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Tax Basics For Startup Home Businesses

I do not claim to be an accountant, nor very well versed in the art of creative tax preparation, but I do have a bit of experience in handling the day to day and month to month taxes. For the past five years, I have learned first and foremost that the most important thing in business is to keep accurate records for tax purposes.

I always dread the end of each physical year when it's time to do the annual tax returns. It can be quite overwhelming for a beginner, but do not be scared … the IRS is very helpful in getting you on the right track and providing information to help you get through all the forms with a minimum of hair loss.

If you will be generating an income from your business, (which is your whole purpose right?) You will need a federal tax ID number so the tax guys can associate your business to your name. This does not sound like much fun, but believe me, it's better to do it right the first time around than to have to deal with them after they discover that you have been running a business and not claiming your income on your taxes.

You can get all the IRS publications on how to get your Federal Employers Identification Number (FEIN) from irs.ustreas.gov which will also provide you with a wealth of information regarding business startups, record keeping and and tax information.

You will need to get a state sales tax identification number. This number is to identify you and help you keep track of your sales tax. You will need to charge a sales tax on tangible items that you sell. Sales taxes are based on your geographical location, so you will need to know what your state sales tax rates are and what the policies are for your particular state on sales tax and taxes on services. You can contact your local tax agency for assistance.

There are significant tax savings for those who are running a home based business. You are entitled to certain credits, payments and allowances. In order to claim these savings, you must first and foremost keep accurate records of the daily workings of your business.

Since you will be "self-employed", you will be responsible for paying your own income tax, social security and medicare as well as any employee taxes if you have any employees. Property tax and sales tax are also your responsibility to report and pay them in a timely manner. Failure to do so could result in some pretty stiff fines.

The IRS provides publications which are very helpful for starting a home based business. It would be a good idea for you to call your local IRS office and request their business startup package. They are more than happy to send you anything you need to start your business off on the right foot when it comes to taxes. I personally recommend the following booklets along with the startup publication:

Tax Guide for Small Business (Publication 334)

Business Use of Your Home (Publication 587)

Self-employment Tax (Publication 533)

Tax Withholding and Estimated Tax (Publication 505)

These booklets will provide you with all the necessary details to get you started. It will also contain a list of other publications that you may find useful and will guide you through the necessary steps for getting right with the IRS.

Every transaction your business makes, will have an effect on your taxes. You make a sale, you will owe sales tax in most cases. This tax is reported monthly on a form ST-1 which will automatically be delivered to you prior to the end of each month once you have established your state sales tax ID number. You will also need to check into industry specific taxes. For instance, I have to file a quarterly ST-8 for my husband's business, which is a Tire Tax form in which we must collect and pay a "use tax" for any tires that are sold.

Home based businesses also have certain tax advantages. You may be eligible for debts such as a portion of your mortgage interest, auto expenses, phone expenses and depreciation for equipment such as your computer. Other tax deductions are for items such as certain membership fees related to your business, postage, software used for your business and copying and reproduction costs such as business cards and flyers.

Dealing with business taxes can be very intimidating if you've never done it before but it does not have to be. Most tax agencies are very helpful in answering your questions and helping you get the proper forms. If you make a mistake in your tax forms, do not worry – the tax agencies will find the mistake and correct it, but it's best to make sure you get it done right to save any penalties caused if mistakes are found by the tax Guys.

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It’s All About The Traffic Stupid!

How many times have you bought a product that promises you that you will earn thousands of dollars if you use their system to build sites only to find that the manual contains not one word about generating traffic? You buy the product and build the site and it just sits there doing nothing.

I don’t care how great a product is if it doesn’t show you how to generate good quality traffic then it’s almost worthless. If I was starting out again I wouldn’t spend money on any tools or e-books until I had mastered the art of traffic generation, and it really is an art of getting traffic to a site.

You can have the best looking site in the world, with the perfect keywords but if you don’t know how to firstly attract the search engine spiders and then real human visitors then the site is going to have no value. Try selling a website and the first thing you will be asked is “What is the Income & what’s the traffic”

The income is not particularly important. If I am buying a site I actually want the income to be as low as possible as it will be cheaper for me. Given a choice of a site with an income of $100 a month and 1000 visitors or a site with $10 per months and 2000 Visitors I’ll always go for the visitors.

Take time to develop your own traffic delivery system and you’ll have one less thing to worry about. Take time to find out what works and what doesn’t. I created a video for my members yesterday about how to get a site indexed and start generating traffic and I found something that got a new site into Google in less than 18 hours.

