A total of 19 disaster loan applications on Saipan have been approved by the U.S. Small Business Administration as of yesterday, bringing the amount of approved loans to more than a million dollars.
Out of 19, two are businesses and their approved loans amount to $550,700, according to U.S. SBA public information officer William Koontz.
The 17 homes that got approval from SBA were able to loan $651,000, bringing the grand total of approved loans to $1,201,700.
Residents and business owners seeking assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency may be referred to SBA depending on their household income.
“If you’ve been through the typhoon and you don’t have insurance, then perhaps now your only option is disaster loan to get back in business,” Koontz said in a recent interview.
Koontz said their goal is to have loan applications approved within 21 days but it also depends on the situation.
“Typically you will get a loan approval in a week or two. A business owner might take longer,” Koontz said.
SBA said that even if an individual or a business feel that they cannot afford a loan, it is better that they apply anyway because if they are found ineligible for SBA, they are automatically referred back to FEMA to be considered for FEMA’s Other Needs Assistance grant program.
“Apply for an SBA loan to start the process,” Koontz said. “If you decide to not apply to SBA, you are saying, ‘I don’t want any further assistance from the U.S. government programs.’”
The deadline to apply for a low-interest SBA disaster loan is Oct. 5. SBA said once you apply, you can later withdraw your request. If you do, they will offer you six months to change your mind and resume the loan process.
SBA added that once an applicant is approved, there is no obligation to use the loan or you may use just a portion of the amount approved.