FSA Loans Available For Farmers with Weather Losses

FSA Loans Available For Farmers with Weather Losses

Farmers who've suffered forage or other crop losses or property damage to farm buildings from flooding and severe storms this summer may be eligible for a low interest loan from USDA's Farm Service Agency.

FAQ: There's been extensive damage to farm buildings this summer in some areas of Iowa due to flooding and other severe weather. Does USDA's Farm Service Agency have a low-interest loan program available?

Answer: Provided by Brian Gossling, farm loan program director with USDA's Farm Service Agency in Iowa. He's located at the FSA state office in Des Moines.

Yes, farm operators who this year have suffered major forage or other crop production losses and/or physical losses such as damage to buildings caused by severe storms, flooding and tornadoes may be eligible for a Farm Service Agency (FSA) Emergency Loan. In addition, FSA has other loan programs that can assist farm operations recover from natural disasters.

Applications for assistance should be completed at local FSA offices in your county. FSA may make emergency loans to eligible family farmers which will enable them to return to their normal operations if they sustained qualifying losses resulting from natural disasters.

Q: How do you qualify for such a loan?

A: Physical loss Emergency loans may be made to eligible farmers to enable them to repair or replace damaged or destroyed physical property essential to the success of the farming operation. Examples of property commonly affected include essential farm buildings, fixtures to the real estate, livestock or loss to planted and unplanted crops. Physical loss loans for destroyed crops could include cost of cleaning debris, costs for replanting, seed, fertilizer and other expenses necessary to re-establish the crops.

Production Loss Emergency Loans generally are calculated after the crop has been harvested. Applicants with a qualifying loss may be eligible for an Emergency Loan to make up for lost income caused by the disaster. The interest rate for emergency loans is 3.75%. Repayment is generally scheduled for one to 20 years, depending on the available collateral and the use of loan funds.

The final date for making applications for FSA Emergency Loans is April 13, 2011. All people applying for credit will be given equal consideration.

If you have specific questions or need details regarding USDA farm programs, contact your local USDA Farm Service Agency office. You can also get news and information about DCP, ACRE and other USDA programs at www.fsa.usda.gov.

Two Iowa State University Extension Web sites have farm program information and analysis. They are ISU's Ag Decision Maker site at www.extension.iastate.edu/agdm and ISU Extension Specialist Steve Johnson's site at www.extension.iastate.edu/polk/farmmanagement.htm.

And be sure to read the regular column "Frequently Asked Questions about the Farm Program" that appears in each issue of Wallaces Farmer magazine and at www.WallacesFarmer.com

TAGS: USDA
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