4 Tips for Saving Money While Visiting Another Country

Traveling to another country is always a fun and interesting experience, but it can also be quite expensive if you’re not prepared to control your spending habits. On the other hand, you don’t want to be too cheap either because you might wind up feeling like you missed out. Luckily, there are plenty of ways you can see all the best sights and scenery a destination has to offer without breaking the bank. With that said, here are four tips you can use to save money while visiting another country:

1. Send Money Back Home

The first thing you may want to do once you’ve decided you’re going to limit your spending during your trip is transfer money to a family member or friend whom you trust, so they can hold onto it as a reserve. If you’re walking around with a bunch of money in your account, you might fall into the temptation of splurging on something expensive. By putting a cap on your available funds for the trip, you can strictly enforce a set budget.

2. Opt for Free or Low-Cost Attractions

It’s easy to overspend when you’re visiting nothing but top-notch tourist attractions, shopping malls, and restaurants. Consider taking the “beach bum” approach instead – enjoying nature’s beauty for free. Beach bums have virtually no living expenses, yet somehow many of them manage to live in beautifully exotic destinations whereas other people pay thousands just to visit the same place for a week. While we’re not advocating intentional descent into homelessness, the point is there are plenty of parks, beaches, landmarks, and other natural attractions that won’t cost a penny to see.

3. Commute By Bicycle or Walk

If you rely fully on the public transportation system, chances are there will be places that are beyond the reach of the bus or train routes, especially the more majestic rural wonders of the area. Taking a cab is going to be expensive, especially if you’re trying to go out of town. Consider the advantages of buying a bike for commuting while on vacation. You can spend $100 on a functional bicycle and have the ability to travel at no cost other than leg power, or you can spend $100 on a single taxi ride – the choice is yours.

4. Go Camping Instead of Staying at a Hotel

Everyone wants to stay at a luxury hotel when they’re on vacation, but you could do so much more with your money if you camp instead. Many national parks have campgrounds, so you have the added benefit of being able to sleep near major landmarks and attractions. You might not get a pre-packaged continental breakfast and spa treatment, but waking up to fresh air, serene surroundings, and fantastic views makes it almost as good. In fact, someone would argue that camping is more fun than staying at a hotel.

Vacations Don’t Even Have to Be Expensive

A lot of people think that vacations are so prohibitively expensive that they can only be taken once or twice a year. The truth is, if you have the free time available, with discounted flight tickets or a vehicle that gets good gas mileage, you can take a decent vacation for less than $1,000 as a single individual.

Other ways you can save money on vacation include using rewards credit cards, taking advantage of online booking deals, and traveling to countries where your currency is worth more. Ultimately, the best way to have the most fun for the least money is to thoroughly plan your trip and allocate a budget for everything beforehand.

How Coworking Spaces Save Your Business Money?

Are you a freelancer, digital nomad, or someone who works from home or café?

Yes? Well, at some point, a café, garage or home no longer cut as a workspace and coworking space could be your next step.

What Is A Coworking Space?

Coworking space is an informal room sharing arrangement where work and businesses are based on the sharing of common ideas between its participants. This space involves both, individuals working independently and collaboratively.

It is a lot more four walls, desks, and a stable internet connection. As you start working there, you interact with like-minded people; enjoy an interactive work environment, have a better work-life balance.

Coworking spaces are becoming popular every day and can be now found all over the world. According to global coworking spaces forecast, the number of these spaces will be over 30,000 in 2022, and members are expected to be around 3.8 million by 2020 and 5.1 million in 2022.

The popularity of these spaces is undeniable. But how does a coworking space benefit you? Does it help you save money and make more revenue, or only space works for you? Continue reading.

How Shared or Coworking Space Saves You Money?

While it acts as a necessary foundation to establish your business, here is how it provides you with monetary benefits:


  • Coworking Spaces Are Already Furnished


It is no surprise that furnishing an office is expensive. Not only, you have to invest money for it, but a lot of effort is also invested in the construction work, estimating construction jobs, moving companies, etc. All of which otherwise are saved by opting for co-working spaces.

When you leverage a coworking space, arranging chairs, tables, filing cabinets, drawers, and more is not your part of the job. Some space providers even customize the area on your request.


