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Stimulus Rumor: Grants for Small Businesses

At the Small Business Development Center, we have been getting a lot of inquiries about free money for people who want to start a business or are in small business debt. Take our word for it, there are no small business grants (and there never have been).

There is a pervasive rumor being spread nation-wide that the economic stimulus program (actually known as ARRA: the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009) includes handouts to small businesses in the form of grants.  THIS IS SIMPLY NOT TRUE. While there appears to be additional funding for bank sponsored  U.S. Small Business Administration loans, you must have cash to inject in the project yourself, demonstrate good personal credit, have collateral to pledge against the loan, and show the capability to pay back the loan as well (common sense stuff).

Currently few if any local banks will consider a start up business for funding. That may change, but not in the immediate future.

If there really was FREE money, why would I not quit my job here and start a business? 

So, if you are still reading this and want to know what is truly happening. Visit the official ARRA site, as well as the official Florida Recovery site

What is available through the Stimulus:

While there are no grants for small businesses, there are a number of excellent tax incentives and opportunities for getting loans for your business. Details can be found on the U.S. Small Business Administration website for the recovery:

Please also note that the perennial sages of free government money, Matthew Lesko and National Grants are not a wise investment. 

The only sure way to finance a business is to save, borrow and/or earn. 

To learn more, contact the Small Business Development Center at the University of North Florida. Our services are FREE to the Small Business Community.

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