FGCAR will continue to offer information to assist members during this challenging time. Below is some guidance on obtaining financial assistance as brokerage companies and as independent contractor brokers. We will continue to add to this as soon as possible. We will research and support you as your professional association. If you find additional information you wish to share email me at the
FGCAR office at - [email protected] 
 
Coronavirus Relief Options  More Information Here
OBTAINING A LOAN AND FINDING LENDERS
Economic Injury Disaster Loan Emergency Advance For Independent/1099 Brokers
 BACK TO COVID 19 INFORMATION PAGE

4/9/20 - Unemployment Benefits Update

We continue to follow up with the Governor's Office and the Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) for updates regarding the ability for independent contractors to access federal unemployment benefits provided through the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program (FPUC). The latest information on this situation is that DEO is waiting for both funding and guidance from the federal government regarding FPUC before they can proceed with accepting and processing applications from independent contractors. We know this is a vital issue for Realtors and will report back with more information as soon as we have it.

In the meantime, Florida Realtors has compiled a comprehensive FAQ on this topic that I encourage you to check out if you have additional questions.
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4/9/20 - Financial Assistance/Loans Update

NAR continues to work closely with Congress to get clarification on many provisions in the CARES Act, including the emergency loans available for small businesses. Based on those conversations they have created a helpful FAQ that they continue to update as more information becomes available. The FAQ addresses frequent questions about who is eligible and how to apply for these brand new programs.

Included in the FAQ is new information about the SBA Paycheck Protection Program. Late last week, the SBA released its interim final rule for the program, which provides much-needed clarity on a point relevant to many real estate brokerages and Realtors: how should a business account for independent contractors? The final rule explicitly states that since independent contractors can apply for their own loans (beginning April 10), they should not be counted toward another business's employee headcount or its average monthly payroll costs.

As this is a brand new program which lenders have had little time to prepare for, many lenders are not yet accepting applications, despite it technically being available as of April 3 for small businesses and sole proprietors. Eligible borrowers should reach out to their lenders and continue to check on when they are accepting applications. The FAQ includes more information about this important program such as eligibility, how to apply, what borrowers need to provide to lenders, and other resources.

Lastly, here are some other helpful links regarding these emergency loans:
• SBA COVID-19 Resources for Small Businesses
• SBA 7(a) PPP Loan Application
• Treasury Guidance for Borrowers
• SBA Interim Final Rule
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4/9/20 - Mortgage and Personal Finance FAQs

In response to the COVID-19 crisis, bank regulators have adopted many new policies that members should be aware of. Refer to this NAR FAQ for those provisions and actions that are designed to address homebuying, homeowner/landlord, and personal finance issues.

4/1/20 - Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) and 7(a) Payroll Protection Plan

The CARES Act dramatically increased the role of the Small Business Administration (SBA) in efforts to assist U.S. businesses impacted by the COVID-19 crisis. The two main vehicles for these relief efforts are the SBA 7(b)(2) loans – Economic Injury Disaster Loans – and the SBA 7(a) loan program. Both loans are available to businesses with 500 or fewer employees that have been negatively impacted by the crisis.

4/1/20 - Emergency Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Grants (Section 1110)

  • Businesses with 500 employees or fewer, including sole proprietors, independent contractors, and cooperatives are eligible for Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) during the covered period of January 31st to December 31, 2020 in response to COVID-19.
  • The business must show hardship due to the Coronavirus.
  • The Economic Injury Disaster Loans are available for up to $2 million dollars for businesses.
  • During the covered period, SBA can determine loan eligibility based solely on the applicant’s credit score or use of an alternative appropriate method for determining an applicant’s ability to repay.
  • The SBA must waive any personal guarantee on loan advances or loans under $200,000.
  • Legislation provides $10 billion in funding to provide an emergency advance of up to
  • $10,000, which is forgivable debt, to small businesses within 3 days of the business applying for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL).

4/1/20 - Economic Injury Disaster Loans may be used for the following:

  • Paid sick leave to employees impacted by COVID-19
  • Payroll
  • Rent/Mortgage Payments
  • Debt obligations due to loss revenues
  • Increased costs for due to chain supply disruptions and materials.

SBA 7(a) Payroll Protection Program (Section. 1102 & 1106)
Businesses with 500 employees or fewer, including sole proprietors and independent contractors, are eligible for SBA 7(a) loans in response to COVID-19 covering expenses for the period of February 15, 2020 through June 30, 2020. The CARES Act appropriates $349 billion to cover these loans.
The loan amount will be 250% of the average salary expenditures/month for the year prior to the loan, up to $10 million. For businesses not open yet in that period, the SBA will look at earlier receipts from 2020.

7(a) loans can be used for:
o Payroll, including for independent contractors and employees who work on commission;
o Rent/Mortgage interest;
o Utilities.

All or a portion of these loans will be forgivable for businesses that maintain at least 75% of the average payroll levels as in the previous year; forgivable amounts phase out as employers payroll levels drop below that. The bill also increases the SBA “Express Loan” limit from $350 thousand to $1 million.

4/1/20 - Unemployment Benefits for Self-Employed
Self-employed individuals, independent contractors, and other individuals who are unable to work as a direct result of COVID-19 public health emergency, and would not qualify for regular unemployment benefits under state law may be eligible to receive “Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.”
This excludes individuals who have an ability to telework with pay or individuals who are receiving sick leave or other paid leave benefits.
The unemployment assistance is available to individuals who are unemployed, partially unemployed, or unable to work for the weeks impacted as a result of COVID-19 between Jan. 27- December 31, 2020.

These benefits will be administered by the states, in accordance with this new Federal law. There is a maximum of 39 weeks of assistance, where the amount is equal to what is authorized under the state unemployment compensation law, plus an additional $600 per week for up to four months.