How do I survive until my business is off the ground?

Prepare a financial plan

Once you have gathered together all your key financial information such as estimates, overheads and expenses you can produce a financial plan.

The first step is to draw up a budget - a plan for spending and saving your money.

You should:

  • prepare budgets showing the level of sales and profits you expect to achieve, and the costs involved in doing so
  • estimate your total sales - see our guide on how to forecast and plan your sales
  • prepare monthly or weekly cashflow forecasts (which should be regularly updated), looking ahead one year - overheads such as rent can be accurately predicted
  • make sure you will have enough money on the day to cover each payment

Download a spreadsheet containing cashflow forecast, profit and loss forecast and sales forecast templates (XLS, 44K).

Once you have drawn up your budget, it is important to stick to it so you don't risk overspending or running out of money for essentials. The key to budgeting is maintaining simple but good records. You will need to keep track of where your money comes from and where it goes.

For more information on preparing a financial plan read our guide on budgeting and business planning.

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