Sacred Guide To Choosing The Right Term Life Insurance

While planning to buy insurance, you have to think carefully about your families needs, their lifestyle, your current age, your budget, your gender, your current health, extraordinary and unforeseen expenses such as mortgage balloon payments, medical emergencies and the costs of sending your colour kids to college.

There is simply a lot to think about when assessing your insurance needs, and it’s often not easy to do so until you put it all down on paper. Buying any form of life insurance is a decision, which may affect you and your family for 30 years or more into the future and you certainly don’t want to just wing it. Below are several considerations to think about carefully when deciding upon the amount your family may need to live comfortably in the unfortunate situation where you may pass away.

Your age

Quite obviously, if you buy your term policy at age 25 and you are a healthy non-smoker, you’ll pay a lot less than if you are age 50 and have high blood pressure or other warning signs of congenital disease in the future.

Your gender

Women simply live longer than men, so you may need to stretch the amount of insurance your spouse and her children, if any, are expected to need by an extra 10 or 15 years if the insurance is purchased to protect your wife.

Your lifestyle

Here is often where the rubber meets the road. Assessing realistically what type of lifestyle the surviving spouse will have in the future. Do you live in a palatial home, regularly take exotic ski vacations or, as is often the case, do you live an excellent lifestyle but only because both you and your spouse work? It’s not often easy to talk about how your lifestyle would change if one of you passed away but it’s a necessary factor in choosing life insurance.

Budget vs lifestyle

Buying term life insurance is akin to buying a new pair of shoes. One size, colour, and style of shoe do not fit all. Another consideration is budget vs lifestyle. Are your finances stretched so that even a modest insurance premium seems to be a pinch? Imagine then the upheaval your spouse would undergo if you vastly underinsured or even skipped your life insurance needs entirely?

Your health

Assessing your health or the health of your spouse can also become a “come to Jesus moment.” Do you or your spouse smoke or are heavy drinkers? Do breast cancer, prostate cancer or strokes and heart attacks run in your family genetics? Do you have any dangerous hobbies such as paragliding, skiing, or do one or both of you ride to work on a motorcycle? These are all critical elements to help self-assess the risk of dying earlier in your life.

Changing family needs

Another thing to assess is the changing needs of your family. Did you just give birth to a child or adopt. Did you recently purchase a home and want to be sure that the house is paid for in the unfortunate result of you are passing? Did it only recently occur to you that your son or daughter will attend university and modern colleges are much more expensive than you thought? There are dozens of conditions that cause one to go reexamine their life insurance needs, so even if you have life insurance, periodically look at it with fresh eyes to see if your insurance needs an update.

Is my work coverage enough?

Many people work for companies that offer life insurance at a competitive group rate. So they sign up for it at age 23 or 24 and that’s the first and last time they look at it. And while having insurance through work is great, it’s quite frequently no longer enough for a worker who has since gotten married, had children, and he or his spouse has undergone a worsening health situation. As mentioned before, be sure to reexamine and reevaluate any life insurance policy you have frequently.

Simple Dollar’s Life Insurance Tips

Besides affordability, savvy insurance shoppers would be wise to consult an independent insurance agency regarding the time of payout in case of the passing of your loved one as well as an honest assessment of their insurability. Some insurance companies can take two or three years to pay out rather than doing so immediately, and others make any health risks either completely restrictive, or they make the insurance so unaffordable it’s simply a losing proposition. If you have any type of health risks, you want an honest assessment by a reputable insurance company.

A One-Stop Guide To Productive Invoice Financing

For those who may not know, invoice financing can be simply described as the financing of unpaid invoices which is to be paid within a short period of time. And what makes it very important is the fact that you won’t have to wait for it to be approved like you normally would when it comes to securing a loan from a bank or any other lending institutions.

So, apart from being fast as far as approval is concerned, there are other reasons why you need to consider invoice financing as part of your day to day business practices:

 

Invoice Financing Promotes Business Growth

If you happen to be the sole owner of a startup and would love for your business to grow at an exponential rate, then one of the ways you hark this is through invoice financing. And how is this even possible you might ask? Well, it’s quite easy, to be honest.

For a business to grow on a steady, upward trend, it needs some good cash flow. And one way of having good cash flow is through invoice financing. With this kind of cash flow, it would be a tad easier for you to pay off all your suppliers and have everything operating smoothly.

You’ll also avoid the stress that comes with not having enough money to run your business and thus have enough time to operate optimally. Needless to say, this will end up increasing your productivity in the long run.

 

Only Make Payments When You Can

The main reason why you should consider practising invoice financing is that more often than not, there usually isn’t any pressure to pay back. This because it’s only payable when your clients have cleared the tab.

And so with the pressure of creditors knocking at your door after every couple of days gone, you can easily focus on what really matters, and that’s growing your business.

Apart from being spared from the stress that comes with fixed-term payments, you’ll always have the opportunity to sit back and enjoy the cash flow in your business since, well, you don’t have to make any payments until the clients clear it for you. Trust me, it doesn’t get any cooler than this!

 

You’ll Be More Comfortable in Taking Bigger Risks

Another reason why most startups are afraid to take bigger risks is simply that they don’t have the monetary resource of doing so. and as you know what the dictum says, ‘bigger risks equal bigger rewards’.

But thanks to invoice financing options, you can be encouraged to take that risk which, if backed up with the right kind of hard work, will most certainly end up in paying off big-time.

 

Invoice Financing Is Way Convenient

Long gone are the days when you had to leave your office and queue at a bank just so you can apply for a loan, which is highly likely to be rejected because you are a struggling startup. But with invoice financing, you won’t even have to leave the comfort of your office.

This is because you can do all the application online and have the money wired to your bank account. If you do this right, you can have your application approved in a matter of hours which is a far cry from the normal loans that might even take weeks or worse, months.

 

Eliminate The Likelihood of Accumulating Bad Debts

Nothing damages your business more than accumulating bad debts. Heck, even a single bad debt on your resume can scare off both the prospective clients as well as lenders. And that’ll be the beginning of your end as an entrepreneur.

But with invoice financing, the likelihood of accumulating bad debts is completely taken out of the equation. For instance, you’ll have the chance to have the balance cleared as soon as the clients make the necessary payments.

Also as mentioned earlier, it is quite important for you to take short term loans since you can really be sure about what will happen in the long run because fate takes twists and not all twists are good ones. It’s therefore safe for you to always be prepared.

 

Conclusion

After going through all the above mentioned financial benefits that are attached to invoice finance, it shouldn’t be that much of a problem securing one whenever the need arises. But if this ever happens, it would be a great idea for you to take your time and carry out in-depth research.

The last thing you want to do is getting a lender who doesn’t have your best interests at heart. And once you’ve found a great lender, then your next order of business should be choosing to finance the invoice with the highest urgency.

The others which aren’t on top of your list of priorities can wait for the right time since failure to finance them on time would do little to nothing as far as affecting your business is concerned.

The Best Merchant Card Machines for Small Businesses in the UK

In today’s complicated and developing business environment merchant card machines can help give your business that badly needed boost. For those who are wondering how these payment terminals achieve this, read on to find out more about how your business can profit with a PDQ machine.

Regardless of the size of your business, statistics have shown that merchant card machines can help increase your customer base by as much as 70 percent. Business has become more dynamic than ever before, and if businesses don’t upgrade to the usage of these machines, they fail to benefit from these transactions.

Let’s face it, this is a consumer’s market, and customers need ease of transactions, and large cash transactions are way too inconvenient. Here, we’ve outlined everything you need to accept card payments, including the best card machine options for small businesses in the UK:

How do I Accept Card Payments in My Small Business?

If you want to accept card payments, you’ll not only need a payment terminal – there’re other things you need to sort out first.

 

  • Merchant Account

 

The merchant account is a protected account where money from clients sits while the payment is approved. It’ll be provided by your payment service provider or bank and is a requirement for receiving card payments.

 

  • Payment Gateway

 

The payment gateway is the part of the chain that authorizes the payment. Your payment service provider or bank provides this together with your merchant account.

 

  • Card Machine

 

Lastly, you need the payment terminal. There’s a range of PDQ machine options for small businesses on the market, from inexpensive budget options to feature-heavy full point-of-sale systems.

The following is a roundup of the best merchant card machines for small business in the UK:

Top 5 Merchant Card Machines

Are you on the hunt for an affordable way to start accepting card payments? Then have a look at the following 5 merchant card machines:

 

  • iZettle Reader

 

iZettle is a well-liked card machine option for small businesses in the UK. This card reader is sleek, small, and is one of the most inexpensive options on the market.

Features

  • Battery life of up to eight hours
  • Accepts magnetic stripe, contactless and chip, and pin payments
  • 12-month warranty
  • Money deposited within 1-2 business days
  • Connects through Bluetooth with your tablet or smartphone
  • Free POS App
  • It’s incredibly fast.
  • You can send receipt through Email or SMS

 

  • PayPal Here

 

Though not as competitively rated as the iZettle payment terminal, it does benefit from integration with PayPal, one of the best online payment methods. If you already have a PayPal account set up for your business, this payment terminal might be a good option.

Features

  • Accept contactless and card payments with no monthly fees
  • Payments reach your PayPal almost instantly
  • Works with Android Pay and Apple Pay
  • A UK-based customer support team
  • No fixed contract
  • The machine is cheap

 

  • SumUp

 

Although SumUp may be less recognizable than the two previous options, it’s the most economical app-based card machine in the UK. SumUp is the best alternative to iZettle for businesses, but their current transaction fees are slightly higher.

Features

  • Lowest fixed fee: 1.69% per transaction
  • Very simple payment app
  • Accept all credit and debit cards
  • No fixed monthly costs
  • 100% online application with no paperwork and no contract
  • Allows Bluetooth connection and is compatible with Android and iOS phones and tablets

 

  • Square

 

This PDQ machine is the smallest, most lightweight card reader on this list. It’s literally a square-shaped plastic payment terminal that is white all over, but the technology makes it just as reliable as bigger card readers.

Features

  • The most comprehensive free app
  • Keyed-in payments possible
  • Accepts contactless cards, chip and PIN cards, and other mobile payments
  • Accept American Express, MasterCard and Visa
  • Comes with a free point-of-sale app
  • Can also be used to sell by phone, online and collect payments via invoices

 

  • WorldPay

 

WorldPay is the UK’s biggest card processing company and also offers an assortment of other PDQ machines and merchant services for both online and offline payment processing.

Features

  • Compatible with all iOS and Android devices
  • 24/7phone support
  • Fees depend on turnover and more
  • Accept payments over the phone or face-to-face
  • Issues receipts via SMS or email
  • Keypad comes with a 12-month warranty

What is the Cheapest Card Reader for Small Businesses in the UK?

The lowest priced card reader in the UK, in terms of upfront cost, is the iZettle reader which goes for £19 + VAT. It also offers very competitive card transaction fees (1.75% flat fee), but not the absolute lowest. To get that you either have to go SumUp (1.69% flat fee) or PayPal Here (as low as 1.00%).

Which is the Best Card Reader for Small Businesses in the UK?

While all of the 5 PDQ machines highlighted above are great and allow your small business to accept card payments, the iZettle card reader is perhaps the best choice. Not only is it the well recognized, but at just £19 + VAT it’s very cheap to try out. And they offer transparent pricing and among the most affordable fees.

Final Verdict

 

  • IZettle: Ideal if you just need a card reader.
  • Square: Ideal if you need more than just a payment terminal.
  • SumUp: perfect for getting started.
  • PayPal Here: Best if you need online integration with PayPal.
  • WorldPay: Best suited for businesses that need to accept phone payments or those who want to work with a recognized brand.

There is clearly a lot to process when it boils down to payment processing and card readers. Pat yourself on the back for making it this far; hopefully, you’re more confident about your knowledge of merchant card machines.

Ensure you’ve understood what each company charges for different transactions and what may be the ideal option for your business. Also, don’t ignore things like customer service repute. It’s a very competitive market, and you can make sure you get a payment terminal that can best help your small business flourish.

Golden Circle: The Backbone Of Investment

The History of Investing in Gold

Gold has earned a rich and valuable history throughout the world. Coins containing gold were first seen in 800 BC. The first pure gold coin came about 300 years later. The value of gold coins has continued to increase and is one of the best investments in the world.

The Value

Gold maintains value as time passes. You may purchase gold to preserve and pass on your wealth to future generations.

Inflation

When the cost of living goes up, gold is your ideal investment against inflation. As inflation rises, so does the price of gold. For fifty years, the price of gold has increased along with inflation.

Deflation

When prices drop, the economy is left with excessive debt and the growth of businesses slow down. This is referred to as deflation. This is what occurred in the 1930s during the Great Depression. You may already know prices dropped at this time, but the price of gold soared.

The Increasing Demand for Gold

In the past, the demand for gold increased due to the boost in emerging market economies. In a lot of different countries, this caused the cultures to intertwine with gold. This was when India became one of the nations with the largest consumption of gold. Gold became invaluable for many different markets such as jewellery. The biggest demand for gold in India is in October because this is the traditional Indian wedding season. One of the most traditional ways to save in China is by purchasing gold. This demand has never wavered.

Diversifying the Portfolio

The best way to diversify is with investments separate from each other. Throughout history, gold has not been correlated with other types of investments such as stocks. During the 1970s, stocks plummeted while gold soared. By the 2000s, you were most likely still purchasing gold. Gold can decrease the risk and volatility of your portfolio.

Geopolitical Uncertainty

Gold does not lose value during financial uncertainty. This is the reason gold is referred to as the crisis commodity. You probably see gold as being safe because it outperforms the vast majority of other investments. The current crisis in the European Union led to an increase in the price of gold. When government confidence declines, the price of gold goes up. This includes purchasing gold coins from Goldstackers.

The Supply of Gold

Since the 1990s, the majority of the gold supply has been coming from the global central banks selling gold bullion. You may be aware this source significantly slowed in 2008. Since 2000, there has also been a drop in the amount of gold produced by the mines. It can take as long as a decade for new mine production to begin. As the available supply of gold decreases, the value of gold increases. There are also more investors demanding gold. They now see gold as an investment class and safe commodity. This has further increased the demand for gold while reducing the amount available.

The Bottom Line about Gold Investments

You should always make gold a part of your diversified investment portfolio. The events causing paper investments to decline including stocks and bonds, trigger a rise in the price of gold. Over the long term, gold has always maintained the value. As time has passed, gold has been successfully used as a hedge against inflation. As major currencies have lost value, gold has remained steady. This is an investment you should strongly consider.

7 B2B Effective Growth Strategies on a Budget

Each business owner is on a never-ending hunt for improving growth strategies without spending a fortune. When it comes to growth, many experts focus on B2C companies. However, B2B growth strategies require as much attention as B2C.

The importance of constantly looking for new solutions can’t be overlooked. B2B companies must be open to new experiments to stay ahead of the competition. Exponential growth is often the goal. But can it be achievable while staying within a reasonable budget?

Let’s take a look at several growth strategies which won’t empty out the company’s bank account.

1. Creating Interactive Content

B2B marketing efforts involve engaging the customer just as B2C approaches do. Creating interactive content, which can catch the attention of a representative, is a highly useful method of getting conversion without exceeding the budget limits.

Interactive content creates a useful “fun” experience. For example, you could come up with a simple game, which checks the professionalism of your potential target audience. Professionals are always happy to test their skills. A quick and appealing test is likely to be shared and reposted.

2. Using Mobile Marketing

Plenty of things have been said about the importance of mobile marketing. However, many companies are still somewhat slow with the implementation.B2C has been taking advantage of the mobile approaches for years. B2B seems to be somewhat behind.

Mobile friendly websites, mobile app development, mobile-oriented promotional efforts are just the tip of the iceberg. According to experts at Miromind, mobile-oriented SEO solutions show impressive and fast results for B2B companies.

3. Taking Advantage of PPC Ads

 

While you may think that this method is more useful for B2C companies, it’s not true. Generating organic traffic to your website by taking advantage of PPC ads is an excellent strategy. It doesn’t require serious investments since you only pay for an actual client, who has a potential of converting.

While you are optimizing your website for SEO efforts, you can give the business a boost with posting PPC ads.

4. Considering Marketing Automation

These days, programmatic advertising is gaining momentum. By investing resources in automating your marketing process, you can cut the marketing team expenses and focus on other important matters.

Besides numerous marketing automation software available on the market today (some freebies are easy to find as well), you can look deeper into programmatic advertising and enjoy a “hands-free” promotional effort.

5. Listing On Third Party Review Sites

When you are asking clients for reviews on your website and reviewing your own products there, it creates useful content for your potential clients. However, being listed and reviewed on other websites can help you enjoy quick business growth due to increased visibility.

Influential review websites can bring you thousands of new potential clients every month. All you have to do is offer information about your company to these sites. Get listed on influential websites and make sure your profile is full and interesting.

6. Practicing Email Marketing

Email marketing is one of the key components of B2B business growth. A special approach is vital to catching the attention of the company representative. B2B email marketing requires a careful approach to checking email validity and creating proper calls to action.

With the right specialist taking care of email marketing efforts, the expenses can be kept to a minimum while the result may be impressive.

7. Exploiting Social Media

Many B2B companies opt out of social media marketing because they don’t quite understand which tone of voice they should use with their audiences. Sounding too professional is a risk since people usually use social media to relax. Sounding too relaxed is a risk as well since it may create the wrong impression about the company.

