As the second wave of covid spreads across India, Mint is teaching people across the country how they are saving, spending and facing the pandemic financially. Shikhar Srivastava, a 31-year-old entrepreneur, runs a digital marketing business. He resides in Lucknow with his parents. He writes down all his thoughts on money, investments and financial decisions for a week.
When did you first become financially responsible for yourself?
When I got my first job, I was 22. I gradually became financially independent and started investing in short and long term savings because I knew I would start my own project in the future.
When did you realize you wanted to be an entrepreneur?
I was working for an advertising agency in Delhi in 2013 when I decided that I wanted to satisfy my creative urge and make money. I started my business, which I believe could make a difference in the industry and give that boost to my financial aspirations.
How did you manage your money when you started your business?
Initially, I took out loans to start my business. Some funds were obtained through private resources at higher rates, while banking institutions and NBFCs later helped us with our funding. However, I realized that it is better to have enough cash and resources on hand to have smooth operations, otherwise IMEs and interest rates can hurt you a lot.
What has been the impact of the pandemic on your income, expenses and your business in general?
The pandemic has undoubtedly had a huge impact on the digital and physical advertising market. The demand for smart / digital solutions has increased dramatically but in the field we need the time and skilled resources to develop such digital and hassle-free solutions. Frequent lockouts, financial instability, uncertain working conditions and many other aspects keep brands playing it safe. Many well-known entrepreneurs and businesses focus on administration and operations instead of sophisticated projection and planning. So, the focus is definitely on fixed expenses such as salaries, credit card repayments, loan IMEs, taxes, and running expenses, as income is again limited and payments are overwhelming. delayed due to the economic downturn. As they say, it’s an interdependent loop.
Do you have insurance coverage?
Yes, with time and maturity, I realized that it is important to have insurance so that your family and even your work does not suffer because they have a financial cushion to face the difficult times. I have both term insurance and retirement insurance plans.
How do you invest your money?
After being an aggressive investor in the equity market, I have recently shifted slightly to traditional methods, possibly due to my long term goals.
So I try to maintain a balance between the markets and traditional investing with stocks, mutual fund SIPs (systematic investment plans) on one side and the Public Provident Fund, recurring deposits and deposits. at the end of the other.
Expert Speak: Leverage assets for a cheaper line of credit
Raj Khosla, founder and CEO of MyMoneyMantra.com, says the stress on Shikhar’s finances is evident. The problem may be rooted in the mountain of debt he has accumulated. Entrepreneurs need to be very careful with capital spending. In the early years, frugality is the key word, and they should cut corners where possible. Don’t buy anything unless it’s necessary and really adds value to your business, he adds.
Since Shikhar relies heavily on customer payments, he needs to build up an emergency fund and source of income that can help weather a financial crisis. Given its strained finances and existing loans, it is not possible to build one right away. But he can use his assets to get a line of credit. It’s a good idea to get a loan sanctioned against the property, which will unlock the value of her home and give her access to cheaper credit, says Khosla.
Rohan Ahuja, Senior Partner, Athena Legal, explains that when it comes to regulating the use of residential property for commercial purposes in India, it is governed by the applicable laws established by the municipal authority or authority. of town planning. However, operating a business in residential premises is not completely prohibited, but depends on the nature of the business activity, the percentage of use of the space of the premises and the applicable local laws regarding zoned.
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