Virtual centers to connect businesses with aid
Financial assistance is available through the U.S. Small Business Administration for Houston area businesses and residents impacted by the severe winter storms across Texas.
Low-interest federal disaster loans are available as a result of President Biden’s major disaster declaration, Tami L. Perriello, acting administrator of the SBA, announced. The declaration covers 77 Texas counties.
“SBA is strongly committed to providing Texas with the most effective and customer-focused response possible and with access to federal disaster loans to help businesses and residents affected by this disaster,” Perriello said in an announcement.
The SBA will establish a Virtual Business Recovery Center to provide personal assistance to business owners and will open a Virtual Disaster Loan Outreach Center to help homeowners and renters.
Customer service representatives will field questions about the SBA’s disaster loan program, explain the application process and help complete electronic loan applications.
The virtual centers will be open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Central time. They can be reached at FOCWAssistance@sba.gov or 800-659-2955.
Those seeking assistance must register with Federal Emergency Management Agency at www.disasterassistance.gov.
Loan applicantions may be done apply online. Additional disaster assistance information and download applications can be found at https://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/. The contact is email@example.com or 800-659-2955. The programs are open to:
• Businesses and private nonprofit organizations, which borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets. The deadline to apply for loans for physical damage is April 20.
• The SBA also offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster. The deadline for applying for economic injury loans is Nov. 20.
• Disaster loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate. Homeowners and renters are eligible for up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property.
Interest rates can be as low as 3 percent for businesses, 2 percent for private nonprofit organizations and 1.25 percent for homeowners and renters with terms up to 30 years. Loan amounts and terms are set by SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial condition.