Our Consulting Team oversees operation of the Habitat for Neighborhood Business®* (HNB) program, to include:
- Community outreach and informational meetings to inform prospective entrepreneurs about what to expect when starting or expanding a business, services available through a HNB program and, when available, the advantages of operating within a HNB Designated Center**
- Collaboration with other organizations who may support HNB entrepreneurs and help us achieve our mission
- Counsel entrepreneurs interested in entering the HNB program and discuss options with those who we believe are not “ready” to open a business, perhaps not at this time.
- Arrange Small Business Development Center classes, when necessary or appropriate, for prospective program participants
- Assist with development of a Business Plan upon acceptance into the program
- Establish a two or three-person advisory board, including a university Graduate student when available
HNB Entrepreneurs receive, based on need and availability, the following:
- Assistance in identifying sources of business loans
- Discounted or pro bono accounting and legal services
- Often provided by interns and Law Clinic students
- Assistance in purchasing reconditioned, discounted computer equipment and business specific software necessary for the business
- Assistance with start-up operations, point-of-sale training, banking arrangements, credit card acceptance, etc.
- Assistance with real-estate matters through HNB-Realty Advisors
- Guidance with lease negotiations
- Discounted or pro bono store design support, interior finish and selection
- Vetting of contractors
- Suggestions for insurance broker/agent
In addition, the following may apply:
The mentor team and entrepreneur may present requests for cash grants based on the business sharing equally in the cost. The HNB program leadership will evaluate each request based on merit, frequency of requests, available program funds at the time and other factors.
Some entrepreneurs will operate within a HNB Designated Center** which will entitle them to some or all of the following benefits:
- Property Owner provided rent discounts for participants satisfactorily participating in the HNB program
- Financial support for pre occupancy tenant finish cost
- Allowance for tenant sponsored special holiday or seasonal events
- No charge security system
*Also operating as Habitat for Business®
**A Designated Center property has agreed to support HNB entrepreneurs who enter and remain active participants the program.