ANNISTON, Ala. – Time’s growing short for citizens in Calhoun, Cullman and Etowah counties who had damages or losses due to the March 19-20 tornadoes and storms; you have less than two weeks to apply for FEMA disaster assistance.
The deadline to register with FEMA is 11:59 p.m., Monday, June 25.
If you are a homeowner or renter, you may qualify for a grant that helps you obtain temporary housing, for essential home repairs, to replace damaged personal property or for other disaster-related needs.
FEMA disaster assistance grants are not taxable and do not affect the applicant’s eligibility for Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare and other federal and state programs.
While you may not be eligible for a disaster grant, you may be called by the U.S. Small Business Administration to let you know you are eligible to submit an application for a low-interest disaster loan. If you do not submit the loan application, you will lose your current eligibility for any other disaster assistance from FEMA.
Next to insurance, SBA is the primary source of funds for real estate property repairs and replacing lost contents following a disaster. Obtaining a low-interest disaster loan may be the solution to your recovery needs by providing you the necessary funds for home repair, rebuilding and property loss.
And before you decide whether or not to apply, keep the following in mind: SBA loans are offered with considerably lower interest rates than conventional home mortgage loans. Homeowners may be eligible for low-interest loans up to $200,000 for primary residence structural repairs or rebuilding.
Additionally, renters and homeowners alike may borrow up to $40,000 to repair or replace clothing, furniture, cars or appliances damaged or destroyed in the disaster.
There is no requirement to take out a loan if one is offered from SBA. If you are approved for a disaster loan, you have the option not to accept the loan.
Registration is quick and easy. It takes about 30 minutes.
- Go online to DisasterAssistance.gov
- Call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 for voice, 711 and Video Relay Service. If you use TTY, call 800-462-7585. The Helpline hours are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Central time, seven days a week. Multilingual operators are available.
- You can download the FEMA app for your cell phone from your phone’s app store and register.
For more information about SBA loans,
- Call SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955. TTY users may call 800-877-8339.
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Applicants are encouraged to apply online on SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
The deadline to file an SBA low-interest disaster loan application also is June 25.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.
FEMA’s mission: Helping people before, during, and after disasters.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling 800-659-2955 (Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call 800-877-8339), emailing email@example.com, or visiting SBA’s Web site at sba.gov/disaster.