Transforming Your Office Space to Increase Employee Productivity

On average, most people spend 40 hours working. Statistics show that an average person spends about 30 percent of their life at work. What this means for any employer is that the office space should give your employees the stimuli they need to improve productivity. Here what you Read more

4 Ways to Enjoy Your First Whale Watching Trip

Whale watching in Western Australia is one of the top activities for both locals and tourists. If it’s your first time to see the whales in their natural habitat, here are some tips on how to make your trip a great one. Research on the best time to see the Read more

6 Jewellery-Making Techniques for Thriving Artisans

Jewellery making is an art form of its own. The craft requires deep thought, utmost patience, and a set of skills developed through time. If you are a thriving jewellery maker, below are six techniques to learn. Wire-Wrapping Beginners and experienced jewellery designers practice wire-wrapping because it can make Read more

Your Employees: Are They Tangible or Intangible Assets?

Posted on by Cata-Blog in Finance | Comments Off on Your Employees: Are They Tangible or Intangible Assets?

In your business, you would know that your assets fall into two categories: tangible and intangible assets. But what about your employees? The question whether employees are tangible, intangible, or even assets at all is a tricky one.

Tangible vs Intangible

Legal consultants such as AssetProtectionAtty.com define tangible assets as things you can convert to employeecash such as investments, property, and things that you can sell. Intangible assets on the other hand are nonphysical things like your copyrights, and trademarks, and even Internet domains.

Obviously, an employee is a physical being but you cannot really sell them for cash as you can with other tangible assets. Technically, they come out as expenses on your balance sheet but this does not mean that they are not assets.

Skills as Assets

Employees seem to fall in-between these two types of assets and the answer to the big question is simpler than you think. When it comes to hiring people, you do not really hire them for who they are but what they do. It is the employees’ skills and qualifications that you look for, and in this light, their abilities can be intangible assets.

Despite this, you cannot actually place an employee’s skills in your balance sheet. Basically, assets are things that you own, and you do not really own an employee’s skills even if you did play a hand in training them. You can guide your employees, instruct them when to use their skills and all that, but these abilities ultimately belong to them.

Whether you consider employees as tangible or intangible, they no doubt play an important role in your business’ success. A troubling thought is how you can actually secure your employees as your principal “assets” despite all the technicalities.

It is simple: keep them happy. Make them like working and working for you. Treat them fairly and with the same respect they give to you. Even if you decide to sell your business they might just follow you to your new venture, and a reliable employee is an “asset”you can never replace.

Utah Homeowner Troubles: The Curious Case of Mortgage

Posted on by Cata-Blog in Finance | Comments Off on Utah Homeowner Troubles: The Curious Case of Mortgage

mortgageLiving in Utah and starting a family on this side of the world has many benefits. Ask any native Utahn and you will be convinced that this is most probably true, except for one thing – mortgage.

Mortgage problems are always present in every stage and unless you were born with a silver spoon, you cannot easily escape the pangs of mortgage anxiety. Here are the problems you may just bump into when dealing with mortgage loans:

Selecting a program

There are loads of mortgage loan options on the market. There are fixed-rate or adjustable loans, for a start. You may qualify for first-time homeowner grant or other state specific benefits. Do you qualify for refinancing? Consulting mortgage experts like AltiusMortgage.com can save you the dilemma of determining what the best program is for you as many factors affect your selection. For a head start, you may want to consider the price of the property you are meaning to buy.

Application

Applying for mortgage is tough, but not as tough as the maintaining or settling part, which will be tackled later. The application process may be different from one lender to another. The basic discussion or interview will revolve around income, household expenses, underwriting, collateral, credit score, assets and history of employment. Getting a passing credit score is where most people get stuck. At the present, a good score falls to 680 and higher.

Settlement

This stage is based from what you have agreed on. It really depends if your contract sufficiently predicts your requirements, like, is a five-year mortgage settlement within your capacity? Can you really pay the monthly requirement that consists of principal, interest and accompanying taxes?

