Four smart places to invest your money

The financial market and the economy are now entering a new phase, full of new risks and opportunities for investors. It is evident enough that unemployment levels are declining and there is hope that inflation will start to pick up. As it is with economic transitions, this moment of change is creating new opportunities in the financial markets: the landscape is shifting and investors need to come up with smart ways to invest their money. Where should you invest your money? Here are the four areas you may consider:

Inflation-Protected Bonds (I-Bonds)

Inflation denies you the opportunity to reap from your investment in traditional fixed-income securities. This is because the money you earn through interest is not worth as it was during the initial investment. This phenomenon has prompted some financial institutions to come up with products which shield your investment from inflation. Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS) are one way to go about this. TIPS come at fixed interest rates but the principal may fluctuate. You can also purchase I-bonds which are some form of savings bonds whose interest rates fluctuate while the principal remains constant.


As the global economy recovers from the recession, the fear of deflation has been replaced with concerns about possible inflation. For some time now, the price of commodities such as oil, gold, land packages and agricultural products have been on an upsurge. Most businesses have not been able to pass down the high costs down to the consumer but there is a likelihood that all this will change. While some experts rule out the possibility of inflation being a major problem, you should not throw caution to the wind. Inflation cannot be ignored. Real assets such as commodities could provide protection for your investments in an inflationary environment. However, rather than trying to invest in the next ‘hot’ commodity, tap into an extended exchange-traded fund or a mutual fund and invest in a range of different commodities.

Municipal bonds

The municipal bond market is attracting more investors by the day. Most issuers are able to repay their obligations without any problem and the returns are good; a 10-year bond may yield about 4 % interest. The secret to success is simple: learn to protect yourself from weak issues.

Australian Dollars

Steve Persky, managing partner of the Dalton Investments was quoted saying, ‘One way to hedge it is with the Australian dollar.’ True enough, the Australian economy was unscathed by the global recession. It did not fall victim to the credit pressure, which faced much of Europe and the USA. So, if you want to invest, you now know where to put your money.

As is evident, there are many places in which you can invest your money. Keep in mind to involve a financial advisor to guide you. Share this content with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media platforms.

How to Save Money on Energy Bills this summer

In this summer, you can cut your energy bills almost in half without having to sit home in the dark or purchasing extra gadgets. You may already have heavy curtains on the window to keep heat out, ceiling fans, and you may have sealed all cracks to ensure that warm air stay outside but this will not be enough to cut down the energy bills. Below are some extra low-cost things you can do to cut energy bills during this summer.

Unplug Electronics which are not in Use.

You might be wasting energy without realizing it mostly by leaving electronics and other appliances plugged in when not in use. Markedly, there are some appliances which can drain power even when they are turned off. Any device with a light or clock will consume power 24 hours a day even when it is turned off. A case example is leaving a charger plugged in when it is not charging your phone. However, this does not mean that you have to unplug all your electronics and electrical appliances whenever they are not in use. Instead, you should plug them in surge protectors or wall switches, and upon turning the main switch off, there will be no power drain.

Program the Thermostat

If you have a thermostat, you should consider programming it to match your needs. This way you will realize the maximum benefits of having a thermostat this summer. A programmable thermostat will save you up to 10 percent of your energy bills every year. If you don’t know how to program it, you can seek the services of a technician who will set it according to your specifications.

Load up your Washing Machine

Regardless of whether your washing machine is full, you will use the same amount of energy and power As such, it is advisable to ensure that you always do full loads which will save you the extra energy you would have used if you did two half loads. Also, you can do laundry using cold water which will save you the heating costs. You can also skip the dry cycle on the washing machine and instead hang them out in a solar clothes dryer.

Avoid Frigid Air-Conditioner Temperatures

Considering the hot temperatures during this summer, you will be tempted the set the air conditioner to very low temperatures. However, this can be very expensive considering that the temperatures will still rise upon switching off the air conditioner. You should set your air conditioner reasonably or look for other ways to cool the body off such as taking a cold shower.

