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SBA Application Crucial To Disaster Recovery Process

Release date: 
September 9, 2010
Release Number: 

DOWNERS GROVE, Ill. — Homeowners, renters and businesses who received U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) loan applications when applying for federal assistance are strongly encouraged to complete and return them as soon as possible.

Completing the SBA application is an essential step in qualifying for other types of federal assistance. If SBA finds that a homeowner or renter cannot afford a loan, it refers the applicant back to FEMA for possible further grant assistance. Grants from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) jump-start the disaster recovery process, but total recovery usually costs more than eligible losses covered by a FEMA grant.

For long-term, back-to-normal recovery, the SBA offers a disaster loan program for homeowners, renters, businesses and private nonprofit organizations. Low-interest SBA loans are the largest source of disaster assistance following a disaster. In designated counties affected by a disaster, residents with damages and losses can apply for loans with interest rates as low as 2.5 percent for homeowners and renters and as low as 4 percent for businesses, with terms up to 30 years, as follows:

  • Homeowners may be eligible for loans up to $200,000 for disaster-damaged real estate;
  • Renters and homeowners may be eligible for loans up to $40,000 for disaster-damaged contents and personal property (including automobiles);
  • Businesses and private non-profit organizations of all sizes may be eligible for physical disaster loans for disaster-damaged real estate and/or contents;
  • Small businesses and private non-profit organizations of all sizes may be eligible for loans for economic injury to help with working capital needs due to the disaster.

Applying to FEMA is the first step toward disaster recovery. Individuals can apply online any day of the week at or call 1 800-621-FEMA (3362) from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. dailyTTY users may call 1 800-462-7585. Phone assistance is available in many languages.

SBA Disaster loan information may be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 1 800-659-2955 or TTY 1 800-877-8339 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. EDT and by e-mailing to Apply online at SBA’s secure website at For more information about the SBA disaster loan program, visit the SBA website at

Residents can also receive help with their application and further information on recovery programs at one of four Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) in the designated counties.

FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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