4 Options to Keep Cash-Strapped Start-Ups Afloat

4 Options to Keep Cash-Strapped Start-Ups Afloat

Growing a new business can have its challenges. You may drain your coffers quicker than anticipated and struggle to meet your financial obligations. But, cash-flow obstacles can be overcome. Research the options available to you and you might be surprised to learn there is help out there.

Government-backed Loans

Some major banks have set aside funds specifically for small business loans. You may be able to apply for a government-guaranteed loan through your current lender. The major advantage is that the risk to the bank is diminished when a loan is backed by the government, increasing the likelihood of a successful loan application that could free up funds to keep your business solvent.

State and Local Programs

There’s also the possibility of securing grants. Reach out to local and state government offices to determine what support they can offer small businesses. It’s in the interests of these agencies to encourage home-grown financially healthy enterprises, so don’t be afraid to ask. Be aware, however, that you may be required to match their input with your own capital.


If you have an original and well-developed creative project in mind that could attract support online, consider launching a crowdfunding campaign. Companies like Kickstarter provide a platform for individual entrepreneurs and fledgling businesses to promote their idea and gather support. By setting a target and establishing a time frame, you can request pledges to get your concept off the ground. While contributions are not tax deductible and there is no return for investors, crowdfunding ventures are surprisingly popular. In fact, nearly 100,000 people have so far committed funds to projects via Kickstarter.

While asking friends and strangers for money does not offer a sustainable solution to cash-flow problems, and may even feel like begging at times, crowdfunding is becoming a more broadly accepted means of raising money. It’s also an excellent way to make the most of your web-based social networks.

Tax Relief

The burden of a tax debt can be stressful, weighing on your mind and zapping your cash reserves. Tax relief in the form of assistance from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) may give your business the reprieve it needs to focus on making a profit. The IRS Fresh Start Program aims to support you in meeting your tax commitments through penalty subsidies, installment agreements (monthly payment plans for up to six years,) and offers in compromise, which provides a window for negotiating down any outstanding amounts.

Despite some misinformed public sentiment, the IRS actually wants to help you pay your taxes and has generated initiatives to facilitate this. Applications in uncomplicated circumstances can even be submitted online.

So your start-up has encountered a few speed bumps. Think of them as opportunities to learn and seek information about overcoming these hurdles. The process may not be easy, but by putting in a few extra hours, you’re giving the business you have already committed so much time to the best chance of survival.

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