cost for a business plan

How Much Does a Business Plan Cost?

business plan writing services costs

A complete business plan helps you to identify your business goals and how you plan on reaching them. Whether you are a new business owner or an experienced entrepreneur, writing a comprehensive business plan can help you start, grow, and/or attract investors to fund your business.  

How Much Does It Cost to Write a Business Plan ?

Business plan pricing depends on what route you take to create it. However, there are a few essential elements that are common to all business plans:

There are several ways to approach writing a successful business plan, but the cost of each way varies widely. The cost of a business plan can be a significant investment, but it’s an essential tool for any business. Below we provide some tips for what to consider and the costs for the various methods of completing your own business plan.  

Considerations When Writing Your Own Business Plans

There are several things to consider when writing your own plan. Depending on whether you’re in need of funding and how much, the costs for your business plan will be different.

Take into account:

According to our business consultants’ surveys of investor requirements, a 15- to 25-page business plan is the ideal length. Adding more pages may cause your time-constrained investor to skim portions of the plan, even if they are interested, which might result in important information being overlooked. However, fewer pages may lead potential investors to believe that the firm has not been thoroughly thought out or simply doesn’t have enough information for them to make an investment decision.  

Business Plan Template Costs

There are a variety of business plan templates online that you can purchase for a one-time fee. These templates range in price but usually start at around $100. Remember, a bargain business plan template may not include all the information that you need, so it’s important to understand what is included with the template you purchase.

Many of these templates also come with instructions to help you fill in the template and make changes as needed. However, if there is something you want to be changed on the template, it may take time and money to have it done.

Be sure to do your research and find the right template for your business. The wrong template could set you back even further and change the face of your business entirely. If you purchase a professional business plan template, make sure it’s from a reputable business plan company with business plan writing skills   in a variety of industries.

The business plan template should be easily editable and customized for your specific business needs and industry trends.

If you do not want to pay for a template, there are companies that will charge by the page and some that offer free resources . However, these templates may not have been professional business plans written for your exact type of business.  

Experienced Consultants & Business Plan Writing Services Cost

Hiring a business plan writer or professional writing service will help you get a comprehensive business plan written just for your business. A professional business plan consultant will help you identify your goals and how your company will reach these goals. This route usually costs more but can be worth it if you do not have the time or resources to complete the business plan yourself.

A business plan writer can be found through online directories, but be sure to do your research prior to engaging in business with them. Be sure to ask for references and read reviews before hiring a business plan writing service.

If you choose to hire a business plan consultant, the cost varies based on the complexity and length of the plan. Generally, a consulting firm or private consultants charge between $1,000 and $5,000 to have a comprehensive business plan written . However, a lengthy and complex plan can easily start at a few thousand dollars and stretch into the tens of thousands of dollars based on the needs of the business.

Some experienced business plan writing services also offer package deals that include additional services, such as market research, a marketing plan, and realistic financial projections.

Business Plan Software Costs

There are business plan software applications that can be used for free or have a monthly subscription cost, which may work better for your needs depending on what you need in a business plan. These apps provide templates and make writing a business plan and business planning easier. They help organize the information you enter into the app and will sometimes offer advice on how to do things like financial projections for your business plan .

The information that you put into the application can be used for several different types of business plan needs. These apps are great for startups and small businesses looking to raise capital or secure funding.

Each app or software varies in what it offers. Some are more customizable than others, some have more options for presenting your business plan, and some even offer investment opportunities. With just your business idea, the business planning software can help you write your own business plan quickly and easily. 

Write Your Own Business Plan from Scratch

If you do not want to purchase a template or use software, the easiest and most cost-effective way is to write a business plan from scratch. This route takes time and effort to complete but can be done by anyone willing to put in the work.

When writing your business plan documents, remember that they should be as detailed as possible. This document is your guide to starting and running your business. The more complete it is, the better off you’ll be.

There are a variety of free resources available online to help you write a business plan, including articles, templates, and even video courses.

When writing a business plan from scratch, it’s important to consider all of your business aspects. This includes your business concept or business model , management, production, market research , sales strategies , customer service, operations, human resources, financial projections , and more.

Try to be as thorough as possible when writing the plan. While the task may seem daunting at first, you’ll find that putting together a business plan is not so bad once you get started. After all, if you can dream it, you can write it.

The cost of writing a b usiness plan is dependent on the purpose, type, and length of the business plan. The amount of time it takes to complete a  business plan , the language used, and who will be using the document also play a factor in the cost. You can find templates for a one-time fee or pay by the page, hire a business plan writing service or a business plan writer , contact a consulting firm , or use software/apps to create your business plan. Whichever option you choose, make sure you do your research, conduct an in-depth business plan review, and find the best resource to meet the goals for your business.  

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How to Estimate Realistic Business Startup Costs — 2022 Guide

cost for a business plan

What will it cost to start your business? It’s hard to know for sure, but it’s important that you start planning early on to avoid any unforeseen expenses. 

Launching a successful business requires preparation. And while you may not know exactly what those expenses will be, you can and should begin researching and estimating what it will cost to start your business.

What are startup costs?

Startup costs are expenses incurred before the business is running. These are the bills and expenses you will need to cover leading up to the launch of your business. While every business will need to account for specific startup costs, your business will generally fall under either a brick-and-mortar, online, or service-based organization. 

Why calculate startup costs?

Like your business plan, estimating your startup costs is part of building a roadmap for your business . Having even a rough estimate can help you avoid unnecessary risks and stay on track during more volatile months. 

Still not convinced that you should explore your startup costs? Here are a few more reasons why you should calculate your startup expenses.

Every business is different

Every single industry and business requires vastly different expenses, which means there’s no simple formula for calculating startup costs. But that doesn’t mean you can’t make an educated guess that accurately reflects the needs of your business.  

A SaaS business, for example, may need to account for additional online tools or server expenses to keep its site up and running. But an apparel store, brick-and-mortar, or online, will need to account for physical inventory and shipping expenses.

Establish a firm foundation

Many people underestimate startup costs and start their business in a haphazard, unplanned way. This may work in the short term but is typically much more difficult to maintain. Managing startup costs is almost impossible until you calculate them accurately and customers are often wary of brand new businesses with makeshift logistics.

Build your financial plan

Your financial plan is an overview of your current business financials and estimates for growth. Having realistic startup costs, even if they’re just estimates, is one of the key elements of building a viable financial plan . Understanding what it will take to start your business can help you:

To successfully leverage your financial plan, you’ll need to revisit it consistently throughout the life of your business. Having these early startup estimates will provide you with a baseline that you can reference during these reviews. After a few months of operating, you’ll know if your estimates are realistic or if you need to make any adjustments.

Secure loans and attract investors

Investors and lenders want to understand the roadmap you have in place for your business. You’ll need to be ready to answer questions about your business model, sources of revenue, growth forecasts, and initial startup costs. They need to see that your business is viable and that you’ve thoroughly explored what it will take to start, operate and grow.

Having realistic startup costs laid out is a necessity in this case. And being able to show how you believe expenses will change or remain similar over time will give them a better idea of how you intend to manage your business. 

less calculations with LivePlan

How to identify your startup expenses

Like when developing your business plan , or forecasting your initial sales, it’s a mixture of market research , testing , and informed guessing. It’s up to you to adjust accordingly based on actual results over time. 

If you need a starting point, look at your competitors and industry benchmarks for specific expense categories. You don’t want to directly copy the expenses you find, but confirm if your estimates make sense based on current market factors. You may find that you have a competitive cost advantage based on a healthy vendor relationship or a common expense you’re able to avoid based on your business model.

Now that may still leave you wondering, how do I actually estimate realistic startup costs for my business? Start by making these three simple lists. 

1. Startup expenses

These are expenses or upfront costs that happen before you launch and start bringing in any revenue. These should be split into one-time and ongoing expenses. By separating them in this way you can give yourself a more accurate estimate of what it will take to launch your business. Here are some common expenses to consider in both categories:

One-time expenses

Ongoing expenses

These makeup just a handful of the potential costs you’ll need to consider. Some will remain fixed, others will operate as variable costs and some may shift between the two over time. By having them outlined this way from the start, you’ll be able to keep better track of your expenses and identify any natural cost-cutting options over time. 

2. Startup assets

These are costs associated with long-term assets purchased in order to start your business. While cash in the bank is the most basic startup asset (and we’ll talk more about that later) there are some other common assets you may need to invest in:

Why separate assets and expenses?

Now there’s a reason that you should separate costs into assets and expenses. Expenses are deductible against income, so they reduce taxable income. Assets, on the other hand, are not deductible against income.

By initially separating the two, you potentially save yourself money on taxes. Additionally, by accurately accounting for expenses, you can avoid overstating your assets on the balance sheet. While typically having more assets is a better look, having assets that are useless or unfounded only bloats your books and potentially makes them inaccurate. 

Listing these out separately is good practice when starting a business and leads into the final piece to consider when determining startup costs. 

3. Cash required to get started

Cash requirements are an estimate of how much money your startup company needs to have in its checking account when it starts. In general, your cash balance on the starting date is the money you raised as investments or loans minus the cash you spend on expenses and assets.

This is the last piece of the puzzle you’ll need to get started. As you build your plan, watch your cash flow projections . If your cash balance drops below zero then you need to increase your financing or reduce expenses. 

How much cash do you need?

Many entrepreneurs decide they want to raise more cash than they need so they’ll have money left over for contingencies. While that makes good sense when you can do it, it is difficult to explain that to investors. Outside investors don’t want to give you more money than you need, because it’s their money.

You may see experts who recommend having anywhere from six months to a year’s worth of expenses covered, with your starting cash. That’s nice in concept and would be great for peace of mind, but it’s rarely practical. And it interferes with your estimates and dilutes their value.

For a better estimate of what you really need in your starting cash balance, you calculate the deficit spending you’ll likely incur during the early months of the business. From there, estimate how much cash you’ll need moving forward until you hit a steady break-even point several months and even years after opening.

How to estimate how much your expenses will cost

Now that you have your potential assets, expenses, and starting cash it’s time to put them all together to estimate your full startup costs. There are two potential methods you can use to develop these estimates.

The more traditional, which I call the worksheet method, involves creating separate worksheets for starting costs and starting financing.

The more innovative, which we use in our LivePlan software, simplifies this with rolling estimates for expenses, assets purchase, and financing to manage cash flow as a continuous process. Each option is valid so let’s dive into how to perform each method.

The traditional method — Startup worksheet

The traditional method uses a startup worksheet, as shown in the illustration here below, to plan your initial financing. The example here is for a retail bicycle shop. It includes lists of startup expenses in the upper left, startup assets in the lower left, and startup funding on the right.

The total startup costs in this example are $124,650, the sum of expenses ($3,150), and assets ($121,500) required before lunch.  The funding plan, on the right, shows that the owner plans to invest $25,000 of her own money and $99,650 in loans. The loans include a $70,000 long-term loan and other loans including a commercial credit of $17,650, a $2,000 note, and other current debt (probably credit card debt) of $10,000.  

Notice the balance here. One side shows the startup costs and the other shows where the money will come from.

cost for a business plan

Notice also that the assets include $35,000 in cash and bank account. That estimate, in this example, comes from the example shown above, which calculates the need for $25,708 in initial cash. The entrepreneur estimates $35,000 instead, to have a buffer.

Remember, the worksheet is covering what happens before launch. It doesn’t include ongoing sales, costs, expenses, assets, and financing after launch.

This worksheet example shows an estimated $3,150 in expenses incurred before startup. That is your initial loss when starting, meaning that these expenses can be deducted against income later, for tax purposes. This loss may look bad on the surface, but it’s quite normal for fledgling businesses. In fact, it’s financially beneficial, as having expenses to deduct from future taxes reduces your tax bills. 

The LivePlan method — Consolidated estimates

LivePlan suggests a different and probably more intuitive way to estimate startup costs. The key difference between LivePlan and traditional methods is the estimates start when a business starts spending rather than when it launches and starts getting revenues. There is no division between the launch date and pre-launch spending. So there is no specific startup table.

cost for a business plan

For example, in the Soup There It Is sample business plan, the revenue starts in April—but the spending starts in January. As you can see in the illustration here below, this startup estimates $11,500 in startup expenses, including $4,000 each in January and March plus $3,500 in March.

cost for a business plan

And, in the balance sheet, you can see that the startup projects needing $30,000 in initial cash investment, of which $21,375 is left at the end of the startup period. Founders have spent $11,500 on startup expenses. Of that, they owe $2,875 in accounts payable. So remaining cash is the result of starting with $30,000 and spending $8,625 so far.

And the remaining $2,875 in accounts payable takes the sum of expenses up to $11,500. Notice also that these deductible expenses create a loss at the startup of $11,500. (For a look at how these same numbers would show up in the traditional method, read on to the following section.)  

cost for a business plan

And how do you estimate, with the LivePlan method? Start with revenues, costs, and expenses (including payroll). Add in assets. And then solve the resulting cash flow problem by adding financing including loans and investments.

For example, here is how the Soup There It Is balance sheet looked before the founders added investment, loans, and inventory:

cost for a business plan

Do you see the problem there? A business plan isn’t done until the projected cash balance is above zero at all times. Otherwise, checks are bouncing, the bank is up in arms, and the business in trouble.

So the founders, as they develop their plan, first project money coming in and out, and from that, they can estimate how much financing, including investment, they need to make that work.

Reconciling the two methods

What’s the difference between the two methods? Let’s look at how the traditional startup worksheet would look using the information from the Soup There It Is plan. 

The plan would start in April, not January. And what the LivePlan method shows as happening in January through March is consolidated into the startup worksheet. You can see these numbers in the projected balance sheet for the LivePlan method, above.

cost for a business plan

If you prefer the traditional startup worksheet method but are working with LivePlan, then you would set your starting date as April, not January; and you would set owner investment (in financing) as $30,000. 

You would use the starting balances option in LivePlan to set starting balances as $21,275 of cash, -$11,500 in retained earnings (the loss at startup), and $2,875 in starting accounts payable.

Things to consider when estimating startup costs

Pre-launch versus normal operations.

With our definition of starting costs, the launch date is the defining point. Rent and payroll expenses before launch are considered startup expenses. The same expenses after launch are considered operating or ongoing expenses. And many companies also incur some payroll expenses before launch — because they need to hire people to train before launch, develop their website, stock shelves, and so forth.

The same defining point affects assets as well. For example, amounts in inventory purchased before launch and available at launch are included in starting assets. Inventory purchased after launch will affect cash flow , and the balance sheet; but isn’t considered part of the starting costs.

So, be sure to accurately define the cutoff for startup costs and ongoing expenses. Again, by outlining everything within specific categories, this transition should be simple and easy to keep track of.

Your launch month will likely be the start of your business’s fiscal year

The establishment of a standard fiscal year plays a role in your analysis. U.S. tax code allows most businesses to manage taxes based on a fiscal year, which can be any series of 12 months, not necessarily January through December.

It can be convenient to establish the fiscal year as starting the same month that the business launches. In this case, the startup costs and startup funding match the fiscal year—and they happen in the time before the launch and beginning of the first operational fiscal year. The pre-launch transactions are reported as a separate tax year, even if they occur in just a few months, or even one month. So the last month of the pre-launch period is also the last month of the fiscal year.

Consider startup financing as part of your startup costs

Of course, startup financing isn’t technically part of the starting costs estimate. But in the real world, to get started, you need to estimate the starting costs and determine what startup financing will be necessary to cover them. The type of financing you pursue may alter your startup or ongoing costs in a given period, so it’s important to consider this upfront.

Here are common financing options to consider:

Aim for long-term success with realistic startup costs

Whether you use the LivePlan method or the traditional method for estimating your startup costs, make sure you’ve considered every aspect of your business and included related costs. You’ll have a better chance at securing loans, attracting investors, estimating profits, and understanding the cash runway of your business.

The more accurately you layout startup costs and make adjustments as you incur them, the more accurate vision you’ll have for the immediate future of your business. 

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in 2018 and updated for 2021.

Tim BerryTim Berry

Tim Berry is the founder and chairman of Palo Alto Software and Follow him on Twitter @Timberry .

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cost for a business plan

Business Startup Costs: How To Calculate And Budget

Jordan Tarver

Updated: Jan 6, 2022, 9:00am

Business Startup Costs: How To Calculate And Budget

Starting a business comes with a variety of costs, which may require you to seek external business financing. In fact, entrepreneurs file millions of business applications every year in the U.S. The number of new business applications surged to a record 4.5 million in 2020, according to the Economic Innovation Group.

If you’re working to get your own business up and running, it’s crucial to understand the different costs you might encounter. Knowing potential business startup costs upfront makes you better prepared as an entrepreneur and can improve your odds of success.

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How to Calculate the Cost of Starting a Business

There’s no set cost to start a business —many factors can impact your initial startup expenses. In some cases, you might be able to get a company off the ground with a few thousand dollars. Other small business owners might need to come up with five figures (perhaps several times over) during their first year in operation.

With such a wide range of potential expenses, it’s helpful to start with a business plan. A separate startup cost analysis can help you estimate your costs as well. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) provides free guidance and sample worksheets you can use for both.

Taking the time to write out (and add up) your initial startup costs is a smart move. This extra preparation on the front end can lead to more realistic expectations and better long-term results for your new business endeavor.

Common Business Startup Costs

Go through the common business startup costs below to determine which expenses your business might encounter.

Incorporation Fees ($145)

One of the first tasks you’ll need to complete when you form a new business is choosing a business entity. General business structure choices include:

The average cost to register a business is $145. However, filing fees and other associated costs can differ based on the state where you operate.

Research Expenses ($100–$30,000+)

Researching the market you plan to enter puts your business in a better position to succeed. Some entrepreneurs attempt to do this research on their own. However, hiring a professional market research firm could give you a clearer picture of the industry, your target customers and your competition.

The price of market research can vary depending on the type of report and guidance you require. High-level market overviews might cost a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. A more detailed and personalized project by comparison could cost at least $30,000.

