Western Washington University's Small Business Development Center is closely monitoring the impacts to our local businesses caused by the COVID-19 outbreak. We will be updating this page with resources and information that can help our small business community get through these challenging times.
SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) with up to $10,000 Cash Advance Available Now
The SBA will provide direct, targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses and non-profits that have been severely impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. These loans will carry 3.75% fixed interest for up to 30 years as determined on a case-by-case basis.
Start an Application
To start and application please visit the Small Business Administration's loan application page.
When submitting this loan application on the last screen you will be presented with the option to be considered for a cash advance of up to $10,000. Be sure to check that box! The cash advance will be deposited in your bank account within 3-4 days and 100% of that advance will be forgiven whether you are approved for an EIDL loan or not.
Like any financing there will be an application process and you will be required to provide business and personal financial information for a complete loan application package. Following are some helpful PDF's on what to expect from the process and what documentation you will need to prepare.
NEW! Paycheck Protection Loan Program
This loan program is designed to assist businesses to keep their employees on the payroll. Small businesses and eligible nonprofit organizations, Veterans organizations, and Tribal businesses described in the Small Business Act, as well as individuals who are self-employed or are independent contractors, are eligible if they also meet program size standards.
These will be SBA backed loans, originated by SBA approved lending institutions. Applications will be available as of April 3rd, 2020.
You can read more details at the Treasury Department website where you can also download an application form to be submitted to your local lender.
Other SBA Loan Programs
The SBA provides a number of loan resources for small businesses to utilize when operating their business. For more information on loans or how to connect with a lender, visit the Small Business Adminstration (SBA) website.
How to get access to lending partners?
SBA has developed Lender Match, a free online referral tool that connects small businesses with participating SBA-approved lenders within 48 hours.
- 7(a) program offers loan amounts up to $5,000,000 and is an all-inclusive loan program deployed by lending partners for eligible small businesses within the U.S. States and its territories. The uses of proceeds include: working capital; expansion/renovation; new construction; purchase of land or buildings; purchase of equipment, fixtures; lease-hold improvements; refinancing debt for compelling reasons; seasonal line of credit; inventory; or starting a business.
- Express loan program provides loans up to $350,000 for no more than 7 years with an option to revolve. There is a turnaround time of 36 hours for approval or denial of a completed application. The uses of proceeds are the same as the standard 7(a) loan.
- Community Advantage loan pilot program allows mission-based lenders to assist small businesses in underserved markets with a maximum loan size of $250,000. The uses of proceeds are the same as the standard 7(a) loan.
- 504 loan program is designed to foster economic development and job creation and/or retention. The eligible use of proceeds is limited to the acquisition or eligible refinance of fixed assets.
- Microloan program involves making loans through nonprofit lending organizations to underserved markets. Authorized use of loan proceeds includes working capital, supplies, machinery & equipment, and fixtures (does not include real estate). The maximum loan amount is $50,000 with the average loan size of $14,000.
Other Local Lending Options
These local banks and credit unions are rolling out emergency funding options:
- Washington Federal (offering a 5-year business line of credit with no interest for 90 days)
- WECU Crisis Relief Loan (personal loans up to $5,000 with no payments for 90 days, 24 month term, 3.9%)
Alternative Lending Platforms
Following are some alternative sources of funding, inclusion in this list is not an endorsement or a recommendation:
- Prosper (Personal loans up to $40K)
- Lending Club (personal and business loans)
- OnDeck (Business loans up to $500K
- Kabbage (Up to $250,000 lines of credit)
- Square (if using Square Point-of-Sale)
- Amazon (for Amazon sellers)
Business Triage - Suggested Action Items
Asche Rider, one of our uber talented Certified Business Advisors, has put together a quick resource guide in response to the evolving COVID-19 situation. This guide will be updated as resources become available and conditions change. You can download this PDF guide (opens in new window).
Explore Tax Relief
Both Federal and State taxing authorities are developing programs to offer deferral of the payment of taxes which can help businesses retain cash to meet operating expenses.
- Washington State assistance programs are summarized on the Governor's Office website
- The Federal Government tax relief programs will be updated on the IRS website
What About Grants for Business?
Grants for for-profit businesses are usually hard to find. Following are some current options:
Verizon and LISC have partnered to roll out a $2.5 million recovery fund, more details can be found here: Verizon and LISC Come Together to Support Small Businesses with COVID-19 Recovery Fund
GoFundMe has created Small Business Relief Initiative, more details can be found on their Small Business Relief Initiative and Fund FAQs.
Facebook has created a Small Business Grants program, more details can be found at their Small Business Grants Program page.
Google has also created a Small Business Grant, largely based on free advertising credits the details of which can be found here: COVID-19 Ad credits for Google Ads Small and Medium-sized Businesses.
What Should I Do About My Employees?
Washington's Employment Security Department has programs to assist businesses and workers during this crisis. If you are affected by COVID-19, Employment Security has programs that may be able to help. They have adopted a series of emergency rules to relieve the burden of temporary layoffs, isolation and quarantine for workers and businesses. You can get more information at: https://esd.wa.gov/newsroom/covid-19
Labor is often the largest single expense item for businesses and if revenues have dropped due to forced closures and reductions in consumer spending then now is the time to look at workforce reduction options. ESD has summarized various labor situations for employers to consider from layoffs, to stand-by and shared-work status in their message on COVID-19 (PDF).
Overview of Employer Paid Leave Requirements and Tax Credit Provisions
The House recently passed Families First Coronavirus Response Act which is summarized with this chart
The IRS recently published information on the Employee Retention Credit.
What About Paid Family & Medical Leave?
This may be another source of financial relief for workers who are themselves sick, subject to quarantine or caring for family members. You can find out more at https://paidleave.wa.gov/coronavirus/.
Labor and Industries also has a great FAQ summary.
Small Business Guides
The Washington State SBDC has put together the following guide and planning documents that can be downloaded and customized for your company:
- Business Resiliency Guide Final (PDF)
- Business Resiliency Plan(BRP) (Word)
- Emergency Procedures (Word)
Additional Business Resources
- Washington Governor's Office - Financial Assistance & Employer Assistance Info
- Planning for Coronavirus Pandemic (PDF)
- Preparedness for Businesses & Non-profits (guidelines, checklists & video)