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Small Business Administration Offers Help For Credit-Strapped Entrepreneurs

In response to a severe credit crunch that has hit America’s small business community, the U.S. Small Business Administration has published a guide to help independent entrepreneurs — including businesses that offer Notary services such as concierge operations and retail mail and photocopy stores — get the financial assistance they need.

The guide, “Frequently Asked Questions about Small Business Finance”, describes the current market conditions, the types of financing that are typically available to small businesses and the SBA programs that help businesses obtain financing. The SBA does not lend money directly, but it has a loan guarantee program as well as a business investment program.

The demand for credit has increased significantly in the past two years as financial institutions have tightened their lending standards. Among the businesses that could benefit from access to financing are minority- and women-owned operations, which are more likely to depend on credit cards and typically require less start-up capital.

During a recent symposium held by the SBA’s Office of Advocacy, experts noted that many small businesses have burned through their available resources to survive the recession and now desperately need credit to attract new customers, hire or train employees and offer new services.

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