Budgets and Financial Records
Standard ranch financial records cover all production and financial management
aspects of a beef operation. Use records to evaluate your business in terms of efficient use of resources and
productivity. Records are important for ranch planning, tax reporting, and applying for credit.
Decisions are only as good as the information on which they
are based. Budgets provide the information for making ranch management decisions and are constructed to estimate
the outcomes of future activities. Budgeting allows you to anticipate problems that you may encounter, and to
alleviate or avoid them.
The way ranchers keep
financial records varies, but the key is to use a system that provides the information you need to meet your
responsibilities. The minimum set of financial records should include a balance sheet, a statement of cash flow,
and an income statement.
There are several ways to keep accurate records. Until the advent of the computer, all
records were "hand kept," and this still is a good method for many farms. Hand-kept records are inexpensive and
easy to store. On the other hand, this method may be slow and subject to errors. Retrieving information may be time
consuming if extensive records are kept.
Computerized record systems are available, from simple checkbook balancing systems to
sophisticated, double-entry accrual programs. Computerized systems for production records also are available in a
range of features and reporting capabilities.
Advantages include easy retrieval of information and reduced chance of mathematical
errors. However, entering information takes time, and entries must be posted properly.
If you choose a computer system, it should meet the requirements and objectives of your
Take A Break - Go Fishing.
Small Beef Cattle Farm Management.