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StreetShares Blog - The Resource Center for Veteran Small Businesses

StreetShares Blog

The Resource Center for Veteran Small Businesses


4 Secrets to Become a Successful Veteran Government Contractor

The U.S. Government constantly adjusts and grows as new needs arise with changes in technology and resources. As the nation's largest consumer, the government needs an army of contractors to support its massive consumption requirements. As a result, the benefits available through government contracts are abounding. Veteran contractors are perfect candidates to fill this growing landscape because of your previous employment by the government. You’ve also learned lessons, acquired tools, and made contacts from your military experience that could be valuable in the government contracting space.

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How to Read an OnDeck Loan Offer and Prepayment Discount Fine Print

Not everyone has enough time to apply for a traditional bank or a SBA business loan or can pass the stringent underwriting criteria. So, many veteran business owners turn to online lenders who make it quick and easy to get business funding. However, small business lending doesn’t have near as much regulation as mortgage or student lending. So, some lenders find ways to explain their terms that may be confusing to any small business owner. Understanding the terrain of business loan offers is a challenge and we want to help you discern the differences and the fine print.

A few weeks ago, we provided loan calculators that presented the true cost of capital for a Kabbage loan offer. Today, we’d like to do the same for an OnDeck business loan offer as well as help you understand their prepayment charges.

OnDeck Loan Offers

Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is the main number you’ll want to look at to understand the true cost of capital. The APR takes every fee into consideration, including the factor rate, interest rate and other fees, and calculates it into a complete annual calculation.

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Earn 5% Interest While Helping Veteran Small Business

By StreetShares on April 19, 2017

Did you know that you can invest in small business loans even if you’re a ‘little guy’ retail investor? It’s true, you can.

Individual retail investors can back the small business loans we fund at StreetShares. Our investment product, called Veteran Business Bonds1, is open to retail investors thanks to our Regulation A+ offering, which is approved by the SEC.

StreetShares is the only company that allows unaccredited investors to invest in loans that help small businesses. You don’t have to be a veteran either. Any individual investor in the United States can participate.

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How Your Tax Refund Can Help You Score Better Credit

By StreetShares on April 12, 2017
If you’re getting a tax refund this year, you’ve got three major options when it comes to using the money: You can save it. You can invest it. Or you can splurge. But break things down a little further, and that check (back) from Uncle Sam can help you build credit, too. For serious.

Here are six ways your tax refund could help you build — or even establish — your credit scores.

1. Pay Down Credit Card Balances

Second rule of credit scores: Keep your debt level below at least 30% (and ideally 10%) of your total available credit. Anything beyond that is bad for your credit utilization ratio. If you’re over that limit or, worse yet, bumping up against your limits, putting your tax refund toward your credit card balances can help improve your credit score. Better yet …

2. Pay Off High-Interest Credit Card Debt

Because those balances are going to spike pretty fast. Plus, you’ll be saving money in the long run. Good rule of thumb when it comes to dealing with multiple credit card balances: Make all your minimums, but put more money toward either the smallest (because motivation) or the one with the highest annual percentage rate (because, like we said, it’ll cost you less). You can see how your credit card use is affecting your credit by viewing two of your scores, updated every 14 days, on Credit.com.

See also: How to Improve Your Personal Credit Score

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Highlighting Our Heroes, Featuring StreetShares Members with iHeart Media

Honoring our veterans, active duty military service members and their families who support them is something we do every day at StreetShares. Now, together with iHeart Media, we’re ‘Highlighting Our Heroes’ through a campaign featuring 25 exceptional StreetShares members. We’ve partnered with iHeart Media to tell stories over the next few months of our members, including veteran and military spouse business owners, military members, veterans and families who support them.

As a veteran-owned and veteran-run company, we’re dedicated to serving veterans through our financial solutions such as veteran business loans, the Patriot Express* Line of Credit, and government contract financing.

“Veterans, military service members and their families sacrifice for our country. We’re honored and humbled to help share their stories through the ‘Highlighting Our Heroes’ campaign with iHeart Media,” said Mark Rockefeller, CEO and Co-Founder of StreetShares and Iraq war veteran. 

