Loans for small businesses affected by the coronavirus

Where to find free or low-interest funding to keep you afloat.

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We’ll continue updating this page with resources and information as new details emerge in the world’s response to COVID-19.

With canceled events, few customers and supply chain disruptions, small businesses across the country are taking a hit during the coronavirus outbreak. You might be able to find low- or no-cost financing to cover operating expenses from the government and some private lenders. You also might be able to qualify for a cash grant.

Where to find a loan during the coronavirus outbreak

Some lenders as well as the federal local and state governments have rallied to offer either low- or no-interest loans to small businesses affected by the coronavirus. These are the main types of loans available to businesses affected by the coronavirus.

WATCH: How your business can survive the coronavirus

SBA Paycheck Protection Loans

The SBA is offering up to $10 million to small businesses affected by the coronavirus to cover overhead costs and retain employees. Here’s how the Paycheck Protection Loan breaks down:

  • Maximum loan amount: $10 million for 7(a) loans, $1 million for Express loans — based on payroll expenses
  • Maximum interest rate: 0.5%
  • Term: 2 years, with payments deferred for 6 months

Unlike other 7(a) and Express loans, you’re not required to pay any fees or provide collateral or a personal guarantee. You also don’t have to prove that you struggled to find funding elsewhere.

If your business keeps on employees at the same salary, it could have up to 100% of the loan balance forgiven in July 2020.

This new program was launched as part of the March 2020 stimulus package, along with other programs for small businesses.

How the SBA Paycheck Protection Loan works

SBA disaster loans

The Small Business Administration (SBA) now offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) to a wide range of businesses affected by the coronavirus, now including nonprofits and sole proprietorships. It’s only available in eligible in states where the governor has declared an economic disaster — you can check the SBA website to find out if your area is eligible.

Your business can apply for up to $2 million with interest rates capped at 3.75% for small businesses and 2.75% for nonprofits. If you need funding now, you can apply for a $10,000 grant to cover payroll while your application is being processed. Terms run up to 30 years, depending on your ability to repay, and you have the option to defer repayments for one year. You can apply through the SBA Disaster Assistance website.

How SBA disaster loans work

SBA Express Bridge Loans

If you need more than $10,000 to cover expenses now, you can apply for a disaster bridge loan in addition to your disaster loan. This program offers up to $25,000 in funding with less paperwork and a quicker turnaround time, though it depends on the lender.

Lenders can charge up to 6.5% over the prime rate, or 9.75% as of March 31, 2020. The maximum term is seven years, but once you receive your disaster loan funds, you can use it to pay off all or part of your bridge loan.

These loans are available through lenders that offer SBA Express loans.

Discounted business loans

Some lenders have started offering discounted loans to help small businesses combat the coronavirus. Business loans specifically to help those impacted by the coronavirus outbreak are still rare. But more may be coming soon, especially in areas where the government subsidizes or backs these loans, like Washington State.

LenderLoanAmountCostHow it works
FundRocketStimulus 2020$1,0000% APR
  • No credit or collateral requirements
  • Apply by setting up an account on Womply and reaching out to say you’re interested in the loan
  • Pay it back with weekly installments of either 10% of sales or $100 — whichever is lower
  • No repayments are required if there are no sales
U.S. BankQuick Loan$5,000 to $250,000APR 2% lower than what your business would have otherwise qualified for
  • Discounted rates on this unsecured term loan, with the same requirements and terms of a U.S. Bank Quick Loan
  • Apply online, through U.S. Bank’s mobile app, over the phone or at a branch
U.S. BankCash Flow Manager$10,000 to $250,000APR 1% lower than what your business would have otherwise qualified for
  • Discounted rates on its business line of credit, with no changes to requirements
WaFd BankSmall Business LifelineUp to $200,0000% APR for first 90 days
  • No interest for the first 90 days on these credit lines for businesses that have seen a 10% drop in revenue
  • Revolving credit line with terms up to five years
  • Expedited application for loans $30,000 and under
  • Available in AZ, ID, OR, NM, NV, UT, WA and Dallas or Austin TX
WefunderCoronavirus Crisis Loan$20,000 to $1 millionStarting at 3% APR
  • Crowdfund your loan from friends, family and Wefunder’s network of investors
  • Wefunder charges a 4% platform fee for successful campaigns, taken out of the loan
  • Defer repayments until 2021, then repay the loan with 2% to 20% of your sales
  • Equity option if you don’t want to repay the loan.

