Most people have experience in crafting and sticking to a personal household budget. Keeping an eye on how and when you spend money within your business is just as important. Drawing up a budget for a business is a little bit more complex because there are likely to be a lot more components to account for. Luckily, it does not have to be the daunting, tiresome task that you expect. Here is your handy guide to budgeting for your business. [Read more…] about Your Guide to Budgeting for Your Business
The holidays are right around the corner, and Christmas shopping is in full swing. While you may find yourself deep into Christmas shopping, have you ever stopped to consider if you really have to give holiday gifts? In the past few years, my family decided to stop giving each other gifts. Here is why my family stopped giving Christmas gifts and what we do instead.
Why We Stopped Doing Christmas Gifts
I come from a fairly large family. There are six of us in my immediate family, and most of us are married. Once you factor in gifts for one another, spouses, and nieces and nephews, Christmas gifts quickly became expensive and tiring.
The final straw was when me and two other of my siblings moved away from our home state. If we want to come home for the holidays, it requires us to purchase a plane ticket. And if we have a spouse, it’s double the price to make it back to celebrate with family! Not to mention, the cost of boarding our pets and renting a car (since our hometown is not near an airport). If we can make it home for Christmas, it can easily cost $1,000. That’s the price of a mini vacation!
Now, with a family of 11 people, assume we each spent $50 on everyone’s gift. That’s $550 in just gifts. Add that on top of the price of travel, and it quickly became expensive.
And when you live far away, cost isn’t the only factor. You also have to consider how you will get the gifts to our family. Sure, you can try to stuff as many as you can in your suitcase. But that isn’t realistic. Of course, you could always ship gifts, but then you have to worry about wrapping gifts when you get there, or just not wrap them at all. It just added a lot of stress to us as a family!
Finally, my family realized the end of the year is busy for all of us. We are all busy at work, planning to travel, and trying to plan for the next year. Buying Christmas gifts just added to the stress, when really, all we wanted was to spend time with one another.
Alternatives to Christmas Gifts
In lieu of Christmas gifts, my family puts that money aside and takes a family vacation together once a year. It’s a great way to experience something new with all of us and form less-rushed memories together!
And while we don’t do holiday gifts, we did decide to prioritize birthday gifts instead. That way, we can truly celebrate one person on their special day versus buying gifts for everyone at once. And even then, most of our gifts are for experiences, such as classic car rentals, gift cards to a fancy restaurant, or tickets to a play.
If you haven’t considered alternatives to Christmas gifts, I highly recommend it. For us, the absence of gifts makes our holidays more focused on what’s truly important – spending time together as a family and celebrating together.
Exchange-traded-funds (ETFs) are some of the most trusted investments and more than 85% of financial advisors in the US recommend it to their clients. This investment option is popular, mostly among young investors, as it is diversified, accessible, and requires little expenses. [Read more…] about 4 Common ETF Investment Mistakes You Should Avoid
Renting a home or apartment is one of the most exciting events for first-timers. You may be a first-time renter or looking to move into a new area to downsize. Whatever the case, renting gives you independence and flexibility. However, renting an apartment or home can sometimes feel a bit scary or overwhelming. Before you do anything else, you need to think about the best renters insurance. [Read more…] about Tips for Renting an Apartment/Home
Every time you turn on the news, it’s likely you see updates of political strife, wars, and international injustices. Without completely experiencing life abroad, it can feel somewhat ambiguous. Without doing your research, it may be easy to assume that international investing is risky or uncertain. However, that isn’t necessarily the case. If you have started investing, it’s likely you eventually will wondering what are the pros and cons of international investing. Here is what you need to know.
Why Should You Consider Investing Internationally?
With so many investment options within the United States, you may wonder why you should even consider investing internationally. Well, there are a few reasons.
For one, international markets are incredibly diverse, and include opportunities to invest in industries you can’t invest in domestically. Every country has different economic strengths, and it may prove worthwhile to research growing industries in those countries.
Secondly, many major companies are based overseas. By investing outside of the United States, you are able to diversify your investments and find more large-scale opportunities. And while strong performance isn’t necessarily given, by investing in international companies, you broaden the opportunities a viable to you.
Lastly, investing internationally diversifies your investments. As you know, it’s never good to have all of your eggs in one basket. If you only invest domestically and the country economy crashes, you may suffer more than if you diversified your investment portfolio.
Cons of International Investing
What are the drawbacks of international investing? One potential pitfall is the risk with not knowing everything that is going on abroad. A country’s economy could be near collapse, and unless you follow the news often, you could miss it. In turn, your finances could take a hit. Whether a country is suffering politically or socially, it could impact your bottom line.
Another potential con of investing internationally is the difference in regulatory requirements. While you are likely pretty familiar with the compliance expectations within the United States, other countries aren’t necessarily held up to the same standard. That means the information you receive about your investments abroad may be completely different than you’re used to, making it challenging to fully understand. Or worse, you could receive totally inaccurate investment reports!
Further, the differences in international currencies could affect your investments. Any fluctuations in currencies when compared to the US dollar could affect your investments. This could be helpful or harmful; but either way, it creates another factor in comparing your international investments versus your domestic investments.
Is Investing Internationally Right for You?
So, is international investing right for you? While there are some potential risks and differences to investing internationally, it also helps to diversify your nest egg. If you’re able to keep up with various socioeconomic conditions of countries abroad, or work with a financial advisor who can help you along the way, investing internationally may provide the diversification you are looking for.
[Read more…] about What Are the Pros and Cons of International Investing?
Regular bookkeeping is essential to ensure the health of your business, and to be able to provide your accountant with an accurate view of your expenditure. Without correct, up to date books, you cannot submit your tax return properly. Plus, you could be subject to unannounced visits from HMRC or costly tax enquiries. [Read more…] about What Do You Need To Record On Your Company Books?