Several Florida counties were added to the disaster declaration for Hurricane Ian which began on September 23 on Saturday, allowing more Florida businesses and residents to be eligible to apply for the disaster loan program. at low interest rates from the Small Business Administration.
The disaster declaration now covers Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Hardee, Hillsborough, Lee, Manatee, Orange, Osceola, Pinellas, Polk, Sarasota and Seminole counties in Florida, which are eligible for physical and economic disaster loans from the SBA. Small businesses and most private nonprofit organizations in the following adjacent counties can only apply for Economic Disaster Disaster Loans (EIDLs) from the SBA: Brevard, Broward, Glades, Hendry, Highlands, Indian River, Lake, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Okeechobee, Pasco, Sumter and Volusia in Florida.
“In a major disaster like this, FEMA offers disaster grants to homeowners and renters, and the SBA offers low-interest disaster loans to homeowners, renters, all sizes and to nonprofits,” said Julie Garrett of the SBA.
In many cases, FEMA refers survivors to SBA as part of FEMA’s process, Garrett said. People who are told to apply for disaster loans should, in order to continue moving forward through the FEMA process, even if they think they cannot afford the loans. The application is free and people are not obliged to accept a loan.
The SBA refers applicants to FEMA for a possible supplemental grant if they are not eligible for a loan.
Businesses and private non-profit organizations of any size can borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets damaged or destroyed by a disaster .
For small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture, and most private nonprofit organizations, the SBA offersEconomic Disaster Loans (EIDL)to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster. Economic disaster loan assistance is available whether or not the business has suffered property damage.
Disaster loans of up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace property damaged or destroyed by the disaster. Landlords and tenants can receive up to $40,000 to repair or replace personal property damaged or destroyed by a disaster.
Building back smarter and stronger can be an effective recovery tool for future disasters. Applicants may be eligible for an increase in the loan amount of up to 20% of their physical damage, as verified by the SBA, for mitigation purposes. Eligible mitigation upgrades may include a secure room or storm shelter, sump pump, elevation, retaining walls, and landscaping to help protect property and occupants from future damage from a storm. similar disaster.
Interest rates are as low as 3.04 for businesses, 1.875% for nonprofits, and 2.188% for homeowners and tenants, with terms up to 30 years. Loan amounts and terms are set by the SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial situation.
Applicants can apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) through the SBA’s secure website athttps://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/ela/s/and must apply under SBA statement #17644.
To be considered for all forms of disaster assistance, applicants must apply online atDisasterAssistance.govor download the FEMA mobile app. If online or mobile access is not available, applicants should call FEMA’s toll-free hotline at 800-621-3362. Those using 711 Relay or Video Relay services should call 800-621-3362.
Disaster loan information and application forms can also be obtained by calling the SBA Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (if you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech impediment , please dial 7-1-1 to access the telecommunications relay services) or by sending an e-mail to[email protected]. Loan applications can also be downloaded fromsba.gov/disaster. Completed applications should be mailed to: US Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
The deadline for filing property damage return claims is November 28, 2022. The deadline for returning economic loss claims is June 29, 2023.
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