Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Tips on Taking Your Freelance Career to the Next Level

freelance earnings
As a freelancer there comes a time when your level of success takes you beyond what you can reasonably cope with on your own and you need to take your freelance business to the next level.

But it’s important to do it right and if you are ready to expand your business there are a lot of things to consider – firstly if it’s right for you as it can be a big leap from the freedom of only being responsible for yourself, to having staff potentially.

We asked our friends from Crunch, a company that works with freelancers a lot, and they gave us a few things to consider when you are planning to take your freelance career up a notch:

1. Business branding

You need to look at your branding if you want to grow, particularly if you currently operate under personal branding. It’s important that your branding is flexible and can adapt with your growing business and can retain your expertise and authority.

2. Make sure your website is ready

Many freelancers set up simple websites when they start out with personal profiles but if you are planning to expand then your website needs to be up to scratch and also able to flex and change with your business. It needs to be professional and have the option to add in new services, products and staff pages as required.

3. Assess your products and services

You need to look at the products and services which you offer and see where you can grow and where the gaps are. Check your pricing levels and packages offerings to see where you can make improvements and add in extra opportunities for your clients.

4. Talk to your customers

Talk to your customers to find out what they think of your services and if there are any services which they’d like in addition so that you can grow your business alongside your current clients. Look for services which you can offer in partnership, even if it means partnering up with another business to offer them – it’s all a way to grow your business. If you are a designer and your clients request photography then plan to partner with a photographer, for example.

5. Take on staff

If you have got to the point where your level of work exceeds your capability then you may need to take on staff. This might mean staff to help with client work, or it might mean staff to handle other aspects of the business such as an accountant, or an admin assistant, to free up your time to work on the business aspects.

6. Continuous learning and development

As your business starts to grow you will find yourself facing new challenges which will require new skills such as dealing with staff or handling larger contracts and tenders, so you will need to grow your skill base.

As a business owner continuous learning and development should be part of your remit anyway but at this particular turning point in your freelance business it becomes more important than ever to keep your skills updated regularly.

7. Increase your marketing

If your company is growing then you need to up your marketing along with it to ensure it accurately reflects your new offerings, new staff and new approach in order to attract more of the business you need.

8. Improve your expert positioning

As your business starts to grow more and more people will be turning to you for your expertise so make sure you are positioning yourself and your business as leading the way in your industry area. You can position yourself by writing authoritative thought leadership articles, white papers and by giving talks at industry events, among other activities. Being recognised as a leader in your field will go a long way to take your freelance career up a gear.

9. Boost your networking efforts

Boosting your networking efforts goes hand in hand with upping your marketing and becoming a recognised expert. By networking more on a broad scale you will be able to make more and more people aware of what you do and the new services you will be offering so will hopefully meet some new clients that way.

And by networking within your own industry you will become aware of more and more opportunities to promote your business and your expertise at relevant industry events and exhibitions.

Taking your freelance career to the next level might seem scary and going back in the world of working in a team and having colleague and bosses however, it might also be the very ambition you have been working towards.

Growing your freelance career to become your own business with employees and a broad range of services and products is an incredibly exciting time and if you follow all o of the tips outlined here it will help you carve your own path to success.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Ways to Earn Extra Income During a Financial Hardship

financial difficulties
Life is much like riding a roller coaster with many ups and downs. Because of this, many people who don't have a budget in place, and live paycheck to paycheck, often experience a severe financial hardship that can be difficult to survive. The good news is that there are many ways to bring in additional money to help ease your financial woes.

Take Out a Loan

During an emergency, if you need access to funds immediately, you can reach out to a family member and ask to borrow money for a few weeks. If this is not something available to you, then you can apply for personal installment loans. In many cases, even if your credit isn't at the preferred level to lenders, these types of loans are easier to acquire.

Sell Things You No Longer Need

A fast way to put some money into your pocket is to sell things you no longer want or need. Check around in your attic, basement or garage and see what you have stored away. If you've resided at the place residence for more than a few years, chances are pretty good, that you have things that others will want to buy. You can have a yard sale or you can take advantage of the computer age and post pictures with a description online at sites such as Craigslist, eBay or the Facebook Marketplace.

Use Your Skills

Most people have acquired skills that they can use to earn additional income. Maybe you enjoy working on cars or you're able to fix just about anything around the house, like a handyman. There's an abundance of public need for services such as lawn care, babysitting and tutoring. You can also check online and apply to do things like take surveys or write for blogs. While they won't make you rich, they will supplement your income and help pull you over the hurdle.

Pay Your Bills on Time

Yes paying your bills on time saves you money, and surprisingly in more ways than you might imagine. When you pay them on time you don't incur a late fee and with some companies that can add up to hundreds over the course of a single year. Beyond the late fees, late payments can cause your credit score to take a hit. Suddenly, you are no longer on the "A" list for lenders so you pay more for things like a mortgage or a car loan and insurance. A low credit score can even prevent you from getting hired at a new company.

