Warning! How Your Kids Could Stop You Retiring

When you are thinking about retiring money is an important factor. You have worked hard all your life to save into that pension pot, pay off the mortgage and finance the kids through university. One of the first things you may do is contact your financial adviser for the latest report on your pension. Having an appointment to chat face-to-face is beneficial as you can both explore strategies to maximize your pot. Doing this early will help you revise your retirement date, and provide you with that all important countdown.
 
retirement

It’s usually around this point in life that one of your children will ask you for a big pot of money to help them buy a house. Rarely has it ever been so difficult to get on the property ladder. It was certainly easier in your day. You may have grandchildren to consider, but you can’t help reminding your offspring you’ve only just helped them finance a car, or pay off their student loan!

It is disappointing to find yet another reason to delay the date of your retirement, but being able to help your kids is great if you are in a financial position to do so. After all, renting can cost around 50% more than the monthly repayment on a mortgage. Ultimately, your children may have no where else to turn to when it comes to financing a new home.

Be sure to go in with your eyes wide open. Be active in helping them choose an appropriate dwelling. The money from you may be coming as a tax-free gift, but that doesn’t mean you want to finance anything more than the essentials. We all have aspirations, but your children’s aspirations and dreams are for them to finance, not you. Picking one of the many small homes for sale in their desired area should be a joint decision. Both of you need to visit the property at least twice. Check there is room for improvement that can help generate equity for resale when your child is ready to move on. It should be a financial investment.

Finally, check that the property you have in mind is showing an upward trend in value. If that increase year on year is better than the interest rate you would be getting on your ISA, it could be a sound investment. Of course, if you are providing a tax-free gift to your son or daughter, you will have no investment to speak of. However, you are investing in your child’s future. You will want assurances that if you help them on the ladder with this property, they will be able to use to move up.

Once all the paperwork is in place, and the house sale is complete, you will no doubt be roped into helping out on moving day. While handing over a chunk of your savings may seem painful at first, seeing the delight on your child’s face as they unlock the front door of their new home will surely be worth it. You are a hero again!

Top Tips for Buying a Foreclosed Home

Some people feel put off buying foreclosed homes, as they are previously repossessed or distressed properties. However, there’s a chance you could do this and shave 30% off the standard market price. You would save a fortune! You may have to put in time and effort, but it’ll all be worth it when you have a perfectly renovated, bargain house. Here are our top tips:
 
Foreclosed Home

Top Tips for Buying

Don’t misunderstand this information: buying a foreclosed home can be very dangerous. This is why it’s absolutely essential you do your research before you buy a foreclosed home in Hornchurch, for instance.
  • Foreclosed homes are usually a lot cheaper, because the bank or developer who has repossessed the house want to sell it fast. The whole time the property is empty, it’s losing money.
  • Don’t think that buying a foreclosed home means you’ll have to spend a ton of money on doing it up. You can sometimes buy a new house for a bargain price too!
  • Never buy a property on a whim. You should visit it multiple times, especially with a solicitor and surveyor present so you can find any serious issues before you make an offer. It can be very tempting to buy a property when you find one for less than £30,000, but you’d be silly to think that it comes without its issues. Have it surveyed to avoid losing any serious money.
  • The more work a property needs, the bigger the discount you can expect on it. You can usually get in your new property within a few days too, but you need to consider whether you have the money and patience to make the renovations it will need. You may convince yourself that you’ll commit to it at the time, but the novelty could soon wear off if you’re finding it too hard.
  • In some repossessed houses, there may be letters indicating that the previous owners were in the red. Make sure you contact these companies ASAP to let them know somebody else is living there now. You don’t want angry bailiffs knocking on your door!
  • If you move in to a property like this, make sure you double check your credit rating a few months down the line. In some cases, your finances could get muddled up with the person who used to live there!
  • Make sure you know that the old tenants have given their keys back.
  • Completing your offer as soon as possible is essential, as you don’t want to end up losing out due to a higher offer.
  • Remember, you shouldn’t just be taking the property and price into account. Consider the area, transport, schools, and more. The area should be suitable enough for you to live in.
If you take into account everything in this post, there’s no way you can go wrong. Use your common sense, don’t make any rash decisions, and be sure you know everything there is to know about a property before you slam your money down on the table.

Can You Afford To Buy A Property? Mystery Solved

When you are thinking about buying a home, you need to know whether you can cover the costs that the property will entail. People often rush into buying a house because they think they should. Different people have different needs and priorities. What is right for someone else won't always be right for you. Before you make any serious decisions about your future, you need to weigh up the cost of buying a home. Not everybody can afford to be a homeowner. You need to decide whether investing in property is a viable option for you. So, can you afford to buy a home or not?

