Guide to Right Investments

As an individual we all have targets and set goals in our finances, hence adequate information to the right investment is very important. Considering the fact that good investments help us to actualize our objectives in our education, career, capital projects, family needs, etc, then it’s imperative for us to understand these investments.Presently, we are faced with the recovery of the economy after experiencing the global economic meltdown for more than two years of economic impasse. In most African countries, especially Nigeria do not seem to get on a good start as the government has limited funds to inject into the economy (Capital market) unlike other developed nations of the world are currently doing. Therefore, there’s a need for us to make the right decision at this trying period. There are different types of Investments available to us; Savings, Insurance, Bonds, Equities and Stocks, FOREX, Real Estates, Importation and Exportation, and what have you. These may sound interesting, but we must look before we make decisions in our chosen investments.For most people, making the right investment decision can be a tough one. They assume that you need enough money to venture into a lucrative business. It is always a good idea to do some research before you can make a decision as to what you want to invest in. This is better achieved the most when you gather information on your type of investment because you want to make the right investments that would work best for you. It is financially wise for you to know the investment basics so that you will be in a position to have variety of choices. Is this where the use of funds comes in? It is advisable that you use your savings especially if you plan to invest in long term. Moreover, you do not need a lot to get into investing though; you can use your monthly savings and investing consistently. The Stocks and shares option is one of the most popular and profitable business.Also investing in Insurance policy is another guaranteed way of investing without having fear for drop in market price. Unlike the stock market, Insurance is a sure way of getting your money back with a certain accumulated interest over a stipulated period of time that is if there have not been any occurrences before the maturity date. This however, would be discussed exclusively in my subsequent articles.The mutual fund investment option is yet another form of investing whereby organizations collect money from different individuals and use it to venture into suitable quoted company stock at the right time.This reduces your risk of losing money since you are not directly investing in the stock market. You should look out for all loop holes and engage the services of a financial expert to help you make suitable investment choices.Before we delve into the various investments stated above properly, there is a need to highlight the basic Principles of Investments that would be our guide to a successful venture. I shall discuss 5 of these proven principles that would guide us through;The first investment principle we must know is to get the foundation right of any investments plan and all the hiccups we envisaged or encountered would be checked. The problem most people have is that they try to solve their challenges from the surface. It is easy for one to quickly take a pain relieving tablets to stop his toothache problems without knowing the cause. Alright let’s look at our business transactions as an instance. A growing businessman borrows money from his fellow business men to build his business venture. By doing this overtime he became heavily indebted. But in order to be free from his indebtedness, he quickly pays his debts without ever considering the fact that his greatest weakness could be poor financial (money) management. In Nigeria today, an average 60 percent of the population are into entrepreneurship in one business or the other yet most of them have little idea of their venture which accounts for low returns in profit every quarter. This dismay performance could only be attributed to their poor knowledge of the said business, hence the business foundation is lacking. In addressing such situations, understanding the roots of these investments
would place us on the driver’s sit to know where and how to make great returns on our investmentsThe second principle simply tells us to set values in our investments’ plan and life goals generally as a yard stick to take us to our desired expectations. Values are internal anchors we set ahead of time to guide us in time of decisions making. It is also important to note that in our individual offices and business places, values we set for ourselves would determine the future and success of our careers and business ventures. According to Hamel, G. in “Rethinking the basis for Competition” in (Gibson, R (ed) Re-thinking The Future, Nicholas Brealey Publishing, London pp. 76-92 he says that “the big challenge in creating the future is not predicting the future. Instead, the goal is to try to imagine a future that is plausible – a future that you create based on values.” As matter of fact, we must place great values on our investments and businesses for it to grow beyond limits.On the third principles of investments, we must draw out our investments plans and strategy. One does not expect a high dividend as a return on your investments from a quoted company if you don’t invest well on that company. In any investment we do, there is need to know the strategy to adopt in getting good returns. Let’s look at the stock market for instance, you would not be foolish to invest in First Bank PLC in the Nigerian Stock Exchange that has reached its’ bullish state when you know most investors are bailing out after a period of planting then smiling to the banks for a good investment. You have to understand the investment first (foundation) then adopt a particular plan or strategy that would suit it for a stipulated period. That is why; Sun Tzu, great author, posits that “the General who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought while the General who losses make but few calculations beforehand”. You should know that whatever plans or strategy you make does not really guarantee you success as it may not suit the kind of investments you are into but get the right information to guide you through. Hence, you are advised to invest in financial books, business tips or any investment instruments to put you ahead of your contemporaries. By doing this, you must have drawn an investment philosophy that includes your; aim, period, returns and interest of your investments.The fourth Principles would centre on our spiritual strength in business. Knowing that sometimes we face all sorts of problems and setbacks in our investments or business activities, we may not have the physical power to overcome them. To be realistic, we need to look up to God by committing our businesses in His hands irrespective of our religion or faith. According to the Book of Proverbs; “If God can see everything in the world of the dead, he can also see in our hearts.” If we commit our ways to God, He would direct our paths. We should always seek Him when faced with any problems. I also suggest you renew your minds with great spiritual and inspirational materials. Great authors like; T.D. Jakes, John Mason, Joyce Meryce, Mathew Ashimolowo, Dale Carnegie, etc have wonderful works that can nourish our soul and make us achievers even in the face of adversity. You would find out that what you consider as problems are not problems, but some stumbling blocks you encountered as challenges to your road to success.The last Principles of investments which is the fifth, has to do with you as an individual. As a child while growing up, we all aspired to be one great professional in our chosen field. That’s the reason why Education could be adjudged as the highest form of investment. I must say that that most professionals or CEOs these days don’t utilize five percent of their brain. With the latest technologies at our finger tips, we seldom use our brain to work even getting the least calculations. Knowledge they say is power. The more knowledge we acquire, the more resourceful we become in affecting our lives positively. We have to invest in ourselves to improve on our business ideas and skills as change is inevitable. To buttress this point, let’s look at Romans 12:2; “and be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what is good and acceptable and perfect will of God”. Please make it a habit to invest huge part of your income on your brain and mind, as it’s such an investment that you would receive a 100% returns.Remember, knowledge is part of the key to all successful businesses. Follow these basic principles of investments guide and you would be amazed how your business would grow in greater profits.

