USDA Small Farmer Loan Info

(disclaimer: Creative Oasis is in no way affiliated with the USDA. We are simply providing access to information regarding farmer loans.)

USDA Farm Loan Programs

By providing access to credit, FSA’s Farm Loan Programs offer opportunities to family-sized farmers and ranchers to:

  • Start, improve, expand, transition, market, and strengthen family farming and ranching operations
  • Beginning farmers, racial and ethnic minority farmers and women producers
  • Value-added, direct sale, organic, and specialty crop operations
  • Young People actively involved in agricultural youth organizations needing financial assistance for income-producing, educational, agricultural projects
  • Urban farmers and roof-top producers
  • Operations using alternative farming methods such as hydroponics, aeroponics, vertical farming, and freight container farming

Maximum Loan Limitations

The maximum loan amount for a Direct Farm Operating Loan is $300,000.

Loan Limitations

There is no minimum loan amount. The maximum loan amount for either Microloan is $50,000. The $50,000 limit includes any possible outstanding FSA Direct Operating loan balances. A loan applicant can have a Guaranteed Operating loan, Farm Ownership loan or Emergency loan and still qualify for a Microloan.

Your Guide to FSA Farm Loans Cover PageYour Guide to FSA Farm Loans

This guidebook simplifies information on the types of farm loans available; how to apply for a guaranteed loan, direct loan, or land contract guarantee; What you can expect once you submit your application; and most importantly, your rights and responsibilities as an FSA customer.



Current Interest Rates
Program Interest Rates
Farm Operating- Direct 3.250%
Farm Operating – Microloan 3.250%
Farm Ownership – Direct 3.750%
Farm Ownership – Microloan 3.750%
Farm Ownership – Direct, Joint Financing 2.500%
Farm Ownership – Down Payment 1.500%
Emergency Loan – Amount of Actual Loss 3.750%
Effective as of March 1, 2018
Continue below to learn more about Available Farm LoansTargeted Loan Audiences, and Specialty Loans.

Available Farm Loans

Direct Operating Loans are used to purchase items such as livestock and feed; farm equipment; fuel, farm chemicals, insurance, and family living expenses; make minor improvements or repairs to buildings and fencing; and general farm operating expenses.

Microloans are operating loans designed to meet the needs of small and beginning farmers, non-traditional, specialty crop and niche type operations by easing some requirements and offering less paperwork.

Direct Farm Ownership Loans are used to purchase or enlarge a farm or ranch, construct a new or improve existing farm or ranch buildings, and for soil and water conservation and protection purposes.

Guaranteed Loans enables lenders to extend credit to family farm operators and owners who do not qualify for standard commercial loans. Farmers receive credit at reasonable terms to finance their current operations or to expand their business; financial institutions receive additional loan business and servicing fees, as well as other benefits from the program, such as protection from loss.

Targeted Loan Audiences

Youth Loans are used by young people participating in 4-H clubs, FFA , or a similar organization, to finance educational, income-producing, agriculture-related projects.

Minority and Women Farmers and Ranchers loans support the full participation of minority and women family farmers in FSA’s farm loan programs by targeting a portion of its direct and guaranteed farm ownership and operating loan funds for minority and women farmers to buy and operate a farm or ranch.

Beginning Farmers and Ranchers loans provide credit opportunities to eligible family farm and ranch operators and owners who have been in business less than 10 years.

Specialty Loans

Emergency Loans help farmers and ranchers recover from production and physical losses due to drought, flooding, other natural disasters or quarantine.


Native American Tribal Loans are a valuable resource to help Tribes within the reservation to acquire land interests within tribal reservation or Alaskan community; advance and increase current farming operations; provide financial prospects for Native American communities; increase agricultural productivity; and save cultural farmland for future generations.