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How to Financially Plan for a Startup Business

As the world of work changes, more and more people are taking steps to go into business for themselves. Sometimes this is done via freelancing, the gig economy, or simply by launching a startup company. However, making the right moves when launching a startup business is absolutely imperative and can be the determining factor in success or failure. One of the biggest and most common mistakes made by aspiring entrepreneurs is the failure to engage in full financial preparation. Thankfully, there are a series of steps that each person can take as they work to create or get their startup business off the ground.

Write an Excellent Business Plan

According to reports from Inc, having an understanding of the financial section of a business plan is paramount for any startup. This includes taking note of matters such as accounting, cash flows, profits/losses, etc. Essentially, the purpose of a business plan is to serve as a guide for how the entrepreneur will run his or her own business. Without a business plan, it is impossible to assess the structure of the startup and determine what is needed in order to turn it into a success.

Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs who are new to the world of business and startups remain unaware of how to write business plans. In these particular cases or situations, hiring a professional or accountant to help one come up with a business plan can be wise. Even though the added fee of doing so may seem initially scary, it is a worthy investment. The fact of the matter is that anyone who is serious about success and launching their startup needs to have a clearcut business plan. It is the only way. Going forth without one is a virtual guarantee for disaster.

Determine How to Manage the Day-to-Day Operations

Financial planning for any startup business is all well and good; however, management of the day-to-day operations is equally as critical. As noted by Startup Grind, the ins and outs of accounting play a very big role in whether or not one succeeds or fails in business. Thankfully, there are a variety of apps which can help with day-to-day tasks such as creating invoices and estimates, tracking transactions, generating receipts, managing payroll, pitching to investors, and more. The list, quite literally, goes on and on.

Some of the available apps to manage the aforementioned tasks (and others) include PlanGuru, Wave, FileThis, and CalcXML.

A Final Word

The intricate and required financial planning that comes with building a startup business should never serve as a deterrent or a cause of discouragement. While getting starting as an entrepreneur can be difficult in the beginning, the merits and rewards which come later are indescribable and immense. As automation and artificial intelligence begin to emerge into society, business ownership and self-employment will be some of the most lucrative ways to build a life and ensure financial and job security.

Putting in the work now ensures that entrepreneurs are able to reap the benefits later.

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal

How to Financially Plan for Getting Married

Marriage is one of the most amazing things that will happen in a person’s life. Entering into a union and partnership with the person that you love, cherish, and care for is wonderful. However, like most things in life, entering a marriage requires and involves planning, especially when it comes to finances and money-related matters. Chances are that both people have their own financial histories; when entering into a legal partnership, total and complete transparency is absolutely paramount. Thankfully, there are a series of steps that both people can take as they prepare to say their wedding vows.

Be Honest and Communicative

As cliche as it may sound to some people, honesty, and communication are two of the most important factors in any marriage. however, this is especially applicable when money is involved. Before and throughout the marriage, both parties need to be honest about their financial standing and positions. For instance, if one individual has debt or loans that they have yet to pay off, they should be forthcoming and upfront about it. Entering into a marriage based on lies is extremely problematic and when money is involved, problematic can turn into catastrophic. The bottom line is to always be honest, omit nothing, and make sure that both soon-to-be spouses are on the same page.

Come Up with a Budget

As affirmed by The Balance, the creation of a joint budget is very advisable for couples. A budget matters because it allows both people to assess their financial standing and then come up with a plan to meet all needs. For instance, one (or both) parties might be bringing certain liabilities, assets, or spending habits into the marriage. There needs to be an understanding of incomes, expenses, payments, etc.

Many spouses sometimes also use joint bank accounts. Joint accounts are usually used for mutual expenses such as rent, groceries, car notes, etc. However, most people do maintain ownership of at least one separate, independent account. This is great for personal spending needs, such as eating out, shopping, going to the movies, or other similar fees.

Ultimately, a budget and an understanding of who controls which accounts and which accounts will be jointly controlled is a critical step before saying “I do.”