10 Businesses You Can Start For $500 Or Less!

Long time statistics have shown that 9 out of 10 new businesses fail in their first year. Lack of planning and financial ruin is one of the most common causes. Starting small is a way to insure minimal risk in new business. The founder of Dell computers was a college dropout on a shoe-string budget who started his business out of his garage. One in three computers sold today is a Dell.The following is a list of just some of the businesses you can start for $500 or less.
Housekeeping – Requirements/ household cleaners, mop, broom, vacuum, towels, bucket, business cards – approximate cost $150. Molly Maids is a multi-million dollar business started with a broom, a mop, and quality and reliable service. I can guarantee you that the CEO of Molly Maids doesn’t clean houses any longer.

Gardening or landscaping – Requirements/ mower, edger, blower, rake, shovel, clippers, business cards – approximate cost $450. Some education won’t hurt you here, but even without it, how much money did you make mowing the neighbors yard when you were young?

Internet sales – Requirements/ computer – approximate cost $500. It’s likely you already have a computer at home so this just might be the cheapest and easiest business to start. It has been estimated that by the year 2020, nearly all retail purchases will be done over the World Wide Web. Getting on the bandwagon now may set you up for a prosperous internet business in the near future. Look into working with “drop ship” companies to avoid up front expense and storage fees.

Mobile food service – Requirements/ business cards – approximate cost $30. With a half hour lunch break, employees at many companies have little time to leave work and order lunch. Providing a morning menu for lunchtime delivery can be helpful to these people and provide a good source of income for you. Your job? Call in the order, pick it up, and deliver it; for a fee of course. Delivering 15 lunches to one company at $3 to $5 profit apiece can add up quick. Or how about a hot dog cart at special events?

Pool service – Requirements/ pool cleaning supplies, start-up chemicals, brush, net, hose, business cards – Approximate cost $400. States with warmer climates have many homes with swimming pools needing weekly care. Service to numerous homes in the same area can net you a small fortune. Business cards on the door or mailbox lets the homeowner know you are available. It may take some time to get a solid clientele, but be patient; established pool service routes can be very valuable if and when you decide to call it quits.

Consulting service – Requirements/ know-how, business cards – Approximate cost $30. What do you know that might be of monetary value to others? Sell your smarts!

Delivery service – Requirements/ the car, scooter, or bicycle you may already have/ business cards – Approximate cost $30. A great business within large city limits. Corporations, small businesses, restaurants, etc. may be in need of delivery services. Whether it is paper documents, payrolls, food, or other items, delivery services can be a steady and profitable business.

Painter – Requirements/ brushes, rollers, edger’s, towels, tarps, business cards – Approximate cost $200. Visit local hardware stores to let them know you are available for work and will purchase paint through their stores. Their referrals may keep you busy for months at a time.

