Archive for August 2018

5 Ideas on Small Businesses

business idea

business idea

Nowadays, with technology and the rising costs of living, a nine-to-five job is not enough. You may be a father who wants to supplement his income to cover your household needs or a mother who wants to help out with the expenses while juggling the responsibilities of running a household and raising the children. You may be someone who is finally fed up with the demands of a lifeless office job and would want to create a business you can completely control.

The possibilities are endless for people who want to start their own business whether at home or at a rented place. There are many things you should consider to make this endeavor a success that you envisioned it to be.

Of course, you cannot start your business without careful planning. You will invest not only money but also time and effort. Think hard of your expertise and your goal since the type of business you will establish needs to be tailored to these two. By planning everything, you will minimize mistakes along the way and make sure that your efforts won?t go to waste.

Having accomplished that, you can then proceed finding the perfect ideas that will jump-start your business. Here are some small-business ideas you can take inspiration from.

For the Handyman

Your skills in fixing and tinkering can surely be put to use with a practical business like construction and mechanics. Working on cars is not really a job when you love what you?re doing.

There are also non mainstream skills like woodcraft and fixing and picking locks. The latter may sound strange, but you?ll be surprised to know how many businesses want to secure the safety of their premises by and having an expert install their locks and testing their strength. You must have a lot of practice with your set of lockpicking tools if you are into this as a hobby, so you need not worry about learning the ropes and the like.

For the Fashion Guru

Fashion keeps on changing and returning, a cycle that many understand. It is one business that will always have room for opportunity for those who make fashion a part of their lives. You must have received more compliments than you can remember about your fashion choices.

You can put this talent into good use if you open a physical shop for handpicked clothes. But if you want to minimize the operational cost, you can always create an online clothing shop. After all, the internet age makes it not only possible but also extremely easy to operate while at home.

For the Cooking Expert

You can do magic in the kitchen and your family and friends always rave about your cooking prowess. Why not set up a catering business? You can start small. Try to cater for small events in your town or city. Through that, you won?t only earn much-needed income. You also get to do something you love and showcase your talent.

For the Artist in You

Arts and crafts have always been your forte. You can reap the enjoyment of designing and creating while earning on the side. Do-it-yourself decors for the home or events can be your target.

Weddings, birthdays, and any celebrations often need decorations like a statement wall art or flowers for the wedding aisle. This is something doable with the right amount of planning and wise decisions like setting up an online shop and finding affordable craft supplies, making sure that you are within budget.

For the Marketing Professional

Digital marketing is a reality nowadays. Most businesses are turning to the online world to sell and promote their products and services. But you know most small businesses are short of hand and can really use a marketing agency that can take care of producing quality content for their websites and social media pages.

Why not channel your skills and experience as a marketing professional into this by creating a small digital marketing agency? It won?t need a lot of capital either. Use your connections and your portfolio to acquire clients who will be happy to work with you. You can propose to provide the content and strategy?two of the most important things when it comes to online marketing.

For those who are worried about the cost and effort in operating the business, it?s ideal to consider setting up an online shop instead of a physical store. This way, you won?t need to pay for rent since you can set your business at home. It will also free your budget for additional hands who can help you run the business, smoothly and efficiently.

Starting a business can be both daunting and exciting. If you can take the risk and navigate through the initial process, there?s no reason for your small business not to work.

4 Hidden Benefits of a Side Hustle

4 Hidden Benefits of a Side Hustle

4 Hidden Benefits of a Side HustleIf you are motivated to make extra money, you?ve probably thought about picking up a side hustle. You might take this path in order to get out of debt. Or, you may simply want to save up as much money as possible for the future.

It should go without saying that the main motivation for most people to pick up a side hustle is to make additional money beyond what they earn on their normal paycheck. That motivation is good enough. But, you?ll be happy to learn that there are some additional hidden benefits of adding a side hustle to your schedule. We?ll review four of those hidden benefits below.

You might have fun!

Lost in the concern about making money is the fact that you may actually enjoy your side hustle on a personal level. For example, if you decide to teach lessons in something that you are good at ? like playing a musical instrument or a particular sport ? you may get great enjoyment out of giving those lessons.

This is the best case, as you will be earning money for your effort. However, it really won?t feel like work. As you consider possible side hustle options, this is a key point to keep in mind. Find something you enjoy and you will be far more likely to stick with it over the long run.

Stay Busy

People tend to spend money unnecessarily when they have idle time. If you are trying to pick up a side hustle in order to increase your earnings, you may find that you wind up reducing your expenses at the same time.

Between your regular job and your side hustle work, there simply won?t be much time left in the day to shop and spend money in a wasteful manner. Of course, there will always be things you need to buy. But, cutting back on the other stuff can do wonders for your budget.

