Customer Relief Solutions
We recognize that some of you are facing financial hardships as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. We're here to help our customers and communities during these challenging times.
- Consumer, Home Equity and Mortgage Loans
- Paycheck Protection Program
- National Coin Shortage
Consumer, Home Equity and Mortgage Loans
If you're unable to make your full monthly loan payment, you may be eligible for short-term relief.
If you're interested in receiving information on this option, please fill out the form here.
After you complete the form above, we'll email you information about a short-term relief option that may be available to you. Please review this information and click the enclosed link if you're interested in applying. A Northwest representative will contact you on a recorded line within 1-3 business days, Monday - Friday, to discuss partial payments and other terms and conditions. After the short-term modification has been approved, all borrowers must sign and return the short-term agreement with any partial payment.
If you have any questions, please contact your local office or call our Customer Contact Center at 1-877-672-5678.
If your business has been affected by coronavirus, we can provide relief solutions and help you better understand the current government loan assistance programs. To find out more, contact your business lender, treasury management advisor or our Customer Contact Center at 1-877-672-5678.
Small Business Administration (SBA) Programs
At Northwest, we care about our Small Business and Commercial clients and are committed to helping businesses navigate these challenging times. As a long-standing Preferred SBA Lender, we have been closely following the SBA and its lending programs for use in COVID-19 relief. Our experienced team of SBA lenders are well-versed in SBA loan programs and are dedicated to providing your business guidance and advice as the government delivers assistance programs and options to support your business.
Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
Through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, relief dollars were allocated to help small businesses through the coronavirus pandemic. Within this Act, the government authorized the Small Business Administration (SBA) to back Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans through local lenders.
We are pleased to announce that in the first rounds of the PPP, nearly 100% of applications we received were approved by the SBA— 4,670 loans that provide more than $445 million worth of relief.
Current Round – announced January 8, 2021
On December 27, 2020, President Trump signed The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, providing additional COVID-19 relief. As a result, on January 8, 2021, the U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the U.S. Treasury Department, announced reopening of the Paycheck Protection Program for new borrowers and certain existing borrowers.
We're pleased to let you know that we are now accepting online PPP applications for existing Northwest business customers who are eligible according to the SBA’s guidelines. If you’re interested in applying, please contact your Northwest relationship manager or email PPPApplications@northwest.com.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is the Paycheck Protection Program?
The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act or CARES Act, which provided $2 trillion of aid and stimulus for both individuals and businesses. Through the first two rounds, the PPP authorized up to $669 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees during the COVID-19 crisis. On January 8, 2021, the SBA announced the program would reopen with an additional $284 billion in funding provided through the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.
When can I apply?
Today - small businesses and sole proprietorships can apply for and receive loans to cover their payroll and other certain expenses through existing SBA lenders.
Where can I apply?
If you are interested in applying, please contact your Northwest relationship manager or email PPPApplications@northwest.com.
Who can apply?
All businesses – including nonprofits, veteran’s organizations, Tribal business concerns, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors – with 300 or fewer employees can apply. Click here for additional details from the SBA.
What do I need to do to apply?
Before you begin the application process, be sure you have the following:
- Annual Revenue
- Tax Identification Number (TIN)
- Employee & Payroll Information
- Business Address & Contact Information
- Payroll Tax Information
- Beneficial Ownership Information
- 2019 and 2020 Quarter-to-Quarter Revenue Information
- Your Northwest checking or savings account number.
You can find your Northwest account number on the bottom of your checks, on your account statements or in Northwest Business Online Banking, here:
Click the account tile to find your full account number:
You should also be prepared to provide copies of the following documents:
- Driver’s License(s) (for every owner over 20%)
- Tax Forms 940, 941 (last 4 quarters) & 944
- 2019 Schedule C or copy of internal statement (sole proprietors only)
- State and Local Tax Withholdings
- Health Insurance Premiums
- Retirement Plan Funding
- Detailed Payroll Report by Employee – 12-month history
- Corporate Entity Documents
How do you define the Principal of each business type?
- For a self-employed individual, independent contractor, or a sole proprietor, the self-employed individual, independent contractor, or sole proprietor.
