Business Loan Amounts by State, Industry, and More: How Much Do You Need?
As we cover The State of Small Business in 2022, we’ll look at how much funding for small businesses varies by state, over time, and by industry. Using data from the Small Business Administration (SBA), we calculated that the average loan amount for small businesses has increased by 27% since 2020.1,2,3
If you’re starting your own small business or looking to expand, knowing what the loan landscape looks like will help you find the best small-business loans for you. We also have tools to help you decide how much funding your small business needs to get started.
We’ll cover a variety of national and state statistics for SBA loans:
- In 2021, Georgia funded an average small-business loan amount of just over $1 million, the highest in the US.
- California was the only other state with an average loan amount of over $1 million. Four states averaged over $900,000 per loan: South Carolina, Texas, North Carolina, and Tennessee.
- Hawaii had the lowest average loan amount approved in 2021 at $330,000. Three other states received average loan amounts under $400,000: New Hampshire, Vermont, and Ohio.
Living in a state with higher funding may mean easier access to funds. On the other hand, living in a state with less funding may mean there’s less competition in your area. Plus, with a shift toward eCommerce, you can start your business almost anywhere.
Overall, we can see that small-business funding is available in every state and the average loan amount has grown over the past three decades.
Since 1991, the average small business loan amount has increased by 202%. The SBA has approved an average of over 60,000 small-business loans per year.
The SBA funded the highest number of loans in 2007, with 110,276 loans at an average of $186,859 per loan. Although the period between 2005 and 2007 saw the highest number of loans, the last five years (2017–2021) saw the most funding from the SBA.
Funding for small-business loans is more available across the US than ever before, but knowing which industries are getting the most funding may inspire you to start growing your business.
Loan amount by industry in 2021
Median Loan Approval
Minimum loan approval
Maximum loan approval
|Accommodation and Food Services||$488,000||$3,000||$5,194,000|
|Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services||$187,350||$4,500||$5,000,000|
|Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting||$300,000||$4,600||$5,000,000|
|Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation||$349,000||$3,000||$5,000,000|
|Finance and Insurance||$350,000||$10,000||$5,000,000|
|Health Care and Social Assistance||$449,400||$5,000||$5,065,000|
|Management of Companies and Enterprises||$495,000||$38,000||$4,000,000|
|Mining, Quarrying, and Oil and Gas Extraction||$400,000||$10,000||$5,000,000|
|Other Services (except Public Administration)||$320,500||$1,500||$5,000,000|
|Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services||$299,000||$5,000||$5,000,000|
|Real Estate and Rental and Leasing||$500,000||$5,000||$5,500,000|
|Transportation and Warehousing||$120,000||$3,500||$5,000,000|
- Food services, construction, IT, and arts and entertainment had loans approved as low as $3,000. These industries have a lower barrier to entry and smaller loans may help businesses grow in ways they need without taking on a larger loan.
- Want to start a construction business? Most business owners are approved of a loan of around $217,000. While accommodation and food service businesses are most commonly approved for loans of around $488,000.
- With the smallest range for loan amounts, telecommunications has the highest minimum ($40,000) and lowest maximum ($2,634,000) for loan funding.
Industry loan funding as a percent of the whole
SBA funding is spread across various industries, but with funds ranging from $3.7 million up to $7.2 billion, some industries receive far more of that funding than others.
Top industries like accommodation and food services, retail trade, health care and social assistance, and manufacturing get approved for billions of dollars and make up more than 10% of the total SBA funding.
Meanwhile, some industries like information, utilities, and public administration were approved for millions of dollars in 2021, but they make up less than 1% of the total funding.
Finding funding for your small business in 2022
While loan amounts differ by state and industry, the SBA has increased funding over the past three decades, especially in the past five years. That means, whatever funding your small business may need, there’s a good chance you can get approved for a loan.
If you’d like to know how much money you actually need to get your business going, check out our startup cost guide.
We used data from the US Small Business Administration’s 7(a) and 504 loan programs to calculate the average loan amount approved per state in the fiscal year 2021. We also calculated the minimum, median, and maximum amount of money approved for specific industries in the fiscal year 2021.
We pulled lender activity reports from the Small Business Association to calculate the total number of 7(a) and 504 loans and the average loan amount approved in the years 2019–2021.
- US Small Business Administration, “7(a) & 504 FOIA - FOIA - 7(a)(FY2010-FY2019).” Accessed January 17, 2022.
- US Small Business Administration, “7(a) & 504 FOIA - FOIA - 504 (FY1991-Present).” Accessed January 17, 2022.
- US Small Business Administration, “Activity Reports — Dataset.” Accessed January 17, 2022.