3 Questions to Ask Before Consolidating Your Debts

3 Questions to Ask Before Consolidating Your Debts

People have a negative connotation when it comes to debts. However, debts can help people pursue bigger dreams and major financial decisions like purchasing or financing their dream home. For example, My Loan Solution offers loans for those who are looking to finance their wedding, childbirth, or for a major surgical operation. People acquire loans for different reasons.

Then again, the negative outlook on debt comes from people who owe too much debt. Debt can change your life — and its results can either be fortunate or disastrous. The key with debt is that you must have the ability to stay on top of it; it is a responsibility you have to maintain. A series of failing to ease off your debt will only result into more debts, locking you into a chain of endless payments and loaning.

The good thing is, there are many ways to pay off your debt. Americans have an average of $132,500 in debt. That does not stem from one debt alone; with that huge amount of debt average, it comes from different kinds of debts that someone had acquired in his life.

One of the common strategies in managing and paying off debts is consolidating your debts. There are many ways to pay off your debt through consolidation:

  • Adjusting the payment terms of your loans,
  • Availing a loan to pay off all previous debts,
  • Moving credit card accounts to lower rates

These ways may be appealing to you already, but before you apply for debt consolidation, here are three questions to ask yourself to determine if it is right for you:

Can consolidation help me save money or is it more expensive?

When you purchase a treadmill via credit card, chances are that it costs more than buying it on cash basis. Some will offer it with low-interest rates, and others will again offer low to no interest rates but for a limited time only.

The same principle goes with debt consolidation. Other lending companies can consolidate your loans for a lower rate, and all the perks you can imagine, but that’s not always the case. Oftentimes, low-interest rates are available for a limited time only. Debt consolidation might be an attractive solution, but it’s not free from other fees that may make it harder for you to settle.

Our tip: do a self-consolidation. Gather your accounts and compute how much are you going to pay for each, considering all rates and other fees. You might find out that you’ll pay less by virtuously paying on your own, on time.

If I consolidate my debts, am I able to pay it off on time?

If you’ve consolidated your debts, it’s easier to pay your debt because you only have one or a few creditors to pay. This means you can easily plan your budget across your savings and expenses.

On the other hand, this might be difficult for some as consolidating debts means paying more money than what you’re used to. Some people with debt focus on paying one debt at a time, and that works for them. If you can manage to pay off your debts one at a time, assess if debt consolidation can lessen the burden of late payments over time. 

Should I consider consolidating my debts?

Whether you’re leaning towards easier payment, convenience, or timely paying off your loan, you should thoroughly think about it.

Assess your current situation and look at how consolidation can help or can aggravate your debt situation. Consolidating your loans only combines all your debts, but it is still debt. You didn’t necessarily cut off your debt. It’s a debt you get to pay all your debts. Some eventually adopt a false sense of security because they had this idea that they’re no longer paying too much, which makes them lax about spending.

Since this is still a debt you have to pay, you have to practice discipline to go through this loan.

The Busy Single Mom’s Tips for Caring for Your Child’s Braces

The Busy Single Mom’s Tips for Caring for Your Child’s Braces

Did your child get a new set of braces, like many do? If they have, you’ll know that they can be hard to care for.

In fact, having braces is often an inconvenience, particularly if you are not used to them. The good news is that you can help them care for them effectively if you remember a few simple tips. Before you know it, your little one will be time to take your braces off and reveal your beautiful new smile!

  1. Be Realistic

Having braces is a different experience. Your teeth will feel weird. It may be hard to eat certain foods. You may even feel some discomfort, particularly at night when you have nothing else to distract you. Keep reminding yourself that this will all pass. You will find a new normal, with braces, and it will be hard to remember what it felt like not to have them. However, go into the process understanding that things will be different for a while. This mentality will help you to adjust to the changes in your life with relative ease.

  1. Smile

When you smile, you show off how confident you are. Some people go into the process of getting braces filled with dread. They think that braces will be terrible, and they are worried about how they will look. However, it is important to consider that there are a lot of people in this world with braces. It can’t be THAT bad. Also, remember to smile. When you have a beautiful smile, no one will really pay attention to anything else.

  1. Eat Carefully

Your teeth will likely be sore when your braces are first put on. That means you should choose foods that don’t require a lot of chewing. For example, soup, applesauce and smoothies are a great option. There’s nothing wrong with a little ice cream to help yourself feel better, either. Soon, though, you will be ready for different food. You must still make careful selections, because some foods (like carrots and apples) have a tendency to get stuck in your braces. They can even damage your orthodontia. If a piece of food does get stuck, it is often really hard to get out. Therefore, avoid hard candies, ice, bagels and chips. Stay away from gum and tootsie rolls. If you want to eat a fruit or a vegetable that is hard, cut it into bite size pieces.

