Local SBA office closes Thursday

Published 4:49 am Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Washington Parish residents affected by the late December flooding have just a few more days to apply locally for a potential damages-covering loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

The SBA recently opened a Disaster Loan Outreach Center at the Bogalusa Branch Library, located at 304 Ave. F. However, the center will close Thursday, at 4:30 p.m.

It will be open from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. on each of the final two days. Walk-ins are welcome, and no previous appointment is necessary.

Businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets. SBA can also lend additional funds to businesses and homeowners to help with the cost of improvements to protect, prevent or minimize the same type of disaster damage from occurring in the future.

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

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 3.74 percent for businesses, 2.75 percent for private nonprofit organizations and 2 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.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at 1-800-659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing may call 1-800-877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to “U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.”

The deadline to apply for property damage is March 25. The deadline to apply for economic injury is Oct. 23.

Applicants must have a credit history acceptable to the SBA, must show the ability to repay all loans, and must have collateral. Collateral is required for physical loss loans over $25,000 and all EIDL loans over $25,000. SBA takes real estate as collateral when it is available. SBA will not decline a loan for lack of collateral, but requires applicants to pledge what is available.