How To Estimate Construction Costs

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. If you’re in the construction business, a key to your success will be estimating and managing costs. Doing so will ensure that your jobs are profitable. The following contributed post is entitled, How To Estimate Construction Costs.

* * *

Image credit.

If you are considering renovating your property, there are costs around every corner. Particularly if it is a large property which requires a lot of work, there is much to be done to budget your renovation without missing anything out. Working out the costs of labor, materials and time constraints takes organization and time, as well as patience and professional consultation. Here are some criteria to consider when planning construction work on your property!

The Nature of the Renovation

All renovations are unique in their needs, and in order to find an accurate estimate, you will first need to understand the nature of the renovation you want to undergo. Carefully plan what exactly needs to be done for the renovation, and the desired effect you want to achieve. In order to do this accurately, it is best you consult a contractor who can explain all that would need to be done for each stage of the renovation and how much it might cost.

The Materials

Many people are surprised by the cost of raw materials needed for a large renovation. Depending on the type of wood, metal and other materials you will need for the renovation, you may be charged less for a bulk amount of the material, and may be given discounts or deals based on the contractor you go through. Wood costs and the amount of wood needed are shown using Lumber Takeoffs which are professionally estimated by experts. This will give you the best accuracy for understanding how much material you will need, and how much it will all eventually cost.


Of course, any construction work will need manpower to implement it. Your contractor will help estimate how many construction workers you will need to complete the renovation, and for how long they will need to work. Manpower is a significant part of the operation which is often included in the price of construction, depending on the company you use.

Collateral Budget

In any construction work, things go awry that were unexpected. Perhaps the right materials are not available at a certain time, or something like the COVID-19 pandemic comes along and shuts the place down. Whatever it may be, your budget needs to include some money for collateral costs which you did not plan for. Without it, you could be stuck halfway through a construction project with no way of finishing it. This can be a nightmare scenario for any property owner who just wants to get the job done.


Construction costs do not have to sneak up on you when you least expect. While this happens much of the time, with proper organization and professional consultation, you can get an accurate estimate of your renovation costs which doesn’t leave you surprised and disappointed when the time comes to pay up.

Top Tips For Cutting Costs In Your Medical Practice

Two focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. A medical practice can be lucrative, but you have to know how manage costs. Managing you costs will assure that your practice stays open for years to come. The following contributed post is entitled, Top Tips For Cutting Costs In Your Medical Practice.

* * *

2020 so far has been a tough one for the medical industry. In fact, it is fair to say it has been one of the hardest-hit industries, with staff working flat out to deal with the pandemic, but also facing an uphill struggle trying to keep themselves safe and securing appropriate PPE. Whether privately owned or state-owned, the medical industry is going to have to do all it can to claw back some much-needed cash over the next few years.

While there are obvious things you can’t cut in order to provide the very best care to your patients, there are some things you can do to cut costs and make some savings to help your medical practice get through the next few months and years.

Image CC0 License

Think about outsourcing

More and more businesses are turning to outsourcing and that is because it is an effective and efficient business practise. Yes, it costs you money, but in the long-term, the savings it can create can be invaluable. It gives you time back to work on growing your medical practice and providing the best care to your patients and allows specialists to do the jobs to the best of their ability.

It can be difficult to know what to outsource – certain tasks are better than others. If you have a website, you might want to pass the management of it over to a web specialist who knows their stuff. Other options include your billing telehealth services, human resources and payroll.

Encourage remote working where possible

More and more medical practices have implemented remote working during the pandemic, taking video calls with patients rather than face to face interactions. It is a way of working that no one would have thought possible a few months ago in the medical industry, but many practices have found that not only is a great way of keeping staff and patients safe but is actually a really cost and time effective way of seeing patients.

Of course, not every single appointment can be done this way – there are still some people that will need to be seen, but think about whether remote working can be done as far as possible for as long as possible in your practice.

Reduce the necessities

The one thing the pandemic has done for us is to show us what is important and what isn’t. Take a look around you and think about what has remained unused or unneeded during the past few months. For example, if you have a fleet of company cars that have stayed in driveways or out in the parking lot, look at getting rid of them, or at least reducing the number of them. If those overseas business trips haven’t been missed, consider getting rid of them altogether, or streamlining the most essential ones.

The medical industry – and indeed, many other industries – are going to have a tough few years ahead of them, dealing with the economic and health fallout of the pandemic. By following these tips, you can make savings and get through it without too many problems.

