Saturday, September 30, 2017

Understanding The Real Cost Of Getting An Education Today

education costs
Parents dream of the day when their child will finish school and head off to university to train for their careers. However, the cost of attending colleges these days has begun to skyrocket, and so it’s vital that everyone understands the full implications of that strategy. Sure, everyone wants their kids to get the best job possible when they mature, but most folks have no idea how much that dream is going to cost. In an attempt to set the record straight, this post contains all the information you could need if your little ones plan to go to university during the next couple of years. Make sure you don’t overlook anything, or you might have some nasty surprises. 

Course Fees

Depending on the nature of the course the individual wants to take, they will have to pay a lot of money to their chosen college. Sometimes it can take up to five years to achieve a passing grade, and that means most students leave university with thousands of dollars worth of debt according to USA Today. Considering that, it’s vital that all parents start saving for their loved one’s education as early as possible. While it’s possible to get some loans to cover the cost, that just leaves the student with substantial debts before they’ve even started working. For the best savings, be sure to:
  • Consider an array of universities
  • Start saving early
Student Loans

There are two types of student loan that most people take out. The first one is often to cover the cost of course fees, and so the money goes straight to the college. In most instances, young people don’t have to start making repayments until they find a job. However, the second type of loan is for books and other equipment the individuals might require, and the payments will begin immediately. It’s critical that everyone takes a look at their options when they finally achieve their qualifications. Refinancing deals like those available from and similar online portals could help families to save a small fortune in the long run. That is especially the case if the current debt incurs high rates of interest.

Living Expenses

It’s impossible to ignore the fact that students need to keep a roof over their heads and food in their bellies while dealing with their debt. During a five-year degree course, those costs are going to add up. For that reason, everyone must use some common sense when it comes to paying for those expenses. Students should try to find part-time jobs that will assist in reducing the burden on their parent’s bank balances. On average, estimates suggest that people at a university will spend between $15,000 and $25,000 on living expenses during their three or five years at college. You’ve got to find that money from somewhere!

With a bit of luck, people who read this article carefully should now have a better idea about the real cost of getting an education today. Use the advice to ensure you don’t overlook anything essential and nothing stands in the way of your child’s future. There are scholarships and schemes for young people who don’t come from wealthy backgrounds. Maybe you should take a look at some of those?

Friday, September 29, 2017

How to Set Yourself up for Financial Independence

money freedom
Leaving University and getting ready for a life of adult responsibilities is often one of the most disconcerting and stressful feelings that a young person can experience. Sure, you’ve got your qualification — but do you even know what you want to do? Or what if you’ve made a terrible mistake and should have loaded up a backpack and found your calling in some exotic land instead?

And what about paying the bills? What can you do to set yourself up for financial independence now that it’s all on you to make ends meet?

Well, here are a few tips that might help.

Get work as soon as you can and don’t be afraid to move on

At the start of your working life, one of the most important things to do is to get a job as quickly as possible and start building your CV. Ideally this job would be in your target field, but it’s not the end of the world if it isn’t.

Getting into a job as soon as possible will help you start acquiring and saving money immediately, and it will also help to remove your fears and misconceptions about the working world.

Once you’re positioned in a job role, don’t be afraid to begin looking immediately for better work and sending out applications. Even if you’re completely content with your current position, it can be worthwhile keeping an eye on what else is out there.

Start a side hustle

For every day-job, there’s a career dream, hobby, or passion which can be tapped into.

Setting up a side hustle is one of the best ways of not only keeping yourself entertained and creating a sense of empowerment in your working life, but also of making some supplementary income at the same time.

Examples of side hustles that you can explore could include things like affiliate marketing or freelance web design, or even just a blog or YouTube channel where you get to share your interests and insights with the world.

Of course, a more traditional startup company would tick the right boxes as well.

Invest in a budgeting system

Making money is only part of the equation — and it could be argued that it’s not even the major part of the equation. If you want to be financially independent, it’s essential that you get a handle on how money flows in and out of your life.

How do you budget your income? How do you plan your savings? How do you manage and track your repayments to loan companies like

There are many books out there on different budgeting systems, and many digital budgeting tools and services such as and YNAB. Pick a system and get started using it.

Avoid impulse spending

“Impulse spending” refers to spending money on things that you don’t need, because you feel an emotional pull to do so.

Examples could be buying a flashy car to appear high-status, or getting the latest bit of gimmicky fitness equipment because it “looks cool”. Impulse spending is a major drain on many people’s finances. Try keep yourself free of this trap.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

4 Questions You Need To Ask Yourself Before You Turn 60

retirement savings
For the first forty or so years of your life, you will no doubt come into contact with the term “retirement” a lot. However, for the most part, it will go in one ear and out of the other. It will affect you in the same way news of climate change will affect you - it enough to make you raise your eyebrows and start putting cardboard in the recycling bin, but it isn’t pressing enough to make you change your ways entirely.

Well, that fabled thing called retirement is now knocking and your door and so it is time accept the financial decisions you have made up to this point. We’re not saying you can’t change certain things and make a little bit more of a difference to your circumstance, of course you can. However, it is time to start planning your retirement lifestyle based on your current financial situation. It is time to face the music, not live on a hope and a prayer.

You see, most people retire in their sixties. You don’t have to, but most do. That is why we have pulled together a list of factors that you need to consider. So, without further ado, here are the things you need the financial considerations you need to make before you hit the big six-oh.

How Long Are You Going To Work For?

This is the single biggest decision you need to make for the simple fact choosing when to quit work is going to affect your financial security more than anything else. This is when you will wave goodbye to your income and start relying on your savings. Of course, it isn’t just when to quit that you need to consider. It is what sort of retirement lifestyle you are going to lead? How much more could you save if you stayed working until 70? The health benefits of staying connected to the people you work with. And will you quit totally, or will your retirement involve some work?

What Help Are You Going To Have?