Tune in to BIG 100 in the Washington, DC metro region each weekday at 5:00pm EDT or stream online at iheartmedia.com to hear stories of our veterans, service members and military families. You can also subscribe to the StreetShares blog to be the first to know who we’re featuring or visit highlightingourheroes.com to see who's featured.

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April 2017 Veteran Small Business Award Finalists

The Veteran Small Business Award continues! We have 10 great veteran business owners with very unique companies from 3D printing, recruiting services to children’s technology enrichment programs. Take a quick peak at the finalists below and remember to cast your vote on the StreetShares Foundation voting page. Vote now and help three veteran business owners get grant funding.

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StreetShares Foundation Dedicates May to Military Spouse Business Owners

May 12, 2017 is Military Spouse Appreciation Day. On this day, Americans celebrate the backbone of the families who support our military service members during mission, deployment and reintegration.

The StreetShares Foundation is dedicating the full month of May to appreciate Military Spouse business owners through the Veteran Small Business Award. Military Spouses have a unique position as business owners. We’re looking forward to rewarding three exceptional Military Spouse business owners with $5,000, $3,000 and $2,000.

For the month of April, we will be accepting applicants from ONLY Military Spouse business owners. Eligibility requirements are the same, except you must be married to a member of the military, reserves, National Guard, or a veteran of these services and must prove it. To get started, download the ebook exclusively designed to give Military Spouse business owners resources to help them get started and to grow, all in one place. Then, apply with a 300-word summary of your business and a short video.


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How to Calculate True Cost of Capital for a Kabbage Loan Offer

By StreetShares on March 30, 2017

As a small business owner, you’re most likely aware of a lot of lending options such as applying at a traditional bank, asking friends and family members or bootstrapping. If you’re here visiting the StreetShares blog, you’re obviously aware that online lending is also a great option for small businesses who need up to a $100,000 loan or a line of credit or $500,000 for government contractor invoice factoring. 

However, understanding your different loan offers can be overwhelming. Over the next several weeks, we’re going to provide examples of how each online lender, including Kabbage and OnDeck, break down their loan offers. These blog posts will help veteran business owners conduct your own apples-to-apples comparison of different business loan offers.

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3 Ways Bad Credit Can Affect Your Business Loan

By StreetShares on March 28, 2017

This is the final post in our credit scores series exploring ways your score can affect your veteran-owned small business, particularly in regards to business funding.

Every small business needs money, but sometimes entrepreneurs take the leap to start a business when they first have their idea or when they think the “timing is right” without fully considering the strength of their financial position and credit score. Before you start looking for small business funding, we recommend you know your credit score. If you’re looking to fund your veteran-owned small business and have a low credit score, it’s worth hesitating long enough to consider some of the financial ramifications of diving into the business loan process before your credit score has improved. That’s why we’re going to delve into how a low credit score can have a direct impact on your veteran business loan.

As you may know, personal FICO credit scores are represented by a three-digit number ranging between 300 and 850. Click here to learn more about what makes up a personal and business credit score. The most important thing to keep in mind with credit scores is that the higher your score the better:

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Veteran Business Grants Awarded $10,000 in March 2017

The March 2017 Veteran Small Business Award recipients are here! It was a very tight competition. Thank you to all of the finalists for your efforts and remember you can always apply again if you didn’t win this time. The goals of the StreetShares Foundation are to inspire, educate and support veteran business owners. Now, let’s get inspired by three impactful and exceptional veteran-owned businesses.

1st Place: Tom Cox, Army Veteran, CEO and Co-Founder of Candl, $5,000 (Atlanta, Ga.)

2nd Place: Brian Wood, Army Veteran, CEO of Good Shepherd Defense and Training, $3,000 (Morton, Ill.)

3rd Place: Charles Miller, Army Veteran, Founder and Designer of Charles Miller Brand Denim, $2,000 (Washington, DC)

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