At the Winthrop Region SBDC, we've done our best to create a Web site that anticipates and satisfies the needs of our clients' and potential clients. With that goal in mind, we've compiled the following information to provide you with the answers to frequently asked questions. If you do not find an answer to your question here, contact us at (803) 323-2283 or use the contact form on this website.
How do I decide what legal entity to choose for my business?
The SBA offers a page with that information. Click here to read about the various business structures, and check with your CPA as well. These are tax designations and depending on what you choose will therefore have implications when it’s time to file your taxes.
How can I know if I’m ready to start a business? Are there any guidelines I can use?
Yes, we have a Checklist on this site that asks you questions that will help you recognize your readiness to start a business.
A: A business plan serves a dual purpose. As a business owner, it gives you a tried-and-true method to grow your business .... a road map of where you and where you’re headed so you don’t go off course and put your business at risk perhaps. It also gives potential investors, lenders, and other parties a summary of the business that you plan to start. The business plan describes every facet of your business and is required by both commercial and nonprofit lenders. SBDC consultants work with qualified entrepreneurs to design business plans for loan application packages.
Can I receive government financing with poor credit?
A: For an applicant to receive SBA financing, you must first meet the credit requirements of the individual local lender. Every bank is different in its requirements. Only after these requirements are met is your application forwarded to the SBA. The SBDC uses financial analysis software to determine if new clients are likely to qualify for financing. For those clients who do not qualify, the SBDC offers counseling on alternative financing information.
We can also provide you with information on how you can improve your credit score. Although this takes time to accomplish, the sooner you start, the sooner you’ll be able to qualify for a loan for your approved project.
Does the government offer special programs for minorities?
A: Yes. The SBA has both a Women's and a Minority Pre-qualification program. To qualify, the business must have at least 51% woman or minority ownership. The applicant must meet the SBA's qualifications for assistance. In the State of South Carolina, certification to become a Minority-Owned Business is handled through the Governor’s Office of Small and Minority Business Assistance.
SC Small Business Development Centers
at the Rock Hill location of
The Winthrop SBDC is funded by the SBA and the State of South Carolina, and hosted by Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC