By Megan Sayles,
AFRO Business Writer,

The D.C. Small Business Development Center (DCSBDC) will host a Meet the Bankers event on May 10 at the Howard University School of Business. The event will start at 10:00 a.m. in the school’s auditorium. 

More than 15 bankers will attend the event to talk to entrepreneurs about qualifying for business loans. They will also help entrepreneurs navigate the loan application process. 

“They’re going to be talking about how to qualify for lending so you can get that loan that your business needs,” said  Carl Brown, executive state director of DCSBDC. “They’re going to tell you exactly how to do it, and my counselors will be there to help you put the application together.” 

DCSBDC helps District residents start, grow, maintain and finance small businesses. It provides one-on-one consulting, training and resources to entrepreneurs and offers workshops on various business issues, like cybersecurity, accessing capital and procurement contracts. 

According to Brown, it’s critical for entrepreneurs to have a strong relationship with their business banker in order to successfully grow and maintain their businesses. 

He also urged business owners to refrain from commingling their personal and business funds. Instead, they should always keep their company bank account separate from their household bank account. 

If entrepreneurs learn one thing from DCSBDC’s Meet the Bankers event, Brown hopes that it’s to build their personal credit scores, especially if they are operating a new business. 

“When you are a new business, your personal credit score is what they look at,” said Brown. “After you establish yourself, your personal credit will not be much of a factor in whether or not you’re going to qualify for loans, but that’s after you’ve been in business for 10 years or longer.” 

Megan Sayles is a Report for America Corps member.