Government Services to Help Get Ahead

*The below services are specific to Australia but most governments will have similar services for its citizens.

The economy can seem a bit tough, but there are governmental services available that can help you break the cycle of just getting by and even help you start getting ahead. Below are just a few of the services available through the Australian government for households that are looking for ways to save and earn more money.

Government Services to Help Get Ahead

You might be surprised at what you can qualify for by simply doing a little research and following it up with a few phone calls. Help your family and personal finances by exploring all of the possibilities today. There are numerous services beyond Centrelink benefits or loans to help Australians get ahead. Charities or non-profits also have programs which may include personal loans for emergencies.

Child Care Access Hotline Number

When both parents need to work, then locating child care is no longer optional. Calling 1 800 670 305  from 8.00am to 6.00pm country wide Monday through Friday will give you access to current information on daycare and in-home care services available in your area. You'll be able to find openings to get the care services you need. There is also information about getting help with child care expenses from the Australian government.

Business License

The ABLIS, or Australian Business License and Information Service is a great place to explore the possibilities of obtaining a license and starting a business of your own. They offer complete and current information to ensure that you will know how to operate within compliance and acceptable standards. Combine your great business ideas with the information you need to create a successful venture that will move your life forward.

Employment Services

Staying on top of the job market doesn't have to seem like a second job. Job Services Australia can help you gain access to employment services throughout the country. Whether you've recently moved or are contemplating one, you'll be able to research the job openings available in real time.  There are even openings listed for those with qualifying disabilities. Keeping up with current employment opportunities is a definite way to get ahead.

Household Assistance for Carbon Cost Increases

Families and individuals that are currently receiving assistance will be eligible for increases based on the amount that the cost of carbon goods increases your cost of living. The push for a greener environment can actually benefit you and get you ahead. Be sure and check to see if you've received all of the benefits you deserve and are qualified for. Benefits include the Clean Energy Advance and nearly tripling the tax free income amounts. Tax time savings are always a welcome surprise.

Disability Assistance

If you or a family member has been declared disabled and unable to work full time, then you can receive cash assistance to help you get ahead. There is help both on a temporary and long term basis. There's no reason to have to struggle when help is available. You can even locate a job that will allow you to work part time and cover the gap with disability benefits. Disabilities can include physical, chronic illness and psychiatric. There are also benefits to help families with disabled children. Expenses can add up quickly and the benefits can help you keep afloat in a sea of bills.

By putting forth a little effort, you can help yourself and your family, get through the tough times.  The government can assist you with easing the burden of financial difficulties.

Emotional spending – Check out the ways to avoid it

Shopping has turned out to be our favorite past time. We shop when we are happy as well as sad. In the recent times, many people have become habituated with emotional spending. When you are emotionally stressed and buy something which you do not need, you are actually opting for emotional spending. Many a times, this is classified as impulse buying. This kind of spending may provide you with a momentary emotional boost but can play havoc when you think of your budget. This may lead you to debt problems and it may be difficult for you to get out of it. Thus, it is better if you could avoid emotional spending.

Ways to avoid emotional spending

Here are some of the ways which will help you in avoiding emotional spending. Let’s take a look:  
  • Know the triggers of your emotional spending: If you wish to avoid emotional spending, then the first thing that you should do is to know the triggers which lead to it. Thus, you should be aware of the temptations in order to avoid it as much as possible. Many a times, checking out fashion magazines may encourage you to go for shopping. If that is the case, then you should avoid or reduce reading such magazines. Avoid shopping with a friend who has enough disposable income. When you see someone shopping around, it may encourage you to spend more as well. There may be other triggers as well. So, you should be careful about them.
Emotional spending – Check out the ways to avoid it
  • Control your impulse buying tendencies: You will have to work hard to control your impulse buying tendencies. In order to do so, you should give yourself a cool-off period before buying anything. So, whenever a particular thing attracts your attention, online or offline, do not immediately buy it. Give yourself 24 hours time. May be when you get up the next morning, you may feel that you do not need that item. Thus, you will be able to save yourself from an unnecessary purchase.
  • Consider yourself accountable for spending: You should hold yourself accountable for the spending that you do. Make your family members know that you are trying to spend less. Ask them to poke you whenever they find you making unnecessary purchases. This will help you avoid needless spending and you will be able to concentrate on your financial priorities. Thus, it will help you avoid further debt and you can save more.
  • Engage yourself in alternative activities: Try to avoid shopping as an entertainment activity. Choose anything else that can help you to be happy. You can engage yourself in any other kind of constructive activity. In case, you cannot resist buying, you can buy something which is inexpensive like a book, a bouquet of flowers, a music CD, etc.
  • Stop watching ads: Many a times, the attractive ads encourage us to buy things. Thus, when you are emotionally weak, you can end up buying what you have seen in the ads. So, reduce watching such ads.
So, now that you know the ways to avoid emotional spending, you will be able to reduce needless purchases and save more money.

