Friday, April 23, 2010

How to Get Money for a Small Business

For many, one of the biggest deterrents to starting a business is finding the funds for startup. While some may chose to start a business based solely on private investment, there may be additional state and federal programs that can help.

One of the ways the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) provides short-term loans to small businesses is through their Micro-Loan Program. The SBA does not loan money, however, they guarantee it through intermediary lenders. Microloans can be used for inventory, supplies, furniture and fixtures, but not real estate purchases or to pay off existing debt. 

For businesses in California, you can find additional information at the California Business Portal; or to find grant info or other funding outside of California, check this List of economic development websites by State. Grants may also come from educational or research institutions, or from monies set aside specifically for women and minority owned businesses.

For those that are in the following sectors: Information Technology, Childcare or Renewable Energy, many states  has specific programs for entrepreneurs or small business owners that have a proven history in these areas.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Charmed: A Dog's Life in Huntington Beach

Meet Charm. She's one of two rescue dogs that belong to my roommate... which kind of makes me her "aunt".  Charm's favorite place (and one of mine too!) is Dog Beach -- just one of the many dog-friendly outdoor spots available here in Huntington Beach. Now that it's Spring, you'll find Charm and her sister Paloma, weekday mornings at Dog Beach catching Frisbees and enjoying the waves.  The roommate and I have made a pact to take the dogs every morning and do a bit of power walking on the beach.  Whether you work from home, or spend the majority of your day in an office --there's nothing better than starting off with sun, surf and sand. I guess you could say it's a "Charmed Life" for all of us.

If you live in the area, know also that there are several good dog walkers in the area that will take your pooch to play if your're not available. In fact, we saw two that parked their SUVs or vans near us and unloaded multiple dogs for a beach field trip.  Dogs and people alike need time to enjoy a little "down time", whether it be at the beach, a park, or anywhere outside where you can have the chance to watch a sunrise, stick your toes in the sand and just BE...

Check out my article What to Do with Your Dog in Huntington Beach to find out my other favorite spot for dogs.