A simple way out is to ask the employees to use their social media accounts to promote your services. It’s that easy. A couple of seconds a day for reposting and sharing can lead to substantial conversions.

Effective B2B growth strategies are a reality even if you are on a tight budget. Use the above tips to choose the right approach.

UK Chancellor plans to wipe out high cost borrowing

In the Autumn budget plans, Phillip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, has announced plans to attempt to wipe out the dominance of the payday loan industry. He has announced that they will create a no-interest loan scheme in order to do this.

This scheme will be offered to over 3 million people who are on low incomes in the UK and is similar to one that was offered in Australia. As reported by the Australian Government, this programme officially helped 4 in 5 people to stop using payday lenders. The scheme will attempt to lower the cost of debts that people have accumulated as a result of borrowing from high-cost credit lenders. It will also aim to provide a much cheaper, more affordable substitute to payday lenders. Another objective of the scheme is to aid people in society from ending up in debts that they are unable and preventing them from turning to loan sharks to pay off the extortionate amounts that they might owe.

In order to get help with this project, and to ensure that it goes the best way possible, Phillip Hammond will aim to get support for this scheme, by teaming up with others. This support will come from debt charities, banks and other lenders.

Also in the Autumn Budget, The Treasury has said that in 2019 there will be a survey that will take place in order to test the likelihood of this scheme working as well as a pilot scheme to physically test how successful it will be before it actually occurs. As well as this, they have said that they will provide £2 million to help design these plans in order to try and entirely wipe out loan sharks which are often illegal.

Furthermore, grants will be provided to many entrepreneurs that are involved in the technology industry. This will act as an incentive for them to create cheaper, legitimate substitutes for people who are no longer willing to borrow from payday lenders. Another aim that Phillip Hammond has laid out, is to extend the amount of time given to customers when trying to settle their debts before creditors can take action against them. This is known as the ‘breathing period’ and Hammond plans to extend this from 6 weeks to 3 months.

This plan as set out in the Autumn Budget, also takes place after the recent shutdown of Wonga in August. They were the largest payday lender and after receiving huge amounts of critisicims for mis-selling loans to many customers, they went into administration. Another reason for the demise of Wonga, was due to the fact that in recent years there has been a huge number of claims for compensation that have been made against them.

Elsewhere, traditional short term loans have pivoted their loan proposition away from payday products to more personal loans, with lenders such as Cashfloat and MY JAR now offering loans repaid over 12 and 24 months. This should give customers more flexibility when repaying their loans through staggered repayments and alleviate the problems associated with high cost short term borrowing.

Payday loans have cost borrowers over 800 million pounds

According to recent statistics released by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) the UK’s finance regulator, people who had in total taken out £1.3 billion pounds in payday loans had to pay back a significant amount more than what they had borrowed. Of the £800 million borrowed in 2018, over £2 billion was repaid which includes interest rates and late fees.

The figures showed that the average loan that was taken out was £250, however the typical amount that borrowers would have to pay back would be significantly more than that. The figures stated that the average amount they had to repay was 65% more than the original sum, at £413. The extra amount paid by consumers was sometimes 100% more, which is worrying given the FCA’s price cap to avoid customers paying back double their borrowed amount.

In addition, in figures released by the Financial Conduct Authority over 5.4 million high cost, short term loans were taken out in the year up to the 30th of June 2018. People living in the North West of England had the highest uptake for these loans, with people living in Northern Ireland taking out the least – due to the popularity of credit unions in this part.

A large number of these borrowers who used these high cost facilities were of the younger age groups. Just higher than one third, 37%, of all borrowers were between the ages of 25-34. As well as this, around a third of all borrowers were tenants and just over a quarter still lived at home with their parents.

The Financial Conduct Authority have also stated that although the numbers of high cost, short term loans have increased since 2016, the numbers are significantly lower than the levels that we saw in 2013. This is due to the fact that regulation was brought in to put a cap on the cost of borrowing money and to limit the number of times payday lenders could roll over their loans.

A breed of new payday lenders has emerged which include those targeting bad credit customers and offer guarantors to provide extra security. Elsewhere, there has been the pivoting of lenders offering traditional payday loans to more flexible instalment loans repaid over 6,12 and 24 months. Over the next few years, we could see the payday product before obsolete and evolve into a more flexible, bespoke personal loan product.

Regulators have said that in general, the cost of borrowing is lower than in previous times when there was no cap on the cost of borrowing. The Financial Conduct Authority have been in charge of protecting consumer borrowing activities since 2014. The tighter regulation in the industry has seen some of the largest players in the UK leave due to increased costs or forced closure due to mis-selling high cost loans including Wonga, The Money Shop and Cash Genie.

Essentials for Any Growing Business

Every business usually sets out with the objective of experiencing steady growth. While some businesses grow more quickly than others, it is the only way to ensure your business survives in the long run. There are some fundamental things you can do to improve the chances of your business experiencing healthy growth. It usually means focusing on things that seem to be giving you the results that you need and expanding on that. There are essentials that seem to work for most successful businesses, but bear in mind every organization will need a different approach. If you’re interested in knowing what these essentials are, continue reading the below article.

Finance

It can’t be expressed enough how important keeping your books in order as a business is. If your business is healthy and experiencing steady growth, then you should have a stream of income coming in and going out. To effectively manage your business finances, track your expenses and develop a bookkeeping system that works for you. Here are a few tips for bookkeeping systems you could use.

DIY: If you can’t afford the services of a professional or want to reduce expenses, then you may have to DIY when it comes to bookkeeping. You can use software like Quickbooks or Wave to help you do all of the repetitive and detailed tasks.

Hire a Professional: If you can afford to, hire a professional to manage your accounts for you. Be sure that they have the certifications and experience needed to handle the job. In doing so, you should have peace of mind knowing your finances are in good hands.

Protection

Protecting your business is a must, especially as you can’t predict what’s going to happen in the future. When you aren’t prepared for any curveballs that are thrown at you, it could cripple your business. In light of this, here are two core ways that you can protect your company from outside threats.

Lawyer:  You should always have a trained and experienced lawyer at hand who can help you deal with any serious legal matters. They can also be useful when it comes to reviewing contracts and making sure you don’t agree to anything that could hurt your business later on. To find a business attorney, decide what you’re going to need them for and ask for a referral from partners or friends.

Insurance: Aside from getting a lawyer, insurance is another must for your business. There are several types of insurance you could get that range from protecting your assets to keeping your office space safe. If you have one or more automobiles, you should also get insurance for your vehicles as well. Look for the best price commercial auto insurance on the market and ensure you have the coverage you need.

Talent

Another essential for a growing business is talented employees. They are the people that make all of the magic happen and enable you to meet your targets. Periodically review your staff’s performance to check that they’re delivering to the highest standard and see where you can offer help or support. To find the right talent, ensure the job descriptions you put out are detailed enough and tap your employee networks as well. By doing so, you should be able to attract the right types of candidates. 

Business Integration

Business Integration refers to a strategic placement which aims at synchronizing the technology of information and market networking, as well as the business cultural cues and goals. It also focuses on how the technological advance is aligned with the business objectives and strategy. In essence, business integration refers to the reflection of the absorption and functional ability of IT. It is indeed an indispensable aspect of management. As a matter of fact, technology has become highly embedded in business, which further implies that successful business enterprises is currently taken as a domain for business leaders other than the resounded technology experts. With this in mind, Virgin group has embarked on integrated technology across the precinct of its business. As the business organization expands, there is a subsequent increase in challenges affecting management which should be streamlined with its subsequent growth. This move has engineered expansion through the Virgin enterprises, which has led to its unique competitive advantage and a sound rate of expansion. This paper will use the case of Branson business strategic placement in various levels of its analysis for case illustrations.

The management is faced with the challenge of establishing a concrete organizational structure which absorbs and promotes the intent of the organization at large. Indeed, sound organization structure frames up organizational controls as well as financial controls, which help it in implementing the strategic business activities. The controls also dictate and underpin the business performance with respect to their relationship with both the business structure and strategy.

As a matter of fact, the structure of an organization puts a framework of the organizational procedures, authority and controls in reporting rapport and the entire business management process. Indeed, it is the organizational controls that sets a framework for the implementation of the strategy and provides for the comparative exercise of the business goals and achievement. This helps in identifying the strategic resolutions that would ensure improvement from underperformance and thus a competitive advantage. In particular, Virgin group has been able to expand both locally and internationally to Australia among other business hubs of the world.

However, through the basic framework of business activities, the structure and strategies of the business are closely related. Indeed, the adoption of a particular strategy has a significant impact on the business structure that results. According to business research findings, organizations structure change often when the performance declines. Consequently, for the management to hold after the decline, it should modify the general structure in order to give room for restoration. This means that the organization must adopt positive structural changes that would enable it accommodate its respective business strategy. This is done following a stable research which unveils the need for such an action. Through a feasibility test of business performance in different fields, one enterprise diversifies across other profitable ventures within and without its area of specialization a profile taken by Virgin group.

