Is Starting a Business Too Risky?

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Dear Dave,

I work as a software developer, and recently a co-worker approached me about starting a side business together. We would create apps for the legal community with advice from my wife, who is a lawyer. The only problem is that we’re in the middle of Baby Step 2 of your plan, and we still have some debt to pay off. Do you think starting a business would be too risky at this point? — Jeremy

 

Dear Jeremy,

It sounds to me like this is the kind of idea that would require more in the way of brain sweat and time than money. I would just think of it as a part-time side job and go for it. However, make sure you have a clear understanding of exactly how much — if any — financial support would be required. Set these financial boundaries, and also be clear on when you expect the business to make money.

One thing I would warn against is ending up in a partnership if this thing becomes a success. Partnerships are bad news in the business world, so I’d advise you to figure out a way to structure things where you each own different parts — something more along the lines of a joint venture.

But in terms of doing some side deals, creating some cool new apps, and making money in the process? Absolutely, I would do that. Just figure out an intelligent way to structure the business and finances so you don’t get pinched! — Dave

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Dave Ramsey

America's trusted voice on money and business, Dave Ramsey is a personal money-management expert and extremely popular national radio personality. His four New York Times best-selling books—Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover, and EntreLeadership—have sold more than 7 million copies combined. His latest book, EntreLeadership: 20 Years of Practical Business Wisdom from the Trenches, debuted at number one on the New York Times best-selling list.

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