This may seem like an odd question, but retirement is expensive and retirement can be, well, unsafe for a few reasons, not least of all your health. That is why you need to know what level of help there is going to be. According to, you need to consider hiring a financial power of attorney while you are still mentally sound, someone that can make the right financial decision should you become unable. You need to know what help you will have should you become unable to live independently and whether you will receive help from your children in some way or have to pay for care yourself. This part of the debate should also include seeking help from a financial planner, someone that can talk you through your current financial situation and how to make the most out of your finances in retirement. We called it help, but a lot of it could be labeled advice, which gives it the positive spin it deserves.

When Will You Take Social Security?

The importance of this benefit cannot be stressed enough. In fact, choosing when to take your Social Security benefits is only second to deciding on when to retire because it will have one of the biggest financial implications during your retirement. To stress how important this source of income is, for one in four recipients it is their only form of income after retirement. That is why it so important you squeeze the most you can out of it, which is why timing is so crucial as you will see from this article on What we mean is, for every year you delay triggering this benefit after turning 62, your monthly income rises from 6% to 8%. Of course, you have to start collecting it when you turn 70, meaning you will get the best deal possible should you manage to hold on until then. This may not be possible or ideal, but it is worth knowing when it comes to making a decision. 

How Much Income Will You Be Guaranteed?

This is an immensely important question to ask yourself. If Social Security is your only source of income then the math won’t take long. However, if you have multiple sources of income then a) count yourself lucky and b) make sure you know exactly how much you will be receiving each month. The same goes for your spouse - the final sum should be your total household’s monthly income. To do this, register with the Social Security Administration so that you can be sure you know what you are getting, speak to the HR department at your current employment - as well as the HR department at any former employers - and ask for a statement relating to your pension benefits. Once you know what you are getting each month you will be able to make an informed decision on whether you want or need to work longer, what sort of lifestyle you could lead with what you have and whether or not you need to scale back.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

It's Not All About The Plastic Fantastic

money plastic cards
When you want or need to buy a big ticket item, it can be hard to be patient while you wait for your savings to stack up to a high enough level. With the range of credit options available it can be easy to buy now and pay later. While credit has got a bad name in recent years with irresponsible lenders giving thousands of pounds worth of credit to any Joe Bloggs on the street, there are still some excellent opportunities to be had if you’re financially astute.

Your Flexible Friend

You may immediately be drawn to the credit card. As long as you have a strong credit score, the chances are that you’ll be able to have plenty of credit at your disposal within seven to ten days of applying. If you want that swanky new kitchen, it can appear more within your reach than ever. However, the lure of the ease of credit with cards comes at a cost, namely interest. Many credit cards have a rate of over 20% APR. This isn’t a problem if you’re paying your balance off in full every month, but if you require longer to shift the debt, then alternatives need to be found.

Sell Your Stuff

This may sound a tad simplistic but selling your unwanted items online using auction sites or classifieds like can add significantly to your funds. If you’re aching to purchase your new SUV, you’ve been saving for what seems like an eternity and you only need a little more in the coffers to get you over the finish line, there might not be any need to get yourself into any debt.

If you haven’t used an item for twelve months, don’t get all sentimental and just sell it. Those box sets of DVDs that have been languishing at the back of your cupboard will be wanted by somebody out there. As you see the money build up, you will be even more motivated to keep topping up your savings.

The Final Stretch

If you’re finding it tough to raise all of the funds needed for your trip abroad, your loft extension or your new set of wheels, don’t worry. You should congratulate yourself for saving up the amount that you have so far. All is not lost. Consider heading to where you’ll be taken through a personal loan application process step by step. Loans often have lower rates of interest than credit cards and are over a set term, so you’ll know exactly when you’ll be debt free once again.

However you end up financing your big-ticket item, make sure you remain sensible and don’t allow that new designer sofa to seduce you into taking out more debt than you can afford to repay. Live within your means and use credit to your advantage. Assess every option available to you and don’t always rely on plastic that isn’t always so fantastic.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Uh Oh, Watch Out For These Business Financial Woes

business finance worries
Are you worried about issues with money in your business? Perhaps you should be because there are various ways that you can experience difficulties with finances when running a company. That could involve dwindling profits, issues with legality and perhaps even theft. The good news is that all these troubles can be easily avoided if you make the right decisions early on. Let’s start by thinking about theft. 

Protecting Against Theft

There’s various ways to protect your business against theft and ensure that your finances stay healthy. One possibility might be to invest in high tech, state of the art security software. Don’t forget that most of what you do involving finances will be online these days and as such software is going to be more important than physical forms of security. You might think that if you’re running a small business a theft isn’t as likely, but that’s nonsense. Theft could still be a serious problem, and you will certainly need to have the right security in place on your systems before you even think about accepting sales and purchases.

The other way you can protect your business against theft is with insurance. There are special forms of insurance on the market right now for any issue with a company that was caused by a theft or a hack on your systems. You might think that the cost of insuring your company like this won’t be worth it in the short run but in the long run it will. If your business stays on the market for more than five years, we guarantee at some point you will deal with a theft or at least the threat of the hack. It’s best to be fully insured for this possibility.

Avoiding Legal Issues

You might stumble onto legal, financial issues in your business for a variety of reasons. Though arguably the most common and the one that catches everyone out is tax. Are you paying the right amount of tax on your business? Are you sure? If you’re not, you need to check this and do what you can to ensure that your tax payments are accurate. Your IRS weapon is going to be a financial tax attorney. They’ll help ensure that if you have underpaid on tax, you won’t be facing a massive penalty. They can also help ensure that it never happens again by getting your books in order. 

This isn’t the only way a financial advisor can help you. They might also be able to advise you on where to spend your money so that it isn’t wasted. By wasting your money in business, you will be putting your company in a difficult situation. Wastage leads to debt and debt can ultimately bring a business crashing down. 

