Category: Money

How To Pull Yourself Out Of Financial Difficulties After A Challenging Life Event

help in financeSometimes, life can throw you a challenge, and they can often lead to unprecedented emotional and financial difficulties. Therefore, whether you’ve been made redundant, extreme weather has damaged your home beyond repair, or, you’ve gone through a costly divorce; it’s vital that you get your thinking cap on and figure out what to do financially. Working out your money and where it’s going as soon as possible, will help protect you and your assets in the future. The following are some things you might need to consider, should you find yourself in financial strife.

Maintaining Your Income

During difficult life events, like divorce, it’s important that the other key areas of your lifestyle remain as intact as possible. Therefore, it’s essential that you inform your employer of any significant changes to your situation, so that they understand that you may need some time out of the office, and you won’t have to jeopardize your job. If it’s your job that you’ve lost, and you find yourself redundant, then you must financially plan immediately, and pick up any work available, while you search for your next career move.

By maintaining a steady income, and carefully considering any purchases, you’ll be able to ease the transition into any other major life changes. This will help your and your family, both financially, and emotionally in the future.

Rebuilding Your Credit

Life changes that cause financial hardship and struggles can often lead to you to paying for things with a credit card or not paying back loans and bills on time. These difficult financial situations can result in bad credit, and for you to figure out how you’re going to rebuild your life, you’ll need to seek professional help and advice. You can research into credit repair services, find out; does Lexington Law really work and discover what you’ll need to do to get yourself out of the red again.

Selling Your Assets

In order to release some equity, and get back on your feet financially, you might need to make some tough decisions in regards to your property and bigger assets. Downsizing your accommodation, or replacing your car with an affordable alternative, are decisions to make quickly so that you can save as much of your money as possible. Check out 10 tips to sell your home fast here.

Even though it might be a tough process to go through, relinquishing your expensive assets could give you the cash you need in the present, and secure a lucrative future for you and your family. Remember that nothing has to be permanent, and if you’re willing to make the sacrifices now, you’re likely to benefit in the long run.

Changing Your Lifestyle

It’s all very well ensuring that you’re still working and that you’ve downsized to affordable alternatives; however, if you continue to spend money in all the same places as before, you’ll run out of it pretty quickly. You’ll need to rethink where and how you shop, and ensure that your monthly outgoings are significantly reduced; so that if you do have spare cash, you can save it for the future.

The Changing Face Of Property Investment

global property investmentsProperty is one of those things that is seemingly always cited as a great opportunity for investment. Housing, after all, is one of those things for which there will always be a demand. The President of the United States demonstrated over the course of his career that with a small loan (of a million dollars no less) that one can become a billionaire. However, scrutiny of these claims suggests that Donald Trump did not use his ingenuity and hard work to build the empire that he ostensibly relinquished control of when he took office earlier this year. The fact is that Trump simply did not have the connections or the capital to finance some of the projects that started his career as a developer. This demonstrates that the market can be tough when you are starting out. As a point in fact, Trump declared bankruptcy four times in 1991 and 1992 alone, with a further two bankruptcies, in 2004, and most recently, in 2009. A lot of people will not have the contacts to start building hotels in Manhattan when they are in their twenties. However, there is nothing wrong with slowly and honestly building a portfolio that modestly begins with a single property. Deciding exactly what property that should be is the difficult part.

The first and most important step to investing in property though is the initial financing that you need to source to get your start. If your father is not an immensely wealthy real estate developer, you will probably need to look to banks or other lenders to help you out. Trying to get a mortgage for an investment is different to seeking one so that you can buy the house in which you intend to live. The checks that will be carried out will be more precise, and you will need to provide detailed business plans before you can expect to be met with approval. You also need to worry about the fundamentals. If your credit rating is not as good as it could be, you may want to think about waiting a while before trying to start a portfolio. There are lots of ways to improve your credit rating like paying off your existing debts and demonstrating an ability to effectively and quickly paying off your future ones. However, until this is done, a new venture may be unnecessarily risky. Something as simple as registering on the electoral roll in your area could increase the chances of being accepted for a loan. The fact remains that when you take on a loan, you become personally liable for paying that money back with interest. If your investment fails or does not give you as great a return as you’d hoped, you could be in a particularly difficult financial situation. It is, therefore, crucial that you carefully consider each investment on its merits before taking on such a massive responsibility. You would not be the first person to bankrupt themselves as a result of ambition.

