It’s difficult to support a family while your spouse serves in the military. Military families often move every two to three year, so spouses are constantly on the move. This makes it difficult for them to have a job and a career.
“You never know what’s coming, you didn’t know when or where you’re going,” said Flossie, a mother to four and husband of Michael, a Chief Petty officer in the U.S. Navy.
“You get beaten up psychologically and emotionally, because you don’t have the opportunity to pursue your career goals, you don’t really get to plug in,” she said. “You really lose your identity.”
Sometimes, military spouses face higher unemployment than civilians. They had a 26% wage gap in 2019 and a 22% unemployment rate. This year, the unemployment rate could reach 35%.
Flossie, a mother of 4 and husband of Michael, a Chief Pletty Officer in U.S. Navy, co-founded the Association of Military Spouse Entrepreneurs, to help military spouse entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses.
Kelli Taylor | Purple Tree Photography
Hall and many others have turned their backs on traditional employment to pursue entrepreneurship. According to the Military Spouse Chamber of Commerce, 48% of the more than 12,000,000 military spouses in the U.S. are self-employed, business owners or aspire so.
Hall stated, “You don’t have to be in traditional employment and leave your job every two or three years.” “You can start your business and decide your own salary and career path.
She co-founded Association of Military Spouse Entrepreneurs. This group connects military spouse entrepreneurs to the resources and tools they need to succeed in growing and launching their businesses.
“When I started AMSE … there was lots of great resources for veterans, and veteran entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs, but nothing specifically for military spouse entrepreneurs,” she said.
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Melissa Green, a Navy veteran, is a mother to four children and the wife Landis Green, a retired Gunners Mate in U.S. Navy. Hall is one of the nearly 2000 entrepreneurs Hall has helped.
She said that it was difficult to start my own business while my husband was serving in the military.
However, with AMSE’s support, she launched her own coffee company, Southern, Sweet & Sassy, out of her home earlier this year.
Melissa Green, a Navy veteran and mother of four, and Landis Green, a retired Gunners Mate in U.S. Navy, started her own coffee company from her home in 2015.
Tara Falcone, a certified financial advisor, has also taken up entrepreneurship since leaving Wall Street. John Falcone is her husband?She was often re-stationed as an Officer in the U.S. Navy and found greater flexibility in entrepreneurship. ReisUP was her financial technology company. She stated that she would encourage other military spouses to start businesses.
She stated, “I have never felt more purpose driven and more excited about the future.”
Here are Falcone’s top tips for military spouses who want to start their own business:
To make sure that you can deduct certain expenses for your business, you should form an S corporation, single-member LLC, or C corporation. This can offset any income you earn.
2. 2. Get an accountant
If you are a sole proprietor and your business generates income, you will most likely need to pay quarterly taxes on the projected revenue of your business or the estimated profit for the year. Falcone recommends consulting an accountant to ensure you are doing everything correctly.
3. Keep an emergency fund.
Falcone stated that “Entrepreneurship is very up-and-down.” “Depending on your industry and what’s going on in the market … it’s not always a very kind of steady, expected, easy path.”
She recommends that you have a savings account for your family and your business. This will ensure that even if you hit a bump or have low revenues, you can still operate your business.
4. Contribute to Retirement
Falcone stated, “Even if your spouse is serving in the military, you should still be contributing to your retirement plan,”
You can fund an IRA, a Roth IRA as well as a traditional IRA. Even if your spouse hasn’t earned income during the year, they can contribute to a spousal IRA for you and up to the annual limit. Depending on your business structure, you can also set up SIMPLE IRAs and SEP IRAs. Falcone says that this will offer additional tax benefits, depending on your financial situation.
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