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How to write a business plan, part 1: Finances

One of the first tasks a person who wants to start a company in Miami, Florida should undertake is writing a business plan, which provides guidelines and projections for the future of the company. As a critical part of this document, the U.S. Small Business Administration recommends creating a financial plan, which presents anticipated monetary resources and expenditures and how they will be recorded, usually covering a scope of three to five years. This section of the business plan provides guidance and a course of action, playing a major role in the future success of the company.

Developing an overview of the economy and the industry, and analyzing the market, can help a person to determine what the financial goals of the company should be so that resources can be allocated appropriately. These resources also have to be identified. Potential or known funding sources should be listed in the business plan, including whether the business will receive capital from investors, from loans or credit or some other means.

The Wall Street Journal provides a list of potential start-up costs to help a person determine the amount of money necessary to maintain the business until it becomes self-supporting. These include the following:

  •          Legal fees
  •          Marketing costs
  •          Location expenses, such as deposit, rent, utilities and fees
  •          Equipment and supplies
  •          Employee training and payroll

It is wise to plan for unforeseen or overlooked expenses in addition to those that can be provided in detail. Providing investors with comprehensive information in a financial plan can protect the company’s owner from future contract disputes and business litigation.

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