- For a partnership, all general partners and all limited partners owning 20% or more of the equity of the Borrower, or any partner that is involved in the management of the Borrower’s business.
- For a corporation, all owners of 20% or more of the Borrower, and each officer and director.
- For a limited liability company, all members owning 20% or more of the Borrower, and each officer and director.
- Any individual hired by the Borrower to manage the day-to-day operations of the Borrower (“key employee”).
- Any trustor (if the Borrower is owned by a trust).
- For a nonprofit organization, the officers and directors of the Borrower.
What can I use these loans for?
- Payroll costs, including benefits
- Interest on mortgage obligations
- Worker protection costs related to COVID-19
- Certain supplier costs and expenses for operations
- Click here for details from the SBA
What counts as payroll costs?
- Salary, wages, commissions, or tips (capped at $100,000 on an annualized basis for each employee);
- Employee benefits including costs for vacation, parental, family, medical, or sick leave; allowance for separation or dismissal; payments required for the provisions of group health care benefits including insurance premiums; and payment of any retirement benefit;
- State and local taxes assessed on compensation; and
- For a sole proprietor or independent contractor: wages, commissions, income, or net earnings from self-employment, capped at $100,000 on an annualized basis for each employee.
How large can my loan be?
- Loans can be for up to 2.5 times of your average monthly payroll costs from 2019 or 2020
- For borrowers in the Accommodation and Food Services sector, the maximum loan amount is 3.5 times the average monthly payroll cost
- In both instances, the amount is subject to a $2 million cap
- The maximum cumulative amount for PPP loans is $10 million
What is my interest rate?
1.00% fixed rate.
When is my loan due?
In five years.
Can I pay my loan earlier than five years?
Yes. There are no prepayment penalties or fees.
Do I need to pledge any collateral for these loans?
No. No collateral is required.
What documentation do I need to provide to corroborate that my entity sustained at least a 25 percent reduction in gross receipts?
On January 19, the SBA issued additional guidance to assist businesses in calculating their revenue reduction and payroll costs and the relevant documentation required.
The following are the primary sets of documentation applicants can provide to substantiate their certification of a 25 percent gross receipts reduction. Only one set is required:
- Quarterly financial statements for the entity. If the financial statements are not audited, the applicant must sign and date the first page of the financial statement and initial all other pages, attesting to their accuracy. If the financial statements do not specifically identify the line item(s) that constitute gross receipts, the Applicant must annotate which line item(s) constitute gross receipts.
- Quarterly or monthly bank statements for the entity showing deposits from the relevant quarters. The applicant must annotate, if it is not clear, which deposits listed on the bank statement constitute gross receipts (e.g., payments for purchases of goods and services) and which do not (e.g., capital infusions).
- Annual IRS income tax filings of the entity (required if using an annual reference period). If the entity has not yet filed a tax return for 2020, the Applicant must fill out the return forms, compute the relevant gross receipts value (see Question 5), and sign and date the return, attesting that the values that enter into the gross receipts computation are the same values that will be filed on the entity’s tax return.
The full guidance document can be found on the SBA’s site.
Information for Northwest PPP customers about forgiveness
If you’re a Northwest PPP customer, we hope that loan forgiveness-- which is a key driver of the program—is on your mind. It’s certainly on ours.
As we monitor what’s happening in Washington, we are working to develop an easy-to-use portal to facilitate the forgiveness process. Through this portal, you’ll be able to-
- Electronically submit and sign your PPP forgiveness application
- Upload supporting documentation
- And, communicate directly with our team
Keep in mind, the portal is the only way to apply for forgiveness through Northwest. We will not be accepting paper applications.
To ensure you're prepared when our portal opens, we encourage you to continue to review the guidance for forgiveness and gather required documentation. Please visit the SBA’s website here for the latest on PPP loan forgiveness.
We also recommend that you check out this one-hour pre-recorded webinar released by the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) on the PPP forgiveness process.
We’ll provide you with more information on both the forgiveness process and our portal as it becomes available.
What can you do in the meantime?