In order to enhance the business performance through structural and strategic synchronization, the organization must adopt positive techniques in hiring and further development of employees. Business operating capital is essential for the success of any prospective venture. However, the growth for such capital is far much valuable and rather the root cause of expansion of the enterprise. For instance, Richard Branson’s Virgin Group is a case example that emerges from little capital investment to a huge chain of supply side business investment. To begin with, the business adoption of a broad structure was preceded by a constrained business structure. In essence, Branson began through the publication of a ‘student’ magazine which emitted a thorough exposition which gave rise to a chain of investment fronts.

In the tender investment stage, Branson’s Virgin operated at a small scale prospect while the management structure proved quite simple with the involvement of a limited number of personnel. This was an easy structure where strategic business engagement and implementation was easy to manipulate. However, the structure of the business was gradually changed following some of the expansion that followed the installation of the recording studio at his home in Oxford shire home. Consequently, this increased the output generation to millions of magazines and, therefore, necessitated a devised selling mechanism which saw the sales go worldwide. This also means that Branson must have recruited employees into the organization following the strategic expansion prospects which would see the structural transformation of the organization and graduation from a simple structure to a functional structure of the enterprise.

Through the structural transformation prior further establishment of chain business premises, Branson was also able to manipulate strategic placement that saw the establishment of the highly capital intensive business with the airlines contrasting sharply with the former investment in low capital investments of recordings. The financial control emanated mainly from the investment focus that aimed at expanding the business prospects through the established business strategy. In the attainment of a competitive business framework, it is also important for the recognition of a well established workers recruitment and retention in order to streamline the business objectives with the workers ability and proficiency.

Workers recruitment is also an essential function to consider during the adoption of certain business structure. Recruitment involves the identification process for prospective workers from the time of application for posts to the time of arrival of application to the organizations’ management. This followed by the selection process for the most acclaimed employee to join the organization’s taskforce. This also provides a chance for identification of fit workers for the sake of operation proficiency. Technological integration means that the organizational taskforce must be able to employ the contemporary technology. This also implies that the workers must be creative enough to sufficiently warrant the cognitive engagement in the operational aspect of the business as well as taking advantage of new insurgence of technology, which provides a sounding corporate culture and a competitive advantage as a result. For instance, Branson was acquitted to technology advancements. In the view of advancements in digital technologies, Branson expanded its retail outlets interest through the onset of online retailing following the advent of the Internet. A product of this intervention includes the Virgin money and the joint investment with the Norwich Union. Furthermore, Branson also took advantage of the cellular communications which further led to the establishment of Virgin Mobiles in collaboration with Deutsche Telekom.

The integrated business framework is a function of various factors. The implementation of basic organizations’ strategy works hand in hand with its formulation. Indeed, the structure and systems of an organization is mapped as the most influential and resolute sources of competitive advantage as well as the choice of a strategy. This implies that the capacity for the organization is quite essential in outlining and implementation of the strategic objectives as well as adopting sound structural adjustment in favor for enterprise development. However, across the entire framework of business integration, businesses have to have refined harmonization prospects of cooperation, specialization as well as coordination which would further provide a refined guide into selecting the best enterprise structure. Indeed, effective systems of business management are fundamentally anchored on tactful financial planning, and control as well as well acquitted human resource management practices through a strong team of management.

The success of management activities can also be dictated by the developed or the pre-existing policies which further defines the course of activities taken by the organization. The policies of undertaking the activities therein levels a guidance on the manner in which various activities need to be done for the organization to achieve its goals as per its prospective objectives. Furthermore, policies enhances consistency in the approach to various activities besides creating a conducive environment upon which the work is done and thus the effectiveness in execution of the various business strategies. For instance, Branson was able to establish and surface through the Virgin’s Cell enterprise due to the aspects of deregulations and privatization. Indeed this venture was enabled through the deregulation of telecommunications in Britain among other global players.

Furthermore, Branson brand exploitation was further enhanced through the privatization and deregulations that came about in 1980s and enabled Branson to acquire a rail Franchises which gave rise to the Virgin Rail in collaboration with stagecoach. This also means that Branson was able to identify the competitors in the field of investment and, therefore, strategic means of combating competition, which included the various collusions and collaborations that the enterprise established with competitors. In any business environment, competition is an aspect that can result to a failure if not checked with urgency. Consequently, for any business enterprises to succeed, it must lay fortified prospects of countering competitions while holding the industry constant and increasing its market share. Furthermore, loosened regulations also paved way for the Branson to open the Virgin Blue in Australia. These were strategic ventures that succeeded among other unsuccessful ventures such as attempts by Virgin group to operate the British National Lottery.

The process of instituting concise systems such as information systems also enhances the logical and timely flow of information which further enhances the performance of the business. This means that the report on daily operations and emergencies are essential in analyzing the performance of a strategy with a view of improving it and the realization of a complete circuit of business activities. This mean that report regarding the customers, operations, purveyors, workers as well as the financial report should be discreetly and timely availed for the business management purposes. This scenario enables the management to track and remit most optimal implementation initiatives as far as the daily operations and internal and external environment are concerned. This aspect also ensures that an organization is capable of identifying other prospective investment areas and evaluating the suitability of the latter.

In the light of the above, Virgin group was actively involved in analyzing structural information from across the globe. This ensured that the business identified new markets as well as business opportunities. Furthermore, the organizations’ initiative further enabled the tracking of highly competitive forces in the industry of interest and thus helping it define the optimal strategies to use in encroachment of the business. Through information sharing and remittal, Virgin was in a position to expand outside the UK between 1998 and 2011 through a series of replicated Virgin Ventures worldwide as well as new ventures. Finally, from the organizational structure, the business forms a legal agency upon which decision-making and the governance procedures are emphasized.

Finally, for any business enterprise to capture and manipulate the market, the essentials of providing distinct services such are mandatory. This is one of the aspects that enabled Branson’s Virgin Group to penetrate markets successfully through the provision of quality, competitive, and brilliant services to all clients. Indeed, communication between managers and the concept implementing personnel in an organization is a powerful tool as it provides for the effective analysis of the level of implementation particularly for the strategic controls. This also enables organizations to a formal assessment initiative which focuses on evaluating the progress of implementation of strategies besides providing the supplementary remedies that would inspire successful implementations thus fostering the business’ propensity to achieve its laid down objectives. A business venture that allows the interplay of both external factors is paramount in the attainment of a singled out success from the competitive advantage that results. This also implies that the social connectivity between the implementation taskforce and the management is highly emphasized.

How do you choose the right fire insurance policy for you

Fire insurance is of vital importance to the modern home. It is undeniably playing an imperative role by allowing you to mitigate or even cancel out your losses in case a fire should occur by securing a fire damage claim Los Angeles. There are several factors to consider when choosing a fire insurance policy. You have to do your due diligence by researching and expanding your search for the best viable options. Here are some tips and pointers on how you can choose the right fire insurance.

Take note of the right coverage.

The effectiveness of your fire insurance policy is measured by the coverage it has of your properties. Having a fire insurance policy means having indemnification in time of a loss. It is thus necessary to go with the right policy to make sure that you maximize this protection should tragedy strike.

If you own the house, it is a good idea to try to insure everything, meaning the house and everything inside it. When you are leasing a place, you should ensure the contents inside. If you own the entire building, have the structure valued for fire insurance as well.

To start the insurance process, take your time in listing all the items you own that have value. A clear concise list of all these items and their corresponding values give you a general sense on the kind of fire insurance policy that you should go for. This will speed up your negotiations with your insurance agent as well.

Should your house or properties be subject to an unfortunate fire incident, having the right coverage will allow you to rebuild more quickly by getting a substantial fire damage claim, Los Angeles, that matches the value that you have lost.

Get the highest deductible possible

A deductible means the amount you have to pay your insurance company until the you are eligible for insurance claim. For instance, if you value your property at a million dollars and the collectible is set at 250 thousand, you have to keep paying the premium up to that amount before insurance kicks in. If the total payments have reached the amount of 250 thousand, after a fire incident, the fire damage claim should be at a full million dollars meaning you are earning the extra 750 thousand. A higher deductible, insurance companies will allow you to pay a smaller premium and could save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

There are exceptions to these however. If you can afford it, you can choose a higher premium and a lower deductible. This would insure your property faster and earn your peace of mind immediately.

Check your fire policy exclusions

It is common place that there are instances where a fire policy will have exclusions to claims. These are of far fetched situations however. For example, most insurance claims in the US exclude events such as war or allied perils. If the fire comes out of these events, the fire insurance company can choose to reject any claims.

