JANUARY 2015 | oregon beer growler 19
business is brewing
Financial Fitness Challenge for You and Your Business
By Courtney Mersereau
For the Oregon Beer Growler
usiness owners are some of my favorite
clients, especially those in the craft brewing
industry. They are determined, passionate
and, most of all, collaborative. However, they are so
willing to help others that the biggest issue I see is
that they don’t take enough time to think about their
own financial well-being. It’s common for business
owners to have much of their personal assets tied
up in the company, but many aren’t prepared for
what happens when the business actually starts
making money or, worse, when it doesn’t.
January is a great time for reflection, as well as
looking forward. And since you don’t really want
to go to the gym anyway, I’m challenging you to a
different kind of fitness challenge: Ten questions to
get you thinking about your current financial health.
Pay attention to any immediate feelings of anxiety or
stress that arise when thinking about the answers
to these questions. That’s a sure sign you’re overdue
for a checkup:
1. Are my personal assets diversified?
2. How much investment risk am I taking?
3. Do I have specific financial goals for 2015?
4. How much money will I need to retire?
5. What happens if I can’t work?
6. Interest rates are near zero. Am I managing my
cash to my advantage?
7. Is my family protected while I’m growing my
8. What type of retirement plan is best for my
business and how much does it cost?
9. Do I have a buy/sell agreement in place? How is
10. If I have an offer to sell my business, can the
sale price provide me financial stability?
Let’s talk about the eighth question – whether
you have the right retirement plan set up for your
business. First things first: why do you need one?
There are two primary motivations for setting up
a retirement plan for your business. First, you may
want to attract and retain the best talent by offering
a great benefits package. You can easily differentiate
your company from the competition by establishing
a robust 401(k) plan for your business and possibly
offering an employer match. The second reason
is to reduce your own tax bill. You can defer a
significant portion of your income into a retirement
plan before you pay tax on that income, where it
will grow tax-deferred and also create an asset
separate from the equity in your business. Many
business owners make the snap assumption that
these plans are expensive to set up and administer.
Thanks to technology and a more competitive and
transparent marketplace, this is no longer the case.
And doesn’t it make sense to spend a small amount
up front to save yourself thousands in taxes?
Also, take the time to develop a thoughtful
personal financial strategy that addresses the big
picture and provides a context for setting your
business goals. It’s easy to get wrapped up in
the daily operations of your business. However,
sustainable growth comes from thoughtful planning.
With a sound personal and business financial plan,
you’ll be able to keep the beer flowing as long as
is a financial advisor
at Springwater Wealth
Management where she
offers fee-only comprehensive
financial planning and
Business is Brewing is
written by B.I.N.G.
Members meet the third
Wednesday of each month.
Info at: bingoregon.
BRIEFS, From Page 12
Three Creeks Joins Can Revolution
Three Creeks is embracing the six-pack. The
Sisters brewery announced in late November that
it was releasing 12-ounce cans of Hoodoo Voodoo
IPA and FivePine Chocolate Porter. Knotty Blonde
will also soon be joining the new packaging plan.
Three Creeks says its decision to go to with
cans was an easy one since they better match
the outdoor lifestyle that’s so often associated
with Central Oregon. The brewery cited that the
new containers are light and can easily be taken
hiking, biking or skiing. Cans also don’t pose the
risk of breaking and exposing drinkers to shards
of glass. The different type of packaging also helps
protect the quality of the beer.
MINI KEG WRAPS