Benefits of Banking Local for Small Businesses in the Shenandoah Valley

Benefits of Banking Local for Small Businesses in the Shenandoah Valley

Small business owners encounter many challenges in running a local business—banking shouldn’t be one of them. If you’re looking for the best bank for small business, look no further than Main Street. Your local bank offers the same products and services as the bigger banks, but with more flexibility in making lending decisions and saving you money on interest and fees. As reported by a 2020 Community Banking Study from the FDIC:


“Community banks provide their local communities with valuable products and services, including offering various loan products to business owners and developers, small businesses, and farms … Community banks also continue to meet the credit needs of less economically vibrant areas, such as rural counties experiencing population outflows.”


So, whether you are a relatively new small business owner looking to build a banking relationship, or you’re not satisfied with your current lender and looking for better rates/terms, keep reading to learn all the benefits of banking locally for small businesses in the Shenandoah Valley.

Personalized Banking Experience

Choosing a local banking and lending partner for your small business allows you to have personalized service to support your needs and business goals.

One of the biggest decisions you can make is how to choose a bank for your business. When you choose a local bank like F&M for your business banking needs, you get more than a banker or lender. Instead, consider us the newest member of your team. We build relationships with our business clients to support your needs and growth throughout the life of your business.

So, what does a personalized banking experience look like?

  • Anticipating your individual needs
  • Customizing loans and other services to meet your needs
  • Providing information and advice to support your business goals
  • Making ourselves available when you have a question

With personalized service, you are never just another account number. It saves you time to work with a local bank that knows your community and your business’s place in it. By anticipating your individual needs, we can make recommendations before you even realize it’s time to take the next step. Take it from Barren Ridge Vineyards in Fishersville, Augusta County:

“We have found F&M Bank to be everything a local bank should be: a bank that heard our story and believed in and supported our vision.”

Plus, we care about the same things you do. From volunteering with local charities to cheering for our kids at local sporting events, don’t be surprised if you run into your local business banker outside of the bank!

Customized Financing with Competitive Rates

Many small businesses and farmers choose local financial institutions as their preferred lender for multiple reasons, including flexibility and knowledge of the local community.

When it comes to lending options for small business, local banks represent more than their share of the market:

“Community banks represent 15 percent of the industry’s total loans but 30 percent of its CRE loans, 36 percent of small business loans, and 70 percent of agricultural loans,” according to the same FDIC study. This shows that while local banks may have a relatively small footprint, they are the lender of choice for many small businesses and farmers. Let’s take a closer look at the reasons why:

  • Local banks often have more flexibility. With lending decisions made locally, there is more flexibility to lend to small businesses and customize financing.
  • Community banks offer lower fees and interest rates. In part because they are locally owned, local banks are able to help businesses save money on loan rates and fees for other business bank accounts and services. Every dollar saved makes a difference to a small business.
  • You don’t have to give up convenience. Local banks tend to offer the same perks and services as bigger banks such as online and mobile banking, remote check capture, credit card processing, and more.
  • We understand local needs and concerns. Community banks are part of the local economy, which thrives when local businesses are thriving. That’s why we are often able to approve small business loans that would likely be rejected by bigger banks.

As you can see, it pays to build a relationship with your local banker. When you need financing, we will make every effort to provide you with affordable loan terms and rates.

Community Focused, Just Like You!

When you choose a local bank for your business banking and lending needs, you are also reinvesting in the community.

If you’re still wondering, should I bank locally for my small business lending needs, keep in mind that the money you put into your local bank through deposits and interest paid on loans gets reinvested in your community through other loans and donations to nonprofits.


“F&M Bank is an exemplary model of what it means to be a community bank. Their support and involvement with local business and nonprofits is unparalleled, and we are proud to partner with them,” writes Kristi Williams, President & CEO United Way of Staunton, Augusta Co. & Waynesboro (SAW)

Local banks support the community in many ways, such as sponsoring local sports teams, financing construction in the community, and helping small businesses get on their feet and grow. So, when you choose a local bank for your business banking and lending needs, you are also reinvesting in the community. Larger banks often lack those social ties and interconnected relationships with the local economy and community.

Partner with F&M Bank for your business banking needs!

Are you looking for the best business lender in the Shenandoah Valley? For the past century, F&M Bank has helped local businesses like yours grow and thrive. Whether you’re expanding, remodeling, or making a business move, we tailor your loan to meet your needs. Our team walks you through the process and guides your experience with the personable attention your business deserves.

To get started, visit or call one of our convenient locations across Augusta, Rockingham, Shenandoah, and Frederick counties.