August 16, 2016

Besides having a coffee shop business plan, you need to have your funding source(s) defined when starting a coffee shop. There are many options available for you, but we will talk about the most common.

SBA – So many sources push SBA loans, SBA LOANS, SBA LOANS! Let me first say, the Small Business Administration loan program is awesome, if you can get approved. Although they have loosened up some of the requirements lately, it is still somewhat tough to get approved.

First of all, the government does not loan the money. The standard program is a bank loan though there are some micro loan programs available that use funds from capital groups. Most of these loans are normally collateral loans, and they are backed by the US government similar to HUD and FHA home loans. What that means is that if you should happen to default on the loan, the government will reimburse the bank for certain percentage of the loan amount. That is good for the bank, and good for you if you can qualify for one of these loans. They are tough to get I’ll say again, and there is a lot of paperwork to fill out and file. You also have to have good credit, very good assets, low debt to income ratio, and unencumbered collateral.

Some SBA loans can take some time to get approved and then funded, but if you are approved, they usually have up to a 7 year repayment period and a favorable interest rate. It’s best to talk to an approved SBA lender for particular details, as the bank calls the shots, the SBA only backs the loan. You can work with a local SBA office as well for details or go to http://www.sba.gov

Personal – This is the easiest form of financing, but less likely for most people. Try to put all you can into this venture from your own pocket without ruining your marriage, family or jeopardizing your home. If you do get financing, you will be required to pitch in at least 25% of the total you need to start your coffee shop anyway. The more you have in, the more the bank knows how serious you are and more likely they are to fund you. They also know the more you have in personally, the less likely you are to run when the times get tough.

Cash is king. Liquid assets are a great source of funding. Liquid assets are assets that can be converted to cash quickly like stock, bonds, or a 401(k). I only recommend any retirement plan as funding as a last resort. This is what I did when I ran into capital problems and could not get a loan because I was maxed out. It’s best though to leave this money alone and search out other options.

Real estate equity – This is a good source of funding if you have enough equity in your home or another piece of real estate. The …

When you were a child, were you inspired by stories of knights, supermen and courageous men and women who did wonderful things and changed the world around them? They were your heroes. You looked up to them, didn’t you? And you admired them and read stories about them late into the night? Weren’t you inspired by their courage and hoped you could grow up brave and strong? Weren’t you thrilled by their exploits and their charisma?

What about now? Who are your heroes? Are they baseball champions or Olympic swimmers? Or are they perhaps explorers and adventurers, crossing the North Pole single-handed or rowing the Pacific in a two-man boat?

What does it mean to be a hero? Is it someone fulfilling an ambition at great personal and physical struggle or is it someone doing something for the good of mankind? And why do we all need heroes – what is it that inspires us about certain people and makes us hold them up as examples of greatness?

The truth is that we look up to people who make a difference to our lives while at the same time overcoming personal struggle and hardship to achieve that goal. We admire their bravery and dedication; we aspire to be as courageous and focused as they are to achieve what they set out to do.

So being a hero isn’t necessarily about achievement only. It’s the effect that their achievement has on the rest of us and what we can learn from the struggle and hardship they underwent. They are what we could call exemplars – they are people who demonstrate high standards of character and dedication and who inspire us to achieve the highest that we can in order to emulate them.

However, being a hero isn’t always front page news or the stuff of films. Being a hero can mean working all the hours under the sun and earning enough to send your children to college so that they can have a better future than you had at their age. It can be as simple as making sure that the elderly people in your area are always warm and well fed, or dedicating yourself to improving community amenities and overcoming all the obstacles that get thrown up in your path.

So you can achieve great things like win an Olympic gold medal by being fast on your feet and become an icon. Or you can achieve great things through strength of character and perseverance, and become a hero. You can doubt your ability to complete the journey, but having the strength of character and purpose to overcome your own fears about completing it – that’s the stuff of heroes.

That’s what inspires others – that you falter and doubt your ability to carry on, but that you then pick yourself up again stronger than before, doubly committed to your goal, and you press on to the end.…