Saving money for your deposit

The first hurdle you have to overcome when buying a home is finding the money for your deposit. There is nothing easy about saving a large bulk of money. For the next few years, you will have to dedicate yourself to saving money for your new home. That means that any time you have spare cash, you will have to store it away in your house fund. Not everybody finds saving easy. Look at money saving tips and guides to help you. You will need to save around 10% of the home’s value to put down a reasonable deposit.
 
Buy A Property

Who will give you a mortgage

Your financial situation will determine what mortgage you can get on your home. Mainstream lenders will not give you a mortgage is you have a lot of debt or a poor credit history. Make sure that you budget for the worst case scenario. If you find it hard to get a mortgage, you might need to save a larger deposit before you get a house. That means that you will need to wait longer to buy your dream house. Improve your credit score before you try and get a mortgage.

The hidden costs of owning a home

You may think that owning a home involves simply paying the mortgage each month. There are many more costs to home-owning than you might imagine. Make sure that you understand all the costs you will need to pay before you enter into any contracts. You will need to pay tax on your home, as well as ground rent and maintenance if you live in an apartment. Make a thorough budget so that you understand the total cost of your property.

Will the value of the property rise?

One thing you will need to know before you buy a home is whether the valuation is likely to rise. The last thing you want to do is buy a home and lose money on it in the long run. Talk to Walsall UK property consultants about the property you wish you buy. They will tell you whether your property is a stable investment. You can also research the market yourself before you buy a house. Look at how the market has fluctuated over recent years. The pattern of the market in the past will give you a good idea of what will happen in the future.

Inspecting the home before you buy

A surefire way to lose money on a property is to buy a house before you have inspected it. Send a conveyor around to your chosen property before you make an offer. He or she will tell you whether you need to make any vital improvements to the house and how much it is worth. Ensuring that you find a property with no serious structural damage will be best. You need to make sure that you're not wasting your money. Once you sign the house contracts, there is no going back.

Investing in Gold: The Pros & Cons

Over the last few years, you’ll have seen a surge of gold investment opportunities. There are even shops on the high street now offering to trade gold. They’ll pay you to take your old jewellery off your hands or trade some valuable coins. The reason for this is that gold is a solid investment. In the aftermath of 9/11 it was one of the only assets that increased in value. Everything else on the stock market crashed.
 
Investing in Gold

The stock market is always uncertain. This has been exacerbated by the recent global slump, so gold was considered a safe place to invest your money. However its value has leveled out somewhat in the following ten years (probably due to this huge rise in trading). It leaves many asking the question, “Should I buy gold?” Let’s take a look at the pros and cons and see where the value is.

Pros

Gold is considered one of investments ‘safe havens’. It retains a solid footing on the stock market, rarely fluctuating too much. This is because it is not tied to currency. In difficult economic times, the government often prints more money. They do this in an attempt to increase circulation and keep people and companies trading. However, it does devalue the currency. As there is more in circulation, its real worth decreases. This doesn’t happen with gold. It retains its worth.

People will always value gold. Gold is a symbol of wealth and luxury. Its value is placed higher than most precious metals. It is ingrained into our society and culture. Wedding rings will always be made of gold and it will always be used to adorn our prized possessions. Gold holds a cultural worth that goes back centuries and will hold into the future. Very few other investments can offer this.

There is a finite amount of gold. You cannot just print more. There are only so many gold reserves in the world and it takes time and effort to mine it. Where there is a finite resource, its value will always hold. Buying gold is a great idea when building a portfolio of successful investments.

Cons

Many investors decide not to invest in gold because it simply doesn’t do anything. It is mined from the ground, bought and then kept behind closed doors. It has no practical application which means it will never see a global soar in value. It isn’t like cobalt which now has a practical application in mobile phones, for example. Gold will always be a fashion item, or a decoration. It is already as culturally valuable as it is likely to get. It means you’ll never make a huge windfall by investing in gold. Gold won’t make you a millionaire.

It can also cost you money to store it. Some investment deals will come complete with storage options, but not all. Check to see how much it will cost to store and make sure your investment is worth the money.

In the end, it’s a personal choice. There aren’t many downsides to buying gold. It is a safe investment. Many use it as a form of insurance for their portfolio. It will never make a million, but it will always keep you steady.

