Grant money for starting a business

Grant Money for Starting a Business

Planning to start a business but no capital to get things started? No problem. One reliable source of funding for starting a business is grant money.

Unlike a loan, grant money for starting a business does not require you to pay back the amount. In fact, thats the reason why many people refer to grant money as free money because it is, technically, free, though there may be obligations and sanctions imposed.

But grant money for starting a business is few and far between. In fact, when it comes to federally funded grant money for starting a business, the only reliable source you have is the CFDA or the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance at The site lists all the federally funded grant programs available for students, entrepreneurs, and other enterprising individuals.

A search through the Catalog will lead you to only two types of grant money for starting a business: one for rural businesses and one for minority business enterprises. And even for these, there are certain qualifications and requirements that you must comply with.

Rural business opportunity Grants

The Department of Agricultures Rural Business-Cooperative Service offers rural business opportunity grants on a project basis to promote sustainable economic development in rural communities with exception needs. Since the grant program gives a strong emphasis on helping existing businesses grow, eligible applications for the grant money for starting a business are public entities and nonprofit corporations that may in turn award money to the residents they serve.

Other eligible applicants for the grant money for starting a business include Indian tribes on Federal or State reservations or other Federally recognized tribal groups, and cooperatives with members that are primarily rural residents and that conduct activities for the mutual benefit of the members.

The Department of Agriculture imposes uses and use restrictions for the grant money. The funds may only be used to assist in the economic development of rural areas. You, as a grantee, can achieve this by providing technical assistance, training, and planning for business and economic development.

To apply, here are the credentials and documentations you need:

* Evidence of legal capacity
* Evidence of financial strength and expertise in activities, such as proposed in the application, sufficient to ensure accomplishment of the activities and objectives described in the application

Minority business opportunity Committee (MBOC)

The other grant money for starting a business offered at CFDA is the MBOC, run by the Minority Business Development Agency under the Department of Commerce. The purpose of the grant is to foster new minority business enterprises and maintaining and strengthening existing firms to increase their opportunities to participate and receive the benefits of our economic system.

Applications eligible for this program for grant money for starting a business are Federal, State or local government entities or quasi governmental entities, American Indian Tribes, colleges, universities, nonprofit organizations, and for project organizations.

Competitive awards for the MBOC grant money for starting a business are made based on a panel evaluation of the applications. This evaluation includes such factors as capability and experience of staff assigned to the project; techniques and methodology, creativity and innovation, resources and costs.


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