Agents and brokers can now get loans and payments akin to unemployment insurance thanks to a bill lawmakers passed last week.

As the coronavirus continues to spread, and as lawmakers prepare to pump trillions of dollars of stimulus money into the economy, the California Association of Realtors (C.A.R.) has compiled a list of programs and resources where agents in need can get financial aid.

The list is hosted on CAR’s website and, the organization notes, will be continually updated as new programs and opportunities become available. As of Friday evening — shortly after President Trump signed the historic aid bill into law — C.A.R.’s page was divided into four sections:

U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans

According to C.A.R., the “U.S. Small Business Administration is providing low-interest economic injury disaster loans (EIDLs) to small businesses that have been severely impacted by COVID-19.” Small businesses may get up to $2 million to help them overcome losses suffered during the pandemic, and the money can be used for a variety of expenses such as payroll or bills.

Thanks to the CARES Act, businesses with fewer than 500 employees may also qualify for loans of up to $10 million, CAR also explains.

For more information on these options, visit CAR’s fact sheets for agents and brokers.

Tax Credits for Sick Leave for Independent Contractors

This section on C.A.R.’s resource page explains that a recently passed bill, dubbed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, allows independent contractors who get the virus to take a tax credit for sick leave. They can also take a tax credit if they had to take leave to care for a family member who became ill or a child who was out of school due to outbreak-related closures.

Direct Financial Assistance for Small Business Owners and Independent Contractors

Recent legislation also offers business owners and independent contractors payments similar to unemployment insurance, C.A.R. also explains on its resource page. Agents may be “eligible for payments of $600 plus the amount for which the Realtors would be eligible under state unemployment compensation law as if the Realtor were an employee.”

“Payments would be available for up to 39 weeks,” C.A.R. also explains. “An additional 13 weeks of unemployment compensation may be available if those 39 weeks are exhausted.”

For more information on these programs, visit CAR’s unemployment resource pages for agents and brokers.

Relief Programs for Employers

C.A.R. also notes that under new legislation employers with fewer than 500 workers must offer two weeks of paid sick leave. However, the “employer will receive a tax credit to offset the cost of providing this paid sick leave.”

For more information on how this program works, visit C.A.R.’s website.

Inman has also broken down the stimulus bill. For more information on how it will impact real estate professionals, read Inman’s prior coverage here.

Email Jim Dalrymple II

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