Entrepreneurship is an attractive possibility for so many of us. But it’s not without its challenges.

While having your own time and being the ultimate boss sounds appealing, this role is often burdened with stresses and hardships that you wouldn’t have to face in everyday professional life.

Besides the constant need to make high-stakes decisions, you’re also under the pressure of securing financing for your company’s growth and stability.

If you want to be an effective entrepreneur, you need to know what financial options are available to you. This can help you grow your business optimally without risking bankruptcy.

From equity to strategic loans, there are many ways to alleviate some of the inherent stresses of entrepreneurship. Here are seven effective financial options you can consider as you navigate this journey.

1. Crowdfunding

One of the most telling signs that your business idea is sound is getting public approval from your target demographic.

And what better way to prove your product to the world than by getting financially incentivized votes of confidence from a crowdfunding platform?

Crowdfunding is a term that refers to a company attempting to raise enough capital from a large number of people. The causes can vary, from getting enough money to pay off a relative’s hospital bill to trying to obtain enough capital for a business venture.

If you resonate more with the latter example, crowdfunding is an easy way to do two great things at once during your business’s early stage: validate your idea while also gathering capital to execute and scale your business.

In either case, supporters can donate as much as they’re willing to give to support their cause. This can be as low as a dollar to as high as five to six figures. The company usually gives higher payers additional benefits, which is often dictated by the donation value bracket.

While crowdfunding is a stellar way to accumulate capital, competition is brutal. It’s also prone to run the risk of failing to reach its goals—which can put the business to a halt if crowdfunding was the only financial strategy you applied for.

As such, always have a good backup plan. Plan your business deadlines accordingly, and be sure to satisfy your supporters.

2. Bootstrapping

Running a business at the start can be difficult if you’re a cash-strapped entrepreneur. One great way to overcome this hurdle is to cultivate your venture using your money more cost-effectively.

For instance, it may be ideal for your startup to run on affordable software systems and applications at the initial stages of your business. Then, once you start growing and scaling, you can purchase bigger plans with higher consumer capacity or switch to other subscriptions that offer more features.

Being lean at the start can help keep your business agile and self-sufficient, which is essential for businesses that are still finding stable ground to operate in.

Furthermore, your resourcefulness can pique the interest of investors and venture capitalists due to your low-cost setup and high operating efficiency, giving you more opportunities to boost your company’s reputation and ability to secure better funding.

3. Unsecured Personal Loans

Doing business in Australia and other parts of the world needs one fundamental resource: money. And soon.

If your bank account has insufficient funds, then you’ll have to seek out ways to acquire this money. And one of the fastest ways of getting is through loans from financial institutions like credit lending businesses and banks.

There are two types of personal loans: unsecured and secured personal loans. A secured personal loan is guaranteed by collateral, such as the title of a lot or vehicle. Unsecured personal loans don’t need this guarantee—but they are often paid at a higher interest rate.

Choose the type of personal loan that fits your financial circumstances the best. If your financial projections are sound and you’ve historically matched them, you can get away with unsecured loans.

Otherwise, a personal loan may be more worthwhile, especially if you have a significant asset you can use against it.

4. Government Grants

In Australia, there are a plethora of government funds that can aid businesses in starting the operational processes right away.

These grants can be acquired through various government and even non-government organisations to help businesses carry out their projects that they would otherwise have been unable to do.

You’ll have to qualify and apply for a grant to receive the benefits of one. Eligibility requirements differ from grant to grant, so do your research and ensure your business complies.

The sign-up process can be pretty complex and competitive, as the government wants to ensure that their money is going to hard-working and worthwhile ventures that can boost the local economy.

That said, it can be difficult to know what grants your business type can apply for. You may use this database to find support programs across government bodies and territories in Australia.

5. Personal Capital

Also known as self-funding, this financial approach is as straightforward as it sounds. You use money from your personal savings, your assets, or reinvested earnings to support your business growth and development.

This is a great way to remove the need for loaning and running debts. Furthermore, it also gives you complete control over your business finances—which can be beneficial if you have ample capital to begin with.

You don’t have to own an asset outright, either. You can, for instance, get a hire purchase to go against your loan, which is essentially your business’s asset as long as you continue paying the lender.

Learn more about the difference between leasing and hire purchasing.

That said, be sure to keep your personal identity different from your business identity. This is done by labeling your company as a limited company or corporation. This way, your money won’t be at risk in case your business treads bankruptcy.

6. Angel Investors

If you have a sound startup idea and need initial funding, you can consider pitching your business to angel investors—or individuals who have the means to give your business a financial boost in favor of equity for your business.

These investors not only provide the money to help you jumpstart (or continue) operations, but they can also provide you mentorship, connections, and a wealth of advice that can help you run a leaner and efficient company.

That said, getting investors to invest in your company is tough. You’ll have to pitch and show that your finances and future projections are sound. But once you do secure one on your side (with reasonable terms), then you can run your business with a good fall-back plan.

7. Friends and Family

While not the most professional thing in the world, getting some funds from your family and friends is an incredibly easy and effective way of sourcing your business funds—especially at the start.

These people are more likely to give you good deals and rates since they’re already close to you. You can convince them about the beauty and features of your product, which can help give them the confidence you need to continue running and operating the business.

With that said, be sure that you can still accomplish the payment terms that you agreed upon with your friends or family members. You wouldn’t want to tarnish your good name and reputation by postponing payment of the agreed-upon terms.

Furthermore, friends and family are by far the most accessible way to get money. If you have a vast network of connections, you can find people willing to help you support your business.