Browsing Category: "Shopping and Finance"

Hiring the Perfect First Employee

Hiring employees is never an easy task. Get it wrong and it can be an expensive mistake, but get it right and they can help your business to grow and be a real asset. To give you more chance of finding the perfect employee there are a few steps you need to follow.

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Define The Duties You Want To Be Completed

The first thing you should do is carefully go through all the tasks you will be expecting your new employee to carry out and define all of the duties. This is an important first step as you cannot be certain what type of person you are looking for if you do not know the full extent of the job you want them to do.

You need to be aware of what skills they will need and what their working environment will be like. This will all have to be part of the job description, as well as helping you to choose the perfect person.

Follow A Checklist

Plan your recruiting strategy and make yourself a checklist to follow so that you do not miss any of the processes you need to go through. You will need to check that they are who they say they are, for instance, and that any qualification they say they have are genuine. Netverify lets you comply with AML regs so you can be certain you are not being used as a money-laundering front and at the same time their identity will be confirmed. It’s a stepworth taking.

Your list should also include things like following up on any references they have given. Although generally, potential employees are only going to give you names of people they know will speak highly of them, references from previous employers can sometimes be very enlightening.

You should also check to see if they have any social media pages as these can be very revealing and show the true personality of a candidate. How they interact with friends and family will be how they are in the work environment once they have settled in. If you do not like the attitude they have on Facebook or Twitter, you are not likely to get on with them as an employee.

You will probably have many resumes’ to go through. If you disregard anyone that does not fit in with anything from your checklist then you will not waste time interviewing him or her.

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Talk To Them

Your time is precious and you do not want to waste it by interviewing many people that will not be suitable.  Try giving them a quick call first. A brief telephone interview could give you some idea about whether they will be any good at the job, what salary and other benefits they are expecting and how they are hoping to be able to help your business.

A few well-chosen questions can determine this all very quickly and will let you whittle down the list of potential employees even further.

Have The Interview Prepared

Now you are down to the last few applicants it is time to start the interviews. You will already know quite a bit about each one that you are going to see and it would be good if they knew something about you. If they have bothered to do some research into your business before they arrive, that does at least show some initiative and that they are still interested in the job.

Phrase your questions in such a way that a simple yes or no is not enough. You want them to open up about past employment and any other work experience they have had. For instance, how did they learn the skill you are asking for, and do they enjoy this type of work? Honest answers from them will be the way you will know which one is the best option, but of course, you are relying on them telling you the truth.

Knowing their interests is also useful in case any of them conflict with the ethics of your business. Although this is something they should have included in their resume, now you have the chance to expand on them.

You will not really know if you have found the perfect person for your business until they have been working for you a while. Some employers use a trial period as a way of determining this, while others are against this idea as they say the employee will be on their best behavior until the trial is over.

At some point though, you will have to make a decision about which candidate you employ and only time will tell if you have made the right one.

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Financial Decisions You Should Take Seriously

In your personal life, just like in business, you will have to make thousands of decisions every week. From where to shop to what to do with your career, there are plenty of choices that will impact your long term wealth and financial well being. If you are serious about making your money take you further, it is important that you learn how to make better decisions every day. Below you will find a few areas you should focus on.

Buying or Renting

You have to decide whether or not you are better off taking out a mortgage rather than renting. There are plenty of factors that will influence your decision. If you can’t afford to get a mortgage in the area you want to live in, and a place that is close to your work, you might be better off renting. However, if your credit rating allows, and you can reduce your monthly outgoings by buying a house on a mortgage, you will not only be better off, but also build up your personal assets.

Pension Fund Investments

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It is never too early to take out a pension fund investment account or think about your retirement savings. You need to start early, even if it is only a couple of dollars a week you are putting aside. What will make a difference is the type of funds you choose and the return on your investments. Talk to an independent financial advisor to find out more about the different long term accounts available for you.

Price Comparison

It is important that you take on the habit of regularly comparing the prices of your services. Start with your rent, mortgage, energy, and fuel, and don’t forget about the insurance. Check out to see if you can save a couple of dollars a month on your car insurance. Set up an account with major comparison sites and check regularly whether there is a better offer out there for you.  

Renovation vs. Moving

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When your home no longer serves your life and is becoming too small, crowded, or you need more functionality, you might be thinking about moving. However, think about the possible renovation and adaptation options before you up sticks and get moving. Consider the cost of arranging a new mortgage, removal van hire, and everything else, and see if you might be better off making adjustments to your current home. If you have a relatively new mortgage (a few years), you might be also facing negative equity that will make it harder to move.

