Small-business owners often find that they need a fair amount of stuff — from office equipment to an actual office — to start a company. But that doesn’t necessarily mean they have to purchase everything outright. But when should you lease vs. buy? The answer depends on your needs, budget, and goals. Here are the [...]
Natural disasters — fires, floods, sinkholes, hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, tidal waves, swarms of locusts, or worse — have affected more than 30 percent of U.S. businesses. So while they may sound rare, the odds are fairly high that your small business will one day square off with Mother Nature. When it does, she’ll likely cause short-term disruptions and [...]
The “sunk cost” thinking trap snares many unwary entrepreneurs: It springs shut the moment you devote additional resources to a project just because you’ve already invested some. Simply put, a sunk cost is money, time, and/or energy that you’ve already expended and can’t get back. These costs are important and tricky, because when making decisions many [...]
Have you considered expanding your business’s market reach by exporting your products to other countries? Exporting goods can help you tap into emerging markets and avoid the drop in profits that often comes when the U.S. economy staggers. Many small businesses are crossing borders: According to a new survey [PDF] from the National Small Business [...]
Attorneys are expensive, especially for startups and early stage businesses. Some situations, such as defending a lawsuit or negotiating complex contracts, call for an attorney — and the costs of hiring one pale in comparison to the potential losses you may otherwise incur. Other matters, however, are straightforward enough that you can probably handle them on [...]
How much money does your company have available right now? That’s a question your cash flow statement can answer.
Small-business owners who get turned down for a loan often blame the lender. Yet, more often than not, the owner is primarily at fault, because he or she went about borrowing money all wrong. Loans are a lot like marriage proposals; you ought to be fairly sure of acceptance before you ask. Here’s how to [...]
The U.S. Small Business Administration is increasing the maximum size of a company that may qualify for small-business status in 70 different industries. In about a third of those industries, the average annual revenue size standard was increased from $7 million to $35.5 million. The new standards, which vary by business type, take effect on July 22. [...]