9 ways to increase cash flow during the coronavirus outbreak

Compare more small business loans

The online lenders below do not offer SBA disaster loans. Those are currently only available through the government. However, if you need money ASAP one of these providers could be a good option.

Updated April 2nd, 2020
Name Product Filter Values Loan amount Starting APR Requirements
Lendio
$500 – $5,000,000
6%
Operate a business in the US or Canada, have a business bank account and have a personal credit score of 675+.
Submit one simple application to potentially get offers from a network of over 75 legit business lenders.
OnDeck
$5,000 – $500,000
9.99%
600+ personal credit score, 1+ years in business, $100,000+ annual revenue
A leading online business lender offering flexible financing at competitive fixed rates.
Kabbage Small Business Line of Credit
$500 – $250,000
Varies
1+ years in business, $100,000+ annual revenue or $4,200+ monthly revenue over last 3 months
A simple, convenient online application could securely get the funds you need to grow your business.
SmartBiz
$30,000 – $5,000,000
4.75%
650+ personal credit score, US citizen or permanent resident, 2+ years in business, $50,000+ annual revenue, no outstanding tax liens, no bankruptcies or foreclosures in past 3 years
Get funding for your small business with a government-backed loan and extended repayment terms.
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Compare up to 4 providers

Local government loans

These cities have started to offer loans for small businesses that have been hurt by the coronavirus as of March 24, 2020. This list is growing fast — check with your local officials if you don’t see your city listed here.

Chicago, IL

Chicago started a $100 million Chicago Small Business Resiliency Fund in response to the coronavirus. You can apply for up to $50,000 based on your business’s revenue with loan terms as long as five years.

They’re available through Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) that partner with the city, and interest rates vary depending on the lender. At least half of the funds must go toward retaining at least 50% of your workforce before the outbreak.

How do I apply?

You can get connected with a CDFI by filling out a City of Chicago survey with basics about your business. You’ll need to provide the following documents during the application:

  • Bank statements for October 2019 to March 2020
  • Most recent tax return
  • Government-issued photo ID — CityKey accepted
Who qualifies?

Your business must meet the following criteria to get this loan:

  • Over 25% decrease in revenue since the COVID-19 outbreak
  • Under 50 employees
  • Less than $3 million in 2019 gross revenue
  • Have an address in Chicago or Chicago business license
  • No tax liens or legal judgements

Los Angeles, CA

Los Angeles launched the City of LA Small Business Emergency Microloan Program to help small businesses deal with the COVID-19 outbreak. Businesses can borrow between $5,000 and $20,000. There are two types of loans.

First is for microenterprises that are either low-income or provide low-income jobs. These come with 0% interest with terms from six months to one year. The second is for small businesses that offer low-income jobs. These come with rates from 3% to 5% interest with terms up to five years.

How do I apply?

You can apply online through the City of LA’s website. You’ll need to submit the following documents along with your application:

  • Most recent business tax returns, if available
  • Most recent personal tax returns
  • Interim financial statement
  • Personal financial statement
  • Three months of bank statements

It also requires a personal guarantee from all owners with a 20% stake in the company or higher.

Who qualifies?

Small businesses and microbusiness can qualify if they meet the following requirements:

  • Located in the City of Los Angeles
  • Los Angeles Business Tax Registration Certificate filed before March 1, 2020
  • Explanation for any derogatory marks on credit report
  • No debt write-offs in past 12 months
  • Loan must help business retain jobs

If you or another owner has bad credit, you can bring on a cosigner to up your chances of approval.

New York, NY

New York City is offering businesses affected by the COVID-19 outbreak interest-free loans up to $75,000. These loans come with a repayment term of 15 to 20 years. It’s also offering grants to help employers avoid laying off workers.

How do I apply?

You can apply for the loan by filling out a questionnaire on the New York City Small Business Services website. Someone from the Small Business Services Department will reach out to you with your options.

Who qualifies?

You must meet these requirements for funding in New York City:

  • Business located in New York City
  • No more than 100 employees
  • Can prove at least 25% loss due to the coronavirus outbreak
  • No tax liens or legal judgements

Financial assistance for New York businesses affected by the coronavirus outbreak

Sacramento, CA

The City of Sacramento has temporarily paused its Small Business Economic Relief Loan program, due to a high volume of applications. But you can sign up to get notified when the program is available again on the Sacramento City website. You can get more information about relief available to your business by calling (916) 808-7196.

If you currently have an application, you should receive a response by April 16.

South County, CA

South County Economic Development Council (South County EDC) is offering $5,000 interest-free business loans to restaurants that are staying open during the outbreak. There are no repayments until April 1, 2021, when the full loan balance will be due. The South County EDC will only offer around 50 of these loans so apply as soon as you can.

How do I apply?

You can download an application on the South County website. Once completed, email it along with copies of the following documents to SCEDC@SouthCountyEDC.com.

  • Proof of San Diego residency, such as driver’s license
  • W-9 IRS form
  • Copy of current business license
  • Document showing the owner has authority to sign a promissory note
Who qualifies?

Restaurants must meet the following criteria to qualify:

  • Located in an eligible ZIP code
  • Open for take out or delivery and operating according to San Diego County guidelines
  • Not part of a franchise or chain
  • Owners can’t have a financial interest in more than three San Diego County restaurants
  • Owners must live in San Diego County

State government loans

These states are offering programs specifically to combat the coronavirus as of March 23, 2020. This list is changing rapidly — check with your state if you don’t see your state listed here. Terms run as long as five years, and

Arkansas

Arkansas’s Department of Commerce (AEDC) launched a Quick Action Loan program, which offers direct loans and government-backed funding to businesses that pledge to keep on employees. You can borrow up to $250,000 as a direct loan with a two-year term and the option to defer payments for up to six months.

Or, Arkansas guarantees 80% of loans through a participating lender, up to $250,000. These come with a term of up to give years with up to 90 days of deferment.

How do I apply?

Contact the AEDC to learn how to apply or find a participating lender by calling 800-275-26727.

Who qualifies?

Both programs have slightly different requirements. You must meet the following requirements to be eligible for a direct loan:

  • Can prove revenue loss due to coronavirus outbreak
  • Has no other financing options, including SBA disaster loans
  • Meets other AEDC underwriting requirements
  • Pledges to retain employees

For the guaranteed loan, you have to meet the lender’s underwriting criteria and show that your business has been negatively affected by the coronavirus outbreak.

California

The California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (IBank) is guaranteeing 85% to 90% of loans through its Disaster Relief Loan Guarantee Program. You can apply for up to $20 million with rates and terms that vary depending on the lender. The guarantees max out at $1 million and covers up to seven years of the loan’s term.

Entrepreneurs can also apply for a Jump Start Loan, which offers loans between $500 and $10,000 with a five-year term, directly through IBank.

How do I apply?

You can submit an application to one of the participating financial development corporations listed on the IBank website.

Who qualifies?

Requirements vary depending on the lender. However, you must either have a small business with no more than 750 employees or run a nonprofit.

Connecticut

Delaware launched a Hospitality Emergency Loan Program (HELP) to offer no-interest loans of up to $10,000 per month needed. Loans come with a 10-year term, with the option to defer payments of up to nine months. You can use this loan for rent, utilities and other bills — but not payroll.

How do I apply?

You can apply by downloading an application on the Delaware government website. Send your completed application to business_finance@delaware.gov along with the following documents:

  • Billing statements for essential expenses that the loan will cover
  • Proof of payment over past 12 months for essential expenses
  • 2019 financial statements
  • Copy of Delaware business license
Who qualifies?

