Seeking financial support to get your business off the ground? The Fresh Start Business Grant provides $2,500 for new U.S. entrepreneurs to help with startup costs. Discover eligibility criteria, application steps, and how this grant can be your gateway to starting your entrepreneurial journey. If the Fresh Start Business Grant isn’t suitable for you, make sure to review a wide range of other funding opportunities available to small businesses and startups discussed in this article.

Fresh Start Business Grant & Other Grants and Funding for Small Businesses and Startups Cover Photos

Table of Contents

  1. The Fresh Start Business Grant
  2. Other Small Business Grants: A Comprehensive List
  3. Tailoring Your Application: How to Stand Out
  4. Empowering Your Existing Business with Additional Resources
  5. Beyond Grants: Alternative Funding Options
  6. Summary
  7. Frequently Asked Questions

The Fresh Start Business Grant

Team crafting a business plan for a Fresh Start Business Grant

Imagine having a financial boost to help you launch or expand your business. That’s precisely what the Fresh Start Business Grant offers. Bizee offers this grant, which provides $2,500 to adult entrepreneurs to cover startup costs and free formation services.

The funds from the Fresh Start Business Grant can be used to cover all your business startup costs, including:

  • Incorporation services
  • Incorporation fees
  • Obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN)
  • One year of Registered Agent service

This means you can kickstart your business without worrying about these initial expenses.

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What is included in the Fresh Start Business Grant?

The Fresh Start Business Grant offers the following benefits to new entrepreneurs:

  • $2,500 to apply toward your business startup costs
  • Handling of incorporation services in your state, including payment of the incorporation fee
  • An Employer Identification Number (EIN)
  • One year of Registered Agent service
  • Annual reporting for the business for the first year
  • Bizee’s tax accounting bundle
  • Google My Business set up (if applicable)

Eligibility Requirements for Applicants

Securing the Fresh Start Business Grant hinges on meeting the eligibility requirements. The grant is designed to support new business ideas. It is specifically aimed at adult entrepreneurs in the U.S. more precisely, the requirements for successful applicants are that they:

  • Must be a U.S. resident
  • Must be 20 years or older
  • Must be planning to start a new business or grow an existing business

Fulfilling these eligibility requirements and presenting a compelling application will allow you to leverage this fantastic grant program for your business.

How to apply for the Fresh Start Business Grant

To apply for the Fresh Start Business Grant, follow these steps:

  1. Complete the online application.
  2. Showcase your entrepreneurial spirit through a short, impactful 2-minute video.
  3. Include any necessary supporting documents, such as a sample business plan, to strengthen your application.

A comprehensive business plan and financial forecasts are application essentials for the Fresh Start Business Grant. Show them what you’re made of by including all the necessary details to support your business plan and financial projections.

Other Small Business Grants: A Comprehensive List

Team discussing inside the board room about other Small Business Grants

Navigating the world of small business grants can seem daunting, but it can be a rewarding journey with the proper knowledge and resources. Various types of grants are available for small businesses, each with its unique criteria and application process.

From federal and state grants to grants from private companies and nonprofits, businesses have countless opportunities to secure funding. Specialized grants also cater to diverse entrepreneurs, offering tailored funding opportunities. With the right support and guidance, you can find grants that align with your business goals and needs and proceed to make successful grant applications.

Federal and State Small Business Grants

Federal and state small business grants are available through various government agencies. Information and applications for these grants can often be found on government websites such as and These grants provide funding for businesses in various industries, with the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program being a standout among federal grants. It provides financing for small businesses engaged in scientific research and development, helping them innovate and grow.

Companies that meet the size standards set by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for most industries engaged in scientific research and development can qualify for the SBIR program and are eligible to apply! If this sounds like your company, carefully review application instructions and eligibility requirements, and good luck with your application.

Grants from Private Companies and Nonprofits

Two individual in a meeting shaking hands

Private companies and nonprofits also offer small business grants, often targeting specific industries or demographics. These include programs from:

  • FedEx
  • Walmart
  • Visa
  • National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) Growth Grants

These economic development organizations, including nonprofit organizations, provide startup business grants and funding opportunities for small businesses. They support small business owners through small business technology transfer initiatives.

