If you’ve got a brilliant idea for a start-up, and you’ve begun to talk to your friends and family about it, a frequent question you may get is, ‘how are you going to funding it?’.
Having a rock-solid idea is one thing, but accumulating the funds to do it is another thing altogether. Most people don’t have the budget to get their idea off the ground – but if you’re wise about it, you can make it happen. Let’s look at five tips for funding a start-up.
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Trade Services or Equity for Help
This is often phrased as bartering your skills – having something that you can trade for something that you really need, like funding for your start-up.
One way that you can trade services or equity to get your start-up off the ground is trying to find a bit of free office space somewhere if you can provide the rest of the office tenants with computer systems. This way, you don’t have to pay any initial rent for your start-up’s office space.
Negotiate an Advance From a Partner
If your idea has already attracted a lot of attention from potential customers, then it may be worth seeing if some of them would be willing to pay in advance for you to get the ball rolling.
It’s crucial with this tip that you find a customer that sees real value in your start-up idea and is willing to give you an advance so that you can complete the first few steps. And you will need to make sure that everything is in writing, and that you’re both clear on what the expectations are.
Grab a Loan
If you simply don’t have the funds even to start buying equipment to barter with for free office space, then you may want to think about getting out a low risk, short term loan.
Fortunately, we live in an era where it is pretty easy to get a loan, even online. From online title loans to personal loans, there are a lot of options out there that provide flexible repayment plans, so that you don’t even have to think about it until later.
Join a Start-Up Accelerator
Most major universities or community organizations are associated with companies like this, that incubate the pilot program until it’s ready to do things by itself.
The best part is that a lot of the time, they provide free resources for start-ups, which can include anything from consulting and office space. They may even offer seed funding, too.
Try a Venture Capitalist
If you haven’t already got a number of potential investors lined up, this could be your golden opportunity to get someone to back your idea.
Professional investors like venture capitalists are always on the lookout for the next big thing to put their money into, so there’s no harm in approaching one and seeing if you would be a good fit.
You’ve got the idea, and you’ve got the drive – but the road to start-up success is long and narrow. Not only do you have to give it your all, but you have to have enough, in the beginning, to get you through. Apply these practical tips to get you through that initial teething phase, and you’ll be well on your way.