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    5 Replies Latest reply on Jan 20, 2009 9:27 AM by Lighthouse24

    Is this the BEST time or WORST time to start a business?

    NoBullFunding Scout
      I've been thinking about this question, and can see both sides of the argument.

      Reasons to not open a busness right now: The economy stinks, nobody is buying anything, credit is restricted, and your retirement savings probably has already taken a hit so losing any more money could be a death blow to your retirement.

      Reason to open a business: Landlords are desperate for tenants and will cut great deals to get you in, wholesalers may willing to negotiate, and used equipment and fixtures are available for dirt cheap due to so many stores failing.

      What do YOU think?
        • Re: Is this the BEST time or WORST time to start a business?
          DomainDiva Ranger

          New businesses that help the upper end client save money and are ecologically friendly, if marketed right will do well. Our service is an example since we are geared towards the leasing companies that own the paper on heavy aircraft and are increasingly becoming more responsible for retaining a master set of current records on the aircraft for oversight and to protect themselves in cases of bankruptcy or other malfeasance by the operators they lease and lend to. While we have not formally launched, we have a huge interest in the application and people are calling asking when it will be ready.

          With all of the Wall Street scandals, the upper end has been hit hard as well. An honest financial advisor would do well. I wonder if SCORE has any help available?

          Would I start a retail clothing or gift business or a restaurant? No way!

          Advertising and marketing? Absolutely. The competition for buyers is intense, a good advertising agency will be able to show a new client struggling to stay afloat how to maximize the message for the best dollar value. Especially if the agency is small or free lance.

          Airline? After 28 years in the business even when times are good I say no way. Aircraft repair station? In a heartbeat, but I have to operate it. (wink) There are only 3 or 4 heavy aircraft repair stations in the USA right now capable of doing heavy checks and repairs. Slots are hard to get and drop in work is expensive.

          Pet grooming salon? Go for it, our groomer is barely keeping up even in this economic climate. She is really busy. Her advertising campaign consisted of her, hubby and parents putting pink postcards on doors within a 2 mile radius. When we found one on our door we made a visit, hte dogs liked her so it was a slam dunk there, then all the referrals from happy pet owners and the rest for her is history.

          I have heard some horror stories about leased space negotiations, it seems that some landlords are using the bait and switch tactic to get more money from tennants. Would I buy an office condo that was perfect right now? If I had the money oh yes, prices are way down and owning is a good thing.
          • Re: Is this the BEST time or WORST time to start a business?
            golfheaven Adventurer
            Yes it all depends on concept, need of market, and your own negotiation skills.My prespective in my market was there was a need for a better product and service. The only provider of said service was doing a terrible job and was receiving a tremendous amount of complaints. I have just found out recently that they closed all corporate locations and have left there franchisees floating in the wind (chapter 7). So now would be a good time to push harder then ever to start mine up.
            • Re: Is this the BEST time or WORST time to start a business?
              chezziepoo Wayfarer
              I agree that it depends upon what type of business you're starting. If you finally are opening that decorative pottery shop... now might not be the best time.

              However, I know that some of the local businesses around here that are "new" still, 5 years or less, are turning to different options that are helping them grow. We're in the Northern Virginia area and we remodel kitchens. Business has been slacking, so in 2007 we jumped the band-wagon and became a small business contractor to the government. At first, it was a drain of resources, but in the past year it's helped tremendously... especially when our private sector of the business had a dry spell. The only problem with becoming a contractor can be some of the start-up costs, which might break your business because you can make it.
              • Re: Is this the BEST time or WORST time to start a business?
                Creditbuilder Scout

                In my openion? THIS IS THE BEST TIME TO START A BUSINESS

                We have been forming corporations for many years now for our clients and i will say this is the boom for starting a business because now is the time you want to start thinking about asset protection.

                True enough, that the process for funding is much more complex and complicated then a year ago, but putting things into perspective, I can tell you it has only become difficult for business owners who are looking for cash, just to take the money and run and not invest a penny into their own company.

                If you are or are wanting to run a real company, then starting a corp now can be very cost effective. For less than 2k you can get:

                Articles of Incorporation
                Document of company transfer
                credit report transfer
                A corporate kit (Corporate compliance record book)
                Stock Certificates
                A corporate seal
                corporate bylaws
                up to 1 yr registed agent services
                Dun and Bradstreet set up
                Fed tax id number
                Credit applications submitted for up to $100,000 per bank with up to 5 banks
                Credit applications for secured lines of credit
                Credit applications for personal credit lines of up to $50,000
                Phone consultation with financial advisors

                Most of the services mentioned above you can do yourself with the Secretary of State, but if you have questions feel free to visit us at www.businessformationgroup.com or give us a call.

                best of luck
                • Re: Is this the BEST time or WORST time to start a business?
                  Lighthouse24 Ranger

                  Things are not so bad (I hope) that the basic rules of entrepreneurial business don't still apply: (1) spot an opportunity, (2) fund it adequately, (3) market if effectively, and (4) manage it competently. If any one of those is lacking (bad idea, undercapitalized, poorly marketed, or mismanaged), the current business climate will just cause it to fail sooner than it might have in a strong economy. If all four of those are present, however, a new business still has a great chance of thriving.

                  In spite of a "stinky economy" and "nobody buying anything," an entrepreneur opened a tiny retail shop in my area in late September. Initial start-up costs were under $10K, and estimated revenues in four months have reportedly topped $300K. Today, the store made the evening news thanks to a two-hour long waiting line to get in. The shop sells Obama t-shirts and merchandise -- nothing else. The store's original plan (when the space was leased) was to sell officially licensed sports merchandise, but the owner decided just weeks before opening that Obama paraphernalia would be a more profitable endeavor.

                  Another enterprising individual assembled the text of each one of Mr. Obama's speeches (from when the President-elect announced his candidacy through election night), used Adobe software to lay them all out in book format, distilled that into commercial print files, delivered them to a book printer, and then started advertising on-line. These perfect bound books retail for $28, they cost less than $7 each to have made, and 14,000+ have been ordered so far (that's over $294K profit in two months).

                  Here's the real kicker. Neither of those entrepreneurs has ever set foot in the United States. Two people on different continents were able to spot a business opportunity here -- add funding, marketing, and management -- and make over a half-million dollars between them in a matter of weeks.

                  Of course, the news also reported the overseas entrepreneur who sold nearly $2 million dollars worth of non-existent "inauguration tickets" on-line, and the one who sold over $3 million in inauguration travel packages that included seats on non-existent charter flights and rooms at a non-existent luxury hotel in the heart of the DC. I figure we'll know that the economy is in real trouble when nobody can afford to fall for scams anymore.