Month: September 2015

18 Sep 2015

5 Ways to Not Lose Your Panties in Real Estate

Lots of women want to get involved in real estate, but there’s one big thing holding them back – fear! They’re terrified of losing their panties if they invest.

If you’re one of those women who is resisting jumping into the real estate game because of fear of losing money, don’t worry. We’re here to share with you 5 ways NOT to lose your panties in real estate.

 

  1. Be Clear about your Desires

This is a big one. It’s really important that you understand what desires you want to gain from real estate. This will help steer you in the perfect direction for an investment that’s right for you.

Some things to think about:

-Do you desire to invest for cash flow so you can have passive income right now?

-Do you desire to increase your money available for retirement (you don’t need to access the money for many years)?

-Do you desire to invest to lower your tax burdens?

-Do you desire to leave a legacy for your children?

There are many reasons why you may want to invest, so why do you desire to invest?

Why is it important to know your DESIRES before you invest?

Let’s say you desire to invest in something that gives you cash flow right away and will give you back all of your initial investment within 2-3 years. If you tie up your money in a real estate development that doesn’t cash flow and won’t make money for 5 to 10 years, that’s a bad investment for you. If you pull your money out earlier than the investment requires, you’ll lose money.

The more clear you can get about why you want to invest and what benefits you desire, the less likely you’ll be to invest in a property that’s a mismatch and where you’ll lose your panties.

  1. Be Resourceful

The main resources you need to invest in real estate are time, money, and experience.

You need time to find and manage your investment property.

You need money to purchase it, renovate it (as needed), and maintain it.

Lastly you need experience to find the right property and manage it effectively.

Get very clear on how much of each you personally have.

 

You can ask yourself questions like:

-How much time can I put into finding and managing a property?

-How much property management do I personally want to do?

-How much renovation am I willing to take on?

-How much money do I have to invest and how much debt are I comfortable with?

-How much experience do you I in finding, financing, renovating, and/or managing a property?

 

All these questions will help you figure out what kind of investment will work for you.

Many people lose money in real estate because they don’t dedicate enough money, time, or requisite experience for the investment property they have chosen.

The good news is if you’re lacking in any of these areas, you can partner with other people that have the time, money, and/or experience you are seeking.

A real estate investor goddess knows she doesn’t need to personally have all the resources at hand, she just needs to be resourceful enough to partner with others who do.

 

  1. Have a great team.

Successful real estate investors know that this is a team sport. You want the greatest team members as possible around you.

Who are some of the team members you need? Brokers, property managers, lenders, accountants, and more.

Your team will be big part of the resources that you rely upon. You can leverage their time, experience, and in some cases their money (e.g., lenders or investment partners), to get you successfully invested in a property.

 

  1. Know Your Market.

Many investors fail because they buy in the wrong market or sub market.

Successful investors buy in areas where people want or need to be – areas with strong job and population growth.

They also buy where they and/or their partners team members are very knowledgable and familiar. The difference between a successful investment and a failed investment can be as little as one city block.

To not lose your panties make sure you know your market well and/or have trusted team member(s) who do.

 

  1. Buy the Right Property

Last, but not least, you can avoid losing your panties in real estate by buying the right property.

What’s the right property? It depends upon your clear DESIRES. The right property will deliver the benefits YOU desire.

If you want to buy a property that will provide you cash flow and will appreciate in value, then you should look for a property that:

(a) cash flows from day 1. In other words, from the beginning after you pay all expenses you still have income; and

(b) has value-added potential. A good property is one that is an ugly duckling – it could use some sprucing, but isn’t in such bad shape that fixing it up will take all the profits.

A great ugly duckling could have good plumbing, electrical, foundations and roof, but have outdated apartments. If you give the apartments a new paint job, new flooring, and some new appliances tenants the tenants will pay more rent. You’ll have added to the income and therefore the value of the property.

You can also find value-add potential through a property that hasn’t been managed properly.

By putting in better management you can: find ways to bring in new income streams, find ways to decrease costs, and have happier tenants.

All this adds value to your property and increases the bottom line.

 

Those are 5 ways to get into real estate investment without losing your panties. If you follow these 5 steps you will not only get to keep your panties, you’ll have enough to get yourself a whole new wardrobe … or 10. 🙂

WANT TO KNOW MORE?

To find out more information about:

-the different benefits of real estate,

-all the team members you need on your team,

-how to pick the right market for you, and

-how to choose the right property

register for our 75 minute – How to Get Started in Real Estate Investing Like a Goddess” webinar.

Also request an invitation to our private Real Estate Investor Goddess community – where we help women pleasurably build massive wealth through investing in real estate. Click here to get started.  

