How To Have the Wedding Reception You Want at a Price You Can Afford

Getting hitched isn’t cheap, and for most weddings, the reception is typically the biggest expense. Your wedding is one of the most important days of your life, and one you want to remember. However, there’s no need to go into debt. It’s possible to have a beautiful memorable wedding reception, regardless of your budget. If you don’t want to sink boatloads of money into a single (although very special) day, here are some useful tips for planning the wedding reception of your dreams at a price you can afford.

Stay Organised

It’s best not to rush into spending right at the start of your wedding planning. Figure out the reception theme, colour and general layout before you start shopping. This will help you avoid costly mistakes. More importantly, once you’ve found a reception venue within your price range, stop looking and make a deposit payment right away to secure it.

Think Outside the Box for Reception Venues

Professional wedding planners agree that the venue eats up almost half of the wedding budget. Consider hosting the reception at home or outside to cut back on expenses. An outdoor ceremony in a venue with sentimental value eliminates the need for an over the-top venue. Heavy rain or scorching heat can put a damper on your day, so remember to plan for the weather if you do decide on an outdoor event.

Save on Reception Food

Besides the actual venue, food and drinks can also eat right into your wedding budget.

Even if your reception offers a full menu, you can still create a budget-friendly wedding reception menu for even more savings. Keep in mind that the cheapest option for drinks at receptions is to serve non-alcoholic beverages. However, you can add some variety with one type of beer, one champagne brand and a mixed cocktail.

Keep Track of your Guest List

When it comes to reception guest lists, less is sometimes more. Every guest is an expense and with each addition, you’re only driving up the overall cost of your wedding reception.

Consider hosting a smaller, more intimate reception with close family members and friends in attendance. Another way to cut your guest list is to invite more guests to the actual ceremony while you host a smaller reception.

Plan Low-Cost Entertainment

Amazing entertainment at your reception doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. With a little creativity, you can find a cheap alternative to a band or a wedding DJ. Make your own playlist on an iPod or mp3 player and connect it to the central sound system at your reception venue. Other fun and low-cost things to try include wedding reception games such as bride and groom trivia. Be sure to ask a friend or sibling to lead the games so that you can relax and have fun at your reception.

Most of all, congratulations! Don’t stress too much, and remember that your wedding is about the two of you and your life together. Create a plan using these tips and stick to it, and you’ll be able to have a great reception without emptying your life savings.

Demystifying Private Equity and Investors: 4 Things You Need to Understand

Private Equity and Investors

To deal with private equity investors, you’ll need to understand them. They may seem like a tough nut to crack, but once you know what they want and what drives them, you can adapt your strategy accordingly to get the most out of them. Firstly the question we must question we must ask ourselves is“what is private equity”?

Private equity involves investing in unlisted companies with the intention to sell them at a gain after having created added value. A private equity investor may buy a company at any stage and then build it for a few years before letting it go. In the 90s, many private equity funds were created to facilitate investments in private companies. They raised finance from investors to acquire promising companies with the aim to make them more profitable.
Unfortunately, there are many misconceptions about private equity firms. However, this article will help you tell the difference between fact and fiction. So, what do you need to understand about private equity?

1. Private Equity Firms Work Hard to see a Business Grow

Money is not the only value private equity firms bring to the table. They also provide access to a high level of information and expertise in different fields. Contrary to the opinion that they strip companies of their best assets, they invest in various strategies such as acquisition and integration of smaller competitors, repositioning of outdated concepts and expanding a company’s geographical footprint, and so on. No one would give you their money and want to watch you fail. They want the returns as much as you do, so they put in the work.

Read AlsoWhy You NEED to Invest in Your 20s

2. Private Equity Investors Want Returns

If you believe that investors are hard to please, you wouldn’t be wrong because that’s the truth. In the early nineties, the returns were high, so more people were willing to invest.

Now, the returns are not what they once were, so investors have become more selective. You need to remember that they’re wanting to build wealth through your business, so your success will also be their success.

3. They Think of the End Game Right from the Start

Private equity firms are ultimately looking to sell a business after having grown it and made it more profitable. If an investor is going to invest in a business, then they must be able to see the possibility of a profitable exit.

