How to Survive Cash Flow Problems
Correctly managing cash flow should be a top priority for all small business owners.
If you’re not sure what cash flow really is, how to manage it or what to do if you end up with a cash flow shortfall, this article is for you!
Understanding Cash Flow
Cash flow represents the amount of money your business made, spent and then had left over within a given period of time.
You want to be cash flow positive, meaning you have more money coming in than going out. Companies that have cash on hand are able to invest back into the business and make even more cash and profit.
For example, if you have money left over after paying all of your bills you can then invest in equipment upgrades, building renovations, expansions and so on.
Tips for Managing Cash Flow
To correctly project cash flow you should do the following:
- Deposit all checks and payments immediately
- Find out when is the latest you can make a payment on all of your bills without incurring a penalty
- Invoice your customers frequently (every 15 or 30 days)
- Collect on all receivables within 60 days
- Streamline your inventory buying process (don’t buy what you can’t sell in a timely manner)
Managing your cash flow effectively will help you take control of your business finances once and for all.
Your Options to Survive a Shortfall in Cash Flow
If you’re facing a shortfall in cash flow you have a few options at your disposal:
- Ask for extended terms from your vendors
- Sell or lease assets such as machinery, computers, office furniture, etc.
- Take out a line of credit
- Apply for a working capital loan
If you have a good relationship with your vendors you may be able to negotiate a partial or future payment agreement with them. However, if you don’t want to jeopardize your vendor relationships, you can try selling or leasing some of your assets.
If selling off assets is not a viable option, you can try to take out a line of credit or a working capital loan.
Most banks will take weeks or months to approve a line of credit or loan. If you don’t already have one when your need arises, getting one in time from the bank likely won’t be an option.
However, here at ARF Financial we work with a network of banks on your behalf to get your application approved within 7 to 10 business days. A working capital loan or line of credit obtained through ARF Financial requires no collateral for amounts up to $725,000.
You’ll notice we didn’t even include a merchant cash advance as an option in our list. This is because a merchant cash advance may provide a short-term fix but will hurt your cash flow in the long-term.
When you take out a cash advance, the company typically purchases a fixed amount of your future credit card sales at a discounted rate of about 38%. The advance is paid back from a percentage of your daily credit card receipts until the full amount is paid back. The higher your sales, the quicker the advance is paid back. APRs can range from 50% up to 200%.
This is an option of last resort!
If you’re currently facing a shortfall in cash flow, or you want to be prepared in case you face one in the future, apply for a line of credit today!
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