Since the SBA's America's Recovery Capital loan program debuted last summer, First U.S. Community Credit Union has been flooded with applications and the deluge has led to bigger loans for the Sacramento, Calif.-based cooperative.
Even so, the $231 million CU is treading cautiously having only funded 13 loans to date, said Gordon Gerwig, business services manager. Still, the $35,000 ARC loans have generated more business for the CU, which has a $750,000 loan in the pipeline to finance a firm's building.
"We're happy we did them. They've done some good things and kept people from losing their businesses. We're probably among the only ones in Northern California doing the loans."
The down side is even though the ARC loans are small, it still takes as much work to process loans 10 times their size, Gerwig said. Ideally, he would have liked to see the loans go up to $100,000. One offset is the SBA pays the CU monthly interest checks for participating in the program.
According to the SBA, as of May 7, 1,243 lenders have made 7,416 ARC loans amounting to $240 million. The program is authorized through Sept. 30 or until the funds are exhausted, whichever happens first. Approximately $97 million in loan authority remains available.