Find us on Google+ My Sensible Cent: May 2013

Friday, May 31, 2013

Benefits of FHA 203k Mortgage Program

The FHA 203k loan is the vital government sponsored program for the refurbishing and rehabilitation of single-family properties. Essentially, it's just but a glorified home enhancement loan. The 203K mortgage is a remarkable tool for community revitalization.
Where can you apply the FHA 203k loan?
You may use FHA 203k rehab mortgage to purchase homes (including the land it stands on) for residential purposes and renovate all with a single loan. You may also use FHA 203k loan to buy an eligible property on a different site, convey it onto your new mortgaged property, and repair it. Other FHA 203k loan qualifying properties can be sourced through REO (properties owned by banks), short sale properties by the MLS and eligible homes from the HUD register.

However, the FHA 203K loan is not only meant for purchasing a home. If you are an eligible homeowner, you can effectively use this program to refurbish your primary residence. Once more, it is in essence a construction loan for upgrading existing homes.
How beneficial is FHA 203k rehab loan?
Nearly all regular mortgage programs only offer you "permanent" financing which implies that the financier will not fund the purchase of the property unless it is ready to be funded as-is. In case that property needs to be improved or repaired, several financiers will require that you do this prior to the financing deal with the lending institution. You can do the repairs from your pocket before purchasing the property; however, with the FHA 203k mortgage program you don't need to.
When you are applying for an FHA 203k loan, the property valuation will be based on the post-repair value and comprises an escrow account to repair the property to the lenders' preferred condition.
Now, considering the many REO homes in the market requiring repair, it is clear that "regular" FHA mortgage would pose a problem if it were the only mortgage you would access for REO and rehab properties.
FHA 203ks are safe and easier to manage when compared to the other forms of financing; moreover, their lenders are usually protected.
Since FHA 203k mortgage funds both the rehab and purchase costs in a single mortgage loan, it is nowadays one of the most popular mortgage options. In addition, the eligibility standards are quite similar to those in the FHA loan guidelines -making financing through an FHA 203K rehab mortgage very attractive.

Steve Siebold's "21 Ways Rich People Think Differently"

Browsing the web, I came a cross an article worth sharing and I'm not going to disappoint. So here we go........

World’s richest woman Gina Rinehart is enduring a media firestorm over an article in which she takes the “jealous” middle class to task for “drinking, or smoking and socializing” rather than working to 
earn their own fortune.

What if she has a point?

Steve Siebold, author of “How Rich People Think,” spent nearly three decades interviewing 
millionaires around the world to find out what separates them from everyone else. It had little to do with money itself, he told Business Insider. It was about their mentality.

“[The middle class] tells people to be happy with what they have,” he said. “And on the whole, most people are steeped in fear when it comes to money.”

1. Average people think MONEY is the root of all evil. Rich people believe POVERTY is the root of all evil -“The average person has been brainwashed to believe rich people are lucky or dishonest,” Siebold writes. That’s why there’s a certain shame that comes along with “getting rich” in lower-income communities. “The world class knows that while having money doesn’t guarantee happiness, it does make your life easier and more enjoyable.”

2. Average people think selfishness is a vice. Rich people think selfishness is a virtue- “The rich 
go out there and try to make themselves happy. They don’t try to pretend to save the world,” Siebold told Business Insider. The problem is that middle class people see that as a negative––and it’s keeping them poor, he writes. “If you’re not taking care of you, you’re not in a position to help anyone else. You can’t give what you don’t have.”

3. Average people have a lottery mentality. Rich people have an action mentality- “While the masses are waiting to pick the right numbers and praying for prosperity, the great ones are solving problems,” Siebold writes. “The hero [middle class people] are waiting for may be God, government, their boss or their spouse. It’s the average person’s level of thinking that breeds this approach to life and living while the clock keeps ticking away.”

4. Average people think the road to riches is paved with formal education. Rich people believe in acquiring specific knowledge- “Many world-class performers have little formal education, and have amassed their wealth through the acquisition and subsequent sale of specific knowledge,” he writes. “Meanwhile, the masses are convinced that master’s degrees and doctorates are the way to wealth, mostly because they are trapped in the linear line of thought that holds them back from higher levels of consciousness…The wealthy aren’t interested in the means, only the end.”

5. Average people long for the good old days. Rich people dream of the future- “Self-made millionaires get rich because they’re willing to bet on themselves and project their dreams, goals and ideas into an unknown future,” Siebold writes. “People who believe their best days are behind them rarely get rich, and often struggle with unhappiness and depression.”

6. Average people see money through the eyes of emotion. Rich people think about money logically- “An ordinarily smart, well-educated and otherwise successful person can be instantly transformed into a fear-based, scarcity driven thinker whose greatest financial aspiration is to retire comfortably,” he writes. “The world class sees money for what it is and what it’s not, through the eyes of logic. The great ones know money is a critical tool that presents options and opportunities.”

7. Average people earn money doing things they don’t love. Rich people follow their passion“To the average person, it looks like the rich are working all the time,” Siebold says. “But one of the smartest strategies of the world class is doing what they love and finding a way to get paid for it.” On the other hand, middle class take jobs they don’t enjoy “because they need the money and they’ve been trained in school and conditioned by society to live in a linear thinking world that equates earning money with physical or mental effort.”

8. Average people set low expectations so they’re never disappointed. Rich people are up for the challenge- “Psychologists and other mental health experts often advise people to set low expectations for their life to ensure they are not disappointed,” Siebold writes. “No one would ever strike it rich and live their dreams without huge expectations.”