Is Forex a Safe Investment?

No matter what you might have been told, there is no such thing as a safe investment. By their very nature, all investments are prone to risk, and it is almost always a case of weighing up the degree of risk versus the reward rather than looking for something ‘safe’.

Forex is exactly the same, in that it can be extremely risky, though the rewards can be high. The difference between forex and various other investment options however, is that the trading of currency affords you a certain degree of control. Unlike investing directly in a business, leaving your money in a bank or with an investment company, forex is something that you’re in charge of. In essence, it’s as safe as you want to make it.

Risk Mitigation

When you trade currencies, you’re the one who decides where to put your money and why, using news, announcements and chart patterns to inform your decision. Markets can be volatile, and if you don’t do your research, you can lose a lot of money in a short space of time. On the other hand, you can use what you know, in combination with a variety of tools, to help you mitigate risk.

Is Forex a Safe Investment?

Another thing to consider is the different ways that you can trade. Forex is actually quite a broad term, and there is no single way in which investors gain from rising and falling prices. To say that all forex is risky would be ignoring the diversity it offers.

The most basic and straightforward method of trading is to simply buy a particular amount of currency with another one. You can also use what’s called leverage, which is where you deposit a particular amount of money, but then this is scaled up by your broker, meaning you can command a much larger position. This does of course add to the risk, as you can end up losing more than you actually committed in the first place.

Spread betting is one of the more interesting methods of trading forex. You wager money for every pip (0.01) of a currency that increases or decreases, which means that it can be extremely risky – large changes can happen very swiftly. The counter is that you can wager very small amounts of money.

If you’re looking for a hands-on investment that offers high rewards, then forex may be for you, but you should always bear risk in mind.

Investments to Have Before Hiring on Your First Employee

Starting a business is at first just an idea that turns more and more exciting as you see it is closer to becoming a reality. However, it is important to identify where the dream ends and such reality starts, so you can put together the pieces to get your business working with no hassle. Have you ever thought what investment to have before hiring on your first employee? It is time for you to analyzing what you need for a successful startup.

The Foundation Stone

Whether you are running an online business or a brick and mortar business, it is necessary to setup the "mise-en-scene," This is the necessary business arrangement to get your business going and it may consist of furnishing an office or establishing the minimum requirements that your employees need even if they work remotely at their own homes. This step is particularly important when your business is set on a physical location, so investing in setting up an office is always a good idea

Investments to Have Before Hiring on Your First Employee

Getting Everything Caught Up

Once that the business is ready to start rolling onward, make sure that you have taken into account all the aspects for its proper operation, starting with security. From health care and workers compensation insurance to general liability insurance, you need to protect your interests investing in the respective policies. This latter insurance protects your business from liability claims coming from third parties at your work place, while health care insurance and workers compensation insurance protect your employees and liability you could be responsible for in the case of an accident.

Avoid Improvisations

Although, every business starts with a business plan, many small business owners do not know what to do next and leave it out to improvisation. No matter how big or how small your startup business is, make sure to have a business project already outlined. You will not like to pay your employee for a job that you have been unable to outline yet, nor have your employee wondering what to do when prospective clients appear in your business scenario. So consider to invest time on having ready a short and long term business project.

Keep Learning and Improving

You could be the next big business genius on earth, but investing in business education is never wasted money. There are many crash courses that prepare you in the business field of your choice, as there are also seminars, e-course, and webinars that can give you the knowledge that you may need, if necessary. The world evolves at a fast pace, and investing in your education and training of your employees is also a good idea.

Attracting Investors

Sometimes investing on your own is limiting your possibilities to run a successful business. However, it is always possible to attract investors that can help you to finance your business dreams. Take your time to decide on getting a business partner, and angel investor, or someone else who will provide you with the money to keep your business growing once that it starts operations.

