FEMA Accessible: Reasons to Apply for an SBA Loan


Reasons to Apply for an SBA Loan The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)
has an important responsibility in helping disaster survivors recover. If you have experienced damages or loss
from the recent disaster and have registered with FEMA,
you may be referred to SBA. If you are contacted by SBA regarding a low-interest
disaster loan application, it is important to complete and submit the application
as soon as possible. This will make sure your recovery process moves forward and you have
possible options for more help. Even if you do not believe you need a loan,
you should complete and submit the application. If SBA decides you can get a loan, you are
not required to accept the money. Homeowners and renters who submit an SBA application and have been denied for a loan may be referred to FEMA and could possibly get other FEMA grants and program assistance for
disaster related car repairs, clothing, household items and other expenses. Insurance can help, but it is SBA’s, a government
agency, responsibility to loan money to help with long term rebuilding of disaster damaged
private property. SBA offers low-interest disaster loans to
businesses of all sizes, most private nonprofit organizations,
homeowners and renters. A homeowner may be able to get a disaster
loan for up to $200,000 to repair or replace disaster damaged private property. Homeowners or renters may be able to get up
to $40,000 to repair or replace disaster damaged
personal property. SBA may be able to help homeowners and renters
replace important personal items such as personal property – including automobiles –
damaged or destroyed in the disaster. SBA also offers low-interest working capital
loans (called Economic Injury Disaster Loans) to small businesses and
most private nonprofit organizations having difficulty paying bills as a result of the disaster. To apply for an SBA low-interest disaster
loan, you can apply online using the Electronic Loan Application via SBA’s secure website
at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. You can also visit a FEMA
disaster recovery center (DRC) and meet with an SBA representative in person. SBA has staff at all recovery centers to help
with your applications. To locate the nearest center, call the FEMA
Helpline at 800-621-3362 (VRS) (TTY call 800-462-7585), use the FEMA app for smart phones, or go online to www.fema.gov/DRC. For additional details on the locations of
recovery centers and the loan application process, you can call the SBA Customer Service
Center at 800-659-2955 (VRS) (or TTY 800-877-8339) or send an email to [email protected] You may be able to get additional money to
help pay for the cost of improvements that will protect your property from future damage. Examples of improvements include retaining
walls, seawalls, sump pumps, etc. SBA mitigation loan money would be in addition
to what your previously approved disaster loan amount was, but it may not be more than
20% of the total amount of damage to your private and personal property
that has been verified by SBA. SBA’s approval of any improvement is required
before any loan increase can happen. You should not wait for an insurance settlement
before submitting an SBA loan application. You can begin your recovery immediately with
a low-interest SBA disaster loan. Your SBA loan amount will be lower depending
on what amount of money your insurance company or other sources pay you for your losses. SBA can help businesses and private nonprofit
organizations with up to $2 million to repair or replace disaster-damaged real estate
and other business assets. Eligible small businesses and nonprofits may
apply for economic injury disaster loans to help meet working capital needs to help pay
bills or replace business items lost in the disaster.

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