Equipment ($11,000–$125,000)

Regardless of your type of business, it probably needs some type of equipment to operate. Even online microbusinesses need access to a computer or device and an internet connection. Other types of businesses may have much more demanding equipment needs that could cost tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Below is a look at sample startup equipment costs for several different types of industries. (Your experience could be different.)

Office Space ($300–$1,230 per Month, per Employee)

With certain types of businesses, you might be able to operate from your home. But if your company requires office space, the cost of renting or buying a facility can add up.

Just like residential rent and mortgage costs, the price of securing office space for your business has a lot to do with your location. The size of your office will of course influence the price you pay as well.

The cost of office space starts around $300 per month (per employee). Yet in high-cost areas like San Francisco or New York, your monthly office space cost could be over $1,230 per person.

Utilities ($2.14 Per Square Foot)

On top of a monthly lease or loan payment for office space, you need to prepare for the added expense of utility services. For commercial buildings, the average utility cost is $2.14 per square foot, according to Building Owners and Managers Association International. The larger your office space and the more employees your business has, the higher its utility costs may climb.

Inventory (25%–35% of Operational Budget)

If your company plans to sell products to its customers, you’ll need to have some inventory on hand to fulfill orders. Inventory costs can require a significant financial investment. But the actual amount your business needs to spend here depends on numerous factors.

Most businesses that require inventory spend between 25% to 35% of their operational budgets on related costs. Initially, it can be hard to gauge how much your business will spend in this category. To estimate potential inventory costs, start by figuring out how much product you expect to sell in a 12-month period. Then, divide that number by 10, aiming to keep 10% of your annual inventory needs in stock.

Let’s say you plan to sell $75,000 in inventory over the next year. If you wanted to keep 10% of that number available to sell to customers, you’d need to purchase $7,500 in inventory.

Marketing and Advertising (Up to 7%–8% of Revenue)

Getting the word out about your business is essential. But you have to be careful not to overdo it on marketing and advertising expenses—especially as a new company.

The SBA advises limiting your marketing expenses to 7% or 8% of your revenue. However, if your profit margins are on the low side (less than 10%), you might want to adjust your marketing budget down until those numbers improve.

Website Development (Up to $10,000)

Creating a professional online presence is essential for most businesses. The question you have to answer as a startup is whether you want to hire someone to create a website for your business or try to tackle the project yourself.

Depending on your skill set and time constraints, you might be able to design your own starter website. Services like Squarespace and WordPress have templates available that can make the job easier and far more affordable. If you hire a professional website designer to develop your website, the cost might run between $2,000 and $10,000. However, website packages often include branding services that could benefit your business as well.

Office Supplies and Furniture ($200–$1,000 per Month, per Employee)

Whether you’re operating your business from home or you have a dedicated outside office space, your business will probably need to spend some money on office supplies. Depending on the type of business, you might need to purchase:

You might spend anywhere from $200 to $1,000 per month (per employee) on office supplies. But these costs can vary widely depending on your budgeting choices and the types of perks you want to offer employees.

Payroll (15% to 50% of Your Budget)

Payroll is one of the biggest expenses most businesses encounter. Yet finding quality team members and providing them with fair and competitive compensation is crucial if you want your company to thrive.

For many companies, payroll costs account for anywhere from 15% to 30% of their overall budget. Some businesses dedicate up to half of their budget to payroll expenses and still generate significant profit margins.

On top of salary and wages, be sure to factor the following costs into your company’s payroll expenses:

Professional Consultants ($75 to $400 per Hour)

As a new business, there may be many tasks that you try to manage on your own to save money. The cost of professional services, after all, can be pricey—running anywhere from $75 to $400 per hour.

For certain jobs, however, hiring a professional could be a wise investment. For legal matters , paying an attorney for advice and guidance can help you avoid potentially costly mistakes. Working with a CPA or bookkeeper could help your business make sure it’s meeting its tax obligations as required.

Insurance ($46–$86 per Month, per Policy)

Insurance is another important cost you should budget for as a new business owner. Depending on the type of business you operate, some types of business insurance coverage may be more important than others.

Below are some of the insurance options you may want to consider, along with the median monthly premium for each.

If you take out multiple business insurance policies with the same provider, you might be eligible for a bundle discount that could help you save money.

Taxes (Cost Varies)

Benjamin Franklin once wrote that nothing is certain in this world except death and taxes. So, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that your new business will have tax obligations to pay as well.

Your business structure, revenue and expenses can all influence how much your business has to pay in taxes. Working with a CPA to calculate your tax requirements and look for potential savings strategies is often your best bet.

The corporate tax rate is currently 21%, but there have been recent proposals in Congress to increase that number. In general, saving at least 25% of business profits is advisable, but you should talk to a reputable tax professional for advice.

How to Get Startup Business Financing

Finding the funds to cover startup costs, not to mention other business expenses that may arise, can be a challenge. But the right business financing has the potential to break big expenses down into smaller payments that are easier to manage.

If you’re interested in applying for a business loan, calculate how much you can afford to pay each month so that you don’t overextend yourself. Then, take the time to research and compare available business financing options to make sure you find the best deal available for your company.

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Michelle Lambright Black, Founder of and, is a leading credit expert and personal finance writer with nearly two decades of experience in the credit industry. She’s an expert on credit reporting, credit scoring, identity theft, and the intersection of credit and financing. You can connect with Michelle on Twitter (@MichelleLBlack) and Instagram (@CreditWriter).

Jordan Tarver is the Deputy Editor for Loans at Forbes Advisor. Before joining Forbes Advisor, Jordan was an editor and writer for multiple finance sites, focusing on loans, credit cards and bank accounts. When he is not working on personal finance content, Jordan is a self-help author and recently released his book You Deserve This Sh!t logo

How Much Do Business Plan Writers Cost?

business plan cost

When you’re starting or growing a business, it’s important to have a clear plan in place. Writing a business plan can help you outline your goals and sales strategies, and it can be a valuable tool when seeking funding from potential investors such as venture capitalists or a bank loan. 

If you don’t have time to write your own business plan, or if you need help getting started, professional business plan writing services can be a great option. But, how much do these services cost? And is it worth the investment? Let’s take a closer look.

How Much Should I Pay For a Business Plan Writing Service?

Professional business plan writers and consultants generally charge between $2,000 and $25,000. However, the cost largely depends on the required quality of your plan, the complexity of your business plan, and the length of the document. Professional business plans for very small companies may only require a few thousand dollars to be written, while more complex business plans for larger, growing companies can easily cost over ten thousand dollars.

There are also private consultants who will write or edit your business plan on an hourly fee basis. Fees can range from $50 to $300 per hour or more, depending on the consultant and the complexity of your business plan.

Whoever you choose to get started with your business plan, be sure to consider what’s included in your service. At the very least, you should expect:

There are several companies out there that offer complete business plan writing services. However, the quality of their work can vary dramatically. If you’re considering hiring outside help to write your business plan, choose carefully.

It’s important to remember that you get what you pay for when it comes to these types of services. If you go with a cheap plan writer, you run the risk of ending up with a low-quality business plan. If your business plan isn’t strong and professional-looking, it may be harder for you to get funding or attract investors.

Looking for a Business Plan Writer?

You’ve come to the right place!  Since Growthink was founded in 1999, we have provided business plan writing services for thousands of clients including startups, small business owners, nonprofit organizations and mid to large-sized companies. 

We understand that writing a business plan can be a time-consuming process for many entrepreneurs.  Hiring a business plan writer will allow you to quickly and expertly create a custom business plan.

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Call us at (800) 216-3710 or complete the form below and one of our business plan writers will reach out to you to schedule a time to speak about your business plan needs.

You can learn more about our business plan consulting services here

What Factors Impact Business Plan Pricing?

Some things that impact business planning services pricing include:

To really get your business off the ground, it’s important to have a business plan in place that has been written by someone with the expertise to put together a successful business plan. A professional business plan consultant is an excellent investment for increasing your chances of securing the funds you need to start and/or grow your business. However, it’s important to do your research and choose carefully when you’re ready to hire.

Who Can I Hire To Write My Business Plan?

When choosing a business plan writer or consulting firm, it’s important to look for a company with significant business experience and proven expertise in business plan development. Look for companies that have been around for at least five years and do business plan writing on a regular basis. They should also be able to provide references from other companies that they’ve worked with.

A Business Plan Writing Company or Consultant

When hiring a business plan writing service , you’ll have two primary options. You can opt to work with a single writer or a dedicated team of experts who will be responsible for the entire project. The price of the service may vary depending on which option you choose.

A business plan writer typically costs less than an entire team, but it’s important to keep in mind that you may have less control over the outcome. The upside is that your business plan will be written by an expert with a deep understanding of the writing process.

When choosing this route, you should ask for references and examples of previous work. Before hiring any business plan writer, be sure they have the proper credentials and experience to meet your needs. You should also ask about any fees associated with revisions or updates.

Many businesses choose to work with a business plan consulting firm that offers a collaborative team of experts. This type of company will give you the best of both worlds. You’ll be able to utilize the knowledge and expertise of all the experts involved in the project, while still retaining control over the direction and vision of your business plan.

If you’re trying to determine how much it will cost to work with a business plan writing service, take some time to explore all of your options before making a final decision. You should consider both pricing models as well as the qualifications offered by the various service providers in your area. Doing so will ensure you find the most qualified choice for your business planning needs.

You Can Write It Yourself

If you are a newer entrepreneur or business owner or you are trying to save money, there are several free resources available online to help you write your business plan. The Small Business Administration (SBA) and your local Chamber of Commerce offer business plan services, workshops, or courses that can help you get started. Using a business plan template is a great way to quickly and easily complete your plan, especially if you are unfamiliar with the business planning process.

Some business owners are comfortable writing business plans without any outside help. This option offers you complete control over the process, but it typically takes more time than you have to spare. For that reason, not writing your own plan is usually recommended for experienced business owners, even those with plenty of business plan writing experience.

In most cases, experienced business owners who write their own business plans will have a better idea of what elements are needed and how they should be presented. However, it can still take considerable time to compile all the necessary information into a cohesive business plan that meets your audience’s needs. And it’s one thing to write a business plan; it’s another to write a business plan that gets investors or lenders to write you a large funding check.

A Combination of Business Planning Services

If your budget doesn’t allow you to hire a comprehensive business plan service, combining outside services with writing your own business plan may be the best option. This approach gives you complete control over the process, while still allowing you to benefit from an expert business plan writer’s advice. It is also a great option for entrepreneurs who don’t have time to write their plan but aren’t quite ready to hire someone else to do it either.

Other business services that could help you include:

As with any decision affecting your company’s future, you should take the time to explore all of your options before committing to a specific service provider. The goal is not only to find the best fit for your budget and needs but also to find a business plan consulting service that can meet your expectations and deliver quality content on time and within budget.

Is It Worth It To Use a Professional Business Plan Writing Service?

As with anything else, you’ll get what you pay for. If you are short on time or don’t have the writing skills required to write a business plan, it may be worth considering a professional writing service. These services can help you complete the necessary research and planning to get a comprehensive business plan written for your company.

How Growthink Can Help Your Business

Since 1999, Growthink has developed thousands of business plans for entrepreneurs and business owners to start and/or grow their businesses. From small business owners to Fortune 500 companies, we have provided a variety of business plan services to meet the needs of each client.

Our business planning services include:

No matter what product or service you choose, we wish you success in your business venture


How Much Do Business Plan Writing Services Cost?

The expense of a business plan varies greatly depending on which kind of plan you need. Some plans could be as straightforward as a executive summary and also a one-page financial worksheet, while some can be well more than 50 pages and contain many years of financial projections. Decide what type of business plan your company needs so as to help ascertain the cost of this strategy.

Hiring a Business Plan Writing Service It’s possible to hire a business plan writing service to write your business plan. More complex plans can range into the high thousands, based upon the firm, the amount of staff members operating on the strategy along with the range of the plan. Costs typically start at $1,500 for more simple projects.

Hiring A Traditional Consulting Company Using a traditional consulting company to write your business plan might make more sense when you are looking to raise a larger amount with your business plan. A lengthy plan with five years of financial projections might still cost a few thousand dollars, however, the total price can be much higher depending on the scope of work and the amount of consulting required. Some traditional consultants charge by the hour and let the customer decide how many hours client can budget for the work. For larger corporate jobs, expect to find costs ranging $25,000 to $50,000.

Our approach at GoBusinessPlans is to custom scope each engagement based on the the specific requirements of each client. Our business plan writing services typically cost between $2,000 and $10,000 depending on the work that needs to be completed.

Writing It Yourself The least expensive way to acquire a business plan usually is to compose it yourself. Purchasing the software to speed up this procedure ranges from $50 to $500, and free resources on the Web can offer both templates and suggestions. The U.S. Small Business Administration offers guides, outlines and blogs, and the SBA’s Business Strategy Tool provides step-by-step assistance in building your plan. For companies with very low startup capital, this can be the ideal option.

Combining Services Another option for businesses looking for a business plan option is potentially doing some of the initial leg work and then working with a business plan company to finalize the business plan.  A business plan can cost less if you do the research and make a draft on your own, and then introduce it to a company or consultant for review and completion. For instance, you could complete the written part of the company plan and have somebody else help with the financials. This is sometimes a good option for entrepreneurs that will articulate their business idea clearly but may need help putting together financial projections that are realistic. Review choices are offered for those who need an expert eye to check at their plan before proceeding.

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How Much Does a Business Plan Cost?

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A business plan is essential for every new business, from home operations to multimillion-dollar corporations. The cost varies depending on the type of business plan you need.

Companies with specific planning needs such as market research, financial projections, or limited time can hire a business plan company to prepare a business plan.

Generally, a professionally written business plan company will charge between $2,000 and $20,000 for a professional business plan . Business plan costs vary depending on the type of industry, location, market size, business funding, and time in business.

Rates can be higher for companies that plan to use new or complicated technologies, disruptive models, have complex revenue streams, or require substantial investment capital.

You should decide what type of business plan you need to determine the average cost to write a business plan.

How Much Does Business Plan Writing Services Cost

Hiring A Professional Business Plan Consultant

Diy business plans.

A Do-It-Yourself (DIY) is an inexpensive option for writing your own business plan. You can buy software or business plan templates to speed up this process for $20 to $300, but you can also find free resources on the web that provide business plan templates and suggestions. DIY business plans are an excellent resource for startups with very low startup capital.

You can use our sample business plans to create a business plan that follows a complete structure and format, so you won’t be left with an empty page wondering what to write.

Make your vision a reality! A Wise Business Plan template  includes everything needed to WOW your audience. Includes business plan in Word and business plan financials in Excel. Simply fill in the blanks and print. Make your vision a reality! A Wise business plan Template includes everything needed to WOW your audience. Simply fill in the blanks and print. In addition, you can download our 300+ free business plan templates covering a range of industries.

Business Plan Writing Guide

Business plans can be challenging to write. However, with our “ how-to-write a business plan guide , ” you will surely be able to complete your plan. You can use these resources to learn what to include in your business plan and the types of language used in these professional documents.

Freelance Business Plan Writer

Business plan writers range from $79 to $149 an hour. Most projects will take a minimum of 20-30 hours for the business plan writer to complete.

You can hire a professional  business plan writer  to write your business plan. Some larger, more complex plans can run higher in price, depending on the type of project and the number of staff members involved. For simple projects, costs start at $2,000 and can go up to $20,000+ depending on the scope.


A Bank Business Plan includes every piece of the planning puzzle that a bank loan officer would need to see before signing off on the funding. This plan focuses on professionally developed financials to show the ability to repay a bank loan successfully.

Ideal for: Anyone seeking traditional bank funding or looking to secure a Small Business Administration (SBA) loan.

Bank Business Plan


An investor business plan will showcase Return on Investment (ROI) and offer a compelling description of the company’s leaders’ experience, commitment and business acumen. This plan seeks to instill confidence in investors while also getting them excited about your company. An investor business plan will show that the company has strong potential to reward those who invest while mitigating risk. 

Ideal for: Anyone looking to work with venture capitalists, angel investors or private investors that provide funding in return for equity in the company.

Bonus Tip: 5 Best Places to Find a Venture Capitalist

Investor Business Plan


A franchise business plan will demonstrate how the location being funded is supported by the strength of the parent organization, while also demonstrating that the new location adds value to the over-arching company. Franchise business plans are a mix of information on the parent company and the franchise being funded. They place heavy emphasis on the market that would support the new location. 

Ideal for: Anyone looking to fund a franchise. This kind of business plan can also help make a case for a new franchise location to the parent company, increasing the chances that your location will be approved.

Bonus Tip: Discover   how to buy a franchise with no money ?

franchise business plan


A strategic business plan is a valuable tool for business builders, allowing them to prepare for the future by aligning their business goals with their market, industry predictions and plans for structuring the company as it grows. This kind of business plan is a true roadmap to success that can help a savvy business owner define and meet goals more quickly by staying one step ahead of growing pains and economic turbulence. The plan is also commonly used for Mergers & Acquisitions (M&A). 

Ideal for: Anyone who wants a goal-oriented strategy for growing a business quickly and strategically while minimizing distractions and dead-end side projects.

Strategic Business Plan


Description: Rather than focusing on Return on Investment (ROI) or profit margins, a Nonprofit (501 (C)(3) business plan is created to demonstrate good stewardship of funds received in support of the company’s mission. As with any other business plan, a nonprofit plan will include goals and market needs assessments, along with financials, but the mission of the plan will be to show that those leading the nonprofit have the experience, knowledge and goals in place to manage funds received from any source.

Ideal for: Those looking to start a Nonprofit (501 (C)(3) organization.


FEASIBILITY STUDIES – Starting at $10,000

Understanding the viability of a business concept or project ahead of time saves time, money and stress. A professional feasibility study from Wise is like a window into the future of the client’s business.

Feasibility Studies


A vital business document, a PPM is the key that opens the door to private investment transactions. Our writers work closely with business owners to ensure that each client’s Private Placement Memorandum is both compelling and compliant. 

private placement memorandum


Description: The United States offers several different visa programs allowing immigrants with valuable business skills to enter and work in the United States (Read below to learn more about each type of visa.) Immigration business plans must show that the person seeking a visa and the company sponsoring the applicant or being created meets very strict government guidelines about required skills and job creation. 

Ideal for: Those looking to bring talent from another country to boost growth or those seeking to immigrate to the United States for the purpose of creating a business.

L-1 visa : An L-1 visa is a non-immigrant, short-term visa often used to allow company leaders or specialists to assist in specific initiatives. L-1 visas are available to employees of an international company with offices in both the United States and abroad.

E-2 visa : An E-2 visa is an investor visa that allows investors to enter and work in the United States to direct and control a substantial investment in the company. This is a renewable visa.  

EB-5 visa: An EB-5 visa allows investors to begin becoming a permanent United States resident. This visa requires an investment of at least $1,050,000 and the creation of at least ten jobs for American workers. In areas of high unemployment, the investment requirement drops to $800,000.

Immigration Business Plan

Hiring an Accounting or Law Firm

Are you looking to go public? Hiring a CPA or law firm to write your business plan may be a good option. Securities attorneys and CPAs will require a retainer to start your project. Most projects begin between $50,000 to $100,000 with an hourly rate of $250-$500, depending on how many people are working on the project and their skillsets. 

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Great blog. It gave me enough information to write a business plan on my own. I can say that I can be a business plan writer for my own business.

You could certainly see your skills within the work you write. The arena hopes for even more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to mention how they believe. At all times follow your heart.

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Microsoft 365 is the productivity cloud designed to help everyone achieve what matters, in their work and life, with best-in-class Microsoft 365 apps, intelligent cloud services, and advanced security.

There are no price or feature changes for small and medium business plans. The same plans are available and only the plan names have been updated.

Install Microsoft 365 apps on up to five PCs or Macs, five tablets, and five mobile devices. Hybrid Windows devices, such as the Microsoft Surface Pro, count as either a PC or a tablet.

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cost for a business plan

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Business plan templates take your business to the next level

If you’re starting a new business, or changing or expanding an existing one, it’s critical to have a solid plan to guide your decisions. A Microsoft business plan template can help get you started. Business plan templates offer step-by-step instructions and prefabricated slides for your executive summary, company overview, financial plan, and more. You’ll even find a business plan template for specific industries including business plan templates in Word for healthcare providers, professional services, and retail. Enlist your management team, or for a sole proprietor, trusted family and friends, to contribute to your plan using a checklist business plan template in Excel. Assign tasks and deadlines to keep everyone accountable and on track. There are also free business plan templates to help you determine your business’ legal structure, define your target audience, and map out your marketing plan. Explore all the business plan template options to find what suits your needs.

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Planning, Startups, Stories

Tim berry on business planning, starting and growing your business, and having a life in the meantime., business plan financials: starting costs.

It’s really important to have an idea of what you need before you start. Continuing with my series on standard business plan financials , startups need to project starting costs. Starting costs set up a starting balance, which is necessary to plan cash flow. And the starting costs are critical to determining whether a startup can bootstrap or needs outside funding. For existing companies that already have financial results, projections start with the expected ending balance of the previous period. But for startups, it’s about starting costs.

Starting costs are essentially the sum of two kinds of spending. You can estimate them both in two simple lists:

A Simple Starting Costs Example

I’ve used a bicycle store as an example in several posts that are part of this series of standard business plan financials. Here’s a visual in spreadsheet form, of sample starting costs for a hypothetical bicycle store.

Sample Starting Costs

Notice that the lists for estimating starting costs, on the left in the illustration above, are matched to another list of starting funding, on the right side of the illustration. Books have to balance, so the initial estimates need to include not just the money you spend, but also where it comes from. In the case above, Garrett had to find $124,500, and you can see that he financed it with Accounts Payable, debt, and investment in various categories.

Another Simple Starting Costs Example

Here is another simple example: the starting costs worksheet that Magda developed for the restaurant I used for a sample sales forecast . Magda’s list includes rent and payroll, the same as in her monthly spending, but here they are included in starting costs because these expenses happen before the launch.

Sample Starting Costs

I included rent and payroll because they point out the importance in timing. The difference between these as startup expenses and running expenses is timing, and nothing else. Magda could have chosen to plan startup expenses as a running worksheet on expenses, starting a few months before launch, as in the illustration below. The launch in this case is early January, so the expenses for October through December are startup expenses. I prefer the separate lists, because I like the way the two lists create an estimate of starting costs. But that’s an option.

Alternate Starting Expenses

The LivePlan Alternative

If you’re a LivePlan user, the LivePlan interface assumes this method and has a more intuitive interface than the spreadsheet version I’m showing in this post. For LivePlan, you start your plan when you start spending, regardless of launch date. So the spending you do for rent and salaries and such, before launch, is part of the flow, as above. Also, LivePlan has its own guided way of helping you figure out what assets you need, how much they cost, and how you are going to finance starting costs, to set up your balance. And the LivePlan cash flow estimator will help you decide how much cash you need, so you don’t have to follow the spreadsheet method here (below).

How to Estimate Your Starting Costs

Obviously the goal with starting costs isn’t just to track them, but to estimate them ahead of time so you have a better idea, before you start a new business, of what the financial costs might be. Breaking the items down into a practical list makes the educated guess a lot easier. Ideally, you know the business you want to start, you are already familiar with the industry, so you can do a useful estimate for most of the startup costs from your own experience. If you don’t have enough firsthand knowledge, then you should be talking to people who do. For others, such as insurance, legal costs, or graphic design for logos, call some providers or brokers, and talk to partners; educate those guesses.

Starting Cash is the Hardest and Most Important

How much cash do you need in the bank, as you launch? That’s usually the toughest starting cost question. It’s also prone to misinformation, such as those alleged rules of thumb you can find everywhere, saying you need to have a year’s worth of expenses, or six months’ worth, before you start. It’s not that simple. For most businesses, the startup cash isn’t a matter of what’s ideal, or what some expert says is the rule of thumb – it’s how much money you have, can get, and are willing to risk.

The best way is to do a Projected Cash Flow while leaving the supposed starting cash balance at zero, which shows how much (at least in theory, according to assumptions) the startup really needs in cash to support the business as it grows, before it reaches a monthly cash flow break-even point. Magda did that to determine the $12,000 needed as starting cash for her restaurant. Note how, in the illustration here, the lowest point in cash is slightly less than $12,000:

Estimating Startup Cash

That low point comes, theoretically, in the third month of the business, March. The low point is $11,609. Obviously that’s just an educated guess, but it’s based on assumptions for sales forecast, expense budget, and important cash flow factors including sales on account and purchasing inventory. So it’s better than a stab in the dark, or some rule of thumb. Just as an example, the total spending with the estimates shown here, the theoretical “year’s worth of spending,” is $182,000 (which you don’t see on the illustration, by the way, but take my word for it). The total for the first six months is $93,000. If Magda sticks to those old formulas, she can’t start the business. She is able to raise enough money, between loans and her savings, to put $12,000 into the starting cash balance. So that’s what she does. Then she launches and continues to have her monthly reviews, and watch the performance of all key indicators very carefully.

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cost for a business plan

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cost for a business plan

How Much Does Сost of a Business Plan?

AUG.27, 2020

how much does a professional business plan cost

Experienced and aspiring entrepreneurs often ask about the business plan cost  plantation , “ how much does a professional business plan cost ?” Well, the answer is not as cut and dry as you would think. The business plan writing services cost  varies greatly depending on the type of program you are seeking. Some plans are quite straightforward and require no more than a single financial worksheet.

On the other hand, how much does a professional business plan writing services cost  can of more than fifty pages and have financial projections for several years? It would be best to decide the type of program your organization needs to determine the business plan writing services cost .

You may come across tons of people who write their business plans without assistance. They do so to save money and to ensure the program matches their preferred timeline. However, acquiring expert help could be an excellent long-term investment. Why? Because people skilled in creating business plans know the ins, outs, and technicalities of making a foolproof professional business plan cost, ensuring it contains all the necessary details and depth to execute your program the right way.

What Does the Price Depend on?

You might be asking yourself, “what does the cost of a business plan ?”. As mentioned earlier, the business plan cost liest varies significantly depending on who is writing it. Every business needs a comprehensive plan to get started. Almost every program differs in detail, length, style, dimension, and industry – these are essential elements that make up a cost of a business plan .

For example, a staffing agency generally requires thorough recruitment strategies in their business plans, especially when compared to a single operator and owner businesses like financial planning. Individual variations play a critical role in determining a plan’s price. The more details, research, and time a program requires, the higher its price could get. Let us look at some other factors that impact a business plan’s price:

Typical Cost of a Business Plan

As discussed earlier, how much does a professional business plan costs differ between the degrees of difficulty and length and service providers? However, if you are snooping for typical rates, it would help to know that these prices could be as low as $500 and as high as $15,000. Some agencies and solo plan creators even charge higher, especially if your business program is complex.

Hiring a traditional consulting service to write your company’s business plan cost   would be the best choice and make the most sense. Why? Because while hiring someone to create a business plan might be business plan cost ly, it will benefit your company in the long run. With your operations and procedures aligned, your organization will become a profit-generating machine, thanks to a well thought out and professionally made plan.

Remember, consultation and the scope of your work play a critical role in determining a plan’s price, so it would be best to keep these elements in mind before hiring someone to write the plan. Some consultants also charge fees by the hour, and you’d be shocked to learn that the business plans for some corporations can business plan writing services cost  anywhere between twenty-five to fifty thousand dollars.

However, if you are a small business owner, there is no need to worry as you will find a service or consultant within the budget of your business plan preparation fees.

professional business plan cost

Formatting of Professional Business Plan

Fortunately, there is no wrong or right way to create a business plan. The needs of your business take center stage no matter how your format your company’s plan. Most business programs fall into the following categories:

Traditional Plans

These business plan types are quite popular. They utilize a standard structure encouraging you to provide details about essential sections of your organization. The most traditional business plan cost of a business plan  contains dozens of detailed pages and require more time to prepare.

A traditional business plan might be suitable if you want to focus on details and create a comprehensive program. You don’t have to stick to a particular outline when creating a traditional business plan. However, it would be best if you discuss the following elements:

Lean Startup Plans

Lean startup plans are not as common as traditional business plans. However, their structure is also pretty standard. They only summarize the most critical points of your program and require minimal preparation time (an hour or two maximum.) Some lean startup plans even end within one page.

People looking to start or explain their business quickly should use these plans. They are incredibly flexible and can describe your company’s value proposition, finances, customers, and infrastructure through straightforward charts. Here is a list of things you must incorporate in your lean startup plan:

Are you an aspiring entrepreneur looking for professional business plan writing services cost ? Look no further than OGS Capital ! We have been developing business plans for large and small organizations for a while, providing strategic guidance and advice to improve profitability. Get in touch with us, and our highly experienced team will help create a unique plan tailored for your business’s goals and aspirations.

OGSCapital’s team has assisted thousands of entrepreneurs with top-rate business plan development, consultancy and analysis. They’ve helped thousands of SME owners secure more than $1.5 billion in funding, and they can do the same for you.

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Business Plan Example and Template

Learn how to create a business plan

What is a Business Plan?

A business plan is a document that contains the operational and financial plan of a business, and details how its objectives will be achieved. It serves as a road map for the business and can be used when pitching investors or financial institutions for debt or equity financing .

Business Plan

A business plan should follow a standard format and contain all the important business plan elements. Typically, it should present whatever information an investor or financial institution expects to see before providing financing to a business.

Contents of a Business Plan

A business plan should be structured in a way that it contains all the important information that investors are looking for. Here are the main sections of a business plan:

1. Title Page

The title page captures the legal information of the business, which includes the registered business name, physical address, phone number, email address, date, and the company logo.

2. Executive Summary

The executive summary is the most important section because it is the first section that investors and bankers see when they open the business plan. It provides a summary of the entire business plan. It should be written last to ensure that you don’t leave any details out. It must be short and to the point, and it should capture the reader’s attention. The executive summary should not exceed two pages.

3. Industry Overview

The industry overview section provides information about the specific industry that the business operates in. Some of the information provided in this section includes major competitors, industry trends, and estimated revenues. It also shows the company’s position in the industry and how it will compete in the market against other major players.

4. Market Analysis and Competition

The market analysis section details the target market for the company’s product offerings. This section confirms that the company understands the market and that it has already analyzed the existing market to determine that there is adequate demand to support its proposed business model.

Market analysis includes information about the target market’s demographics , geographical location, consumer behavior, and market needs. The company can present numbers and sources to give an overview of the target market size.

A business can choose to consolidate the market analysis and competition analysis into one section or present them as two separate sections.

5. Sales and Marketing Plan

The sales and marketing plan details how the company plans to sell its products to the target market. It attempts to present the business’s unique selling proposition and the channels it will use to sell its goods and services. It details the company’s advertising and promotion activities, pricing strategy, sales and distribution methods, and after-sales support.

6. Management Plan

The management plan provides an outline of the company’s legal structure, its management team, and internal and external human resource requirements. It should list the number of employees that will be needed and the remuneration to be paid to each of the employees.

Any external professionals, such as lawyers, valuers, architects, and consultants, that the company will need should also be included. If the company intends to use the business plan to source funding from investors, it should list the members of the executive team, as well as the members of the advisory board.

7. Operating Plan

The operating plan provides an overview of the company’s physical requirements, such as office space, machinery, labor, supplies, and inventory . For a business that requires custom warehouses and specialized equipment, the operating plan will be more detailed, as compared to, say, a home-based consulting business. If the business plan is for a manufacturing company, it will include information on raw material requirements and the supply chain.

8. Financial Plan

The financial plan is an important section that will often determine whether the business will obtain required financing from financial institutions, investors, or venture capitalists. It should demonstrate that the proposed business is viable and will return enough revenues to be able to meet its financial obligations. Some of the information contained in the financial plan includes a projected income statement , balance sheet, and cash flow.

9. Appendices and Exhibits

The appendices and exhibits part is the last section of a business plan. It includes any additional information that banks and investors may be interested in or that adds credibility to the business. Some of the information that may be included in the appendices section includes office/building plans, detailed market research , products/services offering information, marketing brochures, and credit histories of the promoters.

Business Plan Template

Business Plan Template

Here is a basic template that any business can use when developing its business plan:

Section 1: Executive Summary

Section 2: Industry Overview

Section 3: Market Analysis and Competition

Section 4: Sales and Marketing Plan

Section 5: Management Plan

Section 6: Operating Plan

Section 7: Financial Plan

Section 8: Appendices and Exhibits

Related Readings

Thank you for reading CFI’s guide to Business Plans. To keep learning and advancing your career, the following CFI resources will be helpful:

cost for a business plan

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14 Business Startup Costs Business Owners Need to Know

Randa Kriss

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money .

Deciding to start a business is exciting, but can also be daunting if you're a new entrepreneur. Calculating business startup costs, worrying about long-term profitability, securing startup funding — it can all be pretty stressful.

The question of costs is critical because the initial investment can be significant. A Kauffman Foundations study shows the average cost to be around $30,000, and costs tend to increase each year.

Fortunately, certain types of businesses, such as micro-businesses and home-based companies, have lower financial entry barriers. Here, we’ve put together a list of 14 different types of business startup costs you’ll need to consider when launching your company.

How to calculate the cost of starting a business

Drafting a business plan is the best way to estimate your business startup costs. Within your plan, the financial projections section should estimate your revenue, profit, and expenses for the next three to five years.

There are other resources to estimate your finances as well, such as the SBA’s startup costs worksheet . Templates will help you estimate your initial investment costs, so you know how much capital you should request when you seek startup funding.

Keep in mind that many of the business startup costs we list below are recurring. You'll need to cover these costs over a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis — think rent, office supplies, and payroll. Other expenses, like the incorporation fee or office furniture, are one-time costs.

When calculating your business startup costs, a good rule of thumb is to be able to cover six months’ worth of expenses upfront. So don’t count on your business’s revenue to start easing your costs until at least after that early period is over. You’ll want a cushion while you get your feet under you and work on attracting business.

How Much Do You Need?

14 business startup costs to plan for

Although this is a typical list of business startup costs, your actual startup expenses depend entirely upon your specific business and industry.

Here are some typical business startup costs to plan for:

1. Equipment: $10,000 to $125,000

Almost every business will need to finance equipment immediately. Equipment costs for startups can range anywhere from $10,000 to $125,000, depending on the industry and size of the company.

For example, if you’re starting your own moving or shipping company, you’ll need to finance a truck. If you’re opening a restaurant, you’ll need commercial-grade ovens, stoves, dishware, and cooking utensils. If you own a hair salon, you’ll need styling chairs. And nearly any business will require computers.

Of course, these costs range according to your industry and the size of your business. Hiring employees will incur additional costs, as you may need to secure individual equipment, as well.

2. Incorporation fees: Under $300

One of your first to-dos when setting up a business is to choose a business entity, which has tax, legal, and financial implications.

If you decide to incorporate your business or form a limited liability company, you’ll need to file articles of incorporation or articles of organization, respectively, with your state. The filing fee can range from $50 to as high as $725 depending on the state. However, the fee is under $300 in the majority of states.

Even if you’re not incorporating, you’ll probably need to apply for federal or state licensing or permits. The types of documentation you'll need will vary based on your industry and location. For example, businesses within the agriculture or aviation sectors require federal licensing. Service-based sectors may need to have trade-specific licenses. And retail companies will likely need sales tax licenses or permits.

3. Office space: $100 to $1,000 per employee per month

Paying for an office or retail space will be a sizeable portion of your fixed costs, whether you rent or buy. You might spend between $100 per employee per month up to $1,000 per employee per month — again, it will depend on the type of space you're using.

You can mitigate these costs if you work from home in the beginning, or look into coworking spaces — both ideal for smaller businesses. And if you own a service-based business, you can travel directly to clients to further decrease overhead costs.

4. Inventory: 17% to 25% of your total budget

If you’re in the retail, wholesale, manufacturing, or distribution sector, you'll likely need to secure inventory to sell, as soon as you possibly can.

Knowing how much inventory to carry can be tricky: If you have too much inventory, you risk spoilage or damage. If you have too little, you risk losing customers who won't wait for items on backorder. This is especially true for seasonal businesses where inventory can vary drastically year-round.

You should allocate between 17% to 25% of your budget to inventory, depending on your industry. When you’re first starting out, consider securing more inventory. You'll want to attract customers and generate as much revenue as you can in your company's early stages.

» MORE: Just-in-time inventory: What is it and which businesses should use it?

5. Marketing: Below 10% of your total budget (even 0%)

Marketing materials might include physical materials, like signs, banners, and business cards. You might also consider paid ads, as well as more creative options, like videos and giveaways, that might require you to hire a consultant or a video producer.

Courtney Barbee, COO at The Bookkeeper, recommends keeping overall marketing costs to a minimum. Specifically, strive to keep your ad materials under 10% of your budget.

The good news? You can do the bulk of your small business marketing, for free. Thanks to social media and other online marketing strategies, advertising costs are often much lower for small businesses just starting now than they would have been 20 years ago.

6. Website: Around $40 per month

When building your business website, you'll want it to look professional, be easy to navigate, and display information about your services, products, hours, and contact information.

Fortunately, services like Wix, Squarespace, and Weebly, make creating a website easy and cost-effective. These content management systems are sometimes free, but premium plans will come at a monthly or yearly subscription cost:

Wix : $13 to $39 per month for a premium plan.

Squarespace : $12 to $18 per month billed annually, or $26 billed month to month.

Weebly : $5 to $25 per month.

Wix and Weebly also offer basic, free website builders. If you’re relatively tech-savvy, it’s easy to build a website through one of these services, no coding background required. But if you’re not very familiar with computers, you may want to hire someone to build the website — which, of course, is an additional cost (although it might become a worthwhile investment).

7. Office furniture and supplies: 10% of your total budget

Office furniture and supplies add up fast. If you’re operating in a traditional nine-to-five office environment, then every employee will need a desk, a chair, a computer, and a phone. Add in break room appliances, small office supplies, and computer programs, like your accounting software, and you’ll reach a hefty sum.

Again, that sum varies depending on the tools your business needs to operate, and the number of employees you need to outfit. Nate Masterson, the marketing manager at Maple Holistics, estimates that the total cost for office furniture and supplies would be around $5,000. In all, though, Masterson recommends keeping your furniture and supply costs to approximately 10% of your budget.

8. Utilities: Around $2 per square foot of office space

In addition to the fixed costs of rent and a down payment, you’ll be responsible for paying the electric, gas, water, internet, and phone bills for your office space. According to Iota Communications, the average cost of utilities for commercial buildings is $2.10 per square foot.

If you intend to install HVAC units, that will incur an additional cost — usually a couple of thousand dollars, not including installation fees and upkeep.

9. Payroll: 25% to 50% of your total budget

You need to pay your employees, even in the early stages, where you’re not bringing in much revenue. Remember, payroll includes all of the following:


Overtime pay.

Paid time off.

Of course, payroll costs will vary across startups. Typically, an employee will cost 1.25x to 1.4x their salary. For example, an employee on a $40,000 salary will actually cost you around $54,000 after factoring in various payroll tax costs and insurance.

A conservative payroll budget could work if you’re a sole proprietor, or if you’re running a small enterprise and use mostly 1099 contractors — and either is a pretty likely scenario for most startups.

10. Professional consultants: Between $1,000 and $5,000 per year

It’s tempting to take a DIY approach for all your business operations. After all, who knows your business best? But working with experts and professionals can be worth the investment.

For example, certified public accountants can explain the different legal structures, help you choose an employee benefit program, and ensure you're fulfilling your responsibilities as an employer. When tax season rolls around, they’ll prepare your tax returns and help you save on your taxes.

You don't need to hire a full-time accountant either. But it’s often a good idea to consult with your accountant on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis to review your financial statements, and for general financial guidance and advice. Consulting with an attorney regularly can also save you from major legal mistakes like failing to trademark your logo or developing relationships with vendors without a contract in place.

Every CPA and lawyer charges different hourly rates. Rates and additional fees vary depending on the number and level of difficulty involved in the tasks you need outsourced, the time it takes to complete your projects, and your consultant’s tenure. However, you can mitigate these costs by taking on some basic tasks yourself, only outsourcing the most complicated projects. There are even some options to get free business legal advice.

And with the help of good business accounting software, you can handle basic bookkeeping, like processing and managing payroll, creating and tracking invoices, and managing your business bank account.

According to SCORE , all told, the majority of small business owners spend between $1,000 and $5,000 per year on administration tasks, including accounting and legal fees. But as a startup — and by taking advantage of those cost-cutting tactics we mentioned — you’ll probably err on the lower end of that spectrum.

11. Insurance: Average of $1,200 per year

Your business needs the same protections you provide to your health, home, and car. There are many different kinds of business insurance , including protection from customers that file a lawsuit against you and disaster insurance for potential fires that can shut down your restaurant for weeks.

The type of insurance your startup needs is entirely dependent on your business, industry, number of employees, and other risk factors. For instance, a sole proprietor running an online business has far fewer insurance requirements than a construction company with several employees.

Here are a few essential forms of insurance you should look into to protect yourself, and policy costs vary according to several different factors:

General liability insurance : About $400 to $800 per year. Your industry’s risk will be the most significant factor influencing the cost of your policy.

Commercial property insurance: Anywhere from $300 to $2,500+, depending on the value of the property and its assets, and a risk factor dependent upon the nature of the business and the location of the property.

Workers compensation insurance : Approximately $0.75 to $2.74 per $100 of payroll, depending on the business’s size, location, payroll, and risk.

Errors and omissions insurance: Approximately $2,000 to $5,000 per year, depending on your business’s size, industry, location, revenue, legal history, and the quality of your contracts and employee training procedures.

12. Taxes: Variable, but 21% corporate tax rate

When planning your budget, determining the exact amount to allocate toward business taxes can be confusing. It depends on your revenue (which is difficult to predict), your deductible expenses, and your business entity.

Under current federal law, corporations pay a flat 21% corporate income tax. For pass-through entities, business income and losses pass through to the owners' personal tax returns. Pass-through entities can claim a 20% deduction on income before paying their business taxes.

But know that you can often save money and time by working with a CPA. A skilled CPA will determine what you can deduct so that you pay as little as possible.

13. Travel: Variable

Not every new entrepreneur needs to factor travel into their business startup costs. But if you have a consulting business or you visit your customers directly, you will be traveling a lot. You'll need to factor in the price of transportation, food, and lodging — multiply these costs if you have multiple employees traveling. Be mindful of how quickly those costs add up.

Try to keep total travel costs to an absolute minimum so that you can allocate your revenue toward bigger expenses, like payroll and rent. And to make some returns on all that time on the road or in the air, consider using a travel business credit card, which can earn you points and miles for every dollar you spend. If you do have to travel frequently, keep the nonessentials like business class tickets to a minimum.

14. Shipping: Variable

Service-based businesses can probably stop reading here. But if you’re in retail, you might be shipping products to customers. If so, you’ll need to factor shipping into your startup costs, including packing materials and postage. Depending on what you’re sending, these costs can reach into the thousands of dollars.

Services like can ease the burden of shipping costs on small business owners. With this service, you can print postage without having to buy a costly postage meter. If possible, you can secure free or low-cost shipping boxes from your shipping service of choice.

How to save on startup costs

The costs of starting a business can certainly add up, with many expenses being non-negotiable. Do your research before you splurge on high-ticket purchases, and recognize that there are ways to take care of some of these startup costs on the cheap.

For example, using software like QuickBooks can save on the costs of hiring a professional bookkeeper. Working from home or using a coworking space is a cost-effective alternative to leasing office space. And leveraging social media can mitigate your marketing costs.

Some costs are worth the investment. Don’t buy poor-quality equipment just because it’s cheaper — you’ll lose time and money making repairs and eventually need to purchase new equipment. Hire a legal or accounting expert if you’re confused. And make sure your website and advertising campaigns are professional-looking and effective.

Secure funding

If you've calculated your business startup costs and now feel overwhelmed, know that there are plenty of resources to help you find startup financing.

Your initial funding will likely come from a combination of debt and equity financing. But keep in mind that debt financing options — small-business loans — are relatively limited for brand-new businesses. Most lenders only feel comfortable offering loans to established companies with hard evidence of profitability, as well as healthy credit, which most startups simply don’t have yet.

Some lenders work with startup business owners, so don’t completely rule it out if you think it’s your best option. Check out more information on how to get a loan to start a business if you think debt financing is the right move for you.

» MORE: How do business loans work?

Get a business credit card

Once you’ve established a legal entity for your business, we recommend applying for a business credit card.

The application is simple, and a business credit card is usually easier to qualify for than a traditional business loan. Also, you typically gain access to a higher credit limit than your personal card. More importantly, a business credit of card keeps your personal and business finances separate — essential if you wish to maintain your personal liability protections after forming an LLC or corporation.

Just make sure you’re not maxing out your credit card or charging more than you can repay. Both can harm your credit score, which might hurt your chances of securing a small business loan down the line.

Frequently asked questions

1. what is the average cost to start a small business.

The cost of starting a small business depends on the type and size of the business you’re opening and your industry. For example, opening a McDonald’s franchise can cost you $1 million, while starting a social media consulting company may cost less than $10,000. The average cost will vary on a case-by-case basis.

2. How do you calculate startup costs?

The most straightforward method for calculating your startup costs is to use a budget template. Your budget will break down your startup costs and recurring expenses — rent, office supplies, payroll, and more.

It’s prudent to cover six months’ worth of expenses minimum upfront; this financial cushion will support you in your business’s early stages when your profit margins might be slim.

3. Are business startup costs tax-deductible?

While the IRS does not recognize startup costs as capital expenditures, they do state that you can deduct $5,000 of business startup and $5,000 of organizational costs paid or incurred after October 22, 2004, but only if your total startup costs are $50,000 or less.

You can review IRS Publication 535 or consult a business accountant for additional information.

4. What is considered a startup cost?

A startup cost is any expense incurred when starting a new business. Startup costs will include equipment, incorporation fees, insurance, taxes, and payroll.

Although startup costs will vary by your business type and industry — an expense for one company may not apply to another. For example, a brick-and-mortar business will need to pay to rent a separate business location, unlike a home-based online consulting company.

The bottom line

Planning your business budget is one of the most stressful parts of entrepreneurship. But being realistic about estimating your business startup costs — and how much money you may need to borrow right away — will go a long way toward getting your company up and running.

This article originally appeared on JustBusiness, a subsidiary of NerdWallet.

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How To Write the Perfect Business Plan in 9 Steps (2023)

How to write a business plan: everything you need to know

A great business plan can help you clarify your strategy, identify potential roadblocks, decide what you’ll need in the way of resources, and evaluate the viability of your idea or your growth plans before you start a business .

Not every successful business launches with a formal business plan, but many founders find value in taking time to step back, research their idea and the market they’re looking to enter, and understand the scope and the strategy behind their tactics. That’s where writing a business plan comes in.

Table of Contents

What is a business plan?

Why write a business plan, business plan formats, how to write a business plan in 9 steps, tips for creating a small business plan, common mistakes when writing a business plan, prepare your business plan today, business plan faq.

A business plan is a document describing a business, its products or services, how it earns (or will earn) money, its leadership and staffing, its financing, its operations model, and many other details essential to its success.

We had a marketing background but not much experience in the other functions needed to run a fashion ecommerce business, like operations, finance, production, and tech. Laying out a business plan helped us identify the “unknowns” and made it easier to spot the gaps where we’d need help or, at the very least, to skill up ourselves. Jordan Barnett, Kapow Meggings

Investors rely on business plans to evaluate the feasibility of a business before funding it, which is why business plans are commonly associated with getting a loan. But there are several compelling reasons to consider writing a business plan, even if you don’t need funding.

If you’re looking for a structured way to lay out your thoughts and ideas, and to share those ideas with people who can have a big impact on your success, a business plan is an excellent starting point.

Free: Business Plan Template

Business planning is often used to secure funding, but plenty of business owners find writing a plan valuable, even if they never work with an investor. That’s why we put together a free business plan template to help you get started.

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Business plans can span from one page to multiple pages with detailed graphs and reports. There’s no one way to create a business plan. The goal is to convey the most important information about your company for readers.

Common types of business plans we see include, but are not limited to, the following:

Check out real-world examples of different business plans by reading The Road to Success: Business Plan Examples to Inspire Your Own .

Few things are more intimidating than a blank page. Starting your business plan with a structured outline and key elements for what you’ll include in each section is the best first step you can take.

Since an outline is such an important step in the process of writing a business plan, we’ve put together a high-level overview you can copy into your blank document to get you started (and avoid the terror of facing a blank page). You can also start with a free business plan template and use it to inform the structure of your plan.

Once you’ve got your business plan outline in place, it’s time to fill it in. We’ve broken it down by section to help you build your plan step by step.

1. Draft an executive summary

A good executive summary is one of the most crucial sections of your plan—it’s also the last section you should write.

The executive summary’s purpose is to distill everything that follows and give time-crunched reviewers (e.g., potential investors and lenders) a high-level overview of your business that persuades them to read further.

Again, it’s a summary, so highlight the key points you’ve uncovered while writing your plan. If you’re writing for your own planning purposes, you can skip the summary altogether—although you might want to give it a try anyway, just for practice.

Screenshot of an executive summary by FIGS

An executive summary shouldn’t exceed one page. Admittedly, that space constraint can make squeezing in all of the salient information a bit stressful—but it’s not impossible. Here’s what your business plan’s executive summary should include:

2. Describe your company

This section of your business plan should answer two fundamental questions: who are you, and what do you plan to do? Answering these questions with a company description provides an introduction to why you’re in business, why you’re different, what you have going for you, and why you’re a good investment bet. For example, clean makeup brand Saie shares a letter from its founder on the company’s mission and why it exists.

A letter from the Saie founder next to a picture of a woman putting on mascara

Clarifying these details is still a useful exercise, even if you’re the only person who’s going to see them. It’s an opportunity to put to paper some of the more intangible facets of your business, like your principles, ideals, and cultural philosophies.

Here are some of the components you should include in your company description:

Some of these points are statements of fact, but others will require a bit more thought to define, especially when it comes to your business’s vision, mission, and values. This is where you start getting to the core of why your business exists, what you hope to accomplish, and what you stand for.

This is where you start getting to the core of why your business exists, what you hope to accomplish, and what you stand for.

To define your values, think about all the people your company is accountable to, including owners, employees, suppliers, customers, and investors. Now consider how you’d like to conduct business with each of them. As you make a list, your core values should start to emerge.

Once you know your values, you can write a mission statement . Your statement should explain, in a convincing manner, why your business exists, and should be no longer than a single sentence.

As an example, Shopify’s mission statement is “Making commerce better for everyone.” It’s the “why” behind everything we do and clear enough that it needs no further explanation.

What impact do you envision your business having on the world once you’ve achieved your vision?

Next, craft your vision statement: what impact do you envision your business having on the world once you’ve achieved your vision? Phrase this impact as an assertion—begin the statement with “We will” and you’ll be off to a great start. Your vision statement, unlike your mission statement, can be longer than a single sentence, but try to keep it to three at most. The best vision statements are concise.

Finally, your company description should include both short- and long-term goals. Short-term goals, generally, should be achievable within the next year, while one to five years is a good window for long-term goals. Make sure all your goals are SMART: specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound.

3. Perform a market analysis

No matter what type of business you start, it’s no exaggeration to say your market can make or break it. Choose the right market for your products—one with plenty of customers who understand and need your product—and you’ll have a head start on success. If you choose the wrong market, or the right market at the wrong time, you may find yourself struggling for each sale.

Market analysis is a key section of your business plan, whether or not you ever intend for anyone else to read it.

This is why market research and analysis is a key section of your business plan, whether or not you ever intend for anyone else to read it. It should include an overview of how big you estimate the market is for your products, an analysis of your business’s position in the market, and an overview of the competitive landscape. Thorough research supporting your conclusions is important both to persuade investors and to validate your own assumptions as you work through your plan.

How big is your potential market?

The potential market is an estimate of how many people need your product. While it’s exciting to imagine sky-high sales figures, you’ll want to use as much relevant independent data as possible to validate your estimated potential market.

Since this can be a daunting process, here are some general tips to help you begin your research:

Some sources to consult for market data include government statistics offices, industry associations, academic research, and respected news outlets covering your industry.

SWOT analysis

A SWOT analysis looks at your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. What are the best things about your company? What are you not so good at? What market or industry shifts can you take advantage of and turn into opportunities? Are there external factors threatening your ability to succeed?

These breakdowns often are presented as a grid, with bullet points in each section breaking down the most relevant information—so you can probably skip writing full paragraphs here. Strengths and weaknesses—both internal company factors—are listed first, with opportunities and threats following in the next row. With this visual presentation, your reader can quickly see the factors that may impact your business and determine your competitive advantage in the market.

Here’s an example:

SWOT analysis

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Competitive analysis.

There are three overarching factors you can use to differentiate your business in the face of competition:

To understand which is the best fit, you’ll need to understand your business as well as the competitive landscape.

You’ll always have competition in the market, even with an innovative product, so it’s important to include a competitive overview in your business plan. If you’re entering an established market, include a list of a few companies you consider direct competitors and explain how you plan to differentiate your products and business from theirs.

You’ll always have competition in the market, even with an innovative product.

For example, if you’re selling jewelry, your competitive differentiation could be that, unlike many high-end competitors, you donate a percentage of your profits to a notable charity or pass savings on to your customers.

If you’re entering a market where you can’t easily identify direct competitors, consider your indirect competitors—companies offering products that are substitutes for yours. For example, if you’re selling an innovative new piece of kitchen equipment, it’s too easy to say that because your product is new, you have no competition. Consider what your potential customers are doing to solve the same problems your product solves.

4. Outline management and organization

A woman does research on a laptop sitting on the floor

The management and organization section of your business plan should tell readers about who’s running your company. Detail the legal structure of your business. Communicate whether you’ll incorporate your business as an S corporation or create a limited partnership or sole proprietorship.

If you have a management team, use an organizational chart to show your company’s internal structure, including the roles, responsibilities, and relationships between people in your chart. Communicate how each person will contribute to the success of your startup.

5. List your products and services

Your products or services will feature prominently in most areas of your business plan, but it’s important to provide a section that outlines key details about them for interested readers.

If you sell many items, you can include more general information on each of your product lines; if you only sell a few, provide additional information on each. For example, bag shop BAGGU sells a large selection of different types of bags, in addition to home goods and other accessories. Its business plan would list out those bags and key details about each.

Screenshot of BAGGU reusable bags on its website

Describe new products you’ll launch in the near future and any intellectual property you own. Express how they’ll improve profitability.

It’s also important to note where products are coming from—handmade crafts are sourced differently than trending products for a dropshipping business, for instance.

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6. perform customer segmentation.

A man looks at graphs on an ipad

Your ideal customer, also known as your target market, is the foundation of your marketing plan , if not your business plan as a whole. You’ll want to keep this person in mind as you make strategic decisions, which is why an overview of who they are is important to understand and include in your plan.

To give a holistic overview of your ideal customer, describe a number of general and specific demographic characteristics. Customer segmentation often includes:

This information will vary based on what you’re selling, but you should be specific enough that it’s unquestionably clear who you’re trying to reach—and more importantly, why you’ve made the choices you have based on who your customers are and what they value.

For example, a college student has different interests, shopping habits, and pricing sensitivity than a 50-year-old executive at a Fortune 500 company. Your business plan and decisions would look very different based on which one was your ideal customer.

7. Define a marketing plan

A screenshot of a tweet about a marketing plan

Your marketing efforts are directly informed by your ideal customer. Your marketing plan should outline your current decisions and your future strategy, with a focus on how your ideas are a fit for that ideal customer.

If you’re planning to invest heavily in > Instagram marketing , for example, it might make sense to include whether Instagram is a leading platform for your audience—if it’s not, that might be a sign to rethink your marketing plan.

Most marketing plans include information on four key subjects. How much detail you present on each will depend on both your business and your plan’s audience.

Promotion may be the bulk of your plan since you can more readily dive into tactical details, but the other three areas should be covered at least briefly—each is an important strategic lever in your marketing mix.

8. Provide a logistics and operations plan

Brown boxes stacked to the ceiling in a warehouse

Logistics and operations are the workflows you’ll implement to make your ideas a reality. If you’re writing a business plan for your own planning purposes, this is still an important section to consider, even though you might not need to include the same level of detail as if you were seeking investment.

Cover all parts of your planned operations, including:

This section should signal to your reader that you’ve got a solid understanding of your supply chain and strong contingency plans in place to cover potential uncertainty. If your reader is you, it should give you a basis to make other important decisions, like how to price your products to cover your estimated costs, and at what point you plan to break even on your initial spending.

9. Make a financial plan

A laptop sits open with numbers and graphs on the screen

No matter how great your idea is, and regardless of the effort, time, and money you invest, a business lives or dies based on its financial health. At the end of the day, people want to work with a business they expect to be viable for the foreseeable future.

The level of detail required in your financial plan will depend on your audience and goals, but typically you’ll want to include three major views of your financials: an income statement, a balance sheet, and a cash-flow statement. It also may be appropriate to include financial data and projections.

Here’s a spreadsheet template that includes everything you’ll need to create an income statement, balance sheet, and cash-flow statement, including some sample numbers. You can edit it to reflect projections if needed.

Income statement

Your income statement is designed to give readers a look at your revenue sources and expenses over a given time period. With those two pieces of information, they can see the all-important bottom line or the profit or loss your business experienced during that time. If you haven’t launched your business yet, you can project future milestones of the same information.

Balance sheet

Your balance sheet offers a look at how much equity you have in your business. On one side, you list all your business assets (what you own), and on the other side, all your liabilities (what you owe). This provides a snapshot of your business’s shareholder equity, which is calculated as:

Assets - Liabilities = Equity

Cash flow statement

Your cash flow statement is similar to your income statement, with one important difference: it takes into account when revenues are collected and when expenses are paid.

When the cash you have coming in is greater than the cash you have going out, your cash flow is positive. When the opposite scenario is true, your cash flow is negative. Ideally, your cash flow statement will help you see when cash is low, when you might have a surplus, and where you might need to have a contingency plan to access funding to keep your business solvent .

It can be especially helpful to forecast your cash-flow statement to identify gaps or negative cash flow and adjust operations as required. Here’s a full guide to working through cash-flow projections for your business.

Download your copy of these templates to build out these financial statements for your business plan.

Know your audience

When you know who will be reading your plan—even if you’re just writing it for yourself to clarify your ideas—you can tailor the language and level of detail to them. This can also help you make sure you’re including the most relevant information and figure out when to omit sections that aren’t as impactful.

Have a clear goal

You’ll need to put in more work and deliver a more thorough plan if your goal is to secure funding for your business versus working through a plan for yourself or even your team.

Invest time in research

Sections of your business plan will primarily be informed by your ideas and vision, but some of the most crucial information you’ll need requires research from independent sources. This is where you can invest time in understanding who you’re selling to, whether there’s demand for your products, and who else is selling similar products or services.

Keep it short and to the point

No matter who you’re writing for, your business plan should be short and readable—generally no longer than 15 to 20 pages. If you do have additional documents you think may be valuable to your audience and your goals, consider adding them as appendices.

Keep the tone, style, and voice consistent

This is best managed by having a single person write the plan or by allowing time for the plan to be properly edited before distributing it.

Use a business plan software

Writing a business plan isn’t the easiest task for business owners. But it’s important for anyone starting or expanding a business. Fortunately, there are tools to help with everything from planning, drafting, creating graphics, syncing financial data, and more. Business plan software also have templates and tutorials to help you finish a comprehensive plan in hours, rather than days.

A few curated picks include:

For a more in-depth look at the available options, read Get Guidance: 6 Business Plan Software to Help Write Your Future .

Other articles on business plans would never tell you what we’re about to tell you: your business plan can fail. The last thing you want is for time and effort to go down the drain. Avoid these common mistakes:

Read through the following business plan example. You can download a copy in Microsoft Word or Google Docs and use it to inspire your own business planning.

Download sample business plan example (.doc)

A business plan can help you identify clear, deliberate next steps for your business, even if you never plan to pitch investors—and it can help you see gaps in your plan before they become issues. Whether you’ve written a business plan for a new online business idea , a retail storefront, growing your established business, or purchasing an existing business , you now have a comprehensive guide and the information you need to help you start working on the next phase of your own business.

Illustrations by Rachel Tunstall

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How Much Does a Business Plan Cost?

Just as businesses vary in size and value, the business plans that describe them vary in structure, length and cost to produce. Small business owners may find that they only need a basic outline of their company structure, goals and finances, but a larger company that's seeking capital investments will need to develop a more extensive document. The main factors that determine the total cost of producing the plan include the length of the plan, the amount of time the business invests in the document, and the tools or services used.

Cost in Time

The old adage that "time is money" is certainly true when putting together a business plan. Whether you're writing the content yourself or hiring a professional plan writer, the time it takes to create the document will cost you money. To determine exactly how much your time costs, multiply the value of one hour of your time by the number of hours you invest in developing the plan. If you hire a professional business-plan consultant, the rate will vary from person to person. Thumbtack, an online service that matches consumers with local professionals, quotes the average rate for a business plan consultant to range from $70 to $120 per hour. Consultants not only write plans; they also review plans and make recommendations, based on work you have completed.

Cost for Software

If you choose to write the plan, a variety of software is available to make that an easy task. Many of these tools are free downloadable templates from organizations such as the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA); SCORE, one of SBA's partner resource organizations; or, even one from Microsoft. Although these templates are fairly detailed and include instructions on how to fill them out, they are basic in design. If you want a business plan that has color charts for financials and a professionally designed layout, you can purchase software for a PC or an iPad. According to, these products offer a variety of features, and range from $8 to $200. Some packages include teaching units, as well as several example pages, in case you get stuck on a section. They may also include programming that calculates sales and growth projections, based on your actual figures, and they automatically create charts and graphs to include in the plan.

There are also business plan writing programs available from vendors who charge a monthly fee. Software from companies such as enloop and LivePlan, not only assist with researching, compiling data and writing the actual plan, they also maintain a dashboard for monitoring the health of your company, once you're up and running. Financial data can be tracked, along with your budget and sales goals, so that necessary adjustments can be made. Costs for these programs vary, as to service features and whether you pay month-to-month fee or a year's service up front. Expect to pay about $20 a month or less, if you sign up for an annual plan.

Cost of Professional Services

If your business plan looks like as if it is going to be more complex or if you really do not like to write, you may want to hire a professional consultant to do that for you. You will need to collaborate with the consultant on the project and you'll need to provide a lot of information, but the consultant can do the bulk of the writing. The consultant is also able to ask questions and guide your thinking so that you can formulate a comprehensive plan that best meets your needs. As an example, Ground Floor Partners, professional business growth consultants, quote their charges as ranging from $5,000 to more than $20,000, depending on the complexity of the project. These figures are based on their hourly rate and on any other special services they may include.

Business Plan vs. Business Canvas

Although professionals debate the value of one method over another, choosing between a traditional plan or a newer "lean" plan, called a business canvas, will also be a determining factor in your costs. A full business plan is a longer document that ranges from 30 to 100 pages, depending on the complexity of the project. Obviously, it will cost a great deal more -- in time and money -- to compile a document of this nature. On the other hand, a business canvas is a short snapshot of your company, typically only one page in length. It is a visual representation of your business, in which key points are summarized and presented. Although creating a business canvas still requires thoughtful consideration, this type of document is often recommended for smaller businesses that do not need to spend their finances on creating lengthy documentation or in seeking out business investors. Templates for this type of plan are available free online.

Elisabeth Natter is a business owner and professional writer. She has done public relations work for several nonprofit organizations and currently creates content for clients of her suburban Philadelphia communications and IT solutions company. Her writing is often focused on small business issues and best practices for organizations. Her work has appeared in the business sections of, bizfluent and Happenings Media. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Temple University.

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How Much Does a Business Plan Cost?

by Jessica Oman

Published on 20 Oct 2018

The cost of a business plan varies greatly depending on what type of plan you need. Some plans may be as simple as an executive summary and a one-page financial worksheet, while others can be well over 50 pages and contain several years of financial projections. Decide what type of business plan your company needs in order to help determine the cost of the plan.

You can write a business plan yourself to save money and write a business plan for just what your time is worth. Hiring expert help might be money well spent, and can range from about $1,500 to $50,000 depending on the amount of depth and detail needed.

Hiring a Firm

You can hire a consulting firm to write your business plan, but this is often the highest-cost option. However, you will get a comprehensive business plan written by a dedicated team of specialists in marketing, finance and industry. Business plans written by firms can cost many thousands of dollars. A typical small firm may offer simple business plans for as little as $1,500. More complex plans can range into the high thousands, depending on the firm, the number of team members working on the plan and the scope of the plan.

Private Consultants

Using a private consultant to write your business plan can be a cost-effective way to get a strong plan written by an industry expert. A lengthy plan with three years to five years of financial projections may still cost several thousand dollars, but the total cost can be much less than hiring a firm because only one or two individuals are doing the work. Some private consultants charge by the hour and let the client decide how many hours to budget for the work. However, fees for a business plan will still vary quite a bit. Consultants can charge around $3,000 to $15,000 for a complete business plan. For larger corporate projects, expect to see costs ranging $25,000 to $50,000.

Writing It Yourself

The cheapest way to get a business plan usually is to write it yourself. Buying the software to speed up the process ranges from $50 to $500, and free resources available on the Internet can offer both templates and suggestions. The U.S. Small Business Administration offers guides, blogs and outlines, and the SBA's Business Plan Tool provides step-by-step assistance in building your own plan. For businesses with very low start-up capital, this can be the best option.

Combining Services

A business plan can cost less if you do the research and create a draft on your own, and then present it to a company or consultant for review and completion. For example, you could complete the written portion of the business plan and then have someone else help with the financials. This can be a good option for entrepreneurs who can articulate their business idea clearly but may need help putting together realistic financial projections. Review options are available for those who want a professional eye to look at their plan before proceeding. Business plan review services can range from $49 to $1,500.

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Step-by-Step Guide to Writing a Simple Business Plan

Smartsheet Contributor Joe Weller

October 11, 2021

A business plan is the cornerstone of any successful company, regardless of size or industry. This step-by-step guide provides information on writing a business plan for organizations at any stage, complete with free templates and expert advice. 

Included on this page, you’ll find a step-by-step guide to writing a business plan and a chart to identify which type of business plan you should write . Plus, find information on how a business plan can help grow a business and expert tips on writing one .

What Is a Business Plan?

A business plan is a document that communicates a company’s goals and ambitions, along with the timeline, finances, and methods needed to achieve them. Additionally, it may include a mission statement and details about the specific products or services offered.

A business plan can highlight varying time periods, depending on the stage of your company and its goals. That said, a typical business plan will include the following benchmarks:

Startups, entrepreneurs, and small businesses all create business plans to use as a guide as their new company progresses. Larger organizations may also create (and update) a business plan to keep high-level goals, financials, and timelines in check.

While you certainly need to have a formalized outline of your business’s goals and finances, creating a business plan can also help you determine a company’s viability, its profitability (including when it will first turn a profit), and how much money you will need from investors. In turn, a business plan has functional value as well: Not only does outlining goals help keep you accountable on a timeline, it can also attract investors in and of itself and, therefore, act as an effective strategy for growth.

For more information, visit our comprehensive guide to writing a strategic plan or download free strategic plan templates . This page focuses on for-profit business plans, but you can read our article with nonprofit business plan templates .

Business Plan Steps

The specific information in your business plan will vary, depending on the needs and goals of your venture, but a typical plan includes the following ordered elements:

If your plan is particularly long or complicated, consider adding a table of contents or an appendix for reference. For an in-depth description of each step listed above, read “ How to Write a Business Plan Step by Step ” below.

Broadly speaking, your audience includes anyone with a vested interest in your organization. They can include potential and existing investors, as well as customers, internal team members, suppliers, and vendors.

Do I Need a Simple or Detailed Plan?

Your business’s stage and intended audience dictates the level of detail your plan needs. Corporations require a thorough business plan — up to 100 pages. Small businesses or startups should have a concise plan focusing on financials and strategy.

How to Choose the Right Plan for Your Business

In order to identify which type of business plan you need to create, ask: “What do we want the plan to do?” Identify function first, and form will follow.

Use the chart below as a guide for what type of business plan to create:

Is the Order of Your Business Plan Important?

There is no set order for a business plan, with the exception of the executive summary, which should always come first. Beyond that, simply ensure that you organize the plan in a way that makes sense and flows naturally.

The Difference Between Traditional and Lean Business Plans

A traditional business plan follows the standard structure — because these plans encourage detail, they tend to require more work upfront and can run dozens of pages. A Lean business plan is less common and focuses on summarizing critical points for each section. These plans take much less work and typically run one page in length.

In general, you should use a traditional model for a legacy company, a large company, or any business that does not adhere to Lean (or another Agile method ). Use Lean if you expect the company to pivot quickly or if you already employ a Lean strategy with other business operations. Additionally, a Lean business plan can suffice if the document is for internal use only. Stick to a traditional version for investors, as they may be more sensitive to sudden changes or a high degree of built-in flexibility in the plan.

How to Write a Business Plan Step by Step

Writing a strong business plan requires research and attention to detail for each section. Below, you’ll find a 10-step guide to researching and defining each element in the plan.

Step 1: Executive Summary

The executive summary will always be the first section of your business plan. The goal is to answer the following questions:

See our  roundup of executive summary examples and templates for samples. Read our executive summary guide to learn more about writing one.

Step 2: Description of Business

The goal of this section is to define the realm, scope, and intent of your venture. To do so, answer the following questions as clearly and concisely as possible:

Step 3: Market Analysis

In this section, provide evidence that you have surveyed and understand the current marketplace, and that your product or service satisfies a niche in the market. To do so, answer these questions:

Step 4: Competitive Analysis

In many cases, a business plan proposes not a brand-new (or even market-disrupting) venture, but a more competitive version — whether via features, pricing, integrations, etc. — than what is currently available. In this section, answer the following questions to show that your product or service stands to outpace competitors:

Step 5: Description of Organizational Management

In this section, write an overview of the team members and other key personnel who are integral to success. List roles and responsibilities, and if possible, note the hierarchy or team structure.

Step 6: Description of Products or Services

In this section, clearly define your product or service, as well as all the effort and resources that go into producing it. The strength of your product largely defines the success of your business, so it’s imperative that you take time to test and refine the product before launching into marketing, sales, or funding details.

Questions to answer in this section are as follows:

Step 7: Marketing Plan

In this section, define the marketing strategy for your product or service. This doesn’t need to be as fleshed out as a full marketing plan , but it should answer basic questions, such as the following:

Step 8: Sales Plan

Write an overview of the sales strategy, including the priorities of each cycle, steps to achieve these goals, and metrics for success. For the purposes of a business plan, this section does not need to be a comprehensive, in-depth sales plan , but can simply outline the high-level objectives and strategies of your sales efforts. 

Start by answering the following questions:

Step 9: Funding Details (or Request for Funding)

This section is one of the most critical parts of your business plan, particularly if you are sharing it with investors. You do not need to provide a full financial plan, but you should be able to answer the following questions:

Step 10: Financial Projections

Apart from the fundraising analysis, investors like to see thought-out financial projections for the future. As discussed earlier, depending on the scope and stage of your business, this could be anywhere from one to five years. 

While these projections won’t be exact — and will need to be somewhat flexible — you should be able to gauge the following:

Business Plan Template

Business Plan Template

Download Business Plan Template

Microsoft Excel | Smartsheet

This basic business plan template has space for all the traditional elements: an executive summary, product or service details, target audience, marketing and sales strategies, etc. In the finances sections, input your baseline numbers, and the template will automatically calculate projections for sales forecasting, financial statements, and more.

For templates tailored to more specific needs, visit this business plan template roundup or download a fill-in-the-blank business plan template to make things easy. 

If you are looking for a particular template by file type, visit our pages dedicated exclusively to Microsoft Excel , Microsoft Word , and Adobe PDF business plan templates.

How to Write a Simple Business Plan

A simple business plan is a streamlined, lightweight version of the large, traditional model. As opposed to a one-page business plan , which communicates high-level information for quick overviews (such as a stakeholder presentation), a simple business plan can exceed one page.

Below are the steps for creating a generic simple business plan, which are reflected in the template below .

Simple Business Plan Template

Simple Business Plan Template

Download Simple Business Plan Template

Microsoft Excel |  Microsoft Word | Adobe PDF  | Smartsheet

Use this simple business plan template to outline each aspect of your organization, including information about financing and opportunities to seek out further funding. This template is completely customizable to fit the needs of any business, whether it’s a startup or large company.

Read our article offering free simple business plan templates or free 30-60-90-day business plan templates to find more tailored options. You can also explore our collection of one page business templates . 

How to Write a Business Plan for a Lean Startup

A Lean startup business plan is a more Agile approach to a traditional version. The plan focuses more on activities, processes, and relationships (and maintains flexibility in all aspects), rather than on concrete deliverables and timelines.

While there is some overlap between a traditional and a Lean business plan, you can write a Lean plan by following the steps below:

Lean Business Plan Template for Startups

Lean Business Plan Templates for Startups

Download Lean Business Plan Template for Startups

Microsoft Word | Adobe PDF

Startup leaders can use this Lean business plan template to relay the most critical information from a traditional plan. You’ll find all the sections listed above, including spaces for industry and product overviews, cost structure and sources of revenue, and key metrics, and a timeline. The template is completely customizable, so you can edit it to suit the objectives of your Lean startups.

See our wide variety of  startup business plan templates for more options.

How to Write a Business Plan for a Loan

A business plan for a loan, often called a loan proposal , includes many of the same aspects of a traditional business plan, as well as additional financial documents, such as a credit history, a loan request, and a loan repayment plan.

In addition, you may be asked to include personal and business financial statements, a form of collateral, and equity investment information.

Download free financial templates to support your business plan.

Tips for Writing a Business Plan

Outside of including all the key details in your business plan, you have several options to elevate the document for the highest chance of winning funding and other resources. Follow these tips from experts:.

Outside of these more practical tips, the language you use is also important and may make or break your business plan.

Shaun Heng, VP of Operations at Coin Market Cap , gives the following advice on the writing, “Your business plan is your sales pitch to an investor. And as with any sales pitch, you need to strike the right tone and hit a few emotional chords. This is a little tricky in a business plan, because you also need to be formal and matter-of-fact. But you can still impress by weaving in descriptive language and saying things in a more elegant way.

“A great way to do this is by expanding your vocabulary, avoiding word repetition, and using business language. Instead of saying that something ‘will bring in as many customers as possible,’ try saying ‘will garner the largest possible market segment.’ Elevate your writing with precise descriptive words and you'll impress even the busiest investor.”

Additionally, Dean recommends that you “stay consistent and concise by keeping your tone and style steady throughout, and your language clear and precise. Include only what is 100 percent necessary.”

Resources for Writing a Business Plan

While a template provides a great outline of what to include in a business plan, a live document or more robust program can provide additional functionality, visibility, and real-time updates. The U.S. Small Business Association also curates resources for writing a business plan.

Additionally, you can use business plan software to house data, attach documentation, and share information with stakeholders. Popular options include LivePlan, Enloop, BizPlanner, PlanGuru, and iPlanner.

How a Business Plan Helps to Grow Your Business

A business plan — both the exercise of creating one and the document — can grow your business by helping you to refine your product, target audience, sales plan, identify opportunities, secure funding, and build new partnerships. 

Outside of these immediate returns, writing a business plan is a useful exercise in that it forces you to research the market, which prompts you to forge your unique value proposition and identify ways to beat the competition. Doing so will also help you build (and keep you accountable to) attainable financial and product milestones. And down the line, it will serve as a welcome guide as hurdles inevitably arise.

Streamline Your Business Planning Activities with Real-Time Work Management in Smartsheet

Empower your people to go above and beyond with a flexible platform designed to match the needs of your team — and adapt as those needs change. 

The Smartsheet platform makes it easy to plan, capture, manage, and report on work from anywhere, helping your team be more effective and get more done. Report on key metrics and get real-time visibility into work as it happens with roll-up reports, dashboards, and automated workflows built to keep your team connected and informed. 

When teams have clarity into the work getting done, there’s no telling how much more they can accomplish in the same amount of time.  Try Smartsheet for free, today.

Discover why over 90% of Fortune 100 companies trust Smartsheet to get work done.

Corporate Finance

Small Business

How to Start a Business

Business Startup Costs: It’s in the Details

cost for a business plan

There's more to a business than furnishings and office space. Especially in the early stages, startup costs require careful planning and meticulous accounting. Many new businesses neglect this process , relying instead on a flood of customers to keep the operation afloat, usually with abysmal results.

Key Takeaways

Startup costs are the expenses incurred during the process of creating a new business. All businesses are different, so they require different types of startup costs. Online businesses have different needs than brick-and-mortars ; coffee shops have different requirements than bookstores. However, a few expenses are common to most business types.

Understanding Common Business Startup Costs

The business plan.

Essential to the startup effort is creating a business plan —a detailed map of the new business. A business plan forces consideration of the different startup costs. Underestimating expenses falsely increases expected net profit, a situation that does not bode well for any small business owner.

Research Expenses

Careful research of the industry and consumer makeup must be conducted before starting a business. Some business owners choose to hire market research firms to aid them in the assessment process.

For business owners who choose to follow this route, the expense of hiring these experts must be included in the business plan.

Borrowing Costs

Starting up any kind of business requires an infusion of capital. There are two ways to acquire capital for a business: equity financing and debt financing. Usually, equity financing entails the issuance of stock, but this does not apply to most small businesses, which are proprietorships.

For small business owners, the most likely source of financing is debt in the form of a small business loan . Business owners can often get loans from banks, savings institutions, and the U.S.  Small Business Administration (SBA). Like any other loan, business loans are accompanied by interest payments. These payments must be planned for when starting a business, as the cost of default is very high.

Insurance, License, and Permit Fees

Many businesses are expected to submit to health inspections and authorizations to obtain certain business licenses and permits. Some businesses might require basic licenses while others need industry-specific permits.

Carrying insurance to cover your employees, customers, business assets, and yourself can help protect your personal assets from any liabilities  that may arise. 

Technological Expenses

Technological expenses include the cost of a website, information systems, and software, including accounting and point of sale (POS) software , for a business. Some small business owners choose to outsource these functions to other companies to save on payroll and benefits.

Equipment and Supplies

Every business requires some form of equipment and basic supplies. Before adding equipment expenses to the list of startup costs, a decision has to be made to lease or buy.

The state of your finances will play a major part in this decision. Even if you have enough money to buy equipment, unavoidable expenses may make leasing, with the intention to buy at a later date, a viable option. However, it is important to remember that, regardless of the cash position , a lease may not always be best, depending upon the type of equipment and terms of the lease.

Advertising and Promotion

A new company or startup business is unlikely to succeed without promoting itself. However, promoting a business entails much more than placing ads in a local newspaper.

It also includes marketing —everything a company does to attract clients to the business. Marketing has become such a science that any advantage is beneficial, so external dedicated marketing companies are most often hired.

Employee Expenses

Businesses planning to hire employees must plan for wages, salaries, and benefits, also known as the cost of labor .

Failure to compensate employees adequately can end in low morale, mutiny, and bad publicity, all of which can be disastrous to a company.

Additional Startup Cost Considerations

Have some extra money set aside for any overlooked or unexpected expenses. Most companies fail because they lack the cash to deal with unexpected problems during the business season.

It is important to note that the startup costs for a sole proprietorship differ from the startup costs for a partnership or corporation. Some additional costs a partnership might incur include the legal cost of drafting a partnership agreement and state registration fees.

Other costs that may apply more to a corporation include fees for filing articles of incorporation, bylaws, and terms of original stock certificates.

Launching a new business can be invigorating. However, getting caught up in the excitement and neglecting the details can lead to failure. Above anything else, observe and consult with others who have traveled this road before—you never know where you might learn the business advice that helps your particular business succeed.

U.S. Small Business Administration. " Fund Your Business ."

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Elon Musk's new Master Plan for Tesla should've introduced cheap EVs. Instead, we got a whole lot of nothing.

Tesla fans have had a rollercoaster few months, so they can be forgiven for having wanted CEO Elon Musk to take a break from Twitter posting to update them on a long-anticipated, cheap EV model.

Instead, they got nothing much during an investor jamboree in Texas this week.

The presentation led by Musk and several other executives at Tesla's gigafactory Wednesday was widely expected to put front-and-center an affordable version of its pricey EVs — showing the company meant business when it came to delivering affordable electric vehicles. 

The event, billed as the launch of part three in Tesla's Master Plan, instead turned into a four-hour slog that dragged on about vanity projects like the Cybertruck, heat pumps, autopilot crash numbers, and powertrain refinements. 

Sure, these details offer varying degrees of intrigue, but they do little to disguise the fact that cheap EVs – the holy grail in Musk's quest to make Tesla the leader in a global transition to clean-energy transportation – remain elusive. 

Indeed, promises of delivering an affordable vehicle now stretch back almost 17 years to when the billionaire first launched his Master Plan. He needs one now — and fast — as competitors are putting the pedal to the metal in their own quests for low-cost EVs.

A missing low-cost EV makes for a puzzling omission

Affordable EVs, which Tesla refers to as its "next-generation platform," can appease two key pressures Tesla faces: meeting consumer demand for a low-cost clean energy vehicle and expectations from Wall Street to ramp up production. 

On the consumer front, Musk has repeatedly stated his desire to offer cheaper Teslas — making EVs available that everyone can afford and that will help accelerate the clean energy transition. On the investor front, low-cost EVs help make Tesla a truly global phenomenon. 

"The desire for people to own a Tesla is extremely high. The limiting factor is their ability to pay for a Tesla," he said at the event. But the lack of any firm details on a cheap EV made for a puzzling omission from what was meant to be a showcase of Tesla's offerings.

That's particularly the case given an economic backdrop of high interest rates and inflation. Though EV sales grew 36% in 2022, according to figures from S&P , Tesla's high prices threaten to put a damper on consumer appetite. Tesla's cheapest car, the Model 3 sedan, remains a pricey $43,000.

Inevitably, a collective groan could be heard from investors after the event: Tesla's stock dropped 5% on Wednesday in after-hours trading. And it had fallen around 6% during regular trade in New York on Thursday.

Tesla may have cut prices on some of its top models by 20% across the US and Europe last month, but an altogether new model with an affordable entry price would help it see off competition from those traditional carmakers attempting to bring cheaper alternatives to market. 

Cheap EVs will decide who wins the EV race

Tom Zhu, Musk's right-hand man at Tesla, announced Tesla has now made 4 million cars, picking up the pace of development along the way: Compared with the 12 years it took to build the first million, the last million Teslas took seven months. Continued scale will slash costs.

But hitting a production goal of 20 million vehicles a year by 2030 will almost certainly need a new, low-cost EV model in the mix. 

Tesla CFO Zach Kirkhorn said Tesla will boost efficiency through cost cutting to generate the $150 billion to $175 billion of investment needed to meet this production target. Tesla's confirmation of a new gigafactory in Mexico on Wednesday all but certainly lines up the facility for just that. 

That said, the clock is ticking for Tesla , with a continued absence of a low-price car only hurting it as competition grows. The EV maker, which once hit a market capitalization of over $1 trillion, is priced like a high-flying tech company because of weighty expectations to deliver industry-shaking accomplishments. (Its market cap has fallen to around $600 billion as its stock fell more than 35% over the past year.)

Establishing the ubiquity of iPhones is what it's after, and a cheap car is needed to do that.

Everything else should probably take a backseat for Tesla until then. 

cost for a business plan

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Supreme Court reviews student loan debt handout plan: How it may impact you

Cbo says biden's student loan debt handout would cost about $400b over 3 years.

Former Trump economic adviser Stephen Moore and Macro Trends Advisors founding partner Mitch Roschelle weigh in on the Supreme Court hearing Biden's student loan case on "The Evening Edit."

Moore: Biden's student loan handout was never approved by Congress

Former Trump economic adviser Stephen Moore and Macro Trends Advisors founding partner Mitch Roschelle weigh in on the Supreme Court hearing Biden's student loan case on "The Evening Edit."

The Supreme Court is set to hear arguments Tuesday in a pair of cases that may determine the fate of President Joe Biden’s student loan debt handout plan and have financial implications for millions of people with student loan debt and American taxpayers.

Justices will hear a pair of challenges to the student loan debt handout, both of which involve questions about whether the Department of Education was authorized by Congress to advance the rule implementing Biden’s plan and followed the proper regulatory procedures. Aside from the statutory and regulatory aspects of the cases, Biden v. Nebraska considers whether six states have the constitutional standing to challenge the rule; Department of Education v. Brown looks at whether two student loan borrowers have standing to bring the challenge.

Biden’s student loan handout plan would cancel $10,000 in federal student loans for individuals making less than $125,000 per year or households earning less than $250,000 annually as of 2020 or 2021. Recipients of Pell Grants – who typically demonstrate greater financial need – would receive an additional $10,000 in debt cancellation. Loans would have to have been disbursed prior to July 1, 2022, to be eligible for the plan.


Supreme Court building

The Supreme Court will hear arguments in two cases related to President Joe Biden's student loan debt handout on Tuesday, Feb. 28. (AP Photo / Alex Brandon / File / AP Newsroom)

About 43 million student loan borrowers are eligible under the plan, nearly half of whom would have the entirety of their debt canceled. The Biden administration has said that 26 million have applied for relief to date and 16 million applicants have been approved pending the resolution of the court cases. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has said it would cost taxpayers about $400 billion over the next three years if fully implemented.

Elaine Parker, president of the Job Creators Network, which filed suit on behalf of the two borrowers in Department of Education v. Brown, told FOX Business’ Neil Cavuto that if the Supreme Court sides with Biden, it will give "not only this president but every future president a blank check to create programs this size without any input from Congress or the American people." She added that it will "signal to colleges that they can continue increasing tuition on these students higher than the rate of inflation."


Biden with student loan payment

President Biden's student loan debt handout plan would cost an estimated $400 billion over the next three years, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. (Reuters / File / Reuters Photos)

Biden has said he has the authority to wipe away student loan debt under a law that was initially enacted after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. Known as the Higher Education Relief Opportunities for Students (HEROES) Act, the law was initially intended to benefit service members deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq by waiving their student loan debt or providing other relief. The HEROES Act was enacted in January 2002, was extended and revised in 2003 and 2005, then was made permanent in 2007.

Both the Trump and Biden administrations cited the legal authorities granted by the HEROES Act in pausing student loan repayments due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic , although the Trump administration didn’t pursue a debt cancellation plan under its authority like the Biden administration has.


Student protest student loans

Activists attend a rally outside the White House to call on President Joe Biden to cancel student debt on July 27, 2022, in Washington, D.C. (Anna Moneymaker / Getty Images / Getty Images)

Student loan repayments remain paused until either 60 days after the Supreme Court ruling is released or 60 days after June 30 – whichever occurs first. It’s possible that Biden could issue a further extension of the repayment pause depending on the outcome of the case.

The nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget has estimated that each month the repayment pause remains in effect costs the federal government $5 billion in lost revenue.


Supreme Court justices are expected to issue rulings in the student loan debt handout cases later this year, with decisions expected before the current term ends in late June or early July.

Fox News’ Shannon Bream and Bill Mears contributed to this article.

cost for a business plan


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Living With Mom and Dad While Figuring Out a Financial Exit Plan

Some young adults who returned home to save money and figure out their careers are calculating what it will take for them to leave again.

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Nicole Solero is standing next to her parents on a balcony with white panels. She is holding her dog, Billy.

By Isabella Simonetti

Nicole Solero moved out of her parents’ home in Orlando, Fla., after she graduated from a community college in 2019. She worked as a freelance graphic designer in a small town in South Florida, but she felt lonely and depressed working remotely while her roommate frequently traveled for work. Ms. Solero decided to move back in with her parents.

The financial decision made sense to Ms. Solero, who said adult children living at home with their parents wasn’t really a source of stigma in her Hispanic culture. “We stay home until we are stable enough to move out,” she said, “and usually it’s until you’re married or until you have a career where you can provide for yourself completely.”

Ms. Solero, 24, now lives with her parents and her brother while she works as an intern at a public relations agency. She also does some freelance work. She helps her parents by occasionally paying for household expenses like food or laundry detergent, but she is able to save around $600 a month by living rent-free. She plans on moving out in the next two years, she said, after she secures a job.

Young adults are often encouraged to leave the nest as a rite of passage to establish financial independence and build a life and career away from their parents. But for some members of Generation Z and younger millennials, factors like the high cost of living, student debt, family obligations or cultural traditions keep them living at home for longer than expected. The pandemic and its resulting economic downturn also forced many young adults to move back in with their parents.