This is when relationships between investors and business can become strained, as the goals of both parties might no longer converge; investors are looking to gain a return on their investment but the business owner is navigating the ups and downs that come with building their brand.

4. Private Equity Firms are Always Looking for Value

Unlike venture capitalists, private equity firms go out to look for potential investment opportunities and may approach you if you seem like a good fit for them. That doesn’t mean that you cannot approach a private equity firm yourself, but your company has to be the right fit for their profile. While they won’t engage in the day-to-day running of the firm, they may appoint certain individuals to the management board.

Like you, investors are looking to maximise returns, so a lot of what they do will come back to that.

Are Speed and Reliability Key to Choosing an eCommerce Hosting Solution?

eCommerce Hosting Solution

With hundreds of ecommerce websites being born every week and ecommerce giants such as Amazon making it hard for new businesses to make headway, the ecommerce playing field is extremely competitive. If you own an ecommerce business and you want to succeed in this competitive arena, you need all the advantage you can get. One particular aspect of your ecommerce website needs to be the very best if you want to stay competitive and that is the ecommerce hosting solution you are using.

The hosting solution you are utilising will significantly impact your ability to be able to communicate with your customers and showcase your products and services effectively via your website. If your ecommerce website is in anyway unattractive or unappealing, be it due to slow loading speed, frequent downtime, or security issues, chances are very high that ecommerce customers will not even bother with your website regardless how nice your product offerings are.

Read AlsoTop Social Media Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

So how do you then pick the very best ecommerce hosting solution for your website? Well, Speed and Reliability are very important. But they aren’t the only attributes you should be looking out for when trying to pick the best hosting solution for your business

Site Speed

Site speed is very important because the average online shopper doesn’t have the patience to wait on a slow loading website when there are multiple online businesses offering exactly what you are offering far more efficiently. If you want to make sure that your customers have a positive user experience that guarantees they will come back to use your services or refer your ecommerce website to their friends, you should opt for a hosting solution that guarantees optimal page loading speed.

The speed of your website is also one of the factors that will be used by search engines to determine how highly your website should be ranked in search engine results. The higher you’re ranking, the more organic traffic you will get to your website and thus more customers to purchase your goods.

Reliability

The reliability of a web hosting solution covers issues such as security and uptime, both of which should be the very best in order to keep your customers safe and ensure they can access your services anytime they are ready to shop.

Uptime refers to time which your website is available, accessible and operational. While no web host can guarantee a 100% uptime, you shouldn’t opt for a web host that offers anything less than 99.9 percent uptime. This is because your ecommerce website is a 24/7 venture that customers should be able to access on any day and at any time. Think of it this way, every second your website is offline is a potential customer and sale lost.

Other Factors

Other attributes that your hosting solution provider should be able to deliver on include scalability and affordability. Web hosting that offers scalability means it offers enough resources for your ecommerce website to expand and grow as time passes to meet the growing needs of your customers. As for affordability, well there’s no reason you shouldn’t get the best hosting service at the lowest price so as to minimise overhead and maximise profit.

Easy Methods for Breaking into the Trading World

Trading

Ever since the early development of Wall Street, financial instrument trading has been big business. With the internet now bringing traders and brokers closer together than ever before, it’s now very simple to get involved in this kind of work. All it takes is a bit of knowledge and some hard work and you’ll be on your way to trading success. With that in mind, here are just some of the easier ways to kick-start a career in trading.

Research up Front

While spending time reading up on the complex ins and outs of trading might seem counterintuitive if you’re looking for simple and easy options, it actually makes a lot of sense to invest time in this at the start. By learning skills such as fundamental analysis and economic calendar comprehension, you’ll be able to cut out many of the potential time-wasting opportunities from later in the process. Once you’ve learnt how to analyze a chart using technical indicators, for example, it will become much easier to do and you won’t have to rely on trial and error.

Stick to the Simple Methods

While no trading method is ever perfect or guaranteed, some are definitely easier to master than others. Swing trading, which is easy to grasp due to its reliance on trading between obvious and clear extremes, is one such way to do it. Swing trading book reviews can help you in this regard: again, it’s worth investing the time upfront in learning how to do it in order to make it easier in the long run. Other methods that are commonly used by those who are looking for a simple trading experience include moving average crossovers and breakouts.