Technology Is Finally Pushing Down Healthcare Costs. Thank Goodness

Two focuses of my blog are Health/Wellness and Technology. Many illnesses and conditions that made life unbearable a century ago are now treatable and curable due to technology. What’s also true is that our new medical technologies are driving down the costs of healthcare. The following contributed post is entitled, Technology Is Finally Pushing Down Healthcare Costs. Thank Goodness.

* * *

Experts evaluating the costs of healthcare tell us that it is nothing but up, up, up from here on out. The prices of advanced technology combined with an aging population mean that we have no choice but to bite the financial bullet. As the health of the nation deteriorates, the cost of medicine will go up. There’s no way around it.

But is this the whole truth? Is there really nothing we can do to push down the cost of healthcare?

Pixabay – CC0 License

It turns out that technology may hold the answer to the problem. While it is still early days, there are indications the tech – as applied to the medical industry – will likely have the same effect as it does everywhere else: namely, bringing costs down.

Telehealth Brings Down Costs Tremendously

Imagine if you could connect with a doctor and talk to them via the internet, no matter where you were in the world. A technology like that could dramatically bring down the costs of medicine.

Think about it. When doctors operate using telehealth systems, they no longer have to be tethered to an expensive clinic. Instead, they can work from wherever they like, eliminating transport and overhead costs. There’s no longer a need to charge fees to pay rent or anything like that. It is just a direct transfer of services via the world wide web.

Furthermore, Delaware County telehealth research indicates that there is no substantive difference between in-person and online appointments. Patients get the same quality of care, regardless. So could this be a technology of the future? Almost certainly.

Anti-Aging Medications Could Prevent Disease

Experts believe healthcare costs will spiral out of control in the coming years because of the aging population. As millennials retire, they will get all the same expensive health conditions as boomers, and the nation’s finances will deteriorate.

But that logic assumes that aging is an inexorable force we can do nothing about. It is not. In fact, there are already techniques that you can use to improve the chance that you will live considerably longer than otherwise.

Basics such as diet and exercise are one option. But researchers at Harvard and The University of California are making headway in their quest to find chemicals that tap into anti-aging pathways. You can already buy a bunch of supplements based on the technology through Amazon, and many of them stand a good chance of working. It is the closest thing we have right now to a fountain of youth.

Cheaper Diagnostics Improves Efficiency

Diagnosing patients is costly. Doctors have to take samples and then ship them to expensive labs where paid technicians carry out the tests. The whole process is long and time-consuming.

The emergence of cheap diagnostic devices, however, could change all that. Instead of requiring an entire lab, technology miniaturized it down to the size of a large office printer, thus reducing the cost. Physicians can then take samples, feed them into the machine, and get an output they can interpret for diagnosis.

Now, doesn’t that sound like a brighter future?

4 Tactics That Are Guaranteed To Lower The Running Costs Of Your Business!

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. A key to successfully running a business is keeping costs low. Doing so will ensure that your business will survive and thrive. The following contributed post is entitled, 4 Tactics That Are Guaranteed To Lower The Running Costs Of Your Business!

* * *

How much it costs you to run your business matters. After all, its money that comes out of your profits! That is why it is so vital that you keep the running costs of your business as low as possible. Something you can get some sound advice on in my post below.

Work from home


Working from home doesn’t just save you money, you can put your feet up as well!

First of all, you can save a whole heap of money by choosing to run your business from your very own home, rather than setting up formal premises. After all, you won’t have to pay for a lease or pay separately for utilities either, as this will be included in your home bill.

Happily, there is a vast range of business that can be run very efficiently from a home office. These include creative enterprises such as graphic design, illustration, and writing. Although you can be equally successful when working from home with more entrepreneurial options like reselling and setting up your own online store as well. Something that makes the lower-cost work from home option a smart move for many businesses.

Shop around for the lowest priced supplies

Next, if you are looking to reduce the running cost of your business, then you absolutely need to look at how much you are spending on office supplies. After all, even if you do choose to work from home, you will still need certain things to ensure you can complete the tasks you have.

To that end, shopping around for office basics like ink cartridges, paper, post-it notes, and folders at the lowest price you can find is crucial. In fact, by saving pence on a single unit of supplies for the office, you can actually accrue a considerable saving over just a year! Something that will ensure you have fewer cost to remove from your profits.

Understand your tax forms

No one is too keen on filling in tax forms for their business. However, doing so in the correct way can actually save you a lot of money. In fact, there are two ways that this can happen. The first is that if you correctly fill in your tax forms and return them on time, you will avoid having to pay a fine.

