Types Of Grants Available To Small Businesses
Grants of many types are available to small business owners and grouped into four main categories. Your eligibility for these grants will depend on your products and services, how you own your business, and your business’s mission.
The four types of grants available to business owners are:
Rural Energy For America Program
This grant program, run by the Department of Agriculture, centers on small businesses in eligible rural areas looking to purchase, construct, or install renewable energy systems or energy efficiency improvement technologies. You can partner one of these federal business grants with a USDA loan guaranty as well, and together theyâll back up to 75% of your eligible project costs.
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Small Business Grants: 21 Options To Apply For Free Funds For Your Business
No matter what kind of small business you own, there are grants available to help your business grow. Read on for details on 21 grant options and databases.
Small business grants offer funds to grow your business in a variety of ways. In many cases, you can use grants for things like operations, marketing, or expanding your team. Finding out which ones you may be eligible for is crucial so that you can start applying.
In this article, we’ll cover the basics of grants and give you tips about how to score more of them.
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Pause On Commercial Evictions
The Government of Ontario is temporarily stopping or reversing evictions of commercial tenants and protecting them from being locked out or having their assets seized during COVID-19. This applies to businesses that were eligible for the previous Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance for small businesses program or who have been approved for the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy .
Other Government Funding Options For Your Business
These federal and state programs can also help finance your business:
Small Business Investment Company Program The SBA partners with private investment funds licensed as SBICs to provide growth capital to small businesses. Find out if SBIC financing is right for your business.
Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs The SBIR/STTR programs are competitive and awards-based. They encourage small businesses to pursue federal research or research and development projects. While exploring their technological potential, businesses can profit from commercialization. Learn how to apply.
State and Local Business Assistance Find out about state and local business financial assistance where you live. This includes financing for business expansion, state credit initiatives, and more.
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Government Grants For Small Businesses In 2022
Daymond John, renowned Shark Tank investor, once said, No matter what business youre in, business is business and financing and money are critical.
Business financing is often a sore point for small business owners because it is difficult to acquire. Get a loan and pay high interest rates. Get an investor and reduce your equity. The gains of sourcing financing can be lost when the stakes are so high.
Thankfully, small business grants provide a solution that removes the risks associated with high interest rates and lost equity.
Grants Loans And Programs To Benefit Your Small Business
When you know where to look, help for your small business is there for the taking.
There are many grant programs available to small businesses, depending on a variety of qualifying factors.
Times are tough for small business, but help is available, from both the governmentfederal, state or localand the private sector. It may be in the form of a grant, a loan or a leg up competing in a difficult business environment. Heres a breakdown to help you sort through whats available.
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Where To Find Government Grants For New Businesses
Government grants are available for UK businesses, as well as via the Welsh and Northern Ireland Assemblies, and from the Scottish Parliament. If youre starting a UK business, begin with the useful Business Finance Support Finder. The Welsh government has access to a similar list of grants at its Business Grants website. Enterprise Ireland has access to funding for small businesses up to larger enterprises, while the Scottish governments Funding Opportunities website provides access to over 600 grants and funding options.
Business Grants Vs Business Loans
As discussed above, with a grant you do not have to repay the funds. However, if you have just launched your business or youre in the early startup phase, you may not be eligible for many grants. Another potential limitation with grants is that many grants have strict requirements concerning the grant application process and the grant proposal. If your application or proposal doesnt meet the specific requirements mandated by the agency, your request will be rejected.
If youre just starting out in business and its unlikely that you will be awarded a grant, you may want to consider finding a loan provider.
One advantage of a business loan is that you can secure the capital you need to meet your needs, whereas with a grant, the amounts are fixed and may not sufficiently meet your companys needs. Another advantage is that some lenders may have more relaxed requirements, such as a lower minimum monthly income or lower minimum time in business.
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Shuttered Venue Operators Grants
The Shuttered Venue Operator Grant program has closed, but the SBA says that it will open the program for supplemental SVOGs for 50% of the original award amount, capped at a total of $10 million.