Trouble With Clients

Of course, you can find that an issue with finance has been caused by your clients. In certain cases, clients may decide to pay the money they owe to you later rather than straight away. Usually, this occurs when businesses are providing a bulk order. Rather than pay straight away, the buyer waits until they sell the order on for a profit. Obviously, this can take months where the original company never sees a penny of profit. As such, it can put a business in an extremely difficult situation. The solution that you need to look into here is invoice factoring. With invoice factoring, you can make sure that invoices are sold off, and you get the money that you are owed straight away. You might be worried about this turning otherwise healthy business relationships sour. It’s a possibility, and that’s why you should also make sure you choose your clients and customers carefully. You need to make sure that you only deal with people who are known for paying the money they are owed quickly, without delay. 

If you are a B2B company, it’s worth looking at reviews online. Get a feel for the transactions that businesses have had with other people and make sure that you are aware of how reliable they have been in the past. Be advised that if clients or suppliers break contracts with you or fail to uphold them, you could lose thousands. Most SMEs will not be able to afford this type of loss. 

As you can see, there are a variety of financial issues that can impact your business. However, by taking the right steps, the negative ramifications of these type of issues can typically be avoided completely, allowing you to ensure that you do keep your company in a financially healthy position.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Unconventional Ways to Make Your Fortune

money fortune
There are a million different ways in which people try and make their fortune, ranging from playing high-stakes poker to going up the corporate ladder with the dream of one day becoming CEO.

Each approach has some pros and cons, though none are guaranteed to get you to your ultimate goal destination.

Here are a few unlikely, fun, and unconventional ways that you might be able to use to make your fortune.

Move to a country with more favourable conditions

Call up an experienced immigration lawyer — it might be that the problem isn’t what you’re doing, but where you’re doing it.

While an international move is never something to be taken likely, it remains true that certain countries are simply more friendly to particular fields and career choices than others. This can manifest in a variety of ways — from better tax rates, to less regulated industry, or a substantially larger community of people interested in the sorts of services you offer.

Become an internet commentator

It’s hard to argue against the fact that, in the current day and age, traditional information outlets are in full retreat before the onslaught of citizen-journalists, commentators and pundits provided a platform by the internet and social media.

Entertainment vloggers like Pewdiepie have made millions from YouTube views and ad revenue, while an entire new class of current affairs commentators, from all sides of the political spectrum, have sprung up on the site. Many of this new breed of pundits have followings and viewership numbers larger than some traditional media companies.

If you’re the kind of person with something to say and the will to say it, why not monetize your soapbox by having a go at being a social media commentator?

If enough people like you, they may even finance you through websites like Patreon and buy any products that you later put out.

Invent something cutting edge and crowdfund it

Shows like “Dragon’s Den” present us with hopeful inventors who’ve finally decided to bring their creations to the world. As is common in reality TV, these bold men and women often leave in tears with their dreams stamped out by the would-be investors.

But what if the only mistake many of them were making was to go to big-business before the public?

In the digital age, a wide range of crowdfunding platforms have popped up, with perhaps the best known being Kickstarter. The idea here is simple — you pitch your idea to the public and pledge certain rewards to your backers. If people like it, they’ll invest in your dream — sometimes several times over.

If you’ve got an invention in you, waiting to get out, why not take it to the public square and see who’s interested in it?

Take your strangest, most niche passion and monetise it

Are you part of a fringe internet community of people who knit woolly hats for dolphins on Tuesdays? If so, you may be in a good position to make a profit off your unusual passion.

There’s a simple rule in business that the more niche a market is, the less likely it is to have been taken over by the big corporations. Although your particular hobby-community may not be big enough for a big business to feel it worth the investment, you, as an individual might find that there are just enough potential customers there for you to work with.

If you’ve got a niche interest, think of something that you, as a fan, would like to see in that community. Then, go out and provide it to your fellow oddballs.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Profits Through Education - Investing In Yourself For Business Success

success in business
The world of business is a thriving but competitive place. Some business leaders are born to it; others need to work to become successful. Whether you’re venturing into business for the first time or you’re looking to improve the way you do things, education can benefit you to become a stronger business owner and generate profit. Here is a lowdown of some of the things you can learn to help you become more successful in managing your business’s finances.

Business finance basics

Many people who start a business do so with an idea, rather than a sound knowledge of running a business. If you’ve never had to manage a business’ finances before, it’s going to be a learning curve to get your head around it. There are some great financial literacy tools for small business owners that can help you to learn the ins and outs of managing your business’ finances and stop your business falling into the financial pitfalls that can halt small businesses in their tracks. While you can hire an accountant to look after your company’s money, as a business owner it’s important that you also develop a sound knowledge of business finance.

Supply chain management

Supply chain management is another area that can be crucial for business owners to learn, particularly small retail business owners who might not yet be able to bring these skills into the team. An online supply chain management course will teach you to create an agile supply chain strategy that will help you to learn the ins and outs of your business’ logistics - helping you to drive your business to success. The skills learned as part of a supply chain management course will help you to analyze your finances and make better decisions for your business, helping you to grow and play to your strengths. Learning while working is a great way to broaden your skills and can be done at any stage in your career to help you improve it. 


Marketing is vital for business success. Not all business owners will have encountered marketing before, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be learned. Marketing is constantly changing and is an area where people are willing and able to share their knowledge online, meaning you can learn the essentials of marketing for free. Finding out more about digital marketing practices and being able to create a successful marketing strategy will benefit your business and help you connect with your target market. Marketing is essential for driving profits, and seeing which strategies generate the biggest leads can help you continue to build up the success of your business. 