Plan for Later in Life

Married couples who are interested in partaking in certain milestones should plan for them. Some of the most common milestones include having children and entering into retirement. The fact of the matter is that both children and retirement are very expensive. If parents believe their children will one day want to attend college, putting aside funds for their college tuition and other associated fees is a pretty good idea.

The cost of living is going up with each passing day and people need to be prepared. This is applicable to not only having children but also for entering retirement. Both parties should have enough money saved up to live comfortably without having to worry about running out of funds and having to rush back into the workforce.

A Final Word

Regardless of how much planning is done, marriage can still come with certain bumps in the road and hurdles. However, nine times out of ten, financial planning can considerably decrease and minimize the impacts of any problems which may arise.

Everything You Need to Know About Hoarding Money

While hoarding money is not really a common phenomenon, it does happen from time to time. Nine times out of ten, distrust, paranoia, and fear are the motivating factors for individuals who willfully chose to hoard cash.

An Overview of Paranoia and Money

Reports from Money Instructor affirm that the decision to hoard money is often indicative of mental health ailments such as obsessive-compulsive disorder. When most people think of someone hoarding cash, they generally imagine a frenzied individual shoving large amounts of bills into mattress holes. While the aforesaid behavior can occur, there are also other prevalent behaviors associated with hoarding money.

For example, people who hoard money are usually very particular, even to a fault, about saving on expenses. Frugality has its merits, but, as the old saying goes, too much of a good thing is never good. Someone who suffers from money-related mental health issues will frantically fret over money spent down to the last cent. They may furthermore refuse to rid themselves of purchased items, even ones that have considerably depreciated or otherwise lost their value.

Unfortunately, money paranoia is not limited to hoarding cash and taking frugality to extreme measures. Individuals who are plighted with money-related mental health issues are moreover likely to retain all purchased possessions, review bank statements on a daily basis, and refuse to use certain resources for fear of “wasting” money. Chronic money hoarders may even cheat or swindle their relatives and friends for the sake of preserving or sustaining capital.

What Prompts Someone to Hoard Money?

Although one certain cause of hoarding has yet to be found, Psychology Today affirms that there are certain factors and circumstances which can increase the likelihood and susceptibility to hoarding. For instance, individuals who struggle with decision-making, have undergone past trauma, or have relatives who hoard are more probable to become hoarders themselves. Many people who frequently hoard money also usually suffer from variations of anxiety or depression related disorders.

Unfortunately, additional reports from Psychology Today affirm that hoarding can persist as a lifelong ailment. However, there is some light at the end of the tunnel. Treatment options to combat hoarding include cognitive-behavioral therapy, antidepressant prescriptions, and treatment designed to help afflicted individuals make better choices, lessen stress levels, and learn organizational skills. The ultimate goal of professional treatment is to help afflicted individuals feel comfortable with letting certain things go and absolve the need to obsessively hoard money.

A Final Word

Each person has their own unique relationship with money. However, said relationship can become problematic when money management is taken to extreme and unprecedented levels. Paranoia, regardless of its target, is never healthy and should always be remedied when its presence is made apparent.

Overcoming the desire to hoard money and other objects may be tough in the beginning, but with the proper work, time, and treatment, it can be done. Afflicted individuals are furthermore recommended to seek out professional help to combat hoarding as opposed to self-medicating.

Authored by Gabrielle Renee Seunagal

The Importance of Investing in Yourself

When most people hear the term “investing,” they generally think of stocks, bonds, or mutual funds. While each of the foregoing elements can be very profitable investments, the best investment that an individual will ever make is in themselves. How does that happen, though? How does someone go about investing in themselves? The preceding questions are very common, however, there are several ways of investing in oneself and the merits of such investments are well-documented.

You Become A Better Version of Yourself

At the end of the day, the ultimate merit of investing in yourself is becoming a better, stronger, and more intelligent version of who you already are. Regardless of one’s current accomplishments or achievements, there is always room for improvement. As the old sayings go, “you attract what you are,” “like attracts like.” Both of the aforesaid statements are more real than most people would like to admit. The reality is that each person attracts what they are in alignment with. Therefore, in order for one to attract the great opportunities, they themselves must be great.

