ATLANTA – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) encourages businesses of all sizes, private nonprofit organizations, homeowners and renters to apply for a disaster loan before the Jan. 12 deadline. Anyone in the declared Florida counties who incurred damage from Sept. 23 through Nov. 4 from Hurricane Ian should apply for the disaster recovery loan program. As of today, the SBA had approved 19,537 Hurricane Ian disaster loans in Florida for a total of $1,377,407,300.
Disaster survivors with insurance should not wait for their settlement before applying to the SBA. The SBA can make a loan for the total loss and use insurance proceeds to reduce or repay the loan.
The SBA offers low-interest, long-term disaster loans to assist those with losses resulting from a declared disaster. Loans are available for physical damage and working capital. To take advantage of this opportunity, disaster survivors need to apply by the deadline.
Interest rates are as low as 3.04 percent for businesses, 1.875 percent for nonprofit organizations, and 2.188 percent for homeowners and renters, with terms up to 30 years. The SBA customizes loan amounts and terms based on each applicant’s unique situation.
Applicants may be eligible for a loan amount increase up to 20 percent of their physical damages, as verified by the SBA, for mitigation purposes. Eligible mitigation improvements may now include a safe room or storm shelter to help protect property and occupants from future damage caused by a similar disaster.
Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/ela/s/ and should apply under SBA declaration # 17644.
To be considered for all forms of disaster assistance, applicants should register online at DisasterAssistance.gov or download the FEMA mobile app. If online or mobile access is unavailable, applicants should call the FEMA toll-free helpline at 800-621-3362. Those who use 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’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (if you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability, please dial 7-1-1 to access telecommunications relay services) or sending an email to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov. Loan applications can also be downloaded from sba.gov/disaster. Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is Jan. 12, 2023. The deadline to return economic injury applications is June 29, 2023.