Investing

Learn about your investments.

Investment Calculators

Vehicles

How much vehicle can I afford?

Vehicle Calculators

Buying A Home

Run the numbers.

Mortgage Calculators

Retirement

How big should your nest-egg be?

Retirement Calculators

Education / College

What are the options to pay for college?

Education Calculators

Business

Planning, strategy, and measurement.

Business Calculators

Taxation

Lots of tax tools

Tax Calculators

Payroll

Check your paycheck and benefits.

Payroll Calculators

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How Does Inflation Impact My Standard Of Living? Use this calculator to determine the impact inflation may have on your standard of living. What Is My Projected Cash Flow? A projected cash flow statement can help you evaluate your personal income and expenses and see if you potentially may run ‘in the red or the black’ at a future date. What Is The Value Of Reducing, Postponing or Foregoing Expenses? Use this calculator to help determine what you could accumulate by reducing or eliminating discretionary monthly expenses. Historical Inflation – Compare Purchasing Power If your income does not keep pace with increasing consumer prices then your standard of living can be reduced. How Much Am I Spending? Where does all the money go? An itemization of your living expenses may help you budget better and plan for future expenses. How Much Do I Need For Emergencies? It is prudent planning to have at least three to six months of liquid/cash assets set aside in the event of a loss of job, medical emergency, short-term disability, etc. Should I Pay Down Debt Or Invest My Monthly Surplus? When you receive some extra money it may be difficult to determine whether you should invest the funds or use them to retire debt. Financial theory recommends that if your after-tax return on investments is greater than your after-tax cost of debt then you should invest. How Long Will My Money Last With Systematic Withdrawals? You have worked hard to accumulate your savings. Use this calculator to determine how long those funds will last given regular withdrawals. Should My Spouse Enter The Work Force? A working spouse can provide additional needed household income. However, when making your decision, you need to look at the net income generated by a working spouse not simply the gross income. Factors such as health insurance savings, increased daycare expenses, additional transportation costs, etc. need to be considered. What Is My Current Net Worth? In order to get where you want to go, you need to know where you are. You can get a view of your financial position by generating a personal net worth statement. What Is My Projected Net Worth? Over time your net worth will change as your assets earn interest or are depleted and your liabilities increase or decrease. Use this calculator to estimate what your net worth could be in the future based on specified growth rates. What Is My Current Cash Flow? Businesses generate a sources and uses of cash statement to evaluate their income and expenses and to check profitability. Similarly, a cash flow statement can help you evaluate your personal income and expenses and see if you are running ‘in the red or the black’ each month.
How Much Home Can I Afford? When you’re buying a home, mortgage lenders don’t look just at your income, assets, and the down payment you have. They look at all of your liabilities and obligations as well, including auto loans, credit card debt, child support, potential property taxes and insurance, and your overall credit rating. Which is Better: Fixed or Adjustable-Rate Mortgage? It is a difficult decision to decide between a fixed and an adjustable-rate mortgage. Factors such as loan duration, the index used by the lender, the number and timing of rate adjustments, and your assumption about the increase/decrease of future interest rates all have an impact. Adjustable Rate Mortgage Calculator Unlike fixed rate mortgages, the payments on an adjustable rate mortgage will vary as interest rates change. How Do Closing Costs Impact The Interest Rate? If you choose to finance your closing costs, the monthly loan payments will be higher than if you had paid the closing costs out-of-pocket. In order to help borrowers compare loans, lenders use a standard calculation called annual percentage rates (APR) which takes into account the closing costs. Compare An Interest-Only Versus Traditional Mortgage An interest-only mortgage may be enticing due to lower initial payments than a traditional mortgage. However, when the interest-only loan begins to amortize after 5, 10 or 20 years then your monthly payments will be higher. How Much Can I Borrow From My Home Equity (HELOC)? Depending upon the market value of your home, outstanding mortgage balance, credit history and other factors, you may qualify for a home equity line