It May Grow

This is one of the reasons that so many people today are interested in the idea of a side hustle. What starts out as a side gig could potentially turn into a full-time opportunity if you are successful.

Again, this is a point to keep in mind when you are trying to decide what your side hustle is going to be. If you?d like to be able to grow this new stream of income moving forward, pick something that you believe has the potential to develop with time and hard work.

Learn a New Skill

You don?t necessarily have to take advantage of an existing talent in order to get started with a side hustle. Instead, you could pick out something that you?ve always wanted to learn and make that your target.

Sure, you?ll probably have to spend some time learning before you can actually make money. But, that educational process should be seen as a chance to better yourself and expand your skills moving forward.


Why do you side hustle? What benefits have you seen besides more money?


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5 Ways to Invest for Retirement

Retirement saving

Retirement saving

For many people, retirement is a time to stop using an alarm clock, stop rushing out of the door to beat the rush hour traffic, and stop showing up at the office. It?s a time to restructure your life and focus on the things you would like to do.

But before you can do what you like for the rest of your life, such as go to exotic places, meet interesting people, and do fun things, you have to save enough to take care of all your needs. You will have to take an active role in your retirement as you won?t be able to rely on Social Security alone. Unless you live with extreme frugality, it will not be able to keep pace with the cost of living.

If you find that you’re not saving enough for your retirement, you’re not alone. Millions of people in this country find it hard to set aside enough money to retire well. There always appears to be more month than money. Fortunately, you can always invest as a way to fund your retirement.

Five types of investments that can help you prepare for a comfortable retirement is to invest in stocks, bonds, annuities, real estate, or index funds.

1. Invest in the stock market: When you invest in the stock market, you can purchase and sell stocks on either physical or virtual exchanges. While the best-known exchange in the United States is the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), there are 15 other exchanges you could use. It?s always a good idea to leverage the power of technology when investing in this financial market, as it makes it much easier to keep track of a large volume of market changes. Services such as Stock Earnings?allow you to do your research by using proprietary software to predict price movements after companies have released their earnings reports.

2. Invest in the bond market:?The bond market allows you to do over the counter trading through two organized electronic trading networks. One is the primary market. In this market, borrowers sell debt securities to lenders. The other is the secondary market. In this market, investors can purchase and sell debt securities that were previously issued.

3. Invest in annuities:?One way to make sure that you receive money in your retirement is through an income annuity. This is an annuity contract that will pay you income after you have initiated a policy. Once you fund an income annuity, it?s immediately annuitized. How much you receive will depend on whether you have a fixed or a variable investment.

?4. Invest in rental properties:?When you invest in residential or commercial property, you can rent it out. Tenants will pay you for the right to occupy or use your property. ?You will also be able to get tax deductions on your mortgage interest and on property depreciation.

5. Invest in index funds:?The nice thing about index funds is that you have a fairly good idea about what you are getting because you know what aspect of the market that you are tracking. If your funds are tied to the S&P 500, for instance, then you know that your return will match how much the S&P rises next year. You enjoy a reasonable level of stability because you know that your index funds will neither outperform nor underperform the market.

Some Investment Guidelines

The first thing you have to do is decide where you would like to invest. You could choose one or more of these investment markets. Next, you must learn how the market you?ve chosen works and how to keep track of changes. Finally, you must decide whether you want to use a brokerage to do the work for you or to learn how to trade for yourself. Generally speaking, even if you decide to use a managed investment, you should take some classes to understand the financial markets you?re investing in. This will give you a better understanding of how well the brokerage is serving you.

When you retire, you suddenly have a lot of free time for such things as vacations and hobbies, but you also suddenly have a lower income. If your income is too low to support your lifestyle or pay for emergencies like medical bills, a reverse mortgage can help. It is a retiree loan that will allow you to receive money from a reverse loan lending agency on a regular basis. It differs from a regular mortgage because you will have the freedom to pay it back long in the future, as long as you stay in your home. No immediate or scheduled bills will be sent to you from the lender. When you do leave your home, the balance will be due, but you or your family members can choose to pay it or let the home be sold, with the lender keeping sale profits up to the balance amount.

In closing, it?s always a good idea to invest in more than one financial market, as this will help you manage any market crashes. A diversified portfolio will help you avoid any unexpected surprises. For instance, if you have stocks and rental property, then if all your stocks fail over the course of a few months, you will still be earning an income from your tenants paying their monthly rent.

4 Surprising Ways Anger Can Cost You Money

4 Surprising Ways Anger Can Cost You Money

4 Surprising Ways Anger Can Cost You MoneyMost people would agree that anger is not a good emotion. Sure, it is natural as a human being to get angry from time to time, but keeping that anger under control is an important part of fitting in well in society.

While controlling your anger ? and getting help for it if necessary ? is important mostly for the health of your relationships and your own personal health, being able to manage your anger can also improve your financial life. Let?s take a look at four surprising ways in which getting angry can cost you money.

