7 CFR § 4279.120 - Fees and charges.

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§ 4279.120 Fees and charges.

There are two types of non-refundable fees—the guarantee fee and the annual renewal fee. These fees are to be paid by the lender but may be passed on to the borrower.

(a) Guarantee fee. The guarantee fee is paid at the time the Loan Note Guarantee is issued and may be included as an eligible use of guaranteed loan proceeds. The amount of the guarantee fee is determined by multiplying the total loan amount by the guarantee fee rate by the percentage of guarantee. The rate of the guarantee fee is established by the Agency in an annual notice published in the Federal Register. Subject to annual limits set by the Agency in the published notice, the Agency may charge a reduced guarantee fee if requested by the lender for loans of $5 million or less when the borrower's business:

(1) Supports value-added agriculture and results in farmers benefiting financially,

(2) Promotes access to healthy foods, or

(3) Is a high impact business development investment as defined in § 4279.2 and applied in accordance with § 4279.166(b)(4) and is located in a rural community that:

(i) Is experiencing long-term population decline;

(ii) Has remained in poverty for the last 30 years;

(iii) Is experiencing trauma as a result of natural disaster;

(iv) Is located in a city or county with an unemployment rate 125 percent of the Statewide rate or greater; or

(v) Is located within the boundaries of a federally recognized Indian tribe's reservation or within tribal trust lands or within land owned by an Alaska Native Regional or Village Corporation as defined by the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

(b) Annual renewal fee. The annual renewal fee is paid by the lender to the Agency once a year. Payment of the annual renewal fee is required in order to maintain the enforceability of the guarantee as to the lender.

(1) The Agency will establish the rate of the annual renewal fee in an annual notice published in the Federal Register. The amount of the annual renewal fee is determined by multiplying the outstanding principal loan balance as of December 31 of each year by the annual renewal fee rate by the percentage of guarantee. The rate that is in effect at the time the loan is obligated remains in effect for the life of the guarantee on the loan.

(2) Annual renewal fees are due on January 31. Payments not received by April 1 are considered delinquent and, at the Agency's discretion, may result in the Agency terminating the guarantee to the lender. The Agency will provide the lender 30 calendar days' notice that the annual renewal fee is delinquent before terminating the guarantee. Holders' rights will continue in effect as specified in Form RD 4279–5, “Loan Note Guarantee,” and Form RD 4279–6, “Assignment Guarantee Agreement,” unless the holder took possession of an interest in the Loan Note Guarantee knowing the annual renewal fee had not been paid. Until the Loan Note Guarantee is terminated by the Agency, any delinquent annual renewal fees will bear interest at the note rate, and any delinquent annual renewal fees, including any interest due thereon, will be deducted from any loss payment due the lender. For loans where the Loan Note Guarantee is issued between October 1 and December 31, the first annual renewal fee payment is due January 31 of the second year following the date the Loan Note Guarantee was issued.

(3) Lenders are prohibited from selling guaranteed loans on the secondary market if there are unpaid annual renewal fees.

(c) Routine lender fees. The lender may establish charges and fees for the loan provided they are similar to those normally charged other applicants for the same type of loan in the ordinary course of business, and these fees are an eligible use of loan proceeds. The lender must document such routine fees on Form RD 4279–1, “Application for Loan Guarantee.” The lender may charge prepayment penalties and late payment fees that are stipulated in the loan documents, as long as they are reasonable and customary; however, the Loan Note Guarantee will not cover either prepayment penalties or late payment fees.

(d) Professional services. Professional services are those rendered by persons generally licensed or certified by States or accreditation associations, such as architects, engineers, accountants, attorneys, or appraisers, and those rendered by loan packagers. The borrower may pay fees for professional services needed for planning and developing a project. Such fees are an eligible use of loan proceeds provided that the Agency agrees that the amounts are reasonable and customary. The lender must document these fees on Form RD 4279–1.