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The value of a Small Business Advisor for your small business

Inflation is soaring to its highest levels in decades as a result of the pandemic, supply chain pressures and elevated oil prices. Central Banks around the world including the Bank of Canada are increasing interest rates to help slow inflation. That can make borrowing money to expand your business more expensive. 

A great first step for building business support is to assemble a team of advisors. A Scotiabank Financial Advisor and Small Business Advisor all bring different value and perspective to your financial well-being. Advisors are a key part of our three-pillar approach to service: knowing, advising and valuing you. This empathy-strong approach earned Scotiabank first place ranking in Small Business Customer Experience and Advocacy.1 

  • What does a Small Business Advisor do? 
    An advisor gets to know you, understand your business and your goals so together we can find solutions based on trust and value. These can include recommendations for credit cards, loan programs and lines of credit to suit your unique needs.  Advisors can be mentors helping you set your business strategy, financial practices, management policies and marketing plans. We explain everything in clear language so you can understand how we can help you achieve your goals.

    Small Business Advisors can start at the beginning to help you, an entrepreneur, with a vision to inform your business plan. As your business grows, we can continue to support and guide you on your journey.  As a full service bank, we can offer advice for both business and personal needs creating a holistic view of your finances.

    We can discuss with you your goals to gain insight and understanding. We can review your business plan to see if there are fundamental challenges that we can help you address. Even if you’re an established business owner there may be something you’ve overlooked which can be an opportunity for growing sales or cutting costs.

    Along the way, we can make recommendations on the best tools for your business, by connecting you and making referrals to our internal partners across Scotiabank. A Small Business Advisor is like adding another member to your team. We’re with you to help turn your challenges into opportunities.   

  • How to choose the right business banking advisor
    When choosing a business banking advisor, it’s important to ask questions to understand their perspective. Ask about their experience with businesses in your industry and life stage. How have they supported a business like yours? Does their vision align with your goals?

The effects of interest rates and inflation on your business

With inflation hitting levels not seen since the early 1990s, central banks like the Bank of Canada are raising interest rates to slow increases in prices. Prices are expected to level out, as supply chain shortages ease and government relief wrap up. It can take many months for the impact of higher interest rates to cool demand that drives inflation.

For business owners, we can help you align your borrowing to reduce your costs. If you are looking to borrow funds to grow your business, or are already borrowing, that’s when you could be affected by interest rates increases that could put pressure on cash flow. 

You can discuss opportunities with your banking advisor to improve cash flow. Lines of credit can help you make supplier and mortgage payments until conditions improve. An advisor can also suggest how industry-specific loan programs can soften business challenges. For businesses holding commercial mortgages, we can help to assess the benefits of a fixed rate vs. variable rate for the long term.

Also, we can help you determine if renting your office space or Manufacturing facilities is more beneficial than buying. Based on your plan, we can help you determine, if an operational cost, renting, or a capital cost, buying best suits your needs.

Good debt vs. bad debt

Advisors can help business owners manage good debt and bad debt. Good debt is when you’re using the appropriate credit solutions for your needs. A loan or line of credit is often a more efficient solution for short-term needs than credit cards that offer much higher interest rates on balances. Carrying balances on a credit card can be seen as bad debt because the cost is much more than using a line of credit for example. 

Bad debt is typically when you are overextended. To avoid this type of debt, stay close to your advisor, check your cash flow statements and know your numbers. If you have already encountered bad debt on your credit, it’s a good time to consider refinancing or consolidation with the guidance of your advisor.

The benefits of a Scotiabank Small Business Advisor

Our advisors can help you with your daily business banking needs. This includes setting up business banking accounts, recommending appropriate credit cards and efficient loans and lines of credit. We can help with payment methods for your suppliers and your customers, cash management services and the solutions you need if you have the goal of purchasing a building.

When specialist knowledge for an industry is required, we can bring in our partners who are experts in the respected field to work with you.   These could be healthcare, franchising or agriculture specialists.

Building a team of advisors to help navigate changes, uncertainty and challenges gives you a better chance of smoothing out the inevitable bumps, regardless of market conditions. Build your team today.