  • You Save on Amenities Cost


If compared to the traditional office space, you only pay for the desk space that you need in the entire workspace. All the amenities in the coworking space like break rooms, meeting rooms, and kitchens are communal and work on the model of shared use of resources.

However, if you plan to offer coworking space service, the office space for rent Ottawa also works as a great option. A 2018 research published on Building Design + Construction found that 72% of landlords agreed that co-working operators with a strong brand have benefits for their development.

Saves Your Time

Time is money, and it goes without saying!

Whether you own a small or medium sized business, startup, or work as a freelancer, the vendor, lease, and network issues will not eat into your time. Neither your pocket!

Provides You with Flexible Spaces

New startups are not sure when they will grow or need an extended foot area. So, if you rent a larger space, you will end up paying for the entire contract, regardless of your team size.

But a coworking space takes off this worry. You will only have to pay for the desk space or foot area, which you are going to use initially and the owner will let you use a larger area when your company grows.

Apart from saving you money, other factors that drive its popularity include flexibility in usage of space, economic benefits, networking opportunities, the presence of in-house staff such as administrative team, improved time management, professional setting, and lot more.

A Harvard Business Review research also found, 89% of people reported that they are happy, since they have joined a workspace.


If we look back, coworking was considered to be a trend, which many of us believe would fade away. But with new benefits emerging every day, it is coming up as a global phenomenon. They are giving independent businesses a whole new innovative work-life approach and owners are also adapting it.

With this, we can say that coworking spaces are here to stay, and its growth possibilities are endless.

Guide to Writing a PhD Finance Research Proposal

Before you start writing a PhD thesis in some universities, it is necessary to prepare a proposal for research (Research Proposal), which will become the basis of a future dissertation. The research proposal is normally presented at least 4 months before the thesis is presented and is the second mandatory stage of work on it after coordination and approval of the thesis topic.

When writing a professional PhD research proposal from scratch, students necessarily reflect two dissertation preparation blocks:

  • theoretical and methodological part of the thesis;
  • research part of the dissertation.

The theoretical and methodological part describe the relevance of the topic of the finance PhD research, establishes the problem area, the object and subject of research, as well as the purpose and objectives of the work associated with the hypothesis (hypotheses) of the study. The first part also includes an analysis of the main sources of literature – a review of the key sources in this area, as well as a proposal for working with primary sources, including periodicals, research data, etc. Based on the plan and concept of the dissertation, a brief description of the future work, its structure is given.

In the research part, on the basis of the hypothesis put forward (hypotheses) of the research, the methodology of the future research, the design, the expected results, the system of the methods used are described, the validity criteria of the research are established. The research proposal is approved by the student’s supervisor, agreed with the head of the master’s program and defended before the supervisor.

A research proposal is a document that describes in detail what is planned to write for research work on a specific PhD project. To come up with material that will serve as the basis for a successful proposal, you need to think over and prepare a topic. Once you have a topic, review the literature to identify gaps. This will help you identify and highlight the problem area. It will also provide an opportunity to add body and demonstrate knowledge. The introduction is the next stage where you can formulate a statement of the goal, which describes in detail why the topic is of interest and importance. You can do this by highlighting the gap you have noted and the relevance of the solution to the main problem. This will give you a guide on how you should argue, suggesting a field of study.

The research question should be properly described with clearly defined goals and objectives for the results. A preliminary bibliography can also be constructed by writing links, pages, authors. Titles and publication information. Specify the methods that will be used to collect your data; for example, if you conduct informal interviews or hand out questionnaires. Depending on the topic, the focus group can also be used to collect accurate information. Review your audience and understand that they need a comprehensive offer to follow your proposal, accept its ingenuity and welcome your choice of learning.

If you offer a narrow topic or an insufficiently defined area of  study, you can instill confidence in the reader by compiling a list of resources that you will consult to obtain conclusive evidence and results. Such as: documentaries, publications, magazines, newspaper records and even biographies that will support your research.

