Sunday, May 26, 2013

4 Financial Aspects to Consider Before Starting Your Own Business

Starting your own business is an exciting opportunity, however it can also be quite daunting. There are so many things that you need to think about to ensure that you are financially ready, and ignoring this can lead to disaster down the track. To ensure the very best chance of success, here are 4 essential financial aspects to consider before starting your own business.

Strengthen Your Situation

Before you start planning your new business, you should take some time to evaluate your own personal financial situation. Make sure you have a great budget in place to help you manage your start-up costs, and work on your credit rating particularly if you’re looking to apply for a business loan to help you get started. To allow you to prepare adequately, you should make a decision fairly early on about whether you will be financing your venture with your savings, or whether you would prefer to take out a loan.

Consolidate Your Debt

An important part of strengthening your financial foundation is to work through reducing any debt you currently have. One of the best ways to do this quickly and effectively is to consider consulting with a professional debt consolidation company such as Australian Debt Reduction. They will give you tailored solutions that are directly targeted at reducing your personal debt as fast as possible, and can help you regain control of your finances sooner.

Work on a Plan

A business plan gives your new venture a sense of purpose and direction, and is an essential step in the planning process. Within your business plan, you should include a structure that indicates what you want to achieve and when. You can then start to include financial goals and expectations for each stage in your new business’s development. Having a solid business plan is especially important when you want to impress your financial institution or lender, as they are far more likely to approve your loan application when you can present a detailed business plan.

Get Your Business Budget Sorted

Before you commit to starting up your own business, you should have an in depth understanding of projected costs and returns. Planning a business budget is essential to the success of your venture, and it’s something you can work on in the very early stages. Think about what your costs are likely to be, and don’t forget to include all of your expenses such as rent, power, paying staff, marketing, licensing and any specifics relating to your particular line of business. Knowing the approximate weekly cost of your new business can give you a better understanding on what you’ll need financially in order to get it off the ground.

With a bit of extra work and preparation, you can ensure that your business has a much better chance to survive over the long term. These financial considerations are all very important steps in the planning stages of your business set up, and by keeping them in mind, you are putting all the odds in your favour. Get a head start on your start up by remembering these important financial aspects when starting up your new business.

Marion is a small business coach from Brisbane Australia and is an active blogger amongst the online business community.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

5 Interesting Government Jobs for financial establishment

In these contemporary times, many people in Australia have become receptive to the idea of working for the government. Individuals who are interested in doing so should recognize that there are a wide variety of government jobs that they can apply for. Because this is the case, it is ideal for individuals seeking employment to carefully consider a plethora of job types in order to decide which one is most fitting for them.

1. ACT Public Service

One state government job option that individuals in Australia have is working for the ACT Public Service. (Those who are unfamiliar with the ACT should note that its goal is to provide accessible and responsive services to Canberrans. The ACT contains nine directorates, including the Chief Minister and Cabinet, Community Services, Economic Development, Education and Training, Environment and Sustainable Development, Health, Justice and Community Safety, Territory and Municipal Services, and Treasury.) The ACT offers the public a variety of jobs, including health professionals, event managers, rangers, policy advisors, and many more.

2. Administrative Officer

A position as an Administrative Officer will generally involve managing personal tasks and paperwork that ensure that the day-to-day operations of a business run smoothly. The Northern Territory Government is in search of candidates who possess secretarial, legal, health, medical, recruitment, and ministerial job skills for this position.

3. Nursing

Individuals who enjoy administering care to others may profit from pursuing a career in nursing through the government. With Northern Territory Government, more opportunities have become available for nurses in fields as diverse as renal nursing, mental health, acute care nursing, community health, and remote area nursing. The Northern Territory Government also offers a graduate program to help prospective students increase their knowledge and skill set in the field.

4. Police

People who like to make sure that community citizens are safe may be interested in pursuing a career as a police officer. With the Northern Territory Government, police officers are expected to perform five core functions. They include: Upholding the law and maintaining order within the community Protecting individual life and property preventing, detecting, investigating and prosecuting any offences Managing road safety enforcement and education managing the services that are provided in emergency situations

5. Fire and Rescue

A government career as a firefighter can be ideal for many people, especially those who enjoy preventing others from injury and death. With the Northern Territory Government, people interested in a firefighter career enjoy great benefits such as paid training, great working conditions, 9 weeks annual leave, and ongoing learning opportunities. However, becoming a fighter comes with several stipulations, including having no significant criminal history and proper certification. If you are interested in any of these or other government jobs in Australia, you can go online and research the various opportunities that exist. Many government jobs offer individuals competitive pay and great benefits, so be sure to compare your opportunities in order to find the position that is most personally and professionally profitable for you.

