Headwaters RC&D Area, Inc. Revolving Loan Fund Programs are designed to stimulate economic development activity by assisting the private sector to create and retain jobs in Southwest Montana by filling the funding gap when alternative sources of public and private financing are not available and/or are inadequate.

Our main lending function is to provide an alternative choice for entrepreneurs and new or existing business owners who do not qualify for or have access to traditional commercial bank funds. We also partner with banks to meet financing needs. Loan amounts range from $5,000 to $150,000 (may be higher in certain circumstances). Funds may be used for working capital needs; property and equipment; remodeling; inventory; or to purchase an existing business. Additional uses may be considered.


Typically, interest rates range from 6% to 8% (fixed for the term of the loan). Rates are determined at time of loan application depending on loan program and current interest rate environments. Flexible terms of generally 5-20 years depending on use of funds and useful life of collateral being financed. Loans are collateralized with available assets with flexible coverage levels and subordinate collateral positions. Personal assets may be required.


Fees include a 1%-2% origination fee, $100 Credit Report fee due with the loan application. Additional closing costs may be required, and will be determined at time of loan closing. Business development and technical assistance services are available during the application process, as well as over the life of the loan.


Although many services provided by Headwaters are free of charge, it is important to understand that in order to facilitate a productive counseling session, the client should develop as much information as possible about the business they would like to start or expand.


1. Contact Headwaters RC&D Area, Inc.'s Loan Department to determine preliminary qualifications and documentation needed to complete the loan application process


Email: marcher@headwatersrcd.org

Phone:  406.565.2270


2. Gather Required Documentation


A Headwaters Loan Officer will work with you to analyze your loan request and ask you to complete our loan application, provide financial information, including a list of project costs. All of the Headwaters loan programs require a formal Business Plan. At this point you may be referred to Headwaters Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for assistance in developing and/or reviewing your business plan.


Additional application documentation will be determined by the Loan Officer. An appraisal or determination of value will be required for all real estate related requests, as well as environmental information.

3. Loan Underwriting Process

Once it has been determined that your loan application is complete, the underwriting process will begin. At that time a determination of financial eligibility will be established, assuming that sufficient collateral is available to meet specific program requirements.

4. Loan Approval Process


Once it is determined that the loan application meets the specific program requirements, including meeting all fiscal and job creation/retention thresholds, a Credit Request is presented to Headwaters Loan Review Committee (LRC). All of loans are approved by a nine member LRC comprised of members from a variety of occupations throughout Headwaters seven county economic development area.

5. Loan Closing


Once a loan is approved by Headwaters Loan Review Committee, the closing process begins. Collateral valuations, title commitments (if real estate is involved), and any other required documentation must be received by Headwaters prior to execution of loan documents. At this point, loan documentation is executed and the funding process is completed.

The entire loan application process from beginning to loan closing may take up to 30-45 days depending on the complexity of the loan request, as well as the time needed to develop an acceptable business plan. It is the desire of Headwaters to expedite a loan request, as well as structure the request to meet the financing needs of the loan applicant. We are dedicated to providing the technical assistance necessary to meet our common goals.


For more information contact:


Mike Archer

Director of Capital Solutions           




Business Planning Guide


Cash Flow Projection Worksheet

Business Loan Application

Business Plan Template

Business Plan


Fiscal Information


  • CPA prepared financial statement for most recent 3 years of operation

  • A current financial statement within 60 days of the loan application

  • Existing debt schedule

  • Current aging of accounts receivable and accounts payable

  • Most recent 3 years business federal income tax returns


All Individuals with 20% or Greater Ownership


  • Resume

  • Personal financial statement

  • 3 years federal income tax returns

  • Personal credit check release


Big Sky Trust Fund Grant Program (BSTF)

Prospera helps companies submit grants to the MT Department of Commerce job creation program which has an open grant cycle. These business grants are competitive and only available to companies creating new full-time high-wage jobs in Montana, and that have or growing to have at least 50% of their revenue from out-of-state markets. Grants are submitted on behalf of the local government (city/county) where the business is located.

More information can be found here

MT Incumbent Worker Training Grants (IWT)

The Montana Incumbent Worker Training Program (IWT) is a wonderful resource for many Montana companies and Prospera is eager to help our members secure these funds. However, not all companies, employees or trainings qualify for this grant. We have compiled a checklist for vetting whether it is appropriate for Propsera members to apply for this grant.

More information can be found here

State Trade Expansion Program (STEP)

Exporting could be the right next move for your business, and our STEP grant can help.The Montana STEP grant, funded in part by a grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration, helps new and experienced exporters with expanding in to new international markets. Exporters can get a 50% reimbursement of the cost of international marketing activities to help offset the risk of trying out new markets or new tactics.

More information can be found here

USDA Grants

The US Department of Agriculture offers Rural Business Development Grants (RBEG). These competitive grants are only available 1x per year usually in the spring.

More information can be found here