Host Katie Wantoch and Jenny Vanderlin, Associate Director of the UW Center for Dairy Profitability, discuss whether a farmer should refinance his loans and tips for communicating with his ag lender.
The farm financial model offers a linear and circular process for informed decision-making. Records feed into reports, and reports help farmers integrate financial sense into farm production decisions.
Farming is a complex business which demands accurate records and careful financial management.
An accounting system is a set of actions and methods designed to collect, store, and process financial transactions into management reports for decision-making.
The balance sheet is a report of the farm business’ financial position at a moment in time. It lists assets, liabilities, and net worth (owner’s equity), and represents a snapshot of the farm business as of a certain date.
The income statement is a report of the farm business’ financial performance during a given time frame. It measures profit or loss in a given time period.
The statement of cash flows tracks the sources and uses of cash in the farm business in the past year. It also adds insight to the understanding of financial position and performance of the farm business.
The statement of owner equity reconciles the change in equity from the beginning balance sheet to the ending balance sheet for the farm business. Also known as the statement of net worth, shows the source of change.
Prospective farm equipment buyers today have several sources for finding the right machine for their operation. UW-Madison Extension offers tips for searching online for farm equipment.
Once you’ve decided to buy a piece of farm equipment, your next challenge is sourcing it. UW-Madison Extension provides tips on finding equipment off-line.
Successful farm tractor ownership requires a plan for scheduled maintenance and repairs as needed. This is especially true when purchasing a used farm tractor. UW-Madison Extension provides tips on keeping a tractor in good working condition.
If you are considering a purchase of a used farm tractor or other machine, even if you are not using it to do traditional farm work, safety must be a prime consideration. UW-Madison Extension provides some critical priority checkpoints to protect the personal safety of yourself, family members, workers and others who might be using the equipment that you purchase.
Once you have a list of tasks and implements needed to perform those tasks, do some research on the minimum horsepower required to power those implements. UW-Madison Extension provides guidance on choosing a tractor to fit your needs.
Knowing what jobs tractors are and are not intended for can help you decide if one is necessary for your operation. UW-Madison Extension provides a list of considerations when thinking about purchasing a tractor.
When you’re in the market to buy a used tractor or other piece of equipment, you’ll likely notice the differences in features between older and newer models as you look through sale listings. The good news is that despite all of these changes and the evolution of mechanized technology used in agriculture, tractors and other types of farm equipment are generally built to last. Older farm equipment that is well-maintained can be fully functional though it may lack more modern and important safety, comfort, or technology features.
There comes a time in the process of starting a farm business when you’ll likely benefit from some expert advice. UW-Madison Extension provides tips for where to find advisors who can serve as a sounding board for your ideas.
Writing out a complete business plan is a time-consuming feat. Before you spend your time and energy writing a multi-page narrative, explore your ideas with a simple tool – the Lean Canvas. Adapted for use by startups, this simple one-page matrix can be a valuable tool to help farm entrepreneurs test a business idea in the context of nine key areas.
Do you count yourself among those who dream of being a farmer? Do you have some property and want to do something productive with it, maybe even make money off it? Are you seeking land and working on developing a viable plan for a future farm business? UW-Madison Extension provides tips fir generating viable ideas for a farm-based business