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StreetShares Blog - The Resource Center for Veteran Small Businesses

StreetShares Blog

The Resource Center for Veteran Small Businesses

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7 Things to Know About the Military’s New Blended Retirement System

By StreetShares on July 19, 2017

 

A huge change is on the horizon for many of our nation’s service members in the form of a new retirement system. The military will begin implementation in 2018, affecting not only military members who will begin their careers in 2018, but also those who currently serve. Why the change? As it stands, only 19 percent of active duty members and 14 percent of reserve members will actually hit the 20-year service mark required to receive retirement benefits from the military – about 1/6 of its population, according to the DoD.

The Department of Defense is rolling out the Blended Retirement System to serve the remaining 80 percent of service members currently left out in the cold. The goal is to offer a retirement system that aligns more closely with a civilian 401(k) plan, as well as to offer benefits for those who serve their country in uniform but not for a full 20-year career. While this new system is designed to save the government money, many benefits are available for military members who understand the new system and want to build their savings for retirement as a veteran who may be seeking to open a small business or a government contractor. 

Below are some highlights to help you understand the alterations that will result from the implementation, as well as dig in to better define the significance of these changes. None of this is financial advice. It's just meant to be informative.

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Highlighting Our Heroes: Earn 5% Interest by Investing in Veterans

Tomorrow we celebrate the Fourth of July, which commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. As we prepare for family reunions, barbecues and cook outs around the country, let’s also remember the reason for this special holiday. The Thirteen Colonies were legally separated from Great Britain after the American Revolution and the United States of America was founded.

This was the beginning of recognizing our veterans for their service and sacrifice for our country. Let’s recognize the men and women who have served our country since the American Revolution. We honor veterans every day as they’re also the ones who are growing the U.S. economy through small business. At StreetShares, we're the go-to financing partner for veteran small business owners looking to grow their businesses with business loans, lines of credit or government contract financing. This week’s Highlighting Our Heroes include veterans from industries such as energy, education, consumer goods and online communities connecting veterans through marketplaces, business and real estate.

Learn more about each hero below and on iHeart Radio’s BIG 100 local Washington, DC radio station or stream online at 5:00pm eastern every week day. Inspired by these stories and want to help veteran businesses? Start investing in them by opening a Veteran Business Bonds account and earn 5% interest. Learn more here.

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Highlighting Our Heroes: Invest in Veteran Small Business

The United States of America will turn 241 years old next week on the Fourth of July. Since its birth, millions have served in the military. As of 2014, there are 21.8 million veterans in the armed forces, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Even more, veterans account for 9 percent of small business in the U.S., according to the SBA.

We honor our heroes every day by working with veteran business owners and helping fund their businesses through term loans, lines of credit, contract financing and veteran business grants. This week, we’re highlighting extraordinary veteran business owners who have founded companies that give back to the community, whether it’s through charities, consumer products, lifestyle coaching, mental health, venture capital or medicine.

Learn more about each hero below, at highlightingourheroes.com and on iHeart Radio’s BIG 100 local Washington, DC radio station or stream online at 5:00pm eastern every week day. Inspired by these stories and want to help veteran businesses? You can start by investing in them by opening a Veteran Business Bonds* account and earn 5% interest. 

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When Should You Cash Out Your Thrift Savings Plan (TSP)?

By StreetShares on June 15, 2017

U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt Bobby Yarbrough) (This image was manipulated using filters.)

If you have a Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), you probably signed up for it at the start of your military career, and by now are dimly aware that a percentage of your monthly income contributes to the plan. But since it’s always been that way, you haven’t thought much about it.

Now you’re transitioning. Do you know how much you’ve saved for retirement, whether you should “roll over” your TSP into an employer 401(k) plan, and what all these acronyms and numbers mean? Here are quick answers to all your questions about the TSP, and how to decide whether to cash it out or not.

What is the TSP?

The TSP is a special type of Individual Retirement Account (IRA) maintained by the federal government and offered to federal employees.

Although service members have a 20-year pension plan, they can use the TSP as an alternate or supplemental plan. The TSP is a good deal because the federal government pays the administrative costs of the plan, so your money is never subject to fees for trading, account transfers or anything else.

It’s basically a free IRA for service members and other federal employees.

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Small Business Impact on the U.S. Economy & How Business Funding Helps

Do you realize how much our big economy relies on small business? As we celebrate National Small Business Week, let’s take a look at exactly how much small businesses impact the U.S. economy and more specifically how StreetShares small business owners and veteran business owners make an impact.

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Celebrating Small Business, Military Service and Veteran Entrepreneurs

It’s National Small Business Week and the beginning of National Military Appreciation Month! We’re honored to be associated with these two special celebrations and to get the Professional Services Innovator of the year award ourselves from the Greater Washington Innovation Awards.

At StreetShares, we recognize small businesses, military members and veterans every week as they are who we serve every day. The U.S. Small Business Administration has declared this week as National Small Business Week to highlight the impact of exceptional entrepreneurs and small business owners who fuel the U.S. economy by creating jobs and innovation. 

Senator John McCain designated May as National Military Appreciation Month. During this month, it’s encouraged for Americans to recognize U.S. service members. There are six national observance days to help everyone get involved.

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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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3 Reasons to Invest in American Small Businesses

By StreetShares on February 14, 2017

From the earliest days of our country, small businesses were the backbone of the American economy. Investments were made locally through the informal networks of investors and merchants. Industries were built and regions prospered through locals investing, buying and trading with the companies they believed in. But we don’t live in colonial times any longer. We can still support the business owners and entrepreneurs who provide great services and quality products and there are plenty in our own backyards. What if we committed to supporting small businesses? What if we committed to keeping money in our local economies that would help create more jobs, cut down on packaging and transportation waste, and put working capital back into the hands of Main Street America?

Here’s three reasons why you should consider supporting small businesses:

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Investing in StreetShares Means Investing in Veteran Small Business

By StreetShares on January 12, 2017

As a peer-to-peer lender, we fund veteran small businesses with small business loans and lines of credit that are backed by investors who support veterans. Here's the story of one of our many veteran investors who proudly supports veteran-owned small businesses. Furthermore, his member username is ISupportVets. He explains why he invests in businesses on StreetShares, as written in his own words.

What is the significance behind your username “ISupportVets”?  

The ISupportVets username accurately describes the primary reason that I invest as a StreetShares Pro member, because I do support veterans. I assist veterans through several organizations and see StreetShares as another way to support them. I really like being able to give veterans a hand up by promoting their veteran owned small businesses.

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Mission: Retirement & Your Financial Allies [INFOGRAPHIC]

Attention all military members and veterans: assess your retirement plan for your 2017 New Year’s Resolutions. You served our country. You deserve to able to retire in it. Do not do yourself a disservice.

Like any military mission, planning for “Mission: Retirement” should include a sound strategy and a clear definition as to what success looks like.

Sure, saving as much money as possible seems to make sense. But, how much will you need? And what are some ways to grow your money? What is hand-to-hand combat like on the financial battlefield so you’ll be ready when the time comes?

While no short blog article can cover all that in major details, what follows below is an understanding of “Mission: Retirement” and financial allies that can help any military member or veteran as well any spouses or family members in between.

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