Do you want a flexible, lucrative career? You should consider being a bail bond agent, but don’t expect to be rolling in money when you start.
You’ll need to focus on money management so that you can pay for personal and business costs.
Keep reading to learn some money management tips.
1. Consider Your Professional Costs
Becoming a bail bond agent in North Carolina can be difficult, and it can cost some money. You’ll need to pay $263 for your surety bail bondsman application, and it will also have a $48 fee, making the total $311.
At some point, you’ll need to take an exam to prove you can be a good bond agent. As of 2021, the fee is $51.50.
If you’re going into this career without a ton of money in savings, you should budget accordingly. You may also need to pay fees for a pre-licensing education course, and fees can vary.
If you need to put these charges on a credit card, create a budget so that you can pay them off. That way, you won’t go into debt just to enter this field.
2. Determine the Rest of Your Budget
After you figure out how much you need to pay to start this career, you should consider your other expenses. Think about how much money you need to live on.
You’ll probably need more if you want to live in Charlotte than if you live in Asheville or another small town. You should also consider if you will live with a roommate or significant other or on your own.
One of the good things about being a bail bondsman is that you can make as much money as you want. But you need to know your minimum income to help with money management.
That way, you can make sure you bring home enough money each month. If you don’t earn enough, you can know to make changes, like taking more clients or raising your rates.
3. Think About a Specialty
Being a bail bond agent is already a specific field. But you can make your career even more specific by targeting specific people who need a bond.
For example, you could focus on working with felons, since they usually face higher charges and higher bonds. You can make more money from a few clients.
That can be a good option if you want to earn more or work less. Specializing in a specific area also means you can learn all about those crimes.
While you shouldn’t provide legal advice, you can build trust in your community. Then, people will know to contact you if they need an expert at getting a bond after committing a particular crime.
4. Determine Your Rates
After you know how much you need to make and if you want to work with specific cases, you can determine your rates. As a new bail bond agent, you won’t be able to charge as much as someone with more experience.
But you can charge more if you live in a city like Charlotte or Raleigh than in a smaller town. You may also be able to charge more if you work with clients who are greater flight-risks.
And when it comes to money management, think about how much work you can handle. If you don’t want to take on too many clients, you may need to charge a bit more.
But if you can take on more work, you won’t have to charge as much to make as much.
5. Set Up a Business Bank Account
If you work as a contractor or for yourself, you should get a business bank account. You can use the account to keep track of your earnings and expenses.
Keeping your business finances separate from your personal finances is essential when you work for yourself. You may not have the most consistent income at first, so it can be hard to tell how much money you’ve made if it’s all in one account.
A separate bank account can also help you plan ahead for paying self-employment taxes as a contractor. You can also plan for other business expenses, like hiring a bounty hunter if a defendant doesn’t show up to trial.
As a contractor, you can start your account under your name. You won’t need an LLC or other business structure when you get a business account.
6. Track Your Miles
Another tip for money management for bail bond agents is to track your mileage. If you drive to meet with clients or even to different offices, you can record that and include the miles as a business expense.
This can be a good option if you drive a lot for your work or if you work with clients in different cities. While travel isn’t a huge part of the job, you can save a little money here and there.
Before you add the mileage to your taxes, consider working with an accountant. They can help you go over your mileage records and determine how to save the most on your taxes.
7. Research Bounty Hunters
When it comes to money management, you should research local bounty hunters. You never know when you will need to hire one if a defendant doesn’t show up to a trial.
Consider how much you may be willing to pay to find a defendant. You can look around to find good bounty hunters that fit your budget and you can work with.
Meet with a couple of bounty hunters in your area to discuss their process and success rate. Then, you can keep a couple of them as contacts in case you need them.
While you never want to think about a defendant fleeing, it can happen. Having a reliable, affordable bounty hunter can help you manage your money as a bond agent.
Money Management as a Bail Bond Agent
Money management is essential for anyone, but it’s even more important for bail bond agents. When you work for yourself, you have to take care of business costs, and you also need to pay for things like rent and food.
Luckily, you can use multiple tips to help manage your money. Keep these tips in mind as you start and grow your bail bond business.
Do you want to become a bail bond agent? Apply now!