This was something new that I hadn’t used before needless to say I was pretty impressed. I used it on another site 3 hours ago and guess what? It’s now showing in Google. That’s 3 hours from creating an entry to it appearing in Google. I didn’t even know that updated their database that often!

I’ve read lots of books on traffic generation and not one of them has mentioned this service. This is not surprising as the reason for this is that the internet is changing on an almost daily basis what worked great last month doesn’t work as well this month. Take Squidoo for example, it used to be the best way to get a site indexed but not anymore.

The easiest way to find the services that work is by seeing what ranks well in Google. Personally I will focus on internet marketing terms as marketers tend to be ahead of the pack on most things related to site promotion. I’ll then locate what services they are using to get links back to their sites and then test them on my new sites. If they work the get added to my spreadsheet and then used until something more effective comes along.

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The Advantages and Disadvantages of International Money Transfer Online Services

Advantages and disadvantages are attached to everything on the planet Earth. As far as money sending concerns; Despite the advances in IT have made it possible to send money online in minutes, yet the dark side of the picture can not be overlooked along with appreciating the bright aspects. At first, let us take a view of the advantages of international money transfer online services:

  • The first and the most prominent benefit we get from these services is the rapidity. Gone are the days when people had to wait for weeks for transaction of money. At present, you can transfer money online from one place to another in minutes.
  • Various banks have featured power transfer, which enables you to track the money online wherever you are a recipient or a sender of that money.
  • Lots of banks have featured remittance. With the help of this feature, you can receive money in your local currency and use right after you receive it.
  • Another benefit is that you can send money directly to bank accounts via online banking now-a-days.
  • Online money transfer services have provided a platform to online business-groups where they can move fast and grow quickly without wasting time in the formalities of sending money offline like waiting for the checks to clear.

Having walked through the advantages which online money transaction offers, now let us turn to the disadvantages it bears.

  • The weightiest disadvantage is the transfer fee taken by international money transfer online services. You must have to pay some fee to them, otherwise it is impossible to utilize the services.
  • Sometimes involvement of credit card and debit card in online money transfer leads to losses. In other words, you money is not hundred percent secure in process.
  • Some websites are used to keep money temporarily in case money is not sent directly to bank account. The user passwords for these websites can be hacked by hackers resulting in the loss of money.
  • When you send money online, you have to face the technical difficulties of the process.
  • You have to be patient because long queues are quiet usual in online money transaction.
  • The quick transaction in debit cards causes difficulties in recovering lost funds.

By and large, online money transfer services are either from heaven nor from hell. In spite of all their advantages, lots of people more than offline offline money transaction. And in spite of all their disadvantages, a huge percentage of the world population utilizes international money transfer online services on regular bases.

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Eliminate Interior Home Disasters

Hello and welcome to my design thoughts.

With thousands of websites, articles, newsletters and blogs on interior design, is it any wonder home design is confusing? As an artist and designer, it never ceases to amaze me the amount of fabulous information available for the curious and motivated homeowner. And Free to boot!

Keeping it simple is a little more difficult. I have visited many "designers" client homes, just to see the designers particular brand or style stamped all over the place. How do we keep our homes in the realm of our own personalities?

When you are searching for a design and or designer, first look at their product. Talk to past clients. Visualize the designers work in your private space. Does it work? Or could you have done a better job on your own and a whole lot less expensive?

I have designed many different styles. Each as individual as the client themselves. How is this done? First, you have to do the homework. A client who states: Do whatever you like, I trust you and I will be back from Bermuda in six weeks "might be a client I may choose to steer clear of.

I will not brand my personal style on a clients home. Your home should and must reflect your personality and uniqueness. With excitement and motivation, create something totally yours, you can learn how to build a really stunning environment all your own.

Magazines, websites other design information can be your very best friend. You have done it before, I just can see both of us searching magazines, ripping out the cool stuff and making piles … This is your start to discovering your personal style.

Build a book on these pictures. Study each picture. Circle the idea or picture which done your eye. Put you piles of pictures in categories. Ie living, bath, family, kitchen. Then go back and cull out the pictures which may not be as appealing. Only keep the very best. You will ever discover what you love, whether in color, shape, size or style name. My personal style is called European Recycled … No joke.

