Getting Help with Your Finances

Most of us are in debt. We’ve got credit cards, loans, overdrafts, store cards, and car financing plans. Some of us even owe money to our utility providers and landlords. Even those of us that aren’t are cutting it fine. We want to save, we even open savings accounts, but find ourselves struggling to put any money in them. Many of us want to set up businesses and build home offices, but our financial situations won’t allow it.

But, just as many of us are doing nothing about it. We’re getting by paying the minimums back on our debts.We’re letting any savings that we do have just sit there, instead of finding ways to make them grow. We’re living paycheck to paycheck without taking the time to improve things.

This is often because we’re embarrassed. We don’t want to admit that we need help or that we’re in debt. We don’t want to ask for advice on how to save or make our money grow because we are ashamed to admit that we don’t know already or that we’ve been wasting our money up until this point. We are afraid of speaking to an accountant only to find that we’ve been recording our profits incorrectly and our small business accounts are in a mess. We bury our heads in the sand because we are embarrassed and afraid. But,there’s really no need to be. There’s plenty of help out there, and plenty of people that need it. You just have to make that first move. Here’s a look at some of your options.

Visit a Financial Advisor

If you’ve got debts, you might find that their repayments are crippling. That you’ve got very little disposable income each month because paying off your debts is eating it all up. It doesn’t need to be like this, but it’s so hard to see a way out when it’s your money.

A financial advisor can take a look at your situation and help you to find ways to improve it. They’ll look at your income and expenses and recommend consolidation loans or other options that could help. They can even help you to create a budget to manage your money.

Most banks offer a free financial advisor service. But, remember your bank is only likely to recommend their own products. You may have to pay to see an independent advisor, but you could be offered a wider range of options.

Get Help with Investments

Investing your money is a fantastic way to watch it grow. But, it’s complicated and confusing. If you’ve never invested,you might worry that you can’t because you don’t know enough. The good news is,you don’t even need to meet an advisor in person, read another option that’s great for beginners and novice traders.

Hire an Accountant

If you run your own business or work as a freelancer, you might try to manage your own finances to save money. But, it can be all too easy to make costly mistakes. Hiring an accountant can actually save you money. They’ll ensure you are claiming any tax deductibles that you are able, and they’ll make sure you don’t face a hefty fine because you’ve either missed your tax return deadlines or made a mistake in your working out.Read more about deducatbles at

Financing a Management Buyout – 4 Key Strategies

Management buyouts are financial transactions in which businesses are purchased by their management teams. It’s an exciting concept for a lot of managers because it allows them to use the experience they have in running a business on a day to day basis and apply it as an entrepreneur.

It’s a complex process and there are a lot of factors to be considered. For instance, the management needs to be ready to take on the new role and to have a clear idea of what the company will be like after they take over it.

One of the main things a new leader needs to consider is how to finance the buyout. It’s a long-term investment which means it needs to cover the costs but also leave enough cash to work with and handle day to day expenses.

Seller financing

Seller financing is exactly what it sounds like. The sellers provide the financing for the managers to buy their business out. This isn’t exactly the best option for the sellers and it’s usually used when there are no other options available – mostly when there are no buyers out there.

The price that’s paid right away is usually nominal, but there are other ways for the owners to be compensated. There’s a timeframe (ranging from 3 to 7 years) in which the new leadership of the company needs to return the money. This could be either a very comfortable option for the new owners or a quite difficult one, depending on how profitable the company will be after the buyout.

A bank loan

The most straightforward strategy for financing a buyout is the management taking out a bank loan and purchasing the company right away. It sounds simple but it also presents the biggest burden for the managers who will then be tied in with a loan for years to come.

It’s also important to note that acquisition loans work a bit differently than ordinary loans taken by individuals or even companies with a different purpose in mind. The buyers need to have excellent credit rating and provide proof that they’ve been paying taxes for years.

These loans are also sometimes backed by the government, especially if you’re buying a small company or one in an industry that’s supported by public funds (like green energy).

Private equity

In some cases, the management can use the services of a private equity fund to raise the capital needed for purchasing the company. It’s not suited to all businesses, because equity funding focuses on large transactions. However, it’s a straightforward transaction in which everyone knows why they are getting into it.

The equity funds are looking for a fast return on investment like with any other loan or stock purchase. These goals need to coincide with the goals and plans of the buyers. There’s usually a time frame within which the business needs to financially stabilize, and it’s rarely more than 5 years.

