Advertiser Disclosure

Do I Qualify For A Startup Grant?

  • 46 comments
  • Updated on:
Advertiser Disclosure: Our unbiased reviews and content are supported in part by affiliate partnerships, and we adhere to strict guidelines to preserve editorial integrity.
Shannon Vissers

Shannon Vissers

Shannon is a writer and editor based in San Diego, CA. Shannon attended San Diego State University, graduating in 2005 with a BA in English. She is the former editor-in-chief of SteelOrbis, an online trade publication. Shannon has also published articles for LIVESTRONG.COM, eHow, Life'd, and other websites. She has been with Merchant Maverick since 2015, writing about POS software, small business loans, and financing for women entrepreneurs.
Shannon Vissers
Leave a comment

46 Comments

Responses are not provided or commissioned by the vendor or bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the vendor or bank advertiser. It is not the vendor or bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

    Carol Metz

    My husband and I started a factoring company in August, which is in the transportation industry. We are growing and are looking at expanding. I am looking for Grants for business expansion. Do you know of any that might be of help to us in this area?

      Shannon Vissers

      Hi Carol, I don’t know of any specific government grants you would qualify for, but you can check Grants.gov to see if anything might be available that fits your qualifications (though most of those grants are for nonprofit organizations and medical research). You might also check to see what’s available in your local area because sometimes local governments offer grants to incentivize business growth in their region. You are also probably eligible to apply for the FedEx Small Business Grant Contest.

        Alisha Barrett

        Im a single mother working two jobs and looking to open my own restaurant. How do I go about getting a grant or several grants?

          Shannon Vissers

          There aren’t many federal grants available for for-profit businesses. Of those limited grant offerings, most want to see an established business record. However, you can always check Grants.gov to see if there’s anything you might qualify for, and also check your local SBA Women’s Business Center to see if there are any grants or other financing opportunities you might qualify for in your area. There are also some nonprofits and private companies offering business grants for women which you can read about here: https://www.merchantmaverick.com/the-best-business-grants-for-women/

            T. J.

            Hi Shannon. I am looking to start my own welding business. A mobile service truck that can go to customers in the field. I am a welder and am currently working on my AWS certifications. I don’t know if this would help me with a grant, but I was incarcerated for 30 years and just got out July 2018. The banks won’t give me a loan because I haven’t been out for 2 years so I have no real credit history. In my area there are many farmers and loggers who inevitably need repairs and me being able to go to them stops the need for them to haul broken equipment to a shop. What do you think my chances are and how should I go about doing this?

              Shannon Vissers

              Hi there! Grants are more for nonprofits and businesses involved in research and development, such as medical research, green energy, stuff like that. I think it may be possible for you to get an online loan, as some of them don’t have very stringent credit score requirements. There are also a couple nonprofit online lenders like Kiva and Accion that you may qualify for. You might also want to visit your local SBA office to see what business financing resources they might have for you. Good luck!

                william yates

                I am looking for start-up funding for a 3d printing dental lab .(Wave of the future,,, milling will be obsolete).Need funding that will put company thru to the top of 3d printing. Need sustained funding to cover sales, equipment,facilities,staff salaries and continued research to make this a successful disrupter of old tech.I have lots of years in dental lab tech field.I am a master tech (25 years ).Now I need high tech funding to move the Industry to the digital age.

                  Jessica Dinsmore

                  Hi William!

                  That all sounds very exciting! I’d definitely suggest reaching out to the grant providers we’ve listed in the article for you, and even more specifically, the Innovators section may apply to you. Best of luck with seeing your vision to fruition!

                    Jason Gerwatowski

                    Great, informative and well constructed article. Most just point us to an affiliated company’s website and want money just for information. I have been searching for any way at all possible to help fund my startup in Residential/Light Industrial remodeling, improvements, maintenance and property management. With 25+ years in the field, I by far have the knowledge and experience to thrive in this venture. Unfortunately, I have 6 kids that must be taken care of before being able to save…and the saving has yet to be an option. In what ways would I be best vested in this opportunity for my family, employees and the Metro Detroit communities in which we serve to focus on and push for to help with the funding needed to legally operate as such an entity? I understand that all monies paid toward the start of and growth of the company are tax deductible. Would that also be true if the monies are from a loan or grant?