18 Sep 2015

What Makes A Financial Website Successful?

At one time, the internet appeared to offer all organisations a simple proposition: email connectivity and a clickable presence in the form of a website. Today, web presence has rapidly evolved with interactive content and the ability to deliver transactional experiences – or e-commerce. Migrating services online helps business reduce costs, while customers benefit from the convenience and autonomy of self-service.

Financial services are faced with the challenge of delivering their customers with an online experience that goes far beyond just a website.

Financial services sites are absolutely competitive. They are really trying to drive people online. The self-service model is being taken seriously so they want to make sure their sites are available, responsive and allow users to do as many things as possible.

Though, many have shown an overall poor performance. The top reasons for failure were as follows: company websites make browsing too difficult; content missing, repeated and

poorly worded; and site search doesn’t work for typical tasks.

Here are three factors for a successful online financial service site which keeps users engaged and displays great use of technology while still delivers company’s messages clearly and effectively:

  • Customer experience, which includes the impression the homepage and overall design style give the customers, their satisfaction when they interact with the site and perform tasks.
  • Best practices, such as ease of use, quality, availability and security – site managers must be compliant with data laws requiring them to protect customer information and the integrity of customer accounts.
  • Service-level, which looks at responsiveness and reliability of websites – scores them on how quickly they respond to user commands and such factors as average downtime.

Financial services must tie these three factors together – customer experience, best practices and reliability/responsiveness – to have an effective web presence. They can’t go hard into one particular area and ignore the others. They have to understand what’s available versus their competitors, what consumers think of their sites versus competitors’ and how their sites are performing.

09 Sep 2015

Money Mindset For Real Estate Investors

The most important factor for making, having, and growing money in real estate or otherwise has nothing to do with techniques or know-how. Your money mindset has the biggest influence on your finances. In other words, how you think about money is the biggest determinant of how you create and treat the money you have.

The money lessons that you receive as a child often dictate your money mindset (for better or for ill).

The lessons I learned from my parents around money were: Money is very stressful to deal with. If you have a good job, you’ll be fine. That’s all you need to know about money Money is for spending, and so are credit cards. I never heard mention of saving or investing.

So I worked hard and went to great schools and got a very high-paying job as a law firm lawyer. I made lots of money, but because I believed that “money was so stressful to deal with” I avoided dealing with it. I left my mail unopened and typically would not pay a bill until I received notice of a late fee. Despite my nice six-figure salary, I managed to spend every penny and then some. I was living paycheck to paycheck and carried debt. My financial life was a mess.

At one point I spent $600 on a financial planner to help me get organized. He made me a binder with lots of beautiful and colorful charts showing where my money was currently going and where it would go if I started saving and investing. He did nothing to work on my mindset. This binder collected dust in my office. With my mindset as it was, I could not stick to my budget or manage to pay my bills on time.

When I got engaged to my now husband I decided that I didn’t want to bring my financial issues into our marriage. Money problems are one of the main killers of marriages and I knew my money habits were a problem.

So, I started to study and take courses in finances. I got many skills, but still could not get myself to follow through on what I now knew I “should” be doing. It was only when I got pregnant with my daughter and studied to become a money mastery coach, that I realized that I had to deal with my mindset. The work I have done has shifted things tremendously for me:

I went from being $60,000 in debt to having six figures in the bank.

I started investing – especially in real estate – and now make most of my money passively. While I sleep money comes to me.

I no longer work as an attorney (a job where I was miserable). I absolutely adore the work I now get to do investing in and rehabbing real estate and helping others to do the same.

My mindset changes and my ensuing fortunes have enabled me to spend lots more time with my family and to travel generally 8 weeks per year around the world.

It has also allowed me to contribute a lot more to charity.

I have more peace and ease around finances, and I’m much happier.

I’m not sharing this to brag (though goddesses understand the power of bragging and celebrating their good fortune and wins), I’m sharing this to show you what’s possible for you when you change your money mindset.

Now I want to share with you 5 things I learned that you can do today to create a more prosperous money mindset.

  1. Recognize and challenge your limiting beliefs about money: Take a minute and close your eyes. What phrases come to mind when you think about money. What did you learn as a child about money? Write these beliefs down in your journal. Some of the things you wrote down may have been “money is the root of all evil”, “Money doesn’t grow on trees”, “Money cannot buy happiness”, and “Time is money”. These are probably the most common. Is this how you think about money? If so, you are limiting your ability to easily receive money and to have a more positive experience with money. Know that the beliefs you wrote down are not necessarily true. Be willing to challenge and relief beliefs that do not seem to be serving you.