The business plan the managers create for their new company must reflect these deals as well. That way the new ownership can plan their obligations ahead of time and have a productive relationship with the private equity fund.

Assumption of debt

This strategy is only available to certain businesses and it’s usually combined with other funding sources. It can only work if the company has a significant amount of debt that it can’t repay. The new company, meaning its owners, will then assume a part of this debt when purchasing the company.

It usually isn’t the only way used to buy a business out, since no one wants to buy a business that owes more than it’s worth. Most of the time the managers buy a portion of the company using some of the aforementioned financing methods and the debts get deducted from that investment.

In these cases, the new owners need to have a detailed plan for the future of the company. There is usually some sort of pivot in terms of the products offered or the clients pursued, because the company needs to change the ways that have created the debt in the first place.

Financing day to day activities

Purchasing a company and running it on a day to day basis are two completely different things. It isn’t enough for the management to obtain the funds to buy the company out, they also need to run it and cover the expenses for the employees and contractors.

It’s best to get a line of credit for these expenses. With a credit line, a business has a certain amount of funds available, but they can borrow and pay interest on the amounts they need at any particular time.

There are different ways of approaching a management buyout. The main goal is to choose the financing strategy that’s best suited to the business at hand and the plans you have for it.


Guest author, David Webb, is a Sydney-based business consultant,online marketing analyst and a writer. With six years of experience and a degree in business management, he continuously informs the public about the latest trends in the industry. He is a regular author at BizzmarkBlog. You can reach him on Twitter or Facebook.

Don’t Let Your Business Go Under Without a Fight

bus_strengthAll small businesses encounter rough times and growing pains. But not all businesses survive the struggles. In fact, eight out of 10 new businesses fail.

So, how do you ensure that your business is among the two in ten that survive?

Check out these tips for keeping your venture going strong.

Invest in Insurance

According to the piece “4 Ways to Assure your Business Doesn’t Fold Under Pressure,” all business owners should verify that they’re properly insured. You can’t possibly predict what may go wrong with the venture.

A disgruntled employee could sue the business. An unhappy customer could also take legal action. Prepare for these and other unforeseen troubles by investing in insurance.

The exact forms of insurance that you should purchase depend on your business, industry and other factors.

Manage your Debt

Starting a business can be expensive. Unfortunately, business debt can far outweigh revenue during a business’s first few years and this is one factor that often causes new business owners to shut down their ventures.

Avoid this situation by managing your debt from the outset. Develop a solid idea of how much revenue you can expect during the company’s first few years and borrow funds wisely based on that sales forecast.

Start Forecasting

A smart way to guide your business toward future success is to start forecasting. This tactic involves tracking year-over-year sales data and forecasting week by week sales based on that data and other factors.

Encourage your employees to take ownership of the forecasting process and, if possible, have each department create individual forecasts that are combined into a company-wide forecast.

This data, including whether the previous week’s forecast was met, should then be shared at weekly company meetings.

Backup Your Data

How secure is your company’s information infrastructure? Wipe out the vulnerabilities by investing in solid backup programming and by making other IT changes. Lost data doesn’t just cause frustrations; it costs the company money, time and more.

The backup programming you choose should be based on your data load, industry and other factors.

Don’t Give Up

Owning a business means you’ll encounter a range surprises and problems daily, many of which you could have never predicted.

No matter what you encounter, don’t give up. When a problem arises, address it and, when you’re able, pause and take the time needed to work through it. But don’t ever let the option of quitting enter your mind.

Ask for Help

Not sure how to resolve your business’s increasing troubles? Don’t try to solve them behind closed doors. Rather, ask for help from your employees, mentors, a business coach and more.

By bringing the troubles into the open, you invite others to help you solve them. Also, don’t wait until the company is under immense pressure to ask for help. Involving others in the change process early is essential for keeping the venture afloat.

Don’t let your business be the next failed venture.

Be proactive rather than reactive by investing in insurance, managing your debt, backing up your data and more.

These and other steps can help your business to not just survive, but thrive.

About the Author: Shayla Ebsen is a freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of professional writing experience both in the corporate and freelance settings.

Make it Your Business to Know Financial Advice

Mathematics Resize If you’re looking to turn your financial savvy into a career, there’s no better way to do it than with financial literacy certification. With a financial literacy certificate, not only will you improve your knowledge about money matters, you’ll have the opportunity to teach others the same financial skills.