Foul play, including insurance company employees or not, automatically disqualifies you from any claims as well. You should be careful with your claims, as these kinds of actions cannot only reject your claims but can land you in a trial for a criminal offense as well.

As important it is to list all the property you have that have value, you should also make sure that you have taken into account the property you have that are not included in the fire policy plan. In a fire damage claim Los Angeles, you will not be able to get paid insurance from these items.

There are several reasons why properties are excluded from fire insurance claims. If an item is perishable, like food, plant ornaments and others, you will not be able to include them in your fire policy for obvious reason that their value degenerates immediately.

Lower your premium by adopting security measures.

Homeowners can have a propensity to act carelessly knowing that their home is insured. This, however is not going to be looked well upon by insurance companies. Insurance, for them, is a risky business. They may choose to increase the premium if they see a huge risk in approving your insurance policy.

Before having your house checked to get an offer from the insurance company. You should install all the necessary safety equipment such as fire alarms, sprinkler systems and smoke detectors. Owning fire hazards such unchecked wiring or improper placement of flammable materials can make your premium skyrocket. Make sure you run a thorough check of your entire home before the fire insurance agent comes. And do this at regular intervals should the insurance agent come to check again and for your own safety as well.

Compare fire insurance companies before deciding.

When choosing a fire insurance company, give a quick research on all the available options in your area before even sitting down with any one of their agents. You should list the categories by which you should rank your choices. Then you can start with talking to the agents of your chosen insurance companies. Have them give you a quotation so you can compare all of them one by one.

Review your policy at least once every year.

All of  the factors listed can change over time. For instance, you could negotiate to lower your premium by installing a better safety system. Your coverage may change as well based on new insurance laws passed. You should take note of all of these changes in your yearly review to insure that your fire insurance policy meets your requirements.

Always remember that owning an insurance means allowing yourself to be able to negate risks. If you keep this in mind when drafting your fire insurance policy, you can save you a ton of money and at the same time give you peace of mind. Never settle for anything less than what you think is your minimum requirement.

What Are Money Lenders Loan?

Moneylenders offer small personal loans for temporary period at high rates of interest. Specially, the dangers and refunds are high. There are numerous unalike kinds of moneylenders. Some provide small amount loans which are to be refunded over a number of days. Some provide heavy sum of money with high interest rate. Others may give credits on furniture or electrical goods. Moneylenders don’t count for your good or bad credit history. They even give money to the stakers who frequently get into a debt group. However numerous countries are governed by the Money Lenders Acts of specific states:

Refund and interest Rates: Moneylenders will gather money from you in cash by stretching out at your doorstep and you will have to tolerate their collection charge. If you cannot give the collection price, you require refunding (principal + interest) at the moneylender’s office. The moneylender should hold his identity card, so that he has the consent to call you for refund. If you are home-like, they can also call you anytime, but you must provide it in writing beforehand. Also, they don’t have the authorization to contact you on Sundays or any of the bank holidays or get in touch with your family members without your agreement.

Results of Non Payment: If you miss to refund the loan amount, get in touch with your moneylender as soon as possible. If you fail to meet payments, the moneylender cannot charge any sort of punishment and cannot offer you another loan to pay the initial loan. If the matter is still not sorted out between you and moneylender, you can get in touch with the Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS). They provide free and self-supporting advice to people in debt. They will offer you many advises for example pulling of budget, looking for your rights; try to work out for new loan arrangements with your moneylender. It will assist to carry out your dedications.

When you think about money lending companies, you may consider of banks or credit unions. But if you have bad credit, you may have fall back on to less advantageous money lending companies for example pawn shops or payday loan stores. These lenders often function more like a money shop than a financial practice. You’re not worth as an individual customer, but seen as a possible source of revenue. In fact, some lenders basically make more money from unsuccessful loans and non-payment than from borrowers who successfully complete their loan refunds.

At Cash Mart moneylender we think you should not have to theme yourself to dealing with a money shop to acquire the money you require. For many borrowers, Cash Mart moneylender constituted the best alternative among money lending companies. We mix the benefits of online lending with speedy procedures. As a direct lender, we don’t share your detail with third parties.

Cash Mart Moneylender is regarded as a win-win for shrewd borrowers like you. Why not check out the Cash mart Moneylender difference on your own? You’ll be happy you did.

​​Living Within Your Means to Achieve Financial Freedom

While most American households manage to earn a paycheck at the end of every month, only a few of them can manage to offset a $500 emergency without getting into debt. This is mainly because few people take the time to save up some cash from their earnings. Some will end up spending the unaccounted for earnings on items that are way beyond their means.

From fancy cars to expensive vacations, it can be tough for most people to overcome the pressures they get from friends who seem to be living their best life. As they set out to invest in these life pleasantries, the chances are that most might have to ignore common bills just to get by the month, or even borrow some cash. If this is you, then living within your means should be a priority.

Here is why living within your means is pivotal:

The Issue with Missing Payments

At first thought, the idea of missing payments for them to be rolled over to the next month, only to enjoy some extra luxuries, might seem reasonable. But there is more to this than quenching your thirst for life desires. Were you to miss telephone bills you risk disconnection as well as a late payment fee.

As such, you will have to pay both two months’ worth of subscription and the late payment fees. On the other hand, missing a single payment on your credit or mortgage can be detrimental to your credit score and lead to lower chances of securing short term loans in the future – which might save you from tricky situations. Furthermore, having to roll over payments to the next month might cause further stress in the future as you try to get back to your typical stability.

Save For the Future

The future is filled with uncertainties in terms of both opportunities and financial risks. The only certainty that you have is the amount of income you can get today, which is why saving it is essential. Instead of saving once you are done with spending, start with saving first.

This will require you to have enough visibility into what you earn, and set an ad hoc budget. You can commit to saving a certain percentage of your income over time. To make the goal easier to achieve, set saving milestones and celebrate each one that you achieve.

It Is Wiser To Save Than Rent

In the quest to live a luxurious life, most people will switch to renting consumer goods. While this might have the initial satisfaction of owning something that you have been yearning for, it raises the question of whether you made the right choice or not. For instance, if you rent out a TV for a year, the chances are that you might have raised enough in terms of the rent to actually buy the TV.

It would be better to try and save your way to buying the luxurious items that you want. This will also help you be in control of your spending habit through delayed gratification.

Boost Your Income

Despite trying to minimize costs, you might still find yourself struggling to make ends meet. While taking out a loan is an option for the short run, it shouldn’t be your only alternative. Try and diversify your income sources and make the most of allowances and employment benefits.

You can start by adjusting your tax withholding if you typically get a tax refund. On the other hand, you should also look to sign up to the right company benefits to maximize income. The best alternative would be to try out for another job to help fill the deficit.

Conclusion

Living beyond your means can only breed financial turmoil. The only way to be financially free is to take control of your finances. Consider the insights above while saving for the future to be prepared for any inevitable emergencies.

9 Best Expense Management Practices for Enterprises

When it comes to managing company finances, keeping the best practices in mind is crucial. Managing company spending is vital; therefore, executives should have knowledge about the best financial practices to make strategic business decisions. Organizations need to have the right tools in place and switch manual process to automation. Automating expense report process will save time filing &organizing expenses and importing accounts into accounting software. This article is intended to help businesses make strategic decisions about expense management.

Define Pre-approvals

Mandating approvals prior to making trips will lower the risk of overspend and fraud. Also, employees should not have unlimited access to corporate cards to make purchases. However, some employees may feel restricted when closely monitored. The solution must involve a pre-approval process along with controlling the employee spending. Administrator can set specific budgets to each employee. When employees need access to funds, they are required to take approval from admin for the amount and clearly state what the expense is for.  Administrator can review the request and either accept or deny. The pre-approval process can prevent overspending and fraud while controlling employee spending.

Expenses should be incurred while performing services as an employee. All the expenses must be submitted promptly. Overpayment should be returned in a timely manner and any excess reimbursements must be repaid to the employer in a reasonable time.

Company Card Strategy

Today corporate card programs are competitive; many of them offer various financial and operational benefits:

  • Incentives and rebates for purchases
  • Corporate cards minimize the cost of handling expense reports. By integrating corporate card data into T & E system, there is no need for employees to rekey their expenses and data is accurately captured.
  • Companies don’t require a receipt for anything under the specified threshold amount if corporate card is used for the transaction. This eliminates the time employees spend in creating expense reports.
  • Corporate card usage minimizes the number of falsified receipts. Since all the transactions are made through the card, the chance to submit a fake receipt is very minimal.

Policy Automation

Before automating the process, organizations used to conduct an intensive audit process to review the accounts payable process. This requires you to spend at least three full-time employees in reviewing the expense reports. By enforcing expense policy compliance through the rules engine, all the expenses are validated against corporate expense policy and other billable policies.