According to a Pew Research Center analysis using Census Bureau data, half of Americans ages 18 to 29 were living with their parents in July. And although more than one-third of Americans in a survey that the center conducted in October 2021 said it was bad for society for young adults to live with their parents, many young people said it was necessary to get closer to achieving their personal and financial goals.

Tim Morris, 23, graduated from college in 2021 with about $53,000 in student debt. He decided to move back in with his parents in Akron, Ohio, and has managed to reduce that debt to around $24,000. Mr. Morris describes his living situation like living with roommates who “pay for everything.” Besides his bills, he needs to worry only about paying for gas.

“It is not what I want, but I am putting up with it because it is helping me put a big dent in my loans,” Mr. Morris said.

Mr. Morris, an associate chemist at a silicone manufacturing company, makes about $2,800 a month after taxes and puts $850 of that toward his student loan payments. He also contributes to a Roth individual retirement account, a 401(k) plan and a brokerage account, and he is working to save around $14,000 for a year of rent for a future apartment. Mr. Morris also has an emergency fund of over $2,000.

One of the main challenges that come with living at home for Mr. Morris is the toll it has taken on his dating and social life. Both of his parents are retired, and he has to ask for permission to have friends over. Mr. Morris said he had been on few dates since moving back home, partly because he did not have his own space.

“It’s not that enticing to just date someone who still lives with their parents,” he said.

Mr. Morris still owes about $8,000 in private student loans and hopes to move out when he pays them off. He is aiming to reach this goal by the end of September.

When young people have student loans, hope to start a business or want to save up for things like a house or a wedding, living at home can be a good financial decision, said Jovan Johnson, a co-owner of Piece of Wealth Planning, a financial advisory firm. In terms of when to move out, Mr. Johnson said, it is important to make sure you have enough income to afford rent and your lifestyle as well as an emergency fund that includes three to six months of rent and basic expenses. He also stressed the importance of being emotionally prepared for that next step.

“Make sure you’re ready for that independence and what comes with it,” he said. “It is a little different when you’re on your own without that support.”

Living at home is necessary for Kiah Ranstead because she takes care of her parents, who are both disabled. Ms. Ranstead, 30, lives in Kent, Ill ., and helps out by doing household chores, managing her mother’s medication and taking her to doctors’ appointments.

Ms. Ranstead is unemployed while waiting to have carpal tunnel surgery, though she hopes to work in publishing one day. She owes $60,000 in student debt, which she hopes to pay off once she has a job. Her parents use their Social Security payments to pay for household expenses.

Ms. Ranstead said most of her peers had moved out of their parents’ homes. “I feel like I do get judged by them for living at home because I’m older and I’m not married and I don’t have kids,” she said. If she moved out, she said, she would have to hire someone to care for her parents.

Madison Simms, 23, moved back home to Pittsburgh after she became unhappy while working at her first job out of college at a mortgage company. Ms. Simms, who lives in a house with her mother and her sister, now has a job in investment management for Bank of New York Mellon.

When she was living in Silver Spring, Md., for her former job, she spent about $2,000 a month on rent, she said. Now, living at home, Ms. Simms has been able to replenish her savings, she said, and puts away around $800 a month in addition to about $625 a month in her 401(k) account.

“What really keeps me home is the amount of money I can save a month,” Ms. Simms said. She feels financially stable enough to start looking for her own place again, she said, but is looking to stay not too far from home.

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Rocket has a plan to drastically cut costs. Does it go far enough?

SEC filings show workforce reduction of 7,500 employees in 2022

Executives at Rocket Companies are engaged in a very tricky balancing act: they must drastically reduce expenses to return the company to profitability. And at the same time they must continue to invest in their business to avoid losing further ground in a mortgage market that doesn’t play to Rocket’s natural strengths.

The lender has made several big reductions in force in recent months. The question is whether it goes far enough.

“If we look at the fourth quarter of 2022 compared to that quarter of 2021 on an annualized basis, we have reduced our expense base by almost $3 billion, or more than 40% of total costs,” Brian Brown, Rocket’s CFO, told analysts on the Tuesday night fourth quarter earnings call.

“We committed to a further reduction in total expenses from the third quarter to the fourth quarter of $50 million to $100 million. And we far exceeded that estimate, reducing expenses by $202 million during the quarter,” Brown added.

In all, Rocket reduced its expenses from $6.7 billion in 2021 to $5 billion in 2022, when origination volume and revenues were in free fall.

So far, the cost-cutting initiatives have not been enough to push the company back to profitability. Rocket lost $137 million in 2022 compared to the $4.5 billion profit realized in 2021.

But how far did the lender go in right-sizing its structure in 2022? What do analysts expect for the coming quarters as the company seeks to break even? 

Here are some takeaways from the company’s 2022 annual 10K report , released on Wednesday.

Rocket’s shrinking workforce 

Rocket ended 2021 with approximately 26,000 employees based in the United States and Canada. (In 2018, the company invested in the Canadian mortgage tech firm Lendesk , and in 2020, it acquired the mortgage business Edison Financial , which it renamed Rocket Mortgage Canada in 2022.) 

News of Rocket Companies’ headcount reductions first became public in April 2022, when the lender offered buyouts to 8% of its staff at Rocket Mortgage and Amrock Title . At that time, the company did not specify whether it would institute layoffs should the 2,000 or so workers selected for buyouts not agree to the packages. 

Ultimately, it offered additional buyouts when market conditions deteriorated in August,  without disclosing further details on how many buyouts were taken. Employees who left the company received a package with several months of salary, a portion of their banked time off, benefits coverage through 2022 and career transition services. 

Rocket ended 2022 with 18,500 employees, a 7,500 or 28.8% reduction compared to 2021, SEC filings show. It’s unclear the share of voluntary buyouts, potential layoffs and regular attrition on the headcount reduction. Rocket declined to specify a breakdown.

In a statement issued to HousingWire, a spokesperson said that 2022 was challenging for the housing and mortgage industry.

“Having experienced many market cycles in our 37-year history, we recognized this tough market would limit career growth options in certain areas of the business,” Rocket spokesperson John Perich said. “With a focus on our responsibility to provide pathways to career success, we offered select team members the option to participate in a voluntary career transition program. Those who chose this option received significant cash incentives, extended healthcare and more. Additionally, the company selectively backfilled critical positions as team members exited the company to better align headcount with market demand.”

Top wholesale lender United Wholesale Mortgage (UWM), which overtook Rocket to become the largest originator in America in the third quarter, ended 2022 with 6,000 employees, down from 8,000 employees in 2021. 

“In response to significant increases in interest rates, our loan origination volume in 2022 decreased by 44% and our number of team members decreased by 25% as compared to the prior year end. However, during 2021, our loan origination volume increased by 24% while our number of team members increased by 7%, as compared to the prior year-end,” UWM wrote in its 10k report. 

Meanwhile, according to SEC filings, top correspondent lender Pennymac finished 2022 with 4,000 domestic employees, 42% down from 6,900 in 2021. 

Billions cut out in nine months 

“It’s easy to sit on these calls and talk about expense reductions. The real work is the hundreds and hundreds of leaders inside the organization that have to go through that process. When Brian [Brown, Rocket’s CFO] talks about taking billions and billions of expenses out, we’ve accomplished that in nine months,” Jay Farner , Rocket’s CEO, who departs the company in June , told analysts. 

Cutting the workforce, however, typically results in more short-term costs. The SEC filings show Rocket incurred $81 million in costs associated with a career transition program last year, which included compensation packages, healthcare coverage, career transition services, and accelerated vesting of specific equity awards.

Last year, the company’s primary cost reduction was related to its workforce. Salaries, commissions, and benefits declined $600 million (-16.7%). Meanwhile, the company reported a $277 million reduction (-23.4%) in general and administrative expenses and $303.9 million (-24.3%) in market and advertising costs.

In the U.S. and Canada, Rocket increased the number of total corporate offices to 16 in 2022, up from 14 in 2021. The company also opened two additional client support locations in 2022 for a total of 11, but reduced the number of call centers to four, down from five in 2021. 

Reduced borrowing capacity

When refinancing business was plentiful in 2021, Rocket originated $351 billion in loans overall. But without refi winds at the sails and a smaller overall market, production fell to $133 billion in 2022. That’s why the lender is trimming its borrowing capacity. 

As of December 31, 2021, Rocket had 13 funding loan facilities providing an aggregate maximum principal amount of $24.5 billion in loan origination availability, SEC filings show. As of December 31, 2022, the company’s funding facilities were cut to 10, with a maximum capacity of $17.5 billion. 

Rocket is borrowing under these financing facilities at a variable rate, according to the 10K document. This exposes the lender.

As interest rates increase, the company’s debt service obligations on certain variable-rate indebtedness will also increase. However, “in the future, we may enter into interest rate swaps, which involve the exchange of floating for fixed-rate interest payments, to reduce interest rate volatility,” SEC filings state.

What’s next for Rocket? 

According to Rocket executives, the company expects its financial position to improve in 2023. But slowly. Adjusted revenue is expected to come between $700 million and $850 million in the first quarter of 2023. It came in at $683 million in the fourth quarter of 2022, a massive decline from the $2.4 billion recorded during the same time in 2021.

Brown told analysts that operational expenditure is expected to be “slightly higher” from January to March than the previous quarter due to increased production and seasonal factors. HousingWire reported that the company had imposed two layoff rounds this year. 

“We expect Q1 to be relatively consistent with Q4, with a slight increase on an absolute basis primarily as a result of seasonal items such as payroll taxes, 401k resetting, and higher variable expenses associated with increased production in revenue,” Brown told analysts.

“It is worth noting that the expense total for Q1 2023 is expected to be roughly 30% less than the Q1 2022 figure. Looking ahead, we will continue to be diligent in managing expenses as we continue to monitor the macro environment with an eye towards profitability.”

Analysts at Jefferies wrote in a report that they see the company emerging stronger from this challenging cycle, but there will be pressure on most originators in the near term. 

“Rocket continues to make progress on rotating towards purchase [loans] and expanding new business lines/partnerships, which should diversify the business over time,” the analysts wrote. “We see near-term pressures on earnings per share but consider Rocket’s strategy of expense reductions ultimately returning the company to profitability after the originations market troughs.” 

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Tesla vows to halve EV production costs, Musk keeps affordable car plan under wraps

SAN FRANCISCO, March 1 (Reuters) - Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) will cut assembly costs by half in future generations of cars, engineers told investors on Wednesday, but Chief Executive Elon Musk did not unveil when it will debut a much-awaited affordable electric vehicle.

Shares fell more than 5% in after hours trade following the company's investor day from its Texas headquarters.

More than a dozen Tesla executives led by Musk discussed everything from a white-paper plan for the globe to embrace sustainable energy to the company's innovation in managing its operations from manufacturing to service.

The presentation featured an array of senior engineers, including the new global production chief, Tom Zhu, a nod to Tesla's attempt to show the depth of its executive bench beyond Musk, the face of the company.

But there were no details about when next generation cars would be launched and what models would be offered.

Musk had been expected to lay out a plan to make a more-affordable electric vehicle (EV) that would broaden his brand's appeal and fend off competition.

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Executives said Tesla's next generation platform would include more than one vehicle built in standardized factories, but Musk brushed off questions about models in mind.

Tesla's chief financial officer, Zach Kirkhorn, and others underscored their dedication to cutting production costs.

Kirkhorn estimated Tesla must invest six times more than it has to date to hit its long-term target of increasing output to 20 million vehicles annually by 2030, a 10-fold increase from current capacity. The bill could be $175 billion, he said.

The next investment step will be a new Tesla factory in northern Mexico , Musk said, announcing the first plant outside of the United States, Germany and China.

Musk did not comment on plans to revamp the Model Y sedan next year, called Project Juniper that Reuters flagged in a report on Wednesday , or a revamped version of its Model 3 sedan - a project codenamed Highland which Reuters has reported will go into production in September.

Design chief Franz von Holzhausen said the Cybertruck pickup is coming this year.


Capturing the mass market is critical to Tesla's annual production goal, which is more than the combined production of the two largest volume vehicle makers - Germany's Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE) and Japan's Toyota (7203.T) .

A general view of the Tesla gigafactory in Austin

[1/3]   A general view of the Tesla gigafactory in Austin, Texas, U.S., February 28, 2023. REUTERS/Go Nakamura/File Photo

It would also represent a sales volume for Tesla alone of about a quarter of last year's total global car sales.

Musk said the key to driving Tesla's sales volume would be bringing prices down for consumers, adding that Tesla's discounts offered this year had stoked demand.

"The desire for people to own a Tesla is extremely high. The limiting factor is their ability to pay for a Tesla," Musk said.

Tesla is the most valuable automaker, but its stock has swung wildly. Shares are down about half from their November 2021 peak, but have rebounded more than 60% this year.

Musk said Tesla could need as few as 10 models, which at target production would amount 2 million sales per year for each model line. By comparison, Toyota sells just over 1 million Corollas a year globally.

Tesla already has a lead over its rivals in manufacturing EVs at a profit. Chief Engineer Lars Moravy said the company expects to build its next-generation vehicles for half the cost of the current Model 3 or Model Y.

Moravy described a production process for future EVs he called an "unboxed" model of snapping together sub-assemblies to reduce complexity and time in production.

Tesla executive Peter Bannon gave an example of how the company uses data to cut costs. Customer data showed Tesla owners did not use the sun roof, he said, "so we removed it."

High-profile Tesla investor Ross Gerber tweeted that the presentation amounted to a "Huge tease" on the next-generation vehicle. "It's coming. They laid it all out. 50% less cost to build. Would get you a $25-$30k EV!"

Tesla has outperformed the industry in recent years, increasing deliveries rapidly despite the pandemic and supply-chain disruptions.

But Tesla cut prices in recent months to boost sales, which were pressured by a weak economy and growing threats from rivals in the United States and China.

Reuters Graphics Reuters Graphics

Tesla will also have to improve its battery technology, which Musk has called the "fundamental limiting factor" for the transition to sustainable energy and more affordable cars.

Tesla has been struggling to scale up the production of advanced batteries, called 4680s. Executives on Wednesday said it was likely they could hit volume production this year, but added they were still testing two different production processes.

The stock fell over 60% last year

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


Private equity firms that have for years capitalized on the regulatory woes of banks by becoming lenders to risky leveraged buyouts are doing less business just as higher interest rates have made that practice more lucrative.

cost for a business plan

Eli Lilly is slashing insulin prices. A Petersburg facility is a big reason why.

Eric kolenich.

Civica’s production facility in Petersburg is shown on Nov. 10.

Health Brigade community health worker Emely Baez Salazar, right, practices taking a blood sugar reading on Sasha Poggi, medication coordinator at Health Brigade, outside her office in Richmond. Poggi has type 1 diabetes and gives herself between four and five insulin injections on average per day.

Drug manufacturing giant Eli Lilly & Co. announced Wednesday it will slash the cost of its insulin and cap a patient's cost at $35 a month.

A production facility recently built in Petersburg played a role in Lilly's move, which should help diabetics across the country save money on their medication. 

Nonprofit drug maker Civica Inc. built a facility in Petersburg that will do something no drug maker is doing. It will assemble what are essentially generic forms of the three most popular types of insulin, and it will sell them at a fraction of the list price. 

In February 2022 Chesterfield mother Shannon Davis and her son, Joshua, appeared with President Joe Biden and Rep. Abigail Spanberger, R-7th, in Culpeper to urge lower prescription drug prices

The company's aim isn't to dominate the insulin market, said its CEO, Ned McCoy. Its aim is to fix the market, and its plan appears to be working. 

People are also reading…

When it announced its plans to sell cheaper insulin, "it was with the intent of making clear that there is a more affordable way to deliver these essential medicines to people with diabetes," said Debbi Ford, a spokesperson for Civica. "With Lilly's announcement, we are seeing them take a positive and commendable step in the right direction." 

Americans pay vastly higher drug costs than residents of other wealthy nations, and roughly 8 million Americans rely on insulin to survive. 

The cost of insulin has grown so high that almost a quarter of Type 1 diabetics ration their supply, according to a study. 

Humalog, one of Lilly's best-selling insulin products, has a list price of $530 for a five-pack of injection pens and $274 for a vial. What a consumer actually pays often depends on his or her insurance. 

Sasha Poggi, medication coordinator at Health Brigade, gives herself an insulin injection after checking her blood sugar outside her office in Richmond.

Sasha Poggi, a resident of Henrico County, has Type 1 diabetes and spends roughly $70 a month for two types of insulin, Humalog and Toujeo. Poggi works for Health Brigade, a Fan-neighborhood clinic, where she helps low-income diabetic patients obtain insulin for free or at a reduced cost. 

Lilly said it will reduce the cost of its most common insulins by 70% and lower the price of its unbranded insulin from $82 a vial to $25. 

In an effort to take back control of the drug market, a group of hospitals and philanthropic organizations formed Civica in 2018. Almost one year ago exactly, Civica announced it would produce insulin for a recommended cost of no more than $30 a vial and no more than $55 for a box of five pre-filled pens. 

VCU aspires to make Richmond a hub for health innovation

Its Petersburg facility will begin making the insulin products later this year, and Civica plans to begin selling them in early 2024. 

Civica's products are known as "biosimilar" versions of popular insulin brands. Civica essentially will make generic forms of Lantus, Humalog and Novolog, the three most popular insulin brands. Patients using those brands can switch to Civica's insulin, McCoy said. 

The nonprofit chose the Richmond region for its facility because of its overlapping vision with Virginia Commonwealth University's Medicines for All, which aims to reduce the price of essential medicines, Phlow Corp., which is building a national stockpile of drugs, and AMPAC Fine Chemicals, which provides the building blocks for medicines. 