It is important to demonstrate that you can complete the work on time or at the time set by the institution. This will be demonstrated when discussing data collection and analysis methods. Be sure to include the ethical permissions required for your research, if necessary. Sometimes approval is required depending on your training method. For the safety of the participants involved, it is necessary to ensure that the investigation is conducted with respect. It is also useful to mention a methodology that differs from the method when writing a good research proposal for PhD application. Methodology refers to a theory that justifies the method of research that you have chosen to comply with. Given these few simple instructions, you can write a good research proposal.

The Omega seamaster aqua terra is a Smart Choice for Business

Watches are objects that are related t fashion and are responsible to add the dash of elegance to your overall look. No matter how dramatically you choose to dress for an event hoe perfect your combination of attire may be, when it comes to the complete look, a watch can make substantial difference. Hence, it is always must have for fashion pro people to have a perfect collection of watches in their closet.  When it comes to luxury watches, one finds no dearth of choices in the market. However, if you have a taste for a watch that will render your identity a completely new dimension, opting for an omega seamaster aqua terra would be a smart option. A watch that dominated the European lands for long and bow ruling the world with its sophisticated appearance would be a valuable addition to your fashion wardrobe.  Be it a party, an office meeting or a candlelight dinner, your personality will find the right vibes in every occasion as long as you augment your wrist with a fine timepiece from the house of omega seamaster aqua terra.

The evolution

Immediately after WWII, when the market was finding ways to survive and the world economy was going through depressions, the watch industry faced a crisis as well. IWC Portuguese, also known as IWC Portugieser, with its inception around the late 19th century, had to suffer the same. However, their efforts to come up with something new that will suffice the requirement of the new age made them a permanent and renowned name in the market over time, the revolutionary designs and the adaptation to apt and perfect technologies marked success for IWC Portuguese. Though the market always had and will have its own ways to move, this brand has made substantial impact on the watch lovers with its carried range of collection and unconventional designs.

The variety

Specialized in making military watches, sports watches and aviation watches, IWC Portuguese has always been innovative in its approach. The Swiss Luxury brand was incepted by an America Engineer and has always remained as a top preference amongst all the watch lovers worldwide. There are multiple varieties available to meet the varying requirements of the customers and the designers and watchmakers at IWC Portuguese have always kept in mind the easy to use technologies in mind while crafting these timeless timepieces. A perfect pick for all, these watches come with stunning styles, exceptional elegance, superior mechanism and the brand trust of IWC Portuguese.

The design

The Arabic numerals, the oversized subdual, the pared-black dial and a thin bezel are some of the characteristic features that defined the class of an IWC Portuguese. However, with the modernization of the brand, it has integrated other forms of numerals, colors of dial and shape of the bezel to make the watches look urban. The slim hands, the railway track design chapter ring and the Deco-style Arabic numerals are the latest additions to this watch that make it a must for all who has fine taste of aesthetics.

What Are Working Capital Loans and How Do They Work?

The failure rate of small businesses shows exactly how difficult it is to survive in the competitive markets of today. The fact that the main reason for this is cash flow problems indicates that working capital loans can become ‘lifesavers’ for many companies struggling to keep afloat. However, despite its efficiency, this tool will only work when used correctly. Therefore, it’s essential for business owners to understand when exactly they should use this type of financing and how much money they can afford to borrow.

Understanding Working Capital Loans: 3 Basic Questions Answered

What is a working capital loan?

A working capital loan is a loan that a business can take in order to obtain working capital to cover its immediate needs. This is a loan only fit for using in short-term, so one shouldn’t rely on it to finance long-term plans. These loans usually have very high interest rates, so they should be repaid as fast as possible.

The majority of working capital loans are secured with the company’s assets. However, many lenders today are more flexible about their terms than traditional banks and credit unions. Therefore, you should look up reliable sources that have working capital loans explained. They will provide you with a list of top lenders so you can study their individual terms. Those financing sources often provide unsecured loans that have minimum eligibility requirements. Therefore, they are available even to new businesses and those with a bad credit score.

How does a working capital loan work?

A working capital loan works like any other loan, only you use it to cover the everyday expenses of your business. This type of loan can be a good choice for businesses that depend on seasonality, as it will tide them over through a slow period. It’s the same for any company that experiences a shortage of liquid assets due to some issues and needs some cash flow to get back on track.

