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For most small businesses, financing can be a challenge. Whether you need bridge capital to keep the business running in tough times, or structured debt for long-term growth, it pays to have a strategy for seeking out those elusive financing dollars. Statistics Canada found that just over half (51.3 per cent) of businesses requested external financing in 2014.

Equity-based financing options like venture capital often make the headlines, but less than one per cent of small businesses requested this in 2014. Debt-based financing is far more common, as is trade credit from suppliers.

Here are five financing options to turn to, depending on the type of small business you run, and its situation.
BOOTSTRAPPING
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 As a small business owner, there may be nothing more important to To get a handle on your company’s future cash at hand, several tools are available to help you analyze projected income and expenses. They range from rudimentary spreadsheets to slick visualization apps. Here are five tools that can help you forecast your figures.

Templates
For some, there’s nothing like rolling up their sleeves and getting their hands dirty with an Excel spreadsheet. If this is you, here are some templates you can use to get you started. Futurpreneur Canada provides a cash flow template that will cover everything from outlining startup costs through to projecting cash flow month by month for two years.
SCORE, a network of business mentors created by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), has its own cash flow and financial projection templatesto help project cash flow over a 12- month or three-year period.
Each of these sites offers its own handy guide to get you started with your cash flow forecast template, so that even business owners without ninja accounting skills can get a handle on things. The best part? It’s all free.

QuickBooks cash flow projector

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 The philosophy behind the proposals is to “level the playing field” and the example given in the summary overview is an individual living in Ontario and earning a salary of $220,000 versus his neighbour who earns the same amount through a private corporation and is able to reduce taxes through income sprinkling.

What is omitted is the couple, each spouse earning $110,000, which pays less in tax than their neighbours where one spouse earns $220,000 and the other spouse has no income. The issue is, of course, progressive tax rates which mean that the more you earn, the higher the rate of tax paid, not just the amount paid. In the U.S., couples file joint returns so there is no need for income splitting, unlike Canada.

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 Both Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau have stated that the government’s private-corporation tax proposals will not affect businesses earning less than $150,000 a year. But one of the coalitions opposing the changes says that two-thirds of Canadian small businesses earn less than $73,000 a year, and that the proposals will hurt the majority of these middle-class business owners. How to make sense of these different analyses?

The government’s package has three parts, one of which — and the most contentious — involves passive investments, such as mutual funds, held by Canadian-controlled private corporations (CCPCs). At present, a CCPC pays immediate tax of 50 per cent on its investment income. Under “tax integration,” a large portion of this tax is refunded when the CCPC pays dividends to its owner. As a result, there is generally no further net personal-corporate tax when dividends are paid

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Many small businesses do their own bookkeeping. And why not? Initially, when your business is small, the bookkeeping is quite simple.

But what are the things you should look out for when you’re managing your own books?

Ensure Your Bank Accounts and Credit Cards Are Reconciled

This may seem foundational, but in my experience, this critical step is often ignored. It’s one of those important, but not urgent tasks that always seems to fall to the bottom of the to-do list. The purpose of a bank reconciliation is to ensure that all of the transactions on the bank statements are captured. This is a critical step to ensure accuracy of these bank accounts and credit cards.


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