How Your Home Can Help Beat the Monday Morning Blues

There was a time when you dreaded Monday mornings. Trying to ease your way back into another working week was horrible. In reality it felt like you were being thrown in at the deep end, complete with headache, exhaustion and despair. Now those days are coming to an end or may be already over. Your mortgage is paid, and the kids are long gone. Retirement sounds like a heavenly chorus. After all, you’re not quitting, you’re moving on. You are about to start a wonderful new chapter in your life that doesn’t include Monday morning headaches. Or are you?

The reality of retired life isn’t quite so heavenly to some on a lower pension income. Some people want to stop work but can’t afford to. There is a way to make all those years of hard work pay. Your home has gobbled up your income in the past in mortgage repayments, but Irvine reverse mortgages can make your house pay you. A reverse mortgage is a simple way of drawing an income or cash lump sum from the value of your home.

There is no need to make any repayments on a reverse mortgage during your lifetime. Reverse mortgages like Irvine reverse mortgages pay you until you pass away. Your beneficiaries can choose to repay the loan by refinancing the house. Alternatively, a reverse mortgage can allow the bank to take over the house as full payment to clear your loan when you have died. At no point can your beneficiaries be personally liable for your reverse mortgage repayment. The lender cannot take title of your home or remove you while you still occupy it.

How Your Home Can Help Beat the Monday Morning Blues

In addition to providing an income for those who want a better quality of life, it is also possible to take a cash lump sum from Irvine reverse mortgages. This may help pay off your outstanding debts or go toward a new project or purchase. It may even help you look after a family member.

It is always a good idea to do your research before applying for a finance package. Reverse mortgages are a great way to provide some income, but you need check they are right for you at this time. Interest rates can increase the older you get so think carefully about the best time for you to apply. You will need to complete approved counselling before your application. This ensures you fully understand the agreement.

Before you head out that door on Monday morning to face another week of hard work and unhappiness, think about what your home can do for you. You have nurtured it, painted it, extended it and furnished it. You’ve fixed the cracks and tidied the garden, and even invested in some new cladding. Your house has been well looked-after and you provided everything it needed to make it a home for you and the kids. Reverse mortgages give your house a chance to repay you for your kindness and investment over the years. It's time for you.

Investing in a Commodity Mutual Fund? Read This First

Investing in a Commodities Futures Contract can prove expensive and extremely risk prone for a retail investor. Instead it is a good idea to consider investing indirectly in commodities using a Mutual Fund. However, as with other equities, the investor should remember that not all funds are created equal. So it is important to ask some pertinent questions before picking the mutual fund you wish to invest in. Your broker would be a good source of information on current funds that are doing well. If you have some idea about the market you could study them up yourself and pick a good commodity mutual fund to invest in. Here are some things to find out before you pick one.

Objective and Investment Strategy

Each mutual fund has its own objective. One may focus on income investing, another on capital gains, and a third on long term investment returns. In order to meet the objective each fund has an investment strategy. The percentage of the principal it invests in commodities will accordingly vary. It would be a good idea to scrounge through the investment documents to note how they plan to spend the money you invest and also find out who the fund manager is. This will give you a good idea of how and where your money is likely to be invested by the mutual fund.
 
Investing in a Commodity Mutual Fund? Read This First

Previous Track Record

The fund you invest in may be a new one, in which case you should find out the name of the fund manager and see how funds he has managed in the past have fared. If it is an older fund, say five years or older, then the figures of return on investment will speak for themselves. You will be able to track how the mutual fund has performed in the past and dealt with ups and down of the market. Of course the past track record is only indicative of how the future performance may be. There are no guarantees that the fund will do as well as it did in the past in the near future. That is a risk that you will have to take on your investment.

Minimum Investment Amount

Different funds have different investment amounts for people entering the mutual fund. Some funds have a higher minimum amount for individuals but a lower one for those investing through commodity brokers.  There are also different classes of shares in a mutual fund. Each class has its own value and you will spend more or less per share based on the share class you decide to invest in. You will need to find out what the minimum investment, applicable taxes, fees and expenses involved will be. Remember these expenditures will cut into your profits from the mutual find. Hence the lower the fees and expenses of a fund, the more of profit you get to take home with you.

After you have found out all the details about a suitable mutual fund, you should invest in it. Remember to monitor it closely and cut your losses if something wayward begins to happen.

Reasons For Lenders To Reject Bad Credit Loan Application!

It is the general practice with the lenders to be guided by the credit worthiness of the applicants for loans. The lenders also take into consideration whether you have any considerable savings or some assets in the form of bonds and shares. Particularly when they consider applications for unsecured realisticloans.com, the lenders do attach more importance to the credit aspect. Because, if it is a secured loan, they can have a hold on the securities offered as collateral. It is not so in the case of an unsecured loan. That is why credit plays a dominant role in an unsecured loan. If the credit score of the applicant is good, they have no anxiety about the return of the loan.