                      Shannon Vissers

                      Hi Jason! You may be able to find some local grant or loan opportunities for startups in Detroit, but I am not personally familiar with any of them. It’s definitely worth looking into though because I can imagine there are resources out there to encourage economic revitalization in the region. A local bank/credit union or nonprofit lender like Accion might also be able to offer you a low-interest loan — Accion has local loan offerings you can find on their website by entering your area code. In regard to taxes, loan proceeds are not considered income (as you will be paying this money back) so you will not pay any taxes on that money. Grant proceeds are taxable, however.

                        Virginia

                        I’m looking for money to start a fiber farm in Michigan. I would also like it to be a place where kids can come and get educated on how a small scale farm business runs.

                          Jessica Dinsmore

                          Hi Virginia,

                          I’d definitely suggest looking into the resources we’ve provided for Rural Businesses, Women-Owned businesses and/or Non-Profits listed within this post. It sounds like any of those might be beneficial to you. Good luck!

                            Stephanie Bee

                            Hi. I’m Stephanie.A single mother of 3 I graduated Beauty School Feb.14,2019. And. I was. Wanting to open a business to be able to sale. Hair products for natural hair. As well as. Bundles . hair accessories things in that nature. What grant should i Apply for..

                              Jessica Dinsmore

                              Hi Stephanie,

                              I’d suggest reading the portion of this post dedicated to Women-Owned Businesses.

                                Guernica

                                Any help with Grant to start up a discount tire in Alabama

                                  Shannon Vissers

                                  Hi there! I’ll just reiterate what I said in the article, because this info hasn’t changed:

                                  Very few private businesses are actually eligible for a business grant. Unless your business or startup is highly innovative and provides a demonstrable benefit to your community or the world at large, unfortunately, you are probably not grant-recipient material. Even if you are eligible for some grant money and you make it through the lengthy proposal process, you may only land a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.

                                  Furthermore, startup grants are particularly hard to come by, as grantees will generally want to see what kind of results you’ve achieved on other projects carried out by your organization. Don’t fall for government grant scams that will have you believe there are piles of free grant money out there for the taking—this is not the case at all.

                                  So, rather than hoping to be among the fortunate few who are granted free money, you might want to look into grant alternatives for your business.

                                  Startup grant alternatives include crowdfunding, P2P lending, online loans, equipment financing, and others.

                                    Erica Jones

                                    I am a single minority mother who is trying to start my own clothing line. Until I can reach my full potential I would like to start with creating graphic t shirts. What grants should I apply for?

                                      Shannon Vissers

                                      Hi Erica! I’d recommend applying for Amber Grants, which gives out one $2,000 grant to a female entrepreneur each month and one $25K grant each year. You should also apply to GirlBoss, which awards one $15K grant to a female-owned creative startup every six months. And here’s another article I wrote on business grants for women with a few other options. Best of luck to you!

                                        Steve boddie

                                        I am trying to start up an cell phone and wifi provider company any advice would be greatly appreciated

                                          Shannon Vissers

                                          Hello, unfortunately I don’t have any information about grants for your specific industry. Sometimes cities and counties will have local grant money earmarked for tech-based businesses, though, so you might want to check with your local chamber of commerce.

                                            Suzanne E

                                            Have you ever found any grants or extra help toward a loan for widows with dependent children? I have excellent credit, but “not a real job” – I’ve been told before when I applied for a home loan because I’m a substitute teacher. So, I’m pretty sure I’m going to have a hard time with banks for a start up loan. So, looking for fresh alternatives too, besides crowdfunding, which takes a percentage off the top.

                                              Shannon Vissers

                                              Hi, I haven’t come across a grant for your specific situation; usually, grant eligibility has to do more with the type of business you have rather than your personal situation (though there are a few business grants just for women). You might be able to get a startup loan through an online/alternative lender, or another option is a personal loan from a company like Prosper, LendingPoint, or Upstart. Those lenders pretty much only care about your personal credit score, and you can get up to $25-$50K.

                                                Deb

                                                Is grant funding actually available for someone who isn’t a non-profit? (Working in the mental health arena)

                                                Thank you!

                                                  Shannon Vissers

                                                  There are very few grants available to for-profit businesses, and those grants are typically very competitive and/or not very large. However, based on your profession, it is possible that there could be some local grant money that could be available, as health industry-related businesses and other businesses that benefit the community are sometimes eligible for grant money. I’d check grants.gov and do a local search for grants in your area that you might be eligible for.