9. Average people believe you have to DO something to get rich. Rich people believe you have to BE something to get rich- “That’s why people like Donald Trump go from millionaire to nine billion dollars in debt and come back richer than ever,” he writes. “While the masses are fixated on the doing and the immediate results of their actions, the great ones are learning and growing from every experience, whether it’s a success or a failure, knowing their true reward is becoming a human success machine that eventually produces outstanding results.”

10. Average people believe you need money to make money. Rich people use other people’s money-Linear thought might tell people to make money in order to earn more, but Siebold says the rich aren’t afraid to fund their future from other people’s pockets. “Rich people know not being solvent enough to personally afford something is not relevant. The real question is, ‘Is this worth buying, investing in, or pursuing?’” he writes.

11. Average people believe the markets are driven by logic and strategy. Rich people know they’re driven by emotion and greed- Investing successfully in the stock market isn’t just about a fancy math formula. “The rich know that the primary emotions that drive financial markets are fear and greed, and they factor this into all trades and trends they observe,” Siebold writes. “This knowledge of human nature and its overlapping impact on trading give them strategic advantage in building greater wealth through leverage.”

12. Average people live beyond their means. Rich people live below theirs- “Here’s how to live below your means and tap into the secret wealthy people have used for centuries: Get rich so you can afford to,” he writes. “The rich live below their means, not because they’re so savvy, but because they make so much money that they can afford to live like royalty while still having a king’s ransom socked away for the future.”

13. Average people teach their children how to survive. Rich people teach their kids to get rich. Rich parents teach their kids from an early age about the world of “haves” and “have-nots,” Siebold says. Even he admits many people have argued that he’s supporting the idea of elitism.

He disagrees. “[People] say parents are teaching their kids to look down on the masses because they’re poor. This isn’t true,” he writes. “What they’re teaching their kids is to see the world through the eyes of objective reality––the way society really is.” If children understand wealth early on, they’ll be more likely to strive for it later in life.

14. Average people let money stress them out. Rich people find peace of mind in wealth- The reason wealthy people earn more wealth is that they’re not afraid to admit that money can solve most problems, Siebold says. “[The middle class] sees money as a never-ending necessary evil that must be endured as part of life. The world class sees money as the great liberator, and with enough of it, they are able to purchase financial peace of mind.”

15. Average people would rather be entertained than educated. Rich people would rather be educated than entertained- While the rich don’t put much stock in furthering wealth through formal education, they appreciate the power of learning long after college is over, Siebold says. “Walk into a wealthy person’s home and one of the first things you’ll see is an extensive library of books they’ve used to educate themselves on how to become more successful,” he writes. “The middle class reads novels, tabloids and entertainment magazines.”

16. Average people think rich people are snobs. Rich people just want to surround themselves with like-minded people-The negative money mentality poisoning the middle class is what keeps the rich hanging out with the rich, he says. “[Rich people] can’t afford the messages of doom and gloom,” he writes. “This is often misinterpreted by the masses as snobbery. Labeling the world class as snobs is another way the middle class finds to feel better bout themselves and their chosen path of mediocrity.”

17. Average people focus on saving. Rich people focus on earning- Siebold theorizes that the wealthy focus on what they’ll gain by taking risks, rather than how to save what they have. “The masses are so focused on clipping coupons and living frugally they miss major opportunities,” he writes. “Even in the midst of a cash flow crisis, the rich reject the nickle and dime thinking of the masses. They are the masters of focusing their mental energy where it belongs: on the big money.”

18. Average people play it safe with money. Rich people know when to take risks- “Leverage is the watchword of the rich,” Siebold writes. “Every investor loses money on occasion, but the world class knows no matter what happens, they will aways be able to earn more.”

19. Average people love to be comfortable. Rich people find comfort in uncertainty- For the most part, it takes guts to take the risks necessary to make it as a millionaire––a challenge most middle class thinkers aren’t comfortable living with. “Physical, psychological, and emotional comfort is the primary goal of the middle class mindset,” Siebold writes. World class thinkers learn early on that becoming a millionaire isn’t easy and the need for comfort can be devastating. They learn to be comfortable while operating in a state of ongoing uncertainty.”

20. Average people never make the connection between money and health. Rich people know money can save your life.
While the middle class squabbles over the virtues of Obamacare and their company’s health plan, the super wealthy are enrolled in a super elite “boutique medical care” association, Siebold says. “They pay a substantial yearly membership fee that guarantees them 24-hour access to a private physician who only serves a small group of members,” he writes. “Some wealthy neighborhoods have implemented this strategy and even require the physician to live in the neighborhood.”

21. Average people believe they must choose between a great family and being rich. Rich people know you can have it all- The idea that wealth must come at the expense of family time is nothing but a “cop-out”, Siebold says. “The masses have been brainwashed to believe it’s an either/or equation,” he writes. “The rich know you can have anything you want if you approach the challenge with a mindset rooted in love and abundance.”

From Steve Siebold, author of “How Rich People Think.”

Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Advice I Wish Someone Had Given Me for My First Job

First jobs are intimidating; in hindsight I realise it took me a long time to be able to get into the flow of work and begin to work well.

Accept your newbie status and the work that comes with it
Most people do not realise there is a transition between work and school, you cross an invisible line and suddenly it is a whole new ball game. The rules have changed. First do what is asked of you. Go pick up dry cleaning, buy milk, cleaning the floor, whatever mundane tasks that you are asked to do. 

