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buy cheap equipment government surplus

Find and Buy equipment easily  for your business through SBA

The USA small business administration provides useful information about buying equipment, assets and government surplus for small businesses so that, you can decide which equipment and assets are good for running your small business successfully and also how you can pay for them. There are three main categories of assets in which you can divide them:

  • Tangible assets – Tangible assets are those assets that lose value with time such as building, equipment and vehicles but you need them for regular business activities. Tangible assets are counted on balance sheets as they can be assets such as property or equipment.
  • Intangible assets – These are the assets that have no physical presence such as your brand name, your business’s reputation or your extensive business network and relations. Although, these assets cannot be listed on a balance sheet but still they add a significant value to your small business.
  • Intellectual property – These are the assets that include logos, trademarks, software, patents, company website and are often protected by copyrights.

You can either choose to lease or buy the equipment

Once you have identified and selected which equipment you need then you can acquire them through lease or you can buy them also. Let’s understand the difference between leasing and buying the equipment:

Lease: If your chosen equipment or property is expensive and doesn’t fit your budget then leasing is always a good choice as it is less expensive than buying because you need less cash and don’t need to get a loan with a high interest rate. If your business needs a commercial space then it can also be leased easily with much less cash in hand.

  • Needs less cash compared to buying
  • Under a Short-term lease option you can test the commercial space or equipments whether they suit your requirements or not
  • No interest on monthly payments
  • Maintenance of the equipments or the commercial space can also be included in the monthly lease amount by negotiating with the owner
  • It maybe 100% tax deductible

Remember that every lease can be structured differently based on the needs, circumstances and negotiations between the lessor and the lessee so, always go through the offer many times that you are getting before signing the lease documents.

There are generally two different kinds of leases operating lease and capital lease and since the type of lease that you choose can have direct impact on your business taxes so, it is advisable to take help of an attorney who can review the lease terms and conditions for you and help you in choosing the best option.

Operating lease: it is more like a rental where you don’t own the assets and you just pay monthly for using the space or the equipment and so it doesn’t get added to your balance sheet. It is counted as operational expenses and generally you don’t have to take any extra burden of maintenance, tax obligations and other risks involved.

Capital Lease:  It is like a loan and the asset does get added to your balance sheet for the accounting purposes. Since, you are the owner of the assets you can claim depreciation and interest expenses.  All the risk, maintenance costs and tax obligations will be on you.

There are several factors that you should consider before leasing, short-term lease could cost you more every month while long-term lease may cost you less but the downside is that the total cost of ownership will be higher. Also, check for the terms and conditions and are there any penalties for terminating the lease early.

Buying the equipment:

Buying can be a good option for you if you are considering owning the equipment in long-term and if you have enough cash in hand but you have to bear the maintenance costs, tax and risks. Although, you can sell it off later for cash.

  • The lifetime cost is lesser than leasing
  • The assets are shown on your balance sheet
  • You can sell the equipments anytime when you don’t them anymore

The downsides of buying the equipments are:

  • You are liable for maintenance, risks and taxes involved
  • You need to spend a lot more initially compared to leasing
  • You may have to lend money from the bank to cover the cost of buying which generally have high interest rates

Should you buy the equipments with cash or credit?

It completely depends on your circumstances and your financial position. If you have enough cash to cover up the costs of buying the equipment as well as to cover up operational expenses then you don’t have to consider lending from the bank.

In case you have cash which can only cover up your buying costs then getting SBA loan can be good option to cover up your operating expenses. Getting a loan through SBA is simple and easy and they also guarantee loans for the small businesses.

The only downside of getting a loan is that it has higher fee and interest rates and some loans do have pre-payment penalties. Getting in touch with SBA for funding can be a good choice as they have lenders that specifically lend to the small business owners.

Buying Government Surplus can also be a good idea

Buying Government surplus goods from the federal agencies can be a good choice as the government surplus is often available at much lower prices than what you pay for in the market. You can buy government surplus through auctions, online sale or offline. Government surplus goods are available on “as is” basis.

List of federal agency websites where you can find government surplus:

https://www.usa.gov/buy-from-government

https://gsaauctions.gov/gsaauctions/gsaauctions

https://www.govsales.gov/govsales/govsales

Bottom Line

Whether to lease or buy the equipment is completely your choice and depends on many factors such as your current circumstances, your financial position and the nature of small business for which you need the equipment and assets. Buying government surplus is a better choice as it is much lower in cost compared to the open market prices. 

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How to buy cheap equipment government surplus for your business
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The US small business administration helps small businesses find and buy cheap equipment government surplus.
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