Every adult may have dealt with or are dealing with mortgage loans. Get as much data as you can to help you make an informed decision.

Circumstances that May Affect Your Investments (and what you can do about them)

Posted on by Cata-Blog in Finance | Comments Off on Circumstances that May Affect Your Investments (and what you can do about them)

financial investmentAn old maxim says, “Money makes the world go round.” Most people would deny this, but everyone knows deep down that this is quite true. People need money to buy the things they need and live comfortably. This is the reason getting a job is essential to live in this world. People work hard to save up for a house, a car, a child’s education, etc. Some other people use their wits and skills to start a business and amass wealth.

Unfortunately, just as it is difficult to collect money, it is also easy to lose it. You can take precautionary measures to protect your wealth by enrolling in an insurance policy or getting an asset protection attorney. Utah state and federal laws support these types of defenses as an assistance to citizens who worked hard for their money.

Here are some incidents that may let you lose your investments if you aren’t being careful:

Bankruptcy

Whether you own a company or have stocks invested in a corporation, liquidation is a great threat to your funds. Not only will it affect your income, but all other reserves as well, whether monetary or non-monetary. It may even be possible that you will not be able to retrieve most of the assets you put into the business.

Lawsuits and other legal problems

Apart from reputation that is at stake, getting in court can be heavy on the expense. That is not mentioning the probability of properties that the petitioner may take away from you. This may involve a large amount of money for compensation, or physical properties, especially in the case of divorce.

Illnesses / Accidents

You may take good care of your business, but there are instances that may still take a great deal away from your funds. These unforeseen circumstances include sudden medical diagnosis, calamities, and accidents. Unlike bankruptcy and lawsuits, you will not be able to prepare for the healthcare costs and other expenses without safety nets like insurance.

Nobody wants the fruit of their hard work swept away in an instant. Your properties and your savings are the product of years of labor. There are many institutions that can assist in securing your wealth against these circumstances. Utilize them so you won’t have to worry about your future.

Spending Spree: Premier League Clubs Spend Whopping £835m

Posted on by Wileene Grace Olimpo in Finance | Comments Off on Spending Spree: Premier League Clubs Spend Whopping £835m

football stadiumEnglish premier clubs have spent a record of 835 million pounds on transfers in the summer window, a total that was nearly double the sum spent by any of Europe’s top leagues.

Record-Setting Transfer Period

According to an analysis by football finance expert Deloitte, £530 million has gone overseas, £240 million was spent to Premier League clubs, and £65 million went to Football League teams.

During the transfer window, the report shows that Manchester United was the biggest spender, with a record of £150 million spent.

‘Increased Resources’

“We continue to see the increased resources that Premier League clubs enjoy, as a result of improved broadcast deals, translate into investment in players,” said Dan Jones, partner at Deloitte’s Sport Business Group, in a statement.

“Last season the average Premier League club received over £25m more in central broadcast distributions than they did in 2012/13, which has helped fuel a new record spend this summer.”

Industry watchers believe that the increasing local and international broadcast deals boosted the spending of clubs.

Struggling Food Industry: UK Companies Hit By Russia’s Import Ban

Posted on by Tyrone Archibeque in Finance | Comments Off on Struggling Food Industry: UK Companies Hit By Russia’s Import Ban

Unloading_Frozen_Fish_IJmuidenMany UK companies are affected by Russia’s ban on food imports as a result of the sanctions made in the country.

Conflict in Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree, known as the tit-for-tat ban, that will restrict food imports from EU and other countries that have implemented sanctions on Russia due to its support to Ukraine rebels.

Fruits, vegetables, fish, and meat will no longer be exported to Russia.

Some companies explain the impact import ban will have on businesses.

Direct impact on business

“It will have a big impact on business,” said Sinclair Banks, boss of fishing and fish processing firm Lunar.

Kingfisher Chief Executive Sir Ian Cheshire, on the other hand, has discussed potential disruption.

