Here are the states restricting travel from within the US

As cases of and deaths from Covid-19 continue to climb in the United States, officials are implementing travel restrictions to try to stop the coronavirus from spreading.
Read in CNN:

Understanding the Cares Act

Seeking to help our members understand the CARES Act, IHFRA reached out to its attorney, Adam Glazer at the renowned law firm of Schoenberg, Finkel, Newman and Rosenberg LLC.

Mr. Glazer graciously broke the Act down to the following primary components for our members:
Loan Assistance:
An eligible self-employed individual, independent contractor, or sole proprietorship seeking a covered loan can submit such documentation as is necessary to establish such individual as eligible, including payroll tax filings reported to the Internal Revenue Service, Forms 1099–MISC, and income and expenses from the sole proprietorship, as determined by the Administrator and the Secretary.  Work with a bank or other lender that has experience administering SBA loans.
Unemployment Benefits:
A self-employed individual who is otherwise able to work and available for work is eligible for unemployment compensation of applicable state law, if such individual is unemployed, partially unemployed, or unable or unavailable to work because the individual’s place of employment is closed as a direct result of the COVID–19 public health emergency.
Mr. Glazer also furnished additional information supplied by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
On behalf of our members, IHFRA wished to thank Mr. Glazer and his firm for this timely information.

Coronavirus Emergency Loans

Coronavirus Emergency Loans Small Business  Guide and Checklist
Prepared by the US Chamber of Commerce
Click below to open pdf
US Chamber SBA PPP Loan Breakdown


We know this is short notice but as the stimulus package just passed we wanted to get information out now. HFA is ready to host a webinar right away with Chris Andresen.
Please join in if at all possible. Here is the link. 1pm PST/3pm CST/4pm EST
President Trump will sign into law today an historic, $2 trillion stimulus package, setting up a much-needed jolt to an economy reeling from the coronavirus pandemic. The bill includes almost $400 billion to help small businesses retain their payrolls. What does this mean to your furniture store? How do you apply for relief assistance? Join us this afternoon for a breaking webinar with HFA's GRAT team and lobbyist Chris Andresen.

House Passes $2 Trillion Relief Bill

Coronavirus Live Updates: House Passes $2 Trillion Relief Bill


President Trump, who had questioned the need for additional ventilators, pushes industry to make more. A new survey of mayors finds dire shortages of urgently needed medical supplies. And in Britain, Prime Minister Boris Johnson tested positive.


The House passed the $2 trillion stimulus package by voice vote, sending it to President Trump for his signature.

Congress gave final approval on Friday to the largest economic stimulus package in modern American history, a $2 trillion measure designed to respond to the coronavirus pandemic and deliver direct payments and jobless benefits for individuals, money for states and a huge bailout fund for businesses battered by the crisis.

The House approved the measure by voice vote, after leaders in both parties deflected an effort by Representative Thomas Massie, a Kentucky Republican with a penchant for using procedural maneuvers to try to block legislation, to force a recorded vote requiring lawmakers to register their positions individually. It now heads to President Trump’s desk, where he is expected to sign it.


 How small-business owners and the self-employed can take advantage of the coronavirus stimulus package

At a whopping 57 million, self-employed people make up a huge piece of the country’s economic puzzle. But during a global pandemic, when business starts drying up, those who work for themselves are among the most vulnerable.
Take the example of a freelance photographer who makes a living taking photos for corporate events, professional portfolios, or marketing materials. With social distancing and entire states on lockdown, group gatherings are a thing of the past, and headshots are not likely to be topping most companies’ to-do lists. While a larger company may be able to shoulder the financial burden of an idle workforce by dipping into reserves, that’s not often true when you work for yourself.
If your business is already taking a hit, it’s good to know your options—including what’s in the stimulus package and how to protect your assets and livelihood during this crisis.

How to collect unemploymentbenefits in your state

Usually most self-employed people or independent contractorsaren’t eligible for unemployment except in some cases in which someone has set up business as an S-corp. But things have changed. Congress recently passed a $2 trillion stimulus package, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Securities Act (CARES), that includes expanding unemployment insurance to self-employed workers and independent contractors. The bill extends unemployment benefits for 13 more weeks and also includes an additional $600 a week on top of state unemployment benefits for up to four months. The rate of state pay may be less for self-employed, independent contractors, and freelance workers.
Not everyone who is self-employed will qualify for unemployment, but it does make it an option for many more people. Also eligible for unemployment: anyone who becomes sick and is ordered to be quarantined.
To apply for unemployment benefits, visit your state’s unemployment website. The information you will need includes your Social Security number, your driver’s license or state ID, and Social Security numbers of any dependents you are claiming.


$2 Trillion Coronavirus Stimulus Package...What's in it???

The Senate Just Passed a $2 Trillion Coronavirus Stimulus Package. Here’s What's in It

UPDATED: MARCH 26, 2020 9:17 AM EDT | ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: MARCH 25, 2020 8:31 PM EDAfter days of intense and dramatic negotiations, the Senate passed a landmark $2 trillion relief package for millions of Americans and businesses hurt by the coronavirus pandemic.
The bill includes direct $1,200 cash payments to many Americans; $150 billion to help the healthcare industry; $500 billion for state and local governments and companies; and $350 billion in loans and assistance for small businesses.
The measure passed unanimously, although only 96 Senators were present because four were in quarantine after exposure to the coronavirus. The measure must now pass the House of Representatives before heading to President Donald Trump’s desk. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said there will be a voice vote on Friday morning, which does not require in-person participation. While passage is not guaranteed, Senators on both sides of the aisle expressed confidence they had reached a deal that would pass the Democrat-majority House.
“Over the past few days, the Senate has stepped into the breach. We packed weeks or perhaps months of the legislative process into five days. Representatives from both sides of the aisle and both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue have forged a bipartisan agreement in highly partisan times, with very little time to spare,” Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said on the floor in remarks preceding the vote. “It’s been a long, hard road, with a remarkable number of twists and turns, but for the sake of millions of Americans, it will be worth it.”


