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In a challenging year, business members turned to us for new loans and loan payment deferrals. Although SLFCU processed 482 commercial loans valued at $121 million, including many construction loans, the most gratifying way we helped our members was through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) – a loan program created by the U.S. Congress to help businesses bridge financial gaps caused by COVID-19 restrictions.
Andrew Jaynes, SLFCU’s Senior VP and Chief Credit Officer, notes that in 2020, SLFCU processed 312 PPP loans at a value of almost $15 million, and helped members navigate loan forgiveness applications. “Each PPP loan represents a unique business owner story,” says Andrew. “They’re wrestling with questions like, ‘How do I stay in business when I have no customers? Which of my long-time employees do I lay off to conserve cash? What bills can I pay with my dwindling funds?’. We responded quickly to help ease their burdens and continued a close and caring touch throughout the process.”
Brad Jones, CEO of Corinthian Real Estate, Inc. in Houston, Texas, used his deferred SLFCU loan payments to ease the burdens for most of his 25 small business tenants in Albuquerque. When SLFCU granted pandemic-related payment deferrals on those properties, Brad, in turn, offered his tenants 100% of the deferred funds as rent abatements. “I asked them, ‘Where are you with your finances, and what can we do together?’” says Brad. “I also told these struggling entrepreneurs all deferred rent would be forgiven, as a way to help preserve their businesses.”
Brad adds, “The accommodation and teamwork of SLFCU’s Dan Cover and Casey Bresnahan helped keep our tenants’ businesses alive during this challenging time. I have other lenders for multiple properties, but no other financer was as understanding, cooperative, and supportive as SLFCU!”