Slowly you will get to do more work. Just get it done (no matter what.)

Therefore, you need to revel in working hard no matter what the job is. You might be smart and clever, but a solid work ethic is the main thing that'll separate you from all the other viable candidates.

Stay organized and never miss a deadline

Your new career is not like school or any other job you've ever had. What worked before will not work now.  Being on time, getting your work done and keeping it all together is incredibly important at a new job so you do not draw undue attention to yourself. You can worry about standing out later. At first you just need to get your work done as efficiently as possible. It might seem like a minor thing, but showing you can reliably get things done goes a long way.

Pay attention to the company culture
Every company is different and fitting in is increasingly important especially with the stiff competition in the job market. While you don't need to go out of your way to change your personality for an employer you need to fit in as quickly as possible.

One of the best things about a new job is the incredible learning experience it provides
When you join your new job, get to know them, treat them with respect, watch and learn. The goal is make a good impression with various people around the company, and learn as much as you can. Try to be respectful, silent and get your work done the best you can. Careful with this though, I heard once in many companies co-workers, are so afraid they would loose their jobs they perpetually give the wrong instructions. If you know someone on the outside that can guide you reach out to them.

Watch for Burnout 
It's remarkably easy to get caught up in moving your career forward when you're first starting out. Recognize when you're overworked, give yourself breaks throughout the day and if you are unwell take sick days.

It's a fine balance between maintaining a consistent work ethic, being reliable, and still giving yourself the time off you need to survive. Your first job is not only about showing that you can get the job done, build a good network that will keep you going. This likely won't be your last job, and the more you can take away from it the better.

courtesy of Career point kenya

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

5 Billionares Who Were Once Fired From Their Jobs Before they Became Filthy Rich

Most of us live with the constant fear that we might get fired. “Might this be the day when the boss decides I have become irrelevant? Well, you know how that goes.

It’s comforting to know that some of the most successful people in the world have also been let go.

Here is a list of most successful people in the world who were once fired from their job.

1.Walt Disney.
In 1919, Walt Disney was fired from the Kansas City Star. According to his editor, he "lacked 
imagination and had no good ideas."

Don’t you find that funny considering that Walt Disney moved on to become animator, film producer, director, screenwriter, voice actor, entrepreneur, entertainer, international icon,[3] and philanthropist, well known for his influence in the field of entertainment? 

He co-founded the Walt Disney Productions, which later became one of the best-known motion picture producers in the world.


When Madonna dropped out of college and moved to New York to find fame, she had a rough start. Strapped for cash, she took a job at Dunkin' Donuts in Times Square. She didn't even last a day. After squirting jelly filling all over a customer, her managers gave her the boot.

The Material Girl went through several fast food and waitressing jobs before she was introduced to the city's punk rock music scene in 1979.
These low-paying gigs were necessary at first, but Madonna knew she was meant to be a star.

3.Oprah Winfrey.
Evening news reporter Oprah Winfrey couldn't help but get emotionally invested in her stories. The producer of Baltimore's WJZ-TV got fed up and pulled her off the air. As a consolation, he offered her a role on a daytime TV show.

Winfrey was initially heartbroken. At the time, daytime TV was a huge step down from the evening news. Her sadness quickly faded as the show, People Are Talking, became a hit.
That success help Oprah find her true calling as a talk show host.

4.Elvis Presley.
Elvis may be the king of rock 'n' roll but he hit some major setbacks on his way to the top. After one performance at Nashville's Grand Ole Opry, the concert hall's manager told the singer he was better off returning to Memphis and his old career, driving trucks.

Luckily for modern music, he didn't. Presley continued to book shows in the area and eventually landed a spot on a tour with Hank Snow, the then biggest star in country music.

5. JK Rowling 
She worked as a secretary for the London office of Amnesty International, but she dreamed of being a writer. She secretly wrote stories on her work computer and daydreamed about a teenage wizard named Harry Potter. Her employers finally got fed up and gave her the boot. Her severance check helped support her over the next few years, when she finally decided to focus on writing.

Today, she's the multi-billionaire author of one of the most successful book series of all time.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

iWriter for Freelance Writers Review

If you are a freelancer then you must be aware of The relatively new site has taken over freelance writing by a storm. To describe iwriter as an article writer’s paradise is an understatement. If you have established writing skills or is new to the freelance writing world then iwriter is the best place for you.

