Harvest SBA Small Business Loan Review 2022

After exploring Harvest’s website, customer reviews, and more, we’re ready to give you our honest take on this SBA lender.
An SBA lender for real estate
Harvest
Harvest
1.8 out of 5 stars
1.8
  • con
    Up to Prime + 2.75% interest
  • pro
    Competitive interest rates
  • pro
    SBA-preferred lender
  • con
    Very negative customer reviews
  • con
    Really bad website

Data as of 4/4/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

We are committed to sharing unbiased reviews. Some of the links on our site are from our partners who compensate us. Read our editorial guidelines and advertising disclosure.

Despite the generic name, Harvest Small Business Finance offers just one very specific type of financing: real estate loans backed by the U.S. Small Business Administration (aka SBA business loans).

Of course, plenty of lenders (including banks and online lenders) offer SBA loans. So what makes Harvest special? Well, aside from having the perks of any SBA lender (like low interest rates), Harvest is an SBA-preferred lender―meaning it works faster than many other lenders. But terrible customer reviews and a shockingly bad website keep us from recommending Harvest.

Still want to know more? Then let’s get this Harvest business loan review on the road.

Pros
pro Competitive interest rates
pro SBA-preferred lender
Cons
con Very negative customer reviews
con Really bad website
con One type of financing

Harvest review table of contents

Harvest loans and pricing

As we said up top, you won’t find lines of credit, merchant cash advances, or even generic small-business loans from Harvest. Instead, Harvest Small Business Finance focuses entirely on SBA loans―SBA 7(a) loans, to get more specific.

Now, many lenders let you get SBA 7(a) loans for working capital or equipment purchases. Not Harvest, though. Harvest offers SBA 7(a) loans just for commercial real estate. With its SBA loans, you can either purchase owner-occupied real estate or refinance your existing commercial real estate loan.

Compare Harvest products and pricing

Product
Min./max. loan amount
Max LTV
Interest rate
Get a loan
SBA 7(a) loan$200,000/$5 million93%Up to Prime + 2.75%

Data as of 4/4/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Fortunately, you can get pretty large business loans through Harvest―up to $5 million―giving you plenty of capital for your real estate purchase. Harvest lets you borrow up to 93% of the real estate’s value.

And like any SBA lender, Harvest offers competitive interest rates. The U.S. Small Business Administration sets the maximum interest rate for SBA 7(a) real estate loans at the Prime rate + 2.75%. Since the Prime rate is currently 3.5%,1 that means you’ll have a maximum interest rate of 6.25% on your business loan.

Note you’ll also have to cover some typical SBA loan fees. Expect to pay 3.0% to 3.5% in fees for loans in this size range. (And remember, you’d pay these fees at any SBA loan company.)

Of course, all this assumes you qualify for a Harvest small-business loan. Annoyingly, Harvest Small Business Finance doesn’t list its minimum business loan requirements. (SBA lenders can, to a degree, set their own borrower requirements.) But based on what we’ve seen from other SBA lenders, we expect it looks for the following:

  • Business that’s more than two years old
  • Personal credit score of at least 675
  • More than $100,000 in annual revenue

Sound doable? Then let’s talk more about what makes Harvest good.

Harvest features

We’ve found a couple features that make Harvest worth considering.

First, the interest rates. We already pointed these out to you. And sure, you may find lower interest rates from a traditional bank. But the regulated interest rates on SBA loans makes them very competitive when compared to alternative business loans from online lenders.

Second, Harvest is what’s called an SBA-preferred lender. That doesn’t just mean the Small Business Administration thinks Harvest is cool―it means Harvest can make lending decisions in-house instead of requiring SBA approval.

That matters because SBA loans can take a long time. The approval process can drag out from days to weeks with a non-preferred lender.

But as an SBA-preferred lender, Harvest brags that it offers loan approvals in just two to four days. Yeah, you’re still looking at 30 days until closing―but you’ll know whether or not you’ve been approved way faster than you would from many other lenders.

That said, neither of these features is unique to Harvest. So let’s talk about how Harvest compares to the competition.

Harvest vs. the competition

We think it’s safe to say that Harvest mostly competes with other SBA lenders. Here’s how it stacks up against four other lending companies―including both online lenders and traditional banks.

Compare Harvest vs. competitors

Lender
Min./max. loan amount
Rates
Funding options
Get a loan
$200,000/$5 million6.25% interestSBA 7(a) loans
$10,000/$5 million2.99% APRSBA loans, term loans, lines of credit, & more
$5,000/$250,0006.25% interestSBA loans, term loans, & lines of credit
$500/$5 million4.25% interestSBA loans, term loans, lines of credit, & more
$30,000/$5 million6.25% interestSBA 7(a) loans, term loans, & more

Data as of 4/4/22. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

The biggest difference between Harvest and other companies? Harvest offers the fewest lending options. As we said, Harvest has only SBA 7(a) loans―and only real estate ones, at that.

In contrast, other lenders offer SBA loans―including 7(a) loans for working capital―in addition to things like term loans, lines of credit, and other kinds of business financing.