As you prepare to apply for forgiveness, we recommend that you read up on all the forgiveness rules and requirements. You’ll find the latest on the PPP and forgiveness guidance on the SBA’s website here.
What’s most important is that you make sure you are doing everything within the regulation to maximize the amount of forgiveness you can receive. Actively managing your staff and payroll now will help ensure you make the most of forgiveness later on in the process.
In September, we released the list of FAQs below to help answer additional questions that may be on your mind.
How does forgiveness work?
If you use your loan's proceeds on qualifying expenses, up to 100% of the principal amount and any accrued interest may be forgiven by the SBA.
Keep in mind, there are certain conditions that may reduce your forgiveness amount-- including a reduction in the number of full-time employees or a decrease in salaries and wages.
What’s a qualifying expense?
To qualify for full loan forgiveness, you must use at least 60% of the funds for payroll. The remaining 40% must be spent on approved non-payroll expenses like utilities and mortgage, rent or lease expenses.
When and how do I apply for forgiveness?
We’re nearly ready to release our simple online portal, which you will use to electronically complete, sign and submit your PPP forgiveness application.
When our portal is ready, we’ll send you an email with detailed instructions on how to start the loan forgiveness process.
Keep in mind, our portal is the only way to apply for forgiveness through Northwest. We will not be accepting paper applications.
Since the SBA released a PPP loan forgiveness application, can I complete and submit my application to Northwest now?
No. We will only accept applications through the Northwest online loan forgiveness portal, which will be released shortly.
Our teams are working hard to update our online portal to reflect the SBA’s revised and new forms. When it’s available and ready to accept applications, we will send you an email with a link and detailed instructions on how to start the loan forgiveness process.
Can I submit my forgiveness application in paper form?
No. We are not accepting paper applications. We’ll email you when our easy-to-use online portal is ready to accept forgiveness applications.
When will I be able to submit my forgiveness application?
To ensure we're processing forgiveness applications as efficiently as possible, we're launching our forgiveness portal to borrowers in waves through early 2021. When it's your time to apply, we'll email you an invitation with detailed log-in instructions.
What is the SBA Form 3508EZ and how do I qualify to use it?
The SBA’s “EZ” form will allow certain borrowers to use a streamlined forgiveness application, including reduced documentation requirements. You can use the “EZ” form, which will be available through our portal, if one of the following conditions applies:
- You are self-employed and have no employees; OR
- You did not reduce the salaries or wages of your employees by more than 25% and did not reduce the number or hours of your employees; OR
- You experienced reductions in business activity as a result of health directives related to COVID-19 and did not reduce the salaries or wages of your employees by more than 25%.
I’m concerned about missing a loan payment—do I owe money now?
- If you plan to apply for forgiveness,your payments will be deferred until after you submit your forgiveness application and we receive your funds from the SBA.
- If you don’t plan to apply for forgiveness or if forgiveness isn’t granted because you didn’t meet the criteria listed above, your monthly payments will be deferred for 10 months after the last day of your “covered period”.
- Covered period = 8 or 24 weeks after you used all your loan proceeds, or December 31, 2020—whichever comes first.
Monthly payments of principal plus interest will be due after the end of your deferral period.
If my loan is not forgiven, how much is my monthly payment?
It depends on your loan amount and maturity date.
Loans approved on or after June 5, 2020 will have a maturity of five years, and any loan approved before June 5, 2020 will have a maturity of two years, unless there is an agreement to extend the period to five years.
All PPP loans have a fixed interest rate of 1.00%.
If you don’t plan to apply for forgiveness, contact your Northwest relationship manager, who can help you figure out what your monthly payment will be.
Will Northwest pay fees to third-party agents who help clients with the preparation of PPP loan applications?
In the absence of a pre-loan approval written agreement between the agent and Northwest, Northwest does not pay fees or other compensation to agents who represent or help borrowers through the Paycheck Protection Program.
Will there be additional changes to the PPP loan forgiveness process?
You may have seen news reports and other references to government proposals to simplify the forgiveness application process. As an example, a simpler process has been proposed for borrowers who received PPP loans of $150,000 or less.