On the other hand, if an applicant’s credit score is somewhat poor, the lenders feel that there is an element of risk involved in respect of the loan. Therefore, they charge a higher rate of interest on the loan. In view of this, you would do well to improve upon your credit score gradually so that it reaches the top level. This should be done before you make an application for loan. Having a good credit score means lower interest rates and competitive terms. With these advantages, you will enjoy another advantage, i.e. lower monthly payments. So, it becomes all the more necessary for you to improve your credit score considerably.
 
Reasons For Lenders To Reject Bad Credit Loan Application!

Traditional loans are approved without much of a problem if your credit was and is good. The lenders would like to know about your past as well as present credit history. They would require complete details such as when you had credit problems and how many times you defaulted in making repayments or failed to make payments on the due dates, etc. Based on these details, they would work out as to how they could minimize the risk in the transaction. In short, your credit history, at the moment, does help the lender in his assessment of your current financial status. They form an idea as to what they could expect from you. By and large, lenders base their decision only on the past history of the applicants. Some lenders, however, attach more important to the present credit history of the applicant.

A credit report, covering the last six months, will give a complete picture and with the help of such a report, lenders take their final decision, whether or not to give you a loan. If you want cultivate a sound ‘credit behavior’ inclusive of financial discipline, you should see that you do not miss any payments and that there is default. Also you should make it a point not to make requests for credit cards or apply for loans. These acts of yours will go a long way to improve your credit score. Based on your credit details you can yourself decide on the amount of loan you can ask for.

If you have a high debt exposure, you will have only limited chances to get more funds. As already said, the lenders, while they consider the loan applications from such people with high debt exposure or poor credit score, take all these factors into account before taking a decision on the loan application. If your present credit history is good, even though the past credit history was just the opposite, lenders may adopt a lenient view and consider your loan application favorably. The interest rate and terms of payment, etc. will, however, depend on the factors mentioned earlier.

If someone is Visiting Your Home, is Their Property Covered by Your Home Insurance?

If you have visitors to your home, chances are that the last thing you’ll be thinking about is anything happening to their belongings while they are there. You probably don’t want to spoil the visit by thinking about problems occurring.
 
Home Insurance

But if there were any problems while someone was staying in your home what would happen? If there was a break in at your property and your visitor’s property was stolen would they be covered on your insurance?

You are only insured for property you have a financial interest in

It’s important to remember that your home insurance only covers you for property that you have an interest in; something that you bought or are renting. From this you can see that property belonging to other people is not covered. This being the case it’s probably a good idea if any visitors you have are aware of the situation. This is particularly important if they have any items with them that are especially valuable, see HBF for more on this. It is probably advisable for them not to bring these items with them in the first place.

What about if I am storing items for people?

You should be wary about agreeing to store items for other people in your home. Much like the property of people who are visiting any items that you are storing that don’t belong to you are not covered by your home insurance.
This is because you don’t have a financial interest in the item. You are not disadvantaged by not having it. You may feel as though you’re not being very helpful but the next time a friend asks you to look after items for them you may have to think very carefully about it.

Of course if the storage situation is likely to be long term there is one possible solution. You can always purchase the items from your friend and receive receipts to that effect. If you do this the items officially belong to you and you have invested money in them. If anything then happens to these items they should be covered by your home insurance. If at some point the other party wants their items back they can always buy them from you.

So what do you need to think about with home insurance?

If you are purchasing home insurance you need to make sure that you have enough to cover your home and contents should you be the victim of any incident. You also need to decide what deductible you want; normally if you are willing to accept a higher deductible your premiums will be lower. No matter whether you have purchased items that you are storing for someone else or not you need to make sure that all of your belongings are covered. You need to pay special attention to any expensive items, such as jewellery, that you have as you may need to take out specific insurance for these items separately.

Your Business Loan was denied. What are your options?

If your small business needs to meet shortfalls in cash for restaurants, contractors and retail stores alike you might have considered a term loans for help. Unfortunately, there are reasons why many small companies do not qualify for normal business loans. Your industry, credit score, collateral and operating history may all affect the loan decision.

Have you been turned down for a business loan? You should understand why the application was denied and then find the best alternatives. The loan’s purpose, amount, and length are all factors to consider. By answering these questions first, you will cut financing costs(interest expense) and increase the loan’s ROI.

Did your industry play a role in the loan decline? Many banks shy away from certain business models, such as restaurants, nightclubs, construction and even medical offices. Food service is seasonal with intense competition and high closure rates. Just think of the many restaurants that have closed in your area. The same factors along with changing trends affects nightclubs and bars. Contractors deal with slow downs based on the season and must often wait to get paid. Medical clinics must wait for insurance payments to clear and have high overhead for rent, equipment and staff.

Solution? Consider Industry Loans, which cater to companies in certain fields. Industry lenders like BusinessLoansDirect.com cater terms to the cash flow, risks and potential of a various fields. For instance, nightclub financing considers the need to front costs for food, decorations and liquor for theme nights or private parties. Lenders who work with doctor’s offices or construction companies tailor their approval process to consider the effect of high receivables or seasonal dips on cash flow.

Business Loan denied

Specialized loans may be an option if your loan is approved at a bank as well. Industry lenders may offer lower fees and more flexible terms than banks that approve your loan but with higher rates to compensate for added risk. If you operate in an industry with high closure rates, seasonal revenues or high A/R; an industry loan may an alternative.

Venture capital is not just about mega dollar deals in Silicon Valley or Wall Street. Crowdfunding is private equity for the masses in amounts from a few hundred dollars to millions of dollars.  There are various platforms to choose from and niche sites for particular industries, such as technology.

With crowdfunding, you state a case for why your business, product or service needs funding to countless investors. Entrepreneurs offer repayment that may be traditional interest or shares of ownership in the case of equity crowdfunding, Meanwhile, donation crowd funding is based on goodwill. A business owner may offer discounts on services or plaques of recognition in exchange for money to buy equipment or pay down debt. Be sure to check if the crowdfunding site is ‘all or nothing’, which means you only get the money if your funding goal is reached. Kickstarter and Fundable are examples of such platforms.

Conversely, Crowdrise and are flexible funding sites that allow you to keep all money raised.  You should consider setting a lower goal on ‘all or nothing’ sites and have realistic repayment on any crowdfunding platform.

In general, larger deals are better suited for ‘all or nothing’ platforms. Investors feel more secure knowing their cash will be only be used if needed funds are raised. This increases the odds of a loan being successful.

Does your business need fast cash in smaller amounts? If your company accepts credit cards,  merchant loans provide short term cash in exchange for a  percentage of daily credit card sales.

Merchant financing is an alternative to business credit cards or lines of credit to meet cash shortages. You can meet payroll, repair damage or have enough money for overhead with fast turnaround, typically just one to two business days.

Companies can also use merchant loans as leverage to expand. A restaurant can bid on catering or private parties knowing that money to buy food and decorations is available. The volume and history of credit card receipts will affect the premium/payback. A business with more stable credit card receipts will likely have a lower % than a newer company with less merchant history. Your daily credit card sales will be tapped until the loan amount and premium are paid back.

Make sure to calculate the ROI of a merchant loan beforehand, if possible.  For instance, is the profit margin on a private party more than the premium you will pay for a merchant loan? You can make informed borrowing decisions by evaluating loan in this manner.

There are more choices for alternative financing than ever before. Companies can survive and thrive with these 3 options, either as a supplement or alternative to traditional loans.a

How to Choose the Right Property to Buy

Do you want to move into a pristine property or are you looking for a fixer-upper? Knowing how to select the best property for you is a big challenge but the more you know and understand the easier the task will be, as you will see here.

Buying a property is a major undertaking – after all it’s the biggest thing you will ever buy in your lifetime. You should think about your needs and wants as well as your budget in this situation. It is a purchase you will be paying for a long period in the future.
Right Property to Buy
Choosing a good property means different things to different people. For someone who is busy and has little time to spend renovating or decorating, a fully finished property is the ideal solution. They can move in with their furniture and that’s all there is to it. However someone with good DIY skills might want to look for a bargain they can gradually do up to their own standards and tastes. This route has the potential to save some money, but it does mean living on a building site for a good long while!

It is also worth thinking about where your ideal property would be situated. Is it important that you have an easy route to get to work? You might want to live near a train station and also near some good schools if you have kids. Alternatively you may want to move out of the city and go to a more rural area with fewer people and more countryside to appreciate.

There are more practical things to think about too. For instance living near a river is charming but how often might that river burst its banks? If this should happen your property may well be flooded, leading to upset and damage for a long time to come. You never know if it may happen again either.

Every potential property should be checked for its condition prior to seriously considering whether or not to buy it. Subsidence is something that affects some properties and there is no way of knowing which ones might be affected in the future. If you want to buy a property that has already been affected in this way, you will need to get house insurance subsidence cover to account for this.

House insurance subsidence cover is generally pricier than general insurance policies so bear this in mind before you make your decision.

As you can see you should never rush into buying a particular property until you have all the information you need to do so. It is easy to become emotionally involved when buying a property, which is ironic really considering what an expensive purchase it is.

If you make the wrong decision you cannot simply move out in a hurry. You have to make sure you choose the right house, bungalow, flat or mansion for your needs – something that will suit you both now and into the foreseeable future.

Most of us move home at one time or another but in this case you can see it is easy to go through a few steps to make sure the home you buy now will feel like home for some time to come. So – which property are you going to buy?

Facing Troubles Managing Finances While Studying Abroad? Here Are Some Tips On How To Do It Right

It is a common complaint among young students who are in a foreign location, that they are not able to save. Saving is a complex procedure which is mastered by only few. But, it is not a rocket science that cannot be learnt. Today, let’s discuss few tips which have worked for students earlier and will continue to do so if effectively used.

Mind your expenses

Students are often swept away by the style of the foreign country they are studying in. With the fancy, students forget that they need to save. Students buy things that would keep them fashion forward. The new city’s cuisine is also an attraction where students usually end up spending more than required. Studying abroad is an expensive decision and little mistakes like this, would cost the students heavily. It is very important that the students restrict themselves. You can shop for your clothing needs online through Nordstrom and other sites which believes in keeping your pockets happy with heavy discounts. Before shopping, make sure that you do a quick online search and pick the best of Nordstrom coupons which would give you a discount on your purchase. Nordstrom sale is also a good option for students with which they can stay ahead of fashion while being soft on pockets. So don’t forget to use a Nordstrom promo code the next time you shop online.
 
Studying Abroad

Get your facts cleared about conversion rates and ATM transactions

This is one thing that students must clear their doubts about even before arriving. It is very important that you get your knowledge about the conversion rates of your home currency and the currency of the country you are studying in. Students often have a misconception about flat ATM fees, but it must be cleared that there are different charges that the bank might charge upon you. The foreign bank would charge you a certain percentage on every transaction that you make. Students, if have no other option, are advised to withdraw more money in a single transaction than making small transactions many times to save up on the transaction fees that the bank charges.

Global ATM Alliance- a boon for travellers and students

There are some international banks that have entered into an alliance. The banks under this alliance offer its customers freedom to use the ATM’s of other banks under the alliance without any extra charges. With an account in any of the banks under this alliance would be a positive for students who lose their savings on the transaction charges that the bank imposes on their ATM transactions.

With these simple money saving tips, students can manage their finances in a better way. It is always important to plan the budget and stick to it to avoid financial crisis. Students should learn these and other techniques when they are in a new country. They can also use some simple ways to save money like, share a room with friend, cook food instead of eating outside and so on. Shop and save cautiously and make your study abroad a wonderful experience that is not heavy on pockets of your sponsors.

A Long Way From Home — Why Study Abroad?

Studying in a new country can be an amazing opportunity, both academically and personally. You'll gain so much from the academic way of life that your life will be richer, both during the experience on undergraduate or graduate programs abroad, and, after studies, financially.

You’ll learn about other countries

Sure, you see lots of new places while you're on vacation, but nothing beats living in a new country to really know it. You'll make friends with the locals, maybe learn a new language, do your grocery shopping in local supermarkets — the list is endless. You're totally immersed in a new culture, really experiencing everything and having a true adventure.

You’ll learn about your own country

Once you live in a new place, you'll be able to see your own country in the context of the whole world, instead of just in the context of the one place you grew up in. You'll understand how your country fits into the wider world, and you'll begin to appreciate your country's traditions and history so much more.

You’ll increase your career prospects

International experience looks amazing on your resume: your future employer will know that you're not afraid of new experiences, you're adventurous and intrepid, and you have a wide knowledge base and confidence to bring to a new role. You'll be even more employable than you were before, and you'll end up with a great job.
 
Study Abroad

You’ll make new friends and forget old stereotypes

Your old friends are great, but you can never have too many new ones. Having friends all over the world is a lifelong gift: you'll always have people to visit and people who want to visit you! Not only that, but these new friends will teach you about the world and you'll learn that everyone is different and no one fits your predetermined beliefs about other cultures and people.

Academic advantage

Whether you're taking a year abroad as a small part of a degree in your home country, or studying an entire degree in a new country, you'll find that your educational experience will be much richer because you left behind the familiar and embraced new cultures in a new land. You'll learn more, gain further skills applicable to your future, and learn to grasp all opportunities that come your way!