of credit. Monthly payments on a HELOC are variable as they fluctuate with interest rate changes. Should I Refinance My Mortgage? Over the last couple of years with interest rates at a 40-year low, many people refinanced their mortgages. Even though rates have crept up over the last couple of months, refinancing may make sense for you. Comprehensive Mortgage Calculator The loan amount, the interest rate, and the term of the mortgage can have a dramatic effect on the total amount you will eventually pay for the property. Further, mortgage payments typically will include monthly allocations of property taxes, hazard insurance, and (if applicable) private mortgage insurance (PMI). Comparing Mortgage Terms (i.e. 15, 20, 30 year) Different mortgage terms and rates can make the loan selection process confusing, especially if you don’t plan on keeping the loan for the full term. Should I Pay Discount Points For A Lower Interest Rate? In some cases, it may benefit you to ‘buy down the interest rate’ by paying extra money up front in the form of discount points. Should I Rent or Buy A Home? With interest rates near 40-year lows, the decision to rent versus buy becomes difficult. Should I Convert to a Bi-Weekly Payment Schedule? It may surprise you that most banks and mortgage companies collect two to three dollars for every dollar that you borrow! However, there is a way to accelerate mortgage payoff using a method called Bi-Weekly Mortgage Payments. Compare A ‘No-Cost’ Versus Traditional Mortgage Many lenders will offer a ‘no-cost’ loan in lieu of a traditional mortgage. ‘No-cost’ loans are generally priced at a higher interest rate than a traditional mortgage. The higher rate allows the lender to make enough money on the interest rate spread from the underwriter to pay for all your closing costs and provide them with their profit. What Are The Tax Savings Generated By My Mortgage? With the interest on a mortgage being deductible when you itemize deductions, it may surprise you how much you can save in taxes.
How Much Should I Be Saving For College? With college costs increasing at twice the rate of inflation, it is important to start saving early. Interest working for you now in a regular savings program is much better than having interest work against you in the future in the form of education loans. Feasibility of Student Loan Repayment When you borrow money for college you might not be thinking about your ability to repay the loan once you graduate. Outstanding student loan balances may infringe upon your ability to qualify for a home, auto and other personal loans. What Are The Advantages Of A Coverdell ESA? Tax-deferral can have a dramatic effect on the growth of an investment. With the new Coverdell ESA (formerly known as the Education IRA) your contributions can grow tax-deferred and distributed income tax-free as long as distributions are used for qualified education expenses. These costs can include school uniforms, computers, and transportation for elementary or secondary school, public, private or religious. What Are The Advantages Of A 529 College Savings Plan? Tax-deferral can have a dramatic effect on the growth of an investment. With a state-sponsored 529 College Savings Plan your contributions can grow tax-deferred (some states allow contributions to be partially or completely deductible) and distributed income tax-free as long as distributions are used for qualified education expenses such as tuition, fees, room and board at higher education institutions. What Is The Value Of A College Education? It may surprise you that, on average, an individual with a bachelor’s degree earns approximately $57,026 per year, compared to the $34,197 average yearly salary of a worker with a high school diploma. What Are The Payments On A Parental (PLUS) Loan? PLUS loans are low-interest federally insured loans for parents of undergraduate students to help pay a dependent student’s college cost. PLUS loans are also available to graduate and professional students. Should I Live At Home, On Campus, Or Off Campus? Before deciding on room and board options when attending college, it may help to itemize and project expenses. These expenses will vary depending on whether you will commute from home, stay on campus or rent an apartment off campus. When Should I Begin Saving For Child’s College? When saving for college, compound interest can be your friend. However the longer you wait to start saving the less interest you will accumulate and the more you will have to save.