Nearly 8 out of 10 new business will fail, in large part due to the inexperience of business owners. To ensure your business stands the best chance of success, take it upon yourself to learn to manage your business’ finances and become a more confident business owner. They say that knowledge is power, and the more knowledge you have - the more powerful your business can be. You’re never too old to start learning, so start your business education today.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Should You Buy That Holiday Home?

buying apartments
Coming into money and knowing how to cope with the newfound wealth are not easy. You could have come into money through inheritance or you could have been gifted a large amount by a relative. Either way, knowing what to do with it is difficult. You will find advice pouring in from all angles about how to invest the money rather than fritter it away. There is advice like this here that tells you all about investing in the stock market and how to manage your money through the rise and fall of the tides there. There are articles that you can find here that float around to tell you the volatility of precious metals as an investment, as opposed to other investments out there. Knowing where to put your money after coming into sudden wealth is overwhelming, but the one investment that people don’t tend to talk much about is the investment in property.

Paying off any debts you have is a good start before you invest in any property. You can’t hope to get a mortgage at the best rate if you have any debt hanging over your head. Once you’ve sorted your debts and invest a little in yourself, you can look ahead and see what is there for you in terms of buying a home of your own. Some like to go down the buy-to-let track, which you read more about in this article. Others like to invest in a home that they can pay off quickly. Then there is the chance you already own your home and would like to invest in another. Here’s where it can get quite exciting! Investments are something that offer a big return, and if you want to invest in another property you can expect to be able to earn some money back off of it. Property is a tangible investment, meaning it’s not going into stocks where you can’t see how it works for you. You can see it and use it and decorate it as much as you like to make it worth more money. If you don’t want to put money into another home in the same place you are in, why not look into international property?

Buying a holiday home is often on the bucket list of those who have the cash to afford mortgages on more than one property. To be able to go between a home you have in your town and close to your job, and then have another you can slide into at any time of the year is a luxury that most cannot manage. Websites such as can detail properties and costs for homes to invest in in the furthest reaches of the world. To be able to invest in property like that is a privilege, but it will also take a lot of research on your part. Taxes, laws, how often you can get out there to see how your home is fairing are all things you need to consider. Investing in property abroad does, however, have its benefits. Far flung places to visit become far more affordable if you have a home that you own right there, plus, when you aren’t using it you can rent it out and allow it to earn money for you! With the birth of websites like AirBNB, holiday homes abroad are becoming a home away from home for most and if you can earn money from your holiday home, then it’s an investment worth looking into, right?

Investing in international real estate is something that all property developers look into from time to time, but even those out there who have never invested in property abroad before can do it. Property often doesn’t cost a lot to invest in, despite being able to control such a large asset. The one good thing about property is that as places become more popular, the value of the property rises and you get more out of it. People will always need somewhere to live, so property is a useful asset to have in your portfolio. There are some fantastic opportunities to grow wealth outside the country you are living in, but you have to know where to look to get the best advice from the right people. It can seem far cheaper to invest in property abroad than at home, depending on where you look. There is a surge in demand for property and if you look into private accommodation for your vacations, then you will know how popular vacation rentals are in comparison to hotels and package deals. There are some huge advantages to investing abroad in real estate, and we’ve got them for you below:

You Have Control. When you own a home abroad, you are already aware of the laws and rules surrounding what you can and cannot do with your home. You can develop the land you’ve purchased (with permission, of course), invest in the home and upgrade it, advertise it for rent during high season and even sell it on when you want to invest again elsewhere. The control that you have over your investment with property is far easier to hang onto as opposed to precious metals or other investments that aren’t as stable as a property is. The other positive here is that you can work to your own schedule and not someone else’s. Investing abroad may mean you need to look into management companies to check in on it from time to time when you aren’t in the country, so make sure you use a reputable service.

New Currency. Being able to generate a good cash flow in another currency is going to add to your portfolio as an investor. Managing another currency isn’t always the easiest to do, but being able to appreciate other currencies that you may not have much experience of can only mean other companies view you as a serious investor. If you plan to buy and sell property around the world in more than one location, this is a very positive thing for you!

Independence. Unlike other investments, property is a hard asset. This means that it has a value beyond printed money and it’s something that makes you independent from the stock market and other investment opportunities. Once you’ve bought a new property, you can do what you like with it and if you choose to just use it yourself, it’s still worth money when you decide to go ahead and sell it. It doesn’t matter what currency around you is doing, because you will always have something there that’s yours.

It’s Useful. If you buy a property in a remote, up and coming area rather than the centre of a bustling city or town, you may be wondering how you can make money from it. The answer? Land. Land that you buy can be used for agriculture or even forestry while you wait for the right season can help you gain an income. You don’t just have to rely on tourism, either, because as long as you are investing in the property you can rely on the land to work for you!

It’s Fun. Lastly, one of the best reasons to invest in property? It’s fun! You can decorate, renovate and upgrade as you see fit. Like a living version of The Sims, the house is yours to do with what you will – although this hasn’t got the same cheats available! You can use it as a personal vacation home during the year, develop it as a retreat or even offer it out as a property on sites like this one. When you do decide to sell the home, you can gain a lot from it from all the changes you have made over the years.

Property experts can always advise on the best property hotspots out there for you so that you can invest in the right places. The markets, just like where you live, will rise and fall depending on the demand at the time but you can play to that demand. You’re able to find the best bargains on property when the demand is low, meaning that when it peaks and you rent the home out, you will gain far more than you could expect. Managing a property overseas will always come with a language barrier, so before you rent out your property start interviewing bilingual property agents to work with so that you don’t have that issue.

Buying abroad doesn’t have to be difficult, as long as you have done the right research you can avoid any serious issues. Don’t forget, you must pay tax on any rent you receive from your holiday home, so make sure you know the local laws and register yourself appropriately. Property is an adventure and you could make it your future with the right amount of money and the right area.

Friday, September 22, 2017

8 Out 10 New Businesses Fail, But Why?

work for business
If you aren’t aware, Forbes has a statistic which says that 80% of startups fail within the first year. For entrepreneurs, it’s a daunting task trying to be apart of the 20%. However, it isn’t an impossible target to hit as long as you know why new companies fail. Once you have the knowledge, it’s a lot easier to steer the organisation in a new direction. 