The most common uses for working capital loans are:

  • Wages
  • Hiring new stuff to handle a holiday rush
  • First time payments of increased business insurance premiums
  • Important and immediate purchases (for example, some type of supply is available at a great discount if you buy it in bulk on a time-limited offer)

How to calculate the size of the working capital loan you need?

The logical way to determine the size of a working capital loan you need is to calculate your working capital. Then, consider how much money your business actually has, and take out a loan to meet your needs. You can use a Net Working Capital Needs Calculator to help you.

However, business loans aren’t that simple. In the majority of cases, a company might not be able to take out a loan to match their needs exactly because they can’t afford to repay it. The cost of the loan as well as its impact on your revenue projections must be considered when calculating the amount.

How to Make Sure a Working Capital Loan Truly Helps Your Business

A working capital loan can literally make or break your business. Therefore, it’s imperative to consider this financing very carefully. Taking a loan will provide your business with the cash to meet its immediate needs, which can help you either gain an advantage or avoid failing.

The main concern in regards to working capital loans is their high interest rates. Those are the reason why this kind of financing is only viable as a short-term stopgap measure. If you try to use it for a while, your revenue might not be able to cover all necessary business expenses as well as the cost of this new loan.

Note that missing payments on working capital loans is extremely bad. Not only does this make your debt grow fast, which can put you in a position worse than the one that made you seek financing in the first place. But the missed payments will also lower your credit score. If you use the services of online lenders, this would be your personal credit score, not the company’s. This will make it harder to obtain any financing in the future.

Therefore, you need to do your calculations carefully and make sure that you borrow only the amount of money you can afford. In this particular case, it’s best to go with less than take out a bigger loan than you need, which comes with bigger interest rates and other issues.

The good news is that obtaining that kind of loan won’t be a problem at all. Online lenders today make this process easy and you don’t even need to provide any excessive paperwork to prove your need for a working capital loan. Banks are very reluctant in giving loans to small businesses today, so alternative lenders might be your only chance to get the money you need to keep your company.

Know The Best Employee Scheduling Solutions On The Web

Is your business not running as well it should be?

This is a major point of concern for millions of businesses around the world including some of the larger corporations in the world. However, it’s important to understand where inefficiencies begin to develop leading to negative results. One of the main concerns that have been noticed by experts includes the misuse of scheduling processes by businesses. The processes are often all over the place leading to sustained negativity and gaps in efficiency.

To avoid this predicament, it’s time to look at the value of an employee work schedule app for modern companies.

What is Employee Scheduling?

Employee scheduling refers to the idea of organising and managing the workforce in your business. For example, let’s imagine a factory with 100+ workers clocking in and out throughout the day. This can lead to severe inefficiencies in how the hours are dispersed and how well the factory functions on a day-to-day basis.

This is why many businesses are now venturing towards the use of free employee scheduling software for their setup.

Benefits of an Employee Scheduling App

1) 24/7 Accessibility

Let’s begin with a simple benefit that has proven to play a role in how well a business does with its workforce. In general, managers will look through their records once a day and assume everything is okay. However, true efficiency is seen when the business is easy to monitor around the clock without causing issues.

Instead of dealing with these troubles, it’s highly recommended to consider all of your options and move towards a more well-rounded solution. The app is designed to provide around the clock accessibility without having to worry about missing out on potential scheduling concerns. Everything can be seen through the app ensuring people are on the same page.

This alone can ensure the business is heading towards better results.

2) Improved Efficiency

Efficiency is the number one requirement for modern businesses and that’s what a scheduling app brings to the table. It’s one of the finest ways to make sure everything is running like a well-oiled machine. With the app, you are able to look through everything as it happens to ensure the workforce is being utilised to its fullest potential.

There are many ways to become more efficient and that is what a business has to keep in mind. For example, a business is going to need to look at how much money is being spent per hour on its employees and whether or not there are slow periods during the day. If so, the scheduling app can start to show where the issues lie.

Before these apps were available, most businesses would do things manually and there is always room for error when such an approach is taken. For those serious and wanting to make a change to their business operations, a quality employee scheduling app is able to ensure everything runs smoothly over the long-run. A simple change such as this is going to illustrate where a business needs to focus as it looks to take the next step.

