Jeffrey Sheffler is the Government Guaranteed Lending Program manager for Associated and oversees the program for Wisconsin, Illinois and Minnesota.
The process can be initiated at any Associated Bank
said that the program offers a number of benefits."The great thing about the Patriot Express program is, even though it carries the higher bank guarantee of the Patriot Loan Program, the paperwork for the borrowers is as streamlined as the regular SBA Express program.As the name implies, the paperwork is kept to a minimum in order to expedite the borrowers' loan application," he
A quicker process, however, doesn't mean that normal loan application requirements are omitted.Typical underwriting criteria are used to evaluate the loan, and a business plan is usually needed.Since the loans are available for most business purposes including start-up, expansion, equipment purposes, working capital, inventory or business-occupied real estate purchases, it is important to show what you need the money for and how you plan to repay the loan.
"The applicant only gets one chance to make a first impression on the banker," Sheffler
said."The business plan should essentially be complete, including financial projections, and copies of historical business/personal financial data."
In addition to the business plan, the loan program requires a minimum down payment of 10 percent of the requested loan total.However, Sheffler
said that the bank might dictate a higher down payment than the minimum required by the SBA. Sheffler
said that vets with a bad credit rating could still get a loan if they meet the other criteria and if the reasons for the low score are justified.
Currently, the SBA guarantees more than $1 billion annually in loans for veteran-owned businesses.And, with the launch of the Patriot Express Loan initiative, the SBA is hoping to increase those numbers.But, Sheffler
doesn't want vets to think that the program is an easy way to get money.
"This perception is incorrect and an urban legend at best.Planning to own your own business should take some time and yes, perhaps, even some struggles, so that the applicant is very certain of the personal risk that they are taking for the hope of personal return and/or satisfaction in the future.No one plans to fail, but many people fail to plan," he