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  • Writer's pictureRebecca Mendoza

Rebecca Mendoza: a Proud SBA 7(a) Geek

SBA consultant

SBA Consultant

We all have that thing – you know, the thing that keeps our attention, that energizes and challenges us. 

When I was a kid, it was the challenge of a difficult jigsaw puzzle. This is old news to colleagues who have known me through my 25 years of SBA experience, but SBA lending is a lot like working a jigsaw puzzle. The SOPs are the edge pieces, and the loan request is the center. You gather documents, review and analyze credit, and structure the deal – all to get everything to fit within the border pieces.

So, it’s true, I could talk SBA all day. I wouldn’t call it an obsession (!), but it ranks high on the list of things I spend time on and enjoy. And it was almost a fluke that got me into SBA lending and then lender SBA consulting services – the bank I worked for at the time wanted to start an SBA program, and asked me to lead it. I was all in and I haven’t looked back!

I’ve been blessed with the best clients and partners, both as a Lender and as an SBA consultant. Some of us have known each other for a long time, and the relationships elevate every meeting and conference I attend. And I especially love SBA lender training. I love looking back over my 25 years as a lender service provider and seeing the lenders out there that I’ve taught, mentored, and even had heated debates with. They’ve brought so much to my SBA understanding, and I’ve brought so much to theirs.

SBA compliance isn’t as hard as it looks. It’s a bit daunting at first, and the sheer page volume of SBA SOPs can be overwhelming, for sure. But we’ve come a long way from the 890-page SOPs when I started!

In all seriousness, SBA portfolio management is similar to commercial lending. There are areas where you have to focus more and document differently in putting together the SBA loan package for eligibility and servicing the file, but it’s not hard to acclimate to it.

And you never know what you’ll get when it comes to an SBA loan. My mentor was assisting with a past-due loan to a SoCal spa/resort. He hadn’t been part of the loan origination and had not yet reviewed the file, so imagine his surprise when he went to do a site visit and discovered it was a “clothing optional” resort!

Yes. There are always surprises. And the fun of helping our clients succeed with their SBA programs will never get old, and will always be why I call myself a proud SBA Geek. I’m always looking forward to – and excited about – the next partnership with new SBA lenders. And if that’s you – get in touch! You can call us at 877-576-0819, or reach out through our Contact form. Haven’t you always wanted to work with an SBA geek?


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