Your business must meet the following requirements to qualify for a loan:

  • Eligible hospitality, personal care, entertainment, tourism or service industry
  • At least one year in businesses
  • Paid at least 80% of essential expenses on time over past year
  • Not past due on most current bill
  • Annual revenue of $2.5 million or less

Florida

The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan program offers small businesses 0% APR loans of up to $50,000 for one year if your business is affected by the coronavirus. It’s meant to be a short-term solution while you wait for federal disaster funding or other long-term funding to come in. If it takes more than a year to pay it back, the interest rate jumps up to 12%.

How do I apply?

You can apply by downloading an application on the Florida Disaster Loan website and sending it in with all required documents to one of the following addresses:

  • Email: Disaster@FloridaSBDC.org
  • Fax: 850-696-2693
  • Mail: Florida SBDC Network Headquarters, C/O Florida Emergency Bridge Loan Process, 220 West Garden Street, Suite 301 Pensacola, FL 32502

Contact your local Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for help with the application. You can find your local SBDC on the Florida SBDC website or by calling 866-737-7232.

Who qualifies?

Your business must meet the following requirements to get a Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan:

  • For-profit small business located in Florida
  • Established before March 9, 2020
  • Have two to 100 employees
  • Located in designated disaster area

Maryland

Maryland is offering COVID-19 Emergency Relief Loans to cover three months of operating expenses, up to $50,000. The loan is interest-free for the first year, and comes with a 2% rate for the remaining three years. Businesses can also defer payments during the interest-free period.

How do I apply?

You can apply by filling out an application on the Maryland Department of Commerce website. Generally it takes between one and two hours to complete. You need to provide the following documents along with your application

  • Past two years of financial statements
  • Most recent interim financial statement
  • Estimate of lost revenue for next six months
Who qualifies?

You must meet the following requirements to qualify for this loan:

  • For-profit business
  • Fewer than 50 employees
  • 575 personal credit score
  • Established before March 9, 2020

Massachusetts

Massachusetts has set aside $10 million for the Small Business Recovery Loan Fund to support businesses affected by COVID-19. This offers loans up to $75,000 at 3% interest with no payments due for the first six months. After six months are up, your business has 30 more months to pay off the loan.

It requires a personal guarantee from all business owners with a 20% stake in the company or more — and a lien on your business assets.

How do I apply?

You can apply for the Small Business Recovery Loan Fund by downloading an application on the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation website — that’s the company administering the loan.

Fill out the application and email it along with your 2018 personal and business tax returns, 2019 financial statements and year-to-date 2020 financial statements to mgcc@massgcc.com. Use the subject line “2020 Small Business Recovery Loan Fund.”

Who qualifies?

You and your business must meet the following requirements for this loan:

  • Massachusetts-based business or nonprofit
  • Under 50 full- or part-time employees
  • Personal credit score of 575 or higher — though there are exceptions
  • No adult entertainment, cannabis, real estate investment, multilevel marketing or firearms businesses
  • No personal or business tax liens, past-due tax liabilities or past bankruptcies
  • For-profit businesses must be profitable as of March 10, 2020
  • No payments more than 60 days past due in the past six months on your personal credit report

Michigan

Michigan launched a $20 million Michigan Small Business Relief Program to combat the coronavirus’s economic impact. Loans run from $50,000 to $200,000 will be available starting around April 1, 2020. All loans come with a 0.25% interest rate and come with interest-only payments for five years and full loan repayments for the next five years.

How do I apply?

These loans will be available through SBA lenders, CDFIs and directly through the state. Currently there are no more details on the application process, which are be forthcoming on the Michigan Economic Development Corporation website.

Who qualifies?