“We’re clearly concerned that if it went further it would impact us and we’re just having to wait and see and also try and switch where we can to more domestic sources [for products]. But the market longer-term for us there is still a solid one,” he said in a statement.

Bigger companies have already announced they might be affected with Russia’s decision.

Refurbishing Buildings for Less

Posted on by Tyrone Archibeque in Finance | Comments Off on Refurbishing Buildings for Less

Remodelling and renovations cost some serious money, but they are necessary as your company expands. Of course, you don’t have to spend more than you have to in order to carry out these improvements.

renovationHere are a few budget-saving tips when it comes to remodelling:

  1. Prioritise your commercial refurbishments according to need. Which ones are for pure aesthetics and which are for ergonomic improvements? Prioritise those that will improve your workplace environment for both employees and clients alike. Gauge whether you can afford to finish all renovations in one go, or schedule them sporadically to give you a chance to allot the necessary budget.
  2. Schedule in the off season. This may slow your business at odd times but if you don’t renovate when other commercial establishments are renovating, you can get products and services at low prices. Builders charge less during off season when they need the work. Refurbishments around holidays can be expensive because many use that down time to renovate as well.
  3. Alter plumbing and electricity at your own risk. Not only are these types of renovations expensive, they also need more time to complete. These may result in lengthy business interruptions that lead to loss of business. Don’t lose potential profit because you got caught up making your workplace pretty.
  4. Ignore trends. Once you follow architectural and interior trends, you’ll be bound to follow them at the risk of working in a dated environment. Go for classy and timeless. Changes that still look fresh and modern in 20 years mean 20 years of minor renovations instead of major building projects every five years or so.

The less money you spend on building renovations and the like, the more you have for daily operations. You can have the beautiful office and a functioning business model by learning where to save and where to spend.

U.S. Banks Prep For Fed Second Health Checkup

Posted on by Tyrone Archibeque in Finance | Comments Off on U.S. Banks Prep For Fed Second Health Checkup

US FederalReserveSystemSome of the biggest banks in the U.S. make some preparations to go through the tests initiated by the U.S. Federal Reserve to determine their strength and endurance in case the next crisis strikes up. The program is part of the two-step yearly regulatory assessment of the biggest banks in the U.S. Initially, all but one of the 30 banking institutions has passed a replicated crisis of the global recession nearly 5 years ago.

The Exception

Of all the banks that took the assessment, only Zions Bancorp didn’t get to the upper 5% of the brink for the set capital criterion. This, however, does not warrant the approval of their shareholder payout.

Some Disagreements

A number of banking institutions seem to disagree with the Federal Reserve’s scores last week. Among the banks that revealed the results of their tests include Bank of America and Wells Fargo. Regulators in Europe, on the other hand, intend to have their own assessments this year.

Pandora Raises Subscription Price As Competition Heightens

Posted on by Tyrone Archibeque in Finance | Comments Off on Pandora Raises Subscription Price As Competition Heightens
Image by waynesutton12 via Flickr

Image by waynesutton12 via Flickr

Citing an increase in operations cost, Pandora announced Tuesday, March 18, that it will raise the price of its subscription for new subscribers from $3.99 to $4.99 a month. The firm said existing monthly subscribers will keep their current rate for now.

No More Annual Service

The streaming music service will also ditch the option to subscribe to its service annually. Its annual service only costs $36.00, saving users $11 a year compared to the monthly subscription. Customers who currently have an annual subscription will have to migrate to a $3.99 monthly rate when they’re due to renew.

Increased Operations Cost

Pandora said the change was spurred by increased operations cost, including the royalty rates it pays regularly to digital performance rights organization SoundExchange. It affects about 3.3 million of its 250 million registered users.

The decision comes after the company struggles to stay profitable. Pandora posted a $9 million profit last quarter, but forecasted a loss for the coming quarter as the cost of operation increases.

