New Direction

I’ve said before, you can analyze things and plan and figure it all out, but sometimes when it’s time, it’s time. For example, I have a couple of women friends who are biding their time in their marriages, because they aren’t sure they would be able to make it on their own. One is taking college classes in preparation for a career where she’ll hopefully make more money than if she doesn’t have a degree. She has three children to care for. She stays in her unhappy marriage while she waits and plans. Another friend is educated, but currently unemployed. She is actively seeking employment, but so far nothing. I have quelled my desire to tell them both, “When it’s time, it’s time.” They will know when it’s time. No matter if they are well prepared, educated, employed, or not, it will be time.

It was time for Mr. A this past Monday.

He gave his two week notice. We have been discussing his desire to launch his business full time for several months now.

Start up costs will be zero, as he has already acquired all the tools necessary for his business, and he has already been working for one client for several months on the weekends.

Mr. A’s “day job” boss was not surprised, and said that he was very interested in hiring him for contracted labor. He also said he would place a notation in his file that he should be hired immediately if he wanted to come back.

Our son also has a lead for us – one of our church brethren is a customer service representative for a manufactured housing company and he would like some of our business cards so he can refer us. We plan to give him a finder’s fee for people he sends our way to do business with my husband.

Ideally we would have done this differently. Ideally we would have every single thing in line and lots of money in the bank. Millionaire Mommy Next Door had a post just last week on this very topic: How to Create Lasting Wealth via Self-Employment. In fact, when I read her post, I cringe at how many we have not done. But one important thing she says that we are taking heed of is “Don’t allow negative, unsuccessful people to bring you down.” We have encountered one naysayer so far, but everyone else has been very happy for Mr. A. Especially his younger brother, who recently started his own business in the same line of work. He will be a great asset both in mentoring us through the process, and he is also very enthusiastic and excited about owning his own business. We have some friends that live in another state – we babysit their house while they are not here, and they are entrepreneurs and their new business is booming. They are very excited for us as well.

Sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith, and go for it. It’s always a gamble starting out on your own. It’s always a risk. No matter how much money you have saved in the bank. No matter how prepared you are, it’s a risk.

The positives from my perspective:

  1. Start up costs are zero.
  2. Mr. A’s hourly wages double immediately.
  3. He knows the work inside and out, so there is no learning curve.
  4. Mr. A already has one steady client.
  5. His “day job” wants him to work as contract labor.
  6. We have another lead that could be very lucrative.
  7. Mr. A’s “day job” will rehire him.
  8. Mr. A is a hard worker and has been working 6-7 days a week for months.
  9. I am keeping my job.
  10. Since we were carpooling and he worked 9-10 hours days, I had to be away from home just as many hours as he was. My days will become shorter right away.
  11. My boss gave me permission to work from 6-2:30, instead of what I worked previously 7-3:30. My drive time, during traffic 3 hours round trip. If I go in earlier and leave earlier, it will take me 2 hours instead of three.

Today I’m working on our finances and closing up the month. I also plan to move the money from the high interest rate card to the 0% interest card today. Oh, and this is big. I called the 0% interest card and asked if they planned to backcharge us for the interest. They said some companies do, but they will not do that. I will be sure to read the little update pamphlets they send to make sure they haven’t changed tactics. And if we still owe that amount when the 12 month deadline is nearing, I will find another card to switch the balance.

For the time being, as we see how this business venture goes, I will probably change my tactics toward paying off our credit card debt. Especially since we have a short reprieve on paying interest. Meaning I may pay the minimum due for a couple of months.

We are also revising our monthly budget and cutting down on some expenses. Since Mr. A can be more flexible with his hours, our babysitting fees will drop in half. Cost for gasoline won’t drop however, unless I can find a job closer to home. I have thought about it carefully, but I am currently assisting my employer with migrating from manual to electronic accounting, and it is quite a process. I am finally making progress to the point that I may be able to cut my days from four, back down to three, hopefully by October. Or, if Mr. A is doing very well, I may be able to become his full-time secretary and bookkeeper.

By cutting our monthly budget, we will need Mr. A to bring in a minimum of $1000 each month. Of course we expect he will bring in much more than this amount, but this is the bare minimum that he needs to shoot for as he gets started. Knowing the amount helps to keep the stress level down.

Mr. A and I brainstormed on the way to work on Tuesday and finally came up with a business name! We have been throwing names around for months. Here’s how we finally did it. I had my laptop and started writing down all the adjectives for the attributes a business owner should project. Professionalism, integrity, honesty, efficiency, fair cost, etc. After we had several of them, I got the idea to put some of the words together as an acronym. We came up with a name that we both like, and I checked with our state’s online business name finder tool and no one is using the name, and it is a unique name.

There is a lot more to do to get up and running, but we have a good start and I hope we are successful.

Here are two books I ordered a couple of months ago, and they have been very helpful so far:

I will be reading them again in the coming days.

Wish us luck!

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