Go Wireless

It always pays when you get away from 2D electronics for a while. You can ditch your Facebook friends for a while and instead socialize with friends from the real world. Organizing a pool party, or a game night will distract you from using energy-consuming gadgets by giving you the same amount of entertainment.

How To Start A Business At Home With Little Or No Cost

Starting a business at home is something that people everywhere are trying to find out about every day. The answer for starting your own business for free or for a low price is very easy. You need to select the perfect type of online business to start. Now, this does not mean that you should choose a business that you do not like. Instead, you have to select one that is perfect for you, but it needs to be a certain type of business.

There are some ideas for a business that can’t be done for free or for a low cost and those are the ideas you must avoid, like creating your product and setting up your own business. What you should do rather is to select a business on the web that is already set up for you and all you must do to begin is to get signed up for free or for a low price. Below are the particular types of businesses you can start from home that are free or that always have a low cost to get started with.

  1. Affiliate programs – There are a lot of affiliate programs on the internet that you can start your own business with. This is a business idea that is free to get a business going with because all you have to do is select the program you will promote and then sign up for their program with your contact information. They will send you an email that will have everything you need to start making money on the web right away.
  2. Niche business opportunities – You can find business opportunities in any niche you can imagine and also in network marketing if you like working with a team. The key is to look carefully at each opportunity that catches your eye and check out the cost of getting started. Some of the opportunities will be free, but some you can begin a business with for a very low cost, which will be affordable for any person, even people on a budget.

Now that you understand the best solution to use for how to start a business at home for little or no cost; all that is left for you to do is to locate the perfect business idea for you and get it started. You are the only one that can accomplish this goal, and the sooner you get started the sooner you will notice a big and positive change in your life.

7 Biggest Success Killers and How to Overcome Them


Having a schedule of how you will carry out all your activities could help stop postponing things. Proper time management is one of the key attributes of successful people. All the important activities should be accounted for in your daily plan and you should stick to it.

Impulse decision-making and settling for the average

Not making informed decisions leads to settling for what you don’t want. It is important to make wise decisions on all matters and only settle for what you want. You should be able to identify when you need help.

Always giving excuses

If you tried to achieve a goal, but failed, you should not relax and start filling your head with excuses why you could not succeed. You need to account for all your actions. Looking deep into the reason you failed could help avoid a replica of the same in the future.

Fear of both success and failure

Fear of failure is more common and people are afraid of investing their time, resources and energy in achieving their goals. No successful person lived their dream by sitting back and avoiding taking risks. All you need is a careful assessment of the risk factors and wise judgment

Most people fear the transition that could come about if they became successful. The transition could affect your entire social life; including changing your friends, the fear of being lonely and standing out from the rest. Success is for confident people who are determined to achieve their dreams no matter what.

Doubting your ability to succeed

Successful people keep up the spirit of positivism, in the way they think and talk. You should work on your weakness and focus on more positive thoughts; this will, in turn, improve your self-esteem and will increase your chances of success.

Your past

All the hurt, pain and disappointments you have had in the past could be a hindrance to your success. Since it is not easy to deal with our past failures, at some point you need therapy sessions with a counselor to help you overcome them.

Paying attention to the bad influence

It is important to listen to other people’s opinions, but never let them make you give up on your dream. On your journey towards success, many people will disappoint you and even mock you. It is important to remain determined in achieving your goal.

Successful people never stop seeking knowledge. You must be open to learn and grow. For you to meet your goals, you need discipline and consistency in the way you do things.

You Can Achieve Success

Nothing is achieved by simply wondering if you are going to be great. Wonder without any plan of action is pointless. The reality is that you have to make a plan and set it in motion to achieve goals.

You are valuable to the world. You have something relevant to contribute. The good news is that you don’t have to wait a long time before you start the journey of reaching for success. When you have a desire to achieve something, you already have made a big step toward progress and success.

You can start with your story. The truth is that we all have a story. You have something unique to say, do, or sell that is worthy of sharing with others. Perhaps others can learn from your failures or frustrations. Perhaps you have a new innovation.

Jot down your ideas. Conduct research and even do interviews. This information will lead you to more success. You may include all of these things in a book, or you may decide to place the information on a website. Or perhaps you will create a program or some type of product to sell.