How Much Life Insurance Do I Need? Planning to meet the financial needs of your survivors is one of the most important and fundamental steps in creating a sound financial plan for you and your family. What Is The Future Value Of An Annuity? Unlike a taxable account, a fixed annuity enjoys the benefits of tax deferral. In addition, many annuity companies offer a higher first year bonus rate. To be able to offer these higher rates companies typically require you to keep the funds invested for a period of time or suffer a surrender penalty for early withdrawal. Which Is Better, Comprehensive Plan Or High-Deductible Plan With HSA? Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) were created by the Medicare bill signed by President Bush on December 8, 2003. HSAs are a form of medical savings account that must be accompanied by a high-deductible health insurance plan. HSAs allow individuals/employers to set aside money on a pre-tax or tax-deductible basis and then withdraw the money tax-free to pay qualifying medical expenses. What Is My Life Expectancy? With medical advances and improved lifestyles, life expectancies in the United States are on the rise. What Are My Needs For Burial And Final Expenses? Long gone are the days of being buried in a pinewood box. Funeral expenses can vary from several thousand dollars up to $15,000 and more depending on which services you select. Funeral homes and crematoriums provide a list of expenses some of which have been enumerated here. How Much Disability Income Do I Need? Your chances of becoming disabled are far greater than your chances of dying. It may surprise you that one out of three individuals will suffer a disability that lasts at least 90 days. One out of ten will be permanently disabled prior to age 65. What Are My Chances of Becoming Disabled? It may surprise you that 33.7 million non-institutionalized Americans (or 12.2 percent of the population) experience limitations in usual activities due to chronic conditions. What Are My Long-Term Care Needs? There are basically three ways to fund your long-term care needs: self-insure, qualify for Medicaid, or obtain long-term care insurance. How Much Will I Earn In My Lifetime? Most people earn a small fortune during their lifetime. Yet many of them are unaware of how their annual income adds up over the years. What Are The Tax Advantages Of An Annuity? Deposits into an annuity are not tax-deductible, however you don’t have to pay taxes on the interest earned until you begin making withdrawals. This tax-deferral period can have a dramatic affect on the growth of an investment. How Long Will My Current Life Insurance Proceeds Last? You may think that you are adequately insured in the event of your death. It may surprise how quickly the tax-free insurance proceeds may be depleted by your survivor income needs.
How Should I Allocate My Assets? Over 90 percent of investment returns are determined by how investors allocate their assets versus security selection, market timing and other factors. Certificate Of Deposit (CD) Analyzer Use this calculator to help determine the potential interest growth and tax liability on your Certificate of Deposit. What Is The Dividend Yield On A Stock? Dividends paid by a corporation can make up a significant portion of the cash flow generated by a stock purchase. How Do Expenses Impact Mutual Fund Returns? It may surprise you how sales charges, management fees and lost opportunity cost can erode the total return on your mutual fund. Certificate of Deposit (CD) laddering strategy Typically you can receive higher crediting rates on a CD if you commit to leaving your money with the bank for a longer period of time. This lack of liquity causes many people to choose shorter-term CDs at the expense of receiving the higher interest rates. CD laddering is a strategy that gives you the benefit of receiving the higher-interest crediting rates of longer term CDs but still provide you with some liquidity. Share Certificate analyzer Use this calculator to help determine the potential interest growth and tax liability on your Share Certificate. Share Certificate laddering strategy Typically you can receive higher crediting rates on a Share Certificate if you commit to leaving your money with the bank for a longer period of time. This lack of liquity causes many people to choose shorter-term Share Certificates at the expense of receiving the higher interest rates. Share Certificate laddering is a strategy that gives you the benefit of receiving the higher-interest crediting rates of longer term Share Certificates but still provide you with some liquidity. Compare Taxable Versus Tax-Free Investment Return Many investments are taxed differently. For example with bonds, some may be taxed federally only, some may be taxed at the state level only, and some may be taxed both at the state and federal level. What Is The Value Of A Bond? Bond values are very sensitive to market interest rates. For example, if you purchased bond with a stated/coupon rate of 10% and market rates had declined to 8% since you purchased the bond, then the value of your 10% bond in a market crediting 8% would be higher. What Is The Return On My Real Estate Investment? Purchase price, loan terms, appreciation rate, taxes, expenses and other factors must be considered when you evaluate a real estate investment. What Is The Value Of Compound Interest? Compound interest can have a dramatic effect on the growth of an investment. What Is The Value Of A Call Or Put Option? A Call option represents the right (but not the requirement) to purchase a set number of shares of stock at a pre-determined ‘strike price’ before the option reaches its expiration date. A call option is purchased in hopes that the underlying stock price will rise well above the strike price, at which point you may choose to exercise the option. Exercising a call option is the financial equivalent of simultaneously purchasing the shares at the strike price and immediately selling them at the now higher market price. Taxable vs. Tax-Deferred Savings? Tax-deferral can have a dramatic effect on the growth of an investment. What Is My Risk Tolerance? On your way home from work, do you drive in the slow lane or the fast lane? Each person has a different propensity for risk. When investing, this risk propensity can be used to determine the percentage of your portfolio that is exposed to equities. What Is The Long-Term Impact Of Increased Investment Return? It may surprise you how much more you could accumulate in savings simply by repositioning assets to achieve potentially a slightly higher return.
How Much Will My Company Bonus Net After Taxes? A bonus from your employer is always a good, however, you may want to estimate what you will actually take-home after federal withholding taxes, social security taxes and other deductions are taken out. What Is The Impact Of Increasing My 457 Plan Contribution? It may surprise you how significant your retirement accumulation may be simply by increasing the percent of your salary that you save each month in your 457 Plan. What may my 403(b) Plan be worth? It may surprise you how significant your retirement accumulation may become simply by saving a small percentage of your salary each month in your 403(b) Plan. What is the impact of increasing my 403(b) contribution? It may surprise you how significant your retirement accumulation may be simply by increasing the percent of your salary that you save each month in your 403(b). How Will Payroll Adjustments Affect My Take-Home Pay? Many factors can affect your eligibility and contribution limits to either the Traditional IRA or Roth IRA – tax filing status, your current earned income level and whether or not you participate in a retirement plan at work. Convert My Salary To An Equivalent Hourly Wage Use this calculator to determine what your hourly wage equates to when given your annual salary – it may surprise you what you make on an hourly basis. Convert My Hourly Wage To An Equivalent Annual Salary Use this calculator to determine your equivalent annual salary when given what you get paid per hour – it may surprise you what you make on a yearly basis. What Is The Future Value Of My Employee Stock Options? Your company-issued employee stock options may not be ‘in-the-money’ today but assuming an investment growth rate may be worth some money in the future. Should I Exercise My ‘In-The-Money’ Stock Options? When your employee stock options become ‘in-the-money’, where the current price is greater than the strike price, you can choose from one of three basic sell strategies. What May My 401(k) Be Worth? It may surprise you how significant your retirement accumulation may become simply by saving a small percentage of your salary each month in your 401(k) plan. What Is The Impact Of Increasing My 401(k) Contribution? It may surprise you how significant your retirement accumulation may be simply by increasing the percent of your salary that you save each month in your 401(k). What May My 457 Plan Be Worth? It may surprise you how significant your retirement accumulation may become simply by saving a small percentage of your salary each month in your 457 Plan. Use this calculator to estimate how much your plan may accumulate for retirement.
Evaluate My Company Pension Payout Options When you reach retirement, and if your company provides a pension program, you will be offered a number of payout options. Typically, they will be the Single Life and the Joint Survivor payout options. What Is The Impact Of Borrowing From My 401(k) Plan? Some qualified retirement plans include the option for qualifying participants to a take a loan against their retirement account balance. Many people borrow from their retirement plan to pay off high-interest debt or to make a major purchase. What Is The Impact Of Early Withdrawal From My 401(k)? Many people feel the need to withdraw funds from their 401(k) plan due to hardship or other emergency. Self-Employed Retirement Plan Maximum Contribution Calculator Compensation for a self-employed individual (sole proprietor or