I may go on and on enticing you on the importance of iwriter, but again, not everybody succeeds with iwriter. As writer and requester with, I am writing this review outlining my experience with iwrtier. or simply iWriter is a website for professional freelance writers and article requesters, which reveals itself as one of the best online.
What makes iWriter Unique?
 Iwriter works a bit different from other freelance sites. For instance, it is only at that you can sign up and immediately start writing, without submitting a sample article or undergoing any skill test – You get the chance to show the requesters what you got to offer. From the job board, you are free to choose a job in a category you like and from any requester, provided you meet the minimum rating for the job category. Your success in iWriter is highly dependent on your ability. Upon submission of your finished work, the requester is given the opportunity to rate your work depending on how you have satisfied his/her needs. Therefore, be keen on the quality of articles you submit for they will affect your rating and dictate the writing level you attain and how much you take home per article.
How does iWriter ratings work?
It doesn’t matter what your past freelancing experience is, at iwriter, you build your reputation anew. The requester rates your work on a scale of 1 to 5 depending on how satisfied they are, their mood and article quality. You may not have absolute control over the requester’s mood; however, the quality of work and requester satisfaction is up to you. High quality articles addressing all the requester’s needs will definitely earn you a 5 star. Irrelevant, poorly written articles will absolutely give you a rating of 1.0.
When you sign up for, you have a star rating of 1.0 and are grouped as standard writer. As you write more articles, your rating will increase or reduce depending on the quality articles you write - Your success is dictated by your ability. To proceed to the next level, Premium writer, you must have written at least 30 articles and attained an average rating of 4.0 and above. This will leave experienced writers scratching their heads. However, this is a quality control by It takes time and determination to rise through the ranks. Fortunately, you can jump straight to an Elite writer provided you have attained a mean rating of at least 4.6 after 30 ratings. It sounds pretty easy. Doesn’t it? Wait until you try it out.
iWriter Earnings
For writers, your earning per article is dependent on your rank (standard, premium or elite writer); number of words needed in that particular article; and to some extent, the requester’s generosity like giving a tip. The standard writing pay per article is as listed below:
§  150 words – $1.01
§  300 words – $1.62
§  500 words – $2.24
§  700 words – $4.05
§  1000 words – $6.07
Premium writers
§  150 words – $1.62
§  300 words -  $3.24
§  500 words – $4.05
§  700 words – $5.27
§  1000 words – $8.10
§  150 words – $3.50
§  300 words – $5.67
§  500 words – $8.10
§  700 words – $10.13
§  1000 words – $14.99
Depending on your relationship with the requester, you can receive an assignment directly from him/her. The good thing about special request is that they pay well and gives a good rating since your relationship between you and the requester is good. For instance, I repeatedly get a 5 star rating from a requester for whom iWrite game reviews.
If you already are a freelancer with a copyscape subscription account, you may as well stop your subscription. Iwriter automatically runs copyscape on their site for free. This is good news to those who understand how copyscape works and its importance in the article writing world. For beginners, copyscape is a plagiarism checker capable of detecting article phrases copied from the web. Whenever this is detected, the software colours the affected phrases in yellow and inform you to look into them. Be caught 3 consecutive times and your account is deactivated.
Limitations of
Despite all the good news about iwriter, be sure to meet some challenges which will disadvantage you as a writer. Your rating and there your ascent in iwriter depends on the quality of articles you write but to some extent, the requester.  For example
Bias or cruel requesters: you may write a quality article based on your own understanding of the requester’s need. However, sometimes you get it wrong, may be because the requester didn’t comprehensively describe what article he/she needs or your fault in understanding. The result for such mistakes is your article being rejected with an annoying rating of 1.0, if the requester is that bad.
Remedy: You have the will to choose who to write for, therefore such requesters may top your list of the most feared clients on iwriter. Alternatively, it is alwayd good to use the “”contact requester” option provided by iwriter to get more highlights on the requester’s needs.
Short time for research: You should write a 150 and 400 word article within two hours, 500  word article attracts 3 hours writing time and 700 words and above attracts 5 hours. This may seem a lot of time, however, if the project is complicated and requires in-depth  research, you may not have the pleasure to do it. In case “unforeseen circumstances” like power failure, loss in internet connectivity; your project will delay and despite the effort put, you earn zero dollars.
Remedy: I love long articles (500 words and above) as they give me adequate time for research.
If you have the skill and passion for freelance writing then iwriter will the best place to try it out and earn some good cash. If you are a good writer you will have an easy time up the iwriter ladder. This is because many articles will be approved and you will keep rising through the ranks. If you are below average, iwriter will be a nightmare and you will easily quit due to many rejections and you will never get out of the standard ranking. Therefore, please do not start writing if you know for sure that your writing is below average.
You may forget this long iwriter review article, but remember these three points:
1.      Aim to be an elite writer.
2.      Aim for special request

For requesters, look forward to an in-depth review of iwriter for requesters and learn how you can get quality articles at an unbeatable price. In the meantime, you can sign up to iwriter and request for quality articles or sign up as an iwriter freelancer and start making those dollars.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Latest Business Ideas for Women Wishing to Make That extra cash

Online home based businesses are the latest business ideas for the mums who stay at home as housewives or those retired. These women, some in their 50s, make good money online through these home based jobs they do during their free time. It is as easy as having internet enabled computer and some knowledge on how to use it. Most of these jobs are freelance therefore you are the person to decides when to do it.
Now, how can you tap this extra money? The answer is just next.

Freelance writing: With the growth in number of websites, there is a high demand for content to fill these pages. All you need is experience in any field and good grammar and writing skills. You can sign up in these freelance writing sites, like iwriter, helium, etc; write and submit articles for some dollars.

Writing Blogs: How about expressing your feelings on topics of interest and making money out of it? All you have to do is create your own blog and share these ideas you got on fashion, food, politics and parenting tips. You can also sell items on their blogs.

Online stores: You can sign up with Amazon, eBay and Craigslist, just to mention a few, after which you can sell new or used products or become online dealers.

Secretarial and administration works: Very much suitable if you have some training in these fields. You can work as data entry personnel, secretary or administrator.

Writing E-books: If you have a passion and talent to write, you can write e-books on your preferred topic or area of study and sell this opinion or knowledge to the world.

If you are a woman at home, the internet is not just for entertainment and research, you can do some real good business with it.

Online Conveyancing: What You Need to Know?