While it is not known if or how these proposals or potential changes might proceed, we understand these reports may influence decisions on when to apply. Please visit the SBA’s website for the most recent policy updates about the PPP.
If granted forgiveness, when will I receive my funds?
If granted full or a portion of your forgiveness, the funds will be applied to your Northwest PPP loan within 7-10 business days after you receive official notification from the Small Business Administration.
When issued, you can find this notification through our forgiveness portal, under the Documents tab. Be sure to keep this notification and all other PPP documentation in your records for at least six years, as recommended by the SBA.
I received an EIDL Advance- does that impact my PPP forgiveness?
If you received an EIDL Advance, the SBA is required to reduce your loan forgiveness amount by the amount of your EIDL Advance. This means that the forgiveness amount you receive will be your forgiveness-eligible PPP loan less the amount of your EIDL Advance.
As an example-
- You received a PPP loan in the amount of $15,000—all of which is eligible for forgiveness
- You received a $5,000 EIDL Advance
The SBA will provide Northwest with $10,000 in PPP forgiveness toward your loan.
You will owe the remaining balance ($5,000) plus interest to Northwest.
If this applies to you, you will receive a letter from Northwest with your balance amount and options for repayment.
Please click here and navigate to the EIDL Advance section to review official guidance from the SBA about an EIDL Advance’s impact on PPP forgiveness.
What happens if my loan is not forgiven or only partially forgiven?
You will receive a letter from Northwest with your loan balance amount and options for repayment.
How does my PPP loan impact my plan to sell a portion or all of my business?
Please click here for guidance from the Small Business Administration, released October 2, 2020. If you have additional questions, consult your legal or tax professional.
Where can I find my SBA loan number?
You can find your SBA loan number at the top of your Paycheck Protection Program closing documentation, as seen below. If you can’t find your SBA loan number, please contact your Northwest relationship manager.
I received a call or email from a company offering to help me with the PPP loan forgiveness process. Is this company affiliated with Northwest?
No. Other than Lenders Cooperative, the company that provides our forgiveness portal, and Docusign, which allows us to collect electronic signatures, we are not affiliated with any other company offering PPP services.
Where should I go if I have questions?
Please visit the SBA’s website for detailed information about the forgiveness process, covered periods, the type of costs that are eligible for forgiveness and what documentation you will need to submit with your application.
Disclaimer: Borrower acknowledges that Lender is acting solely as the processor in connection with your application for forgiveness of your Paycheck Protection Program Note. Lender shall not be liable to Borrower or any third person for the correctness, validity or genuineness of any instruments, documents or representations released or endorsed to Borrower or the SBA by Lender. Moreover, Borrower agrees that Lender shall not pay any agent fee or any other fee to any third-party associated with any work performed on behalf of the Borrower. To the extent that Borrower has sought any independent legal or accounting advice to complete its application, Borrower acknowledges that Lender did not engage any such agent on Borrower’s behalf and that Lender will not pay for any third-party fee of any type, including any agent fee, to any entity or agent for such work.
The impacts of the national coin shortage
Offices throughout our retail network are currently experiencing a coin shortage. This coin shortage is impacting businesses and financial institutions across the country and is a side effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Why is this happening?
The U.S. Federal Reserve announced their coin inventory has been reduced to lower-than-normal levels due to COVID-19. Specifically, the Fed has seen a significant decline in coin deposits from banks. And, in order to protect its employees, the U.S. Mint temporarily closed and stopped coin production.
In light of this, on June 15 the Fed began rationing their shipments of pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters to all financial institutions. The ration will remain in effect until both the U.S. Mint’s inventory and the recirculation of coins in the marketplace return to normal.
What can you do?
- Rather than cash, use alternate payment methods like debit and credit cards, checks or P2P services like Zelle® or Venmo when you can.
- Or—use coin when making purchases at local businesses.
- If you’re a business, now’s a great time to think about accepting alternate forms of payment. Through Northwest Merchant Services, you can accept debit, credit and gift card payments in-store, online or on-the-go through your mobile device.
- Roll your change and deposit it into the bank. It will help ensure it gets into the hands of the customers and businesses who really need it.