Now that you have helped your budget during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, help your friends and neighbors who own our local small businesses by shopping locally.

It can be a refreshing change of pace to stroll into a locally-owned shop or restaurant and enjoy their personal, distinct flavor.

Now is a great time to try out some local small businesses for your holiday shopping needs. Afterwards, stop in for coffee at a local coffee shop or lunch at a locally-owned restaurant, and in the process, you will help create jobs, boost the economy and sustain our community.

Small businesses are not just for consumer goods and eating out. Many Approved Professional Builders, Remodelers, Specialty Contractors and professional service providers are local companies that play an important role in paying jobs, taxes and supporting our economy. Did you know that five percent of our nation’s economy is rooted in Home Building?

So when you are looking for someone to remodel your kitchen, refurbish your deck or build your dream home, take a look at the businesses based in our community to see what they have to offer.

According to the federal Small Businesses Administration, in 2015, small businesses nationwide created 1.9 million net new jobs and represented 99.9 percent of firms with paid employees. Our small businesses are invested in our community. They all have a deep interest in making sure the places we live are safe, clean, attractive and vibrant.

Nothing makes a bigger local economic impact than Home Building. Based on a study conducted for the Home Builders Association of Greenville, Home Building in 2014 created 7,795 jobs, $523 million in wages and business income and $53.5 million in federal, state and local taxes and fees. When small businesses like Approved Professional Builders succeed, we all succeed.