Consider Social Trading

If you’re looking to really save time when trading, meanwhile, then it may be worth considering looking into social trading. Platforms and brokers that offer this service allow you to find a more established and experienced trader based on your own risk appetite and needs, and then automatically copy that person’s trades. If you find someone who goes on to make a profit, then you will also profit in proportion. You should ensure that you do your research properly before you make the decision to use a platform like this, though: as with all trading methods, there’s still no guarantee that you will profit – and if the portfolio of the trader you copy goes down in value, then so will yours.

Trading isn’t simple, and there’s no quick fix to get a profit. However, plenty of traders have discovered that there are ways to cut down on the complexities involved and make the process as simple as possible. From opting for methods such as swing trading to doing your research in books and online, there are plenty of ways to enjoy a faster and more streamlined trading career.

Important Things to Remember When Managing a Team

managers

Managers play a central role in the growth and development of the team they manage, as well as the individual members of their team. They are responsible for many things, like facilitating the team, building the work culture, bringing out each member’s potential and nurturing their talent, and making objective, fair decisions.

When managers are unable to meet their responsibilities, it’s not just the team that suffers; the whole organization feels the burden. The best employees slowly disengage until they decide to quit. The employees who stay will perform the minimum standard at best; at worst, they will actively sabotage their work.

It is the leader’s duty to manage their team well and increase employee engagement to boost productivity and retain talented employees. To do this, a manager must keep in mind several things.

Set Clear, Challenging Goals

The team needs specific, clear goals in the same way a builder needs a blueprint to form a house. Without goals, each member won’t know what tasks they need to perform and what they are trying to achieve with their efforts.

Managers need to be transparent and meticulous in creating and communicating the organization’s goals. Not just that, they also have to relate this on a team and employee level. For example, the company’s goal is to be the number one brand in the industry. How can ordinary employees to contribute to this?

It is the leader’s responsibility to come up with team goals that stem from the organization’s greater goal. These team goals must be specific, measurable, realistic, and time-bound. Most of all, they must be challenging to lead to greater performance, according to Edwin Locke’s goal-setting theory. The higher the goals, the more rewarding it is to complete them.

Setting clear and challenging goals improves employee performance and allows better and more specific feedback that can boost employee motivation and good behavior.

Create a Healthy and Open Work Environment

The employees’ willingness to attain the organization’s goals determines their job motivation. But what sustains it depends on several factors. One of the most important factors is the work environment.

To create this environment, managers must encourage open communication and cooperation between employees. They must listen to the team and give value to the each member’s contribution. Most of all, they have to be authentic and transparent. They should not be afraid to put their trust in their employees and ask for help when they need it.

A healthy and open work environment empowers employees to generate more ideas and confidently share them with the rest of the team. It also creates a culture of teamwork, where each member is working not just for individual gain, but also for the benefit of the whole team. In an environment like this, even disagreements can be had respectfully and constructively.

Managers are also responsible for creating a safe and healthy work environment. They must be proactive in making sure that the organization complies to safety standards set by the law, such as ensuring employees pass workplace drug tests, maintaining cleanliness in the office, and preparing for emergency situations.

Provide Valuable Trainings and Opportunities

It’s part of the manager’s duty to ensure that each and every member of the team is equipped with right knowledge and skill to perform their job well. As the organization grows, every team and employee is expected to develop with it.

Greater goals will demand higher skill levels and expertise. Rather than looking for new talents, managers should nurture the ones who are under them. Providing trainings and opportunities will bring out employee potential and increase proficiency. Employees will not remain stagnant.

In a classroom, developmentally advanced students need to be constantly challenged and engaged to keep them interested. The same goes for your most talented employees.

Most of them aren’t really in it for the money; they can find that at other companies. What they want is constant growth and development, as well as appreciation and recognition for their exceptional performance. You can keep your best employees if you can secure those without faltering.

Retaining top talent is a continuous, laborious job for managers, but the returns are more than worth it. “Employees with all three—good fit, high engagement and 10+ years at an organization—dominate performance. They perform 18 percent higher than the average employee and 35 percent higher than a worker who lacks all three elements,” says a Gallup survey on why the talented employees leave.

