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Dealer Floor Plan introduced

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will offer government-guaranteed loans to finance inventory for eligible auto, recreational vehicle, boat and other dealerships under a new pilot program.

Dealer Floor Plan (DFP) financing will be available beginning July 1. It is a line of credit that allows dealers to borrow against their inventory, and then repay that debt as they sell their inventory or borrow against the line of credit again to add new inventory.

Under the DFP pilot program, the SBA will provide loan guarantees for lines of credit through its 7(a) program. DFP loans will be made through SBA lenders only for titled inventory, including autos, RVs, manufactured homes, boats and motorcycles.

The pilot program will begin July 1 and will be available through Sept. 30, 2010, at which time the SBA will make the determination of whether or not to extend the program.

DFP loans will be available for a minimum of $500,000 up to the $2 million allowable under the 7(a) program. With a maximum repayment term of five years, the loans will come with a 75 percent government guarantee. Borrowers will also benefit from the temporary elimination of fees on 7(a) loans made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

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