Keep your first trial and run simple. Paint is the least expensive re-do and has an amazing impact. A fresh coat of paint is magic. Interior design can be a simple act of re-arranging or de-cluttering.

Find your magic. Love where you live. Make it a peaceful and creative environment all your own.

SK Sartell

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A Review of Forex Autopiolot For New Traders

An overview of one of the most powerful trading robots is the goal of this review of Forex Autopilot. This review is geared for those of you who are new to the trading environment and need to know that there are options available to assist you in making as much money as possible. No one can guarantee the amount of money that can be made from trading. However, substantial gains have been reported from this system by several people. New traders will benefit from a little knowledge of Forex Trading. By knowing the process, you can see how the software can help in automating your trading business.

The Industry classifies Forex Autopilot as an EA or Expert Advisor. The reason behind this is because the people who created this program have built into it the many years of trading experience that they have earned which makes it more than a simple piece of written code. The trading robot is automatic. The software precedes the trades that have the best chance of success by drawing on the industry experience of the creators encoded into the program.

The program is affordable and well within reach of the average trader with some very sophisticated features included. While it is good to have knowledge of the trading process, you do not need to have an extensive knowledge of the software. You can easily execute the trades because the software does all the analysis for you.

Your own trading research juxtaposed with the results from the software will help you appreciate the benefits that are associated with the software. It is important to remember that industry knowledge that has been associated with trial and error is the basis of success. Based on this alone there is a reason to look into the product. You can do other important and meaningful things in the spare time that is generated and saved for you by use of this software.

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How a Betting Line is Made

Many people think that the point spreads show what oddsmakers believe are the numbers of points a favorite will win by. However, this is not the case. The goal of a point spread is to attract an equal amount of bets on either side. Oddsmakers want to create numbers that will cause half of people to place bets on one side while the other half bet the other side. This is called dividing the action, which means the sportsbook or bookmaker is guaranteed to receive a profit on the bet no matter which side wins.

An opening line is the first line that oddsmakers create and send out to online sportsbook companies, casinos and bookmakers. The opening line is created from a power rating based on the value of each team. These power ratings are used to calculate a preliminary point spread for the next game. Whenever a team finishes a game, the power ratings are adjusted. Other non-game factors such as player injuries and trades will also cause the power ratings to become adjusted.

After a point spread is determined based on the power rating then the line is adjusted once the most recent games are reviewed. Adjustments can also be made based on what a newspaper prints about a coach or players thoughts at the start of a game.

Since the purpose of a betting line is to divide the action, the oddsmakers also take into account what the public thinks of the team and current betting patterns. After the opening line is released by the oddsmakers then the individual bookmakers or sportsbook company can decide to adjust the line before they post it for their players to view. This is to divide the action more evenly.

After betting has started, the line can change at any time. By doing this the sportsbook can make a team look more attractive so they will get more action. This also allows them to influence the way the public bets on a certain game.

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Great Tips For Maintaining A Luxury Car

It is no doubt that luxury cars are expensive. In fact, even its maintenance cost is expensive. However, you must know that there are tips on how to prolong such car’s life and value. Car experts have shared some excellent tips for maintaining a luxury car. If you have invested in a luxury car, be sure to know such tips.

Maintenance Tips For Luxury Cars

Clean the dashboard and steering wheel – Luxury cars that are being offered these days usually have steering wheels made of leather and wood. When it comes to cleaning the leather on the steering wheel, you have to use similar leather cleaner and conditioner that you use on your car’s seats. If you do not have an idea on what cleaning substance to use, it is advisable that you go to the car dealer where you bought your car and ask for recommendations. Be reminded that using the right cleaning materials is very important to prolong the life of your car.

Clean the seats – In order to make sure that debris, dirt and other materials will not pressed into the car seats, it is very crucial that you clean up spills as soon as they happen. Investing in portable vacuum is a smart choice since you can use it whenever the seats get dirty. If the seat of your car is made of fabric, consider using a damp cloth. But if it is made of leather, you must use a special cleaner and conditioner recommended by your car dealer.

Always check the air filter – The car air filters will allow the engine to breathe, which enables it to last longer. Be reminded that a clogged filter will not allow the engine to function properly. With this, it is very important that you have to change the car’s fluid as well as oil filter regularly.

Maintain the right tire pressure – This will not just ensure safety, but will likewise boost the mileage and performance of your car. It is very important that you must check the thread of the tire to ensure that it will have an efficient gripping while on the road.