With dollars, cents, and money sense in mind, here are just a few reasons obtaining a financial literacy certificate is a wise move:

Learning About Budgeting

Creating a budget and actually managing that budget are two very different scenarios. Sure, planning your budget is the first step toward financial success, but actually putting your plan to work takes money management skills. A certificate in financial literacy will help you hone your budgeting skills and knowledge.

Financial literacy certificate programs teach you how to create and use a written budget.

In addition, certificate programs also teach you how to set budgeting goals so that you’re not only managing your money, but creating a financial nest egg at the same time.

Navigating Credit Scores

Millions of Americans are unaware of their credit score or how it affects their financial standing. A financial literacy certification can help you better navigate your credit as well as find ways to improve your score and overall credit report.

With a financial literacy certificate, you’ll have the tools and knowledge you need to not only find your credit score, but manage it by paying down your debt.

Because credit scores affect just about every aspect of your financial livelihood, equipping yourself with the necessary credit score knowledge will help you achieve financial stability in a debt-heavy world.

Managing Debt

Debt management is becoming increasingly important in today’s economic climate. As the country struggles to make ends meet, more and more Americans are falling into unmanageable debt. If you have even a small amount of debt, a financial literacy certificate can help you discover ways to manage that debt appropriately.

From credit card debt to past due mortgage payments, financial literacy certificate programs can teach you how to pay down your debt.

In addition, financial literacy programs also help with debt awareness, so you’ll know if you’re heading into unmanageable debt territory and how to reduce the money you owe through effective budgeting.

Gaining Banking Skills

Whether you need to save more money or learn how to make your money grow, a financial literacy certificate can help. Certificate programs will show you the difference between money market accounts, savings accounts, and ways in which your money can help you earn interest.

Likewise, many financial literacy programs teach helpful tips on how to safely invest your money. Nowadays, banking means more than just balancing your checkbook, which is why financial literacy is becoming increasingly important.

Becoming a Certified Financial Education Instructor

After you receive your financial literacy certificate, you can turn your passion for finances into a career by becoming a certified financial education instructor. As a certified instructor, you can teach others the financial knowledge you’ve obtained and help make the world a more financially savvy place.

When it comes to money matters, you can achieve financial success by becoming certified in financial literacy.

About the Author: Adam Groff is a freelance writer and creator of content. He writes on a variety of topics including finance and education.

Avoiding the Credit Card Trap While in College

It’s not uncommon for college students to be bombarded by credit card offers. The idea of having credit, of being able to buy something now and pay for it later is appealing to many.

However, it is important to avoid getting in over your head in credit card debt in order to preserve your credit rating and reputation in the future, especially as you leave the academic world to head into the business world.

According to a 2013 Fidelity survey of some 750 college graduates, the majority of grads were leaving school with at least $3,000 in credit card debt.

P&C Unit6C Slide 22

Choosing Credit Wisely

When looking at credit card offers, don’t sign up for every one that comes your way.

While it is good to have a credit card to establish a credit history, you need to limit yourself to one or two major credit cards. Avoid store cards and other special credit options.

Take the time to compare cards and interest rates. Make sure you get the best deal possible from the available offers.

Manage Credit Carefully

Once you have a credit card, be careful in how you use it.

Don’t buy things you really cannot afford, and only put items on it that you can pay off in full during the grace period. Experts advise that you never have more on your credit card than 30% of the total credit line.

The easiest way to prevent this is to figure how much you can afford to pay on your balance from your budget and only charge that much on your card.

Don’t Close Your Card

Don’t switch cards when a new one comes along with what sounds like a great deal.

When you close an account, you lower your credit score. It’s better to do your research and make sure you have a card you really like and stick with it.

Things to Remember

Avoid choosing a card that has an annual fee; those fees are just wasted money.

Try not to get cash advances with your credit card because they usually carry a higher interest rate.

Always make sure you pay your minimum payment on time. Late fees can add up and eventually ruin your credit rating if you are more than 30 days late. Pay on your card even if you can’t pay the entire balance. However, you should try to pay more than just the minimum amount.

Perhaps the most important thing to remember about credit cards and avoiding debt while you are in college is not to be swayed by the idea of extra money.

Just as a business owner wants to make sure he or she has the right payroll outsourcing system in place, those attending college should use those four years (or whatever time is required to get a degree) as a pre-cursor to running a sound financial life as they enter the business world and eventually think about planning for retirement.

Remember, credit is really just money that has to be paid back and if you pay interest, you increase the cost of whatever items you buy with your card.

That makes your good deal not such a good deal after all.

About the Author: Joyce Morse is an author who writes on a variety of topics, including SEO and finances.