partner) is that person’s earned income. The starting point to determine the individual’s earned income is the net profit amount from the Schedule C (or Schedule K-1 for a partnership). Net Unrealized Appreciation (NUA) vs. IRA Rollover Consideration of NUA strategy is important if you are distributing highly appreciated employer securities from your prior employer’s qualified plan, such as 401(k). Cost basis, the value of the employer contribution on your behalf is subject to ordinary income tax upon distribution. What are my Stretch IRA distributions? By naming a beneficiary on your IRA account it will provide the beneficiary the opportunity to “stretch” out the IRA proceeds over his/her life expectancy. This gives the beneficiary more time to take advantage of tax-deferral status of the IRA assets. How Much Can I Contribute To An IRA? Many factors can affect your eligibility and contribution limits to either the Traditional IRA or Roth IRA – tax filing status, your current earned income level and whether or not you participate in a retirement plan at work. How Much Retirement Income May My IRA Provide? Your retirement income can vary widely depending on what type of IRA holds your savings and what assumptions you make about return and tax rates during the accumulation and withdrawal periods. Should I Convert To A Roth IRA? Roth IRA is a great way for clients to create tax-free income from their retirement assets. Yet, keep in mind that when you convert your taxable retirement assets into a Roth IRA you will generally pay ordinary income tax on the taxable amount that is converted. What Will My Qualified Plan(s) Be Worth At Retirement? It may surprise you how significant your retirement accumulation may be simply by contributing regularly to a qualified plan. What Is My Current Year Required Minimum Distribution? Current tax law specifies that once you reach age 70 1/2, you must begin taking RMDs annually from your IRAs and other retirement plans. Generally, the RMD amount is determined based on your prior year’s IRA balance of all of your IRA assets divided by your life expectancy. What Is My Projected Required Minimum Distribution? Current tax law specifies that once you reach age 70 1/2 you must begin making taxable withdrawals from your Traditional IRAs and many other retirement plans. These minimum distributions are calculated annually based on your age, account balance at the end of the previous year, marital status and spouse’s age. What Are My Lump Sum Distribution Options? You’ve spent a long time accumulating funds in your retirement account. When you retire and take distribution of your funds you have many options to consider. How Do I Maximize My Employer 401(k) Match? The goal is to reach the IRS limit while at the same time maximizing your employer’s matching contribution and thereby maximize take-home pay.
How Will Retirement Impact My Living Expenses? Your living expenses may increase or decrease at retirement but will likely not stay the same. You may travel more, reduce business expenses such as eating out and transportation costs, perhaps your house will be paid off. Compare the Roth 401(k) to a Traditional 401(k) Your retirement income can vary widely depending on what type of account holds your savings and what assumptions you make about return and tax rates during the accumulation and withdrawal periods. How Much Will I Need To Save For Retirement? Retirement can be the saddest or happiest day of your life. This pre-retirement calculator will help you determine how well you have prepared and what you can do to improve your retirement outlook. It is important that you re-evaluate your preparedness on an ongoing basis. Are My Current Retirement Savings Sufficient? One method of retirement planning is to project what you are currently saving and have accumulated to date and see if you will have enough to meet your retirement objectives. Social Security Retirement Income Estimator Depending upon your current earnings, Social Security can be a significant part of your retirement income. However, many factors will impact the benefit you may receive. Use this calculator to approximate your Social Security benefit. How Does Inflation Impact My Retirement Income Needs? It may surprise you how the much inflation can erode purchasing power. I’m Retired, How Long Will My Savings Last? Due to increasing life expectancies, many are running into the problem of outlasting their savings. Use this calculator to help determine when your retirement savings account may be depleted given a specified monthly income target. When Should I Begin Saving For Retirement? A penny saved is a penny earned, but a penny saved today is a penny potentially earning more. Should I Convert Discretionary Expenses To Savings? t may surprise you how much you can accumulate for retirement simply by foregoing a few luxuries such as a one-time purchase of a boat or cabin, or trimming back recurring monthly expenses such as eating out, movies, magazine subscriptions, cable tv programming, video rentals, vending machines, etc. How much retirement income may my 401(k) provide? It may surprise you how significant your retirement accumulation may become simply by saving a small percentage of your salary each month in your 401(k) plan.
