Money and Technology

Saving, investing and making money with technology

3 Ways to Make Amazing Money As A Massage Therapist

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In the realms of careers, money often wins out the argument between doing what you’re passionate about and doing what’s going to make you good money. The thing is, too many people end up working jobs they dislike just so that they can live a comfortable life in the realm of finances, but if that’s affecting your happiness level because you’re spending all of your time doing something you’re not passionate about, that’s a problem.

There has to be a better way to live, right? Well, you can do anything. If you’re passionate about something, work hard until you figure out how to make good money doing that thing. Capitalism exists for that reason. You can succeed at anything you put your mind to. If you’re looking into being a massage therapist, specifically, here are 3 ways to make amazing money doing exactly that:

Get A Broad Education

Aside from acquiring the technical things you’ll need for your job, like massage tables and lotions, if you want to make great money as a massage therapist, you’ve got to get a broad education. Study every aspect of massage that you possibly can. Since you’re in the service industry, the more that you know about massage and the body, the better off you’ll be because you’ll be able to fit the needs and desires of your clients. Once you’ve acquired a wide knowledge-base, you can specialize,  but in the beginning, learn as much as you can.

Offer Delivery Services

As a massage therapist, you can have a space that you rent or own to keep your practice, but if you really want to make good money, offer delivery services. Sometimes people don’t want to go somewhere to get a massage, they prefer to be in the comfort of their own homes. If you capitalize on this, and you figure out the right amount of money to charge for an in-home or on-site massage, you’ll be able to take in a lot of money for what you do.

Practice Your Sales Skills

You can go one of several ways as a massage therapist. You can work in a salon of sorts and just rent out your skill set to whatever company it is your work for, or you can go solo and open up your own enterprise. The latter is often a better option because you can take in 100% of your revenue.

To do this, you’re going to have to practice your sales skills. Know how to bring in clientele, be willing to network and mingle with new people, and know how to market and upsell your products for a greater cash flow. Do bundles on services, or while you’re giving a massage, ask if your client would like to partake of one of your other services. In the moment, they might be less likely to say no.

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5 Financial Tips For Students Beginning College

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Especially for younger people, the transition into college can be a huge hit on your finances if you aren’t careful and observant of your spending habits and how your basic needs fit in. For older adults, the change won’t be quite so drastic in terms of lifestyle, but if you don’t take certain expenditures into consideration, you could end up surprised at debt factors as well.

So five financial tips specifically to help beginning college students would be to get your credit straight, live on cash-only for a few weeks to understand budgeting from that perspective, get your budget straight ahead of time, read up about student loans and interest rates, and if you’re just getting out of high school, leave the financial nest, even if it’s difficult.

Get Your Credit Straight

There are a lot of ways to get loans for school. They can come from private or public sources, they can come from the government or banks, they can come from parents and friends. But the best idea is to treat money and credit with great respect in the early stages of getting into your scholastic program.

Live Cash-Only For a Few Weeks To Practice

Something that everyone should do at some point, to help them understand finances, is to live on just cash for a few weeks sometime. It will make you think much more about the exchange of money for goods and services, and feel very different than just being able to swipe a card somewhere or hit a button on a phone.

Get Your Budget Straight

Sometimes students just entering what might be called more of the ‘real world’ don’t have the best idea of how to budget. They’ve never had to consider a limit on their spending outside of their home environment, and they can get a little lost when they have recurring bills or times when a financial safety net isn’t present.

Read About Student Loans and Interest Rates

And unless you’re somehow independently wealthy right upon entering into the collegiate system, you’re probably going to have to get some kind of a student loan. Entry processing will often just have you gloss over the number, but do that and 30 years later you’ll still be wondering why you’re paying interest.

Leave the Nest, Even If It’s Difficult

For kids straight out of high school, you may still want to rely on your parent for money. Don’t do it. Get a job as soon as possible, even if it’s not in your career field, even if it’s part time, even if it’s lousy work. Learn the power of money the hard way, and you’ll appreciate what you have more, as well as take good financial lessons further on into your life.