                                                    brenda nakawuka

                                                    hi am looking for help to sart up an electronic shop in uganda

                                                      Shannon Vissers

                                                      Hello, I don’t know much about international grants/loans so you would need to check with your local agencies. However, I know that Kiva is one organization that provides small startup loans internationally.

                                                        Nikefa Grayson

                                                        I’m looking for startup money for a cleaning business

                                                          Jessica Dinsmore

                                                          Nikefa,

                                                          Take a look at our blog post The Step-By-Step Guide To Starting And Funding A Cleaning Business or How To Find A Startup Grant. These should help you get started. All the best!

                                                            Shannon Farrell

                                                            Hi, I am looking to open my own RV and boat storage facility in California, are there any grant’s I should look into? Also I would like my long term boyfriend (10 year, 2 kids, we dont believe in marriage) to be part owner with myself. Is it a better idea to look into grants for women or are there any other options? We are not planning on employing anyone at our facility, it would just be ran by us. Any help is greatly appreciated.

                                                              Shannon Vissers

                                                              Unfortunately, that kind of business isn’t really the type that would qualify for a grant. Grants are mostly for nonprofits, medical research, and businesses that would greatly benefit their community or industry in some way (for example, a green tech company that would employ a lot of people in a rural area). There are a few small business grants for women, but these are essentially business competitions that looking to award only especially innovative or creative startups. Your best bet would probably be a startup loan.

                                                                Eileen

                                                                Hi! I have been searching for grants to help me start a small business in Cookies I developed, actuall two of them which I want to market like in groceries, etc. I have the ideas like in packaging, design and a good name brand. I need help in nutrition facts to check my cookies, apply with no cost trademark? Can you help me and give me Legit agencies who can help me? Thank you in advance!

                                                                  Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                  Hi Eileen,

                                                                  I’d definitely suggest checking out the resources we’ve vetted within this article. They would be a great place to start! Good luck with your cookies!

                                                                    Alexius Prejean

                                                                    I’m a single mother looking for a grant to start a food truck.

                                                                      karen davenport

                                                                      I am wanting to start a quilt shop in South Eastern Kentucky. Is any small business grant for women? Is any grants or loans that does not require you put lien on your assets.

                                                                        Shannon Vissers

                                                                        Hi Karen, here are a couple resources I’ve written which include some unsecured loan options and a list of business grants for women:
                                                                        https://www.merchantmaverick.com/best-unsecured-business-loans/
                                                                        https://www.merchantmaverick.com/the-best-business-grants-for-women/

                                                                          Maeen Shabain

                                                                          I need Grant to open a small Deli restaurant and North Carolina Smithfield

                                                                            Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                            Exciting! We’ve got lot’s of grant resources available for you to explore! Best of luck to you!

                                                                              Kayla

                                                                              I need help getting a grant fast to open a nutritious smoothie and juice bar.

                                                                                Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                                Hi Kayla,

                                                                                Why don’t you start with this article on finding startup grants. It’s full of excellent resources. Best of luck to you!

                                                                                  Dior lee

                                                                                  How do I apply for grants to start a food business or for a food truck?

                                                                                    Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                                    Hi Dior,

                                                                                    We haven’t yet researched Food Truck specific grants, but we have a lengthy list of grant resources that should be able to help point you in the right direction. Check it out! And good luck!

                                                                                      DAMON Walker

                                                                                      I need to get a new business grant for my BBQ place

                                                                                        Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                                        This article is a great place to start, Damon. Best of luck to you!

                                                                                          Hkung maran

                                                                                          I’m looking the money for for start open restaurant business in baton rouge Louisiana State.

                                                                                            Jessica Dinsmore

                                                                                            If you aren’t too sure if you’d qualify for a startup grant, you might want to take a look at our Startup Loan Comparison Chart. Good luck!

                                                                                              Nagesh Lingayat

                                                                                              Nice post! Thanks.

                                                                                              Leave a Reply

                                                                                              Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

                                                                                              Your Review

                                                                                              Comment moderation is enabled. Your comment may take some time to appear.
                                                                                              Please read the "User Review and Comment Policy" before posting.

                                                                                              Share