Reduce Business Downtime to Save Time and Money

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. A key to any business operation is increasing productivity and efficiencies. Doing so will increase the likelihood of staying viable and outlasting your competitors. The following contributed post is entitled, Reduce Business Downtime to Save Time and Money.

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Downtime for your business can cause all sorts of problems. Your business can waste time and money while you’re trying to get back to normal, and it can even damage your reputation if you’re not available to your customers. When you’re experiencing a lot of downtime, it can have a significant effect on your business, and it won’t be a positive one. By reducing the amount of downtime your business experiences, you can improve productivity, save time and money, and boost your business reputation with your customers too. Here are some of the ways you can start reducing downtime so your business can run more smoothly.

Get the Right IT Support

In any modern business, experiencing IT problems will often mean that the whole company comes to a halt. Severe disruptions can occur if certain things aren’t working as they should, interrupting the systems that the business relies on. One of the smartest ways to deal with this problem is to ensure you have the right IT support. For many businesses, especially smaller ones that can’t afford large IT departments, managed IT services are an excellent choice. If you visit the fidelis website at fidelisnw.com, you can see how one company can provide managed services that keep your business going. With managed IT support, you can concentrate on other areas of your business.

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Perform Preventative Maintenance

The most significant disruptions to your business can be caused by sudden problems resulting from equipment that stops working. Whether it’s office equipment or manufacturing equipment, you don’t want your business operations to stop suddenly because essential equipment isn’t available. If you want to avoid this type of thing happening, preventative maintenance is the best option. You need to ensure regular maintenance of key equipment so that any problems can be taken care of long before they can cause disruption to your business.

Have a Solid Continuity Plan

Any company should have a continuity plan. Your business continuity plan will set out what happens if something goes wrong, and your business experiences downtime. It might outline some of the things that are expected to happen automatically, like a backup power generator kicking in, as well as what your staff members are expected to do. Your business continuity plan will cover different areas of the business and provide a step-by-step action plan for how to deal with any periods of downtime. The aim is to get your business back up and running as quickly as possible.

Prepare Your Staff

Part of developing a continuity plan for your business can be ensuring your staff knows what they need to do when something goes wrong. Walking them through their roles and how everything should happen if there’s a problem will make everything run more smoothly when the time comes. It can also help to identify any flaws or difficulties in your continuity plan so that it can be optimized before it needs to be put into action.

Reduce downtime for your business, and you will be able to save both time and money. You can improve productivity and preserve your reputation by being prepared.

How To Save Money When Buying Property

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Whether it’s your primary residence or an investment property, a key is to save money when buy your property of interest. Doing so will make whatever your intended purpose for the property is. The following contributed post is entitled, How To Save Money When Buying Property.

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Image Credit Pixabay.com License CC0

There are many different ways that you can buy a property. When it comes to choosing a home for yourself and your family, you will no doubt have a number of different requirements that you will be looking for. The house will need to be located somewhere that suits your needs. Whether that means that it is an easy commute to your place of work, or is close to friends and family, there will always be concerns that surround your preferred choice of property.

But often, one major factor that plays into your decision making is the financial aspect. You will no doubt want to get the most house for the least money. That means having a home that meets all of your needs, for as little as possible.

Here are some ways that you can look at spending less on your property.

Buy Land And Develop

If you have the time, patience, and the willingness to put in a lot of hard work, you could buy a piece of land such as the ones found on the wyndham ridge estate and then build your own home. Of course, you will need to engage an architect and a builder to help you realize your dreams unless of course, you have these skills yourself.

You would obviously need to price up the entire project before you could commit to it, but in theory, you could save yourself some money and have a much better home.

Restore A Property

When a house falls into a state of disrepair, it will rapidly lose its value. So, if you come to buy a home that is in poor condition, you will be getting the potential for a much better home, for much less.

If you are willing and able to work to restore a run-down property, then there are some real savings for you. Get a survey carried out of the entire property and use that information to help you to prioritize tasks. There may be unseen structural problems that should be addressed before anything else.

Buy A Property Before It Is Built

Many property developers will be looking to sell homes that they are yet to build. They want a very quick turnaround on any houses, and it often helps them if they have sold the property before they even break ground.

Look for developments opening up in the area that you are interested in living. Often, many homes will be built at the same time. You’ll be able to view floor plans and artist impressions of how the home will look once built. Often, the developers will build a show home first, which they can use for selling other properties that follow the same design.