Below, then, are the main reasons eight out of ten startups fail and what you can do to be different. Good luck.

#1: No Love Or Passion

There is an attitude in the industry that is killing new businesses. It’s the need to make money at any available opportunity. As a result, entrepreneurs get into sectors in which they have zero knowledge. If they do get past the initial hurdle of a lack of info, there is the passion factor. A person who doesn’t love the work won’t put their heart and soul into keeping the firm alive. At some point, the fact that the money isn’t rolling through the door will cause them to quit. To avoid this, try and take an interest in the company. Whether it’s a genuine love or you learn to love it, there needs to be something which keeps the magic alive. 

#2: Underestimate The Budget

A friend who is a peer tells you the cost of starting a company. As soon as the figure leaves he/she’s lips, you think you can do it for less. There isn’t a businessman or woman alive who doesn’t believe that they can cut costs and stay in the black. So, when it comes to the budget, the coffers are dangerously low. Of course, in the end, a shortage of revenue is the ultimate nail in the coffin as new companies don’t turn a profit. At least, they don’t for the first six to twelve months. Always add an extra 10% on top of your budget to ensure hidden costs don’t cause a shock.

#3: They Aren’t Lawyer-Friendly

The firm doesn’t need an attorney, right? Let’s face it – you’re a small fish in a small pond. A legal team isn't necessary for because the chances of legal action are small, or so you think. In truth, a startup needs everything from a personal injury attorney to a business lawyer. For one thing, lawsuits come out of the blue and from every angle. Not only will the competition use them to bleed the firm dry, but employees will file too. Also, setting the business up wrong is a terrible way to start. If someone sues, you might be liable depending on the type of business. Lawyers cost money yet save a fortune in the long run.

#4: Mismanagement 

Sorry, but the boss is the person to blame in this circumstance. Owners think they know everything, but the opposite is true. The people who aren’t flexible and open to ideas are the ones who fail. From outsourcing to save money and increase standards to delegating power, a boss has to lead by example. Otherwise, the entire company will suffer. 

The above have one thing in common – you. Ultimately, the boss is the secret to success.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

How To Keep Costs Down During Your Divorce

money seperation
Divorce is an incredibly difficult experience that no one ever wants to go through. However, that doesn’t take away from the fact that 42% of all marriages end in divorce, which is almost half of them. With a one in two chance of your happily ever after ending all too soon, you need to be prepared for the worst. Divorces are messy, but more than that, they are expensive, and sometimes this is an expense that you simply can’t afford. If you are about to get divorced and need to save some cash, or just want some information to prepare you for the financial roller coaster should the worst ever happen, then follow the steps below.

Use Attorneys Wisely

An attorney, such as from Strickland, Agner & Associates, is almost always needed when you’re going through divorce proceedings. They are especially required if you and your spouse are divorcing on bad terms, have children together, or share a lot of marital assets. Attorneys can help you to get the settlement that you believe you deserve, but that settlement comes at a cost. It’s no secret that attorneys can get very expensive, so you’ll want to use yours wisely. Don’t pay for them to do simple tasks that you can do yourself, such as send out mail, or answer a question that you would easily be able to find on Google. Time is money, so don’t waste yours by using theirs.


If you and your spouse ended your marriage on good terms, then you may be able to work out all the finances without having to involve any attorneys. Look online or speak to someone at your local courthouse and see if they have papers that self-represented parties can fill out, and schedule your court your court appearance for once the legal paperwork is completed. All you need to do is sit down with your ex-partner and go through all of your finances and assets and agree on who gets what. You will also need to decide who your children and pets (if you happen to have any) are going to stay with and work out visiting days and times for the other parent.

Be Prepared To Negotiate

When emotions are running high, it may cause you to do or say things that you wouldn’t necessarily do or say in a more calm state. Saying that you’re “going to take [your partner] for everything [they’ve] got” is just one example. A judge is never going to give you “everything”, regardless of what your spouse has done, and this will just cause the court case to drag on, costing everyone time and money. Instead, you need to be prepared to negotiate. Think of the things that are really important to you, and say that if you can have that thing, then you’re fine with your partner having another thing that is important to them, but not so much to you. This will make court proceedings go much quicker.

Divorces are hard, stressful, and tiring, so I hope that this advice will help to save you some cash and make your life a little easier.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Business Pitfalls You Might Want To Avoid

business support
Running a business is no easy thing to do, and I think we can all agree on that notion. But, while there are always things that can go right, there are business pitfalls any entrepreneur will want to avoid. Being involved in every aspect of running a business can often mean that you end up spreading yourself thinly across every avenue you need to go down. Which is why these issues within your business can take a hold so suddenly. I thought I would share with you some of the common business pitfalls and how you can avoid them.

Legal troubles within the business

Issues can arise within a business that can be of a legal nature and many of which cannot be avoided. While, of course, it can mean that you have different aspects of the issue to fight, it certainly doesn’t mean the end. This is when an appeal attorney can really help you out. Enabling you to ensure that you do all that you can to resolve any legal issues within your business that you may be faced with. 

Invoices not being paid on time

Cashflow and finances are a huge problem for businesses, so it is so important to ensure that you get your invoices paid on time. Of course, many businesses offer a thirty-day window for payments, but this can sometimes leave a business short on funds. There are companies that will buy off the invoices for you, so this could be something you may want to explore if you find yourself struggling with finances and invoicing.

Not advertising in the right way

Marketing and advertising is a key aspect of any business strategy, so getting it right is essential. One huge common pitfall any business can face would be either not having the right strategy in place or focusing on the wrong sorts of advertising. It is all well and good posting to your social media, but if you don’t publish at the right time or engage with your audience, it can be a pointless task.

Not having the right team in place

It is always essential to make sure you have the right team in place. These people, after all, are at the forefront of your business. They could be front your stores or greeting clients in the office, or simply they may be answering the phones. But these people are the face of your business, so it is vital for you to get the decision right when it comes to hiring the right team. Staff turnover can be quite a high cost for any business to overcome. 

