Stay Informed, Stay Solvent, Stay Safe!
With everything that’s going on, this is a crucial time to stay informed about your financial well-being and your overall health. If you or someone you know is a small business owner, an independent contractor, or a freelancer, there are probably provisions for you in the new CARES Act that has just rolled out. Or maybe you’re a laid-off employee who has never filed for unemployment before—here are some great resources to find out more.
CARES Act for You
If you want to read it straight from the source, here’s The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act, and here’s some helpful advice to help you figure it out! The Denver Business Journal published a dos and don’ts article yesterday after speaking with local lenders about caveats for small businesses applying for loans.
To walk through a how-to for freelancers and independent contractors, Forbes Magazine breaks it down in a step-by-step process. Skip past Steps 1 and 2 (the unemployment process and the $1,200 stipend) and you’ll find that you may be eligible for a $10,000 grant under the CARES Act.
For small business owners who are distressed about making payroll, it’s a little tedious, but beneficial to know what you’re signing up for. If you take some time to read about the small business loans, you’ll find out that they may, in fact, be small business grants. You must use the money you receive (2.5 times your monthly payroll) to continue payroll for the loan to be forgiven. Read about these details and more from All Business.
The Town of Castle Rock, Castle Rock Chamber, Castle Rock EDC and Downtown Alliance are working hard to provide resources to Castle Rock entrepreneurs and businesses. Click here for more information about loan assistance, the latest guidelines, requirements and programs specifically for Coloradans.
Loans, Grants and Unemployment
If you already have an existing account with a local bank, that’s the best place to start. Since you will have to submit an application to them, pose your questions to your bankers to get specific answers tailored to your situation. The Economic Injury Disaster Loan is another “loan” that’s actually a grant for up to $10,000 available to some small businesses and independent contractors. Find out if you qualify here.
Facebook is coming to the rescue in a big way. The social media giant will provide grants to small businesses with between two and 50 employees. Check out their Small Business Grants Program to see if you qualify.
The city of Denver will help businesses and their employees weather the financial storm caused by COVID-19 with emergency relief, micro-loans, and a special fund to help individual artists.
The Colorado State government published an incredibly helpful worksheet, COVID-19 Pandemic Scenarios & Benefits Available, which shows what you are eligible to apply for, given a range of scenarios from furloughed employee to independent contractor to primary caregiver of a child who can’t attend school due to COVID-19.
Keep Your Wallet Safe
We’ve said it before, but sadly it keeps happening. Scam artists take advantage of these chaotic times. Here are some new scams the FCC says to steer clear of.
Text messages may falsely tell you that you need to respond to them in order to get your $1,200 check from the government or that there is a mandatory test for coronavirus. Do not click on any links in these messages! Check out CDC’s website for the most current information.
The Better Business Bureau warns that you may get a text about fake masks, fake government grants, and fake coronavirus tests. Government organizations do not contact you via text. If you click on a link, it may expose your phone to malware and compromise your identity.
Stay Safe in the Grocery Store
For suggestions on how to stay safe while food shopping, one Women’s Health writer went shopping with a doctor! No longer a mindless task, grocery shopping has become a strategic activity in the time of coronavirus.
Since the virus can be spread by fellow shoppers as well as workers, the 6-foot distancing is the most important rule to observe. The virus can also live on surfaces for up to three days, so touching anything in the store (including the food you pick up) mandates that you not touch your face and that you wash your hands immediately afterwards. Masks have also been recently added to the “must do” list for shopping.
The doctor pointed out some smaller precautions: don’t take your phone or purse into the store. Instead, make a list on paper that you can later throw away. Going earlier in the day is better—the store tends to be cleaner and there are fewer people there. Finally, she suggests changing out of your clothes immediately upon arriving home—and putting them into the washing machine. Drastic? Maybe. But every day this virus seems to be more and more pernicious.
Stay Healthy with the QuarRUNtine!
A reminder of better days, a community race can really lift spirits! While group races are off limits, Castle Rock has come up with an alternative: the QuaRUNtine! This Run/Walk/Bike challenge takes place over the course of April, and allows you to sign up and post your individual activity—all to benefit small businesses in the community!
Be Safe and Healthy in Crystal Valley
Stay safe and informed in the master-planned community of Crystal Valley! Check out the beautiful model homes from D.R. Horton, Century Communities, Kauffman Homes, and Richmond American Homes via in-person walk throughs, private tours scheduled with sales associates, and/or many of our ranch and two-story models are also viewable online through virtual tours. With mortgage interest rates staying so attractively low, it’s a great time to buy a brand new home priced from the $300s.