DENVER – State and federal disaster assistance is bringing needed financial help to homeowners, renters and business owners who suffered damage or loss as a result of the Marshall Fire. Emergency management officials encourage those who have applied for assistance and received assistance to use disaster funds for their intended purpose to ensure continued eligibility for assistance.
Funds are available through grants for housing and other needs and through low-interest federal loans for repair or replacement of primary homes, personal property and business recovery.
As part of their award, individuals will receive a letter stating what their disaster assistance is for, whether that is repairs to a specific part of the home, replacement of personal property, or rental assistance to find temporary housing while the home is being repaired or rebuilt.
Rental assistance is initially made available in the amount of one or two months’ rent. If residents are unable to return to their home for a longer period, as may be the case for many individuals and families impacted by the Marshall Fire, they may be eligible for continued rental assistance, but must contact FEMA and provide documentation of how the initial aid was used. Rental assistance funds cannot be used for other disaster related needs.
If individuals have any questions about rental assistance or any other FEMA assistance they have received they may call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) anytime from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. Mountain Time seven days a week until further notice. Multilingual operators are available. Or individuals can visit the FEMA Disaster Recovery Center co-located with the Boulder County Disaster Assistance Center at the following address:
1755 S. Public Road, Lafayette, Colorado.
Here are tips to help applicants get the most out of disaster recovery assistance funds:
- Keep all receipts for disaster related expenses.
- Don’t use disaster recovery payments to pay household bills.
- Don’t use disaster recovery payments to make purchases unrelated to needs created by the disaster.
In addition to the grants available through FEMA, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers federal low-interest disaster loans to businesses of all sizes, most private nonprofits organizations, homeowners and renters.
FEMA’s grants for disaster-related medical and dental expenses, funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who are referred to SBA must complete the loan application to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.
Completing an SBA loan application does not commit applicants to take the loan if it is offered but applying for the loan is an important part of the federal financial disaster assistance process and will help ensure individuals can receive all the aid they are eligible for.
Federal disaster assistance is available to renters, homeowners and businesses in Boulder County, Colorado.