The Ledger | Third Quarter 2016
Date:25 October, 2016
How to Turn a Business Plan Into a Powerful Financing Tool
A business plan plays a key role in allocating resources throughout a company. It is a vital aid to help you manage your business more effectively, but it is also a document to help secure funding. A good business plan reveals how you would use a bank loan or investment. Whether yours is a new business or an existing business in the process of expanding, here are four points financiers are looking for when reading your business plan:
- The Facts. The problem, your solution, the market size, the competition, how you will sell your product or service, and how you will stay ahead of competitors. Stick to the facts and any pertinent information.
- The Team. Who else is involved, and to what extent. A plan should present hard evidence of a team that knows their business. A strong team can minimize risk.
- The Balance Sheet. Record your assets, liabilities and capital. Existing companies show a starting balance as a result of all past activities. Startups need a balance sheet that reflects starting capital, early startup expenses, assets either purchased or still to be acquired, and existing liabilities.
- Financial Projections. The financial projections you include in a business plan should be realistic and show how you anticipate your business growing. It should showcase how the company will produce enough income to justify the bank's risk. It should provide proof that you’re going to hit the ground running—or that you already have.
You can maximize your chances of success by adopting a continuous and regular business planning cycle that keeps the plan up-to-date. Looking to review your business plan with one of our loan officers? Stop by your local branch or contact us at 800-467-7216.
Preparing Your Finances for a Natural Disaster
Between the recent floods, hurricanes and fires, Americans have faced Mother Nature's fury quite a bit this year. Nobody knows when a natural disaster can strike. That is why it is imperative to plan for how a natural disaster may affect your finances. Here are a few ways to prepare for an event you hope will never happen.
Setup an Emergency Fund. Natural disasters are just one of the reasons to have an emergency fund. It enables you to have quick access to money for repairs and to get you back up on your feet. It also provides peace of mind. Want to know how much money you should have saved in your emergency fund? Click here to learn more.
Ensure your insurance policy covers what you need it to. Very few homeowners actually know what their policy covers. It is important to review your policy to determine whether you have adequate coverage. In particular, make sure you have flood insurance, as it one of the most common claims that is not covered by basic homeowners insurance.
Have Cash on Hand. It’s a good idea to have enough cash in the house to handle necessary purchases until power is restored—generally about $200-$300 in small bills. Sometimes it is hard for businesses to make change following a natural disaster.
Take Inventory of Your Belongings. Preparing a list before something happens is easier than trying to write a list from memory later. The Texas Department of Insurance provides an easy to use document to keep track of your belongings. You can access it by (*See footnote near bottom of page BEFORE clicking the link) clicking here. It is also a good idea to take a video of your home on a yearly basis to serve as additional proof and documentation.
Agency Accounts Help Manage Your Financial Future
Is life getting in the way of managing or setting up important investments for your future? An agency account allows you to allocate responsibility for your investments to be professionally managed and to ensure your financial obligations are met in a timely fashion.
Texas Gulf Bank offers this investment service to assist our customers with managing their financial future. Setting up an agency account involves a simple agreement where you provide assets to be invested and agree to specific services provided by Texas Gulf Bank’s investment experts for a fee. The extent of the services provided can vary from simple account record keeping, to providing investment advice, to managing the account completely and making investments on your behalf.
A Texas Gulf Bank investment manager will meet with you to determine your goals, your timeline and your expectations. They will introduce factors such as risk tolerance and income tax considerations and help set up your individualized plan of action. Depending upon your agreement, they can manage the account completely or be available to help you manage the account. The flexibility afforded by an agency account is essential to making the process beneficial to a wide variety of investors.
Want to learn more or speak with a wealth management specialist at Texas Gulf Bank about setting up an agency account? Contact us at 800-467-7216.
NOTICE: Wealth Management Department Investments include non-deposit investment products that are:
- not bank deposits
- not FDIC insured
- not insured by any federal government agency
- not guaranteed by the bank
- may decrease in value