The Partner That Ruined the Business

timthumbIf you have a business with a partner or partners you need a fully funded buy sell agreement. It should be set up before any partners pass away, become disabled or find out they have cancer, diabetes, or other ailments that can limit workable solutions. Doing so is not only cost effective but it provides peace of mind.

Why? Do you want your current partner’s spouse and children as your new business partners? Nice enough people, but are they qualified and willing at the drop of a hat to run the business?

Moreover, what will happen to the value of the business if something happens to a partner? A business valued at $5 million can quickly drop to $2 million without proper planning.

Then what happens when a partner passes away, the estate is valued incorrectly and the IRS comes looking for more then what was paid in estate taxes by the heirs? I’ll tell you. Litigation with the heirs.

And of course, divorce never happens to business owners. In all of these scenarios, doing nothing ahead of time is a bad business decision. I can’t tell you how many calls I’ve made to owners who don’t have fully funded agreements. They’ll say, “I’m all taken care of.” But when you look at what happens to many businesses after a life event, you realize they were just blowing me off.

The real blow off was on them. They blew off serious business planning they never even thought about because they were busy running the business. Fair enough. But they can’t do that or bury their heads in the sand because they still need to address the complex issues that arise when life events happen. Otherwise, like it or not, a business may be forced to close.
The main reason owners want to have the agreement fully funded is because for most businesses, using cash on hand, a sinking fund or financing through a bank loan may be undesirable or unavailable as a solution. Therefore work with the right team to provide the best funding solution.

Now after you set this up, get back to marketing and selling!

 

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Do a Quarterly Financial Review

470480e1gdwufwtHave you met with a professional and done a financial review lately? Every quarter I like to meet with my clients and go over any changes that have occurred in their lives. In many cases, the meetings give me the opportunity to find out what adjustments need to be made in their financial lives.

Life Happens

If there’s been a promotion, we may be able to increase the amount that is set aside for a rainy day or retirement. If there’s been a marriage or new birth, we need to make sure that family members have the right protection. If clients are no longer happy with their job, we need to map out a plan to find a new job or start a new business. Whatever the changes are, there’s a very good chance that my client’s financial life has been affected. I need to know that so we can tweak our prior plan.

Benefits of a Review

One of the major benefits that results from this quarterly review is that it helps my client feel comfortable letting me know what new things are going on in their lives. How? Some people may feel that they’re interrupting advisors. Scheduling a quarterly review sends a clear message that the changing circumstances are important. It also keeps the lines of communication open for events that happen between meetings.

One of the other benefits resulting from the meetings is referrals. Meaning, I get referrals for my business and my clients help those close to them. How? My clients have family, friends, associates and co-workers that need financial advice. Keeping the lines of communication open lets them know that they have a go to person in their financial life. Why not help others have that same peace of mind?

So if you’re working with an advisor, try to meet with them on a quarterly basis to go over what changes have occurred in your life and see how that can impact your financial life. Remember, the meeting may last a few minutes or hours but the impact can last a lifetime.

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