How Do Disabled Veterans Get Small Business Loans

Disabled Veterans Get Small Business Loans and Grants

Service-disabled Veteran Business Loans and Grants

The federal government aims to award at least 3% of all federal contracting dollars to service-disabled veteran small businesses annually. The government reduces competition for specific government contracts to companies that participate in the Service-Disabled Veteran owned Small Business program. Joining the disabled veterans’ small business program makes these veteran business owners eligible to compete for the program’s set-aside contracts. Borrowers can still compete for contract awards under other socio-economic programs they qualify for:

Table of contents:

  1. Office Of Veterans Business Development
  2. Small Business Financing Options For Veteran-Owned Small Businesses
    • SBA Loans
    • Hivers And Strivers Angel Funds
    • StreetShares Foundation
  3. Veteran Contracting
  4. Eligibility Qualifications For Veteran Business Loans And Grants
  5. Online Business Loans

Office Of Veterans Business Development

Office Of Veterans Business Development

Devoted solely to promoting veteran entrepreneurship, the office of veterans business development (OVBD) facilitates the use of all the U.S. Small Business Administration SBA loan programs by a service-disabled veteran, veterans, active-duty service members, reservists, transitioning service members, and survivors or their dependents.

SBA loan programs offer access to capital and preparation for small business opportunities. Additionally, they can also connect veteran small business owners with commercial supply chains and federal procurement.  Typically, the Veteran Business Outreach Center Program is an OVBD initiative that oversees (VBOC) Veterans Business Outreach Centers across the country. This program features several success stories and provides concept assessments, business plan workshops, training, and mentorship for eligible veterans. 

Small Business Financing Options For Veteran Owned Small Businesses

Veteran Owned Small Businesses

You can utilize SBA tools such as Lender Match to connect with small business lenders. In addition, SBA makes special consideration for U.S. veterans through several loan programs. 


The Military Reservist Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program MREIDL

This program provides loans of up to $ 2 million to cover operating costs that cannot be met because of the loss of an essential employee called to active duty in the National Guard or Reserves.

Small Business Administration Loans
SBA Loans

The U.S Small Business Administrations is not a lender (except for SBA Disaster loans); however, instead, SBA guarantees loans made by participating lenders, like credit unions, online lenders, traditional lenders, and nonprofit organizations. If you have seen the terms VA SBA loans, you might think the VA makes SBA loans, but it doesn’t. Typically, there is no VA SBA loan program. Previously, there was a program specifically for veteran entrepreneurs known as the Patriot Express Pilot Program. Nonetheless, that program was discounted in 2013. Nonetheless, many SBA loan programs are accessible to all qualifying small business owners- including veteran small business owners- and there are some special breaks on fees for veterans. The main SBA loan programs include:

  • Paycheck Protection Program PPP loans
  • SBA Express Loans
  • SBA 7a loans
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loans
  • 504 CDC loans
  • SBA Microloans

The SBA Veterans Advantage program that waived the upfront, one-time loan guaranty fee for veteran loans under the SBA Express programs expired.  If you are seeking an SBA loan program, you will need to work with an SBA lender. Bear in mind that whereas SBA lenders must make sure these loans meet the SBA’s minimum eligibility requirements, they may also have their own loan requirements. SBA loans have competitive interest rates, favorable repayment terms and loan terms.

Hivers And Strivers Angel Funds

Hivers And Strivers Angel Funds

Hivers And Strivers Angel Funds

Instead of a loan, U.S. military veterans looking for investment capital should check out the Hivers and Strivers Angel Fund. This program was invested mainly for small businesses led by veterans, and many of the small business owners they have funded are service academy graduates. Among the eligibility requirements, your company must be beyond the concept stage and should be positioned for significant growth and led by a military veteran.

StreetShares Foundation

StreetShares Foundation

Generally, the StreetShares Foundation presents the Military Entrepreneur Challenge with the Samuel Adams Brewing the American Dream program. 

This official site is for searching for government grants. Federal government grant opportunities are listed at, while small business funding options are listed at There are many opportunities listed, so take time to review grant and loan opportunities to see if they apply to your company. 

Online Loans

The good news about this option is that The Megaphone on Mainstreet report discovered that online lenders and alternative lenders approved veterans’ loan requests twice as often as non-veterans. Numerous online small business lenders provide various types of small business loan options ranging from working capital loans, business credit cards, commercial real estate loans, term loans, invoice factoring, loans for bad credit equipment financing, and business lines of credit. Online lenders provide funding to startups, new businesses, and established businesses.

Qualifying for these loans usually requires a personal credit score above 550, business plans, financial statements, cash flow statements, tax returns, and business bank account statements.

Veteran Contracting

The SBA provides federal programs that assist veteran-owned small businesses to access the federal surplus personal property and contract awards. 

Surplus Personal Property for Veteran-Owned Small Business Programs Offers veteran small business owners access to the federally owned personal property no longer in use via the General Services Administration’s Federal Surplus Personal Property Donation Program.
The service-disabled veteran-owned small business program This contracting assistance program lets eligible service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses compete for the programs set aside contracts.

Eligibility Qualifications For Veteran Business Loans And Grants

Veteran Business Loans And Grants

Typically, to qualify for small business loans for military veterans, you must fall into one of the following categories: 

  1. National Guard Members and Reservists
  2. Active Duty Military service member who is taking part in the military’s Transition Assistance Programs (TAP)
  3. Service-Disabled Veterans
  4. Honorably Discharged Veterans ( some business grants might specify a particular conflict or period)
  5. Has registered and is in “verified” status in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  6. Military spouses: Be a current spouse of any veteran, any reservist or National Guard member, Active Duty service member, or a widowed spouse of a service member who died of a service-connected disability or while in service. 

How do disabled veterans get veteran small business loans: Final Thoughts

disabled veteran small business loans

While funding through business grants or small business loans is usually top of mind for any small business owner, including veterans, other business resources can help veterans looking to start a business or enter the business ownership industry. Veteran small business owners can seek out their local veterans’ business outreach centers for various resources for veterans, including training programs to adjust to civilian life, business training including boots to business, technical assistance, and other tools that might not be accessible at traditional small business development centers.