HONOLULU–Hawai’i County homeowners and renters with losses from the Kilauea eruptions are utilizing low-interest disaster loans to help fund their recovery.
The U.S. Small Business Administration is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property.
Registering with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and applying with the SBA are critical steps in the recovery process. FEMA and SBA are joint federal partners assisting with Hawaii’s recovery efforts.
“Even the maximum allowable FEMA award is unlikely to replace a disaster damaged home,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Bern Ruiz. “Most disaster recovery is funded by low-interest loans from the SBA.”
SBA can provide loans up to $200,000 to homeowners to repair or replace disaster-damaged real estate and up to $40,000 for personal property, including furniture and automobiles.
Renters are also eligible to apply for low interest disaster loans up to $40,000 to help recover from personal property losses, including furniture, clothing and vehicles.
Low interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration are being used to:
- Repair or replace disaster damaged real estate
- Replace disaster damaged or destroyed personal property including furniture, clothing, appliances and vehicles;
- Make improvements to reduce the risk of future damage.
Most survivors who register for disaster aid with the Federal Emergency Management Agency are referred to SBA for additional disaster recovery funding. Submitting an SBA loan application is an important step in the recovery process because it may qualify the applicant for more FEMA grants.
There is no obligation to accept a disaster loan, if offered.
If the SBA is unable to provide a low interest disaster loan, in many cases applicants are referred back to FEMA for other grant assistance. Applicants have 6 months to request reconsideration with the SBA.
Disaster loans have distinct advantages:
- Disaster loans to homeowners and renters are as low as 1.93 percent
- Terms up to 30 years
- No points or application fees
- Loans may be available prior to insurance settlements
To apply for SBA low-interest disaster loans, business owners, private nonprofits, homeowners and renters can visit the disaster recovery center for one-on-one assistance or apply online using SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
The deadline to apply for an SBA disaster loan is Aug. 13, 2018.
For additional information on FEMA programs and how to register for assistance, go to: www.fema.gov/disaster/4366