Posts tagged: investments

Ways to Invest in a Comfortable Future

better finance futureThe future is hard to predict, a little scary, and full of opportunities. Life is about taking calculated risks and understanding the importance of predictability, which is why many people over the world have turned to investing in their future in order to live comfortably. But what exactly does it mean to invest in your future, and how can you go about doing it?

Reducing Your Debt

There’s always the problem of student debt. It’s something that we can end up paying back over the course of our lives. If we don’t make use of our schooling, then it can make us feel like we’ve wasted a lot of time in college and university. If you’re still young enough to consider going to college or university, then take a moment to look at other options. For instance, you don’t need a degree in anything if you have ample experience and a portfolio to show off. Many employers are now shying away from degrees and have begun to look more at someone’s experience and skills than their paper degree. Avoiding student debt by simply not attending college or university is a legitimate strategy. When you consider that some of the greatest entrepreneurs of our time dropped out of college, it’s easy to see how unnecessary a formal education is.

Seeking Assistance

There’s plenty of help you can get to help you invest in a comfortable future. For instance, hiring a financial adviser comes with many perks. For starters, they’re great at managing wealth and teaching you how to reinvest your savings so that they continue to grow. This is both to beat inflation and give you a great sense of satisfaction by just watching your bank balance grow. You can also seek assistance from more experienced people you know. For instance, asking an elderly relative or your parents how they saved for their retirement and questioning them about mistakes they made could reveal some helpful insight.

Building relationships

It’s difficult to get through life on your own which is why you need to have friends and family members close to you. Investing in your relationships sounds easy enough, but very few people in the world have real relationships with people that they can count on. It could be a significant other, a really close friend or even just family members who are reliable and will go the extra mile to get you out of trouble. These are the people that will help you when you turn 60 and finally retire, and they’re also the people that will help you out of mentally stressful situations.

Saving Money

And of course, we can’t forget about saving money. Whether you’re an incredibly dedicated worker or someone that only works part time, it’s important to live a frugal and healthy lifestyle that will ultimately give you all the financial security you need. Spending money on luxuries is important to maintain a happy life, but there are times when you also need to save money in order to get the most out of your future.

Increase Real Estate Value With Cost-Effective Improvements

real estate valuesIt goes without saying that there are ways in which you can make smart investments and ways in which you can make dumb ones. Investing your money in real estate is a smart investment. It’s a great way to tie up your money in a physical asset that can increase in value over time.

Generally speaking, all real estate investment earn money over time, as the market tends to always increase in value. However, there are ways you can speed things up and improve the value of your real estate investment in a short space of time.

How? By making home improvements. But, not just any improvements, cost-effective ones. You want to make improvements that don’t cost a lot of money but can add serious value.

Here’s how to do it:

Look For The Best Value Option

No matter what work you want to carry out on your property, always look for the best value option. This could mean looking for an option that uses different materials, but costs less.

As an example, say you’re building a garage – which is a great way to add value to the property – you have different materials to choose from. There’s the regular brick and mortar, then there’s steel. Most people go for the first option because they think it’s more traditional. However, the metal building cost per square foot is a lot less than this option. So, in this scenario, steel is the best value option. You still get a garage, it’s still sturdy and strong, you just pay less – simple.

Apply this tip to all your home improvements too. Say you want to replace your roof with a more modern structure, weigh up the material options and find one that offers the best value.

Try And Cover The Cost Of Labor

Often, it’s not the actual improvements that cost a lot but rather it’s the cost of labor. What I mean by this is that paying for someone to come in and make the improvements could cost a lot of money. So much so that it could prevent you from making a profit on your investment.

Bearing that in mind, what you should do is try and cover the cost of the labor yourself. Try and carry out the home improvements yourself or with the help of friends/family. You won’t have to pay any labor costs, and it could save you a fortune. Now, you’ll earn more from the improvements you make yourself, as they don’t cost as much.

Of course, there are probably some home improvements that you can’t make yourself. In which case, you will be forced to hire some outside help. But, refer back to the first point; find the best value option. Look around for a contractor or handyman – or whoever you need – but choose one that offers the best price as well as a proven track record of quality service. Even if you can only do one or two improvements yourself, you still save some money.

It’s all about finding cost-effective ways to improve your home and increase its value. Now, you could sell it earlier than you intended and still make a sizeable profit.

Why Flipping Houses Is A Good Business Opportunity

flipping house for financePeople who flip houses sometimes have a bad reputation because the work that they do necessitates that they be rather ruthless. To buy a house and quickly try to renovate it so that it can be sold for a profit is not an easy job at all, not least because so many factors in the success or failure of the enterprise are out of the person’s control. For instance, if someone was to buy a house and start pouring money into it to get it to the point that it is marketable and then the economy started to suffer, that person could potentially lose lots of money. It is not just shifts in the country’s economic well-being that can be a factor though. There is so much paperwork and legal fees that have to be processed to buy and then sell a house. Also, sourcing all of the materials and redesigning an entire house is something that some people spend years doing (although with the intention of creating a home rather than a profit). If you flip houses, you have to do it all much quicker. However difficult it may be, here are a few reasons why it is a great way to make money and something that you may want to consider doing:

It is not always the case that shifts in the economy are necessarily going to work against you. While it may seem rather callous, property foreclosures offer a good business opportunity. If you can buy a house as cheaply as possible, that gives you a greater chance of making a profit. Another good thing about the recent financial crisis was that it has lowered mortgage interest rates. This means that more people will want to take out mortgages, which means that there will be more potential buyers. Besides, the market is good right now. There are lots of people who are thinking ‘I want to sell my house fast’, a fact demonstrated by 5.71 million existing homes being sold last month, up from 5.47 million in February of this year. You always have to be aware of the rate of inflation, but right now is the best time to buy, renovate and sell houses in several decades.