Of course, buying a new home will come with its issues. Once the home is completed, you may need to call the builders back to carry out remedial works on any snagging issues that you may find. This is quite normal, but it is something that you should be aware of.

Your Business Is In Debt. Now What?

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. While debt can be an important tool in business, it can also be a danger if misused. What do you do if you business goes into debt? The following contributed post is entitled, Your Business Is In Debt. Now What?

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If your business is in serious debt, it can cause an enormous amount of stress and misery. You may wonder what your options are and what you can do to turn the situation around. In this article, we’re going to take a look at some frequently asked questions so that you have the knowledge you need to proceed if the bailiffs come knocking.

What Are My Options If My Bank Calls In My Business Overdraft?

Many businesses rely on their business overdrafts to provide them with the capital that they need to survive. Unfortunately, some banks can demand that you pay back the entire overdraft immediately, not giving you any time to actually earn the money you need. If you don’t pay back the money you owe, then you can lose access to your account altogether. The best strategy in this situation is to go to another bank and open a new account, or open a separate account right now with an overdraft facility if you think your bank may shut your account.

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Can I Get Debt Counselling?

Debt counseling business services help you reduce stress, manage your finances, and work out whether you can afford to repay the money you owe long term. Through the debt counseling process, some people discover that they can no longer sustain their businesses and have to shut them down. Others realize that they can better manage their money for a happier, more productive working life.

Can My Landlord Change The Locks On My Business Premises?

The rules for business premises are different from those for your private residence. A landlord can evict you immediately from commercial premises if you fail to pay the rent. They are also allowed to change the locks, but in most cases, they must apply to the court first to do this.

What Happens If I Cannot Pay An Employee?

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In most cases, you have up to fourteen days to pay an employee any money that you owe them. If you can’t pay them because you don’t have the money to do so in your business account, then you must make alternative arrangements. Most business owners will try to come to some resolution with employees, paying them through installments if and when the money comes through.

Can Debt Collection Agencies Take Your Tools And Business Property To Repay A Debt?

Debt collection agencies are not the same as bailiffs. They do not have the right to force entry into your property and take your possessions. Usually, companies will hire debt collection agencies if you’ve missed a payment or two. After that, they may then pass the matter onto the courts and bailiffs who may decide that they can take possessions from you by force.

Can I Still Have A Bank Account If I Go Bankrupt?

In general, the answer is yes, but these accounts tend to be very basic. It’s unlikely that you’ll get an overdraft facility or the option to borrow money. You’ll also probably have to stick with a debit account.

Making Money From Your Craft Skills

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Do you have a craft that you think can make money for you? If so you can create a potential income stream for yourself as customers will spend money for unique crafts that they see value in. The following contributed post is entitled, Making Money From Your Craft Skills.

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Image Credit Pixabay.com License CC0

If you have a creative skill that you do not make the best use out of, why not find a way of starting a small business that you can run in your spare time in order to make some money from your skills? There is no need to hide your talents when there are lots of opportunities to take these items out to a wide range of people who may be interested in buying them for gifts or for their own homes.

It has never been easier to make money off the creative skills that you possess, and not only will you hopefully find a nice extra source of revenue, but you will also enjoy the experience of creating and find that it makes you feel great.

Set Up A Stall In A Craft Fair Or Christmas Market

An excellent opportunity to sell your items would be to set up a stall in a craft fair or a Christmas market. There are plenty of openings for stalls in these types of events and it is worth doing some research online to find out what is available in your local area.

Once you have found a market that you can join, you will need to create a stall. Buy a hop-up display if you would like to create a more professional look. Use the signage to highlight your products and services as well as including your name and any brand that you would like to create associated with your crafts. Make sure it is eye catching and professionally designed.

Christmas markets have boomed in popularity in recent years and you will find that there are a lot of people who will be looking for gifts for their loved ones. This is a great opportunity for you to make some real sales. Start looking for a stall as early as possible as these events can be very popular.

Make sure that when you run your stall that you are focused on providing great customer service. Often, the thing that seals the deal when it comes to selling craft products is the service that you deliver. People like to know a bit about who made the item as it adds to the product that you have made.

Set Up An Etsy Store

Online marketplaces such as Etsy are a great place for you to sell your crafting goods. Stores are very easy to create and you can upload descriptions and photos of your products in order to attract customers in.