Travel

On weekends and study vacations, you'll explore the surrounding areas and maybe even further afield. It's a great opportunity to see countries you'd never have thought to visit from your home country, and you'll have so many amazing stories to tell when you get home!

Widen your horizons and take a step towards a successful future by studying in a new place and meeting as many new people as possible. You'll never be the same again, and you'll never regret it!

How To Remain Disciplined While Trading In Forex?

Discipline, is simply a code of conduct that is devised by people in order to train their body or mind to learn a specific action. It is not a course of actions but a strict guideline on how to perform a certain task with ease and perfection. Forex is one of the most liquid markets and promises of high profits and high losses. This situation is similar to a captain trying to commandeer his ship in the rough seas. With proper discipline among his crewmen the captain can take all the necessary measures to muster his ship through turbulent waters. Similarly, in a turbulent market as foreign exchange, it often becomes essential for traders to practice utmost discipline in their trading habits to derive the maximum profits in the market for a long term. Here are a few tips on how to practice disciplined trading and create a long term standing in the forex market. 

Changing the Trading Habits

Believe it or not, the key to success in forex trading lies in the regulation of your forex trading and changing your trading habits. It is your trading habits that make you different from the millions of other traders across the globe and one must learn to act like the successful players in the market. Here are the few important habits that most successful traders follow in the forex market.

  • Limiting Screen Time – While analysis is important when entering the forex market, keeping a close eye on the charts all day can lead to a feeling that you can predict the market’s behaviour. Like overtrading, over analysing the trends and charts after making a trade is the leading cause of losses in forex. A successful trader sleeps in peace while a gambling/losing trader spends several caffeine fuelled nights hoping the trends would change according to his predictions.
Trading In Forex
  • Maintaining A Trading Journal – A trading journal not only provides you with the exact data of your trades and their details but is also a great place to write down your feelings when faced with a certain situation. This provides you with a really helpful insight on your own trading behaviour and helps you pinpoint the flaws and strong points in your strategy.
  • Patience is a Virtue – I cannot fathom the importance of patience when it comes to forex trading. Unlike other types of investments that grow in a defined manner, forex market is subject to a lot of ups and downs. Hoping for the market to change its ongoing trends is similar to hoping to see a Penguin in the North Pole. The best strategy is making a calculated trade and leaves the rest to the market before you make any move.
Identify Your Winning Edge

Once you have fully understood the nature of forex market and dedicated yourself to learning the art of trading it is important for traders to identify their edge in the market. The trading edge is often a personalised trading strategy that helps you anchor your entry in the market. Following the price action trading strategies will help you clearly identify your entry point in the market. Determining the entry point is important as you do not want to double your losses or limiting your profits by jumping in a fluctuating market.

Plan Your Trade

Making a strict guideline and following it through the course of the trade will often help you avoid letting emotions get the better of you. Most people who do not follow a plan will either suffer from losses or will only turn into greedy traders when met by initial profits through sheer luck. Keeping a track of all your trades, proper analysis of your own trading behavior will certainly help you eliminate the bad points and maximize your profit earning potential.

Be it military or business, following a disciplined course of action is the best way to achieve success. The above mentioned tips will save you a lot of time and money from learning forex trade through trial and error.

About the author: Luke Peters is an avid reader of books and other literature related to finance, forex and financial management and is the current contributor for several websites related to the respective niches. He is also an active trader on online forex trading platforms like www.cornertrader.ch and is well experienced in the art of forex trading.

Challenges Faced By Women Entrepreneurs

After the growth in woman empowerment in the late 20th century, it is a common sight to see more and more women coming out as entrepreneurs. During earlier times, business and commercial activities were strictly male dominated territories and it was only after the emergence of women after the Second World War that helped them gain a strong social footing and several women entrepreneurs like Oprah Winfrey and Coco Chanel showcased the power of women in business. Even though the number of women in the field of business and Entrepreneurship is growing at a steady rate, one cannot deny the fact that women entrepreneurs face some extra challenges. Here’s a list of some of the most common challenges face by women entrepreneurs.

1. Gender Discrimination

Although women entrepreneurs are rising in numbers, the number of males still overpowers them. It is quiet common for new women entrepreneurs to be intimidated by the male executives. Women also have a harder time at accumulating capital for their business ventures even though in reality they are less likely to default on their loans as compared to men. Studies also show that most men have a major lack of trust in women and the deal they are offering. Women also tend to have fewer personal assets as compared to men and generally need to procure additional funds as compared to men.
 
