There’s A Rocky Road Ahead. How Will You Take Back Control Of Your Finances?

Two of the focuses of my blog are Current Events and Financial Literacy/Money. Sometimes there are global and systemic events that have the potential to throw our personal finances into chaos. At the time of this blog post going live, the world is going through such an event with the Coronavirus/Covid-19 Pandemic. Everyone must come up with a plan for survival during this and other crises. The following contributed post is entitled, There’s A Rocky Road Ahead. How Will You Take Back Control Of Your Finances?

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As governments and markets around the world respond to the healthcare and economic implications of the coronavirus, it’s safe to say that most of us have a rocky economic road ahead. Already, many of us are learning that no job is as stable as we thought. No employer is as untouchable as we assumed and that the gig economy has no emergency exit. For many of us, joblessness is a very real and imminent prospect, and many more will face a reduction in their gross salaries at the very least. But in this digitally interconnected age, none of us are powerless. Each of us has the tools at our disposal to make money safely, grow our income and take back control of our finances, whatever capricious twists and turns economic forces may bring.

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Here we’ll look at some ways in which you can make a little extra money and regain control of your finances without even leaving your home…

Start your own dropshipping business

In this uncertain time, it’s likely that more and more people will increase the amount of online shopping they do. While high street stores may have already begun to close their doors, there’s a potential e-commerce boom on the horizon. And that means great opportunity for the quick witted and the enterprising. Dropshipping is a popular way to start a home business as it has the potential to start making money quickly with few or even zero overhead costs. Dropshippers buy items as and when needed and sell them directly to the consumer via trusted online channels, meaning that there are no warehousing costs involved and no liquidity tied up in stock that just sits untouched on the shelf.

Try out trading

In the current landscape, there are a wide range of economic forces in a state of flux. But even here there’s potential opportunity for the savvy investor. Of course, with any kind of investment comes a degree of risk. Nonetheless, with a wide range of digital trading platforms like Targets Trading Pro available, you can start out trading and get to know the futures markets with minimal risk. Invest small while you get a feel for the markets, then as you grow more confident and informed you can grow your investment in direct proportion to your confidence.

Jump on the affiliate marketing bandwagon

If you already have a blog, a YouTube channel, a successful Instagram account or any other kind of robust online presence, you might want to think about joining the fast-growing and eminently profitable world of affiliate marketing. With a potential rise in ecommerce on the horizon and a period of potential uncertainty it’s likely that people will gravitate towards trusted brands. Affiliate marketers make money on purchases made by their followers from brands that they already know and trust. Joining an affiliate scheme is easy, low risk and potentially very rewarding. Here are some of the best ones which you can try right now.

Who knows what the future will bring. But the tools above can help you to stay proactive and ahead of the curve, enabling you to take control of your finances and insulate your household from financial risk.

Five Issues That Will Put Your Finances Through The Wringer

A key focus of my blog is Financial Literacy/Money. There are a couple of keys to properly managing your personal finances. There are also things you can do to destroy your personal finances. The following contributed post is entitled, Five Issues That Will Put Your Finances Through The Wringer.

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Are you worried about your finances? It doesn’t matter how much you earn, financial trouble is something that keeps a lot of people up at night. Here are some of the biggest issues that you need to be prepared for.

Unemployment

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If you’re looking for one of the worst issues that can hit your finances harder than you would like, turn your attention to the possibility of unemployment. The danger can be catastrophic. If you are made redundant you will typically struggle to be able to afford even basic costs let alone things like rent or your mortgage. So, you will need to work to find a replacement job as quickly as possible. But that’s not easy and if you have been off the job market for a while it can be difficult to find your footing. That’s why you need to make sure that you are keeping your CV up to date. Even if you think your job is safe, keep that ear on the ground and make sure you are aware of new opportunities.

Lawsuit

You would probably like to believe that a lawsuit isn’t going to be that expensive. Well, it depends what legal issue you are facing and whether you the defendant or the claimant. When you look for a criminal defense law firm to represent you, you should always think about your budget and what you can afford. Even then though, most people are going to find they need to take out a loan to pay the costs. That’s just a fact of life. Hopefully, you will at least get a positive outcome. Don’t forget though even if you are the claimant some of the damages will go towards your lawyer. The good news is that you can use some of your winnings to pay the cost of the lawsuit. However, this is why many people will avoid a lawsuit completely unless they have a lot to gain.

Divorce

You also need to consider the issue of divorce. The Oscar-nominated film Marriage Story actually provided a brilliant example of how tricky a divorce can be and how hard it can hit your finances. At one point Adam Driver’s character states it doesn’t matter whether his wife seeks profits from a new business venture because there’s going to be nothing left of it. When it comes to divorce you also tend to get what you pay for. Driver’s character initially seeks a high paid lawyer and then decides to save money. However, when the divorce proceedings begin he’s gone back to the high paid lawyer to get the best chances of winning the case. If you want to keep the cost of divorce under control. The best option is to make sure that you try and keep the proceeding as clean as possible. Make sure that it is amicable and then there will be no need for high-cost lawyers.