Recognize Effort, Reward Achievement

Abraham Maslow, one of the most influential psychologists of all time, proposed a hierarchy of needs to explain the human motivation. At the second tier of the pyramid are the esteem needs—recognition, status, importance, and respect from others. Maslow posits that all humans have a need to feel respected, accepted, and valued by others, which leads them to engage in activities, like a job or a hobby, to gain recognition.

Most employees don’t enter and stay in a company for the salary alone. If it were only that, people will not make such a big deal about entering a reputable company with a good work environment.

Employees want to be appreciated and valued for their work. When they are respected and accepted by their leaders and coworkers, they take pride in their work and are more motivated to do well.

One mistake that many managers commit is failing to recognize employees who have worked hard and only rewarding those who have exceptional achievements. While employees have different needs that motivate them, being appreciated for working hard is a universal need. Managers can reward exceptional performance, but they shouldn’t forget those who do the daily grind.

Build Your Dream Team

As a manager, you should take the lead and be what you want your employees to be. Instead of competing with your employees, you must work to make them better and put your trust in them. The leaders are the links between the organization and the employees.

Rarely do employees build direct relationships with the organization. They build their loyalty and commitment through their leader. If their manager doesn’t do their job, then employees will leave and look for a good organization with responsible managers.

Problems with Business Money Transfers

Money Transfers

Money Transfers are a common part of the business landscape: whether you’re paying a supplier or receiving cash from a client, it’s likely that you find yourself on one side or another of the transfer cycle on a regular basis. But there are lots of reasons why business Money Transfers can go wrong if they’re not properly executed. The transfer channel you use might not be fully secure against fraud, for example, while moving money internationally can also cause headaches. Here are some of the main obstacles to a successful transfer, and how to avoid them.

Trust and Security

Moving a large amount of money from one place to another inevitably necessitates an element of trust. You’ll most likely have to use a third party in order to get the job done, such as a bank or an online payment provider like PayPal. And while these services often have plenty of measures in place to ensure that you don’t get defrauded while moving your money, even the most rigorous and secure sites can’t defend against user error. When moving money online, then, always ensure that you conduct business on a secure, private computer where passwords and other sensitive security data can’t be monitored.

Charges and Fees

If you’re moving a large amount of money from one place to another, it’s possible that you’ll be required to pay a fee. After all, fees and charges are how many of these platforms make their money. Some banks might not charge you for transfers, but some will – so it pays to be prepared. Usually, it’s wise to do your research on which platforms are the best for you well in advance of the transfer date. You should also speak to the sender or recipient, too, and ask them which platforms they would prefer. If one of you has to pay a fee but the other doesn’t, depending on the business relationship you have it may be worth negotiating to split the cost.

Moving Cash Abroad

When an international dimension is introduced to the monetary transaction, though, the whole thing becomes a bit more complex at the drop of a hat. It’s likely that you’ll have to pay a fee in addition to potentially losing out on the exchange rate (depending on the destination), so it’s worth shopping around. It’s also a good idea to prioritize customer service so that you can get any queries handled quickly. For international transfers out of the USA, it’s a good idea to work with money transfer companies in New York in order to get the best possible service.

When it comes to money transfers, it’s wise to ensure that you’re on the ball as much as possible. From preventing fraud from taking place to ensuring that any cash you move is done so in a way that keeps fees as low as possible, there are lots of things to look out for when making a business transfer either domestically or internationally.

Buying an Investment Property in Surrey BC

Investment Property

Surrey BC Real Estate

Surrey is quickly becoming a booming metropolitan area. While real estate prices are currently considered affordable compared to other regions in the Greater Vancouver Area, price tags and Investment Property are expected to rise. With more economic growth expected to happen across Surrey in the next few years, now could be an excellent time to invest in a Investment Property. You can earn money by renting the property, and you’ll benefit as the home’s value goes up giving you more money to open bank accounts.

Surrey is an up and coming city for families – this makes it an excellent place to invest in rental property. Homes in Surrey are selling quick, on average a home is on the market for only 17 days. The city of Surrey is massive, and there are plenty of detached home, condos, and town homes available for sale. So whatever your budget for an investment property, there should be a listing that meets your needs.

Getting a Mortgage in Surrey

Once you’ve found a property to invest in, you’ll need to secure financing in order to pay for it. It is always highly recommended to work with a Surrey Mortgage Broker.