Handyman – Requirements/ basic tools, business cards – Approximate cost $500. Depending on they type of jobs you acquire in this business, a contractors license may eventually be required. Check with your local and state government offices to determine at what point you will need one.

Daycare – Requirements/ toys, educational materials, bedding, a safe and clean home, love – Approximate cost $300. This business requires patience and child care experience. If you care for more than three children at one time, it’s likely you will be required to be licensed. Check with your local and state government offices for restrictions and requirements.
Most of these business start-up ideas will require an additional two items you likely already have; an automobile and a telephone. But otherwise, they are super simple and easy to start new businesses suitable for nearly anyone wanting to become self-employed.The key to having a successful business is to do what you would enjoy doing anyway. Make a list of the things you like to do and follow that with an extended list of ways to make money in a related business. Be creative with your business idea, there are many more options available for you than you probably realize!

10 Ways To Boost Your Credit Score

1. Deleting Errors in 48 HoursThis is the absolute fastest way to correct errors on your credit
report and raise your credit score. However, it can only be done
through a mortgage company or a bank. If you apply for a home
loan and find errors on your credit report, request the loan
officer to conduct a Rapid Rescore. But don’t mistake it for the
credit clinic tactic of multiple dispute letters.The Rapid Rescore strategy requires proper paperwork. You need
proof that the item is incorrect. It must come from the creditor
directly. For example, a letter stating the account is not your
account, a letter stating the account was paid satisfactorily,
a release of lien, a satisfaction of judgment, a bankruptcy
discharge, a letter for deletion of collection account or any
relevant evidence.This is the same documentation a bank or mortgage company would
require for the credit accounts anyways. The difference is, now
you can improve your credit score and receive a lower interest
rate. The results are not guaranteed and will run you about $50
per account.2. Deleting Negative CreditThis is the infamous area where you’ve heard of all the scams.
Credit repair clinics charge “an arm and a leg” and promise a
clean credit report. Sometimes even a new credit profile! People
spending hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars for something
they can do themselves.Removing errors is simple. Deleting negative credit that is
accurate requires advanced methods. But that is not the scope
of this report. So I’ll focus on the deleting the negative
errors.Credit report errors easily disappear by using a simple dispute
letter. If you have the paperwork proving the error as mentioned
above in Rapid Rescore, send copies of that along with the
dispute letter. This will make the credit bureau’s job easier and
you will get faster results.If you don’t have the documentation to prove the error(s), send
the dispute letter anyway. According to federal law, the credit
bureau’s have a “reasonable time” to validate your claim. They
will contact the creditor for verification of your dispute. Then
the account will be reported accurately – or deleted. It has been
generally accepted the “reasonable time” to complete this task is
30 days.If you’re not the do-it-yourself kind of person. Or don’t have
the time. You could hire someone who is very economical.3. PiggyBack Someone’s CreditThis is a fast and great little credit score booster. But it
requires a very trusting relationship. Simply put, someone else
adds you to their credit account. For example, when applying for
a credit card, you may have seen the section to add a card holder.
If your trusting person adds you, their payment history is now
reported on your credit report too. If they have perfect credit,
now you have a perfect account.To make this more effective, use an aged account. Imagine if your
trusted person has a 10 year old credit card account with a
perfect payment history and a balance of only 50% of the credit
limit. Wouldn’t you love to have this on your credit report? The
easy part is your trusted person just calls the credit card
company and requests a form to add a cardholder. Once completed
and activated, their entire account history and future is now
firmly planted on your account. Imagine if you secured 3-5 of
these accounts – especially installment accounts. Your credit
score could sky-rocket!The challenging part? Finding the trusted person. Since you already
have a low credit score and bad credit, how eager will someone be
to make you a cardholder? Even your parents don’t want you to
damage their credit. But, no one says you need to possess the card!
In other words, your trusted person could add you as a card holder
and never give you the card or PIN or any information. Since the
bills and all account information is still mailed to the trusted
person’s address, you won’t know anything about the account. This
scenario could land you many trusted persons. And you still benefit
with a higher credit score.4. Playing Round RobinThis strategy is one of the oldest credit building techniques
around. It used to be accomplished with secured savings accounts.
But now, it’s much easier with secured credit cards. In fact,
