Credit: Carl Perry

Time still remains to get help to recover financially from the January rainstorms. Most recently, disaster loan outreach centers opened in Solvang and Orcutt for businesses, homeowners, and renters in need of Small Business Administration loans, but those deadlines are approaching quickly. These outlets open and close rapidly, so now is the time to get questions answered in person.

Grants to help pay for temporary housing and home repairs, childcare, and moving expenses are also available through the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The FEMA deadlines are coming up on March 16.

As well, the Santa Barbara Association of Realtors can provide up to $3,000 in mortgage, rent costs, and hotel bills for residents displaced by the flooding, through the nonprofit Realtors Relief Foundation. To apply, go to The deadline for this housing relief is April 30.

Specific information on other assistance can be found at the Independent’s Disaster Assistance button on our homepage, Written information is at and recorded information is at 800-621-3362.

March 16 is also the SBA deadline to apply for loans for property damage to primary residences up to $200,000 and for personal property up to $40,000. These carry zero interest for the first 12 months. After that, the interest rate depends on available credit, but generally runs between 2.3 and 4.6 percent for property damage to homes, rentals, and replacement of personal property.

October 16 is the deadline for SBA loans for business economic injury. The zero interest rate applies for the first year, then ranges from 3.3 to 6.6 percent for businesses, and 2.3 percent for nonprofits, according to the helpful people answering the Small Business Administration’s hotline: 800-659-2955.

The newly opened SBA outreach centers can currently be found at:

Solvang Superior Court
1745 Mission Drive
Tuesday-Friday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Saturday, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Spanish, ASL, and other translation services will be available onsite.

Orcutt Union School District
500 Dyer Street
Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Spanish, ASL, and other translation services will be available onsite.

Check the Independent’s Disaster Assistance button on our homepage,, for press release information on available funding help.


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