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How to Determine Realistic Startup Costs for Starting in India

Estimating your startup expenditures is a crucial step in creating a business roadmap, just like your business plan.

How to Determine Realistic Startup Costs for Starting in India
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How much would starting your startup cost? Although it's difficult to say for sure, it's critical to get planning as soon as possible to prevent any unanticipated costs.

A successful business launch demands planning. Even though you might not be able to predict these costs precisely, you can and should start doing some research to get a rough idea of how much it will cost to launch your company.

What are Startup Costs?

Startup expenses are those incurred prior to the start of the business. These are the invoices and costs you'll have to pay before your business officially launches. Your company will often come under one of three categories: a service-based company, an online business, or a brick-and-mortar company, however every business will have unique startup costs to consider.

Why Founder should calculate Startup Costs?

Estimating your startup expenditures is a crucial step in creating a business roadmap, just like your business plan. Even a reasonable estimate might help you keep on track during more volatile months and avoid taking needless risks.

You're still not persuaded to investigate your beginning costs, are you? Here are a few more justifications for why you ought to figure out your startup costs.

1. Every Startup is different

There is no easy formula to calculate beginning costs because each sector and firm requires a wide range of expenses. However, that doesn't preclude you from making an educated assumption that faithfully reflects the requirements of your company.

For example, a SaaS company may need to budget for extra online resources or server costs to maintain the functionality of its website. However, a clothing store, whether physical or online, must budget for physical inventory and transportation costs.

2. To establish a Firm Foundation

Many people misjudge the costs of starting a business and do so in an impulsive, unplanned manner. This might be effective in the short term, but maintaining it is usually considerably more challenging. Customers are frequently cautious of new enterprises with improvised logistics, making it nearly impossible to manage initial costs until you correctly calculate them.

3. To Build your Business Plan

A summary of your present financials and growth projections can be found in your business plan. One of the essential components of creating a workable financial strategy is having realistic startup launch costs, even if they are only estimations. Knowing the requirements to launch your business can help you:

  • Estimate profits
  • Conduct a breakeven analysis
  • Extend the runway of your business
  • Identify potential tax deductions

You must regularly evaluate your business / financial plan during the course of your company's existence in order to successfully leverage it. These early startup estimates will give you a starting point to use as a guide during these assessments. You'll be able to tell if your calculations are accurate or if you need to make any revisions after a few months of operation.

4. To 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.

How to Identify your Startup Expenses

It involves a combination of market research, testing, an deducated guessing, just like when creating your business plan or estimating your initial sales. It's up to you to make the necessary adjustments in light of ongoing findings.

For specific spending categories, you can use your competitors' and the industry's benchmarks as a starting point. Instead of copying the costs you find verbatim, see if your predictions are reasonable in light of the market's current conditions. If you have a good working relationship with your vendors or your company strategy allows you to avoid atypical expense, you can find that you have a competitive cost advantage.

1. Startup Expenses

These are charges that must be paid up front before you launch and begin to make money. These ought to be divided into one-time and recurring costs. You can give yourself a more precise estimate of how much it will cost to begin your firm by dividing them up in this manner. Here are some frequent expenses to consider in both categories:

A) One-Time Expenses

  1. Permits and licenses
  2. Incorporation fees
  3. Logo design
  4. Website design
  5. Brochure and business card printing
  6. Signage
  7. Down payment on rental property
  8. Improvements to the chosen location

B) Ongoing expenses

  1. Rent
  2. Payroll
  3. Taxes
  4. Legal services
  5. Loan payments
  6. Insurance payments
  7. Utilities
  8. Marketing costs

These are but a few of the various expenses you might have to take into account. Some costs will fluctuate between being fixed and variable, while others will operate as fixed costs. You'll be able to keep better track of your spending and spot any organic cost-cutting opportunities over time if you have them laid out in this manner from the beginning.

2. Startup Assets

These are outflows related to long-term assets you bought to launch your business. Although money in the bank is the most fundamental startup asset (and we'll talk more about that later), you might also need to invest in the following:

  1. Starting inventory
  2. Computers or other tech equipment
  3. Office Equipment
  4. Office Furniture
  5. Vehicles

Why it is important to separate Assets and Expenses?

