If your small business is in need of funding, be sure to think outside the box when it comes to locating funds. You might start by contacting your state, county, and local development departments, because many offer funding programs to foster business within a certain geographic area.
Also be sure to take advantage of national organizations aimed at helping specific types of small business owners. For example, the National Organization of Women Business Owners offers special funding programs for women entrepreneurs, and the National Minority Supplier Development Council has an arm that works with minority entrepreneurs.
You can also call on the community banks in your area. These smaller banks pride themselves on helping small business owners. In addition, you should find out if there are any revolving loan fund (RLF) programs for which you might qualify. They provide gap financing that your bank won’t or can’t offer. Your banker should know of any RLFs available.
Finally, be sure to visit www.sba.gov/financing, the finance section of U.S. Small Business Administration’s Web site. It provides details on SBA’s many funding programs. Perhaps you qualify for one.