It isn’t going to be easy to clean your teeth well. That means that you should avoid certain foods that often cause cavities, at least until you have your care routine down pat. In general, you should stay away from soda, pastries and candy, because they have a lot of sugar in them. If you do have a treat, make sure you brush right away. Some toothbrushes are better for this task than others; look for one that neutralizes sugar. Your dentist is a great resource if you aren’t sure where to look. Also, food like popcorn, which gets stuck easily in braces, should be avoided. Caramels, nuts and corn on the cob are not great choices either. Remember, it is better to be safe than sorry.

  1. Care For Your Teeth

You likely already take good care of your teeth. However, when you have braces, you have to pay even more attention to what you are doing. You must brush and floss regularly; the braces can trap food and harbor plaque, so a good cleaning routine is essential. Your dentist may be able to provide you with chewable tablets that help you see where plaque is currently hiding. Be vigilant so that you don’t have dental problems down the line.

It is not only important to brush and floss, but it is important to brush and floss the right way. That means making sure that you brush for at least two minutes. Take your time to make sure you get under your wires. Also, when you are flossing, you have to maneuver around the wires, which is not always easy. Tackle each tooth to make sure that you are cleaning properly. If he hasn’t already given you one, speak to your dentist about a wire brush that will help you clean around your wires and brackets. That little tool is essential in helping you get rid of plaque. Before you call it quits, use a mouthwash to help rinse. Ideally, you want one that advertises the fact that it gets rid of plaque. If you can’t tell already, plaque commonly causes issues for people with braces. You must be as diligent as possible in order to keep your teeth and gums healthy. 

  1. Be Colorful

Why look the same as everyone else? If you put colored rubber bands on your braces, you can personalize your look so that your smile is uniquely yours. You can choose one color or several different colors. You can change up the rubber bands each time you go to the dentist or stick with the same color over time. Do whatever you want, but make your braces part of your look. They aren’t going away any time soon, after all.

  1. Moisturize

Your lips are affected by your braces as well. It is easy for them to dry out and become chapped, which is why it is so important to apply a lip balm consistently. Start as soon as your braces are put on so that you don’t run into any trouble. In fact, it is best to apply a layer just prior to going in to see the orthodontist to have the braces put on. The process is a little slow, and your lips may become chapped and uncomfortable if you don’t take this step. That’s the last thing you need when you will be dealing with a new set of braces.

Cyber Secure Your Child With FamilyTime Parental Control!

Cyber Secure Your Child With FamilyTime Parental Control!

Most kids are tech lovers, have a lot of gadgets and every year wish for the latest ones. Even if not a tech geek, every child has access to the internet now and owns a smartphone or tablet. Kids are as much active on social media, gaming, YouTube and latest trends as the adults, even more than them. They are apt at the digital technology and the internet. They may be pros, but they are kids after all and that is why prone to cyber dangers like cyber bullying, online predation, giving in to peer pressure on social media, sharing sexual content which may be scandalized.

All these things have effects on their emotional stability and health. They are at high a risk of depression and many start suffering from it in their teenage. There is also increase in dry eyes, headaches, fatigue, and digital dementia. Kids unknowingly and sometimes knowingly share personal info online or sexual videos with complete strangers. This is used to blackmail them and then they can’t find a way out of it. Many kids trust their partners and sext with them, however, kids admit to sharing sexts with other people.

All this calls for proper education on cyber security and parental control measures as well. FamilyTime parental control is a highly recommended app which provides several ways to secure your child on the internet and control digital activity.

Look at how it helps you:

Mobile app blocker

Mobile apps like Snapchat and Kik have made sexting very easy. There are dating apps like Tinder which are meant for adults but kids use it too. Then there are other applications that have pornographic content and are inappropriate for kids. The best way to keep kids away from all this is by not allowing them to use such apps. So a simple way is to block them with the app blocker. You can also restrict social media apps or any app you want.

Screen time limits

The less they go on social media, the less there are chances of cyber bullying, social media drama, and depression. The less they play games, the more active they will be which decreases depression and risk of obesity too. So for that, you can make a screen time schedule for them and ensure they have device-free homework time, bedtime, dinner time and digital breaks through the day.

Browser history

You can view their browser history, frequently used pages and bookmarks to know what they surf and what their interests are. You can know if they are watching porn or going to insecure game rooms and chat rooms.

Text message monitoring

It allows you to monitor their texts regularly. It is a great way to catch sexting, blackmailing and harassment. You can get contact, time and date details too and put unsafe contacts on a Watchlist to get alerted.

Other than these features, FamilyTime also provides family locating so that parents can stay posted about their kids – where they go, check-ins/checkouts, panic calls and speed limits. FamilyTime parental control is the best digital tool that covers all your bases. And all you have to do is get the app for that.

Cyber security is vital

In these times where digital media and technology are unavoidable, cyber securing your kids is the most important thing. It is also essential that along with keeping tabs on their online activity yourself, you educate them about various dangers and the effects these can have on their life. This way they cooperate with you better and get responsible themselves.

10 Creative Ways to Finance a Startup Business

10 Creative Ways to Finance a Startup Business

Funding your start-up can take some time and some foresight however, these 10 creative ways to finance a startup business will give you the boost you need – take a look.

Personal Finance

While most people will think that personal finance is not the most creative of financing option, there are actually a lot of entrepreneurs who have not thought about this.  They will not consider saving up or using their personal savings for their start up.  Most investors will not look at putting money in your venture if they do not see that you have some investment as well.

Unsecured Business Loans

Unsecured business loans can be a fantastic way to get credit and can provide a fast turnaround, so your start-up gets the money quickly. Application processes are typically fast and you can learn more about the whole process from a reputable finance company like https://www.unsecuredfinanceaustralia.com.au.

Family And Friends

Your family and friends are the people who believe in you and will want to see you succeed.  They are also more likely to provide finance without you having real customers or hard assets.  Of course, you should always get this financing in writing or in promissory notes where you convert the loan into equity at a future date.

Peer-To-Peer Lending

Peer-to-peer lending is a newer finance option and works by finding a group of people who lend money to each other.  While this has been around for years, startup businesses are still new to this.  It is best that you look for a lending group that is willing to fund new ideas because not all lending groups will.

Use Crowdfunding

The power of the internet is great for finding people who share your ideas and are willing to provide a small about to back your startup.  Crowdfunding has spread from being for non-profit organizations and you can offer pre-sales or other rewards for people investing in your venture.  The JOBS act which was passed last year will also allow people to make small equity investments this way.

Microloans

There are a number of non-profit and for-profit organizations that offer small loans of up to $35000 in an effort to promote entrepreneurship.  These loans are generally given to people who are unable to secure a loan through the bank.  Some examples of these loans will include the Patriot Express loans.

Vendor Financing

If you require tangible stock for your venture than most manufacturers could be convinced to defer payment on the goods until they have been sold by you.  This will mean an extension of the normal 30-day payment terms that the business uses.  The extension will generally depend on your credit worthiness and the extra fees that you are able to cover. Here is a good piece from Investopedia.

Purchase Order Financing

One of the most common problems that start-ups face is their inability to accept large new orders as they do not have the capital to build and deliver the product.  PO financing will be able to help as the companies offering this will generally advance you the funds to pay the supplier.  This allows the transaction to be completed and for the profit to flow to your business. 

Factoring Accounts Receivable

This is a similar option to PO financing but looks at the unpaid amounts that you are due.  If you have a high volume startup then this will help you scale up.  You can provide cash on your sales immediately instead of waiting for the 30-day payment period to pass.

IRA Financing

Investment retirement account funds and 401(k)s are perhaps the most accessible of the alternate funding sources.  You will not be able to use your own funds for your startup, but other people will be able to loan you money from their self-directed funds.

The 10 Creative Ways To Finance A Startup

Deep Green Carpet Cleaning: A How-To Guide

Deep Green Carpet Cleaning: A How-To Guide

Spot cleaning can only do so much. If you spot clean too much, your carpet becomes covered in bright, white spots. If you don’t spot clean at all, you leave distracting stains all over your carpet. It may not be within your budget to get a professional steam carpet cleaning done each and every time your carpet begins to look spotty. So what do you do? Here’s an easy, ‘green’ way to deep clean your carpets without breaking the bank. This tutorial was created by the highly trained team at Clean Dry and I hope many of you will take this opportunity to learn from carpet cleaning professionals.

Before you start, you’ll want to clear the affected carpets of any furniture. Take them and move them outside (if the weather permits) or into another room. You won’t need them.

Begin the process with a regular spot cleaning before getting into the heavier work. First, vacuum the carpets. Go several times over the same spots, so the whole carpet is thoroughly vacuumed.

Next, mix together ¼ cup salt, ¼ borax and ¼ cup white vinegar. Apply this paste to the heaviest stains in your carpet. Leave the paste to sit for several hours until it dries before vacuuming over the carpet again.

Next, we use the steam cleaner. Don’t use carpet shampoo, which can contain harmful chemicals. Instead, use hot water, which can get grime out of your carpet on its own when used as very high temperatures. Soak the carpet in very hot water before going over it three or four times with the machine on the suction mode, sucking up as much water as you can. A tip for those messiest spots that are the hardest to get out – adding 1 cup of white vinegar to every 2.5 gallons of water will assist when steam cleaning an especially soiled carpet.

Once you finish steam cleaning the carpets, go ahead and steam clean them a second time. Whether you rented the machine, borrowed it or you happen to own one yourself, using it a second time around will only be good for you.

Let the carpets dry. Open windows to create a cross-breeze. Run the ceiling fan and any standing fans (standing on a non-carpeted part of the floor, of course) to circulate the air in the room. Once they’re nearly dry, you can move your furniture back into the rooms. Just a tip – place aluminum foil under furniture legs, to keep any color from bleeding into the wet carpet. Make sure the carpets dry completely before you walk on them again.

As a final step, properly dispose of the water in the steam clean machine. If you rented your machine from a rental service, call the business and inquire if they take the machine back full of if you’re required to drain it. We also recommend calling your local water treatment center for information on how to dispose of the waste water.