These grants from private companies and nonprofits often target specific niche groups, including:

  • entrepreneurs
  • women
  • veterans
  • minority-owned small businesses

This could be your opportunity to tap into these resources and make your business succeed, taking it to the next level.

Specialized Grant Programs for Diverse Entrepreneurs

Specialized grant programs cater to diverse entrepreneurs, providing tailored funding opportunities. These programs often target specific groups, such as women, minorities, and veterans, providing them unique opportunities. Remember that aligning with these grant programs’ unique criteria is key to a successful application.

When applying for specialized grant programs, it is paramount to submit your application before the deadline through platforms like Look for specific instructions and guidance to complete the application successfully. Doing so increases your chances of securing a grant and expanding your business.

Tailoring Your Application: How to Stand Out

While securing a grant can revolutionize your business, standing out among numerous applicants for the same grant can be challenging. So, how can you differentiate your application? The answer lies in tailoring your application to meet the grant program’s unique criteria and showcasing your business’s unique strengths.

A well-written business plan is the key to making your grant application stand out. It showcases the business’s purpose, strategy, and financial projections, setting you up for success. Additionally, providing additional documentation such as financial statements, tax returns, and personal references can strengthen your application and increase your chances of securing the grant.

Crafting a Winning Business Plan

Crafting a Winning Business Plan

A well-crafted business plan is essential to a successful grant application. It should include key components such as:

  • Executive summary
  • Business description
  • Market analysis and strategy
  • Marketing and sales plan
  • Organization and management
  • Product line or services
  • Funding request
  • Financial projections
  • Appendix

To effectively communicate your business idea in your business plan, focus on the following:

  • The user’s benefit
  • The market’s interest
  • Your audience
  • Presenting yourself professionally
  • Narrating a captivating story
  • Elaborating on all the details
  • Furnishing supporting documents and reference data.

Incorporating primary research methods like focus groups, interviews, surveys, observations, and secondary research methods involving analyzing existing data and reports can supercharge your business plan for a successful grant application.

Meeting the Grant Program’s Unique Criteria

Aligning with the grant program’s unique criteria is vital for application success. You can increase your chances of securing a grant by delivering top-notch grant applications, thoroughly comprehending the program’s evaluation criteria, and meeting the basic eligibility requirements. Stay informed and proactive, as eligibility criteria for federal and state grants differ for each program.

Leveraging Additional Documentation

Leveraging additional documentation can further strengthen your grant application. This includes robust financial statements alongside a compelling business plan. These statements offer concrete proof of your business’s financial strength and future projections.

In addition to the business plan and financial statements, including tax returns and personal references in your grant application can boost your chances of success. These documents provide solid proof of the applicant’s qualifications, credibility, and suitability to take on the proposed research or project. Reviewers depend on references to evaluate the quality of the applicant’s work, gain insights into the field, and validate the claims made in the application.

Empowering Your Existing Business with Additional Resources

In addition to grants, other resources are available to empower your existing business. These include free formation services, registered agent benefits, and support from Small Business Development Centers. These resources can provide additional support to help your business grow and succeed.

Free formation services like Inc Authority, Bizee, and ZeBusiness offer 100% free online LLC registration, business name checks, registered agent services, live expert support, and preparation of entity formation documents. Small Business Development Centers provide valuable resources such as coaching, education, technical support, and networking opportunities. These resources can help small businesses thrive and grow. Take advantage of these resources and receive free formation services to turbocharge your business growth.

Free Formation Services and Registered Agent Benefits

Firm handshake from Free Formation Services and Registered Agent

Free formation services and registered agent benefits can streamline your business setup process and ensure compliance with state regulations. Companies such as Inc Authority provide an entirely free online LLC registration. This includes:

  • Business name check
  • Registered agent services
  • Live expert support
  • Preparation and filing of necessary entity formation documents

A registered agent safeguards the business by providing a reliable point of contact for receiving important legal, government, and tax documents, thereby facilitating prompt responses to official matters. This can save the cost of separately hiring a registered agent and ensures that the business stays compliant with state laws for official documents and correspondence.

