Too often, business owners invest all of their assets into their business instead of diversifying their portfolios. Of course, personal and business finance can overlap, but they should be treated very differently. Before you get too set in your habits, it’s crucial to learn some personal finance tips for small business owners to secure your future.
Financial Tips for Small Business Owners
Unbalanced investing happens in big and small companies alike. Stock options or stock purchase programs at larger corporations promote investing heavily in the company, sometimes at the expense of a leader’s personal finances. If unbalanced investing can happen to hotshot corporate leaders, it can also happen to small business owners that go all-in with their business.
Here are some personal finance tips for small business owners to consider.
- Build your savings. Looking at your historical spending, you should have an emergency cash reserve of at least three months’ expenses. Six months would be even better. This should be money that is easily accessible in case of emergency, not tied up in investments.
- Control your credit. Your personal credit score matters as much as your business credit. Keep your spending below 30% of your overall credit limit and pay all your bills on time.
- Prepare for the worst. You need insurance to protect yourself and your family if disaster strikes. Arrange for a quality life insurance policy, specifically term life insurance, to protect your family at a reasonable cost. It’s also crucial to invest in long-term care insurance in your forties. If you wait until you need it, you won’t be able to afford it.
- Get your house in order. Sometimes, personal finance tips for small business owners neglect to consider what’s happening at home. Know how much money is going out and coming in each month. Track all spending for you and your spouse, then develop a budget to rebalance any problem areas.
- Think about the future. Do you have kids? If so, it’s wise to invest in 529 college plans while they’re still young and you can grow those investments from the compounding of interest and reinvested earnings.
- Play it safe. It’s good to have a strong base of conservative investments before taking chances on risky stock tips from friends or acquaintances. It can be exciting to play the stock market, but you’re bound to lose big if all of your ventures are risky. I recommend using low fee investment firms like Schwab, Vanguard, and Fidelity.
- Ask for help. Getting help is one of the most important personal finance tips for small business owners. A financial advisor can work wonders for showing you where your money should go. Don’t be too proud to consult with an expert, especially if you’re putting money into your business and not getting as much in return.
In some regards, financial planning for business owners is very similar to sound financial planning for any individual. If you make sure that all of your bases are covered, you can feel free to invest back in your own business without worrying about affecting your personal finances.
Are you interested in discussing more personal finance tips for small business owners with a qualified business coach? Fill out my contact form for a complimentary video meeting, and we can talk about your strategy.