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Starting a Business


  • Submitted on 25 January 2012

    BusinessHow your company should be structured is one of the first decisions you will have to make as a business owner? This decision is important, because the type of business you create determines the types of applications you’ll need to submit. You should also research liability implications for personal investments you make into your business, as well as the taxes you will need to pay.

    It’s important to understand each business type and select the one that is best suited for your situation and objectives. Keep in mind that you may need to contact several federal agencies, as well as your state business entity registration office. In making a choice, you will want to take into account the following:

  • Submitted on 09 January 2012

    Business LoansIf you’re starting a business that requires significant financial investment up front, finding a source of funding can be a challenge, especially since the average cost of starting a business is $30,000. This is particularly true for young entrepreneurs who lack a strong credit history or don’t want the hassle of dealing with banks or private lenders.

    Once these startup entrepreneurs are done considering their options, it’s not unusual for them to ask friends or family for startup cash. After all, unlike private investors or banks, these people know and trust you. It’s possible they can get you quicker access to cash with fewer flaming hoops to jump through.  On the flipside, if your business fails or you are tardy in repaying the money, you may be headed for some conflict with the aforementioned family and friends.

  • Submitted on 09 January 2012

    Native American entrepreneurs have a new tool to help determine if they’re ready for business ownership and to help them get started.  Native American Small Business Primer: Strategies for Success is a free, self-paced online business course developed for Native American business owners.  The course provides an overview of basic business principles and  makes them aware of the programs and services available from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

    “Native American Small Business Primer: Strategies for Success will enhance the agency’s effort to provide important resources for emerging Native American entrepreneurs,” said SBA Administrator Karen Mills.  “Our ultimate goal is to help create jobs and stimulate economic and business development in our Native American communities. This course is an essential business development tool for the entrepreneur’s toolbox.”

    The new online course: emphasizes business planning and market research as essential steps to take before going into business; informs Native American entrepreneurs about the legal aspects of starting a business, including the type of ownership (legal structure) and licensing; and provides key information on seed money for starting up, raising capital, and borrowing money.  In addition, there is a section on how to estimate business start-up costs that can help assess the financial needs of going into business.

  • Submitted on 04 January 2012

    Record KeepingEveryone in business must keep records.  Keeping good records is very important to your business.  Good records will help you do the following:

    • Monitor the progress of your business
    • Prepare your financial statements
    • Identify source of receipts
    • Keep track of deductible expenses
    • Prepare your tax returns
    • Support items reported on tax returns

    Monitor the progress of your business

    You need good records to monitor the progress of your business. Records can show whether your business is improving, which items are selling, or what changes you need to make.  Good records can increase the likelihood of business success.

  • Submitted on 06 December 2011

    Employee Rights Under the NLRA PosterAs of January 31, 2012, most private sector employers are required to post a notice advising employees of their rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The notice should be posted in a conspicuous place, where other notifications of workplace rights and employer rules and policies are posted. Employers also should publish a link to the notice on an internal or external website if other personnel policies or workplace notices are posted there.

    For further information about the posting, including a detailed discussion of which employers are covered by the NLRA, and what to do if a substantial share of the workplace speaks a language other than English, please see the National Labor Relations Board Frequently Asked Questions. For additional languages visit the National Labor Relations Board website.

    You may download and print the notice using the links below. You may also fill out this form or call 202-273-0064 and copies will be mailed free of charge.

  • Submitted on 25 November 2011

    Dollars and CalculatorsHow much does it cost to start your own business?

    Of course, the answer depends on your business model and your chosen industry. However, a useful estimate based on a 2009 study conducted by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation  puts the average cost of starting a new business from scratch at just over $30,000.

    Many small businesses, particularly freelance, online and home-based businesses come in a lot lower than this, often needing only a few thousand to get started.

    But averages aside, what can you do to calculate your specific startup costs? Read on.

    Understand the Types of Costs a Startup Will Incur

    Before you do any estimating it’s important to understand how startup costs are categorized. All startup costs (meaning the period before you start generating income) include two kinds of spending: expenses and assets.

  • Submitted on 18 November 2011

    Apps for EntrepreneursUpdated on December 20, 2011 - SBA Names Winners in Small Business Mobile Apps Challenge

    For most entrepreneurs and small businesses, the Federal government has useful programs and services, but it can be hard to identify, engage and navigate Federal websites.  Often, small businesses do not know that the Federal government already offers a program that they would find useful.  Entrepreneurs and small businesses need better tools to navigate the Federal government’s vast resources – including programs, services, and procurement opportunities.  The goal of the Apps for Entrepreneurs is to give small businesses and entrepreneurs those better tools through this challenge format.

    How to Enter

    To enter, participants should develop an innovative application designed for the Web, a personal computer, a mobile handheld device, console, or any platform broadly accessible on the open internet that utilizes data which is freely available on Federal government websites.

  • Submitted on 10 November 2011

    Small businesses in emerging industries – like clean energy – have cutting-edge ideas that are strengthening our country and changing the world. Today, we’re helping them continue to do just that in two major ways.

    First, unlike larger firms, many small firms don’t have the staff or time to search for all of the federal opportunities that can help them grow and create jobs.

    We’re pleased to announce that they’ve got a new tool with green.sba.gov, where they can find all federal opportunities in a single location.

  • Submitted on 04 November 2011

    President Obama proclaimed that this November is National Entrepreneurship Month, a time when “we celebrate the remarkable and everyday successes of our entrepreneurs and innovators, and we reaffirm our commitment to ensuring our economy remains the engine and the envy of the world.”

  • Submitted on 04 November 2011

    The White House and the U.S. Small Business Administration announced the launch of the Young Entrepreneur Series (YES), which will connect young and aspiring entrepreneurs with SBA officials, local business advisors and resources to help them start or grow their own small business.

    “For our economy to thrive in the 21st century, we must set about creating the next generation of entrepreneurs,” said SBA Deputy Administrator Marie Johns.  “Young Americans need to know that starting a business is a viable alternative to going to work for somebody else.  There is a clear and urgent need to create more jobs for young Americans, and encouraging business ownership is an important way to meet that goal.”

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