Business Ownership & Friendship

March 16, 2012 at 8:26 am in Work & Money by Vicki H

I’ve co-owned a small service business in a major metro area for 15 years with a life long friend. It’s been a great experience but no longer profitable for me to continue. I’m 58 and my husband and I are down to four months living expenses left in savings. (Good news is retirement at 65 is covered. But that’s 7 years away.) Never thought I’d be in this situation at 58 but here it is. No one knows our finances are so tight – am somewhat embarrassed but it is what it is.

My business partner (50/50 ownership) is the technician and can continue on his own. Do I look for another job without telling him? Or do I discuss my situation and ask for input? We’ve known each other since college and our families are good friends but they’re not aware of our financial issues. (Buying me out isn’t an option… we meet expenses and pull modest salaries, not a lot there.)

Don’t want to underestimate myself but am feeling oddly vulnerable in this professional/personal relationship. Thanks for any thoughts or suggestions.

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