Conveyancing is the lawful transfer of property title from one person or a legal entity to another. It is usually a process worth paying for. For instance, if you are buying a house, it is always import to ensure that the sellers have the legal rights to do so. It also offers quicker and smoother transaction during purchase or sale of a property.
Since you cannot evade this process, it is only advisable to look for ways of saving money and time as you go through this vital process.
If you intend to use conveyancing services you may consider doing it online. Online conveyancing services are both cost effect and fast. However, each transaction for a particular property can vary greatly - as the professionals search for title deeds and verify them.
The following are some key points you may need to know before doing this transaction online:

What's the Cost of Online Conveyancing?

The conveyancing cost varies just as the companies which offer them and the nature of the transaction. However, online they range from 199 pounds up to 1200 plus pounds. Lover fees are possible when dealing with larger firms with high transaction volumes. High costs do not usually translate to better services. So it is advisable to choose a company with proven reputation other than an expensive one.

How quick is online conveyancing?

Online conveyancing can be an excellent time saver. With outstanding team structures in place and incredible IT facility, most of the progressive law firms can complete your transaction within a very short time. Case management enables clients get regular updates on their transaction; by logging on they can check their progress. To get the best out of this new efficient approach, it would be meaningful to combine it with the assurance of you ability to verbally communicate with your solicitor.

Stages in Conveyancing

Whether you are doing these transactions online or at the company's physical address, there are three stages that conveyancing will have to follow:

1. Pre-exchange: At this stage, the original draft is considered to be negotiated by the involved parties. It includes details on the parties involved, costs, the seller's title deed and the amount of deposit to be paid. It is important to get a copy of the contract from your solicitor before making an agreement. When all these enquiries are through and both the parties are satisfied, an official mortgage offer is launched.

2. Exchange of contracts: With everybody satisfied, the contracts are signed and exchanged, and finally the buyer pays the deposit. This legally binds the two parties into a contract. The transfer documents are drawn up, transferring the title from the seller to the buyer and must be signed by both parties. Next, the mortgage documents are signed and then final enquiries are made to make sure there are no undisclosed mortgages or any other thing registered against the seller.

3. Completion: The property is handed over to the buyer and the seller has to move out the same day, if he hadn't. The payment must also be completed then the buyer receives the title deeds and a copy of the transfer documents. Extra costs like stump duty and land registry fee will need to be covered. Finally, the conveyancing solicitor carry out his due to of informing relevant authority of the transaction, paying stamp duty, registering the new ownership at the lands registry and sending the buyer a certificate of completion.

The domestic conveyancing market is price competitive, with a large number of conveyancing companies and solicitors offering similar services. It may also be tempting for one to try out 'conveyancing' for themselves but this may lead to unnecessary legal tussles.

Earning More or Saving: What's The Key to Financial Freedom

We all want to be financially stable.  We want to be debt free, live a pleasing lifestyle and never have to worry about our finances ever again. However, we have been advised not once that the key to true financial freedom effective saving. Is it?

While I’m not going to condemn the power of saving, I feel there’s little saving can help you out with your finances. For sure, you can only save what you have. All of us have several needs and while saving can be of help, unless you’re really taking home something serious, it won’t have as much impact on 
your financial live as you expect.

The key to financial security is to increase your income sources; not just your salary.

1.Ask for a pay raise

Asking your boss for a pay increase is especially effective if you have been at your job for a long period and you feel like you’re underpaid, especially if you have had more accomplishments than some of your colleagues and they are paid more. 
Of course, you don’t just walk to your boss and demand a pay rise “because you deserve it.” Instead,make your boss aware of your accomplishments as well as how your pay compares to that of your colleagues and why you deserve a pay rise.

2. Apply Your Entrepreneurial skills

Take a look around you to see if there are people you can help with that business skill you got and also survey to see if they will be willing to pay if you could help out. Once you have enough supporting data for your decision, start a small business as soon as you can. If all things go well, you might even be forced to quit your job to focus on your business.

3. Start a side job

Depending on your schedule and availability, you might want to consider taking a side job. Perhaps, there’s something you can do after work,  during the weekends and holidays to keep yourself busy and earn some extra cash? For example, those with the skills and passion for writing can sign up as a freelance writer.

4. Dispose off things you don’t need

Old electronics, phones, and other unused gadgets and furniture in your house may be useful to others. These gadgets are taking up space in your home. You can always sell old phones, electronics, and other things which me be useful to others.  Apart from freeing some space for newer gadgets, you will earn some cash which you can spend or save. 

Once you have increased your income you can always apply the money saving tips for low income earners to ensure that you maximize on your savings.

Buying Legitimate Turnkey Websites - How to Evade Scam

Purchasing a turnkey website can be an ideal short-cut to starting an online business. You do not have to pay a graphic designer or design the complex graphics yourself, content is generally built-in and with some few changes you will easily come up with a perfect and original website for your business. This can be very attractive alternative to studying website design and then using the design software to build your website from scratch.

However, it is sometimes a challenge identifying legit turnkey websites. To evade scam and ensure that you the best deal when buying turnkey websites, there are some key points to checkout:
1.    Check the reputation of the website claiming to sell legit Turnkey websites
2.    Does the seller limit the number of each website offered for sale?
3.    Is the domain name provided by the seller?
4.    Seller Support
5.    Is the seller providing hosting?
6.    Are the claims realistic?
Check the reputation of the website claiming to sell legit Turnkey Websites
To start with, make sure the site from which you intend to buy the turnkey website allows feedbacks and testimonials. Check what previous buyers say about them. It is usually expected that they will be very honest on what they purchased. Also check online reviews of the turnkey website.
Does the seller limit the number of each website offered for sale?
This is significant. If there are thousands of sites similar to yours out there, do not be cheated that yours will easily stand out.
Altering the content and graphics on your site will make it unique and help it stand out. However, there must be a limit to the number of each turnkey website, to make your work easier. When deciding on where to purchase your legit turnkey website, ensure the seller has a limit to the number of each site they offer for sale.