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6 Simple Steps To Launch Your Website

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There are many reasons for deciding to develop a website, some start a site simply to share parts or processes in their lives, others as an adjunct to an existing business, others still as a business itself. No matter what the reason, the process has become a relatively standard affair. What makes each different is the components that the developer chooses to use. What are the first steps towards bringing your website online in a professional manner?

Find Your Bullseye

You are developing a site about something. Too often individuals don’t have the proper focus on what their website will be about. Even businesses struggle to define the purpose of their website, and it becomes a less than useful tool that is bypassed by customers. Determine what the bullseye is for the audience you hope to reach, define your rings of importance out from the center. This will help you identify the target of your home page, then further define your tabs, then set your subject lines under your tabs. This is much like writing an outline for a book or paper. It provides for order as you build what you are going to build.

Platform

In this case, we are talking about the tool you will be using to build your site. Previously you would have to have someone write code or build your site for you. Presently, many of the host providers will also provide an online tool for you to use to develop your site. You can choose between Content Management Systems or Templated Website Builders.

Content Management Systems

This is an application that allows you to create and modify your online content. It is designed to eliminate low-level operations and procedures, to enable you to quickly build and change your content. These systems are highly adaptable and programmable, allowing a considerable amount of customization.

Templated Website Builders

These web builders are content managers as well; they are just designed to make the process easier for smaller, simpler sites. They further eliminate many of the processes of designing and building a site, focusing on using bigger simpler templates.

Find a Domain Name and Host

Choose your domain name carefully. A well-selected name can make a significant difference in the selection of your site. The psychology of name selection is impressive. Keeping it short, simple, memorable, and easy to type, have a significant impact on the use of your site. Most hosting services will help you with verifying the uniqueness of your selection. The hosting service will also provide you with the access to a server that will be hosting your data online, 24/7.

Tune it up

Once you have your site online, it is just a matter of tuning the site to your preferences, and updating it on a regular basis. Do what you can to keep it current and fresh, so followers and customers come back on a regular basis. The choices you made about the organization, layout, and systems can now help you as you make your updates.

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3 Unique Ways A Credit Card Can Enhance Your Life

credit card

Believe it or not, the first credit card was introduced to the world in 1950 by The Diner’s Club, Inc. The card itself was able to be used in a variety of places, but it was long after that when American Express launched as a company in 1958 providing cards primarily for entertainment and travel, and the rest is, well, history.

Today, credit cards are used by approximately 7 out of 10 Americans. As of late, there have been reservations about credit cards, but the same can be said for anything. As long as you know how the system works, you learn to manage your cards, and you pay off your debt, credit cards can actually really enhance your life. Here are just 3 unique ways a credit card can make your life better:

It Helps You Keep Track of Your Spending

Many people in the finance world would tell you that credit cards are a vice that should be shredded and burned, and that might be true for some people who are unable to control themselves and their spending, but if you get a card and download an app on your phone, or even if you just receive paper statements in the mail, the card is keeping track of where you’re spending your money for you.

This means that when you budget, you know exactly what is being spent where without having to physically write anything down. Of course, having an app will help you see where you’re spending on the daily, which will most likely help curb your spending as you go, so it’s a good idea to download the app and start tracking today.

You Can Earn Cash Back For Your Dollars Spent

Again, if you manage your cards well, you’re basically getting a free short-term loan, but the perks don’t stop there. There are many cards available on the market that have amazing cash back bonus offers that pay you back while you spend. This means that when you use your card to buy something you need anyway and the spending isn’t unwarranted, you’ll make money on that purchase. For example, Discover card allows you to get cashback that can be applied to amazon orders, but each card offers something unique so you can choose the card that best caters to your preference.