I’ve used this method myself.Here’s how it works: Take ,000 (or what you can afford) and get
a secured credit card. Once received, get a cash advance of 70%
of your credit limit. Get a second secured credit card. Once
received, get a cash advance of 70% of your credit limit. Get a
third secured credit card. Once received, get a cash advance of
70% of your credit limit.Open a new checking account with the final cash advance. Use this
account only for making payments on your three new credit cards.
If you make your payments on time every month, your credit score
will increase because you now have three new perfect payment
credit cards. (Initially, your credit score might drop a few
points due to the rapid, multiple accounts being opened. However,
be patient because within 4 months of no new accounts or any
delinquencies of any account, you will see your credit score
increase. Mine increased 60 points in 60 days!!)5. Pay on TimeThis one is quite obvious. But after 12.5 years in the mortgage
business, I discovered it still needs repeating. Your creditors
were gracious enough to loan you money. Now pay your damn bills!
If you don’t, your credit score decreases. EVEN IF ONLY 30 DAYS
LATE!That’s right folks. For some reason people think, “I’m only a
few weeks late. What’s the big deal?” Well, for the loan company,
if you pay late but consistent, they make a lot more money with
late fees and more interest (if a simple interest loan). For you,
your credit score is damaged. If you think long-term and credit
score, I’m certain you would not have a cavalier attitude.6. Pay Down DebtsThis seems like an obvious method, doesn’t it? But it is not as
transparent as you might think. Remember, we’re playing with
high-level statistics and probabilities which evaluates and
forecasts trends in your behavior. Here’s what you do…Never pay off your revolving debt in it’s entirety! Isn’t that a
surprise? Think about it. Your credit score is a reflection of
your ability to manage your credit. Paying off your debt is not
managing your debt. If you have a zero balance, how can you manage
it? You don’t. It no longer exists. And you cannot manage what
does not exist, right? Therefore, in terms of credit score, you
have demonstrated your ability to swiftly pay off accounts to
avoid managing them. Thus, slightly decreasing your credit score.One exception, of course, is if you’re over extended to begin
with. Pay off what’s necessary to make your credit profile look
great. Then manage the remaining credit.7. Don’t Close AccountsEven if you pay off revolving debts, do not close the account.
The longer an account is open with no negative reports, the
better it reflects in your overall credit score. This is due to
the weighted-average in the credit score formula. Many credit
experts suggest a balance of 30% of your credit limit. That’s
ideal. But you can go as high as 70% and still maintain a
healthy credit score.8. No New CreditYou must be vigilant in your credit behavior if you want the best
credit score. Therefore, do not get any new credit unless it is
absolutely necessary. Each time you apply for credit, an inquiry
is added to your report. This usually drops your credit score
slightly. When you have fresh credit, there is no track record
how you will manage (or pay) this account. Therefore, it’s a
higher risk which results in a minor drop in your credit score.
Remember, your credit score is about risk assessment.Here’s what you do: obtain credit for your housing, transportation,
college or continued education and 3-5 credit cards. That’s really
all you need for personal credit. If you want more credit, request
a credit limit increase on your current cards rather than apply
for new ones.9. Maintain A Mix of Credit TypesIf you show you can handle different types of credit at the same
time, you are rewarded with a great credit score. In other words,
get installment loans like vehicle, personal loan or mortgage.
Get revolving credit like credit cards: Visa, Mastercard, Sears,
Sunoco Gas, Costco. By mixing it up, you demonstrate you can
manage your credit because you will have short term and long term
credit with a fixed payment. As well as a “variable” monthly
payment on your credit cards.Keep these accounts open with a balance of 70% or less and paid
on time and you will witness your credit score climb to great
heights.10. Don’t File Bankruptcy or ForeclosureHere’s the most obvious advice: Don’t file for bankruptcy or
foreclosure. These stay on your credit report for 10 years and
always decrease your credit score. The older the bankruptcy or
foreclosure account becomes, coupled with re-built credit
history, the less of an impact they play on your credit score.Contrary to popular beliefs, you can legally delete a bankruptcy
and foreclosure. It’s not easy. But it’s possible. See the
advanced methods for that solution.To quickly rebuild your credit history after a bankruptcy or
foreclosure, use the Round Robin strategy above and get secured
credit cards. Now you can even get a car loan or mortgage right
after bankruptcy.© 2004 David Czach.——– Editor’s Note ———-Dave Czach has 12 years experience in the mortgage business and
a Bachelor’s Degree in Real Estate. He can be reached at
http://myLoanHero.com/go.cgi/daveczach.This article may be reprinted without compensation provided
there are no changes whatsoever to the article, the copyright
notice and the complete Editor’s Note. Any reprinting or
duplication without these conditions is copyright infringement.——– Editor’s Note ———-