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In this lesson, you will delve into estimating startup expenses and capital using Google Sheets, a crucial aspect of your business planning. Such financial information is of paramount importance, as it is thoroughly scrutinized by lenders and investors when deciding whether to finance your business. The “Startup Expenses and Capital” worksheet, which you will be using, enumerates the initial, one-time costs required to open your business. It also details your available capital, including money and equipment, and the additional amount you will need. Working on a spreadsheet to estimate these startup expenses allows you to accurately gauge the funding and resources necessary to initiate your business operations. While the example provided in this lesson pertains to a pet care business, your focus will be tailored to the specific business you plan to start. Begin by reviewing the spreadsheet and understanding the information needed to complete it. If necessary, pause to gather business documents or conduct further lessons, and then resume when you are ready.

First, personalize the worksheet by adding your business’s name and review the notes on preparation. Next, move on to estimating your startup expenses, listing items essential for launching your business and their respective costs. This includes building costs, whether you’ve purchased, built, or remodeled a space, or if you plan to lease and make improvements. Factor in capital equipment like furniture and machinery, along with administrative expenses such as utilities deposits, legal fees, and pre-opening salaries. If your business deals with physical products, include your opening inventory, or for service-based businesses, list necessary supplies. Also, account for advertising and promotional expenses. Remember, these are just typical examples, and your business might have different needs. Feel free to skip irrelevant categories and add any unique expenses. Delete rows for inapplicable expenses to keep your spreadsheet concise and relevant. Then, document your sources of financial capital, detailing investments from owners or partners and any loans, including those from banks or personal contacts. After organizing your financial data, it’s now your turn to open the “Startup Expenses and Capital” spreadsheet, list your specific startup expenses and their amounts, detail your sources of capital, and remove any irrelevant line items or rows.