It can be incredibly stressful to start your own business; particularly if your budget is running low as you get ready to launch. The last thing you want is to get information which raises your hopes, only to dash them upon discovering that this information was inaccurate.
There are a lot of young entrepreneurs who are under the impression that they can get money from the government to start up their business. This is a misconception; no one (except maybe your parents) will give you money no strings attached – so don’t be taken in by anyone who promises you this. There are a lot of people out there who will tell you that they can do this, but be careful – you’re starting a business to make money, not pay it out to these unscrupulous operators.
If you’re an entrepreneur trying to get your business off the ground and your hope is that the government will help finance your venture, you need to know the facts:
1 – Small business other than non-profits are rarely able to get government financing; these funds are generally set aside for non-profits and other businesses which provide jobs in economically disadvantaged areas.
2 – Businesses which are engaged in new technology research and development can often get financing. However, if you are opening a Laundromat, you will not be getting a government grant to do so. These funds are typically reserved for the best and brightest in the scientific and engineering fields -research projects can receive grants of up to $100,000 and an additional $1 million for production
stemming from this research.
3 – Even businesses which are qualified to receive these grants cannot get them simply for the asking at any time. There are specific application processes for these grants which are time sensitive. If you miss the application deadline, you may have to wait until the next year or until a call for applications is announced.
4 – There is some hope of receiving government funding, but keep in mind that not all of this money is in the form of grants. There are small business loans which can be either a traditional interest bearing loan or matching grants with 25% of the cost being granted – the other 75% must be raised by your business. You will generally have to submit detailed reports of your business operations for tracking purposes when receiving these grants.
There are business grants on the local, state and federal levels – a good business plan can help your business to secure one of these loans. Your business plan should include a detailed description of how you will produce your product; provide your service as well as how you will market your business, among other things.
Your business plan will also give you a clearer picture of the viability of your business. After looking it over, you can decide if your plan needs some revamping – or if it’s time to go back to the drawing board altogether. This can save you a lot of time when you start up your business.
With the right information, your business will have a much better chance of securing financing – and of course, being successful overall.