Becoming A Millionaire It may surprise you how quickly you can accumulate a million dollars. What Is The Effective Annual Yield On My Investment? The number of compounding periods per year will affect the total interest earned on an investment. For example, if an investment compounds daily it will earn more than the same investment with the same stated/nominal rate compounding monthly. Income Generated By A Savings Plan Saving regularly can help you achieve your future income goals. How Long Will It Take To Double My Savings? Compound interest can have a dramatic affect on the growth of a single deposit. By dividing 72 by your investment return you can determine the amount of time required for your money to be worth about twice as much as it is today. How Long Until My Savings Reach My Goal? Compound interest can have a dramatic affect on the growth of a single deposit. Save Now vs. Save Later A penny saved is a penny earned, but a penny saved today is a penny earning more. It is important to start saving as soon as possible for events such as retirement due to the impact of compounding. If you start saving now you will need to save considerably less than if you wait a few years. How Much Should I Save to Reach My Goal? What are you saving for: a computer, car, boat, summer home, down payment? What Will My Current Savings Grow To? Compound interest can have a dramatic effect on the growth of series of regular savings and initial lump sum deposits. Calculate Rate Of Return The rate of return (ROR), sometimes called return on investment (ROI), is the ratio of the yearly income from an investment to the original investment. The initial amount received (or payment), the amount of subsequent receipts (or payments), and any final receipt (or payment), all play a factor in determining the return. How Do Taxes and Inflation Impact My Investment Return? Taxes and inflation can have a dramatic effect on the growth of an investment.
What Is My Potential Estate Tax Liability? In 2012 federal estate taxes return with a top rate of 35%. Estates worth up to $5.12 million will be excluded from paying federal estate tax. This means that the federal government could ‘inherit’ a significant portion of your estate unless you take measures to preserve your wealth. Should I Itemize Or Take The Standard Deduction? If you have numerous itemized deductions such as mortgage interest, charitable contributions, etc., it may make sense for you to itemize your deductions instead of using the standard deduction for your tax filing status. What Is My Tax-Equivalent Yield? Tax-free investments such as municipal bonds have lower yields due to their tax-exempt status. Tax Refund Estimator Did you withhold enough in taxes this past year? Tax freedom day It might surprise you how many days you would have to work to pay your estimated federal tax liability (including Social Security tax withholdings). Federal Income Tax Estimator Taxes are unavoidable and without planning, the annual tax liability can be very uncertain. Should I Adjust My Payroll Witholdings? Each April many taxpayers are surprised as they realize that they have either over withheld or under withheld on their taxes. Use this calculator each year to help determine whether you are likely to be on target based on your current withholding status. Will My Investment Interest Be Deductible? Interest paid on debts incurred in order to invest (such as ‘margin accounts’) is generally deductible to the extent that it offsets investment income (such as interest, dividends and short term capital gains). Interest payments in excess of investment income can be carried forward in hopes of offsetting future investment income. How Much Self-Employment Tax Will I Pay? Self employment taxes are comprised of two parts: Social Security and Medicare. For 2013, you and your employer each pay Social Security taxes of 6.2 percent on the first $106,800 of your covered wages. Capital Gains (Losses) Tax Estimator Federal taxes on your net capital gain(s) will vary depending on your marginal income tax bracket and holding period of the asset. Compare Taxable, Tax-Deferred And Tax-Free Investment Growth Investment vehicles are taxed differently. This calculator is intended to help compare a fully taxable investment to two tax advantaged situations. How Much Of My Social Security Benefit May Be Taxed? Did you know that up to 85% of your Social Security Benefits may be subject to income tax? If this is the case you may want to consider repositioning some of your other income to minimize how much of your Social Security Benefit may be taxed and thereby, maximize your retirement income sources. What Are The Tax Implications Of Paying Interest? Interest paid may or may not be tax-deductible depending on the type of interest paid.