Securing financing for a rental property can be tricky, which is one of the reasons we recommend using a mortgage broker instead of walking into your local bank branch. Banks are limited to offering only their own products. So even if they approve you, you may not be getting the best deal available.

A Surrey mortgage broker works with multiple lenders and banks. When you work with them, they compare the mortgage products from all their connections, and present you with only the best choices. This help ensure that you’re getting the best product, and the best rate. Additionally, working with a mortgage broker is free. There really is no reason not to work with a mortgage broker in Surrey for securing an investment property.

Interest Rates in Surrey

Mortgage rates for investment properties in Surrey that are non-owner occupied, are often just slightly higher than the interest rate you would receive for your primary residence. Of course that is assuming you already meet all the lender’s requirements, have acceptable credit and reasonable down payment.

It is important to note than in order to get a mortgage for an investment property in Surrey, you’ll need to be able to pass what is known as the stress test. The stress test is being able to qualify for the Bank of Canada’s 5 year benchmark rate, or your proposed contract rate plus 2% – whichever is higher. To put in simple terms, if at the time of your mortgage the lender is offering you a rate of 2.5% and the benchmark rate is currently at 5.25%, you’re going to need to be able to prove to the lender that you would be financially capable of paying your mortgage down if the rate was 5.25% (Although you will only be required to pay 2.5%)

Pros and Cons of Rental Property in Surrey

Investing in rental property is a big step, and it is important to weight the pros and cons before making such a big decision. Below are some of the top pros and cons of purchasing rental property in Surrey BC.

Pros

Steady Income – Of course, the main reason people invest in rental property is for the monthly paycheck. Unlike risky investments, a good and stable tenant will pay you on time every month so you can count on the steady income.

Tenants Pay your Mortgage – While you are the one who has applied for the mortgage, with tenants in the home, they are actually the ones who end up paying down the mortgage via their rent. Eventually once the mortgage ends, you’ll completely own a huge asset that someone else paid the loan for!

Protection Against Inflation – Inflation, the rising of prices due to money losing value is inevitable. As the cost of food, and gas go up with inflation so does your home value and the amount you charge for rent. But your fixed rate mortgage payments will stay exactly the same, essentially “protecting” you from inflation.

Cons

Tenant Risk – Being a landlord is a tough job. Whenever anything goes wrong, you are the one the tenant calls. Whether it’s 4pm or 4am, the tenant’s problem is your problem. While you can outsource management tasks to a third party company, they are not cheap.

Possible Crime in Surrey – While crime rates have gone down in Surrey recently, there are still neighborhoods that are a lot rougher around the edges than others. Before diving into an investment property, make sure to do some investigating on the neighborhoods it’s located in. Surrey is a huge city made up of six very different town centres. The safety of each centre can greatly vary.

Non-Liquid Investment – While real estate can provide a steady income when it runs smooth, it is not always easy to get rid of if liquidation is required. Selling a home often takes months and months, which is not ideal if you are in a pinch and need cash right away. On the other hand something like stocks (while possibly more risky) can be sold for cash almost immediately at any given time.

A Guide to Contracting in the UK

Contracting in the UK

Becoming an independent contracting in the UK can be a daunting prospect – say goodbye to your steady salary, employee benefits and normal working hours. However, say hello to greater flexibility, higher earnings and more personal freedom. If this is your first time dipping into the world of contracting in the UK, then read this guide to help ensure you understand the requirements.

Guide to Contracting in the UK

Your CV

Since you’re going to be working for a much higher number of different employers than a full-time employee, your CV is going to be under frequent and intense scrutiny. That means it needs to really sell you and your skills. Put your skills first and foremost, since these are what clients are going to be looking for. Also, use case studies on your CV that highlight your skills and show how you have helped other clients. Finally, make sure your CV looks clean and professional – clients will be turned off by poorly designed or formatted CVs. There are plenty of guides available to help you write a great contractor CV.

Networking

This dirty word is a large part of contracting. You should be collecting business cards like they’re Panini stickers. Whenever you get a new client, give them several of your business cards to give to clients of theirs. Keep in touch with former clients and prod them every few months to see if they are in need of your services.