Some Cards Will Refund Your Purchase if the Company Won’t

Of the thousands of perks available out there by various credit card companies, one that is pretty cool is offered through American Express. Basically, if you buy something and decide to return it, but the company won’t take it back, American Express will eat the cost within a 90 day period of when you bought the item. The unique benefits go on, but we’ll stop it here.

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3 Simple Strategies That Save Startups Money

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There’s probably no tougher time than when you’re beginning a startup. Money and time are especially tight at this stage. The work is never ending as you try to get your product off the ground.

On top of those concerns, there’s always that nagging doubt over whether you’re doing the right thing. These are all totally normal problems that every startup — even the super successful ones — have gone through at one point.

There are only so many hours in the day, as anybody in a startup knows, so there’s not much to be done about saving time. Money, however, is a far different resource. There are ways for any startup to save money when they’re in their earliest and leanest stages.

Saving money, even a little bit at a time, goes a long way in making a startup sustainable. If you’re wondering how to stop burning through resources, you’ll want to follow these three strategies:

1. Don’t Buy New Unless You Have to, and Trade If You Can

Stocking up on new equipment, whether it’s machinery, computers or just about anything else, is especially challenging in the earliest days of a startup. Instead of buying new, it’s almost always a better idea to go second-hand or upgrade your current equipment when you’re trying to get your business off the ground. While the equipment might not have the satisfying “new” feeling, second-hand goods will be considerably cheaper and are often at least as good as a brand new version.

Scour website listings and check your contacts for leads. If you do your research right, you will likely find items that suit your needs perfectly.

Alternatively, you can even try bartering your services in exchange for other services or equipment. This isn’t uncommon, as some startups have an unused capacity that other businesses could benefit from. Maybe you’re an exceptional bookkeeper who can help out, or perhaps you have top-notch programming skills. Whatever it is, you can use those skills to save money and help out a fellow business owner.

2. Turn to the Gig Economy If Needed

Money can be your best friend or biggest enemy when at a startup. To earn some extra cash on your own time, consider the gig economy. Time is no doubt tight, but there are a number of micro-job sites out there where you can put your skills to use.

Helping out with some coding, for instance, won’t make you rich or solve all your financial troubles. It does, however, help stretch out your money so it can last longer than it otherwise would.

If you’re starting off in the gig economy, keep close records of the time you spend and the money you earn to see if the jobs are worth your time. In some cases, the money isn’t worth the time. If you play your cards right, however, then you can earn a decent amount of money.

3. Know the Most Important Numbers

Data is totally underrated as an asset, even though it’s one of the most valuable things a startup has. If you track your data, whether it’s sales, website traffic, engagement, etc., then you can make smart decisions. The right calls based on the data will make your startup more efficient and ensure you aren’t wasting your resources.

These numbers don’t have to be solely about customers or revenues, either. Knowing internal figures about how your startup is operating can ensure you’re investing in the right places. For example, businesses report that 74 percent of ongoing client communication is done by phone. If that figure applies to you as well, then you’ll be able to come to a sound decision about what kind of communication system to use.

Getting Into Good Habits

There are so many things to stress about at a startup, but developing good financial habits will lessen those stresses. Follow these practices, and you’ll find your startup in a strong position.

Image by iDriss Fettoul

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An Overview of The Cost Involved In Home Loan

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Owning a home is a lifetime ambition for many. Arranging finances for your dream home from your own funds is a tad bit difficult; spiralling real estate costs have made it a hard task for the average middle class Indian to own a home without the support of a Home Loan.

A Home Loan is the most popular source to finance a home purchase. Before you decide to sign on the dotted line of the Home Loan agreement, it is necessary that you examine the clauses in detail so that you’re not caught unaware in the future. You also need to arrange a guarantor for Home Loan. Interest on the Home Loan, calculated with a Home Loan emi calculator is not the only charge that is attached to a Home Loan. There are other cost involved in Home Loan.