Getting your items onto your store is only half of the work though. You will need to market your Etsy store through the use of social media. This can be a lot of work and you will need to build up followings on major sites such as Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest in order to attract some interest in your items.

Sales will take some time to rise on your Etsy store so have a long term strategy and keep working at it. The important aspect of doing this is that you enjoy the work that you are creating though, so ensure you retain that passion.

How To Make Money From Your Property

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Real estate is currently one of the most lucrative investment classes out there. There are numerous ways to make money by owning a property and the only limitation is the owner’s creativity. The following contributed post is entitled, How To Make Money From Your Property.

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Being able to make money from your property is something that many of us can likely do depending on a few factors. To make a bit of extra cash here and there can be very beneficial for our household savings, so here’s how to make money from your property.

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Start Growing And Selling Produce

If you’re a bit of a green thumb in the garden, then there might be a business in what you are successfully able to grow. In this world, where we’re trying to be more sustainable in order to help and support the environment, people will likely want to buy locally. This is because it’s more sustainable and kinder on the environment when you’re getting your fresh produce from a few doors down. First, you want to figure out exactly what you can sell and preferably, you want food and herbs that are going to be quick to grow and harvest. You may also have quite a bit of land to work with and so having somewhat of a farm might be a useful business to operate on the side of your full-time job. It’s important that if you start expanding beyond selling locally, then you may need to get clued up with some Agriculture lawyers who can give you advice on contracts, etc.

Rent Out A Room

You might have quite a big-sized property, so big in fact that you have too much to make use of. Renting out your space has now become very profitable after the creation of sites like Airbnb, which lets pretty much anyone put up a room or home as a holiday let. If you want though and have a freehold property, you could rent out a room. This can be done directly with yourself, or you might want to let a property agent sort it all out with no real effort needed from yourself. As long as you’re happy sharing or if it’s the whole property, coming to terms with it never being the same as how you had it, it’s worth doing. Some tenants might damage the property by accident, so there’s always that which needs thinking about in regard to the extra expenditures you might need to make further down the line.

Create A Side Hustle

A side hustle is something you do to make money on the side of your current job. It might be from a hobby that you currently have and which you can transform into a money-making venture. Being able to create a side hustle is exciting because you end up having control over what you create or produce and you become a one-man band, doing everything that’s involved with running a business. Whether you’re selling handmade items on Etsy or running an online blog that works with brands, having something on the side can provide you with that little extra income that you or your household might need in emergencies. Side hustles can often also turn into full-time ventures if you work hard enough.

Sell It As An Event Space

Your home might be very functional in terms of a space to hold events. It could be unique enough to be the set of a film or television show. Or a place for fashion companies and brands to shoot their own content for business. So there are plenty of opportunities where your home can become an event space or an opportunity for a company to come in and use it to feature their services or products. As a homeowner, this can be a very interesting experience because you get to see your home being used in a different light while making money off others who require your space. There are plenty of people out there that might need your home for a day or two, so take advantage of what’s online so that you can benefit from using your home as a place for others to do business.

Making money from your property is one benefit that’s come from the modern-day world that we now live in. Now that we have access to so many more resources, we have the opportunity to be able to do more. We can create side hustles and businesses from the comfort of our home. We’re able to feature our homes as event spaces, filming opportunities and even to rent it out through online holiday accommodation sites. So if you need a little extra income, take a look at what your property might be able to offer you as an income.

A full-time income on part-time hours revisited part two: Motivations for joining the business

“When my job told me that I’d have to go back to school to get another degree in order to get a promotion, I didn’t want to do that!”

This is part two of my series entitled, A full-time income on part-time hours revisited. Part one of this series introduced Multi-Level Network Marketing businesses (MLMs). Part two will discuss the motivations of people who join these types of businesses.

“Bruce, I want to ask your opinion about a business informational meeting I recently attended. This group helps people get out of their financial debt, but they also aggressively recruit more people into their business,” I said in a discussion with talk show host Bruce Williams in 2007. “It sounds like I could make a lot of money if I join. It also sounds like pretty hefty commitment time-wise, one that I’m not sure that I can fulfill in tandem with my scientific research.”

“What you just described sounds like a Multi-Level Network Marketing company,” Bruce casually commented in his burly, grandfatherly voice. Bruce Williams’ talk show covered a range of topics including politics, current events, economics (personal finance and business), as well as life’s daily issues. “Look guy, I don’t know what it is that they’re selling, but I think you’ll be better off focusing your time and attention to launching your career in science!”

