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Archive for Month: May 2014

4 Major Advantages Of AARP for Small Business

There are hundreds of advantages of AARP. In fact, I get more benefits from belonging to this club than from any other. Below are some of my favorite AARP advantages.

1. Easy Way To Meet Friendly Business Owners One of the monthly events I look forward to each month is the local chapter AARP meeting. There is always an interesting guest speaker and plenty of time to chat with others while enjoying free refreshments. In fact, this is one of the easiest ways to make new friends and see old friends. If you move to a new town where you don’t know anyone, going to the monthly AARP meeting is an easy way to make new friends.

2. Save Money At Participating Restaurants Everyone loves to eat out with friends and family. However, eating out can get expensive, especially if you are on a limited budget. AARP can really help in this department because you can get discounts at many restaurants just by showing your AARP card. For example, you can get 15% off at Denny’s and Outback Steakhouse, 10% off at Landry’s Seafood, and 25% off at Papa Johns. Some restaurants will give you something free like a free donut at Dunkin Donuts when you get a coffee. You can also go online and get all kinds of discounts from local restaurants in your area by entering in your zip code.

3. Good Discounts At Stores AARP members get discounts at many well known stores. For example, I was recently able to spoil the grandkids with some gifts from Toys R Us where I saved $5.00 off my purchase. I was also able to get two for the price of one when I bought bed sheet sets at Macy’s. We got a free coupon book that we can use at several stores at a nearby outlet mall. We saved more than $200 on our last Christmas shopping trip.

4. Travel Discounts While most people know about the hotel discounts you can almost always get, I’m surprised to find that many people don’t realize they can also get deep discounts on car rentals, airline tickets, and cruise packages. In some cases, you can also get free upgrades on your car rentals so you can upgrade to a mid-size car for the price of an economy car or upgrade to a luxury car for the price of a mid-size car. There are many other advantages of AARP like deep discounts on life insurance, car insurance, and home insurance but the advantages listed above are some of my personal favorites. When you join AARP, you continually get good offers in the mail. You should also always check to see if you can get an AARP discount before you make any purchases. Your savings can easily add up to hundreds of dollars, if not thousands of dollars, per year!  Now that they no longer offer a long-term care insurance discount, the savings are less than they used to be, but still good.

Have a Business? Good. Now Plan for the Long Haul!

Starting a business is far from simple: it involves tasks and thinking that may be completely new to you. Once you start your business, though, it becomes an inherent part of your life. For many people, their businesses are like their babies. They have created them, nurtured them, and watched them grow into something successful over time. With all that work under your belt, making sure you don’t lose your hard earned profits from business is important to keeping both you and your company financially afloat.

Planning Long Term 

More and more, older individuals are beginning to branch out and start their own businesses. No longer just young entrepreneurs, start-ups are shifting towards an older population. Boomers who aren’t ready to retire just yet but don’t want to continue their same job are turning to start ups to help fulfill their desire for an exciting and challenging position. Whether you are in your 30s or in your 60s, though, it doesn’t matter. The need to protect your assets is the same.

If you have experienced success in your business, chances are you have made it out pretty well financially. Hopefully you have enough money saved to cover your retirement (or are at least on your way to that goal) and have a basic plan for your golden years laid out. There is one event that can quickly disrupt and disassemble all of your nicely organized plan and bring it to rubble. Long term health care can happen to any one at any time and often involves huge health care bills that most people can’t afford without prior planning.

You might be thinking, “Long term care? That’s just for old people!”. Well, that may have been the case at one point, but that is certainly no longer the case today. In fact, 40% of all individuals receiving long term care are between the ages of 18 and 65. Long term health care isn’t just for the elderly. It involves services for a number of things including bad falls, recovery from illness or surgery, heart attack, stroke, Alzheimer’s, and other conditions that require care and assistance, whether it is for just a few months or several years. Pigeonholing long term care into something only for seniors that isn’t necessary can end up costing you big.

Protect Your Business

Because long term care can happy at any time, it makes sense to plan early. Looking into coverage when you are 20 might not make sense, but when you reach your 40s or 50s, it is the ideal time to begin planning for long term care. Just one year of home health care costs more than $40,000. If you have put all your time and energy into your own business and suddenly suffer a bad fall at work, you may be forced to spend all that hard-earned money from your business on your own care. Not exactly the ideal situation, is it?

Business owners are typically savvy people. They can recognize true risks and understand the need for various protections to help keep their business up and running. Long term care is something that if you research for just a few minutes, you will recognize is a huge risk. Too many people have spent through their retirement savings because they weren’t aware of the risk that long term care posed to their assets, leaving them desolate. Putting hard work into your own company means you need to recognize the value of your hard work and help shield your assets from any risk that might come your way, because many exist.

