The amount of time that it takes to hear back about small business grants can vary, particularly for different grant types. Assuming that you’ve filled out all of the appropriate paperwork properly and submitted all other necessary documentation such as your business plan, it could still take anywhere from a few months to a full year. The waiting time for a government grant can be a very stressful period but you’ll get through it!
In the meantime, it is important that you track and continuously monitor the progress of your grant(s). That’s one of the key reasons that it’s recommended that you learn about average waiting periods for different grant types. If you know roughly when you should hear something, and you haven’t, it’s time to check in.
Time Frames for the Four Types of Small Business Grants
Some grant funders will keep you updated on the status of your application better than others. While it is convenient when they do so, you don’t have to rely solely on them contacting you. You can reach to them at any time as well.
- Corporate- Corporate grant trustees are typically pretty good about keeping you in the loop. It usually takes between 4-6 months to hear back with a definitive yes or no.
- Federal Government- Largely in part because of the volume of applicants and processing, the Federal Govt. may take a bit of prodding to get any updates out of. You should know within 3-6 months of applying whether or not you’ve been approved. So at least the wait time isn’t too terrible!
- Foundation- Foundations prefer to form close relationships with their applicants in order to better evaluate their potential, goals, etc. Because of this, you’ll likely hear from them throughout the waiting period. Foundations typically take around 6 months to award or deny applicants.
- State- State grants have around the same waiting period as Foundation grants; 6 months. These grants can be difficult to learn information about while they are pending. To smooth the process out, you can contact a State official to help you monitor your application’s progress. When doing so, you’ll need to send them a copy of your submitted application.