Deadline to apply for small business Administration loan Thursday

Published 7:28 am Tuesday, March 14, 2023

By Travis Gupton

Selma Times-Journal

The deadline for everyone to apply for a Physical Damage Small Business Administration loan is Thursday.

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The January 12 tornado is still causing mayhem in people’s lives two months later and the SBA encourages people still suffering to apply for an SBA loan before the deadline to help.

“We have gotten more referrals than we have gotten applications,” SBA Public Affairs Specialist Sharon Dooley said. “So my thing is for homeowners and renters. For homeowners and renters if FEMA can’t help them or based on the application they put in with them they refer them to SBA. I encourage them to apply to SBA for a loan. Whether they think they can get one or not based on their credit score or their ability to repay it.

“Let the government make that decision. If they can’t, If SBA can’t then they automatically refer them back to FEMA. However, if they never apply with SBA and you get that letter from FEMA referring you to SBA and you just decide to trash it, that limits your options right there. I am encouraging everyone. Please apply by March 16.”

SBA offers low payback options over a long period of time along with other great opportunities for those who are still needing

assistance from the tornado.

“These are low-interest, long-term loans,” Dooley said. “Some of the loans have options of 15-30 years to pay back. For homeowners and renters, the interest rate is 2.313%, and for businesses, it’s 3.305%. For nonprofits it’s 2.375%. So for example, if someone qualifies for a $25,000 loan and they took the loan out and wanted to pay it back in say 30 years. That is roughly $96 dollars a month.

“SBA also waves all the interest for the first year anyway in order to help people try to recover. They have also deferred your first payment to the 12th month after your initial disbursement of any loan proceeds. So here it is almost a year without having to make a payment and you can start getting your home back to where it was.”

Dooley said renters also need to apply because they also can get assistance despite not owning their homes.

“I want to let renters know that they don’t own their home,” Dooley said. “So if you have personal property damage you may qualify for $40,000 for clothing, furniture, or even a vehicle. A lot of people say what about renters? That’s the type of assistance we can help them with.”

SBA does do a credit check with their loan applications but according to Dooley, they are not like normal credit checks.

“When we pull the credit it is less strenuous,” Dooley said. “Our credit score is substantially less strenuous than a normal financial institution. Some qualify and some can’t. You just never know unless you apply.”