How’s your cash position? Pointing out “no cash flow” is never an option, financial professionals who work with contractors encourage increased attention to management decisions vis a vis cash flow. Of course doing so requires having solid financial data and insights on hand. Here’s help.
Understand Your Position
Garry Bartecki of GB Financial Services encourages contractors to better understand their financial positions so as to lead the business toward ever better cash flow, pointing out: “This is the beginning of the year and no time to mess around. You still have time to get finances under control and budgets fully visualized for the year. You will love it and your banker will love it.” Specifically, in terms of managing a construction business, Bartecki advices having a solid handle on:
- Cost of materials
- Employee strength and weaknesses and cost
- Operating cost management
- Productivity opportunities
- Interest rates
- Access to minority-owned subsidiaries versus wholly owned subsidiaries
- Interest rates
- Cash flow budgets
- Bank covenants
With predictions about recession, inflation, material costs and the timing and impact of public infrastructure dollars spanning the gamut, some financial experts advise that 2023 is a good year for “Keeping fixed costs down…Outsource what you do not know…Rental is getting stronger because of the interest rates and cost of new machines….Being able to return a machine when no longer [needed] removes that cash outflow from…cash flow analysis.” GB Financial Services underscores the importance of really knowing your costs, noting:
The financial gurus keep talking about how inflation is slowing down when, in fact, the latest numbers overall are 5% over last year. That is on top of the already-high inflation that was present already. So, when they say inflation is slowing down or has stopped increasing, they mean it didn’t get any higher than it was already, and not that the inflation disappeared. You may want to check with your major vendors what they are expecting for 2023, and where their prices are now compared to what they were in 2020, 2021 and 2022. And, if prices are coming down, you had better check to see what you have in inventory and determine how you are going to use the information in your bidding process.
Remember too, Colonial Surety can arm you with financial intel and competitive advantages too, via the complimentary services of The Partnership Account® for Contractors. Once qualified, you can leverage The Partnership Account® to grow your business, strategically with:
- Control of bidding and bonding, online and in real time.
- Powers of attorney to seal and issue their own bid bonds—in minutes.
- Fast, direct, confidential bid bonds—no middleman.
- Direct access to performance and payment bonds on a customized dashboard.
- Real time tracking of bids and work on hand.
- Immediate access to Colonial’s lead underwriter as new opportunities emerge.
- A private Owner’s Dashboard to view surety lines, adjust work and analyze bids.
Good To Know
When writing bonds, underwriting experts want to see a strong cash position—so don’t undermine the growth potential of your business with hasty decisions during tax season:
taking too big a distribution from the company on the heel’s of strong earnings weakens the company’s cash position—and ultimately limits the capacity to secure bid bonds for larger projects. Tax advisors specializing in construction encourage a year round, “holistic” approach to planning, and point out that deferring income, a typical tactic to reduce tax payments, can backfire by hamstringing growth.
As you continue to think forward about growing your construction company, Colonial Surety is here to help with a surety line of credit and the value added business services of The Partnership Account® for Contractors. Once qualified, you will use our powers of attorney to issue your own bid bond—and you can do so right up to the last moment you need it. With Colonial, owners also have a private digital dashboard, providing a day to day snapshot of single and aggregate limits, as well as current and available bond capacity. As work in progress decreases, work on hand can be updated, increasing the aggregate. The result? Yes, you can go ahead and move that next bid ahead.
Let’s get you growing today: The Partnership Account®.
Founded in 1930, Colonial Surety Company is a leading direct seller and writer of surety bonds and insurance products across the USA. Colonial is rated “A Excellent” by A.M. Best Company and U.S. Treasury listed.