Nicole is a recruitment agent and has been for the past 3 years. She aims to help her clients find jobs and guide them in the right direction. She started writing blogs to share her knowledge to others who are looking for general help and ideas to get them started on their career.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

3 Ways to Get Your Teen to Understand Saving

When you’ve got a teenager, it can be frustrating to see them mismanage their money. It’s hard to get them to establish good savings techniques without coming across as controlling or over-protective. On one hand, you feel an obligation to impart the very best financial knowledge that you can, on the other you don’t want to create any unnecessary tension. Here are 3 ways to get your teen to understand the importance of saving.

Work On a Budget Together

A good budget is what underpins any successful savings plan, so it’s a good place to start with your teen. Help them to work out a clear budget that allocates a certain amount of savings every week, as well as covering any expenses that they might have. Without a budget, it’s hard to keep track of weekly spending and savings, so your teen will quickly be able to see the benefits of a good budget.

For more information and quality financial advice, go to and see how Fox Symes can help you and your teen to create a great savings plan and stay in control of finances over the long term. They can assist with budgeting tips and debt resolution strategies, as well as providing personalised financial advice tailored to your needs.

The Importance of Long Term Goals

Ask your teen what they really want to achieve with their savings, and help them to put it into a rough timeline. If they’re saving for a new car, work out how much they would need to put away per week to have saved up enough to get the one they want within a year. By spelling out their long term goals, you are helping your teen to understand why their weekly contribution is so important, no matter how small it may be.

Extra Incentives

Some parents advocate the advantages of incentive based savings. In this scenario, you reward your teen for their hard work with something they enjoy, whether it’s treating them and a friend to a special screening of their favourite movie or organising an adventure event for them. Whatever you choose should be based on your teen’s preferences, and can really encourage them to dedicate themselves to their savings.

While it may seem strange to reward their savings efforts by spending money on them, just remember that it is the habit of saving that you’re trying so hard to instil in them. Once they have these good savings habits, they are far more likely to stick to them as they grow up, and incentive based savings plans can definitely help them to find the initial motivation to be careful with their money.

These are simple yet effective ways to ensure that your teen understands the importance of saving without damaging the relationship between you. For a bit of extra assistance and information, consult the team at Fox Symes to ensure that you have the very best strategies to handle your teen’s financial situation as well as your own. Getting your teenager to understand the importance of saving may not be easy, but it is definitely worth it! The important part is to start early, so schedule some time and sit down to discuss a savings plan with your teen today.

Kelly is a mother of 2 teenagers and an active blogger across a variety of topics of interest to her.

Monday, May 20, 2013

5 Productivity tips for small business

Productivity is essential for business operations to run smoothly and efficiently. Increasing productivity will stimulate employee drive and enthusiasm which will benefit a number of other areas of the business. It is normal for small business owners to take on most of the tasks themselves. This can sometimes become a little overwhelming. You may find that you have to do too many mundane chores, instead of spending time building up your small business. By making a few changes to streamline your small business, you will soon notice an increase in productivity.


A Managed Service Provider is something every small business should consider. If you are not tech savvy, a MSP will take care of all aspects of IT. MSPs provide business owners with consultation, support and maintenance of all issues relating to IT. They, in fact, act as your company’s own personal IT department.


Employees all work at different levels of skill and a good employer will know which ones to group together. By putting together a team of motivated, observant and diligent employees, this can increase small business productivity levels which can lead to increased sales. Be sure to reward employees who are dedicated and hardworking. This could encourage a greater level of productivity from all employees. Keep employees happy and they will stay motivated and alert.


Try to downsize or even eliminate the use of paper. Use electronic media for as many emails, newsletters or announcements as possible. Utilise technology to its full extent and you will notice an increase in productivity. There are many software packages available that can assist you with this. Take advantage of tools and software to automate anything you can.

Virtual Assistant

Rather than employing an admin assistant to come into the office, it is often more productive for a small business to hire Virtual staff. This way you can outsource office work for short or longer periods of time. They have all the skills of a professional office assistant; they will answer the telephone, do data entry, write content and arrange printing.

Keep in touch with your customers

It is important to know your customer. As a small business owner, you should take time to get to know your customers. It also important to hold on to existing customers. Make sure you connect with them by holding the occasional after work get together or speaking to them face to face. Ask them if there is anything you could do to improve the business. Work with your customers and they will reward you by referring your business to friends and colleagues through social media sites or word of mouth.

Another time saver is to organise custom printing services online. You can personalise and customise high impact brochures, professional good quality business cards, coupons and promotional items. You can coordinate colours and fonts and choose a design and upload photos. The great advantage with online printing services is that it can be done at a time convenient to you.

John is an entrepreneur and has 2 businesses currently running in Brisbane. In his past time he writes blogs about all the things he’s learn about running a business.