Everyone’s motivation for going into to business is to make money. Unfortunately, not everyone can cook, invent a social media site that will change the world, create a new operating system, or buy a McDonald’s franchise, coincidentally the one franchise often referenced in the Rich Dad Poor Dad books and in Network Marketing informational meetings. It’s not uncommon at a meeting to hear, “McDonald’s may not make the best hamburger, but they are the model franchise,” or something similar. Many also state that, “McDonald’s isn’t in the business of fast food, they’re in the business of real estate,” or something to that effect.

Likewise, Multi-Level Network Marking businesses offer the opportunity to start a business with only a little money down (usually $100-$500), and the potential to make more money than one could ever make on their job through generation of ‘passive residual incomes’. At least that’s how they’re sold. In terms of making money in your sleep which passive income empowers you to do, who wouldn’t want to do that? By the way, business models that are already set up and only require you to buy into them are called ‘turnkey businesses’. Michael E. Gerber has written several books about this, the most popular is entitled, The E-Myth.

The thought of making passive residual incomes is very enticing for people who understand what it is and represents. Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad books were my first introduction to this powerful concept, and I recommend at least reading his first two books. The second is entitled, Cashflow Quadrant. Robert’s books also introduced me to the idea of making money ‘exponentially’ instead of ‘linearly’.

Whatever your venture is, the more passive income you can earn, the closer you come to financial freedom. This is the perfect segue into the time factor. What also gets people’s mouths salivating is the potential to not have to punch a clock, go to an office, and answer to a supervisor. These businesses are also seen as ways of circumventing battling for promotions every year and having to work your way up the corporate ladder as they say. As Robert Kiyosaki says in his books, and as many people have personally experienced, promotions often don’t result in significantly more income for various reasons.

Personally, people have multiple reasons for joining. Some people who have held traditional jobs and careers, eventually sour on a life of having to “climb the corporate ladder” as described above. Some sour on having to be chosen for promotions which often results in more responsibility but not necessarily significantly more take home pay. Others have reached middle age and don’t see themselves being able to retire on what they’ve saved or haven’t saved.

“When my job told me that I’d have to go back to school to get another degree in order to get a promotion, I didn’t want to do that. This business is allowing me to make larger sums of income than my job could ever offer and save for my retirement,” the speaker at a meeting said. Finally, others don’t like the idea of having to go back to school to get more degrees in order to qualify for promotions in their respective organization.

And those are just educated people. Some people haven’t gone very far school-wise for any number of reasons and don’t have the potential to ascend in any job long-term. These businesses thus represent a fast track to wealth which can bypass a traditional education.

“My mother who is deaf and some of her friends weren’t very educated and they saw the business as one of the only ways they could make good money,” a friend shared with me. Her mother got involved in a home-based business that sold water purifiers and they had to go door to door to sell them.

In general, these businesses are ways for people to:

• Achieve financial independence
• Have more control over their lives
• Bypass the traditional paradigm of working for someone else to make money – trading money for time every day

While the benefits of joining like this type of enterprise seem to be limitless, what happens when you pay your entrance fee and sign on the dotted line? And when one does join, what are the actual rigors and expectations? These questions will be addressed in part three of this series.

Thank you for reading this blog post. If you enjoyed this piece, you might also enjoy:

Are you getting your Matching Contribution? A discussion on saving for retirement
A look at the Law of Compounding Interest and why you should care
Your Net Worth, your Gross Salary, and what they mean
Is there power in budgeting your money?
I still don’t have a car in 2018: A story about playing financial chess
We should’ve bought Facebook and Bitcoin stock: An investing story

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Why You Should Manage Your Money Ethically

A key focus of my blog is Financial Literacy/Money. Something that’s rarely associated with money management is ethics. Do the two go together? Who decides what ethical money management is? The following contributed post is entitled, Why You Should Manage Your Money Ethically.

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Image Credit: Pixabay CC0 Licence

Ethical money management is a pretty niche topic but it’s something we should be talking about more. How we spend and how we manage our money has a big impact, not just on our own fates, but those around us. Indeed, the American dream is just that: a dream that is unlikely to become a reality for more than a lucky few.

When the world’s 26 richest people have roughly the same amount of wealth between them as the poorest 3.8 billion, there is a serious problem and the inequality is growing every day. But, while you might like to think that this has nothing to do with you, the reality is that everyone has spending power and your ethical practice matters just as much as a billionaire’s.

