City of Chicago

Small Business Improvement

Fund (SBIF) Grant

Are you located in a City of Chicago TIF district and want to renovate your building?

The City of Chicago’s Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF) promotes economic development by providing small businesses with financial assistance for building-improvement costs. SomerCor is the program administrator contracted by the City’s Department of Planning and Development for the SBIF program.

SBIF grants use local Tax Increment Financing (TIF) revenue to reimburse you for the pre-approved repair or rehab of your business facilities or adjacent land acquisition. You must be located within a SBIF eligible TIF district.

The maximum grant assistance for an industrial property is $150K; for a single-tenant commercial property the maximum is $100K; and for multi-tenant commercial property, it is $50K.

Grant funds are provided after an approved project is complete and all expenses are paid.


REIMBURSABLE EXPENSES

  • Permanent exterior improvements and storefront renovation
  • Building systems improvements
  • Tuck-pointing and masonry repairs
  • Structural components of new signage
  • Interior remodeling including ADA-compliance improvements
  • Environmental remediation
  • Purchase of adjacent property for business expansion or parking

BENEFITS TO YOU

  • Receive reimbursement grants for up to 75% of your pre-approved project cost
  • Grants do not have to be repaid
  • Projects can be completed in up to three phases within 300 days
  • Grant approval can be used to secure conventional loan for your project
  • Funds can be used to repay a loan

REQUIREMENTS FOR ELIGIBLE BUSINESSES

• Valid city business license and current with property taxes
• Applicants must be clear of City indebtedness

TYPES OF BUSINESSES

Commercial tenants

Average gross sales under $5 million annually for the prior three (3) years

Owner-occupied

Maximum personal net worth of $6 million and maximum total liquidity of $500,000

Industrial 

Maximum of 100 full-time equivalent employees

Vacant property

Minimum of 60% leased and 100% ground floor leased

INELIGIBLE BUSINESSES

Taverns, massage parlors, national chains, franchises and places of worship.

Dream it, Do it.

Find everything you need to apply to the SBIF Program right here:

Links:

SBIF Program Eligibility

SBIF Lottery Results

SBIF Recipients

SBIF Lenders

Helpful Links

Am I in a SBIF District?


Get Started:

Are you in an Open District (in order to apply for SBIF funding your business must be located in an open SBIF/TIF district) and ready to apply for a SBIF Grant? Download and review the Program Guidelines and fill out a SBIF Application and send the application to sbif@somercor.com!

SBIF Open Districts

SBIF Application

SBIF Program Rules


LEARN MORE

Still have questions? For additional information on the SBIF program, review the documents below. Then fill out a Start Here form, and SomerCor will take it from there!

SBIF Contractors

SBIF Design Guidelines

SBIF FAQs

SBIF Flyer

Questions? Reach out to us!

Jacob Stern

SVP, Dir. Economic Dev.
(312) 360-3328
jstern@somercor.com

Anastasia Williams

Vice President
(312) 360-3336
awilliams@somercor.com

Silvia Orozco

Assoc. SBIF Dir.
(312) 360-3334
sorozco@somercor.com

Reuben Waddy

Economic Dev. Associate
(312) 360-3319
rwaddy@somercor.com

Savannah Allen

Economic Dev. Coordinator
(312) 360-3327
sallen@somercor.com