Category Archives: Entrepreneur

Lets no forget about the other employee benefits…

With all the noise occurring about Health care reform, exchanges, dropping spouses, Metal plans etc… its easy to forget that employees have other needs besides health care.  These benefits do not have to cost you a penny, either.

4 out of 5 of your employees need Life Insurance- 30% of American Households have no life insurance at all, and 50% of those with insurance say they need more.  This is easily solved with an inexpensive  group life insurance policy.  You can give your employees the change to buy up to $300,000 of life insurance for very little cost.  As an example, one of my clients has a plan that a 40 year old employee can get $100,000 of life coverage for only $5.08/week!

Combine the entire population of Florida and California… and thats how many people are disabled at any one time!  And 35 million Americans are “severely” disabled today.   You can help your employees by offering a short and/or long term disability policy.

90% of working Americans would seek legal services for even small legal situations – except cost is a major hurdle.  You can solve that with a legal protection plan for your employees.  For as little as $4 a week, your employees can get assistance and access an attorney on Family, auto, estate, financial and home legal issues.

There are plenty more examples, and its easier for the employer to solve the problem than it is for the employee.

Small Business Should Join the SHOP Exchange!

You may be missing out on a great deal if you are a business under 50 employees and DO NOT join the exchange… at least in 2015


1- Employers have to pay part of the premium, in most cases at least 50%

2-  Employee contributions are only deductible to them if they hit 10% of their income (and most people don’t have enough expenses to itemize, anyway)

3-  While the premiums paid by the employer are deductible there is no Tax Credit


1-  Employers are not required to pay a penny.

2- Employees may be eligible for a “Premium Tax Credit”, AKA a subsidy.   They get cheaper premiums.

3-  IF the employer pays 50% of the premium, you may get a Tax Credit as well as the deduction.


If you are currently providing coverage for your employees – We need to evaluate your options under SHOP

If you are currently ALLOWING your employees to get dependents covered, but not paying anything towards it – consider DROPPING dependents all together.  They can get a subsidy under the Exchanges, but only if their spouses insurance does not allow dependent coverage!

If you are not offering coverage –  and your employees generally are above 400% of the Federal Poverty Level, sign up for SHOP and make sure your employees know about the potential tax savings

If you are not offering coverage – and your employees generally make less than 400% of the FPL – sign up for Shop and make sure your employees understand about the subsidy.

Should your small business change to Self-Funded Insurance?

Double Digit increases are coming under Health Care Reform, or the inappropriately named “Affordable Care Act.”  There may be something you can do about it.

The issue is that, under community rating, your firm will pay the same price as everyone else, even if your group is young and healthy.  But what if you could prove your team is healthier?

If you have 25 or more employees, self-funded insurance may be the right way to go.  It is the only way to get a lower rate – but you have to PROVE your company is healthier than the norm.


Note-  There is a movement underway within the administration to try to take away this option for small businesses as well.  According to an article published in the Wall Street Journal on Thursday 9/12, “liberals” are trying to change the ERISA regulations which allow this, push state legislatures to ban stop-loss policies for small groups, and by other methods.


Here is how it works:

First, every eligible employee has to fill out a medical questionnaire – even if they are waiving coverage (Because they could come on later).  The insurance carrier will underwrite your group and give you a rate.  If it is better than the fully-insured rates, then you go ahead.

You will pay full premium throughout the year, and it will look and feel like “normal” insurance.  However, each month you will get a claims report, showing how much is being paid out by the company (using your money).  At the end of the year, if you have a balance in the claims account (usually you will) – you get some, or all, of that money back!

There are alot of technical little things you would have to get educated about, but it can work for you.

Cash Flow Management

An underappreciated fundamental in financial planning.

Provided by Reeve Conover

You’ve probably heard the saying that “cash is king,” and whether you own a business or not, it is a truth that applies. Most discussions of business and personal “financial planning” involve tomorrow’s goals, but those goals may not be realized without attention to cash flow today.

Management of available cash flow is a key in any kind of financial planning. Ignore it, and you may inadvertently sabotage your efforts to grow your company or build personal wealth.

Cash flow statements are important for any small business. They can reveal so much to the owner(s) and/or CFO, because as they track inflows and outflows, they bring non-cash items and expenditures to light. They denote your sources and uses of cash, per month and per year. Income statements and P&L statements may provide inadequate clues about that, even though they help you forecast cash flow trends.


