Free Money.. Say it isn’t so!!!
Free money… We have all heard the time old adage of, “There’s no such thing as a free lunch.”, but I’m going to tell you a story that will dispel this myth.
I think back to about a year ago, when I heard the first words of a government program called PPP. The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on payroll. As a small business owner, this intrigued me and I sought to find the answers to this so-called free money program.
I have many friends who are small business owners as well, some have a big companies and others have smaller ones. As I continued to study and examine the rules and procedures of this program, one thing really intrigued me. The PPP program didn’t care how big or small your business was, it was purely based on the income of the respective company. I had talked to other small businesses in my area and found out that some of them had been denied for various reasons and others hadn’t even heard of it.
I went to a local bank that advertised that they taking PPP loans and I decided to apply for one myself. The application process wasn’t difficult at all. I found the instructions and calculations easily understandable and felt somewhat optimistic when I turned the filled application in. The bank told me that I would hear a responses within a week. I only had to wait about five days to find out that I was approved for a PPP loan. I was excited that I had been approved and that my loan was also considered to be eligible for PPP loan forgiveness.https://www.sba.gov/funding-programs/loans/covid-19-relief-options/paycheck-protection-program/ppp-loan-forgiveness. This is the free money I alluded to earlier.
Throughout this COVID pandemic, many small businesses in my time have reduced their hours, cut their employees or just closed their doors. On my best friends, of over 20 years, had a small restaurant and was forced to close because he didn’t have enough income to keep paying his employees and keep his business staffed. He has two young daughters and had just bought a new house and was in dire straights. I felt bad for him and asked him if he had applied for the PPP loan because that could help him pay his employees wages and keep his business afloat. He wasn’t aware of this program and the benefits that came with it.
If he wasn’t aware of it, how many others hadn’t as well. So I did a performed a survey and compiled some good information. Here is a link to my survey regarding the interest and familiarity of the PPP loans. https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1hKDZ_BC3BwrFGDSkycUB-lxv7xEKiEZBdy4TRtaCc_8/edit.
I was able to obtain 52 surveys from various individuals. Since this PPP program is about small businesses and/or self employed individuals, my first two questions dealt with those criteria. Out of the 52 responses to the self-employed question, 27 individuals said that they were.
Out of the 52 responses to the small business owner question, 16 individuals said they were.
I then followed up with another question asking, “If the government were to give you a PPP loan to help support your business, would you apply for it?” Out of those same 52 responses, I was surprised to find out that only 25 people would apply for it, that is only 48.1 percent.
Overall, I believe we need to educate the public more and distribute the benefits and features or the PPP loan. Here is a link to my data statistics of these and other questions asked. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1Vs8WlfjOo9LzwtY5LEVhsWtaYum6VnKmmsimWeun3sg/edit#gid=1324096496
In summation, the PPP loan program is a good tool to keep your business going through these difficult times. It worked for me, I was able to receive $5600 and this loan will be forgiven which will allow me to receive that free lunch,