Utilizing Small Business Development Centers

Small Business Development Centers, or SBDCs, are incredible programs that provide a wide range of business-related services, including professional advising and technical assistance. They are designed to support existing small businesses and help local entrepreneurs in their endeavors.

SBDCs offer small businesses a wide range of support, including:

  • Financial assistance
  • Marketing support
  • Operations improvement
  • Financial management
  • Technical expertise

These services are specifically tailored to help businesses thrive and succeed. They work closely with local SBA district offices to ensure comprehensive statewide support through various available resources.

Beyond Grants: Alternative Funding Options

While grants are an excellent source of funding, alternative options are available to small businesses. These include Small Business Administration (SBA) loans, microloans, and creative financing strategies like crowdfunding and business credit cards. Exploring these options can provide additional sources of funding to help your business grow.

SBA loans and microloans offer excellent funding opportunities for small businesses, but they differ in scale. Microloans are perfect for those starting small, with a cap of $50,000, and accessible to those with no credit history or lower incomes. On the other hand, SBA loans can offer more significant amounts of financing to help you achieve your business goals.

SBA Loans and Microloans

SBA loans and microloans, such as small business loans, provide accessible financing options for small businesses. They offer varying loan amounts, interest rates, and repayment terms. With benefits like interest rate caps and reduced lender risk, they are a great alternative to grants for funding.

To capitalize on SBA loans and microloans, businesses should:

  • Be for-profit
  • Operate within the U.S.
  • Maintain a credit score of 620 or higher for microloans
  • Meet lender and loan-specific criteria

For microloans specifically, working with an SBA-approved intermediary is often necessary.

Creative Financing Strategies

Creative financing strategies like crowdfunding and business credit cards can offer additional funding sources for startups and small businesses. Crowdfunding for small business funding is all about harnessing the power of the online platform to gather small contributions from numerous individuals. This can be in donations, rewards, or even equity-based models, offering a range of exciting possibilities for small businesses.

For your crowdfunding needs, you can explore StartEngine, Indiegogo, Kickstarter, Fundable, CircleUp, Patreon, and Wefunder. These platforms are great options for getting your startup off the ground.

Peer-to-peer lending is another innovative financing strategy that opens up new possibilities for borrowers to access funding. By directly connecting borrowers with individual lenders through online platforms, it offers a more accessible and advantageous approach to financing.


Whether you’re starting a new business or looking to grow an existing one, securing the right funding is one of the key factors for success. From the Fresh Start Business Grant to federal and state grants, private company and nonprofit grants, and specialized grant programs for diverse entrepreneurs, many opportunities are available. Understanding the grant’s unique criteria, crafting a compelling business plan, and leveraging additional documentation can make your application stand out. Consider alternative funding options like SBA loans, microloans, and creative financing strategies to support your business growth further. The journey to securing funding may seem daunting, but with the right resources and guidance, it is a journey well worth taking.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the government give money to startups?

Yes, the government does provide grants for startups, which can be a valuable source of funding to help businesses get on the road to success. It’s a good way for startups to secure additional resources.

What is the $5,000 SBA grant?

The $5,000 SBA grant is provided as a Supplemental Targeted Advance, which does not have to be repaid and can be combined with any previously received EIDL Advance or Targeted EIDL Advance, up to a total of $15,000. These grants were included in the American Rescue Plan to support businesses with more than 50 percent economic loss.

What is the Incfile grant for fresh start?

The Incfile Fresh Start Business Grant provides $2,500 and Incfile’s Gold plan for free to adult entrepreneurs in the U.S. who are starting a new business or significantly growing an existing one. This grant can greatly help those looking to kickstart their entrepreneurial journey.

What is the Fresh Start Business Grant?

The Fresh Start Business Grant provides new entrepreneurs a $2,500 grant and free formation services to help cover their startup costs. It’s an excellent opportunity for those looking to kickstart their business.

What are some examples of federal and state small business grants?

One example of a federal small business grant is the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, while state-level grants are available through various government agencies. These grants can be an excellent opportunity to fund small business ideas and projects.