Risk management

Finally, risk management can be a huge business pitfall you most certainly will want to avoid. It is a case of identifying them and ensuring that the risk is easily identified and a solution is found to resolve the issue before it becomes a problem to your business or worst still a customer. The last thing you want is to create your own business pitfall to overcome.

I hope that this helps you become more aware of some of the issues your business could face.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Keeping Up With The Jones’: Financially Supporting Your Lifestyle

money residence
Everyone is different. We all have our personal preferences and interests, and we all like to lead different lifestyles. Whether you like to keep things simple, or spend big, you have to ensure that your finances can support the life that you want to lead; no matter how much that costs. Because being financially secure is so important in life. For this reason, you have to not only be financially transparent and honest with yourself, but you have to be proactive with keeping your finances organized too. So let’s take a look at how you can go about doing that.

Shopping Around

The first thing you can do to ensure that you’re able to stay safe with your finances, is to shop around. No matter what it is that you’re looking to purchase. From buying groceries to buying a new car, you should always compare prices. It’s one thing to spend your money how you choose, on the lifestyle that you choose, but you should always ensure that you’re getting the best price for what it is you’re buying. And when you can save on the small stuff, you have more to spend on the big stuff.

Earning More

From here, you’re going to want to think about trying to maximize the money you make in the best ways that you can. To do this, you might like to think about the ways you can earn more money. It’s not always easy to land a job that pays better than what you’re earning now, but there are ways that you can get money back, cut costs, and top up your income here and there. From selling your stuff to earning online, look into the different ways to can make some extra cash.

Saving Where You Can

Then, you’re also going to want to think about saving some money whenever you can. Whether you want to live that simple life, or go big, savings can help. Not only can you have some money tucked behind you for when you might need it, but you can also ensure that you’re putting some money away for things that you may want or need later on in life.

Choosing Smartly

And just like you need to shop around when you’re deciding to buy certain things, you need to make sure that you put a lot of thought into some of your bigger purchases. Because when you want to lead a certain lifestyle, there are bigger payments that you make for things like apartments, cars, vacations and the like. But you need to ensure that you choose the right options carefully.

Spending What You Have

And finally, you should always try and do what you can to only spend money that you have, and nothing more. When you are trying to keep up with others, or lead the lifestyle that you love, it’s tempting to get everything on credit. But you should really try to keep within your means and only spend what you have so that you can avoid getting into debt and paying extreme interest rates.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Keeping Financially Secure (When Life Wants To Do Otherwise!)

lock your finances
There are times in our lives when we could very much do with disposable income, not least, your twenties when you are a social butterfly, wanting to be here, there, and everywhere and need an infinite well of finances to support your social life. At this point, we don't think much of being financially secure, as long as there is a roof over our heads and we can just about pay the bills. But as life continues it can be harder to become secure in a financial sense, and here are two of those big life-changing moments, and how to keep financially secure during these tough and wonderful times.

Having A Baby

Regardless of whatever order you do it in, some people prefer to get married before having a baby, the impact of a child on your outgoings, is much bigger than you would ever think. Not to be so negative about it, but the cost of a child now, from birth to the age of 18, in America, can range between $169,000 to nearly $400,000, depending on your income. While having a baby is one of the most wonderful things in life, the expenses mean a lot more forward planning. But remember you've got roughly 6 to 9 months to build up a good balance in your bank account. And while it's important to build up funds for everybody in the family, you also need to think about purchasing a life insurance policy. Saving for a baby can be difficult depending on your financial circumstances, but remember, where there is a will, there is a way, and by this point, your instinct to provide will kick in. And always remember, there are plenty of ways to earn money online so you can provide moral support to your pregnant partner at home while still earning some money in your spare time. You can look at sites like to get an idea of what other ways there are to earn money on the side of your main money-spinner.

Buying A House

This is something you can do to provide an extra layer of security. While you can pay money towards renting, there are unforeseen costs in both. At least with owning your own house or apartment, it is yours, and there is no interference in terms of that dreaded 30 days’ notice to vacate. The important thing if you are thinking about buying a home is to make sure that your credit score is up to scratch, as well as making sure that you are reliable in other aspects. Your credit score is arguably the most important parts of looking reliable, especially in the eyes of the banks, and there are plenty of websites like to give you some additional hints and tips on repairing your credit score if you are concerned. The one thing to take away from this if you are thinking about buying a house is to minimize your debts as much as you can before going to the bank. This means paying off credit cards, looking at your lifestyle and outgoings, and making sure that everything is up to speed.

These two instances are the backbone of modern adulthood, and so think about how to provide security, not just for your loved ones, but for yourself, it's all about preparing for these big moments in life, which means making sure you are reliable in the eyes of the bank. Whether trying to support your family or buy a house, we do need to borrow on occasion, but we can also find ways of building up our bank accounts.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

5 Secrets That Allow Insurance Companies To Keep Your Money

insure your firm
Don’t get us wrong, using insurance companies is crucial when it comes to managing your own financial risk. In fact, paying for a surprise disaster out of the funds in your own dwindling bank account. In that sense, insurance companies are worth it. But that is about as far as our love affair with insurance companies go because their main concern is business, not you; it is profit not your settlement package. What’s more, the tactics of keeping your money are about as sinister as they come as most insurance companies keep their ways of doing business in the dark. 

That’s right, there are secrets that no insurance company wants you to know about when it comes to your personal injury claim, and it is those secrets we are about to cast a light on so that you can get the settlement you deserve should you ever have to make a claim. 

From now on, make sure you get the money you deserve, not the leftovers from their profits. 

