Small Business Administration

In an announcement Wednesday from Washington, D.C., the U.S. Small Business Administration revealed that fee relief on 7(a) loans of $150,000 or less implemented last year and originally slated to expire on Sept. 30, will be extended through fiscal year 2015.

SBA also announced that fee relief measures for SBA Veterans Advantage loans will be renewed as well as enhanced. Both the extension of the fee relief for 7(a) loans $150,000 and under, and the extension and enhancement of the fee relief for SBA Veterans Advantage loans became effective Oct. 1 and will remain in effect through Sept. 30, 2015.

“We zeroed out fees on loans of less than $150,000 to any 7(a) borrower because we don’t want SBA fees to be an impediment to getting capital out to communities where it can make a game-changing difference, especially to our underserved communities, who use these small dollar loans more frequently,” said SBA Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet. 

The most recent numbers available for FY14, as of Sept. 12, show that the SBA had guaranteed 28,806 7(a) $150,000-and-under loans (worth $1.74 billion), up from 23,337 loans (worth $1.34 billion) in FY 2013.

This represents a volume increase of 23.4 percent and a loan-value increase of 30 percent. Fee reductions on these loans resulted in almost $19 million in savings to small-business borrowers in FY 2013.

Under the original fee relief for 7(a) loans that began  Oct 1, 2013, both the upfront guaranty fee and the annual servicing fee (“on-going guaranty fee”) were reduced to zero on loans $150,000 and under.

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The provisions that began on Oct. 1, 2013, for 7(a) loans under $150,000, will now be continued for fiscal year 2015. The upfront guarantee fee will continue to depend on both the amount and the maturity of the loan.

For SBA Veterans Advantage loans, the conditions implemented on Jan. 1, 2014 — zero upfront guaranty fee on all SBA Express loans to veterans of $150,000 up to $350,000 — will remain unchanged.

Also beginning Oct. 1, the upfront guaranty fee for non-SBA Express loans $150,000 up to $5 million will now be reduced by 50 percent. There is no reduction on the annual servicing fee for loans over $150,000.

Seventy percent of all SBA loans made to veterans are $350,000 or less. Since its inception through Sept. 20, 2014, SBA had guaranteed 153 loans for $38,861,900 nationally under Veterans Advantage. Fee relief for these loans resulted in savings to borrowers of about $571,000.

For more, visit the SBA website at www.sba.gov, or contact your local SBA field office. You can find contact information for your local SBA office at www.sba.gov/localresources/index.html.