Taxes and Compliance

Paying your taxes comes first and foremost in ethical money management. Tax can be incredibly controversial and while some people believe in lower taxes and greater individual spending, others prefer a higher tax rate with more community services and assets.

You must also make sure that you comply with any relevant laws. Most compliance applies to business owners but some laws apply to individuals too. For example, you should declare any interests overseas through the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program OVDP. Whether you believe in high or low taxes and whether or not you agree with the law, this is a basic requirement for ethical money management.

Considerate Shopping

Ethics and shopping are often difficult to navigate together. As shoppers drive down prices, the conditions of manufacturing workers diminish, unsustainable practices aren’t challenged and, ultimately, everyone is worse off as products don’t last as long as they should. But considerate shopping is easier than you might think if you are willing to put some time into research.

Considerate shopping often comes down to the difference between frugal and cheap. Someone frugal will do their research, buy good quality, fair trade and sustainable products but might wait until the sales. Someone cheap doesn’t care how something was made or whether it is good quality – they are just interested in saving money no matter what.

Ethical Investments

Ethical investments require a bit of research too though you can find funds that are dedicated to ethical investments alone. Choosing ethical investments can be difficult, though. Some unsavoury companies have been known to present themselves as ethical and then be anything but. However, this shouldn’t put you off trying to uphold your values.

The best way to get started is to research the areas you are most interested in. For example, if you are particularly interested in the environment, you should look for investment opportunities that align with your beliefs. Remember: you’re not going to find a perfect opportunity so you will need to think carefully about what is most important to you.

Ethical money management is perfectly possible as long as you are willing to do some research and think carefully about where you put your money. Ethics are never clear cut, so see this as a chance to grow, not a one-off.

Finding Better Ways To Use Your Money

A key focus of my blog is Financial Literacy/Money. According to talk show host and writer Dave Ramsey, wise money management is 20% head knowledge and 80% behavior. While the smaller percentage of the two, the 20% is critical though. The following contributed post is entitled, Finding Better Ways To Use Your Money.

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Money management isn’t a talent that comes naturally to everyone. If you feel that you don’t live life in a fiscally responsible manner, however, then there are things you can do about that. It’s never too late to make an improvement to your personal finances. It all comes down to spending and saving your money in a well-balanced way, at the end of the day. You don’t want to save everything – certain expenses are unavoidable, anyway. But you also don’t want to waste your earnings. It’s time to find better ways to use your money, and here are some helpful suggestions.

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Reduce unnecessary expenditures.
The best way to use your money is to cut back on wasteful expenses so you have more available income for the important costs in life. For starters, if you know you’re prone to splurging as the result of certain spending triggers such as feeling bored or stressed out, then it’s important to master the art of self-restraint. You might even want to take out a small sum of money for “non-essential expenditures” on a monthly basis. That way, if you do want to treat yourself to luxuries, you’ll be limited in terms of what you can buy. This will train you to be disciplined, but it’ll also prevent you from being too destructive if a shopping urge overcomes you. You just need to be a conscious consumer.

It might even be a smart idea to keep a small amount of cash on you and leave your credit cards at home when you go shopping. Of course, luxury expenditures are a small part of the problem, but you can reduce unnecessary basic expenditures, too. You need to keep your home heated, for example, but you could reduce your energy bills by insulating your windows with thicker glazing and getting draft excluders for doors. If you want to start finding better ways to use your money, then you need to start by noticing examples of wasteful spending in your life and making the necessary changes.

Make good investments.
As mentioned in the introduction, you don’t want to simply save everything you own. Whilst you should protect your earnings, leaving them in your bank account to collect dust won’t help you in the long-term. You need to start investing some of your money so you can increase your wealth. Your salary might cover your present-day costs, but what about the future? Building up a portfolio of strong investments will help you to make money for your retirement or your children when they go to college or move out and get their own homes. You could consider investing in the property market. You might even want to get real estate training so you can figure out how the industry works. You can make a lot of money from selling or leasing properties. It’s a worthwhile investment opportunity.

