulate economic development and job creation. The DIF provides gap financing intended to leverage owner equity so that the transaction merits traditional bank/senior lender financing. Investments in strategic projects are considered when potential exists for a significant long-term, clear benefit to the economic development of Detroit that would likely not be completed without the DIF.

Eligible projects include business expansion, capital improvements, purchase of equipment, working capital, purchase of real property, commercial real estate development, and strategic investments that create a long-term benefit for the community. DIF provides loans that leverage owner equity to merit traditional financing, offers flexibility in structuring financing, and provides access to senior level expertise in a variety of industries.

Sponsors must have a proven track record and personal investment in the project, clear exit strategy for the Fund with expected repayment within 5-7 years, and significant economic impact in the City of Detroit. Loan size is from $500,000 to $2.5 million. For more specific loan criteria for Business and Equipment Loans or Real Estate Loans or general information, visit http://www.investdetroit.com or call 313.259.6368.

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Michigan Economic Developers Association (MEDA)

MEDA exists to advance economic development in Michigan by providing a range of services and programs to enhance economic development skills. By offering programs, education classes, public relations, networking opportunities, advocacy, and other programs and services. MEDA makes it possible for economic development professionals statewide to be up to date/educated on the most successful economic development practices.

Certified Business Park (CBP) Program

The Michigan CBP has set the standard for business/industrial parks in Michigan for over 40 years, letting prospective occupants know that they can expect to find uniformity and high-quality characteristics within certified parks and that their investment in that property is secure.  Sites in Certified Business Parks are shovel-ready.  The CBP Program is a revamp of the Certified Industrial Park (CIP) Program.  Any municipality/owner/developer can prepare a park based on the CBP standards. There is no minimum acreage requirement. For purposes of certification, conforming zoning uses would include all activities typical for a business/industrial park setting with the exception of residential and retail.  The local zoning ordinance or protective covenants will define those uses allowed.  For applications, please contact MEDA at 517.241.0011 or visit www.wedaweb.org

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Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) is a public-private partnership serving as the state's marketing arm and lead agency for business, talent and jobs, tourism, film and digital incentives, arts and cultural grants, and overall economic growth. MEDC offers a number of business assistance services and capital programs for business attraction and acceleration, economic gardening, entrepreneurship, strategic partnerships, talent enhancement, and urban and community development. MEDC, founded in 1999, also developed, and manages the state's popular Pure Michigan brand.

Michigan Community Revitalization Program (MCRP)

The Michigan Community Revitalization Program (MCRP) is an incentive program available from the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF), in cooperation with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). The program is designed to promote community revitalization through the provision of grants, loans or other economic assistance for eligible investment projects. MCRP funds can be used along with ACT 381/Tax Increment Financing (TIF) to fund projects. Projects must be located on an Eligible Property, meaning property meeting one or more of the following conditions:

  • Facility;
  • Historic Resource;
  • Blighted;
  • Functionally Obsolete; or
  • Adjacent or contiguous to a property described above, if the development of the adjacent and contiguous property is estimated to increase the taxable value of the property described above.

 MSF support will be determined based on a needs analysis; however, under no condition will the MSF support exceed 25% of the total eligible investment for a single project. As part of the needs analysis, four (4) different criteria are reviewed for each project to determine the appropriate level of MSF support:

  • Project Cash Flow and Ability to Support Debt;
  • Project Loan to Value;
  • Project Costs; and
  • The Owner's Equity Contribution.
  • Generally, no funds will be disbursed until the project is verified as complete.

For more information on the MCRP incentives, visit http://www.michiganbusiness.org or contact the MEDC Customer Assistance Center at 517.373.9808.

Michigan Community Development Block Grant Community Development Initiatives

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) allocates Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) funding to the State of Michigan, through the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) with assistance from the MEDC, for distribution to eligible Units of General Local Government (UGLGs) to carry out MSF approved activities.

The Michigan CDBG program funds generally target economic development, downtown development, and housing projects. For a complete summary of the approved programs, refer to Michigan's Consolidated Plan.

The economic and downtown development portions of the State’s CDBG Program are administered by the MEDC on behalf of the MSF. Proposals are considered and evaluated continuously based upon the MSF's approved Application Guide

Eligible program uses include:

  • Blight Elimination Grants
  • Business Assistance Loans through the Revolving Loan Program
  • Direct Assistance to Business Grants
  • Façade Improvement Grants
  • Infrastructure Grants- Business Development and Downtown Development
  • Planning Grants
  • Signature Building Acquisition Grants

For more information, contact the MEDC Customer Assistance Center at 888.522.0103 or visit www.michiganbusiness.org.

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Nonprofit Finance Fund® (NFF®)

Since 1980, Nonprofit Finance Fund® (NFF®) has made over $575 million in loans to nonprofits in support of over $1.5 billion in projects. Our financing helps nonprofits manage growth, build and renovate facilities, balance government contract payments and cash flow and bridge capital campaigns, so organizations can better serve their clients and communities. As a federally recognized Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) with almost 30 years of experience financing nonprofits, NFF is flexible and tailors loans to individual clients based on their unique financial story, plans and capacity. NFF® loans can help your organization:

  • Purchase, build or renovate a facility, including leasehold improvements
  • Upgrade equipment necessary to your organization's operation
  • Manage timing of receivables from government grants or capital campaigns
  • Expand programs or grow an earned income or social venture
  • Temporarily smooth cash flow to meet day-to-day operating cash needs

NFF loans typically range between $100,000 and $2 million and are used for facility loans, working capital loans, and equipment loans.

New Markets Tax Credit Program (NMTC)

The NMTC program, administered by the CDFI Fund of the US Treasury Department, uses tax credits to attract private investment to low-income communities. Nonprofit Finance Fund® (NFF®)  has been awarded $231-million in tax credit allocations since 2007, which we are using to make flexible financing available to nonprofit borrowers in these communities. Our allocations have helped finance health centers, a nonprofit theatre, headquarters for social services providers, charter schools, and a statewide food bank, among others. 

To find out more information visit http://nonprofitfinancefund.org/loans-financing/new-markets-tax-credit or contact your nearest NFF office.

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Section 108 Loan Guarantee Program

Section 108 is the loan guarantee component of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. Section 108 provides communities with a source of financing for economic development, housing rehabilitation, public facilities, and large-scale physical development projects. This flexibility makes it one of the most potent and important public investment tools that HUD offers to local governments. The Section 108 loan guarantee program allows local governments to transform a small portion of their CDBG funds into federally guaranteed loans large enough to pursue physical and economic revitalization projects capable of renewing entire neighborhoods. Such public investment is often needed to inspire private economic activity, providing the initial resources or simply the confidence that private firms and individuals may need to invest in distressed areas. Local governments borrowing funds guaranteed by HUD through the Section 108 program must pledge their current and future CDBG allocations as security for the loan. For more information, visit: https://www.hudexchange.info/section-108/