When you are just beginning, you must realize you will not be on Broadway or on the front cover of some popular magazine. But you will get noticed by some people who will be interested in what you have to offer. That is where it all starts. One success at a time will lead to your overall success in the future.

Note that you cannot build your future simply on hope, though you must maintain a positive outlook on the journey toward achieving your desired success. Social media is what will get you noticed and your business known. Therefore, it is important for you to be on social media promoting your business, ideas, products and services. Facebook and Twitter are great to start with. Try other social media sites you like as well.

Now that you realize you must create a plan, now that you realize you are valuable to the world, now that realize you have something important to say, and now that you realize social media can help you, keep on reaching for your goals.

Buying A Home In Spring

Buying a good home is everyone’s dream and if you have been dreaming of buying your favorite, spring season is the best time for you. For this reason, successfully buying a home in spring centers on one thing – planning.

Hire a local real estate agent

If you’re going to beat other buyers and nab the home of your dreams, you will need to seek help from someone who understands the local terrain well. A local real estate agent will help with that. They will know who is selling and who plans to list their home even before the sign is up on their front yard. An agent will therefore give you serious headway. They will also tip you on prices and the real estate trend in the area.

Know what you want

To avoid getting outbid, know what kind of property you want. Only show interest in houses that suit your needs and concentrate on them. If you get a house that you really like, jump on it and make an offer. While you’re at it, maintain a good rapport with the seller. Remember that even first impressions count highly for home sellers.

Get your financing ready

One of the strongest determinants in closing a home purchase deal is affording it. If you don’t have your financing ready, sellers might not take you seriously. Talk to a lender and find out what you can afford. Your goal should be pre-approval even before you start prospecting. If you make a bid and inform your seller that you are pre-approved for a mortgage, they will rank you higher up their ‘buyer list’.

Be prepared for the sale when your bid gets accepted

Lastly, be prepared to buy the house. Don’t concentrate too much on finding your dream home that you forget the conveyancing process. Shop around for a home inspector and have them on standby. Do the same for a conveyancer or lawyer. If you start scrambling around last minute, you will be giving other well-prepared buyers an opportunity to outbid you. Be ready to kickstart the buying process as soon as the seller gives you a nod.

Managing personal finances

Pay day, that time of the month when everyone is practically rich. You get paid and imediately embark on a spending spree; buying all items on offer and dining in expensive restaurants. A few days or weeks later, you decide to check your bank balances only to realize that three quarters of the salary is spent; and the worse part is, you cannot account for any of the cash spent. Well, here are some of the strategies to help you avoid such situations every other month.

Live below your means

Maintaining expenses at levels lower than your salary is a way of achieving financial security. However, living below your means does not mean leading a Spartan life; you can still enjoy life while living small. Just avoid meaningless experiences such as regularly eating outside, paying for unnecessary memberships or subscribing to boring cable channels. Getting rid of such expenses that are less important frees money for other essential things.

Always have an emergency fund

Assuming your car breaks down right now, do you have the money to have it fixed at that particular time? Having extra cash for emergencies is an essential part of financial planning. Financial experts recommend that an emergency fund should cover expenses for a minimum of three months. There are many banking options to consider; pick one that best suits you and begins saving at least 10% of your monthly salary. When choosing a savings plan, always avoid saving in stock markets because of the risks involved; instead, maintain the cash as a liquid investment for easy retrieving during an emergency.

Draft a budget

Just because you have a few bucks does not means that you can purchase every item on offer. Most people fail at managing their money because of the desire to own everything. Therefore, having a budget will help in planning on the amount to spend, and save. A budget is essential in tracking spending; hence, if you do not have it, this is the right time to create one.

Start early

Developing a saving habit early in life is vital in ensuring financial security during retirement. Starting an early saving plan guarantees high interest. Saving for retirement needs to begin as soon as one gets a job, thus, if you have not begun your journey to retirement, now is the time. It is never too late to begin; however, as soon the journey starts, concentrate on increasing the savings as much as possible.