Women Entrepreneurs

2. Emotional Aspects

Females are known to be emotional creatures and no matter how hard they try to act like men, they often crack in tense situations. For men, owning and running a business is more about meeting the bottom line and taking decisions for the greater good of the organizations. Women can easily get emotionally attached to people and have a more relationship-building approach. While this benefits the organization to a certain level, it can also stand as an obstacle to important business decisions like lay-offs and cancellations of service agreements.

3. Result-Oriented Decision Making

The first and foremost quality of entrepreneurs is their ability to make profits and bear losses. Business requires an immensely stable temperament and the owner’s ability to guide the organization through a mixed bag of profits and losses. Studies show that women tend to be more result-oriented than men and are immensely afraid of failures. While this makes them do a lot better than men in several areas like academics, it limits their ability to take higher risks. Business is all about taking calculated risks in order to make large profits and create an iconic brand image. Compared to men, women are more scared of taking risks and often go for the tried and tested methods instead of trying something revolutionary.

4. Lack of Support from Other Females

It is an old saying that ‘women are their own worst enemies’. Several behavioral studies show that while men easily trust and support other males, females have a hard time getting along with other females of equal stature. Especially when there is a serious lack of female entrepreneurs, women often try to be liked by everyone around them and show an unnatural disdain if another female tries to stand up to them. Due to the low numbers, females often lack the support and camaraderie from female peers.

5. The Need For Balance Between Family And Business

Achieving a perfect work-life balance is one of the primary goals of entrepreneurs. This can be a troublesome situation for female entrepreneurs as they might have to deal with work and business simultaneously. It is extremely difficult to run a business while being a mother as one needs to allot unspecified amounts of time to both. Women are often associated with the house related tasks and often face trouble maintaining a work-life balance.

The above challenges are few of the major challenges that the women entrepreneurs face around the globe in the current business market. Despite of these challenges, statistics show a steady rise in the number of women entrepreneurs around the globe, thanks to the rising awareness and the defacement of social taboos through education and media. Additionally, several social and political reforms are also aimed at women empowerment.

About the author: Luke Peters is an avid reader of topics related to finance entrepreneurship and marketing and likes to stay up to date with the latest news in the market. He is also a content contributor for several finance related blogs and websites such as mediagrouplondon.com which is a Full Service Financial Marketing Agency.

How to Avoid Hidden Banking Fees

No one likes to pay bank fees; it really does feel as though it’s just wasted money to most people. There are ways you can avoid hidden bank fees and charges – banks are required to be transparent with their fees, and many banks like BOQ now offer fee-free transaction accounts like day2day that allows you to avoid fees entirely. You should always read the fine print to ensure the way the product works actually suits you and the way you earn – and spend – money. For example, some transaction accounts are only free if you maintain a minimum balance. Here are a few more bank fees you might not be aware of, and tips for avoiding them or reducing their impact.

ATM Fees

While your bank won’t charge you to use their ATMs, other banks will charge you for accessing your account through their ATM network. This is because you are not their customer. Is there a way to avoid this? Actually, there are a couple of things you can do. First, you can avoid using ATMs that belong to other banks. This may be difficult if your lender is an online bank with minimal branch or ATM presence. However, many online and smaller banks now offer access to your funds from other institutions’ ATMs, and you do not have to pay a fee. If your bank is one of those without many branches or ATMs, ask about deals like this, and also get their advice on how to avoid paying ATM fees in future.

How to Avoid Hidden Banking Fees
Cheque It Out

Do you have a chequing account? Do you need a chequing account? Of course, many small businesses have these accounts and do need them, using them for business transactions on a day-to-day basis. But cheques are one of the most expensive ways to move money around, and the slowest. If you do not really need your chequing account, consider getting rid of it altogether. Every cheque written attracts a fee; every cheque processed also attracts a fee. Talk to your bank – you may be surprised at just how much your chequebook is costing you. If you really do need and use your chequebook, see if you can minimise your use of it. Are there bills you can pay by credit card or Bpay? Can you have any incoming monies deposited directly into your accounts? At the very least, you’ll want to check out your options on this one.

Ask For A Break

Finally – talk to your bank. If you find you’re losing a little of your hard earned money every week or month via bank fees, head on in and front them about it. Ask them how you can pay less in bank fees and see what they have to say. You may find they waive a fee or two simply because you asked – it can’t hurt to try.

Bank fees are the bugbear of almost every banking customer, but you don’t have to wear all those costs all the time. Talking it out with your bank can make a difference, as can ensuring you’re not paying for account features you don’t really use or need.

Do you have any tried and true methods for avoiding hidden bank fees? If so, share your insights in the comments box below.