Those eligible businesses include:
- Live performing arts organization operators
- Relevant museum operators, zoos and aquariums who meet specific criteria
- Motion picture theater operators, or
- Talent representatives
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Tax Requirements To Start A Business
Its important for your business to comply with federal, state, and local tax laws.
Make sure to meet all federal tax requirements for starting a business. Follow this checklist from the IRS.
Each state has additional tax rules when you start and operate a business. Get information on state-level requirements.
Learn more about business taxes, including energy tax incentives that can help you save money.
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What Is A Startup Small Business Grant
A startup small business grant is monetary funding from the government or an organization that is given in order to help small companies and nonprofits succeed in building and growing their business. Unlike loans, you dont have to pay this money back. Theres no collateral that youre required to put up, and you wont need to pay fees or interest. The best part about grants is that the money is yours to keep, and youll never have to pay it back after using it for your startup.
While grant money is awarded to you, it may come with rules that dictate how you can spend it. For example, lets say you apply for a grant that is to be used to advance the technology in your business so that you and your team can work faster and produce more of your product. If you were to use that money to pay your team instead of to buy new technology and equipment, you may have to pay the funds back. You may be guilty of fraud, too, which could cause legal issues for you and your business.
If you do receive a small business startup grant, its imperative that you meet the funders accounting and reporting guidelines and that you spend the money on what the grant covers and nothing else.
What Are Small Business Grants And Who Is Eligible To Receive One
Small business grants are amounts of seed money given to entrepreneurs to build upon their business. Grant money is considered gifted,” and you are not required to pay it back. Sometimes, you may need to pay taxes on the amounts received, so please consider this and talk to a tax professional.
To secure a grant, you may have to do things like:
- Meet eligibility requirements
- Go through interviews
In exchange, you could be awarded financial resources to build your brand, team, and operations.
Government entities or private businesses establish most grant programs because they want to help others succeed.
Tip: Search grant databases, such as GrantWatch, to find available grants in your industry. GrantWatch is an online hub for more than 26,000 grants in the United States and Canada in which you can browse various funding opportunities easily by filtering your specifications.
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Keep Tabs On Federal Contracting Opportunities
Once you have successfully registered your business at SAM.gov, you should now learn how to scout for contract opportunities. Fortunately, you dont have to search high and low to explore the latest contract opportunitiesyou can do it at SAM.gov!
Back then, the federal government used the Federal Business Opportunities Website to publish contract opportunities. But the government has integrated the functionalities of this website into the SAM.gov website for a more streamlined experience.
Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit
The CRCB provides $500 per week for up to 26 weeks per household for workers:
- unable to work for at least 50% of the week because they must care for a child under the age of 12 or family member because schools, day-cares or care facilities are closed due to COVID-19
- because the child or family member is sick and/or required to quarantine or is at high risk of serious health implications because of COVID-19.
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How Were Already Helping Canadians With The Cost Of Living
Prior to the 2022 Fall Economic Statement, this year, Canadians have already been receiving significant new support through the governments Affordability Plan.This includes:
A more generous Canada Workers Benefit available to more low-income Canadians than before to support an estimated three million low-income or minimum wage workers this year. A couple will receive up to $2,461, and single workers will receive up to $1,428 in CWB for 2022. Most recipients first received additional CWB support through their 2021 tax refund.
Cutting child care fees by an average of 50 per cent by the end of this year for families across Canada with children in regulated child care, and making more child care spaces available in Quebec.
Increasing the Old Age Security pension by 10 per cent for seniors 75 years and older, which began in July 2022, to provide more than $800 in new support to full pensioners over the first year, and increase benefits for more than three million seniors.
Important benefits being indexed to inflation, including the Canada Child Benefit, the Canada Pension Plan, OAS, and the Guaranteed Income Supplement.
More support for students by doubling the Canada Student Grant to provide up to $6,000 per year until July 2023.
American Association Of University Women
The American Association of University Women not only offers academic and research grants but also grants for career development for women looking to change careers or reenter the workforce.
