Benefits of Leasing a Car for Business

Leasing a car for your business is a sensible decision. If yours is a small business or a start-up, leasing a car would prove handy because of lower cost, easy availability and other benefits. This article discusses briefly the benefits of leasing a car for your business.

Monthly payments

In case you purchase a car – new or used, you need to pay cash upfront in full or part. On the other hand, in leasing you need to pay only for part of the residual value. This leads to lower monthly payment.

Further, the overall cost of leasing a car is lower than when it is purchased because the lease period is a short one (generally three years). The lease cost is the present value of the car minus its value when you return it. You need to pay the interest charged and charges for the services. If the value of the car when you return is more than expected, you need to pay less.

It is a better value for your money as you can afford the car at a lower price under a flexible payment plan.

Tax deduction

Taxes to be paid come down because you need to pay only for the value of the car that you use. Further, the amount of interest is spread into multiple months, which results in a lower monthly amount payable.

In addition, as you will have the benefit of a tax deduction for leasing a car, it helps in saving a few hundred dollars.

Less maintenance

You get the leased car with full warranty from the manufacturer. This ensures effective remedial maintenance when needed. In addition, as you lease the car for a short period, you are likely to have fewer maintenance inconveniences.

Guaranteed Asset Protection (GAP) insurance

When leasing a car, you get the benefit of GAP insurance. GAP insurance is part of the lease deal. GAP insurance covers the remaining part of the value of the car to be paid by you in the event it is stolen or damaged completely in a vehicle collision. This value is far smaller than that of new/used vehicles purchased. For a small business like yours, it is important to take note of this.

Purchase option

You lease the car for your business, and use it as long as you would like. At the close of the lease period, you need to hand over the car to the dealer. Now you have the option to buy the car – a new one, or take another one on lease. You need not worry about the resale of the car.

As the owner of a small business, your business is prone to confront fluctuations in business for diverse reasons. Under the circumstances, each dollar you expend is significant. Therefore, when it comes to operating a car for your business, leasing can be an optimal option.

Are You Financially Prepared For An Emergency?

Money is not everything, but for everything you need money. It’s an established fact that money plays a vital role in present-day living. If you are financially prepared, you can easily overcome difficult situations and fix away your problems without getting frail. Life can get you into an emergency without any warning. It requires advance planning and preparation on your part to tackle these kinds of situations effectively.

Are you prepared?

Is your financial information well arranged and properly organized? Have you prepared your will? Have you told anyone about your vital financial information? In case of an evacuation, are your documents ready for the ‘grab and go’? Hurricane, flood, earthquake or theft can come at any time creating an emergency situation. If you are not prepared financially, it’s easy to get into a messy circumstance. On the other hand, if you have a stout monetary support, you can emerge out as a winner.

What can we do?

1. Get out of debt fast

Getting out of debt may seem to be a distant dream at a particular point of time. But, with proper planning, persistent efforts and by curtailing certain extras, you can definitely overcome your debt and avert monetary implications.

a. If you are in debt, you need to take steps to get rid of it, not any other loan for a temporary relief. You should focus on doing three things – Increase your income, recognize what got you into the debt (circumstances or your habits) and based on your assessments take steps to fix your debt.

b. Next, you need to pick a suitable help. Solutions, such as a debt rearrangement loan may work towards your favor, but it will work only when you take this option at the right time and under right circumstances.

c. When you are in a debt, you need to seriously sort out your spending habits and curb on unnecessary expenses. It may be possible that you are repaying your debt with so little progress that it will take a long-long time to repay it fully. By that time, you would have paid manifolds of the principal value. A debt settlement plan may work, but only when you know your priorities well. Failing to do so may sink you further. Thus, you need to control your state of affairs and manipulate your creditors effectively to pay off your debts in an easy manner.

2. Use credit wisely

First of all, don’t finance not affordable lifestyle with your credit cards. Keeping your purchases within your limits is the key. Often, people are lured with the innumerable products available in the market and use credit cards to purchase unreasonable things only to repent at a later stage. Credit card is a marvelous facility, but works out to be beneficial only when used with astuteness.

a. If you are already into a financial trouble, avoid using credit cards. Pertaining fees and other monetary charges can add up to your debt. However, using a credit card to tackle a financial difficulty is better than to arrange funds by keeping your house on mortgage.

b. Raise your bar; don’t get hooked to the minimum payments. Paying only the minimum amount due will eventually elongate the repayment period, and by the time you repay all your dues, you would have actually paid multiple times of the amount you took on credit.

c. Don’t get fooled by the low teaser temporary rates; money borrowed during promotional low-interest rates is most likely to be carried on to the higher permanent rates. Make your credit card payments on time and avoid surcharges and penalties. This will also increase your credit score.

3. Get organized

Your spouse, anyone of your adult children or someone who is entrusted to handle your finances should know where your property papers, contracts, documents and policies etc. are located. By making plans ahead of the time, you can actually ease the stress that your loved ones would face in the event of your illness or sudden demise.

7 Tips For Credit Card Management

The invention of credit cards was a giant leap forward for humans. People around the world use their credit cards for all kinds of purchases and payments. The credit cards give the people, the freedom of purchasing what they want, without having to depend on their bank balance. Credit cards are used by all kinds of people in cities and towns across the world. It is a fact that a credit card can be a boon as well as a bane at the same time.

At times, people do not know how to effectively manage their credit cards. This is why, their credit score is severely affected and they find it hard to acquire financial assistance from banks and other lenders. In order to make sure that your credit score is not affected, you need to effectively manage your cards. You need to be careful about making payments and using the card for any purchase.

When you make your credit card payments on time, your credit score improves and you can obtain higher amount of credit. On the other hand, if you fail to make the payments on time, your credit score is negatively affected and you may not get any further credit from financial institutions. Here are a few important tips which will help you in effectively managing your credit cards:

1. Plan your purchases – Before purchasing or buying any product, determine if it is necessary to buy it. You must make a list of your priorities and stick to that so that you can arrange for the money needed to pay your credit card bills. At any point of time, make sure that you do not purchase something too expensive as it will make you cross your monthly budget or the credit limit on your card.

An effective way of way of planning your purchases is to make a shopping list. At the beginning of the month, try to make a list of things you need to buy with the card and stick to that list as much as possible.

2. Always check your statements – Check your statements on a monthly basis as the statements will help you understand your spending pattern. Based on your observation, you can try to avoid unnecessary purchases. Also, checking the statements will help you in knowing the minimum payment due for a particular month, so that you can make that payment on time and avoid extra charges or fees.

You can easily check your statements online, and you can also use your smartphones to keep a track on your card usage. Mobile alerts can be very helpful in ensuring that you do not end up paying more than what you are supposed to, when you use your credit card for any transaction.

3. Try to make full payment – Try to make full payments, whenever possible. When you pay your credit cards in full and within the due date, you do not have to pay any interest on the billed amount. Besides, paying the credit card balances in full will help in improving your credit score. Even if you are not able to pay your credit card balances in full, you should always make sure that you pay the minimum amount due, within the due date.

Apart from saving a substantial amount of money on interest, you will also be able to improve your credit score and increase your chances of obtaining more credit in the future.

4. Keep a track of supplementary cards – At times, you might forget the fact that you have provided supplementary cards to your family members and these cards are linked to your credit card account. The way these cards are used can have an impact on your credit card account. Hence, you should keep a track on them and also ensure that the transactions completed with them are paid for within the payment due date.

Besides, you also need to keep a track of these cards so that you can ensure that the credit limit of your card is not exceeded. If it is exceeded, you will end up paying an over limit fee and other hefty charges.

5. Look out for promotional offers – Why pay more when you can get the same product by paying less? Be a little smart when using your plastic money and make sure that you utilize the variety of offers and promotions provided by the card issuers from time to time. These promotions can provide you with access to discounts, deals and privileges across different segments such as dining, travel, shopping and so on.

You can not only save money through these promotional offers but you can also enjoy a variety of other exclusive privileges which will enhance your experience of using a credit card. Make sure that you always visit a website where you can find information about such promotions so that you can take full advantage of them.

6. Make multiple payments in a month – Do not just limit yourself to making a single payment within the payment due date every month. Instead, try to make multiple payments even if you pay small amounts. It has been observed that the credit card issuers and the credit bureau tend to send payment reports more than once every month, if there is a lot of payment activity in an account.

When you make multiple payments you make sure that the lot of positive information about your credit card usage is being sent to the credit bureau and in the process your credit score will get a big boost. For example, if the minimum payment due for the month is S$1500, do make a payment of S$1500 and apart from that also make other amounts in the same month.

7. Avoid cash advances – You will be provided with the feature of withdrawing cash with your credit card but you should avoid utilizing this feature. When you withdraw cash with your card, you will be charged a cash advance fee and you will also not get any interest free period to make the payment.

Cash advances will increase your minimum payment due and the overall balance of your card and will make it difficult to pay off the balance in full. It can also have a very negative effect on your credit score and so it is important that you try to avoid cash advances as much as possible.

Credit Cards: Tips to Use Them Safely

There was a time when people roamed with a lot of cash in their pocket. This was because if you went shopping, the only choice was to pay by cash. But carrying cash always carried a safety threat as well. People could be robbed in the middle of the street and all that cash being accumulated by you is lost in a matter of seconds. Then came credit cards. For public that found it cumbersome to carry cash in the pocket, these cards were a boon. After all, this little innovation empowered them to buy all that they liked without bothering about the amount of cash in their wallet.

Today, credit cards are a common story. People have even equated the ownership of credit cards to be like a status symbol. However, none of this is true. We do agree that credit cards add convenience to your routine. But, at the same time, we would also recommend you to practice certain safety measures when you are using credit cards:

Always sign on the magnetic line. Most people forget to swipe their plastic card when they receive it. This results in the situation where they have been using the card for close to a decade without their signatures. Believe it or not, committing frauds using such unsigned cards is easy.

Swipe carefully: When you eat at a restaurant, don’t give the credit to your waiter for swiping it. Instead, ask for the machine to be brought on the table and swiped in front of you. With the new age portable machines, this is completely doable and minimizes the risk of being duped by the hotel staff. This rule is applicable in all transactions that you do with your credit cards.

Don’t reveal data to unknown people. If people call you and ask you for your plastic card number under the garb of making you participate in some other activity, please don’t reveal the details to them. Instead alert the legal authorities and let them handle the matter if you get such requests repeatedly.

The CVV number is secret. The CVV number is unique to your card and if it is revealed to a greater number of audience, the risk of being duped by the people also increases. Even when you are using the credit card for online shopping ensure that the transaction is facilitated by a secure and reliable payment gateway easily.

Credit Card Charge Offs and Their Impact on Your Credit Score

If you are of the opinion that paying your bills late won’t have an impact on your credit score, think again. The late payment of bills under any circumstances can tarnish your credit history. Initially (for the first 180 days),the longer the debt goes unpaid, the more it will affect your credit score. In case the unpaid credit card debt reaches a point where the lender thinks that it will be irretrievable, it will be known as a “charge off”.

A charge off enables creditors to write off the debt and claim a tax exemption. Typically, an unpaid amount is recorded as a charge off when you don’t pay the bill for at least six months. However, the tenure varies from lender to lender.

Why Avoid Charge Offs?

A charge off means that you have been delinquent in making payment on the debts that you owe. After a debt is charged off, it is no longer considered as a revolving debt. It becomes a balance that is due to be paid. If possible, it is always advisable to avoid a charge off. This is because when your account is revolving, you still have the chances to pay off the debt and bring your credit score to a good position.

Even if you pay the due amount in full, a charge off will stay on your credit report for the next seven years. This is because your past record for payments is considered as an indicator of your future behavior. In case you settle the charge off by paying an amount that is less than what you owe, both the transactions will reflect on your credit report.

Myths About Charge Offs

A myth that most people may have heard is that charge offs can be removed from your credit report. You may find it surprising to learn that your responsibility to pay off the debt does not end when it has been charged off. When your debt has been transferred to a collection agency, the contract that you signed to repay debt will stay in effect until you settle the account. An important point that you should remember when your debt is charged off, is that you may not be able to settle the payment with the original creditor, but with the company that is responsible for collection.

The Impact on Your Credit Score

Charge offs can hurt your credit score to a great extent. Whether you owe $100 or $1,000, charge offs can pose a big threat to your future investment plans. A charge off can make your credit score plunge dramatically. Like some of the other flaws in your credit report, a charge off can be a major setback in the case that you are making an effort to improve your credit score

4 Cool Tricks to Maximize Your Credit Card

Your credit card is an important tool when it comes to your finances. This is precisely the reason why you should try your best to make the most of its perks. You may not realize it, but there are a number of things that you can do to maximize your card’s use.

This article presents a couple of cool tips every cardholder needs to remember.

Make best use of your Billing Cycle

The way you pay your monthly bills is crucial to maximizing your card. For instance, if you settle your dues punctually and in full, then you will be able to avoid being charged with interest. This is probably the best way to use your card. This is because you are technically getting a free loan from your card provider.

Of course, there are still a couple of tricks you can do to step things up. Consider this: if you make a charge a day before your statement is closed, then that you will have around 20-25 days to settle that charge. However, making that same charge a day after the statement is closed will give you a total of at least 55 days to pay that charge. This is because that charge will be transferred to the next billing cycle.

Another important trick you need to remember is that some card providers actually allow their users to move back their due dates, thus extending their payment cycles. This can certainly help if you find yourself in a financial jam. However, you need to keep in mind that you won’t be able to this repeatedly.

Always ask to be reconsidered

If your initial credit card application was rejected, you should never hesitate to ask for reconsideration. There is always the possibility that your credit worthiness was not assessed correctly. Keep in mind that the process itself is not perfect, so mistakes are bound to happen.

Just give your card provider a quick call. Explain to them why you deserve to be approved for that particular card. If you are convincing enough, the person on the other end of the line might just give you that card you want.

Threaten a Chargeback

Asking for your money back from a merchant is often a futile effort. Fortunately, credit card users have a slight edge over people who pay with cash. As a credit cardholder, you are entitled to a chargeback option.

The chargeback option is an important trick all card owners need to remember. All you have to do is call the merchant, and ask to speak to a supervisor. Inform them that you want your money back. However, if your initial attempts at a refund are rejected, then tell them that you intend to ask for a chargeback from your card provider.

It is virtually guaranteed that the supervisor will change their mind once you threaten them with this. This is because a chargeback means increased merchant fees. They would rather give you back your money than be charged any additional fees.

Make the Most out your Reward Cards

As you may have already noticed, many reward cards rely on gimmicks to make you spend more. Do not fall for this trap. Overspending is the among worst things you can do with your credit card. Instead, you should try using these cards creatively. Earn reward points the smart way.

For instance, if you want to qualify for a sign up bonus, then try using your credit card to purchase gift cards. Just make sure that you will be using these in the future. That beings said, buy them from retailers that you visit often.

Business Credit Building Initial Essentials

Before you start applying for business credit, make sure you take the time to verify that all agencies, banks, and trade credit vendors have your business listed with the same Tax ID number.

Business address must be a real brick-and-mortar building, deliverable physical address cannot be a home address, cannot be a PO Box, and cannot be a UPS address. Some lenders will not approve and fund unless this criteria is met.

You must have a dedicated business phone number that is listed with 411 directory assistance, under the business name. Lenders, vendors, creditors, and even insurance providers will verify that your business is listed with 411.

You MUST use a business phone number, not a home or cell phone.You should get an 800 number and fax number. Voice over IP numbers are okay, you just can’t use a home phone or cell phone.

Credit providers will research your company on the internet and it is best if they learned everything directly from your company website. You should also have a professional email address such as.

These are super cheap and easy to setup. Not having either WILL make you look not credible.

You’ll need to contact the State, County, and City Government offices to see if there are any required licenses and permits to operate your type of business. Do not apply if you are unlicensed when you should be.

Take the time to verify that main agencies (State, IRS, Bank, and 411 national directory) have your business listed the same way and with your Exact Legal Name. Also take the time to ensure every bill you get (power bill, phone bill, landlord, etc.) has the business name listed correctly and comes to the business address.

Those accounts will then report to the business reporting agencies in 30-90 days or up to three reporting cycles.

Once reported you’ll then have a business credit profile. You’ll have a good business credit score as long as you paid your bills on time.

And you’ll have multiple tradelines.You’ll need to have five reported accounts to move on and start getting store credit, the next step in building business credit.

A vendor line of credit is when a company (vendor) extends a line of credit to your business on “Net 15, 30, 60 or 90” day terms. This means that you can purchase their products or services up to a maximum dollar amount and you have 15, 30, 60 or 90 days to pay the bill in full.

So if you’re set-up on Net 30 terms and were to purchase $300 worth of goods today, then that $300 is due within the next 30 days.

Credit Card Charge Offs and Their Impact on Your Credit Score

If you are of the opinion that paying your bills late won’t have an impact on your credit score, think again. The late payment of bills under any circumstances can tarnish your credit history. Initially (for the first 180 days),the longer the debt goes unpaid, the more it will affect your credit score. In case the unpaid credit card debt reaches a point where the lender thinks that it will be irretrievable, it will be known as a “charge off”.

A charge off enables creditors to write off the debt and claim a tax exemption. Typically, an unpaid amount is recorded as a charge off when you don’t pay the bill for at least six months. However, the tenure varies from lender to lender.

Why Avoid Charge Offs?

A charge off means that you have been delinquent in making payment on the debts that you owe. After a debt is charged off, it is no longer considered as a revolving debt. It becomes a balance that is due to be paid. If possible, it is always advisable to avoid a charge off. This is because when your account is revolving, you still have the chances to pay off the debt and bring your credit score to a good position.

Even if you pay the due amount in full, a charge off will stay on your credit report for the next seven years. This is because your past record for payments is considered as an indicator of your future behavior. In case you settle the charge off by paying an amount that is less than what you owe, both the transactions will reflect on your credit report.

Myths About Charge Offs

A myth that most people may have heard is that charge offs can be removed from your credit report. You may find it surprising to learn that your responsibility to pay off the debt does not end when it has been charged off. When your debt has been transferred to a collection agency, the contract that you signed to repay debt will stay in effect until you settle the account. An important point that you should remember when your debt is charged off, is that you may not be able to settle the payment with the original creditor, but with the company that is responsible for collection.

The Impact on Your Credit Score

Charge offs can hurt your credit score to a great extent. Whether you owe $100 or $1,000, charge offs can pose a big threat to your future investment plans. A charge off can make your credit score plunge dramatically. Like some of the other flaws in your credit report, a charge off can be a major setback in the case that you are making an effort to improve your credit score.

Can You Get Your Credit Card Interest Rate Down?

Interestingly, yes you can. In America for instance, people are encouraged to negotiate with their Credit Card Company and the reason is very simple. The people who own these cards love money. Especially if they have loaned it via a Credit Card and now they see there is no way they are going to get it back unless they play ball to some extent with potential bankrupts. If you go declare bankruptcy then there is a big chance they will never see any of that money again.

In their anger, they may decide to slam you with a black mark which will limit you severely in what types of cards you may be able to apply for later on, when you get out of the bankruptcy. The time that black mark will exist may range from a few years to never being able to get a credit card from anywhere again. Scarey stuff, right? And unfortunately it is not just the current manager who can keep the ban going. Once you are in the system, you are stuck there.

So it makes a lot of sense to try to come to an arrangement with the Credit Card Company you have your card with. If nothing else, which is rare indeed, it will at least take some stress of you for a moment or two. These people are human, the same as you. And may also have had the same problems as you. It is wise to remember this. The nerves settle immediately. Just don’t take the tone that you know they have been in your boat.

Check the back of your credit card. There you should find the information you need to contact the company. But before you do that, have some bargaining power with you. If you have a lot of credit cards, you probably have offers from those companies for interest rates. Find the ones that are lower than the one you are bargaining with and have them ready to quote. Then phone the company and get ready to talk.

When you get through, ask for the supervisor of the credit card division. You’ll probably be fobbed off onto a million call buttons, but stick to your guns. Press all these buttons if you have to, but eventually you should end up with the supervisor. This is not just being a large pain in the neck. The supervisor can do a lot more for you than a customer service rep is allowed to do. They are much further up the food chain usually, so these are the people you really need to speak to.

Explain your problem and tell them what you are looking for, which is a decrease in the interest rate on your card. If they are quite happy to discuss it, keep your other offers hidden unless you really need to produce them. If the rate you are offered is not very close to, or is, zero rate, then make it plain you have these offers for zero interest elsewhere and you will be quite prepared to shift your balances elsewhere if it is not possible to match these offers. But make it gentle at first.

Of course, their generosity will be matched against your credit card debt and your credit card repayment history. If you have a lousy repayment history, you may not be able to get the level of interest down to zero. But anything is going to be better than nothing and at least the company will believe you are going to play fair with them, so they will see they are going to get some of their money back.

4 Tips To Easily Earn Credit Card Reward Points

Credit cards are well-known for giving their users a number of useful rewards. Unfortunately, many cardholders still think that overspending is necessary in order to qualify for these rewards. This is another myth that is simply not true.

Anyone can make the most out of their rewards card. You just have to follow a set of rules. You won’t even have to go over your budget. This article presents a couple of easy tips to help you do just that.

Choose the Right Card

It is of paramount importance that your rewards card should be perfectly suited to your spending habits. After all, your lifestyle dictates the way you use your card. Of course, this is easier said than done.

There are a number of different factors that go into the selection process. You should also take the different card categories into consideration. For instance, should you get a student card or a business credit card? These card types were made with specific demographics in mind.

Ultimately, you need to make sure that you weigh your choices carefully so that you end up with the best one.

Settle Routine Expenses with your Credit Card

Many newbie cardholders try to inflate their total spending in order to earn additional reward points. It is important to state here that this is the wrong method. Overspending is never the way. It will only lead to financial ruin and excessive credit card debt.

Instead, you need to start paying for your recurring expenses with your card. Keep in mind that everything you need can be easily charged to your credit card. This would include your groceries, rent, and utilities. This is probably the best way to earn reward points since you won’t need to go over your monthly budget. Just make sure that you settle your statement in full at the end of the month.

Use Your Card to Settle Other Outstanding Debts

Most of us have debt. This can be in the form of student loans, mortgage, car financing, and insurance. You may not realize it, but you can also use your credit card to pay for these. This may seem like a bad idea, but the concept behind it is very similar to paying your recurring expenses with a credit card. You have to pay for these things monthly anyway, so why not do it in the most efficient way possible?

As you pay for your outstanding debt with your card, you will also be able to earn reward points, even cashback. Nothing could go wrong just as long as you settle your bills on time.

Use Your Card To Make Large Purchases

Let us be clear: you shouldn’t make large purchases just to earn rewards. However, if you were already planning to spend money then try using your card to make these purchases. This will be like hitting two birds with one stone. Not only will you be getting the items you wanted, but you will also be adding reward points.

Aside from this, you will be also be able to maximize the benefits that come with using your credit card. This would include fraud protection as well as an extended warranty service.

Maximizing your reward card is the right financial move. As illustrated above, you can earn reward points without having to overspend. You will still be able to follow your monthly budget. The tips presented above are simple enough for anyone to follow. Just make sure that you always keep them in mind.