The main reason that some people take opportunities when they arise, and others do not, is that some people are ready.
They have their business plan ready and all they need to do is take advantage of the opportunities.
Where can you find the right business plan?
If your business is based in the United States - click here
If your business is based in the U.K. - click here
Ideas To Action.
Part 14 - Finance.
Every business has to search for outside funding at some time or another. Funding your start-up business or securing the finance to expand your existing business could be a tricky, slow, operation; and you still might not locate or get the money that your business requires. Getting the proper funding in any economic climate can be difficult, whether you are seeking start-up finances, capital to grow your organisation, or money to carry on during the difficult times.
- The main source of funding for businesses are banks and credit unions. The most common source of business financing is the owners own pockets, but established sources such as banks and credit unions are next. That makes your provincial bank a good way to begin your search for financing for your business.
- Grants for a business are few and far between. There are very few small business grants out there and a lot of the grants that do exist spotlight specific groups, activities, or even areas of the country. However, there seems to be various grants available for businesses that may be linked to the arts, culture, recruitment, or to specific green matters.
- You have to write a powerful business plan. There is no way around this and no shortcuts; any financial institution that may seriously consider funding your company will need to review your business plan. This should introduce your numbers, such as your profits statement, cash flow forecast and your balance sheet.
- There has to be something in it for your lender. Your business plan has to validate this. If you are attempting to acquire financing, then it is self-evident that the lender will acquire a percentage rate of interest on their investment. Some financiers may require more involvement, demanding an ownership percentage or a say in the way your business is run. When you are creating your companies funding proposal you need to be aware of the type of lender you are attempting to tempt and tailor your business plan correspondingly to accommodate their needs and address their questions.
- Be ready to contribute financially. Having assets will help, particularly assets that investors will look at as collateral, but making a monetary contribution might be required to get the loan that you are looking for. Most government backed loans and grants are dependent on a contribution, generally of a fixed percentage of the total financing asked for.
- The size and age of your business matters. The size of your business is significant in regard to how much your financing will cost you. If you are looking for a loan for your company from a bank or a credit union, you are far more likely to pay an interest rate that is greater than 1.5% over the prime rate if you are requesting a smaller loan amount (under �100,000) particularly if you have revenues of under �500,000. You are also probably more likely to pay higher interest rates should you have a business with lower than twenty members of staff and / or you do not have ten years of suitable experience.
- Some businesses have a much tougher time getting finance than other organisations. As a result you are at a disadvantage if launching your business is thought to be more of a risk than businesses in other markets.
- You are your business from a financial point of view. Any flaws with your personal financial history, such as poor credit or a shortage of collateral, may knock you out of the running for funding altogether. It is vital that you straighten out your own financial record, for instance, repairing your credit rating, before trying to get business funding, albeit there are some small business funds available for those that might not have flawless credit ratings. If you do not have a credit history or assets because of divorce, because you are a recent migrant or because you are too young, or should you have a weak credit rating due to repayment problems, you may still find an investor that is willing to lend you the money you require.
- There is some financing available exclusively for women. There a few types of financing earmarked especially for assisting women to open and grow their business. If you are a woman seeking to open a business, or develop an existing business, loans are available; and perhaps the occasional small business grant.
- You do not need a fortune to launch a business. If you are seeking a start-up loan, think about how you could downsize your idea or break it into chunks so that you are able to get your enterprise open without a large infusion of third-party funds.
Some typical startup costs facing new business owners include:
- Electronic equipment: computer, printer, scanner, photocopier, etc.
- Furniture and fixtures: desk, lamps, bookshelves.
- Office supplies.
- Reference books.
- Supplies / inventory.
- Manufacturing machinery and equipment.
- Advertising: domain name, domain hosting, mailers, website design, etc.
- Operating Space.
- Corporation fees.
- Legal fees.
- Security deposit for renting a business location.
Ideas To Action - next
A Great Business did not just happen - It was planned that way.