Grants for Starting a Business

How do government grants for starting a business work and who can apply for one?

Government grants are available in every state and as long as certain guidelines are met, anyone can apply. Grants are designed to enhance or improve the lives of individuals or certain underprivileged groups within our communities. People that belong to a minority, research and development projects, innovative technologies, advancements in the medical or education fields as well as programs for the disabled generally have more grant opportunities available to them. It is also advantageous to be a nonprofit business when looking for government grants.

Government small business grants are never meant to be used in a way that would benefit a government department or agency in any way. Their purpose is to encourage the growth of small business and to provide a needed service or research project in a particular neighborhood, community or state. Each grant proposal will outline a specific problem that the government has identified along with an intended outcome.

Whether you are looking to start a new business or expand an existing one, the first and most important thing to do is to develop a business plan. This will focus the purpose of the business and will enable you to determine what is needed in the way of expertise and funding. Understanding the kind and amount of funding you will need is crucial as each grant proposal will specify the amount of funds to be awarded. Most new businesses require more than once funding source and this information will need to be clearly outlined in your business plan. Even if you have never written a business plan, there is no need to pay hundreds of dollars to have one completed as there is an abundance of free professional help including user-friendly templates on the internet that one can follow.

In the beginning, the world of grants may seem extremely confusing and impossible to find ones that fit into your own business category. This is largely due to the fact that although grants for starting a business is a federal government initiative, the responsibility of dispersal and administration is filtered down to state and local government departments and agencies. The key to focusing your search lies in knowing were to look for grants and understanding how to zone in on the ones that are relevant to your business.

Often once people have spent some time in researching grant opportunities, they realize that they would fare better if they were to receive some additional training. The government does make training grants for starting a business available, especially if an individual is a member of a minority group.

The task of finding small business grants for starting a business will always involve a commitment of time however; the result when you are successful is money for your business that never has to be paid back. Stay focused and be persistent by applying for as many grants as you are eligible for. It is also very important to view any rejections you may receive as opportunities to strengthen your next application. Be sure to find out from the granting agency the reasons your submission was rejected and learn from the experience.

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