Impulsive Purchases

You should already know that impulsive purchases are a quick way to do serious damage to your budget. Anytime you spend a meaningful amount of money, you should think that decision through before you actually make the purchase. Unfortunately, if you let your anger get the best of you, rational thinking might not be on your side.

For instance, let?s say you are angry about a something you had recently purchased which suddenly stopped working. In your anger, you decide to just buy a new model from a different brand right away, rather than seeing if you can have the original item replaced for free. Letting go of your anger and thinking clearly could have saved you money in such a situation.

Breaking Things

If you allow your anger to manifest in physical ways ? such as throwing things in your home or other locations ? you may need to spend money in order to replace the things that you?ve broken. Obviously, it would be best to get this problem under control for non-monetary reasons, but there is a financial issue to be considered here as well.

Trying to Keep Up

This one might not be as obvious as the first two, but it is just as important. Some people feel the need to do what they can to keep up with their friends, neighbors, or relatives in terms of physical possessions.

So, for instance, you might wind up buying an expensive car to keep up with a neighbor, rather than buying a more affordable model. If you notice yourself feeling angry about the things those around you have purchased, do your best to calm down and keep things in perspective.

Are those possessions really that important? Probably not. Saving money and keeping your financial life on track is more important than owning fancy items.

Looking for Satisfaction

The last point on our list is an indirection connection, but you should watch for it if you tend to let your anger get the better of you from time to time. When angry, do you tend to spend more money than when you are feeling content?

If you aren?t sure of the answer to that question, think about it carefully and try to spot any patterns in your spending. Some people will make purchases as a way to seek satisfaction when they are feeling angry, but that is likely to be a losing strategy. Instead, do what you can to get to the bottom of your anger issues and leave spending money out of it.


Have you ever let anger cost you money? How else have your emotions affected your finances?


Photo courtesy of: composita

Retirement Planning Made Simple



One interesting aspect of retirement that you?ll discover is that you?ll find your typical week hard to describe to your adult children. Although it might appear you?re being evasive when asked about how your week is going, that?s not the case.

On Monday, you might be packing for an exotic vacation you?re planning on taking next week. On Tuesday, you may simply stay home all day watching Netflix.? On Wednesday, you may be surfing the net to learn how to how to cook Indian Curry. And on Thursday, you might be playing against a grandmaster at a simultaneous exhibition with your friends at the chess club.? As for Friday, you?re not quite sure what you might do.

Here are four things you can do to make sure that you plan well for a great retirement:

  1. Life Insurance

You may want to consider buying life insurance to ensure that your family is taken care of when you are no longer here. The earlier you start, the larger the sum available for your children and grandchildren. For instance, over a twenty-year term, paying less than a $100 a month, your death benefit may be around a million dollars.

In many ways, your beneficiaries may feel as if they?ve received a lottery windfall. Interestingly enough, like a lottery, it?s not necessary that your beneficiaries receive a lump-sum payment. If you?re worried that they might not be able to handle a financial windfall, then you can arrange for the money to be paid in installments as an annuity.

Generally speaking, your beneficiaries could receive the money quickly. It usually takes between 30 to 60 days to process a claim, although if all your documents are in order, they may receive it sooner.

When buying life insurance, it?s important to research the best life insurance companies. PolicyZip is a good source for information on life insurance because have a lot of in-depth reviews.

  1. Spend Less

The first step to getting a grip on your spending habits is to create a budget. You may be spending more than you need on your daily and monthly expenses.

Maybe, you?re paying too much car insurance for an old car and could get a lower rate.

Maybe, you?ll save money by buying your own groceries rather than relying on a grocery delivery service.

Maybe, you could enjoy cheaper, healthier meals by preparing your own meals for lunch instead of going to the nearest deli.

  1. Save More

When you determine where your money is going then you can start to figure out how to reallocate your money for savings and investment.

The biggest challenge you might face when it comes to savings is that you never get around to it. Although you’re well aware that you should pay yourself first, you may find it hard to park some of your money after you receive your paycheck. You may always find other things that you would rather do with your money.

One way to overcome procrastination is to automate your savings so that the money comes straight out of your paycheck before you even see it.

Better still, you could also automate your investments with a brokerage so that the money that comes out of your savings is automatically invested in a low-risk fund.

  1. Streamline your Money Management

One of the most formidable obstacles to managing your money better is that you are using paper. By going paperless, digitizing all your financial information, you can access whatever documents you need quickly and easily.

When you have a large volume of files and folders stored in numerous file cabinets, it can be hard to locate your documents and difficult to keep track of your banking and brokerage accounts.

In conclusion, one way of following through on planning your retirement is to imagine your life when you?re not working. Thinking about all the things you can do when you?ve managed your finances for retirement will motivate you to do what you need to budget, save, and invest.