Secret #1: Insurance Adjusters Are Not On Your Side

This is one of those things that you need to understand from the get-go because the adjusters that you face off with are paid employees of the insurance company. What’s more, in the same way Liam Neeson’s character in Taken was a specialist in badassery, these adjusters are specialists in negotiation, and they are supported by experienced lawyers that know the law better than you know the alphabet. But here is the part where alarm bells need to start ringing because the most immediate role of the adjuster is to stop you hiring a personal injury lawyer or attorney so that you are more likely to settle faster and for the least amount of money possible. With this in mind, your best form of defence is to do exactly what they don’t want you to, and that is hiring a personal injury lawyer. 

Secret #2: Insurance Companies Are Scared Of Experienced Attorneys

Of course, they are. The more experienced, skilled and ruthless your attorney is the more money they are probably going to have to pay you for the simple fact they won’t be able to pull any amount of wool over your attorney’s eyes. This isn’t about making the insurance company shiver, though. This is about protecting yourself and your rights and coming out of this process with a settlement that is fair, which is exactly what an attorney will aim to achieve. Let’s say you were bitten by an illegal breed of dog or had an accident while working on a construction site; you probably have no idea how much your claim is worth, and that ignorance is what insurance companies prey on by offering you a lowball payout while telling you this is the best offer you’ll get. Hire an experienced attorney, however, and they will know of similar cases, how much those victims got in their settlement case and how much a jury of twelve people would be willing to agree on. Basically, an experienced attorney will know how much your case is worth, and they will help you get the compensation you deserve. 

Secret #3: The Recorded Statement

You know that employee of the insurance company we mentioned earlier, Ms Insurance Adjuster, well she is going to try and get a recorded statement from you that they will then use to reduce the value of your claim down the line. Please, for the love of whoever you believe in, don’t buy into this. Don’t give any recorded statements to any adjusters. Don’t buy into the soft dulcet tones of the adjuster when they phone you up and don’t indulge their request for you to guess about the facts relating to the accident you were involved in. Like we said, they are going to use this information against you in any way they can. It is their job. It is how they impress their bosses, acquire bonuses and get promotions. To them, it is just their business but, to you, this is your life, and that is a distinction you need to remember if you are going to stop them keeping the money you are entitled to. 

Secret #4: They Want You To Be Brave When You Visit The Doctor

They want you to be brave and you want to appear brave, which makes the moment you first visit a doctor a very tough one to get right. To put it to you bluntly, this is not the time for heroics, bravery or a show of strength. This is a time of honesty because you need to tell your doctor every detail you can. The headaches you are getting, the broken bones, the inability to sleep and your saw pinky finger. It doesn’t matter how little the things are that are bothering you, they are important to your case. They are going to legitimise your claims and prove you have been consistent with your statements. You will find most insurance companies will try and make it look like you are exaggerating your injuries - or making them up altogether - and that is where your doctor’s notes will support your argument. Validity is important. So, in the same way you should never make up an injury, you should never downplay one either. You never know what a small injury could turn into in the long run. It could become the most serious concern of all.

Secret #5: They Want To Rush You

The reason why insurance companies want to rush your settlement through is that it is in their favour. It is their favour for you to accept a settlement before you’ve hired an attorney. It is in the favour for you to agree to a settlement before you know the full extent of your injuries. The problem is, for most victims, time is against them. It could be the accident has stopped them from working, or they think they need to claim quickly due to the statute of limitations. However, rushing a settlement is always a bad idea. In fact, we recommend you wait until your medical treatment has been completed, or a doctor has a good understanding of the extent of your injuries. It is also worth noting that most states have a basic statute of limitations that last two years. In any case, the best thing you can do to protect yourself is to hire an experienced attorney.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

How To 'Adult' With Money

mature finance
Being an adult isn’t easy, suddenly you have to know how to do a million and one things that you weren’t taught in school. For a while you’re in that horrible stage where you are an adult, having to understand the adult world yet you can’t buy a beer. But worry not - here are some brief explanations on how to get your head around some money situations you are going to find yourself in over the coming years.


Schools really should cover this in class. Because doing your own taxes isn’t something that comes naturally to anyone. More than 43.6 million Americans filed their own taxes in 2013, and the figure has been steadily rising. How did they learn to do it? The internet. Like everything in this day and age, the web holds all the answers to your questions - and some answers you really didn’t need to know. lays out what taxes are and why they are so important. Basically ‘tax’ is a percentage of your income which goes back to the government. It pays for public and emergency services.


Applying for a loan can be a foreign concept and make you feel like you can’t even understand your own language anymore. After you have double checked you’re in the right country, break the information down. Often websites will have a frequently asked section, and banks will have people on hand to explain things to you. Online forms should be designed to be as straightforward as possible as there is no one with you to explain them. There are many different loans from student to personal, and they all come with their own interest rates and contractual commitments. Before applying for a loan, check out sites like (if you’re looking for a personal loan) to figure out if you are getting the best deal.


You might have done this throughout college, or you might have touched on it with your parents. And starting young is always the best. If you start budgeting and keeping track of your money when you only have your phone bill and your Netflix subscription, it becomes a lot easier when you have to start adding on more and more things. Think about it like sliding into the pool rather than jumping into the deep end. Budgeting templates and tools are out there to help you to get started, have thousands of templates where you just fill in the relevant areas, whereas others help you to build one from scratch.


Opening an account at the bank is easier than ever before. With online banking, all you have to is click a few buttons. But just opening a savings account or a cash ISA isn’t enough - you need to do the research. You want a high-interest savings account, but a low-interest overdraft. Go into different banks and see what they can offer before opening anything new.

Friday, September 15, 2017

The Smart Way To Protect Your Business Financially

insure your business to protect
One thing you want to do when you’ve got a business is keep it financially secure from anything that could attack it. Luckily, there are steps you can take to protect your business from such woes, and in this article is going to tell you exactly how.

Credit cards

Taking out a credit card for your business might be wise in protecting your business financially because it will give you the reassurance that if something goes wrong with a machine or item that you need to use in day to day service, then you will be able to replace it with ease and carry on with business as normal.

