6 Financial Planning Tools to Keep Your Business on Track

Business is a numbers game, but it’s comforting to know that you have some aces up your sleeve to keep your financial responsibilities from overwhelming you. Here are my 6 top financial lifesavers that should help to make your accounting a breeze:

1. Payroll Deductions On-Line Calculator

Brought to you by the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA), this deductions calculator will save you considerable planning time. Use this with your online banking system to ease the process and increase your financial vision.

2. Cost of Borrowing Calculator

Canada’s Office of Consumer Affairs provides us with a great tool for comparison of visa, line of credit and rent-to-own options. Determine your best option as you assess your options and reap the benefit of minimized borrowing expenses.

3. Financial Analysis Using Ratios

Comparing two aspects of your business is a great way of putting things into perspective as you assess your current and forecasted performance. Utilize this ratio analysis tool by comparing data for multiple consecutive periods to determine if your business’ performance is following a predictable course. Following and reacting to these trends is your first line of strategic defense.

4. Lease or Buy Calculator

A common financial decision that must be made dealing with business capital is whether to lease or own equipment. Take the second-guessing out of your decision by using this tool, which displays the comparative costs of both options while taking into consideration the tax implications and amortization.

5. Credit Card Payment Calculator

While many business owners may have used a credit card to support cash flow issues in the early stages, it is important to understand the impact of three different payment options to pay off your credit card balance. This calculator let’s you review the length of time it takes to reduce your balance to zero by either: paying a fixed amount each month, making the minimum payment plus an additional amount each month and if you only make the minimum payment each month. Whether in business or personal spending, this tool shares the importance of understanding your payment options.

6. Exchange Rates & Statistics

This site provides great statistics review information about monthly averages (last three years), annual averages (10 year lookup), and the NEW Canadian-dollar effective exchange rate index (CERI). The new CERI replaces the C-6 index as the Bank’s new measure of the value of the Canadian dollar against the currencies of the several common trading partners. The Bank of Canada website offers a standard source of information of various indicators used in many Canadian contracts for foreign purchased products but resold in Canada.

These are my most used financial planning tools, but I am interested to hear about any other free resources. Feel free to contribute your favourite financial tools in the comments.

Contact Mentor Works today to learn more about financial strategies that can help your small business succeed and grow.

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