By Alan Wolf, YSN
Despite a two-month deadline extension, to May 31, time is nonetheless running out for members who wish to apply for a forgivable loan under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
That’s because most of the money appropriated for the small business rescue program is already gone.
According to published reports, only about $66 billion of the $292 billion in second-round funding remained as of April 5. And the Small Business Administration (SBA), which manages the program, is warning that the well will likely run dry by mid-month.
Experts’ best advice: apply as soon as possible.
“Businesses don’t know that they have to hurry up, but they better,” said Erik Asgeirsson, president/CEO of CPA.com, a unit of the American Institute of CPAs. Speaking to CNBC, Asgeirsson also warned that lenders may begin to close off their platforms as PPP funds are exhausted.
Compounding the problem are longer loan processing times due to new SBA safeguards against fraud, and confusion among lenders and applicants following program changes by the Biden administration, which were designed to give smaller businesses a leg up on funding and raise loan amounts for sole proprietors.
“This is unfair for the smallest businesses to be shut out in the final hours,” Asgeirsson said in a statement to Politico, in which he called for additional PPP funding. “A lot of false hopes were raised.”
It is unclear whether Congress or the White House are inclined to allocate more money to the program, especially as the vaccine rollout brings the nation closer to COVID closure. In the meantime, Lendio CEO Brock Blake, writing for Forbes, urges all last-minute loan seekers to make sure their forms are 100-percent complete and that all required documentation is included in order to keep their applications from getting stuck in limbo.
For more information, visit the SBA’s PPP page here.