Small Business Education FAQs

NeighborWorks Housing Solutions is here to help start and grow small businesses in our local community.

We have access to funding that will put loan opportunities into the hands of start-up businesses as well as companies that want to grow. 

FACT: Most small businesses are not eligible for commercial loan funding until they have been in business for 2 years. 

NeighborWorks Housing Solutions has access to funding of up to $50,000.00 to qualified small business owners. To qualify, we require that you complete our small business program, Building A Better Business Bootcamp. It is a day-long boot camp that covers all the qualifications for starting or growing a business. This program is a step-by-step process for creating a working business plan from research and analysis to marketing and financial projections. Upon completion, you will know whether you are ready to go into business or need to work on your idea or concept. If issues arise, we will help you work through them. This is a team approach to a successful business plan.

As of September 2024, we now have a Marketing Loan Package. We offer a $4500 loan at 5% over two (2) or three (3) years with the first 6 months of no payment. The funds are to be used to create or enhance your digital presence on the web. Our basic package includes a customized website with keyword content, SEO improvement, and an optimized Google Business profile. See our upcoming class schedule for more information on the loan package or contact Tricia White at pwhite@nhsmass.org

Our goal is to help get you into business and know your plan will keep you in business.

Before you sign up for small business classes, here are some frequently asked questions :

What is the Building a Better Business Bootcamp program?

It is a day-long, in-person educational session focusing on the legal, financial, and marketing aspects of starting, running, growing, or exiting your business.  The class meets from 9 AM to 3 PM in numerous locations within our service areas of Attleboro, Brockton, Fall River, Kingston, New Bedford, Quincy, and Taunton. This class focuses on legal entities, tax liabilities, search, unique selling propositions, customer profiles, competition, digital presence, marketing strategies, start-up/growth costs, pricing, monthly expenses, cash flow and projections.

What does it cost to take the classes?

This class is FREE and we provide lunch for participants so we can enjoy a networking session and opportunities to share stories about their business.

When are the classes?

We hold two (2) business boot camps per month in various locations. You can click the following link to see all available classes: https://nhsmass.org/events/category/workshops/

How many people are in each class?

Normally, our classes have between 8-20 individuals in attendance. Those who participate are in start-up, stabilization, and growth. No matter the level of business expertise, you will learn quite a bit from this boot camp.

Are the classes in-person or online?

All boot camps are in person. After trying numerous classes online, we found the boot camp worked best for getting people together to learn more about owning and operating a small business.

Do I automatically get a loan if I go through the classes?

No. Unfortunately, you must provide a viable business plan, along with established financial and loan requirements. Our goal is to get your plan fundable.

Who is eligible for the loan?
  • For-profit, Brockton based businesses
  • Start-up or existing business
  • Loans are not intended for refinancing
  • First priority for the program is loans to minority, women-owned and veteran owned businesses
How does the loan program work?

The loans are available to deserving businesses along with information, education, resources and tools to help small businesses succeed. NeighborWorks Housing Solutions administers the Loan Fund with responsibilities including:

  • Overseeing applications with the Bank Group of NeighborWorks
  • Processing credit decisions and disbursement
  • Handling loan administration
What are the loan rates?
  • Targeted at Prime +3% fixed at time of closing
  • 3, 5 or 7 year term loans
  • Advances under the program not subject to prepayment fees
Do I get any credits or money towards my business or loan, if I attend?

At this time, we are putting together a “Pitch Contest” for those who complete the program. We are looking at prize amounts and will announce them at the end of the program.

What if I am already in business, can I still take the classes?

Yes, this class is for businesses in start-up, stabilization, and growth phases.

Can I just take the class even though I don’t want a loan?

Yes. We want to help you build a solid business plan for when you might need funding.

Should I take the class if I’m thinking of starting a business?

Yes. This is a great class for helping you put all your ideas in one place and developing a strategy for whether you should or shouldn’t go into business.

Can I take the class if I’m not opening a business in Brockton?

Yes, but please remember, you wouldn’t be eligible for the loan program unless you are starting, growing, or relocating a business in Brockton. In time, we will have loan opportunities for the communities that NeighborWorks Housing Solutions services: Fall River, Kingston, New Bedford, Plymouth, Quincy, and Taunton.

Do you offer translation services?

Yes, we provide translation services when requested.

Are you offering any additional business classes?

Yes, we offer several business seminars based on marketing and legal education. We expand our offerings every year,  so if you are interested in business education, click this link and you can find our present offerings.

Our goal is to help get you into business and know your plan will keep you in business.

Sign up for our email newsletter for up-to-date information on classes, grants, loans, and networking opportunities, or click the link for Upcoming Events.