- Award amount: $2,000$20,000
- How to apply: Visit the website for a timeline and eligibility requirements.
In addition to grants for individual career betterment, the AAUW also grants funds for projects that encourage and jump-start young girls’ careers in technical fields.
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Local Chamber Of Commerce
Start by researching grants within your communityyour local Chamber of Commerce is a great place to start.
- Award amount: Varies
- How to apply: Reach out to your local Chamber of Commerce for information.
Although some grants have stipulations like industry, business type, size, and location, your local Chamber of Commerce should be able to connect you with grants that fit your situation. Their team can also provide your small business funding services, tips, and resources.
Federal Small Business Grants
In addition to the SBA, there are a number of small business grants available from other federal agencies. If youre new to searching federal agencies for grants, Grants.gov could be a good starting place. Keep in mind, its a vast database that might be difficult to navigate, especially those looking for highly specific grants.
Below are some departments and agencies of the federal government that offer specific grants for small businesses.
Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer
U.S. Department of Agriculture
USDA offers quite a few grants to state and local governments that can filter down to small business owners in rural areas. Direct grants may be available to farmers markets or roadside stand businesses thats in addition to direct low-interest government loans to new and family-owned farms.
U.S. Department of Energy
The DOE works closely with the SBIR and STTR programs to fund energy research and development at small businesses. There are specific needs those businesses must meet and its a competitive field, but there is grant money if you fall into this category.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
National Institutes of Health
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Canada’s Regional Development Agencies:
If you are a tourism operator or small- or medium- sized business or organization impacted by the sudden shifts in the economy and need pressing assistance, the RDAs could assist you with:
- Access to federal funding to help you stay in business.
- Advice and pathfinding to other available federal programs and services.
Small Business Administration Loans
As a small-business owner, you may qualify for a loan through the U.S. Small Business Administration . The SBA guarantees loans through banks, called 7 loans, for eligible small businesses to a maximum of $5 million. The average 7 loan is smaller in 2015, it was $371,628.
The SBA guarantees up to 85 percent of loans up to $150,000. Larger loans can be guaranteed up to 75 percent. Loans below $150,000 have no fees both fixed and variable interest rates, which are based on the current prime rate, are available.
What Are Small Business Grants
A small business grant is a predetermined sum of money that government agencies and/or private entities give to small businesses. It can loosely be called free money. Its important to note, however, that nothing in life is truly free. Small business grants are filled with caveats that specify how the money should be spent. Additionally, a lot of work goes into creating grant proposals and meeting the requirements for winning the grant.
Us Department Of Agriculture Grants
USDA grants focus on agricultural development in rural areas. Some of the government grants offered include:
- Rural Economic Development Loan & Grant Program
- Rural Energy for America Program Renewable Energy Systems & Energy Efficiency Improvement Guaranteed Loans & Grants
- Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program
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Property Tax & Energy Bill Rebates
Businesses struggling to pay their energy bills as a result of COVID-19 may also be eligible for the COVID-19 Energy Assistance Program for Small Business , which you can apply to through your utility provider.
Starting in January 2021, available credit amounts will increase and more businesses will be eligible to access funding. Customers may be eligible for up to $1500 in support towards their electricity and natural gas bills.
Make Sure Your Business Aligns With The Organizations Mission
Organizations that provide small business grants do so in the hopes of achieving a specific goal they care deeply about. Ask yourself how your business model helps contribute to achieving this goal. If the answer is hard to parse, you might want to consider applying for grants with another organization.
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How To Apply For A Small Business Grant
Work smart AND hard. Instead of filling out an individual grant application, do what every job applicant does and create a resume for your business that outlines your answers to the common questions business grant-givers ask of their applicants. While grants are technically free money, that doesnt mean they come without hard work on your part.
Some applications will vary based on whats required. For example, a local government grant will likely require an explanation of how your businesss growth and development will benefit local commerce directly, while a grant from a private company like FedEx may require a persuasive video.
Here are a few common details you may need to provide when applying for a business grant: