Thursday, September 23, 2010

Many More Small Businesses Now Eligible for Long-Term Financing With SBA 504 Loans

/PRNewswire/ -- A number of very substantial benefits for America's small businesses were incorporated into the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act of 2010, recently passed in Congress. Included in the legislation were major enhancements to the SBA 504 loan program, an important U.S. Small Business Administration financing program. SBA 504 loans are long-term, government-guaranteed loans designed for small businesses to finance the purchase, construction or renovation of commercial real estate and the purchase of long-term capital assets.

As a result of the legislation, many more small business owners across the country now qualify to receive SBA 504 loans. The net worth for companies to be eligible for an SBA 504 loan was increased, maximum loan size was raised and refinancing of existing debt was also approved.

Among the most important benefits included in the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act of 2010 is an extension of the fee relief for SBA 504 loans. This fee waiver was first enacted in February 2009 as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Recovery Act. An additional $505 million has been allocated to fund SBA loan fees through December 31, 2010 saving borrowers many thousands of dollars.

Maximum loan amounts were also permanently increased to a range of $5 to $5.5 million from a previous maximum range of $1.5 to $4 million. Larger projects are now eligible for 504 loans and borrowers who already have loans with the SBA can now return for additional funding.

There was also an increase in the business size standard to be eligible for an SBA 504 loan. Businesses with a tangible net worth of $15 million and 2-year average net income after Federal income tax of $5 million, are now be eligible to apply for SBA 504 financing opening the door to many more small business owners across the country.

Perhaps one of the most beneficial enhancements to the SBA 504 loan program is a temporary two-year program for refinancing existing small business commercial debt. Small business owners holding commercial real-estate loans with undesirable rates will have the opportunity to refinance these loans using the SBA 504 loan program. This will be a boon for small businesses that are having difficulty keeping current on existing high-interest loans since SBA 504 loans are currently available at extremely attractive interest rates. Businesses will be able to remain in their facilities while lenders are not left holding vacant real estate.

SBA 504 loans are typically used by small businesses needing more operating space or by businesses that have lost their leases and decide to invest in their own facilities. Still others want to construct or retrofit facilities to incorporate energy efficient technologies to decrease operating expenses. Businesses needing to invest in capital-intensive equipment and machinery also look to the SBA 504 loan for funding. Small business owners definitely see the advantage of the low down payment which is typically only 10%. The hidden value to our economy is that all SBA 504 loan recipients are also adding jobs in their communities.

Certified Development Companies, or CDCs, are the SBA's conduit for providing 504 loans on Main Street. They are ready and waiting for the anticipated increase in demand this new legislation will generate. CDCs know that many small business borrowers will want to take advantage of these long-term, fixed, low interest rate loans now. Chris Crawford, President of NADCO, the trade association for the nation's CDCs pointed out, "The bottom line is that more small businesses now have an opportunity to invest in their own facilities or expand existing facilities using SBA 504 financing. At a time when the commercial real estate market is depressed and property is more affordable, this is great news for many small business owners."

Since 1986 the Certified Development Company industry has provided nearly $60 billion worth of financing to over 123,700 American small businesses resulting in the creation or retention of over 2.2 million jobs. Contact a Certified Development Company to discuss the program or visit the NADCO website at for additional information.

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