Now you know why it's important to divide costs into assets and expenses. Because expenses are deducted from income, they lower taxable income. On the other hand, assets cannot be deducted from income.

You may be able to save money on taxes by first separating the two. Additionally, you can prevent overstating your assets on the balance sheet by appropriately recording expenses. While having more assets generally gives you a better appearance, having assets that are pointless or unsubstantiated merely adds to the size of your books and may even cause them to be wrong.

When starting a firm, it is a good idea to list these separately, which leads to the final factor to take into account when estimating startup costs.

How to identify Capital Required to star your Startup

An estimate of the amount of cash your startup business needs to have on hand in its bank account upon launch. The money you raised through investments or loans less the cash you spent on expenses and assets is generally your cash balance on the commencement date.

You still need this to complete the picture in order to get going. Watch your cash flow estimates as you develop your plan. If your cash balance falls below zero, you'll need to either raise funding or cut costs.

How Much Money Do You Need?

Many business owners make the decision to raise more money than they actually need in order to have extra cash on hand for unforeseen circumstances. While that makes sense when you can implement it, it can be challenging to explain to investors. Since it is their money, outside investors don't want to offer you more than you require.

Experts may advise you to start with enough money to cover your expenses for anywhere between six months and a year. Though it sounds good in theory and would be fantastic for peace of mind, it is rarely feasible. Additionally, it tampers with your estimates and lessens their significance.

Calculate the deficit spending you'll probably incur in the first few months of the company to get a clearer idea of how much cash you actually need in the bank. After that, make an estimation of how much money you'll require each month or year until you reach a consistent break-even point.

How to Estimate? How Much your Expenses Will Cost

It's essential to add up your possible assets, costs, and starting capital in order to estimate your total startup costs. You can create these estimations using one of two possible approaches.

The most conventional approach, which I refer to as the worksheet method, is making separate worksheets for starting financing and starting charges.

1. 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.

2. The Live Plan method — Consolidated estimates

Live Plan proposes a different and perhaps more intuitive technique to evaluate beginning costs. Live Plan's estimates begin when a business starts spending rather than when it debuts and begins to generate income, which is the main distinction between it and conventional techniques. The launch date and pre-launch spending are not separated. Therefore, no particular startup table exists.

Here are common financing options to consider:

Investment: what you or another person invests in the business. It appears on the balance sheet as paid-in capital in the end. This is the traditional idea of a business investment: buying stock in a firm and taking a financial risk in the goal of making a profit afterwards.

Accounts payable: debts that are unpaid or have a deadline for repayment based on your balance sheet. This typically refers to credit card debt. Your balance sheet's opening balance is determined by this sum.

Current borrowing: Standard debt, bank borrowing, Small business administration borrowing, or other current borrowing are all examples of current borrowing.

Other current liabilities: additional liabilities that are not subject to interest. This is where you should enter any loans you received from friends, family, or founders. By the way, we don't advise using interest-free loans for funding, but when they do, they go here.

Long-term liabilities: Long-term debt or long-term loans.

Aim for Long-Term Success with Realistic Startup Costs

Make sure you've thought of every part of your business and incorporated relevant charges when estimating your startup costs, whether you utilize the Live Plan method or the conventional approach. You'll stand a better chance of obtaining loans, luring investors, calculating profitability, and comprehending your company's cash runway.

You'll have a more accurate perspective of your company's immediate future if you precisely set out startup costs and make revisions as you incur them.

About Jordensky

At Jordensky, we are committed to providing an experience of the highest caliber while specializing in accounting, taxes, MIS, and CFO services for startups and expanding businesses.

When you work with Jordensky, you get a team of finance experts who take the finance work off your plate– ”so you can focus on your business.

Also, Read

Top 5 Financial Challenges faced by Startups in India - Jordensky

How to Value Startup - 9 Real World Valuation Method used by Investors in India

Akash Bagrecha

Co-Founder of Jordensky