Small Business Administration disaster assistance for St. Johns County businesses and residents

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The Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering St. Johns County residents and businesses disaster assistance in the wake of Hurricane Irma. Businesses and private nonprofit organizations of any size may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace disaster damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory, and other business assets. Applicants may be eligible for a loan amount increase up to 20 percent of their physical damages, as verified by the SBA for mitigation purposes.

For small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations, the SBA offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster. Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance is available regardless of whether the business suffered any physical property damage.

Disaster loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace disaster damaged or destroyed real estate. Homeowners and renters are eligible up to $40,000 to repair or replace disaster damaged or destroyed personal property. Interest rates are as low as 3.305 percent for businesses and 2.5 percent for nonprofit organizations, 1.75 percent for homeowners and renters with terms up to 30 years. Loan amounts and terms are set by the SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial condition.

Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via the SBA’s secure website at www.disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. To be considered for all forms of disaster assistance, applicants should register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by mobile device at m.fema.gov. If online or mobile access is unavailable, applicants should call the FEMA toll-free helpline at (800) 621-3362. Those who use 711-Relay or Video Relay Services should call (800) 621-3362.

Additional details on the locations of Disaster Recovery Centers and the loan application process can be obtained by calling the SBACustomer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 (877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an e-mail to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is Nov. 9, 2017. The deadline to return economic injury applications is June 11, 2018.

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