4 Free Resources to Help Start your Business as a Veteran
Part of being a veteran is capitalizing on the different programs and services available to you. After your service, you deserve to One option you might be looking towards is opening a new business. Here are four veteran benefits that you should be aware of to increase your chances of being successful.
Free business grant money
The SweetShares Foundation gives $10,000 in grants every month to veteran entrepreneurs or their spouses. It is a non-profit organization. Applicants must use the educational content on the website, and then submit a description and video explaining why they would be the ideal candidate for the funding. The staff examines the business idea, team and company history, impact of the award funds, the influence of the business on the military and veterans, and product-market fit to select up to ten finalists per month. The public votes for the winner and first, second, and third places also receive prizes.
U.S. Small Business Administration
The United States Small Business Administration (SBA) offers a multitude of resources to help veteran entrepreneurs. They provide free business counseling, training programs, business development opportunities, and access to capital to get started on your venture. A Veterans Business Outreach Center in your area can also aid in counseling, referrals, establishing a business plan, and getting your business up off the ground.
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
The United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers resources to help start, finance, and grow a business in their Veteran Entrepreneur Portal. It also provides opportunities for government contracts and offers links to state and local resources you might want to check out. The primary focus of the site is to help land government contracts by finding them and having proper certification as a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) or a Veteran-Owned Small Business (VOSB) to receive the highly-coveted contracts. You might also be able to find programs that offer VA loan benefits to increase capital.
Free tax preparation
Many tax companies or individuals offer free tax preparation for veterans. This is especially helpful if you’re going from filing an individual return to one for your business. The forms and effort get significantly more difficult and complicated. Having a professional who is familiar with the different forms, credits, and expenses that can minimize your tax burden.
Take advantage of the resources you have available at your fingertips. Many organizations and opportunities exist to get you started on your new entrepreneurial journey.