GOT QUESTIONS? We got answers...
Where can I find a grant to start my small business?
Grant monies are usually not available to start or grow a for-profit business, with the exception of a few high technology businesses. You may find grant information at your local library, www.cfda.gov, or www.sba.gov/expanding/grants.html.
How do I know if my business needs a license?
Contact your local SBDC to get all licensing requirement information and local agency listings.
How do I register my business name?
You must select from one of several options for your business. You can set up as a personal identity in which your business does not exist apart from you, the owner. Or, you can set up as a corporate identity in which the business exists in its own right. Or, you can set up as a limited liability which is a combination of the two. This is an important decision that affects your ownership options, personal liability, tax structure and administrative requirements such as record keeping. This is one area where you and your management team would benefit from qualified legal counsel. Registering your business name varies based on the legal entity status you chose.
How can the SBDC help my business?
The SBDC provides free one-on-one confidential counseling and low cost high quality business training workshops. Business counseling is offered in the areas of financial management, marketing, human resources, operations, and information technology. Workshop topics include starting a business, business plans, creating business financial projections, marketing your products or services, understanding financial statements, managing a business, legal issues, selling & salesmanship, new product development, HR issues and accessing financing through federal procurement.
How do I contact the SBDC?
We have 6 service centers throughout the pacific region for your convenience. It would be more beneficial for you to contact the service center nearest you. This does not mean you cannot use another center, it means that because you will probably visit the center, it will be easier to work with one closest to you.
Where can I get information about how to start a new business?
Contact any of the 6 PISBDCN service centers and they will assist you in discovering the steps you will need to start your new business. Also, you can set up an appointment with a counselor.
How much does it cost?
This is why we are the Best Kept Secret on the Planet. All your consulting sessions are free and supported by a variety of funding partners. Occasionally we charge a small fee to attend some of our cutting edge seminar and workshops on various business topics. (For a schedule, view the WORKSHOPS page.)
I already own a business; can I still use the SBDC?
Yes, because our SBDC consultants have extensive professional knowledge and expertise in areas of business development such as marketing, management, operations, expansion, we want you to feel confident that we can help your existing business grow and prosper.
Does the SBDC loan money for my business start-up?
The SBDC will assist you in preparing the proper documents and a business plan and direct you to specific lending institutions that can assist you in obtaining a small business loan. The SBDC does not provide loans or grant money.
Does the SBDC provide legal services?
The SBDC will provide you with a list of various legal providers in your area for specific legal services. They will be able to assist you in areas such as incorporations, trade names, business partnership agreements or other legal needs.
What specific services does the SBDC provide?
We have a variety of professional services on just about any topic of business you can think of. Go to the SBDC SERVICES page for a listing. A Request for Counseling Form is made available for download (see below). Please complete the form and contact the SBDC Service Center nearest you to schedule your first appointment and to get started on the path to realizing your dream–being a small business owner.
Does the SBDC provide accounting services?
The SBDC will provide you with a list of accounting firms and/or bookkeepers in your area that can fill your needs. However, a SBDC counselor will be able to assist you in getting started with questions you will need to ask your accountant/bookkeeper, what forms you need and the business regulations you need to know about.
How often will I need to meet with the SBDC before I can get a business loan?
This all depends on your ability to commit time and energy toward the writing of your business plan. Of course, there are never guarantees as to whether or not the lending institution will provide you a loan. You must have a business plan prepared before you can meet with them. This applies to anyone seeking to start a business or existing businesses wanting to expand.