Some sites claim to sell legit turnkey websites; however, they offer for sale thousands of the same sites. This greatly reduces the chances of your site topping the search engines and of it getting a lot of visitors. If the provider has a limit to the sale of each website you should consider it better.
Is the domain name provided by the seller?
Are you supposed to choose your own domain or it comes with the website? At times the domain name provided by the seller is not suitable. In such cases, you will need to provide a personalized domain name. Acquiring a domain name is not that difficult, you only need to enquire from the domain name providers if they the name you want is available for sale. After buying the domain name your only task will be to redirect it.

Legit turnkey website sellers will provide the domain name together with the cost of the website and allow the buyer to choose it.
Are the claims realistic?
Site selling legit turnkey websites will never make claims which are unrealistic about the potential of the sites they are selling. Whether bought from a turnkey websites or started from scratch, sites usually make some good money with time. Therefore claims of making up to or over $10,000 per month initially are simply false.

Always steer clear of sellers making unrealistic claims about their products. A legitimate turnkey website seller recognizes that it takes some time for any site to build and succeed.
Seller Support
When setting up the new website, is there any support offered by the seller? This is usually in the form of online videos, pdfs, or support via email. Some type of support is necessary and most legit turnkey website providers will give this.

Is the seller providing hosting?
Websites are usually hosted in the servers of some hosting company who always charge for these services. A legit turnkey website provider, who provide hosting, usually charge reasonable fee for this service.
However, not all legit turnkey websites come with hosting. This sometimes to your advantage as it leaves gives the option to look for a better hosting deal elsewhere.
Consider all these points before splashing your money into purchasing a turnkey website.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Finding Legitimate Online Business Opportunities

The internet today is home to numerous scam as well as legitimate online business opportunities. So, if you are looking for legitimate online business opportunities, there are some tricks you can use to ascertain the legitimacy of the site.

How To Ascertain the Opportunity is Legitimate

When the deal look too good think twice. It is unrealistic that you can make a whopping $10,000 in your first two weeks or a month, in a business you have no prior experience in. Any site trying to woo you with such enormous earning is possibly a scam.
Search the website to see if it has any contacts like phone numbers, email address, and most importantly a physical address. Try sending a message to this email address expressing your interest in the business.
Search for the logo of the business from reputable bodies on the internet like, Alexa Ranking and Better Business Bureau. Click on this logo to get more information about the company.
Check if the site offers any guarantee or free trial for some period. Also check if they offer any training, as this is vital if you are new to internet marketing.
You may also sign up for their free newsletter to help you understand the company and also connect you to your referrer.

It is always to your own advantage to invest time on studying these opportunities before parting with your hard earned cash.

The Mega Difference Between Reality & Fantasies in Life After College

The world after college is a scary and an awkward place.  (The Government should have an adjustment bureau for campus leavers by the way). You leave college thinking you are an adult ready to start the career you’ve spent years preparing for. Honestly, this could not be further from the truth. You think freshman year was difficult? Well once you graduate college, you are back at the bottom of the talisman pole.

You are likely to go through a lot of career changes as you try to figure out the path you want to take in life. This is the time you gain experience and decide who you want to become. College was a 

bubble where you were only surrounded by people in your age bracket. The real world is filled with people of all ages with tons of more experience than you. You think what you learned in the classroom is going to get you further in life? No. The learning has just began.

There is no coasting through life after collegeSure you may have gotten an A in school, but that sh*t 

doesn’t fly in the real world. Your responsibilities are your own and your success is determined by your hard work. If you want to become lucrative, you need to exert every ounce of strength and determination you possess. You determine your future.

Dating in college was a temporary commitment revolving around partying and schoolwork. Dating in the post grad world tends to focus around long-term commitment. You realize that you are getting older and that each person you date comes with the question, “Can I see myself with this person for the long run?”

Learn what you can from each person you date so that you better know what qualities you want in your partner. There is no reason to stay in a relationship at this age if it is not completely fulfilling you. Interact with as many people as possible and learn what it is you truly desire.

“I used to think it was lame to live with your parents after college. Now, I see the true value of not paying rent and free laundry.”

There are no meal plans in the real world; you are responsible for feeding yourself. Your parents no longer support your basic needs. You need to learn how to be fiscally responsible, a huge task that college does not prepare you for. This is not the time to waste money on things you don’t need, this is the time to save.

Long gone are the days where you could party seven days a week, the rigor of your career prevents that. There are no more Rap Mondays, Tequila Tuesdays, Karaoke Wednesdays, Rock Thursdays, Members day on Friday, Neo-soul Saturdays and Reggae Sundays.

The emotional roller coaster you go through at this time can be gut wrenching. You happy one day and lonely and depressed the next. This is normal and should not deter you from accomplishing your goals. Your friends will all be on different career paths, earning different salaries. You cannot fall into the trap of comparing yourself to these people; jealously is a limit you place on yourself.

It takes a long period of adjustment to become acclimated to the functioning of the real world. It helps to remember that you are not alone and there are thousands upon thousands of people going through the same feeling and situation you are in. Everyone is just as confused as you are; everyone experiences the same highs and lows.