Should I Lease or Purchase An Auto? Leasing has become a very popular method of acquiring a new auto. Although the payments may seem attractive, it may not always be the best financial decision versus purchasing the vehicle outright and financing it with a low interest loan. Auto Purchase: Loan Versus 0% Dealer Financing? At first glance, 0% financing appears to be the best option when purchasing an auto. However, if you choose to finance through a bank or credit union you may be eligible for a dealer rebate. What Would My Auto Payments Be? Many factors go into determining the final loan amount for the purchase of a new or used vehicle. These factors include any manufacturer’s rebate, the trade-in value of your old vehicle less any outstanding balance, your down payment, etc. Should I Upgrade To A More Fuel Efficient Vehicle? It may make financial sense for you to sell your current vehicle and purchase one with better gas mileage. Taking into account the monthly savings at the pump, the financial question is how many months will it take you to recover the out-of-pocket costs you incur with the purchase of a new vehicle. Auto Loan: Accelerated Payoff By making a small additional monthly payment toward principal, you can greatly accelerate the term of your auto loan and, thereby, realize tremendous savings in interest payments. How much vehicle can I afford? Experts suggest that you should not allocate more than 20% of your take-home pay towards monthly auto payments. The down payment, interest rate, and term of your loan will also determine how much you can afford to buy. Should I refinance my auto loan at a lower rate? Without increasing the term remaining on your existing loan, you will be able to save interest with a new loan at a lower rate. How much can I lower my monthly payment with a new auto loan? With interest rates at record lows, it may make sense for you to investigate whether or not refinancing your auto loan could save you some money. Adjusting the term of your existing auto loan may also make a big difference in your monthly loan payment.
What are the tax savings of a qualified retirement/cafeteria plan? Implementation of a Qualified Plan and/or Section 125 Cafeteria Plan can result in significant tax savings and benefits to both the employer and employee. What are my new business startup costs? Before you launch a new venture, you should take the time to estimate the total capital that will be needed. Startup costs are divided into two main categories: one-time startup costs and recurring monthly expenses. Depending on when you expect to receive payments for your goods and services, it may be wise to begin with several months of working capital. Should I pay or charge monthly, quarterly or annually? Use this APR calculator to help determine whether it makes sense financially for you to pay your creditors and/or bill your customers either monthly, quarterly or semi-annually. What is the value of my business? Similar to bond or real estate valuations, the value of a business can be expressed as the present value of expected future earnings. How many units do I need to sell to break even? Given your profit margin, it is important to know how many units of a certain product that you will need to sell in order to cover your fixed/startup costs. Should I lease or buy equipment? Leasing is a popular method of acquiring new equipment for your business. Although the payments may seem attractive, it may not always be the best financial decision versus purchasing the equipment outright and financing it with a low interest loan. What are my business financial ratios? A regular review of your company’s financial ratios can help you focus on areas that may need improvement. Liquidity, efficiency, and profitability ratios, compared with other businesses in your industry, can highlight any strengths and weaknesses you might have over your competition. What is my employee total compensation package worth? Your employees may be surprised to find out how much is paid out in other benefits in addition to their salaries. The employer has both required and discretionary payments that it makes on behalf of the employee. What are my tax savings with Section 179 deduction? Section 179 of the IRS tax code gives businesses the opportunity to deduct the FULL purchase price of qualifying new and used equipment, and software placed into service during the tax year they were purchased or financed. This tax break encourages small businesses to invest in themselves and to purchase equipment sooner rather than later.