Alternative Financing Program

This provides small businesses an alternative financing to the interest-based system.

The Alternative Financing program provides small Minneapolis businesses (neighborhood retail, service or light manufacturing) an alternative financing to the interest-based system that is in accordance with Islamic law, or Sharia. The program provides financing to purchase equipment and/or make building improvements. A private lender provides half the financing at their rate of return, and the City provides the rest, up to $50,000, at a 2 percent rate of return. The term (up to 10 years) is set by the lender. Private lender fees vary, and the City charges an origination fee of 1 percent of the City’s principal amount with a minimum of $150, due at closing.

Terms and conditions

  • Applicant must repay the funds and be an acceptable credit risk
  • All rehab work and equipment installation must meet Minneapolis city codes    
  • Applicant must comply with the Minneapolis zoning ordinances             
  • Must make efforts to hire Minneapolis residents by working with the City’s Workforce Coordinator
  • Use contractors licensed in Minneapolis
  • Proceeds cannot be used for billboard advertising
  • The city cannot finance any work started prior to the closing

Who is eligible

  • All businesses in the City of Minneapolis
  • The applicant may be individual owners, partnerships, corporations, tenant operators or contract for deed partners.
  • Businesses that benefit low-to-moderate income persons by creating jobs or improving service

Eligible uses

  • Lighting
  • Windows
  • Walls, ceilings, floors
  • Roofing
  • Plumbing
  • Electrical
  • Mechanical Systems and Air Conditioning
  • All work on the front and sides of business buildings facing public streets
  • Cleaning, painting and staining of exterior surfaces
  • Masonry repairs
  • Repairing or replacing of cornices, entrances, doors, windows, decorative details and awnings
  • Sign removal, repairing or replacement
  • Architectural design services for plans and specifications
  • Parking lots, including lighting, surfacing and landscaping
  • Building identification
  • Other items that are viewed necessary to complement the exterior of the building
  • Building permits
  • Energy audits
  • Energy conservation and energy retrofits
  • Handicap access
  • Streetscape costs not financed by special assessment
  • Production equipment
  • Computers on a case-by-case basis only

How to apply

All programs and guidelines are subject to change without notice.

Request accessible format

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Contact us

Jennifer Schultz

Community Planning & Economic Development

 

Phone

612-673-5094

Address

Public Service Building
505 Fourth Ave. S., Room 320
Minneapolis, MN 55415