Financial Planning for Business Owners
Running a business is one of the most rewarding ways to make money, but it takes more than just a great product or service to make it work. Successful entrepreneurs know that running a successful business means having the right financial strategies. We’ll cover topics including:
Tax planning is an essential part of financial planning. Unfortunately, most business owners don’t tax plan until they must pay their first tax instalment to CRA, but if there’s a plan in place, this can significantly impact the amount of taxes your business pays.
Taxes are a big expense for many businesses. So first, consider the best tax structure for your business. There are three choices: sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation.
If you own a corporation, you will want to review these personal and business tax strategies to reduce your taxes. Personal strategies include employing lower-income family members to reduce your family’s tax bill or establishing an estate freeze to pay tax-free dividends. Corporate strategies include paying yourself to bring down your active business income to benefit from the small business tax rate, considering tax-deductible contributions to an individual pension plan or paying yourself dividends instead of salary.
Please book a meeting with us so we can discuss what makes the most sense for your business.
Attracting and Retaining Key Talent
You’re an entrepreneur. Your employees are your greatest asset, so you want them to be engaged and productive. To do this, you will need to offer them benefits that keep them satisfied and incentivize their continued employment with the company.
This could include providing group health benefits and a group pension plan. For key employees, you will also want to look at enhanced retirement benefits such as an individual pension plan to demonstrate you value them and their work.
Most business owners’ biggest asset is their business, and they keep most of their funds inside their business.
It’s essential to plan for retirement before you sell your business and hold assets outside of your business. However, managing investments as a business owner can get complicated – you want to make the most of them without accidentally triggering the passive investment income rules. That’s when we come in – we can guide you towards investments customized to suit your needs and goals.
Prepare for the unexpected for business owners; it’s essential to ensure the business is taken care of in case of disability, critical illness or death.
Disability insurance. If you become disabled, this insurance will help replace some of your income. It’s important to know that the benefits are typically paid out over time rather than in one lump sum—so it’s good to have an emergency fund set up just in case.
Critical illness insurance. This type of coverage pays out a lump sum (usually $100,000) if you were to suffer from a heart attack, stroke or cancer. The money can then be used for medical bills, rehabilitation services, or anything related to getting better—but it can also be used however else the insured person might need it most.
Life insurance can be used to fund a buy-sell agreement and cover any debts your business may have.
Life insurance is vital in funding a buy-sell arrangement for the company. A buy-sell arrangement can help keep your business running smoothly and can be set up to include the current shareholders.
Key person insurance is a form of life insurance that protects your company from losing a critical employee. If the key employee passes away, the policy allows for the payout to be secured, so your business continues to function.
If you’re planning on selling your business, getting the most for your business is essential. Consider the following:
- Keep the business going strong until you decide to sell.
- Gather important information, including financial statements.
- Review tax strategies, including the capital gains tax exemption.
Keep it in the Family: There are many reasons why keeping a family-owned business within the family makes sense—but it can be tricky if there isn’t any successor ready for takeover when needed. So first, look at your potential successor and determine if they are qualified to take over from you. Then, ensure you are on the same page as your successor, train and mentor, and slowly ease out of your role.
Like succession, retirement is something that every business owner must plan for at some point in their career. Think about what you wish to do in retirement and make sure you have enough funds to last for retirement. Finally, consider how you would like to leave a legacy to the next generation.