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Financial reviews, loan renewals and tax estimates keep us busy.

Kyle Stackhouse 2

January 29, 2021

2 Min Read
Cash flow analysis on computer. person working in office
iStock/Getty Images

I am slowly making the transition to shop work. Each day I continue to tidy up loose ends on the office side. Office work is not my favorite, and quite honestly I’m ready to be done! We have a lot of pre-season maintenance to get done this spring.

Part of the reason it has taken so long is financial reviews and loan renewals. I don’t know whose idea it was to move my renewal date to January, but I’m not liking it. It was no problem to do the year-end balance sheet, but it was a little more difficult to run a preliminary tax estimate. Nonetheless, I was able to get the process started the first week of the year.

Shopping for a loan

This year, I am shopping around for a loan. I’ve been with my current lender for probably 15 years, but (understandably) with the not so good ag economy the last few years, it has been harder to meet their analysis expectations. The other lender I’m talking to is a local bank where we have had the business accounts for years. Both are good institutions.

After a month of ‘analysis’ I can say we’re not done yet. My current lender is talking about an extension as they are still analyzing. I was floored yesterday when they told me that 2021 projections were not good. They sent me the file, and it showed profit! As I reviewed their revisions to my cash flow, they did find a couple items I missed, but they also doubled up on some items I included and overestimated some others.

It has been frustrating process.

We’re emailing and texting multiple times a day working through the details. I’m sure my loan officer is tired of seeing my file! The prospective lender gave me an indication 10 days ago as to what they could do. I have to double back today to make sure we are on the same page.

I’ve talked to several farmers in the same situation. There have been some recent years that were, simply put, survival years. I’m sure many of us didn’t think the downturn would last as long as it did. We all hope the corner has been turned and the last four months don’t turn out to be a ‘blip’ on the futures chart.

Probably the biggest take home lesson is the importance of getting to a positive cash position. Of course, that is easier said than done!

The opinions of the author are not necessarily those of Farm Futures or Farm Progress. 

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