Cash flow statements can tell you what P&L statements won’t. Are you profitable, but cash-poor? If your company is growing by leaps and bounds, that can happen. Are you personally taking too much cash out of the business and unintentionally letting your growth company morph into a lifestyle company? Are your receivables getting out of hand? Is inventory growth a concern? If you’ve arranged a loan, how much is your principal payment each month and to what degree is that eating up cash in your business? How much money are you spending on capital equipment?


A good CFS tracks your operating, investing and financing activities. Hopefully, the sum of these activities results in a positive number at the bottom of the CFS. If not, the business may need to change to survive.


In what ways can a small business improve cash flow management? There are some fairly simple ways to do it, and your CFS can typically identify the factors that may be sapping your cash flow. You may find that your suppliers or vendors are too costly; maybe you can negotiate (or even barter) with them. Like many companies, you may find your cash flow surges during some quarters or seasons of the year and wanes during others. What steps could you take to improve it outside of the peak season or quarter?


What kind of recurring, predictable sales can your business generate? You might want to work on the art of continuity sales – turning your customers into something like subscribers to your services. Perhaps price points need adjusting. As for lingering receivables, swiftly preparing and delivering invoices tends to speed up cash collection. Another way to get clients to pay faster: offer a slight discount if they pay up, say, within a week (and/or a slight penalty to those that don’t). Think about asking for some cash up front, before you go to work for a client or customer (if you don’t do this already).


While the Small Business Association states that only about 10% of entrepreneurs draw entirely on their credit cards for startup capital, there is still a temptation for an owner of a new venture to go out and get a high-limit business credit card. It might be better to shop for one with cash back possibilities or business rewards in mind. If your business isn’t set up to receive credit card payments, consider it – the potential for added cash flow could render the processing fees utterly trivial.1


How can a household better its cash flow? One quick way to do it is to lessen or reduce your fixed expenses, specifically loan and rent payments. Another step is to impose a ceiling on your variable expenses (ranging from food to entertainment), and you may also save some money in separating some or all those expenses from credit card use. Refinancing – if you can do it – and downsizing can certainly help. There are many, many free cash flow statement tools online where you can track family inflows and outflows. (Your outflows may include bugaboos like long-term service contracts and installment payment plans.) Selling things you don’t want can make you money in the short term; converting a hobby into an income source or business venture could help in the long term.


Better cash flow boosts your potential to reach your financial goals. A positive cash flow can contribute to investment, compounding, savings – all the good things that tend to happen when you pay yourself first.


Reeve Conover can be reached at 877-423-9990 or at


This material was prepared by MarketingLibrary.Net Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. Please note – investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All indices are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment.



1 – [11/19/12]




Defunding ObamaCare? Why?

It doesn’t matter much what Congress does, or says, about ObamaCare.  And no, defunding it won’t happen, and even if Congress passes it, it won’t matter.

There – I said it.  Out loud.  Does anyone inside the beltway really think that “defunding” the process can change it, less than three weeks before enrollment?  The insurance industry has spent billions on modifying software, hardware, people and systems – all to comply.  Venture capitalists and private investors have invested billions into forming new companies authorized under the law, and building exchanges with private dollars.  Hundreds of Thousands of jobs are tied up in Co-ops, exchanges and new health care companies around the country.  None of this will be reversed.

Americans everywhere – while they don’t like the law they don’t understand – anxiously await the ability to finally get insurance even through they have diabetes, cardiac issues, and cancer.  Oh, and eczema – which my grandaughter got turned down for by Blue Cross at the age of 3.   Health Insurance Reform is finally about to be here.

And while the law is a mess – we still don’t have rates for the exchanges in many areas, for example – it is the law.  It has been the law for four years, and finally the few parts of it that are good are about to occur.

It is far too late to “cancel” things, to “defund” things.  There are no do-overs in the real world. It is here, and the time for all this was four years ago, or perhaps before it was passed.  Perhaps our lawmakers would be better served by trying to get a bipartisan coalition to fix the bad things – the employer mandate, the cadillac tax, the unfunded mandates, the unnecessary benefits that are driving increases, the elimination of the high deductible plan.  Perhaps they could focus on the things they missed – tort reform, reducing malpractice costs, and aggressive fraud prosecution come to mind.

Only, that might not get votes and appease the fringe elements in both parties.  So instead we have political theatre to distract us from how badly Congress and the Executive Branch- both parties- has performed over the last four years on this issue.

It might even be entertaining, assuming I had any time to enjoy it!

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Reeve Conover is a Registered Representative. Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a Broker/dealer member FINRA/SPIC. Cambridge and Conover Consulting are not affiliated. Licensed in SC, NC, NY, CT, NJ, and CA. - SIPC - Brokercheck