There are many resources out there for a veteran-owned business and many reasons why being an entrepreneur after your time in the armed services is a good idea. Each of these reasons and resources can be deeply personal and unique to you but finding tips to help finance your company can be generalized into three main ones; having a plan, researching your resources and gathering the paperwork.
Have a Plan
The best tip you can follow when starting your own business is to have a solid plan, in writing. This is something that you can take to investors, lenders and even potential clients when you are starting up and it also gives you a good sense of the benchmarks you need to hit and when. It is a good idea to research some business plan examples and to brainstorm ideas before you get started.
When you are building your plan, put real dollar amounts in where possible to give yourself a good idea of what kind of financing you need. This can also help investors and loan underwriters see how you are planning on spending the money and whether it is a good investment on their part.
Research Your Resources
When you are starting a veteran-owned business you can find many resources to help you finance it such as grants, SBA loans, and alternative financing methods. It is a good idea to start researching which ones are available to you and what the requirements are for each one. For instance, your state or local government may have grant programs for veterans starting businesses in certain industries. This can give you a good list to compare against the needs outlined in your business plan so you can get started with the application processes.
Gather the Paperwork
Before you submit any applications or even decide on exactly which resources you are going to use, it is a good idea to start gathering relevant paperwork. This means checking your credit scores and histories for any inaccuracies and make improvements where you can. It also means finding your certifications in related fields and determining whether you have everything you need for a business license or loan application. For instance, if you want to open a custom welding shop, then you will want to make sure that your welding certifications are up to date.
Opening a veteran-owned business can be one of the most difficult and rewarding things that you do. To find the funding necessary you will want to have a detailed business plan that you can put into action, spend time researching the available financing resources and gather all the relevant paperwork.