Did you know that 24 million Americans are veterans? That’s approximately 10% of the U.S. population, according to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Of those veterans, nearly one in 10 is a small business owner.
There are many theories about why veterans are more likely to start and run their own businesses. It’s been said that veterans are more inclined to be business owners because of their military service, their commitment toward setting and achieving goals, and their perseverance and willingness to take on great challenges.
We want to share a few tips on upfront planning and financial preparation, as well as a few resources available to veterans.
What to consider before starting and owning a business
One of the first considerations in becoming a business owner is to make sure you have a solid business plan. That includes researching your customers, your competitors and your industry and meeting with a banker and financial advisor to review projected cash flow.
Make sure you thoroughly research the startup costs for your business and have your financial plan reviewed by your financial advisor to ensure you have the funds needed for the first few years of operation.
It is critical to meet with a banker to understand your options before you take on credit. As a general rule, business owners should keep these credit practices in mind:
- Separate business and personal finances
- Keep business and personal credit records
- Track and maintain positive cash flow
- Develop a banking relationship
- Build a strong credit profile
Resources for Veterans
There are many resources available to assist veterans who want to start their own small business or become self-employed. Here are several places to start:
SBA.gov, is full of information and resources for veterans.
In addition, the SBA oversees federal loan programs that provide offers for veteran-owned small businesses.
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