Charges and fees with respect to a Home Loan

* Processing fees

All Home Loan borrowers have to necessarily pay the processing fees levied by the lender. This fee is charged towards verification of documents and other loan related procedures. These charges vary between banks as they have the liberty to fix the processing charges. Usually, most banks and NBFCs charge between 0.25 % to 1.00% of the loan amount as this fee.

The loan processing charges needs to be paid at the time of making the Home Loan application itself and is non-refundable.

* Home Loan insurance

Home Loan repayments in the form of EMIs can take a toll on your monthly finances. It is also a high risk situation for the lender as well. Home Loan insurance cover is taken to cushion against such exigencies. Most banks, especially in case of Home Loans taken in the recent past, have mandated the need for insurance cover. The plan covers only the outstanding loan liability.

* Legal and technical verification charges

After you submit your property documents, the bank’s legal team verifies the authenticity of the documents.  Your antecedents and your financial history are tracked to assure that you’re a genuine borrower who has the repayment capacity. A technical verification is conducted to check the project viability in case you’re taking a Home Loan for an under-construction property.

* MODT charges

Memorandum of Deposit of Title deed charges are levied on all Home Loan borrowers. It is an undertaking that you‘re depositing the title deeds on your own volition in return for a loan. This

undertaking needs to be registered, thus needing the payment of stamp duty which is usually 0.1% to 0.2% of the Home Loan.

* Loan conversion fee

If you want to benefit from the falling Home Loan interest rates, you can switch from fixed to floating rate loan. However, the bank will charge a conversion fee/switching fee—about 2% of the outstanding loan is generally charged.

* Prepayment charges

In case you have idle funds and want to make a prepayment, the bank may allow you to do so at some extra cost. Generally, it is around 2% of the outstanding loan and varies between banks. The prepayment charges are applicable only on a fixed rate Home Loan.

The cost of the Home Loan actually increases after taking into account all these costs. After availing the Home Loan, if you default on the EMI payments, you will be levied late charges as well.

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Tips For Making Your Technology Last Longer

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Devices like laptops and Smartphones have an average life of about 2 years.  However, this number isn’t set in stone.  This amount of time can easily be extended or decreased depending on how well we take care of our gadgets.

The way your devices will treat you is a direct reflection of how they will treat you. By taking the proper precautions and treating your device carefully, you’d be surprised how long your things will last you.

Not all of us have perfect credit, so often the option of replacing a broken device unexpectedly simply isn’t an option!

Follow these tips for preventing damage, and you’ll wonder how you’ve ever broken anything before!

Keep Your Device Out of the Rain

If your iPhone begins to act up and you take it to the Genius Bar at the Apple store, the first thing they are going to check is if it has water damage.  If it does, it does not fall under warranty.  Avoid contact with water at all costs.

The same goes for a laptop.  When drinking liquids on your desk, take care not to knock into your coffee cup or water glass or your machine is ruined.

If you must drink liquids next to your computer, purchase a waterproof keyboard cover.  This way you can avoid expensive spills.

Buy a Quality Case

Buying a cheap case for your laptop or smartphone is too much of a risk.  If you are going to pay top dollar for a device, then invest in a proper carrying case.

They should ideally be a combination of a soft inside with a hard outer layer.  For extra protection, search for one that is shock proof.

Purchase a Warranty

Don’t skip the extra $50 2 year warranty.  It’s in your best interest! Many people don’t want to spend that extra cash at the checkout line, only to find they are devastated that they didn’t when their technology is faulty or suffers damage.

Consider purchasing property insurance as well.  This small cost each month is well worth it if you have to make a pricey replacement unexpectedly.

Power Off

Technology can be a lot like the human body: it needs to be turned off from time to time! Instead of constantly leaving your machine plugged in and on, turn it off at least once every few days and let it restart.

If you constantly leave your device plugged in it can actually weaken the lifespan of the battery, making it less effective for long periods of time when unplugged.

Try letting your device get close to being completely drained before giving it a full charge to preserve battery life.

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