Tax Aspects Of The CARES Act

A helpful article from Tony Nitti

A nation desperate for any reason for optimism got just that on Wednesday evening, with word that Congress had finally agreed upon a stimulus package designed to reverse the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Senate overwhelmingly passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, and the House is set to do the same on Friday, paving the way for the President to sign the bill into law.
In addition to providing a large cash infusion to hospitals and broader access to COVID-19 testing to individuals, the CARES Act aims to boost the economy with over $2 trillion in relief, ranging from individual rebates and small business loans to increased unemployment benefits and a wide variety of tax breaks.


Join IDS for our Virtual Educational Series! All webinars will be hosted on Zoom, and you must register using the links below.

TUESDAY, MARCH 24TH, 4:00 - 5:15 PM EST

Presenter: Nancy Ganzekaufer

Topic: What You Can do Now to Stay Focused and Keep Your Business Active


THURSDAY, MARCH 26TH, 1:00 - 2:15 PM EST

Presenter: Brad Clinard

Topic: Financial Design and Navigating Times of Uncertainty

In this webinar, Brad will provide an overview of how Financial Design can empower you as a successful interior designer. His passion is helping designers work towards viewing money as an abundant resource that can be approachable and even fun. However, with the challenges we are facing, he will also share some insight on navigating uncertainty and provide insight about potential impacts of the coronavirus including the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. He will be sharing a resource for IDS members to gain clarity on their investments and provide thoughts on how to survive an economic recession.

TUESDAY, MARCH 31ST, 1:00 - 2:15 PM EST

Presenter: Debra Scarpa

Topic: 7 Digital Changes to Help Your Business Survive and Be Better Than Before

In this webinar, Home Designer Marketing will uncover 7 action items for you to move your business online and survive during this crisis. Including: online meeting software tips, messaging in social media posts, ideas for building up your content calendar, live videos, file storage and project sharing, and how to audit your online presence. We’ll also include a couple of workbooks to take with you to help get you started. Our hope for this webinar is for you to leave with at least 1 thing you can do immediately to help your business survive and be better than it was before.



Presenter: Michelle Lynne

Topic: Managing Your Players From a Distance


TUESDAY, APRIL 14TH, 1:00 - 2:15 PM EST

Presenters: Jenna Gaidusek, Sarah Durnez and Kelly Fridline

Topic: eDesign 101



Presenter: Traci Connell

Topic: How To Get Back Up When Life Knocks You Down


THURSDAY, APRIL 16TH, 1:00 - 2:15 PM EST

Presenter: Yian Quach

Topic: Website Essentials to Survive an Economic Recession as an Interior Designer

In a down economy, there are fewer projects to go around. Are you doing enough to set yourself apart? In this webinar, Yian Quach will demonstrate several specific ways to elevate your website so you can attract more of your ideal clients. Since 2015, Yian has helped over 100 interior designers from those just starting out to award-winning designers published in Architectural Digest, Luxe, and more.

IHFRA members, contact your elected leaders now


IHFRA joins the Home Furnishing Association in urging members to contact their elected representatives

The International Home Furnishings Representatives Association urges members to contact their elected representatives and ask for help to protect their businesses through the public health crisis. A sample message to members of Congress might say this:
Dear Representative (Name) or Senator (Name):
Communities across the country are in crisis amid the uncertainty of the coronavirus outbreak. As a furniture retail business owner, this uncertainty has severely impacted my employees, customers and our ability to operate. We are working to comply with federal, state and local declarations, but the larger effect of those efforts has led to furniture retail business slowing to a halt.
The paid sick and paid family leave provisions impacting businesses with fewer than 500 employees recently signed by President Trump create a significant burden. The 100 percent refundable tax credit is helpful, but the advance payment of those credits included in the recent Senate Republican stimulus proposal, The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, will be critical for my business to maintain cash flow during this crisis.
Other key provisions include the Qualified Improvement Property technical correction. This is an overdue fix to the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which will immediately allow my business and other furniture retailers to realize bonus depreciation benefits that were intended by Congress, retroactively to 2018. I also support the broader tax flexibility provided in the Senate proposal.
The Small Business Interruption Loan Program, funded at $300 billion, will save many businesses. We are trying to do the right thing for our employees, customers and continued operations. These loans will provide desperately needed capital for trying to navigate these unprecedented times. I also support the loan forgiveness aspects to the Senate CARES proposal. Please make sure there are enough resources in place to expedite the processing of loans so that cash-strapped businesses like mine can get immediate relief.
I also favor a mandatory default forbearance period and foreclosure stay by all banks and financial institutions for the next 12 months. This would provide relief if a default occurred because my business could not meet its obligations to a bank or other lender due to severely decreased income during the crisis.
The survival of my business is at stake. I appreciate Congress moving forward quickly on proposals that help relieve the pain we all feel. More will need to be done as the fallout continues.
(Name and business)
Find your local, state and federal elected representatives