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Start paying yourself first.
Thinking about the future is the best way to ensure you use your money wisely. That’s why you need to start paying yourself first. Earlier, we talked about practicing discipline and reducing your monthly spending. Well, one of the easiest ways to achieve this is to remove temptation. In other words, put a portion of your paycheck into your savings on a regular basis. In fact, you should do it on your payday. That way, you don’t have to worry about overcoming the urge to dip into your bank account and take out money for non-essential purchases; you’ll already have moved that money. Start paying yourself first, and you’ll be much wealthier in the long run.

If You Don’t Own Something Your Wealthy Isn’t Real

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. Understanding the difference between assets and liabilities is critical to understanding and building wealth. Likewise, simply having a job and working for ‘earned income’ versus acquiring money-generating assets is the difference between solely being an employee and one day becoming financially independent. The following contributed post is entitled, If You Don’t Own Something Your Wealthy Isn’t Real.

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We are all beholden to the economy of the nation we live in. The nation’s economy is beholden to the global economy. And round and round we go, in this daisy chain of ours. Everything is affected by everything else. Now, your biggest concern is your personal wealth; as it should be. The secret to protecting your wealth is to try and make it insular from everything else. In other words, you want to have a wealth that isn’t affected by the outside world. But, as aforementioned everything is tied to everything else. Whether you’re shopping for clothes, buying groceries or applying for a mortgage, before the price is levelled at your feet it has to go through the market. The market determines what that price will be. So two things we can conclude. There’s no way for your wealth to not be affected by the global economy and the market is how price is determined; in other words your wealth is given it’s true value. The giants that tower over everything else are assets. If you’re not holding something, owning something and backing up your monetary wealth by an asset, it’s not real.

What is an asset?

Firstly an asset is a complex entity to describe. However, for the sake of simplifying things, think of assets as something other than cold hard cash. Yet there are some people who will include their cash in ‘personal assets’. Number one, the most common asset is your home or rather property that you own. Land and structures on them home are all part and parcel of the same asset. A business is also considered an asset. A car or some kind of vehicle such as a boat is also considered an asset. Investment holdings such as stocks, insurance policies, mutual funds etc, are all considered assets. Warehouse storages, garages and equipment are all assets too.

There seems to be one running theme doesn’t there? An asset usually has the ability to convert it’s sale into cash or rather, it produces more wealth. Property prices rise year-on-year, thus you have an appreciating asset. A negative or loss-making asset has become an oxymoron as the whole point of having assets is for your wealth to increase just by ownership of said asset. Cars are a use to someone. It gets people to work, is enjoyable to drive and might be personally valuable to a collector. Stocks are a piece of the pie. A business that grows pays out to its stockholders so again, you have an asset that accumulates wealth for you.

Assets are a ‘hard wall’

Assets are usually a tangible entity. You can touch a property, you can live in the property. It provides you with a value or betterment to your life. Even if that enjoyment is subjective to the person, it still holds that value to be true. Capital assets are purely bank accounts or rather your cash wealth. Cash wealth on it’s own isn’t so confidence-inspiring. Look at it this way, if a wind came to blow your money away, how would you stop it? The simple answer is, you would protect your money with a wall and keep your capital inside. That’s exactly what assets are for. They give your capital asset worth and back it up. Nations do this for their currencies. Why should someone believe your currency is worth something, after all it’s just paper. Well, gold and other precious metals have been used to back up currencies and provide them with a solid wall of protection.

Look up the ‘Gold Standard’. For the majority of the time human beings have had complex, large and global economies, gold has been the number one material that has backed up FIAT currency. People are reassured that the paper they have in their pocket has a value which if they exchanged would allow them to buy food, water, property and live a comfortable life. This is because a precious metal is vouching for it. Assets have the exact same power for your cash wealth. If you were to go to a bank and ask for a loan, if you didn’t have a property, car, or some kind of asset, the chances of being turned away would be high. Assets give you a solid foundation of trust and support personally and for your capital.

The age old asset

Since time immemorial there has been one thing we all recognize as an asset. Jewelry is valuable to us in many different ways. It’s easy to understand why it’s valuable too, even as children we already know to look after a piece of jewelry that we have been given or perhaps found. Silver, gold, platinum, rubies, emeralds, diamonds etc, are all the most sought after kinds of jewelry. Precious metals and precious stones, have an innate shine or gleam to them. These materials have taken millions and millions, sometimes billions of years to form. Since this process takes so long, they are inherently valuable to us because they are things we cannot make.