There are also many perks that come with owning a credit card like cash bonuses when you’ve spent a certain amount in one bulk. Depending on the bank that you take your credit card out with, you may even be able to gain perks for business like travelling costs.


Making sure that you and all of your staff are safe within the workplace is imperative to protecting your business financially. If you’re not following regulations and a member of staff injures themselves at work, they could go down the route of personal injury lawsuits which in turn, could result in you losing out on a lot of money.

Not only is it important to follow guidelines to protect you from being sued, but keeping you and your staff away from harm will ensure that you’re all being as productive as possible.


Much alike safety, ensuring that you and your staff have sufficient training to do your job is definitely needed. Did you know, that a member of staff could sue you for any injury they obtain from a machine that they’ve not been trained how to use? That is of course, if you insisted they use the machine.

To ensure that business doesn’t have to shut, a good idea might be to send a few members of staff off for training at one time, so that you can keep the business open and not lose out on any revenue.

Providing your staff with training such as first aid will not only be useful in any workplace, but it will give them extra skills 


No matter what size your business is, you should be considering getting insurance for your company. A lot of people make the mistake of thinking that insurance is another unnecessary cost, but in the long run the small amounts you will pay each month may become worth the money.

For example, if the premises that you’re working from is burgled, you will want to be able to replace anything that went missing and get back to business as soon as possible to prevent any further loss of money. Being insured will allow you to do this. Not only that, yourself and staff members will be insured too in case there are any work injuries.

Getting taxes right

A word that pretty much everyone hates hearing: tax. Unfortunately, we are all liable to pay tax on our profits and earnings, so make sure that you’re correctly paying your taxes each month. If you’re confused on what you’re supposed to be paying, do some research on what your country expects you to pay and when. If you find their rules and regulations, save them to your computer so that you can look back on it if and when needed.

If you fail to pay taxes and are caught out, you could be landed with a major fine and also the reputation of your business will be tarnished. 

Fair employment terms

Ensuring that your employment terms for your staff are fair, and more importantly legal is something else that you need to think about. Before even considering hiring anyone to work for you, make sure you’re clued up on what the minimum wage is that you will need to be paying.

You will also need to think about working hours. What time of the day will you need to have staff attending to gain the largest profits? Remember though, that you will need to be fair with how many breaks you’re allowing your staff, especially if they are doing a particularly long shift.

Did you know, that in the US employers are not obligated to provide paid annual leave for their staff? 72% of private employers choose to give their staff paid leave each year. That’s not to say that members of staff aren’t allowed any leave, it’s just that it’s not paid. To make your job position more attractive, consider allowing paid annual leave for your staff.

A great rule to remember is that if you can keep your staff happy, then they will work harder; therefore generating more profit. A happier person works better than an unhappy person, so the fairer you are to your staff, the more you will gain from it.

Stick to a plan

If you haven’t already, it might be worth making a plan for your business. Within this plan will be goals that you set for yourself, and where you want to be in twelve months time. Here’s an example:

1. Beat 2016’s profit take by at least 5%.
2. Bring out a new product before Christmas of 2017.
3. Promote a member of staff to be a senior.
4. Improve quality of customer service.
5. Renew everyone’s training.
6. Try and be under budget when it comes to supplies.

Using a simple list of goals to reach before a certain deadline will keep you on track within your business. Try to make sure that all of your goals are financially orientated so that you can make sure that you’re protecting your business from financial losses. Writing up a list of goals for members of staff will also have the same effect.

Following these 7 smart ideas will be sure to protect you and your business from any financial woes. Remember to shop smart, and also sometimes spending money will benefit your business in the long run. Good luck with your business venture!

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Blunders That Could Cost You Your Business

money business accident
We mean it when we say ‘cost’ because usually if a business does close down, it’s going to happen due to an issue with finances. It’s possible that the financial issue in question is a lawsuit or maybe a business loss. It might even be that your business simply isn’t making the level of profit it needs to if it is going to stay active and open on the market. So, what mistakes are we talking about that could bring your business crashing down around you?

Big Trouble In A Little Office

A lawsuit is definitely going to be something that you need to watch out for in your business. Businesses across the country are hit with thousands of lawsuits every year, and most of these are personal injury claims. A personal injury lawsuit can regularly rack up a massive amount in damages, depending on the extent of the injury. Settlements have been known to range in the hundreds of thousands which may be nothing for a large corporation. For a small business, however, a fee like this could have a devastating effect. 

The best way to avoid a lawsuit like this is to do everything you can to keep your business safe and the environment a secure place to work for your office employees. Believe it or not, even the smallest thing can cause an injury in the office. For instance, you might find that your workers sue due to RSI. This can be caused due to long periods of typing without breaking. Similarly, it can be prevented by ensuring workers are taking five minutes breaks away from the computer.

Prepare For The Worst

You do need to make sure that you are preparing for the worst in your business and we’re specifically thinking about technology. Every business they days is in some way reliant on tech working effectively. If it breaks down or fails, it could cause massive problems for your company on the market. 

This issue can be resolved by ensuring that there is a backup in place. For instance, your company might be involved in transferring or storing sensitive data files for customers. This is certainly the case for any ecommerce business. The best way to backup your systems is a cloud server. That way if anything is lost due to a hack or a data error you can get everything you need back and ensure your company doesn’t crash and lose all your customers as well as your money.

Madness In Marketing

Finally, you need to think about how you market your business. There are lots of what are essentially get rich quick marketing campaigns online. These include promises from marketing agencies that can get your company to the top of the SERPs in a matter of days. You need to be aware that promotions like this are often blackhat SEO and as such the results will be short lived. Instead, you should be looking at long-term marketing solutions that can provide real benefits for your business. Otherwise, you’re not going to generate the level of profits you need to remain successful.

If you avoid these mistakes, you can dodge the blunders that will end your business and send you back to square one.