3) Consistent System

When it comes to employee scheduling solutions on the web, you will want to enjoy the consistency that comes with an option such as this. You are able to play around with the settings and get it to work for your needs. This customisation is what people enjoy because everything will continue to run as desired.

The scheduling app is all about nailing down specifics and figuring out what works well for the business. As soon as you spot an issue, you are able to fix it and bring the business back to how it needs to be.

4) Easier to Spot Flaws

Flaws pop up all the time even in the finest organisations in the world. When this is a problem that has to be dealt with, you want to know what is being put in front of you as a business owner. Since scheduling is a proven troublemaker, it is best to spot flaws as soon as you get the opportunity to do so.

It keeps things simple and you are able to find those pesky flaws well in advance.

Otherwise, a business may continue to push forward assuming nothing is wrong until it is time to look into their accounts.

5) Promotes Collaboration

Professional employee scheduling solutions on the web encourage collaboration and that alone is a great way to push your business to the top of its niche.

As employees learn to work together, this can be a wonderful way to learn more about what the workforce has to offer. Many businesses get stuck with the status quo and assume this is more than enough for them to get things done when that’s not always the case! You want to be able to use the scheduling app as a launching pad for a better run organisation.

Even a small group collaboration can be managed with a scheduling app.

6) Increased Automation

Automation is the way of the future and it is something you have to keep an eye out for as a business owner. Scheduling is one of those issues that pop up from time to time and you want an automated option by your side. A simple addition such as this is going to make all the difference as you hope to figure things out.

Instead of relying on a manual solution that doesn’t account for everything, why not make the most of an app such as this? It can be a game-changer for the business as it moves forward.

Final Thoughts

Premium employee scheduling solutions can make a tremendous difference in how a business runs on a daily basis. Subtle changes such as this can go a long way in bringing everyone together and optimising the workplace. In the past, many businesses wing this part of their operations and it leads to increased inefficiencies.

Instead of allowing this to happen, it’s best to focus on the use of top-tier employee scheduling solutions!

When to Contact a Home Restoration Professional

If you have water damage in your home and want to get it under control as soon as possible, you might be wondering if you should handle the water and mold damage alone or contact a professional.

You could be tempted to do it yourself to save money on repair fees. Keep in mind, though, that not addressing the water damage the right way gives it time to progress and get even worse than it already was. In the end, you will pay a lot more if you try containing it yourself and fail. If you don’t want to face that situation, learn when to contact a water restoration expert, and you will be glad you did.

Why You Need an Expert

You might see a little water damage from a leak or burst pipe and believe you can take care of it on your own. A lot of people take that path and think they are making progress and that they have removed the water. When you try to dry all the water in your home, you can only get water on the surface of your carpet or drywall. Any water that remains under the surface can cause your boards to rot or allow mold to grow, issues you don’t want to face.

Roof Leaks

The shingles on your roof do an excellent job at preventing water from getting into your home and causing harm. The shingles are positioned in a way that causes rainwater to run off your roof and into your gutters, and it goes into the ground from there. Wind and hail damage can make cracks in your shingles that let water pass through to your boards and home. Also, shingles can crack with time, and those who live in areas with extreme temperatures are even more at risk. If you have water damage from a leak in your roof, you want to get an expert on the job.

Faucet and Pipe Leaks

If you check under your sink and discover your faucet pipes have been leaking, take action right away. In addition to causing water damage, a leaky pipe can also run up your water bill more than you think.

Some people ignore a leaky pipe because they don’t want to invest the time or money to fix it, a path down which you don’t want to travel. The water from a leaky pipe can cause the boards under your sink to rot. It can also cause mold growth and invite a variety of pests with which you don’t want to deal. A team of water removal experts will protect you from that issue and give you peace of mind.

Burst Pipes

A leaky pipe is one thing, but a burst pipe is even worse. If one of the pipes in your home burst, you could have a flooded basement or crawl space on your hands before you know what happened. Getting the water out of your home and fixing the pipe is only half the battle.

It’s important you address any water damage right away so that you can contain it in the early stages. Contacting a mold removal team is also a wise step in the right direction when you face this issue because a burst pipe creates an attractive environment for mold.