If you have gold chains, diamond rings, ruby encrusted goblets, silver necklace charms or whatever the case may be, you need to protect these assets with some kind of insurance policy. For knowledge on what kinds of jewelry insurance you should get, look at Morison Insurance Brokers and ready their article carefully. They list all the valid reasons why you would need this kind of insurance policy and for what kind of jewelry. Jewelry is such a versatile asset, that almost any kind of financial institution will accept it as collateral holding. It’s not uncommon for bank loans to be given to people with low capital but who have very valuable jewelry assets.

They age like wine

Assets are the number one priority for people who are looking to retire without relying on a state pension. It’s clear to see that owning a couple properties and renting them out would net you a constant stream of capital flowing in. The properties will need to be kept to a high standard so they retain their value for longer, but that’s easily done. Properties are quite easy to understand and maintain. There are lots of services such as roofing, plumbing, landscaping and interior designers that can repair and update your properties to keep with the times. In this sense, assets have the ability to age like fine wine if you know how to take care of them. As the saying goes, if you take care of it, it will take care of you.

Assets like rare cars also have much the same appeal in terms of longevity. One of the original Ford GT40 cars was sold for $10+ million and a Ferrari GTO for even higher. Classic cars are not just interesting to hold as an asset, but they never seem to run out of buyers. No matter how many generations have moved on since the first day they rolled out of the factories, they are still enthusiastically bought for millions of dollars. There will always be a wealthy class of people that want a rare toy in their garage. That’s why having assets is so important, because the value they return to you is always set to increase year after year.

Create your own buffer zone

If none of the previous reasons have convinced you why you need to be owning assets, here is one last attempt. This one should win you over. When an economic crash ensues, capital all across the world gets slaughtered. Stocks and bonds plummet, currency values drop substantially and any hard cash is worth much, much less than it was just yesterday. Essentially, if all your wealth is in some kind of money hedge or just a lump sum in a bank, then your wealth will be cut down dramatically when an economic crash happens. Recessions all hit the cash flow in the market the same way. Consumer confidence drops, people pull their money out of investments and they go into hibernation to wait out the storm.

Now you may be thinking that assets will also have to fall in price because people aren’t spending as much. However, assets retain a lot more of their value even when there is a recession. This is because at the end of the day, someone will have enough money to buy or utilize your asset for their needs. Crucially, that need or desire is still there no matter what is going on in the economy. People who were saving up to buy a house don’t suddenly stop wanting a house because they lost a lot of money. No, the desire is still there so you have an inherent value in assets even in hard times. In a sense, assets create a buffer zone between you and the recession, they allow you to have more authority in the eyes of banks and governments.

Do not put all your wealth under your mattress so to speak. Put your wealth in asset acquiring. Own property such as a house, land, automobiles, boats and jewelry. When you have hard tangible wealth, your paper wealth is automatically boosted in so many ways.

How to Save Money when Running your Small Business

Two of the focuses of my blog are Financial Literacy/Money and Business/Entrepreneurship. When running a small business as with all businesses, the control of cashflow is critical. Doing so will ensure that your business continues to thrive. The following contributed post is entitled, How to Save Money when Running your Small Business.

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Running a small business can be both difficult and time-consuming. If you’re not careful then you may find that expenses slowly creep up on you, and this can cause you major problems in the future. If you want to avoid all of this, here are a few things that you can do to stay on top.

Lower the Cost of your Office Space

In some instances, it may be possible for you to take advantage of a decreased rental rate in your area. If this is not possible or if you don’t qualify for this type of benefit, then you may be able to renegotiate with your current landlord so you can get some better lease terms. If you don’t need to run your business from a commercial premises, then you may want to think about operating it from home. This will significantly lower the cost of your rent and it will also help you to lower the cost of your gas and energy usage too. In addition to saving on bills, you’ll also save on your business tax and even your utilities. This can go a long way and it can also make it way easier for you to keep an eye on the outgoings that you have.

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Reduce Staffing Costs

If your business has slow periods, it may be worth trying to reduce your staffing costs. Nowadays older employees are more than happy to take some unpaid time off so they can go on vacation or even see their family. If you want to get the best result out of your team chats then see if anyone would like to volunteer. You may be pleasantly surprised at the outcome and in some instances, you may be able to save a small fortune too. Another thing that you can do is to try and hire family members wherever possible. They will be much more flexible when it comes to payment and they may even be willing to give you some additional support when it comes to the finer details of your company too.

