The weather is hot and we could all use a little rain; it must be August! When the combines start rolling soon, it'll be hard to focus on the paperwork being left behind on the desk. As you get back into the fields this season, we have five tips to keep your financials on track during the fall.
1. Inspect Equipment:
There is no time like the present to make sure your equipment is ready to tackle harvest and to ensure no repairs are needed that could lead to costly delays. Consider having spare parts on-hand that are commonly under stress during harvest and may need a quick repair in between fields. Time is money when the weather is good, and a thorough inspection prior to hitting the fields will help keep you on track and limit unexpected expenses.
2. Review Your Liabilities:
Before heading away from the office, review your loan obligations for any upcoming payments you have during harvest. You should be aware of payment amounts as well as due dates. Being mindful of these payments will allow you to recognize any harvest delays or yield concerns that would cause alarm regarding your ability to repay. Be open and honest with your loan officer – the earlier you can notify them of difficulties, the more options there may be.
3. Be Familiar with Your Guarantees:
Review your crop insurance policy with your agent and know what your guarantees are per farm and crop. If you notice a particularly low yielding field, the sooner you contact your agent, the faster they can submit a claim and notify an adjuster.
4. Maintain Good Records:
Keep records of yields, where the crop is stored and/or sold, and the prices you receive. Maintaining good records not only benefits you as the business owner, but all of your associates, as we work together to provide fast and supportive solutions throughout the harvest season to help you finish out the year strong.
5. Assess Your Goals:
Think back to what your goals were at the beginning of the season. Was it to achieve record yields? Did you want to capture early delivery premiums at the elevator? Are you looking to pay off certain financial obligations at year-end? Or, are you preparing for the future and replenishing cash reserves? All are great questions to consider as income begins to flow and you close out one crop year only to begin thinking about the next.
Making yourself aware of current and potential debt obligations, knowing what you’re guaranteed to earn from crop insurance in a disaster, and maintaining great records will make assessing your goals at the end of the year and ensuring superior farm financials a breeze this harvest season!
Whether you’re a beginning farmer, looking to expand your operation, or just ready to relax in a rural setting, we’re here to help. For more information about financing opportunities, give us a call at 888.339.3334 or visit mafc.com.