How to Qualify for the SBA Paycheck Protection Program

 

Small Business Qualifying for the SBA Paycheck Protection Program “PPP” is easier when you’re prepared. Knowing whether you meet its criteria before you apply will save you time and frustration. PPP–Fact-Sheet Your personal credit score ranges from 300 to 850 (the higher, the better), and evaluates your ability to repay your personal debts, such as credit cards, car loans and a mortgage. You can get a free credit score on NAV  

Build your business credit and solve credit problems

  The FICO score, commonly used in lending decisions, is based on five factors: your payment history (35% of your score), the amounts owed on credit cards and other debt (30%), how long you’ve had credit (15%), types of credit in use (10%) and recent credit inquiries (10%). Small-business lenders require a personal credit score for loan applications because they want to see how you manage debt.

Paying your bills on time is crucial to building your score. But even if you pay your bills like clockwork, credit report errors could be damaging your score. One in 4 consumers identified damaging credit report errors, according to a 2012 study by the Federal Trade Commission. However, 4 out of 5 consumers who filed a dispute got their credit report modified, the study found. A follow-up study by the FTC found that 20% of those consumers saw a jump in their credit score after resolving errors.

You can get a copy of your credit reports for free once a year at AnnualCreditReport.com and dispute any inaccuracies you find through each of the credit bureaus’ websites (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion). Businesses that are more established and want to apply for bank loans can check out their business credit scores (which generally range from 0 to 100) at three business credit bureaus: Experian, Equifax and Dun & Bradstreet. Check out these five steps to building business credit, and if you see any mistakes on your reports, contact the bureaus.

More than likely, you’ll need an excellent business credit score as well as good personal credit to qualify for an SBA loan or traditional loan from a bank; this will depend on the individual lender and business factors such as your revenue, cash flow and time in business.

In general, online lenders look at personal credit scores but can be a bit more lenient when it comes to credit score requirements, as they place more emphasis on your business’s cash flow and track record.

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Paycheck Protection Program Interim Final Rule- Additional Eligibility Criteria and Requirements for Certain Pledges of Loans

An SBA loan that helps businesses keep their workforce employed during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.

SBA will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities.

PPP–Fact-Sheet

You can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating. Other regulated lenders will be available to make these loans once they are approved and enrolled in the program. You should consult with your local lender as to whether it is participating in the program.

Lenders may begin processing loan applications as soon as April 3, 2020. The Paycheck Protection Program will be available through June 30, 2020.

Frequently Asked Questions for Lenders and Borrowers

Who Can Apply

The following entities affected by Coronavirus (COVID-19) may be eligible:

  • Any small business concern that meets SBA’s size standards (either the industry based sized standard or the alternative size standard)
  • Any business, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, 501(c)(19) veterans organization, or Tribal business concern (sec. 31(b)(2)(C) of the Small Business Act) with the greater of:
    • 500 employees, or
    • That meets the SBA industry size standard if more than 500
  • Any business with a NAICS Code that begins with 72 (Accommodations and Food Services) that has more than one physical location and employs less than 500 per location
  • Sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed persons

Loan Details and Forgiveness

The loan will be fully forgiven if the funds are used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities (due to likely high subscription, at least 75% of the forgiven amount must have been used for payroll). Loan payments will also be deferred for six months. No collateral or personal guarantees are required. Neither the government nor lenders will charge small businesses any fees.

Forgiveness is based on the employer maintaining or quickly rehiring employees and maintaining salary levels.  Forgiveness will be reduced if full-time headcount declines, or if salaries and wages decrease.

This loan has a maturity of 2 years and an interest rate of 1%.

If you wish to begin preparing your application, you can download a copy of the PPP borrower application form to see the information that will be requested from you when you apply with a lender.