Theft, Fire And Other Damage

If your home or business is impacted by fire, theft or any damage like this, then it’s always going to hit your finances quite hard. That’s why it’s useful to ensure that you have the right insurance plan in place. When you choose an insurance plan make sure you are fully aware of what is and isn’t covered. You don’t want any surprises to creep up on you here. You should also think about putting the right measures to protect your home. If you’re thinking about theft, you should make sure that you are exploring various options. For instance, CCTV cameras will make it far less likely that your home is chosen for a break-in. Remember, these crimes aren’t typically planned in advance so the right deterrents can save you the trouble here.

Bad Investment

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Finally, do consider the issue of poor investments. Bad investments will knock you down and make it struggle to get back on your feet. If you face a bad investment, then you need to think about whether you can take action to reduce the loss. Selling even when you are at a low point can be the right choice rather than letting the value drain away completely. To avoid the risk of bad investments, never invest more than you can afford to lose. In this way, investing is very similar to gambling. But you should be taking calculated risks rather than throwing it all on black.

We hope this helps you understand some of the biggest issues that you can experience with your finances and how to handle them the right way. Take this advice you don’t have to let these issues cripple your bank account.

Business Finances: Simplified

Two of the key focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Keys to successfully running any business or enterprise is: sound money management, control of cashflow and control of expenses. The following contributed post is thus entitled; Business Finances: Simplified.

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As a business owner, you will likely find there are countless demands on your time. However, there is one demand that is undeniably the most important of all: sound financial management.

The financial state of a business is, after all, the dividing line between business success and failure. While it is undeniably important to think about the future, plan for growth, assess your competitors, keep your staff happy and so on and so forth, without good finances underpinning your company, all of these tasks are rendered irrelevant. Finances are everything… but they are also incredibly complex.

This is far from an ideal solution: the finances relating to your business are important, but they are also confusing, detailed, and in need of constant nurturing. It could be argued that dedicating all your time to good financial management would mean you had relatively little time to do anything else – so how can you cope with the demands of the rest of your business, and managing the finances of that business?

There is, thankfully, an answer to this question: you simplify your business’ financial management; and below, we’ve put together a few ideas that can help you achieve this goal.

#1 – Reduce the number of companies you make payments to

A standard business could find themselves making payments to individual providers for the following products:

● Gas
● Electricity
● Your business cellphone
● Internet service
● Business insurance
● Liability insurance

This means that – at a minimum – you may find yourself juggling six different providers just to establish the basics of your business. That’s six different companies you have to research prior to purchasing, six different account numbers, six different provider terms and conditions, six different customer service phone numbers to remember in case things go wrong, six different monthly direct debits – and that’s just the bare minimum.

Such a scenario is all too common, and it is the enemy of simplified finances. Instead, look for providers that offer a range of services; you could buy your cell phone plan and landline from the same company, click here to find out more about companies that can provide more than one type of business insurance, and group together your utility needs under a multi-fuel account. These measures would halve the number of companies you have to research and deal with, greatly simplifying the management of your outgoing costs as a result.

#2 – Note every single purchase you make

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Imagine a scenario where you use your business credit card to make a stationery purchase. You’re busy, so you make the payment, tuck the receipt in your wallet – or archive the receipt email, if shopping online – and move on with your day, assuming you’ll record the transaction in greater depth at a later date.

There is, of course, a chance you’ll do just that – but running a business is demanding, and there’s an equal chance you’ll forget to do so. This means you’re effectively storing up a problem; a moment when you’ll study a bill, or go through your tax-deductible expenses, and be completely unable to recall the transaction. In the best case scenario, you’ll be able to find the receipt and track back, but even then, you’ve still spent more time than necessary on a small task.

Instead, record the following details about every purchase you make for your business:

● The amount of the payment
● The payment method you used; i.e. debit card, credit card, or cash
● The purpose for the payment
● The payment recipient
● The date of the transaction

You can then set a reminder on your phone to input the transaction into the relevant records and file the receipt for safekeeping as soon as is convenient.

#3 – Schedule account debits for the same time every month

If recurring outgoing payments debit from your account throughout the month, life can get confusing very quickly. You may find that you have to run the numbers and check you have the funds you need to cover future payments every time you wish to make a non-recurring payment or debit, which is far from ideal.

To avoid this, set up all of your recurring payments for a single day every month – ideally the first, as this remains the same date every month. You may find that you need to pay more for the first month on a new payment plan to change the dates, but this is well worth doing in order to achieve a more streamlined approach in future.

#4 – Use a “traffic light” system for financial tasks

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When managing your business finances, it can often feel like you have a plethora of tasks demanding your time – you have to make payments to suppliers, manage your receipts, balance the books, issue customer refunds, and many more besides. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, implement a “traffic light” system.

To do this, start by making a list of all the financial tasks that are demanding your attention.

● Red: tasks that must be completed as soon as possible, with potentially severe ramifications – such as fines or fees – if they are late.
● Amber: tasks that must be completed as soon as possible, but that will not result in financial ramifications if they are not completed immediately.
● Green: tasks that are important, but that are without a pressing deadline or a set point at which they have to be completed.
● Any task that does not fit into one of these three categories should be set aside to be perused at a later date or potentially discarded entirely.

When every task is assigned a color, you can then begin to work through them in order of priority: red, then amber, then green, accomplishing as many as possible in the time you have available.

In conclusion

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For your business to succeed, your financial management has to be excellent – but without consuming your entire schedule. If you give the tips above a try, you should find that you’re able to streamline your finances and exert positive control, while still managing to leave plenty of time for other business-related tasks. Good luck!