Hence comes investing in oneself. The Huffington Post lists a variety of ways for each person to self-invest. Some of the best methods include reading books, tackling goals on a bucket list, maintaining good health, and setting goals. Each of these actions comes with its own merits and remains applicable in virtually any career or line of work. It is very important for each individual to understand that being the best in their professional endeavors entails investing in themselves at one point or another.

You Can Learn New Skills

Many people often wonder about the most beneficial methods of investing in themselves. Aside from reading, setting and achieving goals, and maintaining good health, investing in learning new skills is arguably one of the best self-investments. Mastered skills can virtually always be transformed into capital which then creates an additional income stream. Multiple streams of income are paramount to financial success; they can furthermore be saved, spent, or re-invested for the sake of capitalization.

Learning new skills is especially important as artificial intelligence and automation become more and more integrated into our daily lives. Many people are learning that their current professional positions will face succession from robots or other forms of artificial intelligence. It is, therefore, extremely important for each person to have the proper skill sets to still be able to support themselves even after artificial intelligence fully makes its integration into society.

A Final Word

Ultimately, the best and surest investment that you can ever make is into yourself. Stocks, bonds, cryptocurrency, mutual funds, etc are all dependent upon myriad factors. However, the decisions you make, the books you read, the quality of your health, and your learned skills will each contribute to your success or lack thereof. Any individual who is serious about doing well and going places in life will invest in themselves at one point or another.

You owe it to yourself to live your best life possible and invest in the only one who can make it happen: YOU!

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal

Should You Keep All Your Money in the Bank?

In this day and age, money management is a critical skill for financial success. A considerable aspect of money management involves knowing where to store one’s funds. Although people have traditionally kept their money in banks, more and more people are beginning to question the wisdom of the aforementioned decision. Furthermore, those who are against keeping some or all of their earnings in banks are wondering about the existence of other alternatives. Thankfully, there are options for people who wish to store their funds elsewhere. The case for keeping minimal capital in the bank is also quite strong.

The Necessity and Flaws of Banks

In 2018, banks are, arguably, a necessary evil. Virtually everyone has a bank account. In most situations, these accounts are essential for transferring, receiving, and withdrawing funds. Nevertheless, banks are inherently flawed and while closing a bank account is ill-advised, exercising certain degrees of caution and pragmatism is highly recommended.

First and foremost, whenever one deposits money into a bank, it is no longer truly “theirs.” Granted, the numbers of the deposited amount shows up on any account, but in actuality, banks loan out deposited funds. These funds are why accounts which incur negative balances are still able to function in at least some capacity. Nestmann furthermore states that were everyone who deposited money into a bank to withdraw all their money simultaneously, the bank would not be able to cover it. This, in and of itself, serves as credence to the reality that your money stops being “your” money when you deposit it into banks.

Despite the aforementioned flaws, keeping somewhat minimal amounts of money in the bank is still a sound judgment call. There are still some businesses which do not accept cash payments. Therefore, a credit or debit card will be necessary in order to receive certain goods or services. Transportation via Lyft/Uber, travel accommodations such as Airbnb, and the purchase of plane tickets are several instances where a credit or debit card is required for payment.

In the case of banks, keeping some, but not all or even most of your funds in an account is the smartest decision in 2018.

Other Places to Store Capital

While many people are aware of the problematic factors of banks, they remain unaware of other places to store their earnings. While some individuals opt to keep large amounts of cash in safe boxes or other hidden places, Investopedia confirms the variety of options for those who wish to store their capital outside of banks.

Government bonds, precious metals, and other collectible assets are great avenues for those who wish to store their money outside of traditional banks. Unfortunately, there is not a risk-free location where money can be stored, however, with the proper steps and decisions, each person can greatly minimize the risk of losing capital. Many people have found that storing various amounts of earnings in different locations is preferable than keeping all of their money in one metaphorical basket.

A Final Word

Banks should be viewed and treated as necessary evils. While some people may view banks as virtually secure, this is not as accurate as most would like to think. Ultimately, the decision lies with each individual; however, most people usually feel the inclination to protect and preserve their earnings.

Authored by Gabrielle Seunagal