Trim the Fat

Every household has areas that need improving. When you find yourself in a tough financial time, trimming the waste can help you make it through. For instance, if you dine out or order take-out at least once a week, cut it back to once or twice a month. The same applies to buying coffee on the way to the office and eating lunch out.

Additionally, start paying close attention to your monthly bills, more specifically your cable bill. This is an excellent starting place for removing wasted money. Instead of paying for many extra channels, half of which you don't ever watch, remove them, and go to basic service until you free up monies to live more comfortably.

Most people will have a period of time in their lives where money is tight. Luckily, when these pitfalls occur there are ways to increase your income and continue to enjoy a comfortable life.

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Should college students and teens possess credit cards?

burden of cards
Credit card debt is one of the biggest problems and year after year, there are millions of people who find themselves knee deep in debt. As the interest rates start soaring higher, the payments get missed and this has an overall bad impact on your credit score. While it can be financially traumatic to carry huge loads of credit card debt, credit plays a vital role in our lives. Would you like to purchase a house? If answered yes, unless you have enough money in your bank account, you will require financing it through a lending institution.

Above all, you will need stellar credit rating in order to get the loans that you wish to. How are you supposed to build credit rating if you don’t use credit cards? If you don’t take out online installment loans, you won’t be able to build credit rating. So, let’s read on to know more on young people and debt.

Debt and its impact on the young generation

Once a person turns 18 years of age, they can qualify for their own credit cards and loans and hence they become primary target for the lenders. Since they’re the ultimate vulnerable generation, the lenders are eager to get them into business. This is why most college campuses are filled with credit card vendors and banks which give away freebies so as to attract the younger adults to apply for credit cards. But the young people should be aware of few things before saying ‘yes’ to credit cards.

The biggest problem with applying for their first credit card is that they don’t focus on the terms, interest rates and other features of the card. If they choose the wrong card, they may prepare themselves for failure from the very beginning. There are almost many who aren’t educated about debt and credit cards. All they know is that they have to pay back the money but they understand very less on minimum payments and interest rates. This is when things get out of control.

What makes students apply for credit?

Despite all the negative upshots of credit card debt, there is no doubt about the fact that all students need a credit card. The primary reason behind this is to establish a positive credit history. Being a teenager, you have to build a credit score and hence for that having a credit card is necessary. But that doesn’t mean that you can use your credit cards in any way you want. You have to be sincere about the way you use your cards. Suppose you take out online loans from, wouldn’t you try your best to pay them back on time so as to avoid building debt? Similar is the case with credit cards as non-ability to make payments on time will lead to high interest debt.

Therefore, if you’re a teen, you’ve got to be responsible about your finances, especially about your credit cards. Use them properly so that you don’t incur debt.

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Avoid shady lenders and loan scams – How to remain aware

faulty loans
There is no doubt about the fact that the internet makes everything easier and you should deem yourself to be tech-savvy if you want to accomplish tasks online. With the advancements in the fields of technology and the development of apps, everything from paying off your bills to ordering your pizza can be done online. However, did you stop to think that ordering a loan online will have higher stakes as because you need to provide private financial information to people whom you don’t know.

The safest way in which you can borrow money online is by ensuring that you’re dealing with a reputable and trustworthy lender. You also need to watch out for the red flags so that you don’t run the two major risks which are:
  • Ending up paying a hefty amount: Even though you may grab a loan, you may end up paying a huge amount if you take the loan from a shady lender. On the contrary, if you could take the loan from a reputable lender, you will get the same loan amount for less money.
  • Losing money: This is a real risk which has to be avoided by any means. The fake lenders can easily claim the world and charge fees for approving the loan. At the end, you never get what you paid for.
Choosing the right lender

Dealing with a reputable and legitimate lender will safeguard you from several issues. Do your homework by researching on the lenders, reading their positive and negative reviews so that you can get a clear idea on how they help you. You need to keep in mind that everything that you find on the internet is not true. Hence, it is best if you could lend from a lender who is trustworthy and reputable.

Before you hurry up for submitting an application, make sure you check for complaints with the CFPB or the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau which maintains a database of complaints regarding financial products. All these complaints are posted online within a fortnight. As long as reputable referrals are concerned, you have to ask your family and friends who have borrowed. Ask them how things went with regards to the loan program. The closer is your source, the more confident you will be about the reference that he gives you.

