Finally we get to a type of loan that simply has to be an investment loan. Indeed, if the money you borrow in order to start a business does not significantly improve your ability to add future value (as any investment loan should), your business will fail and you will lose a lot of time and money. This makes business loans a lot more beneficial to our civilization in general simply because people have a direct incentive to ensure that the money they borrow ultimately benefits society.
The problem is just that the trillions and trillions of dollars worth of consumer and speculation loans given out over the past couple of decades have now created a totally over-leveraged economy where business start-ups are even riskier than usual. You therefore have go to extra lengths to ensure that you can offer a product or service that will remain in demand even if the economy turns downward. This certainly is no trivial task.
If you want to be a true hero though, you can consider starting a business especially focused on promoting the sustainability of our civilization. Making good money from something that truly contributes to the world, something that will help create a pleasant living environment not only for this generation but also for those yet to come, really comes very close to the ultimate achievement in life.
The range of goods and services which can meet this noble aim really is very wide, but can be broadly grouped into those contributing to the three types of sustainability often mentioned on this blog: environmental sustainability, economic sustainability and societal sustainability. One of the primary reasons why our society is on such a dangerously unsustainable path at the moment is because the goods and services offered by business very often subtract from environmental, economic and societal sustainability. This has to change.
Businesses contributing to environmental sustainability include all goods and services that will allow consumers to conveniently gain their energy, food and wide range of other consumables in a more sustainable manner. This involves things like home renewable energy installation, organic foods and environmentally friendly transport mechanisms like e-bikes or electric cars.
Services promoting economic sustainability include any advisory service that might get people to save and invest consistently and borrow responsibly. Strategies for so-called downshifting can also contribute greatly to economic sustainability.
Finally, societal sustainability can be promoted through business by any advisory service that will free people from our current culture of consumerism and entitlement and promote a new culture of contribution and personal responsibility. Possibilities in this category include anything from life-skill training for the poor to personal health counseling for the rich.
Another interesting business idea I like to call a sustainable living information center (SLIC) is described here. Regardless of what you do, however, if you can leverage your business loan to make money in a manner which contributes to the sustainability of our society, you will be a real modern day hero.