Pulse May 2018 - Page 66

ASK THE EXPERT AMY MARTIN DUARTE, CPA BY KELLY HEITZ Finance and tax decisions can be a whirlwind for small business owners, especially small spa owners and operators who have a lot to juggle. For this month’s Ask the Expert, we spoke to spa finance and tax expert Amy Martin Duarte, cPA about the challenges small spas face and how you can effectively juggle it all. Martin duarte has dedicated a significant portion of her career to the devel- opment of financial and accounting programs designed specifically for the small business owner in a variety of industries. As a cPA at calvin Martin & company, she is responsible for the firm’s corporate and partnership tax, planning and compliance practice. talking daily. There are only two Pulse: What is one of the major certainties in life—death and finance mistakes you see small Hire and have good professionals taxes—and many small business business spas making and how working with you—attorneys, owners don’t prioritize the one do you suggest they fix it? bankers, accountants, and item that is the key to making Martin Duarte: Small business successful business decisions, spas tend to not have enough insurance brokers. These which is having the information working capital. No business individuals will be the key to readily available to make educated owner needs a line of credit in your long-term success. financial decisions. Make sure your good times, only in tough times, spa director is versed in financial though banks tend not to lend management and has P & L experience. during tough times. An owner’s best option is to apply for a How can an owner or director know how the spa is line of credit when they don’t need it, banks see a strong performing without having an up to date Profit and Loss financial statement and will open a line of credit. Once you Statement detailing all direct costs and variable expenses? How have a line of credit, it can be renewed each year and then the owner has the short term working capital when needed during can they make decisions on rent negotiations, adding a new the tough or slow times. product or retail line? Can they afford to invest in that great new machine to add a new high-dollar service? Can they get a loan for that machine? P: What can small business spa owners do to make the All these questions can only be answered when there is a finance side of their jobs easier? “financial photo” available. MD: Make sure they are up to date on their bookkeeping—I’m 64 PULSE ■ May 2018