Secondly, many costs, including supplies, can be claimed on your tax form. Something that means they get taken off the final amount you will be taxed for. In fact, if you are working at home, you can even claim for part of your utility bills, thus saving your business even more money!

Outsource on demand

While it may be tempting to employ a large workforce, so every possible need is catered for, there is a more cost-efficient way of doing things. Its to outsource tasks you don’t specialize in or do not have time to complete, to someone else. This being an option that while costing money in the short term should save you over the long haul because you won’t have to pay out a salary to so many people.

Of course, fewer salary payments, and a reduction in the other running costs mentioned above means more profit for your business. Therefore you really can’t afford to ignore this guaranteed money-saving advice!

The Unexpected Costs Of Owning A Business

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. While it’s great to envisions all of the positives associated with owning a business, it’s important to consider the costs as well as they can come back to bite you. What are some of the unexpected costs of owning a business? The following contributed post is entitled, The Unexpected Costs Of Owning A Business.

* * *

Choosing to start a business is not a simple decision. Although it may seem like it is at the time, there is a lot that you need to consider before you get the ball rolling, from the support of your family to the extra workload. You’ll also need to work out the cost. No matter what others may say, owning a business is very rarely cheap, and there are often many more expenses than you initially realize. With that in mind, here are five unexpected ones that you’ll need to plan for.


1. Research Expenses
Before you can launch your new venture, you need to work out exactly what it is. While some people do decide to start a business knowing what they’re going to sell and who they’re going to sell it to, many others have absolutely no idea. If you’re with the latter crowd, you’ll need to conduct market research to give yourself some inspiration. This is something you can do yourself or delegate to a research agency, but, either way, it can end up costing you hundreds.


2. Employee Turnover
We all know that recruitment can cost you big, but what few realize is just how expensive losing the employees you recruit can be. As well as having to repeat the costs of hiring someone new, you may also need to pay extra to cover the additional workload in the meantime. For this reason, high employee turnover can wreak havoc on any company. Thankfully, if you offer a welcoming work environment and competitive benefits, new hires shouldn’t want to move on.

3. Product Shipping
Businesses who ship products to their customers rarely consider how much this can cost. In addition to packaging and postage, you may also need to invest in your own vehicle to transport goods and cover the costs that this will bring. Being on the road also runs the risk of an accident. That being said, a truck accident lawyer can help you get the compensation you deserve in this event. To cut shipping costs further, you can shop around for the best deals.

4. Inventory Shrinkage
Any business handling physical products has to face inventory shrinkage at some point. This occurs when your goods are damaged, stolen, or otherwise lost before they can be sold and delivered to customers. Unfortunately, there is no way to eliminate this worry completely, but there are several things that you can do to reduce it. These measures include improving product management and investing in better security, such as security cameras and guards.


5. Equipment Maintenance
We all understand we’ll need to invest in certain types of equipment to keep our businesses up and running. Computers, tablets, and other office technology is generally a must, but some enterprises require specialized and expensive tools too. While you’ll know to budget for these investments, you may not have planned for the cost of maintaining them. This helps to keep your equipment running smoothly, and is cheaper than replacing it, but still costly nonetheless.

In the world of business, money is everything, so make sure that you take care of yours by planning for the unexpected expenses listed above.

Cutting the Costs of Starting a Home Business

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy and Money, and Business and Enterepreneurship. If planned well and set up correctly, a home business can generate considerable profit. There are some important keys to keep in mind. The following contributed post is thus entitled; Cutting the Costs of Starting a Home Business.

* * *

Most of us have at some point considered starting a business. Sometimes, this is simply because we’re fed up with work. We see mistakes being made, we watch as businesses are poorly managed, and we know that if we had our chance, we could do a better job. On other occasions, our urge to start up on our own comes from necessity. We need more flexibility. We can’t find a job that gives us what we need and starting up on our own would answer all of our problems.

Whatever your reason for wanting to start a business of your own, one thing that might put you off, or at least give you cause for second thoughts is money. Starting a business from home doesn’t need to be as expensive as hiring premise, but there are still start-up costs to consider, especially if your business model is one that requires equipment, machinery and supplies. Here are some ways that you could slash some of the costs.

Buy Second Hand

Every business has needs. Whether it’s just a few supplies, a computer and other office paraphernalia, or tools, machines and equipment, you’ll need to spend money to get started. But, you can save a fortune by buying second hand and replacing things later, when your business is bringing in more money. Look for auction near me for tools, and consider refurbished laptops and other technology. Remember, we live in a world where businesses fail every day. These companies are keen to recoup some of their costs by selling what they can, so keep your eyes open for bargains.

