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SBA Transaction Screen

An important tool for screening environmental risk.

Partner is truly an expert at Small Business Administration (SBA) environmental due diligence for the SBA Advantage Loan Program and the SBA Grow Loan Program, including the SBA Transaction Screen Assessment; a Transaction Screen Assessment is essentially a scaled down version of the Phase I Environmental Site Assessment. The Transaction Screen includes a site visit, regulatory records review, key personnel interviews, and limited historical research.

The only place in the SBA Policy that specifically states when a Transaction Screen can be used as a minimum starting point for environmental due diligence is when financing a car wash-only facility (as long as the property doesn’t also have a gas station, automotive servicing, etc). Car wash facilities are relatively low-risk operations in relation to potential environmental contamination. When reviewing the NAICS code list to determine if a property operation is “environmentally sensitive,” the code for car wash-only facilities is 8111 Automotive Repair & Maintenance. This is technically an environmentally sensitive industry, however, the subtext reads “except for ‘car wash-only’ facilities which can start with a Transaction Screen.”

SBA Transaction Screens are also often ordered in place of the Records Search with Risk Assessment or “RSRA” by lenders who can’t fill out the Environmental Questionnaire (EQ) themselves, either because the property is far away (since the EQ requires a site visit), or because they are uncomfortable filling out the Environmental Questionnaire.