You should avoid sources which are less reliable like the following:
  • An email out of nothing: If you receive an email where a shady company asks you to take loans from them, don’t fall for them. Spammers usually send such mails to millions and the same is true for someone who comes down at your doorstep for loans.
  • Phone calls which are unsolicited: Do you suddenly get calls from a blocked or unsolicited number? Even though it seems that you get the call from a local number, you should avoid such calls as they’re mostly scam.
So, if you’re someone who is eager to know about the different ways in which you can choose a trustworthy lender for your loans, keep in mind the above listed points.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Common Financial Worries Families Face

financial issues
As you grow older, you start to learn that there are many responsibilities as an adult. With those responsibilities tends to come concerns and worries. It could be anything as small as what you’re going to do on the weekend to something more significant like the future of your family.

One worry that is quite common for many families relates to their finances. At one point or another, you’ve probably caught yourself worrying about your financial situation. Money tends to be one of, if not the top concern for many.

What about finances that make families so concerned? Take a look at some of the common financial worries families face.

Unexpected Expenses

The unexpected is something that can make even the strongest person worry, especially when it comes to finances. Even if you have an emergency fund and are prepared for any expense thrown your way, you’re likely to be still somewhat concerned over if you can or cannot afford it.

A 2017 study from Bankrate found that 24 percent of Americans have no emergency fund set up in case of unexpected expenses. However, only 31 percent say they have enough of a cushion to cover six months of expenses.

Preparing for unexpected expenses can be tricky. For starters, you may need that money right at this moment. However, if you don’t set aside an emergency fund, if the time comes that you do have unexpected expenses, it could throw you deep into debt.

Healthcare and Insurance Costs

A significant financial worry involves your healthcare coverage and insurance policies. Paying for coverage that you either rarely use or hope to not use at all can be frustrating. There are likely many other things that you could use the money for.

When it comes to things like life insurance, for many families it is a necessity that they budget for. Even though they know the expense is coming every month, they may still worry about if they can afford the coverage. If you’re in this situation, there are things you can do to help reduce the cost of your premiums. If you’re looking at getting insurance, shop around and get quotes to find an affordable policy.

Losing an Income

Losing an income can be catastrophic for many families, especially if it is your only source of an income. If you lost your job and didn’t have that income anymore, would you be able to continue with your lifestyle?

The concern of losing an income is a reality for many. However, it is one that could be prevented by that emergency fund mentioned before. Another way to protect yourself against this is by getting the right insurance to help cover expenses.

Paying Off Debt

Another big worry for many is debt. At one point or another in life, you’ve likely come face to face with debt. It could be big or small. Either way though, you're bound to worry about it.

Debt puts a kink in many families plans. It can prevent you from doing something you love or even getting a mortgage for your first home. Trying to pay off debt as quickly as possible is a big worry.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

The advanced concept of losing trades in Forex market

forex market study
Many traders think that they will only lose money when they are trading and losing trades. If use common sense, it is right because the only way traders can lose money is by placing a trade and not winning the trade. The market will take the money and you will lose the profit. However, it is not the only way when you are losing money. Sit tight in your chair because what we are going to tell you will blow your mind away. It is not something less than the ‘Interstellar’ and it will make you realize, how wrong you were all those times when you were thinking you are saving your investment by not trading.

No matter which trading system you follow losing trades are inevitable. The experts of the Singaporean trading community knows this fact very well and they always suggest the new investors trade with the money that they can afford to lose. At the initial stage of your career, you should never be looking for big winners. Your first priority should be the saving your investment. Try to learn the advance trade management technique so that you can make a profit even after losing trades.

Losing trades are nothing but an oppurtunity to learn new things about the Forex trading industry. Consider it as a blessing. Try to identify your weakness and strength since it will help you to make a better decision at complex market conditions. Learn to take steps like smart investors as it will help you to become a profitable trader.

You lose money even when you are not trading

Remember the common saying “time is money”? In Forex, this is true because even if you are not placing your trades, you are still losing money. If we get into deep of this concept, it will be easier for you to understand how not placing our trades can still cost us money.

Generally, the people have a belief that the more time we spent on something, we can become better and we have a successful future. This is why people want to keep their children at schools even if they cannot have a good house. They know it is costly but the longer they can keep their children at work, the more eligible they will be for the world. A child who has only passed grade four will not get the same job as a child who has passed the high school. That is why we keep them long in the school for a better future. In Forex, when you are spending time but doing nothing, this does not bring the same future.

Education and trading are two different things. If you are only sitting at your chair and not placing trades, the analysis that you are making and the Forex trading routine that you have made will be useless. Even if you place your trades in a demo account, you may still lose money but you will learn something from the trades. If you are spending your time but not doing or learning anything, not practicing your strategy, you are only wasting your time that is literally money. You could have spent the time in overtime work and gotten the some salary for the month.

As we have told you the idea was not easy, we believe you have got the sense what we wanted to tell you. Do not think your money is safe when you are not trading. Every time you are thinking about Forex, you are losing money if you are not doing anything useful. If you have invested your money, know that you cannot withdraw the full amount because the broker has many charges. This will help you to inspire you to develop and use your time well to make a profit. Even if you trade in a demo account, that will also be good for your career.