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How a Loan Repayment Can Help You Start Your Veterinary Practice
Let’s face the facts – we all know that veterinary school can get quite expensive, especially if you didn’t have the opportunity to earn a scholarship. Student debt can rack up, and starting your own business can seem like an unreachable dream.
But, there is a way out. Certain loan repayment programs can help you get back on your feet; of course, under certain requirements. There is a wide variety of loan repayment programs for small businesses, and quite a number of them are focused exclusively on veterinarians across the US. Here, we’ll break down the different options.
General Loan Repayment Programs
Picture this: you’re a young veterinarian fresh out of college. Your student debt is concerning, and you’re considering whether or not opening a veterinary practice will push you further into debt. Or maybe you’re considering working in an already-established vet practice.
The good news: there are several loan repayment options that can help you manage your student loan debt while building your business.
- Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans. The SBA offers several loan programs that can help veterinarians start or expand their veterinary practice, including the SBA 7(a) Loan Program and the SBA Microloan Program (smaller-size loans of up to $50,000). With these loans, you can purchase veterinary equipment, get a lease on real estate, or even get furniture.
- USDA Rural Development Loans. The USDA offers several loan programs that can help veterinarians start or expand their own veterinary practice in rural areas, including the Business and Industry Loan Guarantee Program.
- State and local loan programs. Some states and local governments offer loan programs specifically designed to help small businesses, including veterinary practices. These programs may provide low-interest loans or other forms of financial assistance to help veterinarians start or expand their practice.
If you are interested in any of these loans, we strongly advise you to check up-to-date information with relevant government bodies that are issuing these loans. Eligibility criteria vary, including the award amounts.
Starting a vet practice can be a challenging process, so seeking professional guidance is a necessary step. Once you are ready to start looking for that perfect practice, PS Broker’s licensed team of specialists can assist you during every step of the buying process.
Veterinary-Specific Loan Repayment Programs
In addition to general small business loans, there are others geared toward veterinarians/health professionals. We selected a few that may be of interest to you:
- Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program (VMLRP). This program provides loan repayment assistance to veterinarians who agree to work in designated shortage areas for at least three years. The maximum award amount is $75,000 per year.
- National Institutes of Health (NIH) Loan Repayment Program. Veterinarians participating in clinical research for human diseases or conditions are now eligible for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Extramural Loan Repayment Program for Clinical Research (LRP-CR). Extramural LRPs provide for the repayment of educational loan debt up to $50,000.
- Health Professions Loan Repayment Program (HPLRP). HPLRP provides up to $20,000 annually with a lifetime maximum of $60,000 for repayment of qualified education loans for veterinarians for each year of satisfactory service in an Army Reserve Troop Program Unit (TPU), AMEDD Professional Medical Command (APMC) or in the Individual Mobilization Augmentee (IMA) Program.
- Air Force Health Professions Loan Repayment Program. This program offers loan repayment assistance to veterinarians who serve in the Air Force for at least two years. The maximum award amount is $40,000 per year.
Are you thinking about starting your vet practice?
You’re in the right place.
The PS Broker team of advisors, certified valuation analysts, licensed real estate brokers, consultants, exit strategists, and tax/exchange specialists is here to give you advice and guidance.
PS Broker also has long-standing relationships with lenders who understand the true value of veterinary practices. They are ready to provide financing along with a range of options specific to the veterinary industry.
Buying a veterinary practice? Read more:
- 10 Marketing Ideas for Your Veterinary Practice
- 5 Tips to Remember When Buying Vet Practice
- Hiring Veterinary Technicians: How to Hire the Right Candidate
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