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Adapting Your Business Budget After Coronavirus: 5 Tips To Get Back On Track

With the COVID-19 in full swing, you might have to compromise your business budget to stay afloat.

Karen Cruz
Karen Cruz

Having a business budget allows you to be in control of your company. It helps you track your financial goals and helps you refrain from overspending. But with the COVID-19 in full swing, you might have to compromise your business budget to stay afloat. Making modifications might be what you need to get your business budget back on track after the coronavirus situation.

5 Ways To Adapt Your Post-Coronavirus Budget

Across the country, many business owners halted operations and saw a decrease in cash flow due to COVID-19. As day-to-day operations return to normal and the states lift stay-at-home orders, businesses will need to make amends on their budget to cope up with the new normal.

These five tips below might help your business budget get back on track after the pandemic situation.

1. Consider The New Numbers

Chances are, your business has been impacted by the coronavirus in some shape or form. Maybe you had no choice but to temporarily close your business due to new regulations. Or, maybe you made the best out of a bad situation and came up with a creative way to keep your cash flow coming.

Whatever the case may be, your income has probably experienced some changes over the past few months. Because your cash flow may be different than what it was pre-coronavirus, now’s the best time to rework your business budget and do some much-needed tweaking.  

If you experienced a drop in income over the course of the coronavirus pandemic, you’ll need to account for that in your budget. And to help bounce back from the negative cash flow, you may need to make some sacrifices, such as cutting unnecessary expenses and reducing spending.

If your cash flow wasn’t negatively impacted by the ripple effects of COVID-19, you should still consider taking a look at your numbers to ensure your spending won’t exceed your income. Track your finances in your accounting software or books to see where you stand.

2. Employ Financial Forecasting

Wouldn’t it be great if we could predict the future of our businesses? Sure it would be. But unfortunately, we can’t. What we can do as business owners is forecasting when it comes to our budgets and cash flow.

If you’ve never heard of financial forecasting before, here’s a brief rundown. Financial forecasting can help you estimate your business’s future financial health by looking at past financial data and reports. Forecasts can help you estimate your business’s income, expenses, and more. Not to mention, they can develop projections for profit and loss statements, balance sheets, and cash flow.

Forecasting can get your business back on track financially and assist you with budgeting. And, it can help you alter your budget plan after coronavirus and better prepare for potential future emergencies.

3. Have Your Emergency Fund Reevaluated

Does your business have an emergency fund or cash reserve? According to one study, only 60% of individuals have at least $400 in the bank for emergency expenses.

Although business emergency funds can be tempting to dip into during non-emergencies, they are necessary for your business. The truth is, you never know what kind of emergency might strike your business. None of us entrepreneurs could have predicted this whole coronavirus pandemic. Heck, nobody could have.

If you have an emergency fund, great! There’s no better time to reevaluate your funds to ensure you’re all set if disaster strikes again. On the other hand, if you don’t have a fund in place, it’s time to giddy up and set some of your budget aside for the unexpected.

Take some time to create or rebuild your business emergency fund. If you didn’t have an emergency fund prior to COVID-19, build one as soon as possible so your business is prepared for the worst. The general rule of thumb is having a cash reserve that covers three to six months of expenses … so get saving!

4. Paying Back Debts Should Be Prioritized

A number of coronavirus loan options were established to help out struggling small businesses during the coronavirus. While some loans are forgivable, others are only partially forgivable, and some are not forgivable at all. Even if you weren’t able to receive a coronavirus loan, maybe you were forced to borrow funds due to the pandemic.

If you had to take out some type of loan or borrow money during the crisis, you’re not alone. And unless you got a fully forgivable loan (and are using the loan for eligible expenses), you may have racked up some debt.

To avoid being stuck in debt for many years to come, prioritize paying off your debt as soon as possible. Make room in your budget for extra loan and debt payments (trust me, you can make room if you need to). Of course, you should still make necessary business expenses and your emergency fund first priority in your budget. So, don’t push those aside just to pay off your debt sooner.

To help pay your debt off and get your finances back in order, focus on paying off one debt at a time and set an end goal.

5. Determine Your Financial Goals

If you’re like many others, the coronavirus has forced you to rethink your budget and what financial goals you should be working towards.

Take a look at your current financial goals and budget and ask yourself if they line up with each other. If you had to make some drastic changes to your budget due to the coronavirus, you may need to adjust your future financial goals to reflect that.

Your budget should reflect your priorities and financial goals. If it doesn’t, you may need to reconsider your goals and dig deep to think about how you can accomplish them.

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