Check the gauges – You must know that the gauges on your car will inform you about the problems associated with tire pressure, cooling system, seat belts, oil pressure and more. Thus, it is very crucial that all gauges of your car are maintained properly and checked regularly for operation.

As the car owner, always bear in mind that making your car last longer as well as maintaining its value is in your hands. So it is wise for you to be aware of how to properly maintain your car. To learn more info about this, check out this site.

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Web Design – 3 Reasons You Should Hire a Designer

Many online businesses start with little or no start-up capital. For this reason, many business owners opt to do all of the work themselves, including the creation of a product or service, creating a marketing plan, and the design and implementation of their company website. As the company business begins to grow, often time, the self developed website solution becomes too small to handle the expanding needs of the company. This can cause the business to halt all growth and sales several days to redesign the company website for increased growth.

If this sounds familiar to you, you may have started your company with very little start-up capital, and you may be hesitant to give your hard earned money to others for something you think can be done yourself! However, there are three reasons you should hire a web designer to save you not only time and money, but also heartache and frustration.

1. Saves Time to Run Your Business: By letting a web designer do a specific assigned job for you, you are not simply handing over the “dirty work” to the web designer. Actually, by paying the designer, you will eliminate all of the worry and frequent annoyances that often appear when trying to design your own website. This will allow you more time to focus on your business and the day to day operations of your company.

2. Quick Fix Problems: By hiring a designer, you are hiring professionals that are skilled at what they do. When you outsource your web design jobs, you will not have to be concerned with the issues that may arise, you can simply contact the designer to fix the problem. The designer will be able to quickly assess the problem and provide a quicker solution than you will probably be able to assess.

3. Professionalism: Surely, the designer you hire has been doing their job for a longer length of time than you. By hiring a web designer, you will have a more professional and polished finished product. Web designers do their jobs for a living, so they have to be superior at what they do!

Hiring a designer can be one the smartest business decisions you will ever make. Don’t trust just anyone to make your vision a reality. Hire a web designer that cares and one that can help your company have the professional image it deserves.

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The Five Key Steps to Naming an Internet Business

Naming an Internet based business or start-up can be a daunting task. Do you follow the zany likes of Google and Yahoo, or do you go the more literal route of Hotels.com and Cars.com? Do you need to have the exact matching domain name as your brick-and-mortar business? And just how important is the.com vs. the.net? With so many choices to make and directions to go, let’s start with the basics.

1. Decide if you are building a business or a brand.

I mention this since many online entrepreneurs are focused on short-term goals. They want to get their site up fast, get ranked high and start making money. This all sounds good but it leaves a business vulnerable in a number of ways. Short term thinking usually leads to literal names that will (supposedly) rank well with the search engines. In addition, literal/functional names are thought to better inform visitors about what products and services are provided.

While descriptive names do convey a sense of what you do, they fall short in creating an identity, a sense of how you do what you do. So you end up in a sea of sound-alike companies. LendingTree.com (a metaphor) is much more memorable than e-loan.com, loansfast.com or loan-place.com. Amazon.com (another metaphor) brings richer imagery to mind than BooksAMillion.com.

Unless you own a primary domain name with a lot of natural type-in traffic, descriptive names usually fall flat in the long run. You may make a decent living, but it would be difficult to grow a long lasting company called MensDressShoes.com. It would always sound generic and descriptive and would rely heavily on the ever-changing algorithms of the search engines. Most descriptive names rely on web surfers typing the search term into the web address box as a.com, hoping to find a relevant company. But what if this changes and consumers turn more and more to using search engines? What if the search engines change their valuation of having keywords in the domain name? You have then built a company that relies on the unpredictable nature of Internet search engines to make you profitable.

Having said all that, even if you wanted a generic short word, it’s probably now beyond most businesses’ price range. Diamonds.com recently sold for 7.5 million dollars. Best advice — build a brand name and then point generic/descriptive names to the main website address.