Career Choices

You might not think about your career and job as a long term investment, but it really is. If you are working in an industry that is likely to be replaced by AI, or the demand is declining, it might be a good idea to look for alternative paths, so you can secure your income and financial future.

Your financial decisions today will make a difference later in life. Carefully consider your options and make sure that you are aware of the risks and benefits before you make your final choice.

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Investments And What You Need To Know About Them

Investing in the stock market can be a profitable way to earn extra income, especially if you want to continue in your current day job. However, it can seem like a hard market to grasp on the outside, and often people don’t even consider it. But it can be something that anyone can try and do, and there are many success stories to back up the success that people have. With that in mind, I thought I would share with you some of the things you might be best knowing before your start investing in the stock market.

You don’t need a degree to make a good trade

The stock market was once perceived as something only financial experts or people with degrees could understand. How would anyone know how to analyze the data and trends to make a good trade? There are plenty of software options to consider such as CMC markets that could help you out. This is because the software is automated. So it analyzes data and trends for you and automatically makes the trades. This makes it a much easier venture to get involved in.

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Make sure you spend time researching to make the right investment

Whether you decided to use an automated system or go at it alone, research is key to ensuring you make the right investment. You need to be happy with your decision and trust your judgment. History often doesn’t repeat itself when we expect it to, and even being aware of current affairs like the recent presidential election or the UK leaving the European Union can have a drastic effect on the market.

Be prepared to lose what you invest

Investing in the stock market is never guaranteed, so it’s important to be mindful that you could lose your original investment. It’s important to detach any pressure from this, as it could make decisions harder to make in the future.

Even the best traders on Wall Street make a mistake

You have to accept that you could make a mistake with an investment. But it is worth remembering that even the best traders have their bad days. Human error is a part of life. Just ensure that you do your research beforehand, so you can try and avoid this situation as much as possible. The idea is to make money and not keep losing it at the first hurdle.

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Avoid connecting emotion with your portfolio

Emotion can be hard to detach from ventures like this, especially when it is your hard earned money that you are playing with. But with passion can come pressure and often this is when the bad judgments can be made. Avoid checking your portfolio constantly.

Trust your gut and instinct

Finally, having done all your research, invested in the right software and systems you want to use, you must always trust your gut and instinct. A decision between head and heart might not be easy, but in the end, you will always know the right way to go, if you are confident in the research and experience you have.

I hope this has offered an insight and bit of inspiration to consider investing in the stock market in the future.

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How to be Frugal When at the Bar

The bar is the heart of any good weekend. Sadly, it’s also a money sucker. An average Friday or Saturday night can completely wipe out all your disposable income for the next week. In between sobbing into your drink in a fit of rage and guilt, think about how you can turn it around.

We give you some top tips for being frugal at the bars and still having a good night out on the town.

Don’t Drink as Much

This is the obvious thing you can do. You might also want to consider not drinking as much of what you drink now. Instead of downing vodka shots by the hundred, consider a glass of cheap beer instead. Most of the time, you’re paying for the brand over any genuine difference in quality.

By doing this, you’ll also make the more expensive drinks special and better appreciated when you do order them.

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Talk More Drink Less

Most people who overspend at the bars tend to do so because drinking is the main priority. It’s a sad state of affairs when you’re going out exclusively for the purposes of drinking as much as possible. You could do that at home. If you aren’t going out for the company, you might as well drink at home.

Distract yourself by talking to others more. Chat to them for longer and you’ll find yourself drinking less. They’ll also appreciate the distraction!

Choose a Different Bar

If you’re always going to a sports bar, consider changing your surroundings. A dive bar might not look like much from the outside, but people tend to be friendlier and the liquor is far cheaper. A lot of people find they’ve avoided these bars in the past simply because of stereotyping. They’re shocked at what they’re really like.

Go online and try to find a local guide of your town or city. You might even discover a small, secret bar that few locals know about.

Drink Some Water

Beer is a remarkable drink. It has the power to quench your thirst and create it at the same time. Beer actually dehydrates us. It’s why we often sweat when we’re drinking heavily. For every pint or two you order, get a glass of water. Drink the water and it will quench your thirst. You won’t feel as if you HAVE to order another beer.

Furthermore, by drinking water you’ll reduce the severity of the inevitable hangover the next morning.


The pre-gamer is where you have a few drinks before you actually go out. This is common practice amongst college students who don’t always have the money for a full night out.

A pre-gamer helps to get you tipsy and reduces your need to splurge on expensive beers and spirits in the bar. It encourages you into being frugal at the bar. You’ll feel less of a need to drink and your wallet will thank you for it.

You could even invite your friends round and have some pre-gamers together before heading out. It’s a great way of bonding without all the noise and hassle associated with a bar!

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How To Open Your Own Shop With A Bad Financial Background

As we all know, once you’re in the clutches of a bad credit score, Armageddon is impossible to avoid. It’s the end of the world. It’s game over with no more lives left on the screen. At least, that’s what we’re led to believe.

The truth, however, is a little bit different because all is not lost just because of a few bad decisions, a few bits of bad luck and an economy that is struggling. You can even start a business if you so wish; you can even open your own clothes store.

Sure, you’ll find things harder than they would otherwise be and you’ll find your financing options are a little limited, but there are still ways in which you can get that entrepreneurial ship sailing again.

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So, without further ado, here are the things every wannabe entrepreneur with a slightly grey past needs to know:

  1. Don’t Think Banks Are Your Only Option

A big part of the shadow that looms overhead is to do with traditional banks refusing to give anyone with a non-perfect credit score a loan. But don’t worry. Even healthy businesses with five years of good figures will struggle with banks nowadays. Instead, what you should do is look to alternative institutions. That could mean going super niche and looking for small business loans for minorities with bad credit, or it could mean approaching different nonprofits and microlenders, all of whom have a different way of assessing risk compared to traditional banks. In fact, what you’ll find from most of these institutions is they are geared a different way in that they have been set up to help those from low-income backgrounds, or to help female entrepreneurs or minority business people.

  1. Know What Counts

Sure, your credit score is going to be a big factor, but it won’t be the only factor. There are lots of things that lenders like to use in order to weigh up the risk. Essentially, the way a lender will look at your application is using the 5 C’s of credit. Character is all to do with your credit score and history. Capacity is more about your ability to repay any loan. Capital is all about the investments you have made in your business because this will tell them what you have to lose. Collateral is your assets. And last, but by no means least, there are conditions, which is about what you need the loan for and how you will use it. Understand this marking system and you’ll have a better chance of succeeding.

  1. Improve Your Hopes

The first step of securing funding from anywhere is having a rock solid business plan. That’s important. That’s the map that will help an investor or lender understand what you are trying to do and how you will do it. However, that alone won’t do, so also make sure you are actively working to fix your credit score and that you’re hellbent on getting your finances in order. Any steps you can make will impress a lender, and the more you can prove you are serious about it the better your chances.

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5 Ways To Clear Your Debts Quicker

However you got there in the first place, making the decision to clear your debts is an important one. Getting rid of your debt and learning to manage your money will help benefit your financial situation and boost your credit rating. Don’t be fooled, unless you enjoy a windfall, it’s not going to be easy. There are, however, some things you can do that will help you to clear your debts quicker. Help tackle your debts with these five suggestions.

1. Prioritize the highest interest debts first

When the interest rates on your debts are high, it could take you longer to pay them back. It also means that if you’re only repaying the minimums, you could find yourself paying back more money overall. Work out what your highest rates are, and aim to pay these back first. You can allocate more money a month to these debts to help pay them back quicker, remembering to ensure that at least the minimum repayments are covered on your other debts.

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2. Earn extra money

If your current earnings aren’t enough for you to make significant dents in your debts, then seeking additional income could be the answer. You don’t have to take on a second job (although you could if you were willing), but there are ways you can make money online on a more casual basis. These extra payments can be put towards clearing your debts, helping you make larger repayments without having to worry about your other outgoings.

3. Consolidate your debts

There are several benefits of debt consolidation programs that can make it easier for you to clear your debts. Provided you can get a loan with a good interest rate, you could end up paying back less than you would if you paid back all of your debts individually. It also makes it easier to manage your repayments – with just one payment to worry about each month rather than multiple payments.

4. Create a debt repayment budget

Nobody likes to use the word budget, but if you’re going to pay your debts off quicker then it needs to be done. There are ways to budget while still maintaining your lifestyle, which will help you take better control of your finances to help you to get debt-free quicker. Think of any lifestyle changes you need to make as temporary, you’ll have more money freed up when your repayments are gone so keep that end goal in sight.

5. Reduce your overall spending

Another way you could reduce your debts further is to embrace minimalism when it comes to spending.  While it may be a challenge, living a more minimal lifestyle can have its benefits. With less clutter, you’ll be much less stressed and your efforts will also help to save the environment. Even if it’s just a year-long challenge, this sort of lifestyle change could help make it easier for you to become debt-free.

If your aim is to clear your debts in as little time as possible, you’re going to need to make some changes. Give some of the tips above a try and get yourself on the road to becoming debt-free.

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How To Find Money To Invest For Business Growth Purposes

Finding extra funds to invest in your company in order to gain more growth is not at all something that should be treated lightly. There are so many interesting options that are available but in most cases you will not want to bring in personal funds since you want to use the profits that a company has in order to re-invest.

Everything Starts With Expenditure

The first thing that you have to do is analyze the expenditure of your company. In many situations there are some expenses that can be avoided. Try to control absolutely everything that you spend money on since this is something that can help you out a lot more than you may believe. Look at what you can cut and what is not actually necessary for businesses. That can bring in a lot of money that you never actually considered till now. You can do the same thing at a personal level since there are surely some expenses that you can get rid of.

Eliminating Expenses

If there are some expenses that are not actually necessary for your business, like a phone line when you can use VoIP, take the steps to get rid of those expenses. It is something that you can so easily do in order to cut down on costs and get some extra funding. You can actually cancel various services and end up with a lot of money at the end of the day.

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Getting Extra Cash

After talking with different experienced growth consultants, we found out many different ways in which we can get extra cash that can be used for investment purchases.

Obviously, you do know about the possibility of taking out a business loan. That is commonly used for companies that need access to extra income. The problem is that many business managers remain focused on just the regular business loans that are offered. Keep in mind that there are basically dozens of different funding options that any business can use. Make sure that you consider all opportunities. It is impossible not to find services that can be used to gain more cash.

Using The Money You Already Have

Many business managers understand the importance of having access to some sort of capital that would be used as a safety net in the event that something goes wrong. If you notice the fact that the company is doing well, there is a possibility that you would be able to use part of the money that you put away for investment purposes. Believe it or not, this is the easiest access to investment funds you have at the moment and most business managers do not consider it.

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Embracing Minimalism to Reduce Your Overall Spending

We live in a consumer society where we are constantly encouraged to purchase a whole host of goods that we don’t necessarily need. Sure, you might not want to throw all material desire out of the window and live with the absolute basics. But there are various reasons that you might want to consider living a more minimal lifestyle. Perhaps you’re devoted to the planet and can’t stand the detrimental effects that waste has on our planet. Maybe clutter, and junk stresses you out, and you prefer your surrounding to be as plain a canvas as possible. However, one of the most common reasons for embracing minimalism tends to be to reduce overall spending. Here are a few ways to embrace minimalism to reduce your overall outgoings.

Living on a Budget

One of the main reasons that most people end up in debt is down to irresponsible or unwise spending. If you are currently experiencing debt, it means that at some point or another, it is likely that you have exceeded your budget, or simply haven’t had one to start with. Minimalism can counteract this by discouraging excessive and non-essential spending. So, it’s time to get into good habits by creating a realistic budget and sticking to it. This is simple enough. All you need is a notepad, pen and perhaps a calculator. Sit down and note down your total salary after tax. This can be on a monthly or yearly basis. Now, total up the overall cost of your necessary expenses (this can include bills and other essential living costs). The amount that is left is your disposable income. This is how much you should have been living on. Try to avoid exceeding this, or you will end up spending money that is not your own and slip into debt. If you are already in debt, use your disposable income to make payments towards clearing your balance. It may sound counterproductive, but you should consider taking out a debt consolidation for bad credit. This simplifies payments.

Question Every Purchase

Buying goods is simpler than ever. Contactless payments mean that you don’t even have to make the effort to enter your pin in order to make small purchases. Apple pay means that you can buy a whole host of items even if you’ve left your money and cards at home. What’s more? The advent and success of E-commerce have ensured that you don’t even have to leave the comfort of your own home in order to make purchases. You can have pretty anything you could want delivered straight to your door! It’s not surprising, then, that many of us spend out of habit and without putting all too much thought into the majority of our purchases. So, it’s time to start getting picky! Before you buy any item, question your potential purchase. Do you need the item? What purpose will it serve in your life? Will you get extended use out of it? Only buy what’s absolutely essential!

As you can see, living minimally is simple. You can also save a lot of money and stave off the burden of financial debt by living in this way. It’s not surprising that this kind of lifestyle is taking off with such popularity! It’s high time that you try it out yourself.

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How to Manage a Life with Bad Credit

Living with bad credit is nowhere near as bad as it was a few years back because of the fact that it is no longer the financial death sentence it once was. Yes, life with bad credit is now completely manageable, and to that point anybody could manage it. To see how a life with bad credit can and show be managed, make sure to read on.

Always work towards bettering the credit score

If you were to ever be stricken with a bad credit score then you should always be working towards bettering it. You should always be doing so because the best way to manage the situation is to not let it worsen as that would of course make managing it a whole lot harder.

When it comes to bettering your score, the one thing that you should do is actually quite surprising: you should use your credit card more often. No, this doesn’t mean buying things unnecessarily and it doesn’t mean spending loads on your card. What this means is that you should use your card in situations such as quick trips to the shop in order to buy bread and milk — by doing this you would not be spending too much and worsening your debt, and subsequently your credit score, and you will prove to your credit card provider that you can be trusted to both make transactions and pay them off, and this is only ever a good thing in regards to the credit score.

Accept help when it is offered

In order to manage a bad credit score, you would have to accept help in regards to it and your finances in general. Simply, this has to be done. If this is not done then you would find the task of managing your adverse credit situation very difficult and you may even allow it to spiral out of control.

When it comes to accepting help, first of all you should look for help that is designed specifically for people with bad credit, one such form of help being loans with bad credit. What these loans offer those with a bad credit score is a short term way to put a stopgap in any bills they have going out or any debts that they owe, ultimately buying them enough time to deal with them in as healthy a way as possible.

Spending habits must be changed

Last but certainly not least, if you were to ever have to deal with a bad credit score then you would simply have to change the way you spend. You would have to do this because that is the only way you are going to be able to manage your credit without worsening it, and worse worsening it for no good reason. So, learn how to budget and save, and don’t be scared to put a bit of money away into a savings account each month rather than spending it on things you do not need.

Life with bad credit can be managed. In fact, a life with bad credit can still be a fruitful one. To ensure that this is the case, make sure to take heed of the advice above and make sure to consider using these appsthat are designed specifically to help with one’s financial life.

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What To Do When The Going Gets Tough

It doesn’t matter what stage of your life you’re at, or how much money you’ve had previously. Sometimes the going can just get tough when you least expect it. When it does happen, it can be a little scary for some people. But the last thing you want to be doing is panicking. The only thing you need to be doing is thinking of how to get yourself out of the rut you’re in sooner rather than later. One of the main reasons why people run into money issues is due to the holiday season, which is now officially upon us. If you feel like you’re heading towards rough waters, have a read of our advice below to give you a few tips.

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It’s unlikely that your money situation is just going to spiral within minute, unless of course an absolute disaster happens. For a lot of people, it’s a slippery slope until eventually they’re in a situation they can’t get out of. If you are some way down that slippery slope, there’s a few things you can do to try and halt your decent. The main being you need to figure out where you’re going wrong. Some people are blind to the spending issues in their life, and actually don’t realise that they’re the problem. Analyse your incomings and outgoings, and see where you’re wasting money. It could be that you go to the cinema every weekend, or go out drinking every Friday night. All of this adds up and up, and it’s money you can’t really afford to be spending over the Christmas period.


Sometimes you really need to ask for help before things get out of control. There’s a few ways of doing this. The first being a loan. They get you out of the tricky waters you’re in, as well as relieving the financial pressure you’re feeling for a while. But personal loans aren’t to be taken lightly. They can get you into trouble, especially if you don’t make your repayments on time. If you know you’re going to be careful, check out sites such as GoBear for personal loan offers. Another, probably more safer option, is speaking to your family. If they’ve got the funds to help you, chances are they always will be there when you need them. It’s much easier to speak to someone you know, and to someone who can trust you to pay it back. Some people prefer this method due to the more relaxed repayments. However, some people prefer loans as there’s no awkward stage of having to ask to borrow money.

Don’t Overspend

A lot of people are serial overspenders, especially at this time of year. One treat leads to multiple, and before you know if you’ve ran out of money. Budget each month so you know exactly what you’re going to be spending on what. Then make sure you actually stick to it. Creating the budget list is only half of it, actually sticking to it is what people struggle with the most.

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