Long gone are the days where you could party seven days a week, the rigor of your career prevents that. There are no more Rap Mondays, Tequila Tuesdays, Karaoke Wednesdays, Rock Thursdays, Members day on Friday, Neo-soul Saturdays and Reggae Sundays. You are saving money for bus fare, so you don’t have to stand at the stage for long just waiting for “mat ya 50 bob” just because you don’t have that Kshs.10 to board a bus for Kshs. 60.

As you get older and more involved in your career, you finally realize all those college nights of staying up until 4 a.m. are not an option here. You’re in bed by 11, since skipping “class” is not an option. There’s no hitting the snooze button and saying I’ll get the notes from some chic in class. If you don’t go to work, you’re fired. There’s no doctor’s note or excuse you can pull. Your attendance in the real world is mandatory, not optional.

Your weekends that once were filled with day drinking and smoking are now replaced by running errands because you’re too busy during the week. Instead of focusing on what you’re going to wear to that party, you’re concerned about grocery shopping, cleaning and buying toiletries. For guys, that Novem-beard is a notion of the past since the real world demands you show up clean-shaven every day.

Life in college was basically a carefree ride, but now is the time to buckle down. Face it, we’re adults and we’re all in this together. Don’t be discouraged that college is over, but instead embrace the new lifestyle the post grad world has to offer and make the most out of it. Lean on your friends since you are all going through the challenges. It will be an adjustment at first but soon you will realize that your twenties can be the best time of your life. You have a whole new world to explore.

courtesy of Career Point Kenya

Thursday, May 23, 2013


My friend John was recently hospitalized having been involved in a terrible accident that claimed the lives of almost all the passengers onboard. John, a married man, was in critical condition which the doctors he could either die or survive. During this period, John underwent numerous operations and was put on expensive medication in an attempt to save his life. His wife, Mary, friends and other family members exploited all the available financial options still fell short of the one million that was needed to settle his hospital bills.
 During one of his visits to the hospital, John’s brother, James, learnt of a 1 acre piece of land owned by John in Ruiru. John instructed James to get the land license from his mother, sell it off and settle the bills. However, James passed by John’s home and met Mary with whom he shared what John had asked him to do. Mary was infuriated; she couldn’t believe John could keep her in the dark of the existence of that piece of land all that time.
The Story of John is just one among the many secrets men keep away from their wives; for one reason or another. Irrespective of his love for you, there are some secrets you might never know about him. One of these is the monthly package he takes home.
Why is a man’s salary his top secret?  
1.       Men don’t want women to budget with their money: Women are generally known to be spenders. Now, this is why men dread to disclose how much they earn to their ladies. They simply do not want you to budget with his money. For instance, the man foots all the bills but the lady wants a new carpet, the house modernized, kitchen utensils added, a new fridge bought and children taken to a more expensive school. It becomes a serious conflict if the man says he doesn’t have the money and the wife knows how much he takes home every month. Questions like, who is he giving the money? Where is he taking the money?  Will arise. With all fairness, some ladies will want you to spend your earnings to the last cent and still be able take care of emergencies when they occur. So, to be on the safe side, men fail to disclose their full salary as a risk management strategy.
2.        Lack of trust: Whether you are the mother of his children, men do not trust a woman’s life. On the other hand, men trust their mothers more than anyone else. It’s common to find a man consulting his mother in making some major decisions. For example, some will buy property and leave it in the custody of his mother. Others leave a will of all his properties going to his children, mother or even brothers; other than the wife.
3.       Men don’t want their women to find out when they are broke: All men have an ego to protect. Financial insecurity lowers their ego whereas financial security boosts their ego. A man’s traditional role is to take care of his woman. He is the head and provider of his family. He feels worthy when he is able to fully provide for his family. When a man is broke, he doesn’t want his wife to know. He feels insecure and fears that the love of his life may leave him…. May be go out with another man for financial support.
4.       Unrealistic women: Men dread women who make unrealistic demands. They want women who are reasonable and understanding to the needs of the family. Some ladies are extravagant, spenders and inflexible. They push their men to the limit, always wanting this and that. For example, ask for designer bags, vacation trip, wardrobe change, high class school for the kids, or a new car. Others will even ask the man to dispose off some of his investment property so as to take care of her demands of life.
5.       To maintain the status quo to his friends and/or the society: Most men do not want their women to know how they spend their cash. A man may be spending his money on alcohol, his family members or even a “mpango wa kando.” This is the reason why some men don’t meet all their family bills.
In any relationship, there are secrets. However, they can work for or against the person keeping them especially when the other party finds out. (S)He may feel that you do not trust her/him despite beign with you all through. But at the end of it all, you can choose how you want to live and how much you can disclose to your partner.

Shopping for health insurance? 5 tips on how to get it right.

Shopping for health insurance is all about comparing the benefits of the various cover plans available vis-à-vis their cost and then selecting a plan which best suits your needs and budget. The variations in health insurance plans are quite puzzling and, therefore, few individuals bother to understand or even go through the terms of contract till they run into trouble.  Moreover, the vast variations between states only add to the complexity of this matter.  For instance, some states authorize medical underwriting, thereby giving your insurer permission to raise your premium or even totally reject you from a policy based on your heath history. Those which don't permit underwriting are no better as the premiums will usually be higher overall.

