US Small Business Administration to help businesses
The U.S. Small Business Administration has included Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach Counties to the disaster declaration in Florida affected by Hurricane Irma that began on Sept. 4, 2017.The counties are eligible for both Physical and Economic Injury Disaster Loans from the SBA. “The recovery efforts from Hurricane Irma will take some time, however, the SBA’s implementation of disaster assistance in the impacted areas will help usher along the process,” said South Florida District Director Francisco “Pancho” Marrero.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. Eligible mitigation improvements may include a safe room or storm shelter to help protect property and occupants from future damage caused by a similar disaster.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 https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.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.