With automation, when an employee enters an expense that does not comply with the policy, the expense item is flagged. The employee is asked to provide an explanation or reasons for out of policy spending, based on which approvers may approve or reject. Certain expenses can be marked as personal, which can be deducted from out-of-pocket reimbursement. With corporate cards, employee spending can be monitored in the real-time.

Approval Process

The best practice is to always set business rules by roles, delegations and responsibilities when approving funds for spending. Approval workflows can be defined based on the hierarchy, expense threshold, attributes and other criteria. The approval process can be two-four levels, too many levels makes the process complex. Organizations prefer accounts payable department to be the final reviewer before importing the approved reports to the financial system for processing payments. Expense report software allows you to quickly approve expenses through the mobile app.

Eliminate Fraudulent Spending

Businesses rely on audits from the accounts payable department. The accounts payable department should not spend much time in ensuring business expenses are not misused. However, expense fraud can be easily accomplished. The following are some areas to look out for:

  • Excessive tips
  • Reporting international expenses
  • Entertainment expenses
  • Per diems based on the statutory requirements

Most companies go through the process of hiring financial personnel just to account employee expenses. Automated expense report software such as SutiExpense securely monitors employee spending in the real-time. Employees can only spend the allocated amount when on business travel. Expense software securely monitors the employee spending in the real-time. Expense reporting is meticulous to work without an automated expense system.

Educate

Companies need to educate employees about policies and provide them with boundaries. The following are a few ways to control employee spending and the risk of fraud:

  • Card limits and budgets
  • Record employee transactions and view as it happens in the real-time
  • Automatic reports avoids data entry

What You Need to Know About Payday Loans

You’re not going to be purchasing one of the Toronto homes for sale with a payday loan – these loans are for the short term, frequently used by those who need to get through a rough financial spot. But there are very few situations in which they’re actually a good idea. Companies make money off the fact that people are desperate to borrow even just a small sum to make it through their next payday.

To get the loan, the borrower can apply online, on the phone or visit a store. They must have a checking account, phone number, proof of income and valid ID. The borrower, once approved, writes a check to the business for the amount they want (usually up to $500) plus the fees and gives the lender authorization to debit the funds from their bank account on their next payday, typically two to four weeks. If it’s all paid back by that date, it’s done, but if the borrower doesn’t have all the money, they may extend or renew the loan.

Very High Interest Rates and Fees

 

The interest rates on payday loans are extremely high, with the exact amount depending on where you plan to take the loan out. In some states, like Ohio, Utah, Idaho, Virginia, Texas and Nevada, that rate is nearly 700 percent, according to CNBC. They cost more in interest in just one month than a credit card would in an entire year.

There can be other penalties too – if the company deposits your check and you don’t have the funds to cover it, you’ll get hit with a nonsufficient funds fee too. One study by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau revealed that four out of five payday loans are renewed within 14 days, which means the borrower is paying even more in fees that the amount of the original loan.

Loan Shark-like Tactics

 

Borrowers that don’t read all the fine print may be rather unpleasantly surprised if they find themselves unable to pay the loan back. Lenders can and do pursue all legal options, including all sorts of harsh collection tactics. They may sue in civil court and garnish wages or bank accounts. Borrowers can be under serious threat of financial ruin when it comes to paying back the high-interest loans.

Credit Score Damage

 

While a payday loan is unlikely to show up on a credit report, odds are it will if it is turned over to collections, damaging one’s credit score.

Don’t Be Fooled

Using payday loans regularly is a huge red flag that there is a serious financial problem that needs to be dealt with before it digs the borrower into an even deeper hole. After you take one out, the payday loan company will usually try to win your business again by offering increasingly larger loans. Don’t be fooled – they’re never a good deal. Instead, take control of your finances now, before it’s too late.

A Myth-Buster on Financial Planning

Imagine days where you won’t have to second guess on your future. Imagine being able to enjoy more of life because you were able to optimize your earning potential. Imagine of not having to worry so much about bills because you already got it covered. Well, you may want to stop imagining and act on that “imagination” right now.

Financial planning is one aspect which a number of people – mostly from the middle-class, lack. One sees it as a thing for the rich because, let’s face it, your hard-earned money is just about enough to cover your bills and daily necessities. There is barely anything left that needs planning.

There are firms that give an effective financial planning in San Diego and you will see that you do not need to be rich enough to be able avail yourself of financial planners to properly manage your hard-earned money. If you want to take control with your finances, you have to start to act now. But before you dive in, you must first be able get a grasp on the concept of what is financial planning, how does is work, and how will it help you get the most of your money and with your life.

The concept of financial planning revolves more on budgeting, retirement planning, saving, insurances and being able to minimize if not get out of your debts.

If you are not that equipped with the know-how of financial planning, you can seek advice from experts, but first, below are some points in evaluating on how you can plan your finances:

  • Evaluate your cash flow and establish a budget

The basic contemplation you must do when you want to be more in control of your finances is to   know how much is your earning capacity along with the things you spend your money on. With that, you can start to segregate the essential and non-essential expenses.

Then, you start listing down the expenses ranking them from most to least essential. From that list, you create a budget or a spending plan which should dictate what you should do with your money from a certain period.

You should try to create a detailed and​ ​written budget because this will also allow you to make smarter decisions with your finances. A budget will then require you to stop and think first whenever your impulsiveness in buying something new arises. This will make you realize certain areas which can actually help you save more from your money.

With this tool, you can see that you really do have excess money that you can use it to save for retirement, build up your emergency fund, pay down debt or apply to other financial goals.

The simplest method in creating a budget is by writing it down on paper, or you may use a spreadsheet or budgeting apps whichever is more convenient for you. If this is going to be your first time, try to test out different approaches each month so you can know which one best fits your needs and style.

  • Reduce Expenses and Pay off Debts

Now that you have established a budget, reducing unnecessary expenses should be easier. You must be able to sacrifice a few luxuries that you know you can still be able to avail of sometime in the future where your financial status has improved. With the extra money, you can start paying off your debts, especially those which are of big amounts and interests. This way, not only will this improve your credit scores, you will also be facing lesser burdens in the future.

  • Save. Save. Save.

Now that your money is being fairly allocated, you can now start stashing your cash and start thinking of investments and of course consider of planning your own retirement. Not all companies offer the best pensions plans, and you do not want to live by just relying on your Social Security pension fund.

You can start small with your investments, with this, you can evaluate which one works well for you – be it on stocks, foreign currency trade, insurances, and retirement plans. You have to consider how you want to live your life as you age. And being able to save up early will be very helpful, because when things will get tough, you know you are prepared enough, not just emotionally but also financially because you were already able to put up funds for the rainy days.

Building your financial status, especially if you are just starting out is not going to be easy. There will even come a time where you will ask yourself why you are restraining yourself to enjoy and live your life “now”.
You must not wither, you must be able to vividly paint that bright future not just for yourself but for your family as well. There are even books which offer financial literacy, inspiration for financial growth, and life coaches which is going to be of a big help as you build your own path.

So when you think that financial planning in San Diego is just for the rich and not for you because you are too busy catching up with life, then no, you will never have that financial breakthrough that you keep on praying for. You must change your mindset when you think about financial planning because, truth is, financial planning in San Diego are not all costly. You just have the will to start, and be diligent enough in finding the right tools for you. You can hire a good financial planner at a reasonable price, or you can choose to do it yourself. Waiting for your life to settle down before starting to think about financial planning will not be of help either, because before you know it, your hair had already turned gray and you may not even be halfway of settling your life down. So better do it now.

There will always be risks that come along with changes. But how will you be able to change your life if you do not want to take that first step. Right? Get that breakthrough that you have long been waiting for.

6 Reasons You Need a Personal Loan

When used well, loans can be a great way to cater for important expenses that your current income cannot immediately cover. You can incur a significant expenditure then stagger the cost over time.

Personal loans can come in especially handy since the requirements are less stringent than those of other more complex forms of credit such as a mortgage. The following are some of the reasons why you would want to take a personal loan via SimplePersonalLoans.

 

1. Consolidating Your Debt

 

You may find that over time, you have loans from different creditors all of which have varying interest rates and repayment dates. Even if your income can comfortably cover these debts, having too many creditors increases the chances of you dropping the ball. If you ever do default, it also makes the process of negotiating more favorable terms that much harder.

You could take up a personal loan and pay off all your outstanding balances. By doing that, you combine your debt into a single monthly payment to just one creditor. It’s easier to stay on top of this one payment without feeling overwhelmed.

 

2. Paying Off Credit Cards

 

The main target of debt consolidation is credit card debt. But using a personal loan to consolidate credit card debt isn’t just important in getting your repayments more organized. Credit cards are by far the most expensive type of debt you are likely to have. When reports talk about Americans drowning in debt, it’s almost always in reference to credit cards.