Use Agencies

For most contractors, the majority of their work comes from agencies. These are matchmakers for clients and contractors, facilitating fruitful partnerships and, importantly, steady work for you. There are agencies which specialise in certain industries, so find the right ones for the type of work you do and sign up to all of them. The more you sign up to, the greater your pool of potential clients will be.

Read AlsoTips to Build a Friendly Environment at Work

Payroll

As a contractor, you have control over how you are paid. Contractors might choose to become a limited company or will use an umbrella company for administrative purposes. Using an umbrella company brings the advantages of having the administration of payroll, invoicing, tax, etc., taken care of by specialists. You can set payroll up quickly to sort out contractor pay as simply as possible. Using an umbrella company is also a great way of making sure that you remain compliant with IR35 and you will be paid PAYE, as if you were a full-time employee.

The Contract

Contracts are the basis for the agreement, the services you are providing and the conditions in which they are provided, so make sure that you get the contract right for both parties. It is essential that terms are defined, commercial obligations are clear, and you decide on how arbitration should take place. There are several resources available to help you with contract writing, so make use of them.

Time

You are very unlikely to be able to work full-time, or even part-time for an employer, and also be a contractor. Embracing the life of a contractor often means giving up employment in order to make sure you have the time to deliver work for all of your clients and find more clients to work with. Be prepared to make a decision between your employment and your contracting work.

Why You NEED to Invest in Your 20s

For most young people, being in their 20s comes with changes and figuring out life. This is the age bracket where people have a high likelihood of getting into too much debt or merely figuring their investment journey. At this age, you have the luxury to take on more risk than older people as you still have a couple of years ahead of you to right the wrongs.

Even with student loan debts, being in your 20s is an advantage as you can get into the investing world and make the most out of it. As a millennial, the idea of making your money work for you is exciting and should be a motivation for all the 20-somethings out there. So, why should you invest at such an age?

1. The Time Advantage

There’s a huge time advantage when you decide to go down that road. As much as you may be repaying your student loan debt as well as battling with a low salary due to your lack of experience, time is still in your favor. Growing an investment as early as this age could help you reinvest such that by the time you are in your 50s and 60s, you have substantial money in form of investments.

2. Less Responsibilities

At such an age, the responsibilities are not as many as at a later time. Your expenses may also not be as much as this is when you are still trying to figure out what investments will work for you. Making a crucial investment decision determines how your future will look like. Have a detailed budget that focuses on minimizing your expenses. This does not mean you should not go for vacation or a night out with friends. This means, however, that everything should be in moderation.

3. More Interest Gained

Putting away some savings comes in handy. What’s even more liberating is knowing that the money saved is earning interest. As such, the earlier you start saving, the more interest your money earns. Get financial institutions that offer such services and make a comparison on what works best for you.

Read Also: How to and Where to Invest When you are Broke?

 4. More Informed Choices due to Technology

 Technology is such a powerful tool when investing. Millennials (twenty-somethings) are quite tech-savvy. They are informed on the latest trends and are quick to learn different apps. As such, with the rise of varying online trading platforms, it’s easier for them to learn and discover the countless opportunities available. At such an age, not everybody understands investment tricks, however, you can look up stash invest reviews for comprehensive lessons. Social media comes in handy with opening your mind to a world of incredible opportunities. With investment discussions going on online, you get to find out what works for you.

5. Complements on Employment

What happens if you dislike your job? Or suddenly lose your job? If you had no other plan b, you go back to the drawing board which could make life unbearable. Investments come to complement your job in cases like these that you may have no control over. Look for a steady investment that will act as a complement to your career.

6. You Have the Chance to Learn

As a young investor, you have the chance to learn about investing. You have years to learn about investments and how to approach different options such as the stock market. Through successes and failures, you get to fine tune your journey as you learn how certain decisions affect the curve. Learning through your mistakes helps figure out your journey and perfect it such that you are able to figure out what strategies work for you.

Read AlsoIs playing the Lottery a Type of Investment?

7. Higher Risk than Older People

It’s easier for a young investor to take on a high-risk opportunity than an older investor.

When in your 20s, you can withstand higher risk because you still have time to make things right. However, during retirement, you may not have the luxury to explore all opportunities available as some are higher than others as they may end up in you losing your lifetime savings. Therefore, invest when still young for discovery of mega investments that could result in high returns.