However, if you are pretty sure that you have enough money to make a move in the markets, and you will have enough left over in case it fails, you need to start looking for different types of property in which to invest. One option, and perhaps the most common, is buying residential properties to sell or rent. One particularly lucrative option is student property investment. Students often get loans to support them while they are at college and not able to work full time. They will, therefore, have the money to pay for accommodation, which, after all, is a necessity. It is a good idea to think about investing in student properties because there will always be a constant supply of new students. Each year, a group will graduate, but a new group will join to replace them. However, it is not just students that represent a good target demographic for rental properties. Millennials are now being described as Generation Rent. A lot of young people grew up or left college during the economic downturn that started in 2008. They have struggled to find jobs that pay well enough for them to be able to start thinking about a mortgage. In fact, a study conducted last year found that the share of 18 to 34-year-olds who own their own homes has fallen to a thirty year low. These people have no other recourse but to rent. If you own rental properties, you could claim your stake of a massive and expanding market. If you invest money in affordable, safe, amenable housing, you could attract lots of potential tenants who are still striving to start their careers and develop some sort of financial certainty and independence. The reality is that a lot of buy to rent properties are not that expensive and with such demand, getting a loan should not be too hard since you can prove the viability of your plan.

The issue of gentrification is one of which you should be aware of though. In the United States, perhaps the most obvious recent example is the change that has taken place in Brooklyn. Whereas areas like Greenpoint were once home to mostly immigrant communities, Brooklyn now has rents that are comparable to Manhattan because so-called ‘hipsters’ started to move to these areas. They become fashionable, and the rent went up as a result. It is a simple economic model. If a landlord realizes that their property suddenly has more value, they will charge more for it to take advantage. This sort of social change has been harshly criticized in the past because many areas lose the identity that they once had. The small, independent stores and businesses that allowed the local people to survive are replaced by chains and major corporations, therefore outsourcing the profits too. However, if you buy lots of property in an area that you anticipate will become gentrified, you could make immense amounts of money. The only problem is that it is quite difficult to anticipate where people will want to live next. Knowing that is the secret to making good investments.

How Much Should Your Home Down Payment Be?

financial quakeWhen you’re buying a home one of the biggest considerations is your down payment. Depending on the loan you are getting, you may have a specific requirement for how much you want to put down. That’s the minimum for that loan, though, and doesn’t mean you can’t put down a larger amount. But should you? That’s a choice only you can make. Before you decide on what level of down payment you want to consider, take a good look at your finances and be sure that any down payment amount you choose won’t leave you in financial peril.

Putting 20% Down

Among your down payment options is choosing to put 20% of the purchase price down on the purchase of your home. This option is often chosen because it generally avoids the requirement for you to pay Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). However, not everyone has this level of down payment, and there are times when it pays to keep money where it is and not pull it from savings or other investments to use it for a down payment. In some instances, you could actually lose money by trying to avoid PMI with 20% down.

5% and 10% Down Loans

For people who don’t have a 20% down payment or don’t want to put that much money down on their home, 5% or 10% as a down payment is relatively common. Most people with good credit will qualify for these types of loans through various banks and credit unions, along with other types of lenders. Paying PMI will be required as a part of these types of mortgages, but in a number of cases, this PMI amount will not be high. With a low PMI and the ability to leave money in the bank or in investments, this can be a chosen option for many buyers.

FHA and the 3.5% Down Requirement

When people choose a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loan, the minimum amount they can put down with good credit and solid income is generally 3.5%. In some cases, an FHA loan may require them to put down more than that, such as 5%. The money they put down can be from their own funds, or it can be a gift from someone else, but it cannot be from a loan. There will be PMI required because of the small down payment, but this can allow people who do not have a lot of money to purchase a home so they no longer have to rent.

No Money Down Loans, Like USDA and VA

In some cases, the Veteran’s Administration and the USDA offer loans where a person doesn’t have to put any money down. There are specific requirements for these loans, and the seller of the home may be asked to pay closing costs in the transaction. Additionally, good credit is generally required, and for USDA loans, there may be specific areas in which the property has to be located. This can be a hindrance for someone looking for property under these types of loans, but the lack of a down payment can also make them attractive to some buyers.

Putting a Larger Amount Down on Your Home

Another option is to put much more than 20% down on a home. Some people do this on investment properties, but there are also people who choose this option for their primary home. They may do this to reduce the size of their mortgage payment, get a mortgage with a shorter term, or otherwise get more favorable offerings from their lender. They may also have money available to them that they aren’t investing, so they want to use it in a way they feel is wise. Paying more down can be an option for people with higher levels of income or savings.

No matter which option you choose for a down payment, it’s often best to consider a variety of options. Then you can make the right decision based on your specific needs and situation. There is no right or wrong choice when making a down payment on a home, because everyone has different circumstances. The ‘right’ down payment choice is the one you’ve thought about, understand, and that works for you.

Build Your New Business Faster with These Tips

fast growing businessIf you run a company, you probably want it to grow as quickly as possible. But that’s not always as easy to do as it sounds. Any kind of business growth should be celebrated. If it’s not happening quickly enough, don’t rush into anything rash because you could end up making the situation worse rather than better.

