Major debt puts a significant strain on small business budgets. Before debt starts to eat away at profits and becomes a significant problem for businesses, consider these helpful debt-reducing tips.
- Loan Terms – Renegotiate long-term loans, as many lenders are willing to discuss lowering interest rates, changing minimum monthly payments or extending longer payback periods for small businesses that have good credit ratings. Some lenders are even willing to offer one or two month business incentives to help simplify payback options.
- Pay Off Cash Advances – Cash advances are for emergencies so instead of forfeiting large percentages of future sales for several years, try to pay these off as soon as possible. Some cash advances may be tax deductible with fixed payments. It is best to check with an accounting professional for more information.
- Debt Consolidation – Debt consolidation takes all monthly payments and condenses them into one single payment with a lower interest rate. This is accomplished by taking out one loan and paying off all outstanding loans. This may require working with a debt consolidation company or financial planner to assess any risks that may be involved.
- Revenues – Analyze current expenses and identify areas that can be cut back. This may include cutting back on outsourced services and bringing them in-house. Excess inventory and unused equipment may also be sold for emergency cash. Reducing staff is usually a last resort, but employers cannot continue to operate if they do not have the cash funds to pay employees. Working capital loans are an excellent option for paying employees during difficult times.
- Sales – Businesses need to focus on sales, which includes investing in advertising. Maximizing sales helps businesses maintain a steady cash flow. Small businesses should take advantage of all types of marketing tools, including low-cost options, such as email advertising and social media. Consider running deals for loyal customers and subscribers, which encourages them to purchase more during transactions. Businesses can also research other market segments with advertising, which helps tap into a fresh audience, introducing them to services and products.
Planning and budgeting can help businesses affordably get out of debt, helping them decrease the large monthly payments that hang over their heads. Without debt, they can grow their companies according to their original plans and at the pace they desire.
Owning a small business can be fruitful and contributes to the American entrepreneurial spirit. To help continue this “American Dream,” small businesses need the support and access to necessary funds to help their businesses thrive during tough economic times.