Always Barter

Bartering has been around for thousands of years, and it is a great way for you to get the edge on your competition . If you want to help yourself here, you need to try and talk with your vendors to see if they can give you a lower rate on any products you need. They may be willing to set up a contract, or even bulk discounts. If your current vendor is not willing to do this, there are other options available. For example, you can easily go to someone else and then revisit the original vendor with a counter-offer. Sometimes this is more than enough for them to loosen their pricing structure, and you may even end up getting a way better deal as a result.

Vehicle Expenses

If you are running a service or even a contract business that requires the use of a vehicle then you probably know how expensive it can be. Fuel and servicing costs for bigger vehicles or even crew can be astronomical. One way for you to reduce the costs of operating a fleet would be for you to buy used vehicles. It doesn’t even matter if the vehicles require a good level of repair either because it’s still way cheaper than you buying a new truck brand-new. If you still feel as though the expenses you’re paying are far too much, then it may be worth trying to reduce your fuel consumption. Diesel and hybrid vehicles can be more expensive for you to purchase but they can really pay off and they may even save you a small fortune in terms of maintenance too.

Cut down on Supply Costs

When it comes to supply costs, you have to make sure that you budget. As a business owner, you need to ensure that you constantly monitor supplies and that you also check for occasional discounts too. Don’t be afraid to look around and make yourself popular with suppliers. This can be done by paying your bills promptly and also displaying loyalty.

Cut Down on Advertisement Costs

A lot of businesses often spend 5% of the revenue that they get on advertising. This figure may be higher for service businesses, or those who are just starting out. With more and more customers shopping online when compared to ever before, it’s safe to say that you need to at least have a website or even a Facebook page. Having SEO and even television advertising is great and it can help your exposure, but they can also be expensive and they can put a real hole in your budget. One way for you to get around this would be for you to try and advertise organically through Facebook and Twitter. It doesn’t cost you anything to do this, and when you combine it with a weekly newsletter you will soon find that it’s easier than ever for you to gain a lot of traction with your customers.

Cut down on Insurance

Your annual insurance bill will probably cost you a small fortune every year. If you don’t have enough insurance however then this could be enough to bring your business to its knees, and this is something that you do need to make yourself aware of. If you want to help yourself, you need to annually review the insurance that you have. If you don’t feel as though you need one part of your policy anymore, get rid of it as this will save you a huge amount of money. If you have a larger business with a ton of insured assets, then it may be worth doing an asset review too. This will help you to make sure that you are not insuring assets that you no longer have.

Make the Most out of Your Time

If you are a business owner then you’ll know how important time management can be. Business owners should always be prioritising and they should also be using their time accordingly. If you don’t, this could have a huge impact on your bottom line and you may even find that your company suffers as a result. If business is slow then now is the time for you to invest more money into advertising. If your business is taking off and really getting sales then it may be a good idea for you to invest more in things like software or even additional ways for you to manage your workload. Either way, the way that you manage your time will make a huge difference to your business income and it will also help you to save on expenses too.

Watch your Energy Bills

If you have a ton of energy bills coming out, then something needs to be done. You need to make sure that you always turn off lights when they are not in use, and it also helps to keep an eye on standby technology. This will be eating away at your energy usage and it will also stop your business from being efficient too. If you want to do something about this, consider installing a motion sensor light in your offices or have a power strip that shuts everything off when you leave the premises. This will stop you from forgetting about those little things and it will also help you to be more green in general. Another thing that you can do if you work in the industrial sector is invest in slimline water tanks. When you do, you will be able to collect rainwater rather than using it from the business supply.

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Tax Bills

Minimising your tax bill is one of the best ways for you to save a lot of money over the year. You need to get in the habit of writing down exactly how much your business spends on things and you also need to make sure that you detail them properly too. Saving receipts and recording mileage is also essential, as this can all be claimed back at a later date. If you have family members who work in the same business as you then treat them as employees, and file for any expenses that they incur too. There’s nothing wrong with this, but it will help you to pay the right amount of tax when the end of the year comes along.

Utilise the Cloud

For a lot of businesses, cloud computing is a fantastic way for you to reduce the expense of your business. It can also help you to operate more efficiently too. When you invest in cloud computing, you don’t need to worry about maintaining your servers on-site and you also don’t have to worry about ongoing software upgrades either. You will have access to all of the applications you need with the flexibility of the cloud. If you want to get some additional support here, then consider chatting with the cloud providers in your area to see if they can talk you through the solutions they have.