Get Back on Track

A Free Financial GPS To Get Your Farm Back on Track

Free, confidential support provided from Rural Financial Counselling Service NSW (RFCS NSW) is available to help you navigate the way forward following recent flood and severe storm events. 

Governments have made a range of financial assistance available to primary producers and rural small businesses, including Special Disaster grants and Disaster Recovery loans. While these crisis relief measures provide welcome assistance, for many farmers and small businesses the long-term recovery journey is now getting underway and may require additional support. 

RFCS NSW’s local Rural Financial Counsellors are experts at reviewing financial information and can work with you to review past performance. 

By helping you to understand your current position we can begin to analyse future business options.  This comprehensive analysis can then be used to create a tailored recovery plan, incorporating business goals and objectives, to get your business back on track.  

Planning and goal setting in your business can assist in times following crisis – working like a GPS to guide your business to get you where you want to go. RFCS NSW plans with you to ensure that a natural disaster doesn’t result in financial disaster. 

This planned approach helps ensure that whole communities and towns recover. A farmer spending money in town supports a local business to stay open and offer employment.  That business can make plans, even look at expanding, and they can continue supporting the community in ways such as offering sponsorship for the local football team or donating a prize for the school raffle. We can each play a part in community recovery because it really does start with one. 

RFCS NSW offer a free and confidential service specialising in agricultural and rural small business financial management. Our local Rural Financial Counsellors are skilled in business recovery and can guide you through the preparation work to gain the clarity and confidence you’re after. 

Some of the services and support RFCS NSW can provide include:  

Succession planning:

We’ve all heard the horror stories about farm succession planning gone wrong – farms being sold, family members who refuse to speak, heartbreak on all sides. But it can be avoided.  

How we can help: 

As a trained and independent listener, one of our rural financial counsellors can have those all-important initial discussions with you and your family about succession planning.  

We can:   

  • Help you understand what is involved and how best to navigate the process  
  • Advise which professionals to engage to help you with your succession plan  
  • Review the past performance of the enterprise  
  • Build financial skill sets within the family and road-test options through cash flows and enterprise budgets. 

Farm budgeting, forecasting & cash flow analysis:

Cash flow budgeting can help you understand the financial impact of your on-farm decisions. Some farmers believe that seasonal conditions are too variable to rely on cash flow budgeting, but this is exactly why your farm should have a cash flow budget. 

We will help you to: 

  • Create an accurate cashflow budget 
  • Better understand your farm’s cash position 
  • Understand what your best, worst and ‘average’ cash outcomes might be 

Farm debt mediation:

Farm Debt Mediation (prescribed under the Farm Debt Mediation Act 1994) is a structured negotiation process in which the mediator, as a neutral and independent person, assists the farmer and the creditor to communicate effectively, to resolve matters relating to farm debts, and to formalise that resolution in an agreement. 

Mediation is a simple, voluntary, and confidential process that is quick, accessible, and affordable. 

We can: 

  • Explain the Farm Debt Mediation forms and process 
  • Help to prepare for mediation including finding the right mediator 
  • Support you and other business partners to consider options realistically 
  • Provide you with support and assistance throughout the mediation process including mediation 
  • Help you with meeting agreed outcomes 

Bank reviews & relationships:

Annual business reviews can be a stressful part of owning an agriculture business. If you’re not sure about the information you need to provide, haven’t kept things up-to-date, or you’re worried that things don’t look great, it can make bank reviews even more nerve-wracking.  

We will:  

  • Spend time with you before your review or loan application to get to know the details of how your business has been performing  
  • Prepare explanations for any issues or variances in actuals versus budgets or predictions  
  •  Support you to consider and document your business goals, plans and contingencies for dealing with unforeseen changes in circumstance.  

Help refinancing debt including government debt:

Accessing rural loans and government assistance can sometimes feel overwhelming. There are a variety of rural finance grants and farm loans available, each with different eligibility requirements, but support is available to help you understand the differences.  

We can:  

  • Advise what government assistance, rural finance grants or loans you may be eligible for in the short and long term  
  • Help you understand farm loan interest rates in Australia 
  • Tell you what documents you need to provide to secure a rural loan or grant 
  • Help you consider long-term business changes to improve your financial position. 

RFCS NSW is a not-for-profit organisation with a goal to strengthen communities by helping rural and regional businesses be prepared, responsive and sustainable.  

Lost in your farm’s finances? We’ll help you find your way. Call us anytime on 1800 319 458 and we can help get your financial future in place. 

The Rural Financial Counselling Service Program is funded by the Australian Government and the New South Wales Government and is administered by the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry