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These Mistakes Can Cost Your Business Serious Money!

Whatever the other aims of your business, staying economically viable is likely to be right at the top of your list. Unfortunately, doing so is often easier said than done. In fact, many businesses go under because they end up paying out more than is coming in. The good news is that you can avoid paying out for costly business mistakes. Just keep reading to discover what they are and how to dodge them! 

These Mistakes Can Cost Your Business Serious Money! - business success image

Employing the wrong people.

Unless you can run your business entirely alone, you will need employees. However, employing the wrong people can mean you risk a great deal of money. After all, the recruitment and training process is never cheap. Not to mention the impact on the day to day running of your business that a poorly chosen employee can have. 

That is why you must make the right choice when it comes to new employees. Of course, this means paying due care and attention to the recruitment process. Additionally, considering potential employees personality types and ways of working can make the process of picking the right people a great deal more accurate and cost-effective. 

Not attending to your tax correctly. 

Tax is something that all businesses will need to attend to. Unfortunately, there can be a great deal of cost and risk involved if your company taxes are not dealt with properly. 

For example, if you do not declare the correct tax status for the type of business that you run, the government can take a very dim view. Sadly, the guidance that covers this known as the IR35 is very complicated. Therefore, it can be very confusing as to whether your business counts as inside or outside of these laws. 

The good news is that there are tax specialists such as https://www.qaccounting.com/ir35-contract-reviews/ that can review the contracts that your business operates under. Thus being able to tell you whether you fall under the IR35 regulations or not. Something that can help minimise your business’s risk of breaking the rules, and so reduce any chance that you will need to pay levies or fees because of this. 

Not asking enough for the products and service you provide.

Believe it or not, some businesses lose out finally because they do not realise what the products and services they provide are actually worth. Unfortunately, this tends to apply mostly to smaller and independent businesses. The reason being that they tend to be so eager to establish their brand, that they end up undercutting their competitors and even their own costs to gain pole position. Of course, this is not a sustainable model and can cause some severe issues in the long term. 

With that in mind, knowing the real value of the products and service you provide is essential. Luckily, this can be gleaned fairly easily with a little market research. In fact, where possible testing the market before you launch your products, perhaps with a soft launch can help you avoid costing your business a greedy deal of lost money in the long run. 

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Can You Help Your Children Onto The Property Ladder In 2020?

Owning a home of your own is getting harder than ever. With spiralling rental rates, increasing cost of living and slow growth in wages, many of the younger generation are finding their dream of owning a family home of their own is getting further and further away. So if parents are in a position financially to help, it can be a wonderful thing to do – and help to give your kids security for the future. If they are already saving hard to pull together the money required for a deposit, it can still be slightly beyond reach without a parental helping hand. And with mortgage costs frequently lower than the cost of renting,your children will be able to save money in the long run if they get that first time house. So how can you help the situation?

Can You Help Your Children Onto The Property Ladder In 2020? - family photo image
Photo by Craig Adderley from Pexels

Gift A Lump Sum

If you can afford to give a lump sum, this will really help towards the considerable costs of a deposit. Often affording the mortgage isn’t the issue, it’s overcoming the barrier of having a high enough Loan To Value (LTV) amount. If you can supply part of this, your children could be able to get on the property ladder with a new build home. When planning this move, it’s important to consider the full picture of your own future finances and possible retirement. Speak to an independent financial advisor is critical to help you make the right move. 

Provide A Loan

If you can’t afford to gift a large amount, you could act as a lending facility instead. This can be a good option if you have access to savings that you don’t need now, but will need in the future. With interest rates at a historical low, you’re not losing out on much by not having them sitting in the back, and you may be able to make borrowing some of the amount of a deposit affordable for your kids, through either not asking for any interest or keeping it very low and the repayment terms flexible. In all these matters, it’s very important to be able to have an honest discussion about money with your family and be very clear exactly what you are expecting to be repaid and when – also get this in a formal legal contract notarized by a solicitor to avoid any confusion.

Take Out A Family Mortgage

Offset mortgages, where 100% of the property value can be borrowed, are also sometimes an option. These loans would be secured against the value of your own home, or sometimes allow you to deposit money into a savings account that acts as a security in the event of non-payment. However, if your child doesn’t keep up with payments, your own home or retirement funds may be at risk. Make sure you talk about affordability and contingency plans with your children before deciding on this option.

There are lots of ways you can help out financially when it comes to getting your children onto the property ladder, but don’t forget that emotional support is just as important too – always be ready with a cup of tea and a listening ear.

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5 UK Organisations That Offer Funding For Start-Ups And SMEs

Starting your own business is both exhilarating and challenging. One of the main reasons that startups can’t get off the ground is due to lack of finance. If you’ve got a winning business plan, it’s a shame to be held back by money. Luckily there are a number of schemes available in the UK which can help budding entrepreneurs, and existing small businesses, to access the funding they need.

5 UK Organisations That Offer Funding For StartUps And SMEs - successful business meeting image
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1 . Princes Trust 

The Prince’s Trust started providing grants to entrepreneurs back in 1976. As well as funding, they provide an enterprise program, mentoring young people who want to set up their own companies. Grant applicants must be aged between 18-30, and applicants can start the process by filling in the form on the website. The Prince’s Trust believes that all young people should have access to career building tools. On the site you’ll also find links to free professional courses, and other career based content. 

2 . CRACK IT Challenges

CRACK IT is a challenge-based competition which funds collaborations between SMEs and academics. The goal is to solve science or business based challenges in society. Previous challenges have seen winners secure three year contracts and £1 million in funding. Current challenges in process include a handheld device for monitoring rheumatoid arthritis, and developing a method for tracking gene therapies. 

3. Tradeshow Access Programme 

The tradeshow access programme helps companies with promotion by offering grants to visit overseas trade shows. TAP offers businesses support with market knowledge, foreign export, and funding. To apply for the grant, you should be a UK small business who has been exploring a few export opportunities already. You should also attend one of TAP’s events. Many entrepreneurs forget all about trade shows, due to all new digital marketing techniques. Marketing yourself in person is more authentic and suited to expressing brand story.

4. New Enterprise Allowance

This grant is specifically for those who are currently unemployed, and would like to set up their own business. Successful candidates on the scheme receive weekly payments over 26 weeks, in the past these payments have been around £120 a week. The New Enterprise Allowance scheme also offers mentoring and help to set up your business.

5. Innovation Programme 

The Innovation Programme was made for small businesses who are creating innovative products or services. As far as criteria goes, past companies have worked in areas of assistive technologies, IT connectivity, data or energy. To apply for the program, your company should have under 250 staff members. Applicants should be made through Coventry City Council. 

When you’re starting out as an entrepreneur, should you take all the personal finance tips you can get! These are just a few of the funding options for small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs. Be sure to apply for everything that you are eligible for, you never know what big opportunities your applications could lead to.  As a small business or startup it’s important to take care of your financial health. To help you do this, MNE Accounting offers some great outsourced accounting services, which can be accessed on their website here.

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Study Finds American’s Most Burning Financial Questions

The corona virus pandemic has jolted people into thinking more about how they manage their finances. Even those who still have income are asking serious financial questions and considering how to save more given the uncertainty of the future. 

A recent study researched what American have been searching for during the pandemic — and the results stuck out to us. 

Study Finds American’s Most Burning Financial Questions - man searching for financial help online
Photo by Kaboompics .com from Pexels

Increase Demand for Basic Necessities

Feeding America, a network of 200 U.S. food banks, says that it projects a $1.4 billion shortfall in the next six months. This shows how much the coronavirus has impacting American’s ability to afford a basic necessity. 

And, the study backed that up with an increase of searches around how to get food stamps and where local food banks were located. Top searches included: 

  • Emergency Food Stamps: up by 130%
  • How to Apply for Food Stamps: up by 50%
  • Food Banks Near Me: up by 50% 
  • Apply for Food Stamps: up by 50%
  • Food Pantry Near Me: up by 40%

Experts don’t see the demand slowing down until the unemployment rate begins to drop. 

Americans in Pursuit of Financial Literacy

Online learning is nothing new. However, the financial impact of the coronavirus has catapulted Americans into wanting to learn more about how to manage their finances. Demand for finance-related courses is up by 200%. 

  • Online Finance Courses: up by 200%
  • Foundational Finance: up by 170%

As people have learned to accept the new normal, millions have turned to the internet to learn. There are a wealth of opportunities to learn more about investing, managing finances and entrepreneurship. 

The CEO of Skillcrush, Adda Birbir, said that she’s seen an uptick in interest in online learning since the coronavirus started, specifically from those who were working in the hospitality industry or the performing arts. And, that trend is growing. With the rise of unemployment, Americans are interested in learning new skills that can help them in their life and career. 

Uncertainty Around Affording Housing

The study found that a majority of searches around mortgages were related to how to afford paying it including terms like “deferment,” “forbearance,” and “assistance.” This was a category that had the most increase in searches month-over-month with “rent and mortgage cancellation act” up by 5,000%. The top trending search terms were: 

  • Rent and Mortgage Cancellation Act: up by 5,000% 
  • Forbearance on Mortgage: up by 500% 
  • Mortgage Deferment: up by 300% 

Overall, the study on what Americans are searching for during the pandemic reveals their most important financial questions and tells us that people are more interested than ever on how to save, manage and make money. 

Sarah ArcherSarah is a writer at Money Crashers who covers money management tips and the financial impact of the pandemic. When she’s not investigating personal finance strategies, you’ll most likely find her outdoors hiking, biking or running.

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Legal Issues That Courier Businesses Are Likely To Face

Starting a courier business is a great opportunity for entrepreneurs because there is a huge demand for delivery services. We spend more than ever on online shopping, and delivery services are becoming the norm for most goods that we buy. Although the big courier services already deal with the biggest retailers, and many retailers handle their own deliveries, there are still plenty of companies out there that are in need of a courier. 

Legal Issues That Courier Businesses Are Likely To Face - truck image
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However, when you start any business, you need to manage the legal issues, and that is especially true with a courier company. If you are planning to start your own courier company, these are some of the big legal issues that you need to manage. 

Licensing 

Licensing is a big issue for courier companies. If you are operating heavy vehicles, all of your drivers will need specific licenses. As a business owner, it’s up to you to make sure that all of your drivers have the correct licenses and they do not have any driving bans in place. If you do not check the paperwork when you are hiring people, you may be held liable for allowing people to drive your vehicles without the correct licensing. 

Driving Infractions 

If your drivers commit an infraction of some kind while behind the wheel of one of your vehicles, that can be a serious problem for you. Not only does it have a negative impact on your image, but you may also be held responsible. In some cases, if the infraction is a serious one, like drink driving, you may need to look into criminal law assistance for your employee. You can avoid issues like this if you pay attention to your hiring process and make sure that you are carrying out thorough background checks. You should also consider installing a telematics system in your vehicles so you can monitor speed and make sure that your drivers are following the rules of the road. 

Insurance Issues 

When you are starting a courier company, insurance is one of the most important things to consider. If you are delivering goods for clients and they are damaged, you are liable for that damage, so you need to make sure that you have the right insurance coverage in place to pay for it. If you don’t, you will end up paying out of your own pocket and you will soon end up in financial trouble. 

You also need to consider what will happen if one of your drivers is involved in an accident. In some cases, the other driver involved with the crash may attempt to sue the company, and if your employee was at fault, you may be forced to pay a large settlement. If you have the right insurance coverage to protect your business, that’s not too much of an issue. But if you have to pay it yourself, it could spell disaster for your business. 

If your new courier business is going to be a success, it’s important that you are able to deal with these potential legal issues. 

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