Businesses need to meet the following criteria at a minimum to qualify for this loan:

  • Had operations limited by Executive Order (EO) 2020-9, or can show its revenue has been affected by the outbreak
  • Demonstrated economic loss due to EO 2020-9
  • Fewer than 100 employees
  • Need working capital to cover operating expenses
  • Proof you can’t qualify for credit elsewhere

Minnesota

Minnesota’s Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) is offering interest-free small business emergency loans. You can borrow between $2,500 and $35,000, based on the economic impact of the virus and financial need. Terms run up to five years, and you can defer repayments for six months.

You might be able to qualify for up to 50% forgiveness on this loan.

How do I apply?

These loans are available through private lenders. You can find a participating lender in your area on the DEED website. Reach out to find out what you need to do to submit your application.

Who qualifies?

Your small business must meet the following requirements to qualify for this loan:

  • Adversely affected by an executive order responding to the coronavirus outbreak
  • Current on bills as of March 1, 2020
  • Unable to qualify for a bank, credit union or nonprofit loan
  • Operating in Minnesota
  • Doesn’t receive passive income from investments in other businesses
  • Not in the gambling or adult entertainment industry

If your business is able to qualify for funding elsewhere in the future, you’re required to pay off the emergency loan. Business owners must back at least 20% of the loan with collateral or a personal guarantee.

New Jersey

The New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) Microloan program isn’t specifically for businesses impacted by COVID-19, but the state recommends applying if you’ve been affected. Business owners can borrow up to $50,000 at a 2% interest rate with a 10-year term.

You can hold off on payments for the first three years, though the interest that adds up during that time gets added to your loan balance when repayments start — making your loan more expensive. It also comes with a $300 application fee, 0.5% commitment fee and 0.5% closing fee.

How do I apply?

You can apply on the NJEDA Microloan website by filling out an application and setting up a time to speak with an NJEDA business development officer. You can also set up an appointment by calling 609-858-6767 or emailing customercare@njeda.com.

Who qualifies?

To qualify, your business must meet the following requirements:

  • For-profit business registered in New Jersey
  • Annual revenue less than $1.5 million
  • No more than 10 full-time employees
  • All employees work in New Jersey
  • Have a Division of Taxation Tax Clearance Certificate
  • Startups must complete an entrepreneurship training program or Small Business Development Center counseling sessions

New Mexico

New Mexico launched the COVID-19 Business Loan Guarantee program. It doesn’t offer loans directly but partners with business lenders to back either $50,000 or 80% of the loan balance, whichever is lower.

The idea is to make it less of a risk for banks to lend to businesses struggling due to the coronavirus outbreak. If the business defaults, the government will pay the guaranteed portion.

There are no interest rate caps on these loans, and rates will ultimately be up to the lender.

How do I apply?

Loans through the COVID-19 Business Loan Guarantee program are only available through lenders that the New Mexico Economic Development Department (NMEDD) have approved to start offering these loans. Generally, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  1. Reach out to a lender. Research lenders and ask if they’re willing to offer loans through the program. Consider asking your local bank or a lender your business already has a relationship with.
  2. Wait for the lender to apply. The lender can apply to offer funds through the program on the NMEDD website. If approved, the lender and NMEDD will sign a guarantee agreement.
  3. Receive your funds. After the guarantee is in place, the lender sends your business funds.
Who qualifies?

Currently, there are no requirements outside of being a small business based in New Mexico. Lenders may have additional requirements, however.

Additional SBA assistance

In addition to loans and grants, the SBA will cover the principle, interest and fee payments for six months on all 7(a) loans — including Community Advantage loans — and non-SBA microloans. It’s also was automatically deferring all payments on current disaster loans until December 31, 2020, so your business doesn’t need to apply.

The SBA is also making SBA resources more widely available by publishing essential information in the 10 most commonly-spoken languages in the US. This includes Mandarin, Cantonese, Japanese and Korean.

Grants available to business owners affected by the coronavirus

Some local governments like New York City and companies like Amazon have started offering cash grants to businesses affected by the coronavirus. These tend to be smaller than loans and are limited to businesses in specific geographic areas.

You can find out if grants are available in your area by contacting your local business department and any corporations with headquarters where you operate.