Get Online

Marketing is often one of the most significant expenses for new companies. You need to get the word out and let people know what you do if you want to grow after all. But, in today’s digital-dominated world, there’s no need. Get online, spend time on digital marketing campaigns, work with influencers, and promote your business on social media. It’s perfectly possible to present a professional marketing campaign and reach a large audience without spending a penny.

Call in Some Favors

If you are looking to save as much money as you can, call in some favors. Tell your friends and family you are starting up on your own and they’ll be keen to help. Even if it’s just sharing your posts on social media, it can make a difference.

Make the Most of Your Time

If you want to save money, you should also be thinking about saving time. The more time that you waste, the less you’ve got to be out there finding ways to make money and grow your business. Manage your time well, and make the most of every working hour.

Go Green

Going green isn’t just good for the planet, it can also be good for your bank balance. Start saving money on utilities by printing less, turning lights off, shutting computers down and saving water, and your bills will be much cheaper.

Outsource Work

Staff are another big cost that you might need, but not be able to afford. Outsourcing work instead of taking on permanent employees means that you only pay for what you need, when you need it, instead of having to pay someone all of the time.

Finding The Financial Wiggle Room Your Business Needs

Two of the key focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy and Money, and Business and Entrepreneurship. No matter what your business idea is, figuring out how run a surplus is critical. Likewise many new businesses don’t last due to the poor management of costs. The following contributed post is thus entitled; Finding The Financial Wiggle Room Your Business Needs.

* * *

Are you feeling the costs starting to bite at your business? Are you risking your profits by letting your expenses go unchecked? Success in business isn’t just about creating the product and service the market needs and selling it to them effectively. You have to make the best use of the resources available to you, money most of all. To help give you more to make use of, we’re going to take a look at ways that you can cut the costs in your business.

Image Source: Pixabay

Consider relocating
Where does your business do its work? If you’re renting out office space, could it be more economical to downsize? Many teams are moving away from the traditional office space, entirely. For instance, a small team might be able to work just as effectively from home, connecting to one another via the internet in a remote working agreement. Otherwise, you might want to consider sharing your space to cut down in costs, too. Either you can look at the possibility of leasing out existing office space or moving your team into coworking spaces shared with other businesses, as well.

Be economic about your equipment
Every business has to invest in the right equipment to some degree. But you don’t always have to buy it at market value. When it comes to equipment like computers, monitors, printers, keyboards, speakers, and the like, you should look at the potential to lease that equipment. Buying might be more cost-effective in the long-term, but leasing can help you make immediate savings. If you want the best of both worlds, consider buying refurbished office equipment, as well. Second-hand has a bad reputation to some people but refurbished digital equipment is rigorously tested to ensure that it’s fit for purpose before purchase and often comes with a warranty. Otherwise, consider looking at second-hand office furniture, as well, to cut some of those costs.

Switch up your suppliers
Besides the one-time purchases you have to try and get a good deal on, like digital equipment and furniture, there is also the supply of goods that any office needs to keep running smoothly. In most cases, we’re talking about office materials like paper, stationery, printer supplies and the like. Your supplies may differ, but the strategy remains the same: don’t buy them at retail. Instead, getting cost-effective resources like cheap ink cartridges is all about finding the right supplier. You local printing store might be willing to negotiate a deal for a business account but if they’re not, you’re better at looking online and buying in bulk from industry suppliers.

Image Source: Christina Morillo

Rethink your hiring
One of the easiest ways to see your costs climbing way too high is to hire a new member to the team without the necessary consideration. Besides their pay, every employee comes with a lot of added cost. If you get over fifteen employees, for instance, you will find that providing some benefits becomes mandatory. What’s more, too many business owners employ people without really having enough work to justify creating that role. Instead, look at the possibility of outsourcing some of your workload. You get the benefits of hiring a professional, without all the hassle of going through recruitment, and the added pressure on your HR system. What’s more, you can consider making existing roles more streamlined by systemizing processes using things like automating software so that you and your team can get more productive, eliminating the need for another hire in the first place.