Flood Damage

Most people think a flood would never happen to them, but a flood can strike at any time. A few hours of heavy rain is all it takes to trigger a flood that causes countless damage to homes and property. If you want to reduce the damage and protect your property, act the second you have the opportunity because doing so saves you time and money over the long run. Rather than trying to tackle the threat on your own, turn to a trusted team of water removal professionals.

Understanding the Process

Now that you know when contacting an expert is wise, explore the ways experts address and solve the problem. This gives you an idea of how an expert will help protect your property from further damage, and you will be thrilled by the outcome. Professionals have tools and training to do the job right the first time and provide outstanding results to their clients.

Water Removal

Water removal is the first step in the restoration process and a vital aspect of damage control. Since water in your home can spread to other areas over time, removing water is a powerful step along the correct path. Your experts will begin by removing all furniture, appliances and electronics from the impacted area. They will then use equipment to dry the area and inspect it for signs of damage so that you can have peace of mind. If water comes in contact with your drywall, they remove and replace the impacted sections.

Mold Prevention

As far as mold removal is concerned, your experts will begin by sealing off the area to prevent mold spores from spreading to other parts of your home. Vacuums, air scrubbers and HEPA filters are among the tools used by mold removal professionals when they come into your home to solve your issue. While most people miss spots when trying to remove mold without help, a team of professionals uses a systematic process to contain the mold and let you breathe easy.

About Aloha Restoration

If you need water or mold removal services and don’t know where you should turn for help and caring support, Aloha Restoration has your back. They are a team of talented professionals who care about the communities they serve. The team will remove your water and have your home dry within 48 hours of calling them.

Working with Aloha Restoration puts your worries to rest because they have a proven record of success and dependability. When you enlist them to dry your home, they pay attention to each detail and have your back from start to finish. If you are ready to begin and get your home dry in no time, pick up your phone and give them a quick call.

How to Make the Best Decision When Choosing the Right Merchant Service Provider

No matter what size of business you are, choosing which merchant service provider would best suit your company can require some research and consideration. With so many options, it can seem overwhelming to just pick one, and many businesses often work with several providers because it opens up choices for their customers. However, with the right information, you can make a choice that will affect your company for the better.

Here are some things to consider when you are choosing the right merchant services for you.

What kind of pricing do they use?

It’s most likely that the type of payment method you choose will include the use of credit cards. When it comes to this type of payment, simple tends to be the best. A quick setup can get you started right away and provide you with the assets you need in order to conduct business efficiently while offering support to clients.

This means you will have to consider the pricing your chosen merchant service provider has and whether it works within your budget. This can be especially important for small business, who might have to choose between one or two options instead of several. The most common forms of pricing nowadays tend to be flat pricing or Interchange-Plus.

Much of which payment facilitator you use will depend on how much growth you see for your company over the next few years. A flat rate can be great for small companies that are unlikely to see additional locations open up, but for a company that is looking to expand, Interchange-Plus might be the way to go.

Are customers’ cards on file?

Most small businesses rely on loyal customers that return because of the quality of the product or service. Having clients’ cards on file might not seem like the most exciting aspect of choosing the right merchant services option, but it can make a big difference if you have a number of returning customers. It also makes it much simpler for you since you don’t have to re-enter important information when you know that it is safely stored within an app.

These merchant services providers also often offer additional services such as integrations with your software. This can make it easier to know which payments have been made, which are outstanding, and what purchases your customers have completed. It also makes it simpler for them to buy products or services since their info is already on file. If you have an ecommerce store, this can be especially helpful for client retention.

Having cards on file can also give you a leg up over the competition since you will have a better idea of which items in your store are selling well. You can see where you need to make changes or where you might need to incorporate advertising, as well.

In conclusion

Choosing the right merchant services can help your business to thrive, while also offering you the tools to continue growing as a company. With this in mind, you can choose a provider that offers you the support and tools you need in order to be successful as a small company.

What Every New Homeowner Should Be Aware Of

The key to financial independence can be staring at you, right there, unlocking your front door. New home owners will take great pleasure in paying towards their own equity for the roof over their head, as opposed to lining the pockets of landlords. Though this is a great first step to becoming free from financial burdens, there are many costs and potential profit that can go unforeseen. Here are a few tips for new homeowners in what to look out for, as well as how owning a home can be the key to an early retirement.