Health Brigade community health worker Emely Baez Salazar practices taking a blood sugar reading on Sasha Poggi, medication coordinator at Health Brigade, outside her office in Richmond. Baez Salazar is learning how to do blood sugar tests in the community as she teaches about diabetes and hypertension.

"Civica has demonstrated that you don't need to price gouge sick Americans to have a viable business model," said Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va. Warner's daughter has Type 1 diabetes, and he has supported the Richmond-area coalition for drug manufacturing, which won more than $50 million in federal support. 

Civica isn't the only group competing with established insulin manufacturers. Walmart has begun selling insulin brand Novolog under its own label, called ReliOn, for about $75 a vial. 

The Mark Cuban Cost Plus Drug Co. has said it will manufacture cheaper insulin, and the state of California passed a bill creating the authority to produce its own insulin. 

"Eli Lilly definitely sees the writing on the wall," Larry Levitt, executive vice president for health policy at KFF, told NBC News. KFF was formerly known as the Kaiser Family Foundation. 

A spokesperson for Eli Lilly did not comment on how Civica's entry into the insulin market affected its decision making. 

Inside greater Richmond's big plan for pharmaceutical manufacturing

Pressure from the government and diabetes advocacy organizations likely played a role, too. 

The federal government capped the out-of-pocket cost of insulin for Medicare patients at $35 a month, and President Joe Biden has urged manufacturers to reduce their costs for the rest of the population.  

Warner said Eli Lilly's action is the result of the sustained pressure politicians have put on the issue for years. 

Eli Lilly's decision to cut prices won't have any effect on Civica's plan to produce insulin in Petersburg, Ford said.

Plenty of diabetic patients use other brands of insulin and still need relief. The country has a long way to go to ensure that everyone has affordable access to insulin, said Aaron Turner-Phifer, director of policy at JDRF, previously known as the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. 

"Civica will certainly play a role in the ultimate solution to have affordable insulin," Turner-Phifer said. 

📷 The Times-Dispatch's 'Photo of the Day'

Jan. 1, 2023.

Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (24) carries the ball as Washington Commanders cornerback Danny Johnson (36) tries to stop him during the first half of a NFL football game between the Cleveland Browns and the Washington Commanders on Sunday, January 1, 2023 in Landover, MD.

Jan. 2, 2023

Sharon MacKenzie of Mechanicsville walked with her friend Cindy Nunnally and her golden retriever, Sunny, during a GardenFest for Fidos at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden on Jan. 2.

Jan. 3, 2023

People remember eight-year-old P'Aris Moore during a vigil in Hopewell Tues., Jan. 3, 2023. Moore was shot and killed while playing in her neighborhood.

Jan. 4, 2023

UR's Jason Nelson presses down court as George Washington's Brendan Adams, left, and Hunter Dean defend in the Robins Center Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2023.

Jan. 5, 2023

Manchester's Olivia Wright reaches in on James River's Alisha Whirley at James River Thursday, Jan. 5, 2023.

Jan. 6, 2023

Daron Pearson plays basketball at Smith Peters Park in the Carver neighborhood on Friday, January 6, 2023 in Richmond, Va.

Jan. 7, 2023

UR's Tyler Burton takes a shot as Duquesne's Joe Reece defends Saturday, Jan. 7, 2023.

Jan. 8, 2023

Park ranger Bert Dunkerly leads a walking tour of Revolutionary Richmond on the grounds of the Chimborazo Medical Museum in Richmond on Jan. 8. The tour was part of a multiday annual event interpreting Richmond’s Revolutionary history, including the capture of the city by British General Benedict Arnold on Jan. 5, 1781. 

Jan. 10, 2023

Bon Secours Richmond Community Hospital COO Joey Trapani and Richmond City Councilwoman Cynthia Newbille react after cutting the ribbon to commemorate the opening of the East End Medical Office Building on Tuesday. Bon Secours Richmond Market President Mike Lutes (left) and Del. Delores McQuinn, D-Richmond, were also part of the festivities.

Jan. 11, 2023

Pages are introduced at the Senate chamber during the first day of Virginia General Assembly at Virginia State Capitol in Richmond, Va., on Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2023.

Jan. 12, 2023

Sen. Scott Surovell, D-Fairfax, worked at his desk at the Virginia State Capitol on Thursday. Above him is a portrait of former Lt. Gov. Don Beyer, now a congressman representing the 8th District in Northern Virginia.

Jan. 13, 2023

Elizabeth Leggett is photographed with her pup Pallas, 10, in her neighborhood in Richmond's business district on January 13, 2023. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Jan. 14, 2023

Aubrey Nguyen, age 5, and Andrew Nguyen, age 8, eye the dragon as it comes by during the Tet celebration at Vien Giac Buddhist Temple Saturday, Jan. 14, 2023. Jow Ga Kung Fu, of Virginia Beach, performed the Dragon Dance.

Jan. 15, 2023

The St. James's West Gallery Choir sings during "Evensong, A Celebration of the Life and Work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr." at St. James Episcopal Church Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023.

Jan. 16, 2023

James "States" Manship of Thornburg came to the gun rights rally at the Bell Tower in Capitol Square on Lobby Day, Monday, Jan. 16, 2023, dressed as President George Washington.

Jan. 17, 2023

Del. Emily Brewer, R-Suffolk, confers with Del. Sam Rasoul, D-Roanoke, at the state Capitol on Jan. 17. Brewer sponsored the bill on state purchasing, House Bill 2385.

Jan. 18, 2023

Aaliyah Rouse, 9, and Jennifer Rouse stand by as Aaron Rouse is sworn in in the Senate by Clerk of the Senate Susan Clarke Schaar during a general assembly session at the Virginia State Capitol in Richmond, Va., on Wednesday, January 18, 2023. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Jan. 19, 2023

Gov. Glenn Youngkin talks to the media at George W. Carver Elementary School on Jan. 19. 

Jan. 20, 2023

VCU's fans cheer for the team against Richmond during the second half of the NCAA men's basketball game at University of Richmond, Richmond, Va., on Friday, January 20, 2023.

Jan. 21, 2023

Jacqueline Dziuba, bottom left, and Steven Godwin, who live in Greenville, N.C., and other visitors check out the exhibits at the Poe Museum in Richmond in January as the museum celebrates Edgar Allan Poe’s 214th birthday and its own 100-year anniversary.

Jan. 22, 2023

Paul McLean (left), founder of the Virginia Minority Cannabis Coalition, listens alongside Mark Cannady during the “Is Social Equity in Off the Table in 2023?” portion of the program on Sunday on the second full day of the Virginia Cannabis Conference presented by Virginia NORML at Delta Hotels Richmond Downtown. Lobby Day takes place Monday.

Jan. 23, 2023

The flags at the Executive Mansion are at half-staff to honor those killed and injured in Monterey Park, California last weekend. Photo was taken on Monday, Jan. 23, 2023.

Jan. 24, 2023

Sen. Steve Newman, R-Lynchburg, listens to debate during a Senate floor session in the state Capitol on a bill to make Eastern Daylight Time year-round.

Jan. 25, 2023

Gov. Glenn Youngkin listens to George Daniel as he tries some Brunswick stew on Brunswick Stew Day at the Capitol Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2023. Next to Daniel are (L-R) Dylan Pair, stewmaster Kevin Pair and Austin Pair. The yearly event returned to the Capitol for the first time since the pandemic.

Jan. 26, 2023

Meghan Vandette is photographed with her dogs, Pepper, a deaf mini Australian shepherd, and Finn on Thursday, January 26, 2023 at Ruff Canine Club in Richmond, Virginia.

Jan. 27, 2023

Three-year-old London Oshinkoya (from left) and 3-year-old twins Messiah and Malkia Finley go through the toys brought by Crystal Holbrook-Gazoni near the Gilpin Resource Center in Richmond on Friday. 

Jan. 28, 2023

Dance instructor Paul Dandridge (foreground) works with youngsters as he teaches a theater dance during the “Genworth Lights Up! Youth Series: On the Road” at the Center for the Arts at Henrico High School on Saturday. The series offers free workshops and performances throughout the year for youth of all ages.

Jan. 29, 2023

Ronnie Jenkins II of Chesterfield County sits inside a Barefoot Spas hot tub with his 11-year-old son, Connor, and his wife, Amber, during the RVA Home Show at The Meadow Event Park in Caroline County.

Jan. 30, 2023

Frank Saucier listens as elected officials give remarks during a vigil for Tyre Nichols on Monday at Abner Clay Park in Richmond. Nichols died from the injuries he sustained after being beaten by police officers in Memphis.

Jan. 31, 2023

Mayor Levar Stoney gets ready to deliver his State of the City on Tuesday, January 31, 2023 at the Richmond Main Street Station in Richmond, Virginia.

Feb. 1, 2023

Gov. Glenn Youngkin attends the Virginia March for Life in Richmond, VA on February 1, 2023. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 2, 2023

Petersburg High School's basketball standout Chris Fields Jr. on Thursday, February 2, 2023 at the Petersburg High School in Petersburg, Virginia.

Feb. 3, 2023

Shawnrell Blackwell, left, a Southside Community Development & Housing Corporation homeowner and board member, watches as Dianna Bowser, president and CEO of SCDHC, shares a moment with Suzanne Youngkin during a ceremony at Virginia Housing in Richmond on Friday after Gov. Glenn Youngkin and the first lady presented the first Spirit of Virginia Award of 2023 to the affordable housing nonprofit.

Feb. 4, 2023

Members of the Break it Down RVA Line Dancing group perform during a Black History Month Celebration at Virginia State University on Feb. 4.

Feb. 5, 2023

Wide receiver Terry McLaurin (17) of the Washington Commanders, right, look on before the flag football event at the NFL Pro Bowl on Sunday in Las Vegas. With him are, from left, NFC wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown (14) of the Detroit Lions, NFC wide receiver CeeDee Lamb (88) of the Dallas Cowboys and NFC wide receiver Justin Jefferson (18) of the Minnesota Vikings.

Feb. 6, 2023

(From left) U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine, U.S. Rep. Rob Wittman, and Sethuraman Panchanathan, Ph.D., director of the National Science Foundation, arrive for a tour of VCU's Nanomaterials Core Characterization Facility with lab director and physics professor Massimo Bertino, Ph.D. (right) on Monday, Feb. 6. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 7, 2023

Sen. Dick Saslaw, D-Fairfax, is seen 4 1/2 hours into Tuesday's crossover session at the state Capitol.

Feb. 8, 2023

Chef Patrick Phelan works with his staff on Wednesday, February 8, 2023 at Lost Letter in Richmond, Virginia.

Feb. 9, 2023

Onlookers stand near a shattered window on East Broad Street following a shooting on Thursday. One person was killed and another wounded.

Feb. 10, 2023

Colonial Williamsburg moves a 260-year-old building, originally called the Bray School, on a truck to a new location a mile away, where it will be put on public display, in Williamsburg, Va., on Friday, Feb. 10, 2023. The Bray School is believed to be the oldest building in the US dedicated to the education of Black children.

Feb 11, 2023

Randolph-Macon celebrate after beating Roanoke College during a NCAA Division III Basketball game on Saturday, February 11, 2023 at Randolph Macon Crenshaw Gym in Ashland, Virginia. With today's win, the Yellow Jackets hold the longest home winning steak in NCAA Division III history.

Feb. 12, 2023

The Science Museum of Virginia hosted a competition for student engineers during a commemoration of Celebrate Engineering Ingenuity Day. A packed crowd watches Sunday as a team of “Bridge Breakers” from the American Society of Civil Engineers puts students’ inventions to the test.

Feb. 13, 2023

A crew from Walter D. Witt Roofing installs a new roof for Melvin Washington, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran, as part of the Owens Corning National Roof Deployment Project in Richmond, VA on February 13, 2023. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 14, 2023

Richmond City Council member Cynthia Newbille pulls the winning raffle ticket as Marc Edwards, from InnovAge Virginia PACE, holds the basket during the 9th annual "For the Love of Our Seniors" event at Main Street Station in Richmond, VA on February 14, 2023. The event is a resource fair for senior residents and caregivers in Church Hill. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 15, 2023

A crew from the Richmond-based company Cut Cut installs the new art installation "McLean" by Navine G. Dossos on the façade of the Institute for Contemporary Art in Richmond, VA on February 15, 2023. The installation is part of the exhibit "So it appears" opening February 24th. The vinyl pieces being used are adapted from a series of paintings. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 16, 2023

Giov. Glenn Youngkin meets with the community at Westwood Fountain in Richmond, VA on Thursday, February 16, 2023. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 17, 2023

Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Alison Linas, left, and Franklin greet Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Jennifer Guiliano and attorney Alex Clarke at the Henrico County Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court building on Friday.

Feb. 18, 2023

Fans take pictures during the All-alumni Block Party before VCU’s game against Fordham on Saturday.

Feb. 19, 2023

Virginia Tech's Georgia Amoore, left, waits for a pass from Elizabeth Kitley (33) during the first half of the team's NCAA college basketball game against North Carolina State on Sunday, Feb. 19, 2023, in Blacksburg.

Feb. 20, 2023

Richmond resident David Scates filed an appeal with the VEC last summer four days after the state agency notified him that he had been overpaid unemployment benefits after catching COVID-19 and losing his job. Now, Scates is one of almost 17,000 Virginians at risk of having their appeals dismissed because the VEC contends they filed too late.

Feb. 21, 2023

State Sen. Jennifer McClellan, D-Richmond, greets chief election officer and college friend Sheryl Johnson (right) at the Tabernacle Baptist Church polling station in Richmond, VA on Tuesday, February 21, 2023 as (from left) election workers Katie Johnson and Eric Johnson look on. McClellan is running to succeed Rep. Donald McEachin, D-4th. McClellan would be the first African American woman to represent Virginia in Congress and would give Virginia a record four women in its congressional delegation. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 22, 2023

Members of the media tour Fox Elementary School in Richmond, VA after Richmond Public Schools Chief Operating Officer Dana Fox provided an update on construction plans to rebuild the school on Wednesday, February 22. The building, which dates to 1911, was heavily damaged in a three-alarm fire on the night of Feb. 11, 2022. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 23, 2023

Marley Ferraro and her boyfriend, Zack Bannister, both VCU freshmen, spend time together between classes at Monroe Park as Thursday weather reaches around 80s in Richmond, Va., on Feb. 23, 2023.

Feb. 24, 2023

Sen. Aaron Rouse, left, D-Virginia Beach, talks with Sen. Jennifer McClellan, D-Richmond, before a general assembly session at the Virginia State Capitol in Richmond, Va., on Friday, Feb. 24, 2023.

Feb. 25, 2023

Jenna Anderson of Cosby High shows her medal to her dad, Waylon Anderson, after winning the 112-pound weight class during the VHSL Girls State Open Championships at Unity Reed High in Manassas on Saturday.

Feb. 26, 2023

Contestants in a duathlon race (run-bike-run competition) dash from the starting line in the first event of the West Creek Endurance Festival at the West Creek Business Park in Goochland County on Sunday.

Feb. 27, 2023

Eric and Linda Oakes speak to a small crowd before unveiling a plaque and bench dedicated to their son, Adam Oakes, in the VCU Student Commons building near the office of Fraternity and Sorority Life on February 27, 2023. The date marks the two-year anniversary of Oakes' death in a hazing incident, and VCU is calling this an annual hazing prevention day and day of remembrance for Oakes. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

Feb. 28, 2023

Jess Tanner (center) looks on as her daughters Aubrey (left), 10, and Charleigh, 8, deliver Girl Scout cookies to school counselor Michelle Nothnagel (right) and the other teachers and staff members at Manchester High School on February 28, 2023. With help from groups of retired teachers and others in the community, the girls, who are members of Girl Scout Troop 3654, raised over $1,000 to purchase the cookies for the staff. Jess Tanner, is an art teacher at Manchester and also a co-leader of their troop. EVA RUSSO/TIMES-DISPATCH

March 1, 2023

Shirley Wiest, left, and Wilma Bowman, center, show a blanket for a veteran with the help of Julie Wiest, daughter of Shirley Wiest, at Sunrise of Richmond in Henrico, Va., on Wednesday, March 1, 2023. Shirley Wiest and Wilma Bowman sewed over 3000 blankets for people at the VA Hospital, the Children’s Hospital and Moments of Hope Outreach among others.

Eric Kolenich (804) 649-6109

[email protected]

@EricKolenich on Twitter

Eric Kolenich

Eric Kolenich writes about higher education, health systems and more for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. He joined the newspaper in 2009 and spent 11 years in the Sports section. (804) 649-6109

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Please log in to use this feature, related to this story, eli lilly caps insulin cost at $35 a month.

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A Petersburg plant will sell insulin at 10% of retail price, possibly upending the market

A nonprofit is nearing completion on a facility that will make generic versions of three types of insulin. It will sell them for no more than …

Former Richmond pharma exec, cousin arrested for insider trading

A former Richmond pharmaceutical company executive has been arrested and accused of a pandemic-era insider trading scheme that allegedly nette…

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    If you hire a professional business-plan consultant, the rate will vary from person to person. Thumbtack, an online service that matches consumers with local professionals, quotes the average...

  19. How Much Does a Business Plan Cost?

    Consultants can charge around $3,000 to $15,000 for a complete business plan. For larger corporate projects, expect to see costs ranging $25,000 to $50,000. Writing It Yourself The cheapest way to get a business plan usually is to write it yourself.

  20. Business pricing & plans

    Acrobat for teams. US$22.19/mo/license. Annual subscription, includes 7.5 % discount. Cancel within 14 days for a full refund. Windows and Mac. US$266.29/yr/license. Equal to US$22.20/mo/license . Includes 7.5 % discount. Cancel within 14 days for a full refund.

  21. How to Write a Simple Business Plan

    That said, a typical business plan will include the following benchmarks: Product goals and deadlines for each month. Monthly financials for the first two years. Profit and loss statements for the first three to five years. Balance sheet projections for the first three to five years. Startups, entrepreneurs, and small businesses all create ...

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