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When Can I Start To Pay Myself?

When Can I Start To Pay Myself?
As a small craft business owner, it's essential to balance the financial needs of your business with your personal financial goals. One important question that often arises is when to start paying yourself. While there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, there are a few things to consider before you start taking a salary.

Firstly, it's important to understand the financial health of your business. Before you can pay yourself, you need to ensure that your business has enough cash flow to cover your expenses. It's recommended that you have at least three months of personal living expenses saved up and a solid business emergency fund in case of unexpected expenses or slow periods.

Next, you need to determine your role in the business. Are you the sole owner, or do you have partners or employees? If you're the sole owner, you have more flexibility in deciding when to pay yourself. However, if you have partners or employees, you need to consider their compensation as well. In this case, it may be best to set a consistent pay schedule for everyone involved.

Once you've established the financial health of your business and your role in it, you can start to consider when to pay yourself. The general rule of thumb is to wait until your business is profitable before taking a salary. Profitability means that your sales are more than your expenses, and you have a positive cash flow. It's recommended that you wait until you've consistently been profitable for at least three months before taking a salary.

When it comes to deciding how much to pay yourself, it's important to be realistic. As a small business owner, you may have to wear many hats and perform multiple roles, so your salary may not be as high as it would be in a traditional job. It's also important to factor in taxes, as you'll be responsible for paying both self-employment tax and income tax on your salary.

Another factor to consider is reinvesting in your business. While it may be tempting to take a large salary, it's important to remember that your business needs money to grow and thrive. Consider reinvesting some of your profits back into your business to purchase more inventory, improve your website or marketing efforts, or hire additional help.

In summary, there is no set timeline for when a small craft business owner should start paying themselves. It's important to establish the financial health of your business, consider your role in it, and wait until you have consistent profitability before taking a salary. When determining your salary, be realistic and factor in taxes, and consider reinvesting some profits back into your business for future growth. With careful planning and consideration, you can ensure that your personal finances and your business finances remain balanced and healthy.