Credit cards creep up on you. Some seemingly insignificant spending here and there can amount to thousands of dollars in debt over a couple of months. With the high interest rates, you can easily find yourself unable to keep up. By paying off credit cards with a personal loan, you can convert your expensive debt into a more affordable one.

 

3. Home Remodeling

 

Every once in a while, your home needs some changes to either repair the things that are falling apart or to try out a new interior décor theme. Whether you are looking to install a new roof, remodel the kitchen, fit solar panels, or add a hot tub or swimming pool, a personal loan is the way to go if you don’t have sufficient equity on your home mortgage.

 

4. Wedding Expenses

 

If you have always dreamed of having an unforgettable wedding but the current state of your savings account means you cannot afford it, you could always apply for a personal loan.

A wedding is a once in a lifetime event. Even for people who divorce, they are unlikely to remarry more than 4 times in their lifetime. Therefore, you don’t want to miss out on making sure everything is perfect just because you don’t have the money right now. A wedding personal loan can cover the bride’s dress, cake, flowers, photography, hiring the venue and more.

 

5. Emergency Moving

 

You’ve just gotten a job in a different city or state and you have to report to your duty station in a matter of days. Your new employer won’t cater for your moving expenses. A personal loan could help.

Ordinarily, moving is something we plan for months in advance. That gives you the time you need to organize the logistics and set aside the cash required. Sometimes though, moving must take place on short notice like the example we’ve shared.

If it’s a long distance move, the costs can pile up quickly. A personal loan can pay for the cost of moving your household belongings and car across the country, as well as paying the new rent and buying any new items you need at your new residence.

 

6. Medical Bills

 

The cost of healthcare in the United States can be prohibitively expensive. Also, not everything will be covered by your insurance plan. You will be forced to dig into your pocket to cover dental services, fertility treatment, cosmetic surgery, and orthodontics. These and ancillary costs such as hospital parking, medical travel and aftercare can be handled by a personal loan.

While a personal loan is a convenient tool to address immediate expenses, always remember that you eventually have to pay it back. Therefore, only take a personal loan when you are certain your income can cover it.

Choose Your Ecommerce Niche

Launching an eCommerce store is a great way to generate passive income while working towards building a full-time income depending on the products and services you provide. Choosing the right eCommerce niche to represent and work in highly depends on your personal interests, current trends, and the demographics you intend to reach. Researching and comparing various eCommerce niche opportunities is a great way to come to a decision you feel comfortable with and confident in.

Research Popular Markets

Researching markets of interest is the first step to take when planning the launch of an eCommerce store. Spend time learning about the products or services you intend to offer while gathering information regarding the market’s overall value and projected growth.

Compare Keyword and Phrase Popularity

Before creating a successful eCommerce site it is imperative to learn everything there is to know about popular keywords and phrases in your target market. Use tools such as Google Trends to compare keywords along with phrases that are most commonly searched when browsing for your prime product. Use multiple search engines such as Google, DuckDuckGo, Yahoo!, and Bing to research specific keywords and their density. Take note of top URLs that appear within the first page of search results for each keyword you plan to target.

Consider Your Competition

Outperforming your online competition is essential when building an eCommerce site that you intend to expand. Consider the top competition in the niche you have your sights on and spend time reviewing each individual website in-depth. Spend time surfing each competitive website while comparing the layout, messaging, and product placement of each.

How does your top competition stand out from your intended eCommerce shop? Do they provide exclusive deals for those who subscribe to their newsletter? Is their eCommerce site using a plugin to sell products or services or are they utilizing a third-party selling system? Does your top competition have a heavy social media presence? How does their logo and overall branding work with the type of consumers they are reaching? What type of customer service outlets do they provide to their users? Is it possible to get more information on your competitors’ website via live chat or a traditional FAQ page?

Understanding your top competition and how they operate is one of the most important elements of launching a successful eCommerce website of your own. When you have a thorough understanding of how successful businesses currently operate in your desired industry, create an eCommerce site that truly stands out and fulfills a need of your intended audience.

Find the Right Manufacturers

Choosing an optimal manufacturer for the product you want to promote is one of the most challenging aspects of building a successful eCommerce site and established online brand. Research both local and international manufacturers and work together with your choice to develop a product that is high-quality, durable, and visually appealing. Spend the most time creating prototypes and developing products to ensure they are not simply “run of the mill” items and that they stand out from relevant products that are currently available on the market. Compare prices and consider your profit margin before choosing a manufacturer that is right for you. If you intend on selling products that are already developed, request test items before placing a large order (especially if you have goals to outperform the top providers in your industry).

Calculate Your Marketing Budget

Calculate the marketing and advertising budget you have available before launching your official eCommerce website. Consider the methods you intend to use in order to effectively reach those who have a genuine interest in the services and products you offer. Both third-party ad servers such as Google Ads along with social media platforms (Facebook Ads) provide an array of tools to maximize your online reach with any budget you have available to work with for your first campaigns.

Use A/B testing when launching a new online ad campaign to learn more about the most effective messaging, copy, and types of imagery that work best with the target demographics you want to reach. Spend smaller amounts when you are first breaking into a new industry to avoid overextending your budget on advertisements that fall flat or simply do not appeal to your intended audience.

Professional ECommerce Development

Once you have determined the best eCommerce niche, seek out professional development services to launch your Magento website. A professional development company has the ability to design and launch robust and complex Magento eCommerce stores that fit with the niche and target audience you want to reach. Avoid using premade Magneto templates to truly stand out from your competition when you launch your official eCommerce site.

A professional development company provides you with more freedom and flexibility while developing the look and aesthetic of your site. Even if you are unfamiliar with programming yourself, professional Magento developers have the skills and abilities necessary to implement plugins and features that help your website stand out from the crowd once you are ready to launch.

Understanding the necessary steps involved in launching a successful eCommerce store is essential whether you plan to use your online shop as a source of passive income or if you intend to work full-time from home. With the right preparation and adequate research, choose an eCommerce niche that allows you to maximize your online reach and the overall amount of revenue you are capable of generating.

Malta: Fund Tokenization Mecca

Situated at middle of the Mediterranean, Malta has been known to travellers for historic buildings, stunning coastlines, and weather so fair that you would wish the vacation never lasts. But recently, a new attraction is drawing a crowd; vacationers not looking to relax, but techies looking to take advantage of latest offering of blockchain technology – Fund Tokenization.

The blockchain fever has caught in Malta. Already known for business friendly taxation policies, Malta has set itself up as one of the best locations to host the next technological iteration of investing. Already, blockchain fixtures are moving into the archipelagic country in droves.

Government backing

The Maltese government, taking notice of the development and realizing the opportunity was steadfast in mechanizing their regulatory arms. The maltese government worked to pass several legislations, namely (1) MDIA – Malta Digital Innovation Authority Act, (2) ITASA –  Innovative Technology Arrangements and Services Act, and (3) VFAA – Virtual Financial Assets Act. These prompted the formation of the a number of agencies. The Malta Digital Innovation Authority was created as the general overseer of all things blockchain. Under which are, Innovative Technology Arrangements and Services which is responsible for putting to paper the policies for DLT or Distributed Ledger Technology and Virtual Financial Assets which is tasked for creating guidelines for digital tokens such as securities, service providers for brokering and financial management, and initial coin offerings or ICOs.

Being a member of the EU in itself is already an advantage by being able to freely trade with a gigantic economic bloc. But more specifically, Malta has jurisdiction advantage for investors. The country offers more relaxed regulations compared to other states in the union. Furthermore, Malta has passed legislation to update the CIS(Collective Investment Schemes). The main reason for this is to adapt to the complexities of crypto trading and ease the burden of the investors’ legal teams.

The MFSA(Malta Financial Services Authority) heads Malta’s government in authenticating and granting legal status of assets defined in the CIS. As part of the country’s initiative to get in on the crypto market, the government, through the MFSA, broadened the definition of assets to clearly include ones that are based on crypto. Other countries, as well, use a similar scheme as the CIS. This amplifies the significance of the move taken by the Maltese government such that it could encourage other big economies to take heed and update their own laws.

Still, as a regulatory body, MFSA will take charge of policing many fund transactions. Every fund, will be reviewed thoroughly which will include multiple hearings and the submission written documents that will legibly discuss the fund’s general function, top down composition, aims, related risks, and capabilities of the fund. The MFSA will reserve judgement for either awarding of declining any prayer to start a fund in the country.

Setting up the Fund

PIF or Professional Investor Funds are ventures enacted under the ISA (Investment Services Act). These funds are made especially for upscale investors and professionals – hence the name. The regulations under them are less stringent and flexible. This makes them perfect in putting up tokenized funds than using other schemes like retail.

Since its inception in 1994, PIFs have been a favorite in setting up unconventional forms of funds such as securities. And currently, not surprisingly, it is now used to structure crypto assets.

