Financial Advice For The Self-Employed
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in 2015, 15 million people, roughly 10% of total U.S. employment, were self-employed.
If you fall into that category I recommend you find a Godly mentor or team who will answer questions, counsel you, and help you grow your business. Find people who know the pressure of setting goals, meeting financial needs, and keeping the company growing.
Budgeting is key, especially when your income varies month to month. Don’t let the term budget frighten you. It will serve you IF you are willing to do a little work.
Begin by underestimating your income and overestimating your expenses. Initially, create a bare-bones budget based on the lowest monthly income you have earned or might expect. Your expenses should be the basic needs necessary for survival. Add those up for the month and subtract them from your expected income. If your income exceeds expenses, build an emergency fund and begin funding tax and retirement accounts.
Keep precise records and study them frequently. Analyze your cash flow so you can plan ahead for lean months and know when to make large purchases. Bill often. Give great customer service. Barter when possible.
Carrie Smith Nicholson at CarefulCents.com recommends a 50/30/20 business budget: 50% goes to needs, 30% to wants and 20% to savings.
It is important that you delay the purchase of unnecessary items until the business is supporting you well. Do not be lured by the latest technology, new vehicles, clothes or accessories. Eating out for meetings should be limited to coffee or tea rather than full-blown meals when possible. Be frugal.
It is important to build a relationship with your bank. You will need several accounts: business checking, savings, and tax accounts in addition to your personal checking, savings, and retirement accounts.
Finally, give your business to God. Work as unto Him, delighting in Him with the opportunity each day brings to give Him glory.
Originally published on Handwriting on the Wall.