Increasing Your PPO Reimbursements: When Your Hard Work Is Not Paying You Well

Posted on by Tyrone Archibeque in Finance | Comments Off on Increasing Your PPO Reimbursements: When Your Hard Work Is Not Paying You Well

choosing dental planAs a private practice dentist, having a connection with dental insurance companies is necessary. This way, you’ll receive reimbursements through the patients you work with. These PPO dental plan fees and reimbursements, however, aren’t always enough. There are instances when insurance companies give you less than what you deserve. This is why you should know how to negotiate your reimbursements successfully.

Personal Insurance Profile

Do a SWOT (Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis to figure out how you’ll negotiate with the insurance provider. Enumerate all the insurance plans you’re part of, including the plans under the shared network category. Find out if you’re losing patients because you’re not part of specific PPO plans. Decide if you should sign up for PPO contracts that label you under a shared dental network. Focus on at least 30 to 40 dental procedures that you always perform. If possible, include those that have alternative benefits or down coding.

Professional Leverage

Don’t believe others when they tell you that private practice has small advantages. Having a doctorate title is enough to get respect from insurers. Find out if you’re a non-Metropolitan Statistical Area (non-MSA or those who practice in rural locations) or a Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) dentist. These will help you identify the fee schedule the insurers will issue according to your dental practices. If your private clinic is 25 miles away from the nearest metropolitan area and serves less than 25,000 residents, then you’re a non-MSA. This allows you to get 25% higher PPO dental fee and reimbursement from insurance companies.

Negotiating Process

Compose a short, simple letter to start the negotiation process. Limit it to two paragraphs and save the important points for the succeeding conversations. Know the right person to address. Network recruiters, or retention specialists, tend to respond to concerns more than the Directors of Finance and other upper management staff.

Negotiating your reimbursements allow you to get the fees you deserve. Search for effective strategies and define your advantage to get a positive feedback from insurance companies.

Sources:

http://www.animated-teeth.com/dental_insurance/t4_dental_insurance.htm
http://www.dentaltown.com/dentaltown/Blogs.aspx?action=VIEWPOST&b=80&bp=217&v=1
http://www.everestadvocate.com/dental-insurance-101/ppo/

Investment 101: Things to Consider when Buying a Motel

Posted on by Tyrone Archibeque in Finance | Comments Off on Investment 101: Things to Consider when Buying a Motel

puirchasing motel for saleExpanding your assets through property acquisition is a good financial pursuit. Some investments, however, are not worth investing in the first place. There are other good financial options available, and with careful consideration, you can make the right choice.

Motels, for instance, are not only ideal investments but are also good precursors to other types of business and industries. These can jump start your investment portfolio and lead you to other pursuits. The key now is to learn more about buying motels and make the most out of your purchase.

Freehold vs Leasehold

One thing you should consider if you are planning to buy a motel for sale is choosing between a free hold and a leasehold type of propriety. A freehold estate means you own the property in perpetuity. You are responsible in almost every activity that involves the motel, including initial developments, refurbishing, business operations, and maintenance.

On the other hand, leasehold allows you to have business control over the property over a given set of time. In other words, after the lease license has expired, you have to turn over the operations back to the freehold license owner.

Sustainability and the Foreseeable Future

Purchasing a motel is a challenging yet rewarding endeavour. This is why many people aspire to acquire a good freehold motel for sale, according to statistics. Buying, however, is only half of the picture. Running and maintaining one is entirely a different story.

If you are mulling over a motel acquisition, take into account the business side of it. After all, an unused property is not a good investment at all. See to it that before you even look into different estate values in the market, you have the capacity to run an entire motel.

Another part of the equation is the socioeconomic impact of your purchase. A motel can improve the employment rate of the surrounding area. You will never know how much help a large-scale accommodation business can help a community.

Ultimately, buying a hotel is all about guts. It takes extensive deliberation and study to come into a decision to purchase one. After all, it just might be the missing asset in your investment portfolio.