MidwestFinance Brokers should view $2.2 trillion relief package as a client service opportunity March 31, 2020 Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share via email The $2.2 trillion relief package (CARES ACT) finalized last week is an opportunity for commercial real estate brokers and consultants to connect clients with banks and other lending sources participating in the program that earmarks $350 billion to assist small business. “This is a great opportunity for commercial real estate brokers and consultants who may have been sidelined during the coronavirus outbreak to be a valuable resource for their clients,” said Gabe Beukinga, the newly named president of Radius Bank’s guaranteed government loan division which will be facilitating the loan process for Radius. Among the key elements of the paycheck protection program that people should be aware of, according to Beukinga, are eligible businesses which include those with 500 employees or fewer. Some covered industries may have different thresholds based on Small Business Administration (SBA) guidelines. Not for profit entities may also eligible for the program. The maximum loan amount is the lesser of $10 million or 250 percent of the average total monthly payments for payroll and benefits costs. Eligible uses for the funds include: payroll costs, costs for health care benefits, employee salaries, commissions, mortgage payments, rent, utilities and interest on any other debt. The loan will be deferred for 6 to 12 months and is non-recourse. Any portion of the loan not forgiven will be up to a 10-year amortization at 4 percent. According to Beukinga, small businesses are the backbone of the American economy and are in desperate need of this payroll protection plan. “The small business portion of the relief effort has those companies in mind—businesses that may occupy 50 to 75,000 square feet of industrial space, or less than 10,000 square feet of office space,” he said. “This relief effort is a significant and necessary step in supporting the daily operational needs of small businesses in every community across the country that have been devastated by the impact of coronavirus.” Those involved in SBA lending programs are preparing for an onslaught of calls and questions about the relief program, because of the magnitude of impact the coronavirus has had on the economy overall. Beukinga said the most important thing for lenders is to be adequately prepared for unprecedented activity as small businesses look to put relief funds to work as quickly as possible. “Radius Bank has expanded our staffing in anticipation of this program and the important work that is to be done for businesses across the country,” Beukinga said. “We are poised and ready to help small businesses, and the men and women behind them, during this challenging time.” Radius Bank provides a full complement of accounts and services to meet the needs of consumers and businesses nationwide. The digital bank has assets of approximately $1.4 billion and its online banking platform helps to further expedite the loan process, a distinct advantage to help expedite activity under the relief program.