The tokenized fund will most likely be housed under a company for legality. It may be regarded as simply an investment company but with varying equity (SICAV – Société d’investissement à capital variable).

A tokenized fund set in Malta defines an active member called promoters which are similar to general partners in that they own voting shares and it is their task to gather capital. The tokenized shares and its future profits will then be given to the limited partners.

A limit set to half a billion euros is imposed on total assets that can be acquired by any PIFs if it is not payable to another entity or no agreement for the company to re-buy the stocks they have handed out in five or less number of years.The same also applies, regardless of any buy back agreement if the assets dips below the hundred million mark.

Should the PIF peak its limit, another written document, the Alternative Investment Funds, will take effect. This is the unpreferable option as it severely limits the options of the fund. It is of the best interest of the fund to keep within the bounds set for the PIF.

The minimum amount to invest in any PIF is a hundred thousand euros. Invites are also only to be handed out to licensed investors as a requirement by law. This investor may be a person, a corporation, or any other institution that the state officially recognizes. The investor’s total worth as well should sum to at least three fourths of a million euros. If the investor, is constituted by many persons however, each constituent is considered qualified.

The management of the fund can be assigned to a third party or externally. This is opposed to internal management that is headed by the fund’s own board. If the fund is not externally managed, a hundred and twenty five thousand euros is required as start up capital.

When selecting or replacing a director, a written permission from the MFSA has to be procured first. The MFSA is tasked to curate potential directors for their capacity, capability and general background.

If management of the tokenized fund is managed externally by a Maltese manager. The MFSA requires that the manager have proper certification given only by them. If the manager is not from Malta, he is required by the MFSA to undergo scrutinization to his ability is on par with the licensing required of their Maltese counterparts.

In cases where a manager resigns, a custodian may or may not be appointed. In case of the latter, MFSA will ensure that the existing structure sans a manager suffices. Custodians as well need not be directly part of the company or a Maltese citizen. And similarly, they are to be tested for their qualification by the MFSA.

The Personal Things You Need to Run and International Business

If you are reading this, then you will be a driven and ambitious person who is always looking for ways to help their business achieve higher profits and growth, soaring into the heady heights of success. While there is much material online that will attempt to tell you how to run your international business, this guide will instead let you know what you personally need to make your professional, jet-setting lifestyle much easier and get the results you want out of every trip you take.

Have your travel money with you

As a business person, you will be used to dealing with money and accounts from the comfort of your home office or desk at work but when you are traveling for business, this is not always as easy. During the average week, you won’t be claiming on the company expenses or having to go very far to get to work, but when you are in another country you will need a safe and secure way of accessing company funds and want to have something in place as a safety net should something go wrong.

For this, the best move you can make is to get a Scotia Passport Visa Infinite credit card which is specifically designed for the needs of high earners who travel frequently like yourself. This credit card is able to travel with you and eliminates the need to always deal in cash when you are on the go, which can be both cumbersome and dangerous.

High Flyer

To run an international business means that you, yourself, will be running all over the globe to important meetings and networking events, not to mention visiting your other offices abroad. With this in mind, the way you travel is incredibly important and tied to how successful each trip is going to be. In this section of the article, your travel needs will be broken down into three bite-sized pieces so that you can ensure you are getting the most out of every trip.

The right airline

When you are going to be frequently flying for business trips, the last thing you want is to spend hours upon hours in an uncomfortable economy seat. To remedy this, you need to find the airlines with the best business class when you go to book your trip overseas. Next time you book, consider these alternative companies when you book to get the best experience possible in business class:

  • Singapore Airlines
  • Skytrax
  • Qatar Airways (voted best in the world)
  • Ethiopian Airlines
  • Hainan Airlines

Pack smart

Even if you go on frequent trips, there is always going to be something you forget which will put a spanner in the works. Using a checklist for your next business trip is one way to avoid such embarrassment. Truth be told, you won’t let yourself forget those important presentation slides, but if you have to give that presentation after no being able to brush your teeth, you’re in serious trouble.

Try dividing your packing into two sections: the basics and the specifics.

The basics will include a toothbrush and paste, changes of clothes, deodorant, and facewash, whereas the specific pile will be all the documents and technology you need to bring with you to work on the plane and be ready for every meeting and presentation you need to give.

Luggage fit for the runway

As a business person, borrowing an old suitcase from a friend simply will not do and certainly won’t make a good impression as you meet your associates upon touch down. You need to invest in some of the top luxury luggage that is available on the market as this will make you look great and make travel easier.

Samsonite is the most successful luggage brand in the world and for good reason too. These suitcases are light and strong, coming in a range of colors and using their trademark Curv technology.

Rimowa is another brand that you should check out. Having been around this the 1930s, Rimowa luggage is both timelessly stylish and benefitting from sleek German design.

If you are really seeking to impress your business associates when you travel abroad, then opting for cases by a designer such as Louis Vuitton could be your best bet. The Vuitton design is known around the world and is synonymous with wealth and style, which will help you to come across as extremely professional when you touch down abroad.

Have technology on your side

In the office, you will have a state-of-the-art computer that helps you to complete all your tasks quickly and to the highest possible standard. However, when you are traveling, you can’t take your thirty-inch monitor and computer tower with you and instead need to invest in a high-quality laptop to see you through whatever work your travels may entail.

The best way to begin with this is to research what the top business laptops currently are according to both technology and travel experts before your part with your hard earnt cash.

When traveling, you will be looking to fulfill three criteria:

  • Lightweight
  • Long battery life
  • Big storage capacity

When people think of laptops, the Apple Mac is where their minds usually go, but this is not always the best choice for business people. One of the top-ranked laptops on the market for business professionals is the Dell XPS 13, which comes with a seventh-generation intel core processor, a large storage space, and sleek design.

Another laptop worth looking into is the Microsoft Surface Book Two, which comes with eighth-generation intel quad-core processing, 512 GB of storage, and has the handy benefit of being able to change between being a laptop and a tablet. This last benefit is perfect for running a presentation or having to read documents on the go.

Being the head of an international business is never an easy task and certainly not one for the faint of heart, but with the information about what you need to make your trips abroad run that bit more smoothly, you are well on your way to global success.

Investing Myths You Shouldn’t Believe

There’s a great deal of confusion out there surrounding the topic of investing and many of those myths are keeping average people from investing. While you might think the vast information found on the internet helps dispel these myths, it really provides a breeding ground for more misconceptions to gain popularity. Taking the time to look for the truth behind these myths can help you prepare more fully for your first investment experience.

Myth 1: You Need a Fortune to Get Started

It’s a common belief that your investment won’t perform well unless you have thousands of dollars to invest. This simply isn’t true. You can buy shares in many stocks for under $100. Since you can expect an average annual return of 7% on your investments, holding onto those stocks for 40 years can earn you up to $1,500. While investing more will certainly present the potential of earning more, smaller investments can help you grow your capital.

Myth 2: You Should Cash in at Retirement

The idea behind this myth is that seniors will need all of their savings to pay their living expenses at retirement and holding onto stocks can risk that nest egg. However, if you follow the 4% rule, which dictates withdrawing 4% of your savings for each year of retirement, you will likely need to continue earning more after retirement. The best strategy is to work with a freelance consultant in determining which stocks to hold onto and which ones to cash out. This will enable you to reduce the risks, while still earning on a few select stocks.

Myth 3: Stocks Aren’t as Safe as Bonds

People assume that bonds provide more stability over stocks and that may be true in a short-term assessment, but it proves false over a longer stretch of time. While the stock market fluctuates from month to month, it does remain constant when examined on a year to year basis. Looking at Standard & Poor’s 500 index, the market has stayed fairly consistent, remaining between 8% and 15% since 1926. This suggests a diverse portfolio of premium stocks can perform just as well as investing in quality bonds.

Myth 4: Buying Stocks is as Risky as Gambling

While much of the gambling experience relies on luck, the same isn’t true of investing in stocks. If you make poor choices that involve investing in high-risk stocks for a quick return, you will likely face the same odds that any casino would provide. However, taking the time to choose high-quality blue chip stocks and researching the potential investment will help you earn over time. In most cases, you can expect an 8% annual return. You won’t get that at any casino.

Myth 5: Past Performance Indicates Future Returns

Many investors cling to the idea that a stock which has performed well in the past will do so again. While that can be true in some cases, there’s no way to know when that stock will rise again, or if it will at all. You may end up losing your savings before that stock pays off. The best approach is to plan for a long-term investment with a quality stock and expect that you may see some fluctuation throughout the years.

The best way to dispel myths is by learning about the market and researching individual stocks on your own. You may even choose to work with an advisor who can help you learn more about investing. As you experience investing first hand, you’ll begin to see what is true and what is myth. Only this type of experience will help you learn practical lessons, so you can grow your wealth throughout your lifetime.

Author Bio: Douglas Pitassi is a freelance writer and small business blogger.