Published on Tuesday, December 1, 2020

The Small Business Administration played a vital role in keeping small businesses afloat this year, offering traditional SBA 504 and 7a loans, Paycheck Protection Program loans and Economic Injury Disaster loans.


OAKLAND, CA—Programs offered by the Small Business Administration played a vital role in keeping small businesses afloat this year, and the SBA achieved historic numbers in small business lending as a result. In addition to the traditional SBA 504 and 7a loans, the SBA offered Paycheck Protection Program/PPP loans and Economic Injury Disaster loans.

The SBA 504 program enables a business owner to purchase, renovate, construct or refinance commercial real estate with only a 10% down payment and below-market fixed-rate financing.

During the pandemic-fueled downturn this year, Oakland-based TMC Financing saw the desperation in its small business community and was compelled to get involved. In fiscal year 2020, TMC provided $305 million for nearly 300 small and mid-sized businesses throughout California and Nevada via the SBA 504 program.

“The 504 program’s 90% financing enables businesses to retain working capital and the long-term below-market fixed interest rate makes monthly payments affordable,” explains Barbara Morrison, TMC’s founder and president. “Additionally, the SBA 504 program can be utilized to refinance commercial real estate debt and receive cash out, which is particularly useful for businesses strapped for cash.”

By utilizing the SBA 504 refinance program, business owners can obtain up to 20% of an appraised property’s value in cash. This cash can be used on qualified business expenses which include salaries, rent, utilities and inventory. Business owners can refinance up to 85% of the appraised value when cash is taken out. Without cash out, business owners can refinance up to 90% of the appraised value. The current SBA 504 refinance rate is a low 2.59% fixed for 25 years.

“Giving small businesses the ability to purchase real estate for their business allows them to stabilize their overhead expenses and take control of their future,” Morrison tells “Business owners can retain precious working capital thanks to the 90% financing, and the below-market rate, fixed for 25 years, makes monthly payments affordable.”

Because SBA’s financing represents a maximum of 40% of the total, this represented $804 million in total project financing for growing businesses that anticipate adding approximately 2,143 new jobs in the next two years.

“The coronavirus forced small business operations to come to a screeching halt with no notice,” said Morrison. “With so many small businesses in desperate need of help, our focus at TMC Financing and our sister company, TMC Community Capital, was to find ways to do more to help small businesses on their road to recovery. It was a year unlike any other, but I am extremely proud of the impact we were able to make. We’re so proud to not only be one of the top providers of SBA 504 loans in the nation, but to be a true advocate for small businesses during this unprecedented, challenging year. To witness the resilience of our local entrepreneurs has been truly inspiring.”

In the recently closed fiscal year, PPP provided an additional 5.2 million loans worth more than $525 billion. In addition to helping business obtain financing via the SBA 504 program, TMC funded more than $105 million PPP loans for 1,120 small businesses. With an average loan size of $94,000, it is likely that the majority of these loans will become grants.

“I’m not embarrassed to say that the PPP approval email I received from TMC had me sobbing,” says Kevin McKee, PPP loan recipient. “To be told I can’t work, and to sit and watch my business die has been emotionally exhausting and super frustrating.  This loan will help save my business and I am so thankful.”