If your business idea has goals that can be aligned to those set up by certain government departments, it might be an excellent idea to try and get financed through a government grant.
A lot of entrepreneurs look to get a government grant so they can start their business – billions of dollars are available in total from such grants. Of course, it is important that you understand that the government only offers grants for projects which align with their departments’ goals, such as creating X jobs in a certain sector or increasing health in a certain community. If your business happens to perform services that are useful for the government, you could potentially receive a multi-million dollar investment to begin.
In order to get a grant, you need to thoroughly understand the service your business idea could provide for the community. A grant will be allocated because of the need that your business is able to fill, so you need to understand that need as well, and make sure that you do your research in order to apply for a certain grant program. For instance, you may have a business which provides education in a discipline that is very much needed, or maybe provide important medical services to an area that is under-served – or perhaps it aims to re-purpose or renovate certain government-owned buildings. All of these are examples of services which would be considered helpful to the community in general, and thus potentially worthy of government funding.
If you want to look into available grants and find out which ones could apply to the services your business is going to offer, log into grants.gov – the government’s official grants website. For instance, if your business aims to educate customers regarding the effectiveness of solar cells at reducing energy usage, you should research grants funded through the Department of Education and the Department of Energy.
In order to see whether a grant applies to one of the activities your business engages in, read the grant’s summary and review the type of organization which is allowed to apply for said grant. A lot of grants are specifically for non-profits, although some will allow for-profit companies to apply – or even individuals, in certain cases.
Once you find a match, write the grant number down along with a brief description of the grant and the activities it seeks to fund. Build a list which each grant which could apply to your business in some way, and make sure to note the closing date and the grant amount, so you understand how much you can expect from it and what’s the last day you could send your application. Last but not least, remember to write down contact information for the grants you might apply from.
At each grant’s description page will be a link which can take you to an online application directly. Certain grants will allow you to submit your application online, while others will require that you fax or mail additional information with the application. If you need more info then check out USGrants.org
Most grant applications are quite straightforward. However, it’s still a good idea to contact offices associated with the government grant opportunities you’re interested in, so you can get a better understanding on what they’re looking for and what sort of application they want to see. This way, once you send your application in, you could send it to a specific person’s attention.