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  • Dwight Brisendine

Topics Checklist for Starting Your Own Business

If you are considering starting your own business there are questions that will need to answered during your consideration. This article shows a checklist of topics to be thought through and discussed with your business advisor(s).


Why do you want to start a business?

• Characteristics of an entrepreneur / motivations

• Prices to be paid (not just money, but time, worry, etc.)

• What business do you want to start?


Organization types and taxation:

• Proprietorship

• Corporation – “C”

• Corporation – “Subchapter S”

• Partnership – General

• Partnership – Limited

• Limited Liability Company


Licenses and registrations:

• State

• County

• City

• Zoning limitations

• Business name

• IRS


Payroll and payroll taxes:

• Employees vs. contract labor

• Payroll taxes:

1. federal withholding

2. social security

3. medicare

4. state withholding

5. local tax

6. federal unemployment

7. state unemployment

• Employee benefits / total employment costs

• Estimating total personnel costs


Bookkeeping:

• For business management

• For taxes

• Systems

• Alternatives

• Financial reports and what they tell you


Revenues:

• Sources

• Estimated amounts

• Market research / Marketing program

• Sales Taxes


Direct expenses:

• Definition

• Types

• Equipment

• Relationship to revenues

• Calculating estimates

• Finding sources


Overhead expenses:

• Definition

• Categories

• Facilities

• Estimating


Financing Sources:

• Personal funds

• Family and friends

• Banks

• Angel investors

• Venture capitalists

• Through cash flows


Putting a formal business plan together:

• Mission

• Markets

• Marketing plan

• Equipment and fixed assets

• Organization

• Revenue

• Personnel

• Direct Expenses

• Overhead

• Funding requirements

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