SEVIERVILLE, Tenn.-- Survivors who were referred to the U.S. Small Business Administration for assistance after the Sevier County wildfires have until Feb. 13 to complete and submit SBA’s loan application.
Some survivors who registered with FEMA for disaster assistance were contacted by the SBA with information on the agency’s low-interest disaster loans as well as instructions on how to complete the loan application.
SBA disaster loans are available to businesses of all sizes, most private nonprofit organizations, homeowners and renters to cover uninsured losses from the disaster. Interest rates are as low as 3.125 percent for businesses, 2.5 percent for private nonprofit organizations and 1.5 percent for homeowners and renters. Loan terms can be up to 30 years, and there is no income limit to apply.
Federal disaster assistance is available to eligible individuals and households and those who were working in or visiting Sevier County and were affected by the Nov. 28-Dec. 9 wildfires.
The disaster declaration covers Sevier County, which is eligible for both PHYSICAL and ECONOMIC INJURY disaster loans from the SBA. Small businesses and most private nonprofit organizations in the following adjacent counties are eligible to apply only for SBA economic injury disaster loans: Blount, Cocke, Jefferson and Knox in Tennessee; and Haywood and Swain counties in North Carolina.
The filing deadline to submit SBA loan applications for physical property damage is Monday, Feb. 13. The deadline for businesses to submit a loan application for economic injury is Friday, Sept. 15.
SBA loan applications should be submitted even as disaster survivors await an insurance settlement. If approved, the loan amount may be reduced by the settlement. SBA loans are for losses not covered by insurance.
Businesses may borrow up to $2 million for any combination of property damage or economic injury. SBA offers low-interest working capital loans—called economic injury disaster loans—to small businesses and most private nonprofit organizations. Homeowners may borrow up to $200,000 from SBA to repair or replace their primary residence. Homeowners and renters may borrow up to $40,000 to repair or replace their personal property, including an automobile.
Survivors may apply online using the electronic loan application via SBA’s secure website at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
Disaster loan information and application forms are also available from SBA’s customer service center by calling 800-659-2955 or emailing email@example.com. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call 800-877-8339. For more disaster assistance information or to download applications, visit sba.gov/disaster.
Completed loan applications can also be mailed to:
U.S. Small Business Administration
Processing and Disbursement Center
14925 Kingsport Rd.
Fort Worth, TX 76155
Wildfire survivors also have until Feb. 13 to register with FEMA for disaster assistance.
Here’s how to apply:
Online at DisasterAssistance.gov (also in Spanish).
Download the FEMA mobile app (also in Spanish).
Call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 (FEMA). Persons who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585.
Toll-free numbers are open daily from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Help is available in most languages.