Ignorance is not bliss

Maintenance work and interest rates. Two things that can be neglected when renting an apartment, but can’t when owning a home.

Maintenance costs are often underestimated, with many seemingly minor issues getting overlooked “for next year”. The problem is, these issues become expensive when neglected. Staying on top of your home care with a fixed budget is smart, but it can be difficult to calculate, with any figure you settle on appears arbitrary. Well, the one percent rule isn’t a bad starting place, which states that the average maintenance cost is around 1% of a house: budgeting $4,000 per year for a $400,000 house.

Other factors may influence this budget by +-50%. If your home is brand new or was recently renovated, then this figure may be an overestimate. The opposite is true if the home is 100 years old, located in a flood-risk area or poorly looked after.

It is also worth bearing in mind that interest rates will not remain the same, which means budgeting for variable-rate mortgage repayments to potentially increase. To recover from the 2008 crisis, many countries have extremely low interest rates, but these are expected to creep back up. The US have already risen there’s gradually over the previous two years, with the UK’s forecasted to rise in late 2019.

Contracts over contacts

It’s no secret that most big projects can cost much more than is quoted or planned, we’ve all heard the horror stories. Flicking through your contact book to ask semi-skilled friends or having a go at it yourself can therefore be very tempting. Don’t be tempted.

Perhaps painting the spare bedroom or amending furniture can be great to try yourself, learning new skills and saving money. But fundamental repairs to the house should be treated with great respect, as your property is of great value as much as it is a home.

Tiling, electrics and plumbing are jobs that can tempt us into attempting but should be left to a professional. These jobs have very costly repercussions when they go wrong and can get messy very quickly such as rewiring a light switch or improperly installing sink.

Don’t get caught off guard

Maintenance costs and interest rates aren’t the only cost that can arise unexpectedly. Property taxes are usually based on a mixture of local tax rates and your property value, two things that are prone to change. This is worth accounting for in your budget when moving into a home, as rates vary greatly depending on location, but it is also worth noting that this expense will likely increase in the future with the same home. From 2000 to 2010 property taxes had almost doubled in the US, whilst in the UK, council tax rose from £26.6 billion to £28 billion in 2017.

It is also worth having your home independently valued by an estate agent or local builder. It is possible that you purchased your first home for either more or less than its value. This will guarantee that you are insuring your home for what it is worth, so you can avoid overpaying in premiums.

Locations that are prone to natural disasters often do not offer standard insurance that covers for flooding or sinkholes. It is important to understand what is covered, for which you can either seek out insurance with greater coverage, and if there is no option, save specifically for such an emergency.

Using your home to reach financial independence

For many who have early retirement or financial independence (FI) as a core goal in life, getting on the property ladder as soon as possible is a must. This is somewhat ironic, as FI enthusiasts often preach about avoiding debt at all costs; it must be remembered that FI and being free of rent and mortgage repayments is a long-term goal, with the home being a very important factor.

Whilst this may be a 20-year plan for some, the home can be used proactively to contribute towards this goal by being used as a revenue stream in the here and now.

One method of raising revenue using your home is to rent out a portion of it. This may include putting the spare bedroom on Airbnb with a nightly rate. Investing in some nice furniture and interior along with some salesmanship may provide a healthy passive income, which can really be lucrative in the summer. Additionally, taking this to the next step and building a suite for guests, perhaps a cabin in the garden or converting a garage may be a worthwhile investment with a better separation of living space.

If guests aren’t a passive-enough income for your personality or lifestyle, then renting out space may be a better option. If you have a large off-road space that can fit a RV or a boat, then it’s possible to rent this out for those who want somewhere to protect their vehicles from the weather. Renting a parking space in an urban area or near a large workplace can also be in great demand.

There are opportunities for some extra side-income for new homeowners, but these may be taken more seriously when striving for financial independence. Treating your first down-payment as an investment in yourself as much as it is a home can provide you with income opportunities. This approach may lead to the mortgage paying itself off, with a thoroughly planned budget to account for unpredictable expenses being equally as important.