Coronavirus Business Interuption Loan Scheme FAQs Logo

There’s a lot of noise around the various financial packages the UK government are providing businesses to support them through COVID-19, with more information being released daily.

One of these financial aid schemes is the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme.

As it currently stands, the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans Scheme (CBILS) is offering financial support for SMEs who have been affected by COVID-19 by offering loans of up to £5 million, of which the government will pay interest and fees for the first 12 months of repayments.

Our friends over at Swoop Finance have been inundated with calls regarding this scheme and what it means for UK SMEs. They’ve shared with us the top question they are being asked and we are sharing that with you to help bring some clarity on this scheme and how it is going to work.

What will it cost?

Nothing. There are no fees or upfront costs to access CBILS and the government will pay the first 12 months’ worth of interest payments and lender levied fees.

What if my business is loss-making?

In order to access CBILS, a business has to prove that it was viable before the COVID-19 outbreak. This could mean demonstrating that your business was on track to make a sustainable profit had the outbreak not occurred.

Can you apply for CBILS through multiple funders?

Yes. British Business Bank is operating CBILS with over 40 of its accredited lenders, so it’s important to work with lenders who best meet your needs. Swoop will be able to find the best lender for you and your business, just head over to their website.

Will there be credit checks?

If you apply through Swoop, they will run a soft credit change, just to establish which lenders will be most attracted to your business. This soft check won’t affect your company’s ability to raise funding. However, some lenders will require personal credit checks be carried out, but there are a lot of providers who let you check this without it having an impact on your credit score.

Will I have to link my accounting data?

Initial enquiries can be made without accounting data, but to make sure you’re being matched to the lenders who are right for you, its best to link accounts at the earlier opportunity. The sooner this is done, the sooner you will get a response.

When will I have to pay CBILS back?

Repayment terms will depend on the lender and the type of finance. Term loans and asset finance are repayable up to six years and overdrafts and invoice facilities are repayable up to three years.

Are the banks live with this yet?

Main banks are expected to go live with this scheme over the coming days, so if you are thinking about applying, it’s highly recommended that you register now so your eligibility can be established and you can be matched with a suitable lender. To do this, visit swoop.

Don’t I have to go to my main bank to apply for CBILS?

With over 40 lenders providing the CBILS scheme, each will have a different credit appetite. Just going to your bank might limit your options by not searching the entire market. Swoop can help find the lender best suited to your business needs.

We hope these questions have given you a better idea of CBILS and how you can apply for it. If you have any further questions or want to start your free application, visit our friends over at Swoop.  

Ashleigh Smith
Article by Ashleigh Smith
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