That means other lenders may have funding options better suited to your small business―or at least options that can serve as backups if you don’t get approved for an SBA loan.

Of course, there is the speed thing. Lending marketplaces like Funding Circle, Lendio, and SmartBiz will move slower than Harvest Small Business Finance. But many traditional lenders, like Bank of America, are also SBA-preferred lenders―letting them move just as quickly as Harvest can.

Harvest drawbacks

You may have noticed that we haven’t exactly been gushing about Harvest Small Business Finance. That’s because Harvest has some real downsides. And it’s time to address those.

Negative reviews

By far, Harvest’s biggest drawback is its customer reviews. They are, quite simply, terrible.

Harvest earns a 1.13 out of 5 on its Better Business Bureau profile.2 Now, we know that businesses usually get harsher reviews on their BBB pages, and we’ve seen lenders get low scores on the BBB that get good scores elsewhere.

But the reviews themselves really concern us. They mostly come from small-business owners who got (or tried to get) PPP loans through Harvest. And to Harvet’s credit, we understand lots of lenders messed up the PPP loan process. Just . . . not this badly.

Business owners complain that Harvest messed up their paperwork (meaning they couldn’t get a second PPP loan), never disbursed the full PPP loan amount, sent the loan proceeds to the wrong bank account, refuse to answer communications (or even hang up on business owners), won’t accept PPP loan forgiveness applications, and have plenty of other issues.

In other words, it looks like Harvest made a real mess of things. And sure, these complaints all focus on PPP loans rather than its usual SBA 7(a) loans. But if it does this bad of a job with PPP loans, do you really want to trust Harvest with a real estate loan?

Website

We saw a couple reviews that accuse Harvest of being a scam company. And honestly, looking at its website, we get it.

Harvest might have the worst website we’ve seen from a lender. You can’t apply for its business loans online, for starters. But Harvest also doesn’t have basic information about things like borrower requirements or interest rates (outside of an ugly widget that lists the Prime rate).

And we really cannot overstate how bad the website looks. That might sound petty, but it looks ugly enough and generic enough that we seriously questioned whether or not Harvest is a real company. (A random pop-up ad for a completely different lender didn’t reassure us.)

Don’t worry―it turns out that Harvest Small Business Finance is, in fact, a real lender. In fact, it’s one of the top 100 SBA 7(a) lenders in the country.3 But wow, does Harvest’s website make it look like a scam.

And aside from damaging its credibility, that means that you shouldn’t expect a seamless loan application process like you’d get from another lender. Because while other lenders let you get pre-approved and start loan applications online, Harvest gives you some PDFs you can print off and suggests you call for more details. You know, like we’re living in 2002.

Harvest’s phone number
Megaphone

Despite requiring you to call for more info, Harvest lists its phone number in just one place on its website―and not an obvious one. If you don’t want to do the scavenger hunt yourself, Harvest’s number is (949) 994-3610.

You may decide that none of that matters and you want to go with Harvest anyway. But in most cases, we think you’ll do better with a different SBA lender―and trust us, there are plenty out there.

The takeaway

Harvest Small Business Finance has the low interest rates, long loan terms, and other perks you’d find from any SBA lender. Plus, Harvest’s SBA-preferred status lets it make faster lending decisions than many other SBA lenders.

But Harvest earns truly terrible customer reviews, and its awful website suggests a less-than-streamlined loan application process for you.

So while Harvest is one of the highest-lending SBA lenders out there, we suggest finding a different lender―preferably one with better reviews and an easier application process.

Skeptical of Harvest? Learn more about one of our favorite places to get SBA loans―the SmartBiz SBA loan marketplace.

Related reading

Harvest FAQ

Is Harvest an SBA lender?

Yes, Harvest is an SBA lender that offers SBA 7(a) loans. In fact, Harvest is an SBA-preferred lender, which can speed up your SBA loan process.

Does Harvest still have PPP money?

No, Harvest does not still have PPP (Paycheck Protection Program) money―and neither do any other lenders. The program ended in 2021.

How long does Harvest Small Business Finance take to fund PPP loans?

Harvest no longer funds any PPP loans (nor do any other lenders). But most lenders took around two weeks to fund PPP loans.

Disclaimer

At Business.org, our research is meant to offer general product and service recommendations. We don't guarantee that our suggestions will work best for each individual or business, so consider your unique needs when choosing products and services.

Sources

  1. Bankrate, “Wall Street Journal Prime Rate.” Accessed April 6, 2022.
  2. Better Business Bureau, “Harvest Small Business Finance LLC.” Accessed April 6, 2022.
  3. U.S. Small Business Administration, “100 Most Active SBA 7(a) Lenders.” Accessed April 6, 2022.
Chloe Goodshore
Written by
Chloe Goodshore
Chloe covers business financing and loans for Business.org. She has worked with many small businesses over the past 10 years, from video game stores to law firms. Those years watching frustrated business owners try to sift through their many options gave her a passion for breaking down complex business topics. She wants to help business owners spend less time agonizing over their businesses so they can spend more time running them.
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