Friday, May 17, 2013

How to Create a Realistic Budget for the Family

Budgeting sounds boring but it is the best way to take control of your family finances and work towards a savings goal. It takes time to set up a budget and make it work and you will need to spend a couple of months looking at where your money goes and why you seem to have so little. This also helps to take control over the necessary payments and those that you make for special occasions and on a whim. Here are some tips to create a realistic budget for your family.

1. Look Over Previous Statements : Pull out your past bank statements. If you can, pull out the ones from the last year but six months is often enough to make a budget work and see your spending pattern. It is worth using different coloured highlighters to mark all those payments that were a necessity – your rent, insurances and utility bills – and those that were for a special occasion, on a whim or due to an emergency. It makes it easier to see your spending at a glance rather than constantly trying to track everything.

2. Know Your Income : Over the six months, use another colour to make all the income clear. You may just have one or two sources – your employment pay – but some people are paid through benefits, have second jobs or other sources of income. Mark everything and then tally up the total for the time period. Only mark of the regular forms of income – birthday money, inheritance and other one-off payments don’t count since you can’t guarantee they will occur each year. Once you have the total of the income, split divide it by six or 12 (depending on the number of statements) to work out your monthly income. This is the amount you have to spend each month.

3. Cover Your Necessities : You necessary payments must be covered. Make sure you take off your rent, utility costs and any others that you have to make, such as regular loan payments and insurance costs. This will give you the remaining amount of money you have for other payments. But that doesn’t mean you can spend them on anything!

4. Clear Your Debts and Save : Do you have any debts? You may have a credit card bill that is still gaining interest or money that you owe a friend. Make that a necessity so you only pay as much as you really have to. The sooner you are out of debt, the sooner you can start saving for the future. If you have no debts – good on you! – work out a savings plan so you put money away for the future, for emergencies and for your children (if you have any!).

5. Have a Budget for the Week : There are all sorts of things that you may want to buy during the week. With the rest of the money, split it up so you each have a budget for the week. If you struggle to stretch that budget, look at ways that you can cut down your spending, such as by making your own packed lunch or forgoing the coffee on the way to work. Only spend the amount available so you don’t overspend. Also, have some money left over for any special occasions coming up, your travel costs and other one-off payments that you may need to make during the year.

Budgeting doesn’t mean you have to live a boring life. It takes time to set one up but you can create a realistic one so you can still enjoy your money. Make sure your necessary payments are made first and then look at treating yourselves and save for the future.

Clarence Evans is a financial analyst who works with a company providing support systems for various firms. He studies everything, from financial conferences, e-learning activities about finance, or even the twitter feeds of knowledgeable finance point persons such as Reza Bundy. Follow him on Twitter @ClarenceMEvans

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

5 Reasons You Need to Start Saving Today

You never know what the future is going to bring. You may get that thousand pound inheritance that you’ve always wanted but can you really rely on it? You need to start saving money today. Even if you have debts, putting some money aside is worthwhile. Here are just five reasons to start saving now and live for the future.

1. Have an Emergency Fund Right There : You don’t want to get into more debt just because of an emergency. You should have to deal with overdrafts and credit cards to be able to fix the car, the boiler or even make sure you can have the medical treatment that is necessary. Saving money will mean that you have an emergency fund that you can rely on. This is the one type of savings account that you need to start, even if you do currently have debts. You never know when you will need money for something.

2. Save for Your Retirement : There are constant changes to retirement plans. The retirement age is getting further away and there is no guarantee that the law will remain the same by the time you reach that age! There’s no real guarantee that there will be a state pension when you come to need it. The best thing that you can do is save for your retirement – this is especially necessary if you are self-employed or run your own business. Work out the amount that you want to live on in the future and then how much you need to save each month to get there.

3. Save for Your Child’s Tuition : Tuition fees are constantly on the rise. At the moment there is a £9,000 cap, with the majority of universities opting for that, but that cap could change with the next government. If you don’t want your children to start off their graduate lives with thousands of pounds of debt, start saving for their future today. Even if they don’t go to university, that money will not be wasted; they could use it as a deposit on a house or something else that they want when they are old enough.

4. Save for Your Own Holiday : Everyone deserves a break but too many people worry about that because of costs. Instead of worrying about whether you can afford to go away, worry about whether your boss will give you the time off or whether the weather will be perfect! Start saving today for your holiday fund. It doesn’t have to be a lot, depending on the type of break that you want. This should also give you money to spend while you are away. You can then do it every year and take a break that you have always wanted.

5. Save for Your Luxuries : If there is something that you want to buy but know that you can’t afford it, save up instead of using credit cards! This will take some time and it may mean your luxury disappears off the shelves but something better is likely to come by. Buying it on credit will just lead to it costing much more in the long run with the interest that is added on and often costs more each month than you would actually need to have saved.

Start saving your money today, even if you are in debt. There are some that you can hold off for now but definitely start putting money aside for your retirement, emergencies and any luxuries that you really want. You will soon find that you are living a less stressed life knowing your finances are almost in order.