Marianas Residents Encouraged To Apply For Small Business Loans

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Low-interest loans available for typhoon recovery

By Gaynor Dumat-ol Daleno

HAGÅTÑA, Guam (Pacific Daily News, Aug. 19, 2015) – Saipan residents in need of typhoon recovery assistance are encouraged to see if they qualify for low-interest disaster loan programs with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Despite its name, SBA disaster programs aren’t limited to businesses. Rick Jenkins, spokesman for SBA’s disaster assistance office, said homeowners or renters are encouraged to visit the Disaster Recovery Center in Susupe, Saipan, to see if they can avail themselves of low-interest disaster loan programs with SBA to replace typhoon-damaged household items and repair or rebuild their Soudelor-damaged homes.

A homeowner can borrow up to $200,000, and a business can borrow up to $2 million, but the approved amount will depend on the need and ability to repay, he said. Homeowners can see interest rates as low as 1.8 percent and businesses as low as 4 percent.

For past devastating storms, Jenkins said SBA approved:

The first step to receiving federal disaster assistance is to register with FEMA.

FEMA provides some funds for disaster recovery for those who qualify, but SBA is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property, according to FEMA.

SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private nonprofit 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, FEMA stated. If a survivor qualifies for a FEMA grant, FEMA will send a check by mail or deposit money directly into the survivor’s bank account, according to a FEMA statement. A survivor also will receive a letter describing how a FEMA grant should be used.

If FEMA denies a grant application, survivors can call FEMA at 800-621-3362 or (TTY) 800-462-7585 to understand why an application was denied. Disaster survivors can appeal a FEMA denial in writing within 60 days of FEMA’s decision. The appeal can be sent:

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