According to the annual Texas Small Business Needs Assessment Poll, access to capital is the top challenge facing small businesses. However, bankers and business owners in Amarillo believe these findings to be misleading.
In the panhandle, there are a handful of community banks willing to loan to small businesses. The most common reason an entrepreneur would be denied a loan is because they do not have a proper business plan.
"When people come to me I want them to be able to know their business, know its cash flows and in particular have a good financial record," said Amy Henderson the Vice President of Commercial Loans with Amarillo National Bank.
Henderson recommends visiting the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) before going to the bank for a loan. The SBDC can help organize and create a plan for people looking to open a business.
Deana Zaccardo co-owns Belmare Bakery with her husband. She went through the SBDC and did not have an issue getting approved for a loan. She did, however, have issues finding the right employees who fit the needs of her specific field.
"We have a different generation now, and finding qualified people that want to decorate and make cakes requires extra attention to fill that spot," said Zaccardo.
The Texas Small Business Needs Assessment Poll ranked finding qualified employees as the second toughest challenge up and coming businesses face.