Most states in the US have partnership plans that help individuals plan for long term care, so looking into the program in your state can help you begin the planning process. Planning for the long haul is crucial to any successful business. You must be prepared for any curveballs that could be thrown your way, and long term care is a very expensive curveball.

Owning your own business is an amazing experience that is unlike anything else. The ability to control every aspect of your own work makes all the hard work worth it. Just don’t risk it all by failing to plan for big health care costs later down the road. If you are looking into starting your own business, please read our previous post on strategies to help you decide whether or not beginning your own company is right for you.

Starting a Business The Right Way

With job opportunities being too hard on people nowadays, there is clearly a need for people to think of other ways to earn money other than getting a job. One good tip for those who wants earn some cash is by starting their own business. It doesn’t need to be big and costly because anyone can start a business with only a small capital and apparently, as it succeeds and grows, the business becomes bigger. And for a newcomer in the business industry, you probably have no idea on what to do first and what to expect from your business.

Opening up a business on your own is not as easy as being employed on a job. It requires a lot of preparations as well as a very creative and organized mind. This is why here are some tips for newbies like you who wants to have their own business:

START FROM SCRATCH: Draft everything that you want for your business. Do some brainstorming of ideas with your family or friends so that you have a clear view of the business that you want to have and to what services you can offer to people.

ASK YOURSELF “Why do I want to start a business?” : With this question going through your mind, you have got to know your purpose or goal with regards to why you want to start this business. You also need to have a clear answer for that question in order for you to be ready for running your very own business.

DETERMINE WHAT KIND OF BUSINESS DO YOU WANT TO HAVE: Is it a cake store? Does it have something to do with automotive? Is it a salon? Those are just some business ideas that anyone can start with. You need to be clear of what kind of business that is suitable for you to run because sometimes, it can also be based on your capabilities as the owner of the company.

MAKE A SIMPLE BUSINESS PLAN: This business plan is just a basic one indicating your assumptions as to what will happen to the business, the target sales and everything that you can write as the owner of the business. With those assumptions of yours, you will be a lot more dedicated to reach them together with your team.

DETERMINE YOUR TARGET CUSTOMERS: Where are you planning to place your business? What do those people in your target area need? Is the population more on women or men? All you need to do is to make some extensive research about the area and their needs for your customers to patronize your products and services.

DO THE PERFECT WAY OF PRICING: Of course don’t just think of cheap prices for your customers. As the business owner, you also have to think that you have to gain sale as well so that you can regain whatever you spent with your products and services. Think of a price that is reasonable enough and can really make your customers satisfied.

THINK ABOUT STARTING EVERYTHING SMALL: Of course with only limited capital, you need to be creative and wise enough as to how you will start your small-scale business. You may do it first right at your home and sell it to your neighbours and friends and as you gain more and more profit, you can make the business bigger and even rent out a space in the market. Just be wise enough as the owner in order for you to maximize everything that you have.

THINK OF A SMART PLAN ON HOW TO GAIN CUSTOMERS: Starting your business in a small-scale method really takes a lot of time and patience in order to gain customers. As the owner, it is your duty to think of creative ideas on how you can gain customers without spending that much. You may use the social media in order to promote your products and services or you can stick to the old school way of promoting by means of flyers or brochures. Everything depends on your marketing strategy in order for your business to be a hit and increases your sales as well.

These are just SOME tips when starting a business for your own. Please take note that it depends on your skills and capabilities as a person as to how you will open up your business in order to gain more sales and as well as to attract more customers. A great mind set is really recommended for you to put your goals into action so that you will be successful and you will gain a lot of sale and customers in order for you to make your business bigger and more known by people.

Living into a world where you are the boss and you are running your own business is something to be proud of because first of all, you are the one who is in control of everything. You have your team to help you up with everything that you need with regards to your business. But it is really a different life compared to being employed because clearly, it is happening in opposite ways. If you are employed, you are the one who is working and taking the commands of your boss whereas with your own business, you are the boss, you are making the commands for your workers and you are in control.

With the above tips, it can really help you think about if you are sure about running your own business or you are still fond of being employed. It takes a lot of effort and adjustment at first but as you go through the business process, you will find out for yourself that the experience is quite enjoyable and really a great joy for you as the owner. All you have to do is to work hard and be dedicated to everything that you do in order for your business to develop and grow. Learn to start from scratch because this is your key to being successful.