A new survey of business climate ranks Raleigh in the nation’s top ten for small businesses.
Triangle Business Journal today is noting Raleigh made the top 10 list for the Best Cities for Business, 2013. Raleigh-Durham got an A in this year’s survey, up from a B last year.
This information comes from the United States Small Business Friendliness survey and here’s a link to the Thumbtack.com interactive map. You will see three areas in NC are shown, Raleigh-Durham, Winston-Salem, and Charlotte.
The survey contacted over 7,000 small business owners to discover the best states for the operation of small businesses today. Topics included how easy it was to start a business and ranged through “ease of hiring, regulatory burdens, and available training and networking opportunities for business owners.”
It was interesting to read comments from business owners in different states. In almost every state there is one positive comment on that state’s taxation system, and one negative comment on the same. This holds true for local regulations as well. Whether or not the speaker thought taxation was fair or burdensome seemed based upon their personal experience in another state.
About the survey (emphasis is mine):
"Small businesses are top-of-mind for lawmakers nationwide, but too often their needs are more a matter of conjecture rather than actual evidence," says Sander Daniels, co-founder of Thumbtack.com. "Some 7,000 businesses owners across the country have told us that they care about a lot more than just taxes – for most businesses, simple licensing regulations and helpful training programs are even more important to their success."
Some of the key findings include:
Professional licensing requirements were 30 percent more important than taxes in determining a state's overall business-friendliness, confirming the findings from last year's study. Furthermore, this year's research revealed that 40 percent of U.S. small businesses are subject to licensing regulations by multiple jurisdictions or levels of government.
Utah was the top rated state, and Austin, TX was the top rated city. At the other end of the spectrum, Rhode Island and Newark, NJ were the lowest rated state and city.
The ease of obtaining health insurance was an important factor for many businesses. One-third of small business owners rated obtaining and keeping health insurance as "Very Difficult," versus only 6 percent who rated it "Very Easy."
Small businesses were relatively unconcerned with tax rates – more than half of small business owners felt they pay about the right share of taxes.
Some of their findings on the Raleigh-Durham small business climate:
Survey grade: A
Why it's best: Local owners love the chance to network and learn new skills here. The biggest gripe: The thriving climate means it's tough to find and hire the talent your business needs to grow.
No city area in South Carolina made the top ten list.
Evidently, South Carolina is not our competition.