SBA loan could help storm victims with repairs

MADISON, AL (WAFF) - There's still time for storm victims to apply for federal disaster aid.  The U.S. Small Business Administration is encouraging people to apply for a low-interest, long-term disaster loan to help pay for repairs or even relocation.

Despite the name, you don't have to be a small business to apply. A spokesman said most people who are applying are individuals, like World War II and Korean War veteran Horace Jackson, Sr.

"The process was very fast and efficient," Jackson said.

With the help of repairmen, Jackson's Madison County home is already starting to look the way it did before April 27th's tornadoes.

"My whole back of the house and my patio and everything were destroyed," he said. "We're in the process of repairing that right now."

What insurance isn't covering, Jackson hopes will be covered by a SBA loan.

"Probably 80 percent of the people we help here in Alabama are going to be individuals, meaning that they're going to be renters or homeowners," said Carl Sherrill, an SBA spokesman.

The low-interest disaster loans have terms of up to 30 years. Homeowners can borrow up to $200,000, up to $40,000 for personal property, like clothing, furniture and automobiles, and up to $2 million for businesses and non-profits.

"We're going to send a loss verifier to your home, to your business, to determine what it's going to cost for you to be back to where you were the day before the disaster," Sherrill said.

Sherrill said the agency will let you know within ten days after applying whether you qualify. He strongly encourages anyone who had any type of losses as a result of the storms to apply because it may open up other types of aid.

"Further assistance in the form of grants from FEMA, further assistance from some of the volunteers that are here," he said.

The deadline to apply is June 27th. In Madison County, you can apply in person Monday through Saturday from 7:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. at the Monrovia Church of Christ at 595 Nance Road in Madison. You can also apply online at the SBA Web site.

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