The Importance of Personal Life and Business

Balancing your personal life and your business life is sometimes hard to accomplish, because it is people's natural tendency to choose one or the other. Although it is advisable to keep business separate from personal matters, both of these aspects are complementary and deserve your attention. Stop for a moment and ask yourself if you are giving the importance that both personal life and business life should have.

Matching Your Goals

You cannot have a balanced personal life if you are pursuing business goals that take all of your time, nor succeed in business if you devote too much time to your personal affairs. As noted above, both of these aspects are important, and it is not about renouncing one of them, or put one above the other. Perhaps the easiest way to start gaining control of your life is making a list of personal and business goals that matches a balanced project.

The Importance of Personal Life and Business

Setting Up Priorities

Your family is probably among your top priorities in life, as it has to be to keep your business running smoothly. However, you should write down a list of at least five priorities for each of these aspects to see if they are really priorities about yourself, your work, and your family. Once done, analyze what you have in your hands and rewrite your list if necessary to setup personal and business priorities that complement each other.

Thinking of the Future

One common mistake that people make is thinking in present time when it comes to personal life and business, although a few think of past times. The past has gone, and the present is only the actual moment, so that it is necessary to look a little bit farther to make sure that you can keep up your goals and priorities. In example, getting life insurance to protect your family, projecting an investment to inject working capital to your business, and similar ideas are short-term considerations that you must keep in mind.

Time Management

The time that you spend with your family and the time that you spend in business are both valuable time, because time is an important factor. Many individuals say to give "quality" time to their families but, how much quality is it really? Some others may spend long hours at the office, but that does not mean that they are employing their time efficiently. Gain consciousness about the time you employ to attend business and personal affairs and read about time management if necessary to distribute your time more efficiently.

Personal and Business Strategies

In personal life and business, there are many similarities. When it comes to insurance, there is life insurance and business insurance. If you think of coaching, you can coach your family and your employees, and so on. Analyze what business strategies can be applied to your personal life and personal guidelines could apply in the business world. Personal life and business life are not just important, but also rewarding if you get them balanced.

Top Common Mistakes Made with Credit Cards

Nowadays, credit cards are essential to get almost anything you could have in mind. In fact, many companies condition their service to subscriptions by credit card, and some others will ask about having or not having one to evaluate you. Whether you already have a credit card or you are thinking to get one, it is important that you keep in mind the common credit card mistakes that could make your personal finances tumble down.

Credit Cards Are NOT Extra Money

Perhaps the most common mistake people make is forgetting that credit cards provide them with a credit line, which is money to be repaid with their own income. Planning your purchases based on your credit card limit is unrealistic if you cannot repay. The limit of your credit line is often a debt trap you must avoid to fall into by being realistic on how much money you can repay every month and not what is the credit card limit.

Top Common Mistakes Made with Credit Cards

Getting More than a Credit Card

Although it is often advisable to have more than one credit card, do not take this advice as a synonym for "get as many cards as you can." Effectively, some people face hard times getting their first credit card, but the second one could be easier and encourage them to try for a third, fourth, and so on. Moreover, many individuals bluff about their creditworthiness or wealth based on the number of credit cards they have, but that they often cannot repay. If you do not want to ruin your personal finances, be aware that the more credit cards you have the more debt and trouble to repay it.

Credit to Pay for Credit

This is another of the widespread mistakes when it comes to having one, two or many credit cards; getting a loan to repay the debt. The worst part of this approach to finances is that payday loans are often the easiest way to get the cash needed to make a credit card payment, but even if you consider to get a personal loan instead or pawn something to get the payment covered, you are opening the door to new financial problems having to repay those loans and their associated high interest rates.

Focusing on Minimum

What makes having a credit card appealing is that the issuer lures you about how easy it is to pay a minimal amount each month. Yes, you can repay the minimum that appears in your credit card statement, but by doing this you are prolonging your debt. The minimum payment does not cover what you owe, but only the interest and finance fees, increasing your debt rather than diminishing it.

Skipping Payments

Sometimes it seems to be impossible to make at least the minimum payment, even if you are considering payday loans as a solution. So that, you may think that skipping one month’s payment will not hurt you at all. However, skipping payments generate penalty fees and damage your credit history, so you must be aware of all these common mistakes with credit cards to avoid them.