Do not let anyone tell you that it is easy though. The sweat equity of flipping houses plays a big part in your final profits. If you do lots of the work on the property yourself, you can cut down on costs, but if you do not have the time or the skills and choose instead to hire outside labor, you can quickly see your future profits disappear. If you are not as handy with a tool belt as you’d like to be, you should consider trying to find contractors with whom you can negotiate a deal. If they work for a lesser rate, you could perhaps guarantee them work for several years.

Finally, to make money flipping houses, you have to be patient. Do not buy a house unless you are confident that it is the perfect one. Do not accept the first quotes that you receive from contractors and do not try to sell the place as soon as it is finished. Timing is everything.

Your Perfect Real Estate Investment Has Land-ed

ideal investments in real estateThere comes a time in every single person’s life where the penny drops and they realise that it could be time to invest in real estate. However, most people have a warped sense of what that actually means and so they start thinking about how they can afford to, the complexities around doing so, the trials and tribulations, the effort and the work involved.

But investing in real estate doesn’t have to mean buying a structure. It doesn’t have to mean investing in an apartment, flat, house, condo, commercial property or residential space, and it doesn’t have to mean fixing up somewhere. You see, real estate does include land, you know. Yeah.

So many people overlook vacant land as an investment, though, which is foolish if you ask us, and here is why:

You Buy It. That’s All.

When you invest in a structure, you have to think about renovation works and replacing stuff, which you never have to do with vacant land. You buy the land and you have the land. You don’t need to have a knowledge of construction or anything, just an idea of whether the land could be suitable for building on. Simple.

It’s So Cheap

Vacant land is so cheap compared to other types of real estate. You could buy a decent chunk of land with the cash that is in your savings right now, probably, and if not, all you have to do is compare personal loans and take the one that you like the look of. That’s it, then. There are no other outlays. No structure to pay for, no mortgage to battle, taxes are teeny-tiny, and so is insurance, if you want to have insurance.

No Hassle Whatsoever

The thing with investing in vacant land is, well, it’s vacant. That means there are no tenants you have to chase up because their rent is late. You don’t need to pay an agent any maintenance fees or get a gardener or a plumber or anything. No. Vacant land is the least demanding real estate investment you can possibly make. Period.

Prices Can Only Increase

Your options with vacant land are endless. Either you can hang on to it and live safe in the knowledge that no one is making any more land, which means your little piece of the earth is only going to become more in demand and demand is good. You could start using it for business purposes, in which there are only a few things to consider. You could even seek out some planning permission and watch as the value skyrockets, and we mean skyrockets, and that’s without even having to put a nail in anything. Whatever you fancy, you can do.

Earn An Income

The thing with vacant land is, you always have options on how to generate money. Think about it. You could turn it into a campsite, you could rent out some of it to a telephone company to erect a mast or a farmer who wants some grazing grounds. Maybe there is an energy company sniffing around. If it’s wind power, then you can go online and see exactly how much wind your land gets. If it’s solar, then you’re an option so long as you aren’t covered by a giant canopy. Money, money, money.

Financial Downsides and Potential Issues of Owning a Pet

financially downGetting a dog, or any other animal, to become a loved member of the household is a big step that many families decide to take at some point in their lives. Dogs and cats and other little domestic animals can offer a lot of love and warmth to a home, which is why so many welcome pets into their loving arms. With anything, there are both pros and cons to pet owning, and one of the biggest things that concern a family when it comes to the decision of welcoming a pet is the financial impact it will have.

Dogs are one of the most common pets that are seen in modern households. They’ve been man’s best friend through the ages. A dog can offer additional security and protection, as well a fierce friend that will last a lifetime… in dog years.

However, they also can get expensive. Some dogs, like purebreds, can be hundreds of dollars, and that is just the initial price of your pet that doesn’t include all of the supplies and equipment you’ll need to care for them for the years to come.

Regular and emergency vet visits. Dogs should be seen by a vet often and stay up to date on their immunizations and treatments to avoid getting medical problems. Sometimes these things can still happen, so you’ll have to also plan for the possibility of extra medical bills for your pet.

Special care equipment and furniture. Large dogs and older ones will need special beds that can get expensive. Walking gear can vary depending on the size and strength of your pet, and if they have existing medical conditions, they may need certain food that can get expensive. Planning for these things can help you decide a budget.

Potential injuries and prevention. Your dog may get hurt or may end up hurting others. This is rare, and some legal funding companies will offer a dog bite loan to help you stay on top of things financially while you’re working through the repercussions financially for a dog bite.

Many people have allergies to pet fur. Making sure that everyone has medicine and makes an appointment for allergy testing can get expensive depending on how many people are in your home.

Destroyed or damaged furniture and items. Dogs, especially puppies, are playful and energetic. They’ll get bored and lonely when you aren’t home. In the early months before your dog is fully trained, you may have to deal with damages to the things in your home. This can also go for cats.

Moving can get a little pricey if you have to bring the pets. Paying for transportation for a pet can get expensive depending on the size and weight and type of your pet. Some can get in the car with you, but you’ll have to make more frequent stops.