Balance your marketing
Almost all businesses are marketing in the digital world these days. It’s undoubtedly the most effective way to reach the largest audience possible. However, it’s not always worth the money. In particular, digital advertising might not be the most cost-effective way to use your advertising budget. Look at the differences between inbound marketing and outbound marketing. Outbound marketing, like advertising, involves paying a lot of money for a lot of short-term gain. If you’re not running a special sale or a launch event, you shouldn’t spend on short-term gain. Rather, inbound marketing, such as content marketing and social media marketing, costs a lot less (it can be entirely free if you’re willing to put the time into it) and lasts a lot longer.

Spend your energy wisely
When is the last time you took a real good look at your utility bill? Besides switching up your internet or electricity suppliers, the most effective way to reduce those bills is to reduce how much energy and water you’re using in the business. If you can handle the short-term expense, consider hiring a team to perform an energy audit. It’s an immediate cost, but it can highlight all the ways that your business is wasting energy and the policies and practices you can put into place to reduce that waste. Besides hiring an energy audit, there’s plenty you can do to reduce energy use yourself, such as installing LED light bulbs, ensuring that all digital equipment is turned off, rather than on standby, at the end of the day and such.

Image Source:

Take a chunk off your taxes
Most business owners don’t know the full range of tax deductions that they could be entitled to. You can deduct gross receipts tax, payroll tax, sales tax, gasoline tax, and much more. To be eligible for a deduction, expenses have to be solely for the business, however. For instance, a home business owner might not be able to deduct the full cost of a new PC if, for instance, they also use it to stream movies or have other personal uses for it. If you want to make the most deductions without getting the ire of the IRS, it’s recommended to work with a qualified accountant.

A careful balance has to be struck when it comes to cutting costs in the business. You want to free the money you need to reinvest and to grow the business, but if you end up cutting too much, it will impact your services and your customers could turn against you. Scale costs responsibly, starting by reducing instead of cutting and with the most unnecessary costs first.

How To Beat The High Co$t of Living

Two major focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money, and Wealth Building. A key part of both of these areas is budgeting, planning and controlling costs. The following contributed post is thus entitled; How To Beat The High Co$t of Living.

* * *

(image source)

Another day, another bill. Another day, another dip in the bank balance. Another day, another moment when you wonder how you are going to cope with the rise in energy prices, bank charges, insurance costs, and more.

Rather than confront another day like yesterday, we wouldn’t be surprised if you huddled under your duvet in the morning, fearful of losing yet more money simply by going about your daily life.

Don’t despair! It is possible to beat the high cost of living, but you are going to have to work at it. You can put the ideas we give you in this article into your five-year plan, or better yet, your yearly planner. You see, you don’t have to let the financial aspects of your life get on top of you.

For starters, quit those bad habits that are eating away at your monthly income. Not only will you have more money in your pocket, but you will feel better as well. We are thinking of smoking and drinking alcohol, two expensive habits that are harmful to your health. We are thinking about watching too much tv; despite the many wonderful things to watch (and the utter drivel), you will save on your electricity bill if you spend time doing other things, such as (dare we say it), exercise! And quit your spending addiction. If you’re forever buying things you don’t need, then it’s little wonder you have no money for the essentials in your life. Put that credit card away!

Don’t let your utility companies take more money than they should. They are forever putting their prices up, but you are in your right to ditch them. You can get the same gas and electricity from another supplier, so use a price comparison service to find a cheaper deal. After switching, instill good habits around the home to make further energy savings. We have already told you to stop watching so much tv, but there are further ways to save money. Ensure your family are up to speed with your energy-saving habits as well, because as you know, they can often be responsible for draining your bank account!

Cut down the cost of driving too. For starters, don’t use your car if you are only travelling short distances. Why waste money on fuel when you can save money (and feel healthier) by using your two legs. As with your utility companies, use a price comparison site to save on your insurance. We use this site,, but there are there are plenty of others available. Then practice safe driving. You see, the less reckless you are on the road, the less likely you are to do damage to your vehicle, and the less likely you are to pay out on huge maintenance bills. Driving safely saves money on fuel too!

Don’t let your bank take you for a ride. If they are charging you monthly fees just for having an account with them, it’s hardly fair! As with some of the other things on this list, you can do yourself a favour by ditching those banks who are inflicting damage on your account and transferring to another. You should be able to find lower rates and fees, and may even get rewarded for making the switch too. Check out this banking guide as a way to make the most of your money.

You can beat the high cost of living by making changes in your life, and by doing your homework into finding cheaper alternatives to the people who take your money away from you. So, don’t delay, start to make savings today, and continue to practice good habits and price comparisons in the months and years to come. It does make perfect financial sense, after all!