2. Come up with a naming strategy.

Go to a directory such as Yahoo.com or dmoz.org and look up competitors in your field. Examine the most common naming methods they use (i.e. proper names, key attributes, metaphors, etc.). If you discover your industry heavily utilizes one form of naming, avoid it and use another. If half of the companies are using the evocative theme of discovery (i.e. Internet Explorer, Netscape, Safari, etc.), then try something different such as an analogy (i.e. Firefox). Map out a list of your competitors’ names and see how your names compare against them. Consider such naming techniques as:

” Focusing on a key attribute (Priceline.com)

” Focusing on a key attribute (Priceline.com)

” Adding a suffix (Travelocity.com)

” Creating an invented name (Expedia.com)

” Utilizing an evocative word (Orbitz.com)

” Mixing words in new combinations (HotWire.com)

The more strategies you employ, the more naming options you will have at your disposal. Be careful of misspelled names since they will create one more obstacle when it comes to finding your domain name. Some companies can manage this because they have large budgets (i.e. Cingular.com); but as much as possible, focus on names that can be clearly stated, understood and spelled.

3. Search to see if the names on your list are available.

A great place to start is DomainTools.com. They will not only allow you to look up a domain name to see if it’s available, but they also have a link for domain suggestions when the desired domain in not available. While these suggestions are not always the most creative, they may spark some additional ideas. Plus they show related names that are for sale or at auction on other sites. Another good site is BuyDomains.com. Unlike DomainTools.com, which simply lists whether domains are available or not, BuyDomains.com actually owns its own inventory of over 675,000 names. They will not be available for the $6.95 that GoDaddy.com would charge for an unregistered name, but they do have a good supply of names for between $2,000 to $4,000. Considering the importance of a good domain name, this is relatively inexpensive. In addition to BuyDomains.com, there are sites such as Afternic.com and Sedo.com that also offer a wide selection of domain names, many of which are searchable by category.

You can also broaden your opportunities by adding a good prefix or suffix. Avoid the trite “online” or “cyber” endings. In the case of my naming company, I added the intensifier “Pure to the light bulb filament “Tungsten” to form the domain name PureTungsten.com. Other prefixes and suffixes include “My,” “Go,” “Now,” and “USA.”

4. If you can’t get the.com, then move on.

Starting a new business has enough challenges already. So why add to it by starting with the.net version of your name? I’ve had a number of naming clients come to me with this issue. What they thought would be no big deal turned out to be very painful. Consumers default to the.com address; and without it, you will be constantly reminding customers to use the.net or.info or.us extension. To further compound the issue, many important and sensitive emails will end up going to the.com address. Imagine if a competitive company then buys the.com? You would now have a sticky situation. Avoid it by getting the.com first and foremost.

This is also true of the infamous hyphen. Most people will type a name without the hyphen. So unless you want to constantly explain it, don’t rely on customers to assume your name has a hyphen. If you have a number in your name, try to get both the spelled out number and the actual number. If you must chose one over the other, go with the spelled out name since names generally contain letters vs. numbers (i.e. CapitalOne.com).

5. Be sure to register all the possible typos and misspellings.

Think of all the possible ways your new name could be misspelled (hopefully none if you’ve done your work!). Then register these names. This will prevent domain squatters and link farms from selling your traffic to your competitors. Since consumers default to the.com name, it’s more important that you get common misspellings than it is to get the.net.

As with any name, you would be wise to check the Uspto.gov database to see if there are any companies in your goods and services category utilizing the same or similar name. If that looks clear, you will still need to file a trademark application, which you can do online, or hire a good trademark attorney.

This completes your crash course on naming an Internet based business. If the task becomes overwhelming, you can hire a naming firm; but be prepared to pay $7,500 to $75,000 to get a good name, tag line, matching domain name and artwork. If you follow the above guidelines, you should be able to keep yourself from making any major missteps and be on your way to online success. And in both the short run and long run, that’s the name of the game!

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Government Grants – Use a Debt Free Government Grant to Get Your Free Money

Government Grants are one of the best ways that you can pay off your credit card bills and get a fresh start. We all hate to open out mail and see that we have another credit card bill that we do not have enough money to pay. We all have used our credit cards more than we should and with a tough economy it makes it hard not to. Getting a free Government Grant is your answer to paying off your credit card bills and basically starting over. You do not have to feel like there is no answer to your debt so you just sit back and do nothing.

People are finding out that they can now get free grant money so they can get out form under the debt that they have. You do not have to be stressed out anymore and lose sleep over how to pay off your debt. Take advantage of the opportunity that is available to you so that you can get your debt paid and you will be on the road to a better financial future. Never feel bad if you have spent more than you could afford with your credit card debt because this is very common. You need to know take full advantage of getting your debt paid off today.

Remember that getting out of debt is your number one priority and using a government grant can be your best bet. It is not important why you got into debt it is only important on how to get out of debt and using a free money grant is your best option to do that.

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