Alternative Financing Solutions is a service of Easterseals Nebraska that provides low-interest loans for the purchase of assistive technology devices and services. We have three separate loan funds:
What is assistive technology?
Assistive technology is any device that helps a person with a disability maintain or increase independence or overcome a barrier to employment. Examples include, but are not limited to vehicles with modification, ramps, grab bars, widened doorways, hearing and vision aids, scooters, lift chairs, stair glides, or iPads or computers with special software.
What is an assistive technology service?
Any service that helps a person to select an appropriate assistive technology device as well as any services required to help train those using the device.
Who is eligible?
Anyone is eligible to apply for a loan for a person with a disability or aged individual who live in Nebraska and need assistive technology. Our loan programs can help people of all ages and income levels.
How does the Nebraska Alternative Financing Program make decisions about my application?
You must have determined the item(s) you wish to finance and the loan amount needed before submitting an application. When we receive your application and supporting documents, we will review it to ensure that it is complete. Once complete, we will submit it to our Loan Review Board for a decision. The Loan Review Board is made up of individuals with disabilities and community stakeholders who oversee the loan programs and review loan applications. The decision to extend a loan is based on several factors including, but are not limited to, debt-to-income ratio and credit history.
Note: Our Alternative Financing Programs cannot not reimburse for items already purchased.
How long will it take to process my loan application?
Once a complete application is received, you can expect a decision on your loan application within 1-2 weeks. Our Loan Review Board typically meets every Monday morning, but a complete application must be received several days before the meeting so the credit history can be checked and paperwork prepared. Loan applicants meeting “excellent” borrower criteria set forth by our Loan Review Board may receive a fast track approval which can be done at any time.
If approved, how will I get the loan closing documents and the money?
For any AFP or Telework loan approval, closing will take place in person at any First National Bank of Omaha location. For a Credit-Building Mini-Loan, closing will take place at the Omaha Easterseals Nebraska office or by mail. Once the closing paperwork is signed, you will receive a check made out to you and the vendor for the vendor to cash. If the item is computer or software related and the vendor you chose is online, the item may be purchased for you online and sent directly to your home.
How much can I borrow?
Depending on the program, our loan amounts range from $100 to $35,000. However, your ability to repay the loan will affect the amount you can borrow.
What is the interest rate?
The rate changes from time to time, so you should ask for the current interest rate when you apply for a loan. The interest rate for all our loan programs is based on the Wall Street Journal Prime Rate. As of early 2018, the borrower interest rate was 4% on loans between $1000 - $35,000 and Easterseals paid 0.5% in interest on the loan each month. For loan amounts between $100-$999, the borrower interest rate was 4.5%.
How much time will I have to pay off the loan?
Repayment terms vary based on expected useful life of the assistive technology device, debt-to-income ratio, and credit history. Term length is decided by the Loan Review Board at the time of application.
What happens if I have trouble repaying my loan?
Contact Easterseals Nebraska if you know you are going to have trouble making your monthly payment. We can try to help you work through your situation or refer you to consumer credit counseling services for more in-depth assistance.
What happens if I default (stop repaying my loan)?
If you don’t repay your loan, it will have a negative effect on your credit score. Your non-payment will be listed on your credit report for at least seven years and will make it difficult for you to qualify for other loans. In addition, your loan may be sent to a collection agency.
How do I get an application or more information?
NEW - Download the application packet below! Please note the forms are not fillable, so you will have to print them and fax/mail them back to us. Please do not submit the application until you have completed all the steps outlined on the first page, including determing how much you can afford in a monthly payment, identifying the specific item you want to purchase with a price quote, and exploring other funding resources. Contact our Loan Program Coordinator for assistance with any of these tasks! You can also contact Easterseals Nebraska at 402-930-4106 or 800-650-9880 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to have paper copy of the application mailed to you.
For more information about other possible funding sources, contact Assistive Technology Partnership (ATP) at 402-471-1368 / 888-806-6287 or click here to visit their website!.