While investing is a brilliant idea, here are a few factors to consider before you consider investing:

  • Never compromise on paying any debt. Your credit score solely depends on how timely you are in paying credit cards as well as any other debt owed. In case of any difficulty, ensure to talk to your lenders and come up with a flexible repayment plan.
  • What do you intend to achieve in the next 5 or 10 years? Have set goals for what you want in life and start working towards that. Having a vision will help you have the discipline to work towards actualizing it.
  • The power of a budget. Budgeting helps you have a plan. Your budget should include the money you set for investing every month. This way, you are working towards being free financially and establishing a foundation for your future.

As a young investor, don’t be afraid to invest. Life is all about risks. Read a lot as information is a powerful tool when making such crucial decision. If at analyzing yourself you feel you need a financial advisor, get one. Do not invest in something because you hear that people are making millions out of it, invest in it because you know about it and you have analyzed the risk level and you are comfortable with it.

Is playing the Lottery a Type of Investment?

Lots of investment schemes allow you to pay in a small amount of money, even just a couple of dollars every week, in the hope that one day this will grow into a large pot. Does that sound familiar? In some ways, it’s just like playing the lottery – a similarity which may well make you wonder if funneling your cash into the magic weekly draw might well be a decent investment decision after all. Here, we’ll take a look at how playing the lottery compares to other major forms of investment.

Stock Market

Investing your money in the stock market is one potential method to consider if you’re hoping to build returns over time. Many people who make the decision to invest and build a diverse portfolio covering lots of different stock interests do find themselves earning something back as time marches on, although as with the lottery, it’s not guaranteed.

However, while there’s a possibility that the stock market can provide returns over time, there’s one way in which playing the lottery is almost always going to beat the markets. That lies in the size of the prize money for larger jackpots! When it comes to playing the lottery, the amount that you’ll win if you win big will pretty much always trump anything you’d get from investing in the stock market – so if you’re happy to forego relatively small dividends over time on the off chance that you’ll cash in a million dollars, then the lottery is definitely for you.

Forex Trading

One type of alternative investing which is growing in popularity these days is trading foreign exchange (Forex) currencies. By betting on how prices between two different international currencies (such as the US dollar and the Canadian dollar, for example) are going to change, you can in theory profit from the difference if you predict correctly.

While the word “trading” might give this form of investment more of a reputable veneer, it’s not necessarily the case that you’re likely to win. In fact, despite being known as an alternative investment, it’s suggested by some that the systems used are deliberately stacked against you. While the odds of winning the lottery are also relatively low, they’re also fair: anyone’s numbers can come up, and they’re generated at random. With Forex trading an element of expertise is essential and you can lose a lot of money very quickly if things go against you – which makes the lottery suddenly seem a whole lot more appealing.

Buying a Property

Those who disapprove of the lottery might say: “Oh, you could have bought a condo by now if you’d saved up all that money you spend on tickets every week!” And while that might be true, saving and sacrificing to buy a condo wouldn’t necessarily have been the smartest move. Despite property having a reputation for being a “safe bet” when it comes to investment decision making, it’s not always the case.

Real estate prices in Manhattan, for example, have dropped recently to their worst quarter in more than five years – so there’s no certainty that investing in bricks and mortar will reap rewards. As this example shows, the odds of success when investing in property aren’t exactly guaranteed – so you might as well invest in the lottery instead! But whatever path you choose, if you find yourself wondering “what are the odds of winning the lottery” then it’s worth taking some tips on how best to maximize your chances – just as you would for property.

Playing the lottery is fun and enjoyable, and it gives you a chance to daydream about what it would be like if you didn’t have to commute to work in traffic every day or put up with a job you dislike. And while many people might laugh at the idea of calling it an investment, it’s clear that there’s some truth to the idea. Very few investments are 100% risk free, and the lottery is just another example of where money can possibly make you rich without it being guaranteed.

In fact, when the lottery makes you rich it pulls out all of the stops. Unlike some forms of investment, which take your money and then pay back paltry returns over a period of years, the lottery can give you a huge windfall at any moment – which as an amateur could change your life more than any property investment or well-executed stock market trade would!