March 17, 2020

Disaster Loans Available Now for Small Businesses Impacted by COVID-19

By: Andrew Lenderman   Comments: 0

Small businesses hurt by the COVID-19 pandemic are encouraged to apply for federal disaster loans as soon as possible.

Today, these loans managed by the U.S. Small Business Administration are one of the best options for small employers struggling to stay open. Private nonprofits are also eligible. Click here to apply.

The program offers up to $2 million at 3.75% interest for businesses. Nonprofits pay 2.75%. Payment schedules are flexible. They take two to three weeks to process once the application is completed, says Melanie Norton, spokeswoman for the Region X SBA office. After the loan is approved, it usually takes another five days to disperse the funds, she says.

"We are trying to shorten those times as much as possible," Norton says.

But the best thing to do now is apply, Norton says. Businesses will need to supply tax returns, a profit and loss statement, the application and other documents. Learn more about the process here.

SBA Pacific Northwest Administrator Jeremy Field emphasized a variety of resources to help small businesses.

“Washington has been greatly impacted by the Coronavirus and that impact is being felt immensely by local small businesses," Field said in a statement. "The SBA continues to assist small businesses with accessing federal resources. This includes financing – working capital, microloans, express loans and lines of credit – and counseling services through the SBA Resource Partner Network to help businesses navigate preparedness plans."

Norton also emphasized the support network offered by the agency.

"You don't have to be in it alone," Norton said.

To contact the SBA's customer service team, please call 206.553.7310.

The economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to play out across America. AWB is closely monitoring federal, state and local government funding opportunities and will publicize them as soon as new information is confirmed.

In Seattle, city officials are offering federal Community Development Block Grants up to $10,000 for qualifying small businesses located within the city. Click here to learn more.

And Amazon has made grants available to small businesses located near its Seattle headquarters. Click here to learn more.

"This is not the first economic hurdle entrepreneurs have had to scale and it won’t be the last," Field says. "Our team will be there to support local businesses through every step of the process.”

For questions or more information, please contact AWB's Andrew Lenderman at 360.943.1600 or AndyL@awb.org.

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