However, there are some positive steps you can take to help your business grow in a way that’s both sustainable and fast. Read on now to find out what these tips are and how they can have an impact on the growth of your company.

Establish Your Revenue Sources

You need to have a clear plan for where your money is going to come from when you run a business. You can’t expect things to just fall into place if your revenue sources are not properly nailed down. That just won’t happen. So, give some thought to what you should do to secure your revenue sources. Solidify your plans and make it clear how you want your business to cope with the challenges that stand in your way of exploiting those sources of revenue. It’s essential to get this right if you want your business to grow.

Hire Good People

The people that power your business are its employees. These people need to be the right individuals doing the right jobs if you want to do well. No business grows fast without the right people onboard. Business is all about people and personalities. They’ll be working away behind the scenes even if customers and clients don’t see much of them. So, you need to hire good people with the right talents and proficiencies if you want to get ahead and do well. The better your employees are, the easier it will be to grow your small business.

Seek Professional Support

Sometimes, you need to get help from the best if you want to grow and expand. There is nothing wrong with seeking this kind of help, and it doesn’t suggest that you don’t know what you’re doing either. Instead, it’s about getting help from people with more experience and tips to share with you. You could take a course like Learn Build Earn to learn tips from people who know what they’re talking about. It’s something that you should definitely start to look into if you want to get better and expand your horizons.

Be Careful with Risks

There are some risks that you simply can’t afford to take in the world of business. But on the other hand, running a business is all about taking risks. There is no way forward without risk-taking. It’s all about getting that balance right, and making sure that the risks you take are always measured and calculated. Failing to do that will just lead to disaster for your business, and I’m sure that’s not something that you will want to deal with. You will experience far fewer setbacks in business if you don’t take risks that simply aren’t necessary.

Learn How to Adapt to New Challenges

You’re going to have to be able to adapt if you want to succeed as a small business owner. This is always the way it has been, and nothing has changed. This might be frustrating for you because no one really likes changes. But if you learn to be more adaptable in each way you conduct business, you will move in the right direction and become better able to deal with the ups and downs of running a company. Don’t be so restrained and uptight when it comes to running your business. Be more open to new opportunities that take you in new and interesting directions.

Stay a Step Ahead

Staying a step ahead of the game is really important for business owners. When you are on top of things and able to see what’s coming round the corner next, your business will be in far better shape. You won’t be taken by surprise, and you won’t be able to be tripped up quite so easily when you are a step ahead of your rivals and the trends in the market. You have to be ahead when you are trying to maintain your market share and expand it at a rapid rate. The more you know, the better you will be at finding success.

If you use these tips and put them into practice when managing your business and guiding it towards success, you will be able to make sure that you grow your business faster.

Can You Really Afford Another Large Purchase?

online buyingWe all know how great it is to treat our family and ourselves to a large purchase. Maybe you have needed a new family car for quite some time. Or perhaps you have a relative’s birthday coming up, and you want to really push the boat out and get them a gift that they will never forget. But are you totally sure that you can afford the big purchase? If you aren’t too sure, it is a much better idea to check in with your finances rather than flashing the cash without knowing how worse off it might leave you. Thankfully, it isn’t too difficult to figure out whether or not you can afford a big purchase – you just need to ask yourself these questions.

Where Is The Money Coming From?

The first thing you need to figure out is where the money for this big purchase is going to come from. Ideally, you should already have the money in a bank account. This should be an account that allows easy access to the funds and doesn’t charge you for withdrawals. If you don’t have the money just yet, you should look into getting the best credit card available. When you are looking for a credit card, you should always take note of the interest rate, as this will affect your monthly payments.

Where Can I Get The Best Price?

Lots of us now do our shopping online, and most people have their favorite sites that they always visit. Most of the time, it tends to be the likes of Amazon. But are you sure you are getting the best price on your favorite site? If you only shop at Amazon, for instance, out of habit, it could be time to start to compare prices elsewhere. By shopping around, you will be able to find some really great deals and discounts.

What Else Could I Do With This Money?

Another really important question to ask yourself, do you have an idea of how else you could use the money? For example, you might have some responsibilities that might need the money. If your rent is due, then you shouldn’t use the rent money to buy a fancy new dress. Have you also started to put some money to one side for retirement? If not, then you might be better off using the money to start a pension pot. As you can see, there are a few useful things you could use the money for, and your big purchase can wait.

What Is The Returns Policy?

These days, most shops and stores have pretty good returns policies. However, there are still a few places that make it difficult for customers to return their items. If you do make a big purchase, it should be from a store that allows a full refund within thirty days. And make sure that they aren’t just going to refund you in store credit!

So, are you really sure now is the right time to make that big purchase?