In deciding which plan is best for you, you will need a clear understanding of how your personal medical spending patterns relate to the fine prints of the different medical plans you qualify. Whatever plan you choose, if you have been previously entitled to a medical cover by your employer, prepare for sticker shock.
To get you through this mind boggling process, below are 5 tips on how to go about it:
1.    Understand the different alternatives available
If you were recently laid off or left your job, COBRA is the simplest option as it let you stay on your employer's medical plan. However, you will need to pay the full cost, therefore may not utterly be the cheapest option. That is because, more than often, employers subsidize their employees' premiums letting them only pay a fraction f the full bill. If you are in good health and rarely need to see the doctor, you may find a low cost high-deductable medical plan with a lesser amount of coverage.
Conversely, if you have issues with your health, COBRA may be superior deal overall. The major advantage of the COBRA plan is that you qualify for it irrespective of your pre-existing condition.
In deciding the best plan, you need to consider what you need, its cost, and how it weighs against other option. Paying highly for a coverage you are not going to use is like, as Martin Rosen (Heath Advocate co-founder) put it, "throwing your money down the fireplace."  If you are between jobs, and therefore having some financial constraints, you better go for the state-run programs that often discounted. For example, the state of New York provides cheaper health insurance cover for low income groups courtesy of its "Healthy New York" program.
2.    Shop Around
Due to the complexity of insurance, the cost implication of being in a wrong plan may be great. Therefore, it is necessary to shop around and ensure you understand what you are buying before signing that contract.  Here, the online heath insurance brokerages will give you a starting point. They automatically give you the quote of whatever plan you opt for. Just enter your information and get the quote.
Alternatively, you can hire a health insurance broker to guide you through. The brokers are listed in the National-Health-Underwriters, NAHU's database. However, not all brokers are qualified therefore getting a referral from a family member or a friend will be advisable.
Either way, you will need to get different quotes for the different plans and then compare the details and monthly premium costs.
courtesy of

3.    Affiliation with Groups
All factors constant, group insurance will be cheaper than getting a health insurance yourself. When you are a staff member, your company automatically qualifies for group rates. When you are going it solo, one good way to go would be to create or find a group. Alumni associations, trade groups and other organizations sometimes offer association insurance to their members. Nonetheless, you will still need to compare the coverage against the rates for a good choice as association insurance may not always be the cheapest option.
4.      Consider Tax Deductions
Self employed persons can always deduct their insurance premiums prior to taxation. The premiums are "above-the-line" deduction which will reduce your gross income irrespective of whether or not you itemize them. On the other hand, medical expenses are a schedule-A deduction that can only be taken when itemized and has exceeded 7.5 percent of your gross income. In the end, the net cost of every dollar you spend on your health insurance cover will generally be less that spent on medical care.
5.      Calculate the long-run cost of different plans
Cheaper insurance plan may not necessarily prove to be cheaper in the long-run. The long-term cost will depend on the cover exclusions, your heath spending, your in-network as well as out-of-network usage and several other factors. Consider your entire family's health spending and patterns - the doctors you visit, your past medical services as well as a need to travel. You may find that you're not covered by some plan.
Having a fully understood your heath issues, you may also want to consider the financial ones. Even though premiums are important, they are accompanied by some extra fees like co-insurance for seeing the doctor. Check for exclusions and benefit limits of your intended plan. A full understanding of your health issues and financial limits of the plan will help you know whether that particular cover will be cheaper or expensive in the long run.

What's Your Worth? 3 Factors That Dictates What You Earn

Once and for all, let’s handle this issue of salaries. What determines the salary you get? Why are some professions poorly paying? And lastly, what can you do to perk up your pay?

As a fact job pay for any particular job isn't constant. Several factors control what you earn. These factors range from:

1. Demand and Supply: In Kenya, for instance, there is a tendency of students to go for popular courses regardless of whether or not one is gifted. That’s why CPA, MBA's, Bcom, IT and Law courses are favourites among learners in Kenya. Many register for the course without any idea of where they want to be or whom they want to become after graduation. With many graduates graduating with these courses, the market is flooded and employers are spoilt for choice.
That explains why your average bank teller is a graduate in addition to having other professional qualifications. That’s why an employer in a far remote area is confident of getting an accountant at a pay of Ksh. 15K.We simply have tens of thousands of skilled professionals chasing very few jobs. Time has come for young people to evaluate their interest in a particular career and not just go with the most popular.

2. Special Skills: Skills in small supply may merit a bargain for premium pay. If you’re a lawyer competent in a given area where there is low competition, e.g. international law, then you call the shorts when negotiating for salary. Sometime back, there was a serious shortage of telecommunication engineers in Kenya that Safaricom always had an advertisement inviting applicants from Kenyans in the Diaspora and having a Telecommunication engineering background. Such engineers ended up getting very good pay some to extent of Ksh. 600k net.

2. Salary Compression: Concerns that a revolt among current employees may ensue from paying you a higher salary can cause a company to stick strictly to a certain salary. If the highest paid in that department takes home a certain figure and you are joining at a grade lower, then the assumption is that however good you are the company will stick to their salary structure.

3. Large Versus Small Companies. Although large companies normally pay more, smaller companies without a formal salary structures are easier to bargain with than corporate titans. With smaller firms it easier for the bosses to recognize your effort and hard work and remunerate you accordingly, unlike the big companies where you are just part of the system. Assume you work for Apple customer care. There is a set salary bracket for that department and no matter how smart you are or how best you deliver chances are you’re probably going to remain within the salary scale. But even at giant companies where pay scales are cast on stone, your potential boss may have the liberty to cut you a better deal.

What are your thoughts?