Visit our page on business grants to see all of your options

Banks offering coronavirus assistance to businesses

These banks are part of a growing list of lenders that are offering financial assistance to small businesses that have been affected by the coronavirus.

BankAssistanceCustomer service help lineWhere to find more info
Bank of AmericaBank of America won’t report late payments to credit bureaus for up-to-date business accounts, in addition to the following relief:

  • Deposit accounts. Refunds on overdraft, monthly maintenance and nonsufficient funds fees
  • Credit cards. Refunds on late and payment deferral fees
  • Small business loans. Payment deferral and late fee refunds.

 

  • Banking customers: 888-287-4637
  • Credit card customers: Call the number on the back of your card
Learn more
CitibankCitibank is offering the following assistance for retail and small business products:

  • Waived monthly service fee
  • Waived remote deposit capture fee
  • Waived early withdrawal fee on CDs
Call the number on your statementLearn more
Fifth Third Bank
  • Small business loans. Defer loans for up to 90 days with no fees and the option to modify repayments. Fees are waived for 6 months on Fast Capital loans.
  • Deposit products. Waived fees for 90 days
877-534-2264Learn more
Santander
  • Credit products. Payment extensions, deferment or suspensions, refunds on late fees
  • Deposit accounts. Waived overdraft fees, increased ATM withdrawal limits
  • Credit cards. Increased credit limits.
877-768-2265Learn more
Truist

(Formerly BB&T and SunTrust)

Truist is offering payment assistance relief on business loans and credit cards.
  • Former BB&T clients: 800-226-5228
  • Former SunTrust clients: 800-786-8787
Learn more
U.S. BankHardship assistance on a case-by-case basis.888-287-7817Learn more
Wells FargoPayment deferral, waived fees and other assistance on business loans and credit cards800-219-9739Learn more

Other banks and lenders may be offering assistance on a case-by-case basis. Contact your bank or lender to find out what options are available to you or read our page on financial assistance during the coronavirus outbreak.

9 ways to protect your business and employees during the outbreak

Keep your bottom line and employees safe by taking these precautions, as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

  • Ask employees to stay home. The CDC advises businesses to encourage sick employees to stay home. And allowing all employees to work from home if possible can help prevent spreading COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
  • Separate sick employees. If an employee shows up with a cough, shortness of breath or a fever, have them work in an area away from other employees, if not sent home right away.
  • Invest in cleaning. Have your regular cleaning crew do a deep clean with disinfectant, making sure they wipe down frequently touched surfaces like door handles, desks and keyboards.
  • Leave reminders on hygiene. Hang posters reminding employees of CDC-recommended practices, like frequently washing hands for 20 seconds, coughing and sneezing into tissues, and avoiding touching their faces.
  • Bend company etiquette rules. Consider holding meetings via video calls instead of in person, encouraging employees to avoid handshakes and loosening up work-from-home policies if at all possible.
  • Encourage direct deposit. Ask employees who receive paper pay checks or cash to sign up to have their salary electronically deposited into their bank accounts.
  • Hold off on taxes. The IRS extended the 2019 tax deadline to July 15, 2020 to free up cash for small businesses and individuals.
  • Learn how to raise money. Invest some time into learning how to crowdfund and fundraise efficiently by using a service like Founder Gym.
  • Apply for financing now. Even if you’re not totally sure you’ll need it. You’ll have an easier time getting approved for financing before your business has been affected. Consider taking out a line of credit, which you can draw from as needed to cover expenses.

How long is the coronavirus outbreak expected to last?

It’s still unclear how long the coronavirus is expected to last, according to the CDC. Many viruses decrease during warmer months, but the CDC says that’s not always the case. And even if the rate of COVID-19 cases decreases in the summer, there’s a chance it’ll come back in the fall.

You can stay up to date on the latest coronavirus news by regularly visiting the CDC COVID-19 landing page.

Bottom line

Look to your local, state and federal government if your business has already been hurt by the coronavirus and needs funds. If you’re afraid your business might be impacted, now is the time to apply for financing. Get started on your search with our guide to business loans.

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