Where is My Money? Factoring Your Cash Flow

Appraisers have shared a common concern with me when I visit with them and learn more about their businesses  – “When am I going to get paid?” and “Where is my money?”. Many tell me that on average they do not collect their fees for 45 to 60 days. You have financial obligations to meet: payroll, taxes, travel expenses, etc. Cash flow delays can cause great stress for you and your appraisal business.

You must understand and be aware of the importance of cash. Cash is the lifeblood of any business and without it your business will fail. One of the main challenges that appraisers face is how to maintain a consistent cash flow in order to survive and grow.

Factoring is the solution!

What is Factoring?

This effective financial tool is selling your accounts receivables or invoices to get paid sooner for the work that has been done. Factoring accounts receivables is an effective way of improving and increasing the cash flow of a business. Factoring allows an appraiser to collect their fees easily and quickly. A factoring company can fund an appraiser 95% of the value of the invoices or accounts receivables submitted and such transactions are typically approved and funded to the appraiser within 24 hours (rather than waiting past 30, 60 or even 90 days).

Factoring Allows You to Do Much More

Receiving your fees much sooner allows you to meet your financial obligations. Most creditors require you to pay within 30 days and some charge interest. Having the ability to pay expenses and bills on time reduces or eliminates interest fees and improves the financial condition of your business. You can take advantage of early payment discounts in some cases also.

Factoring also helps you grow your appraisal business.  Instead of spending time on the phone, email, or face-to-face to ask your client when you can expect payment, getting your fees paid quicker allows you to focus on what you do best, gives you more time market and sell yourself, and make more money!

Selling your invoices to a factoring company and receiving your fees within a day or two rather than an average of 45 to 60 days can reduce or eliminate stress of running a business. No more worrying about how you will pay your bills or how you will meet payroll if you have a staff.

Finding a Factoring Company

Not all factoring companies are the same. It is important to find the right company that will customize a factoring program that fits your appraisal business. Good and experienced factoring companies can fund your business typically within 24 hours. There are those companies that do not require you to be in a long-term contract – meaning you are not locked in a contract where you have to factor your invoices for 6 months, 1 year, or longer. In addition, find a factoring company that has “no minimum volume” which means you are not required to submit all of your invoices… just those that historically pays slow. And finally, ask a company if they offer “non-recourse” factoring. This means that once an invoice has been verified and approved the factoring company takes 100% of the collection risk.  You can wash your hands of that invoice completely and move on to the next order.