  2. Visualize yourself in a most abundant life: Your brain thinks in pictures; it doesn’t know the difference between imagined thoughts and what you are seeing. The same parts of your brain light up when you are imagining as when you are actually seeing/experiencing something. When it sees it, it will work to make it come true. Visualize yourself with $1 billion. What will you do with it? How would it feel? Get into the feeling place of it being done. Really put yourself in the shoes of your billionaire self. How would this person look, feel and think? What advice would your billionaire self give you? If any anxieties come up when you think about this amount of money – go back to Step 1. Those are your limiting beliefs showing up.

  3. Pay attention to your money in a pleasureable way, and make that time of interaction an honored and sacred interaction. Have a weekly money date (or more if you’re called to). Start by keeping your receipts in your wallet along with a few index cards. Once a week (or more if you are a big spender 🙂 set aside 5 minutes. Find a quiet place. Light some candles and incense. Pour a cup of your favorite tea or a decadent hot chocolate. Take some deep breaths, relax, and then list out on an index card everything you spent your money on this week. Next take your bills and pay with love, joy and gratitude. Be grateful that your creditors trust you to pay. I write as I pay or receive any money “This money is but a symbol of the inexhaustible supply of the Universe. I give thanks that 10x10x that much is now on its way to me and manifests quickly in perfect ways. Any interaction with money (receiving or spending) is an ability to grow more abundant in your mindset. Pay attention to your money in a pleasureable way, and make that time of interaction an honored and sacred space. Afford money the love and respect that it deserves, and it will love you back.

  4. Rejoice in others’ good fortune . If you think of wealthy people as THEM or you see someone have something you want and are jealous, then you are blocking money from coming to you the way you want. If you find that someone has something you want (material or otherwise), say “Hurray! This is showing up in my experience because it’s coming for me too!” This is an abundant and limitless universe, no one can take your good. Our Universe is not a pie with limited pieces. When we receive, the pie gets bigger. There is no lack of resources, just lack of resourcefulness. When someone else receives, look at the ways in which they are being resourceful to do so. You will learn from them and open yourself up to more.

  5. Recognize your prosperity/be grateful we so often focus on what we lack that we fail to take note of how much we already have. What you appreciate and focus on, appreciates. I engage in a nightly gratitude list. Focus on what you have to be grateful for monetarily (from that penny you found on the street to your job to the money in your savings account). Also, be grateful for all the things you have that money can’t buy. I for one and going to write down tonight that I’m so grateful for you and that I was able to share this information with this amazing audience of moms.

 

09 Sep 2015

How To Choose The Best Theme For My Business?

Building a beautiful website for your business begins with choosing a theme — a design that controls page layout, widget areas, and default style. Selecting Polygon for your business website can feel overwhelming, but you can make it easier by focusing on these three questions.

What Am I Publishing on My Website?
Draft a visual map of your website to help you plan your site structure and decide what you want your homepage to look like. Will your homepage contain static information about your business like a welcome message and business hours or do you want to showcase your latest blog content?

What Features Do I Need?
Are you building a restaurant website, a landing page for your hotel, a corporate blog, or something completely different? Depending on your business, you may need website features exclusive to certain themes.

What Look and Feel Do I Want for My Website?
You can filter themes by style and color if you have a specific look in mind or need to match a brand logo. While most themes can be tweaked with custom headers and background colors, Custom Design unlocks next-level customization.

Think back to the content you expect to publish on your site. Do you need a design that showcases photos? If so, choose a portfolio site or a design that makes the most of high-resolution photos. Perhaps photography plays a small role in your website design. If so, avoid themes that only look good with a lot of photos.

09 Sep 2015

Why Real Estate Investment is Great for Moms

I’m a mom of 3 and I’ve been a real estate investor for 11 years now.  I started with duplexes and single family home flips and my husband and I are now moving to bigger properties.  I have found real estate investment to be great for my family’s finances and lifestyle.

It’s a wonderful business for women, especially moms, but there are relatively few women in this space.  

I’m always striving to improve my skills and knowledge, so I attend a lot of real estate conferences and seminars.  When I’m in these conferences, I’m always surprised at how few women are there (often it’s less than 10%).  

It’s surprising because real estate is a particularly great investment opportunity for women – especially moms.

Here are 4 reasons why I think real estate investing is particularly great for moms:

 

  1. Cash flow –   Provided you invest well, your real estate investments should provide cash flow from day 1.

In other words, after you deduct expenses from the income from your tenants, your have profits that you get to keep.  It’s a GREAT way to make money, and it’s mostly passive income (i.e., you don’t have to work for it – the money just comes to you).

 

  1. Life-style Friendly Business – remember that part about receiving cash flow that’s mostly passive?  That means that while you are making money your time is freed up for you to spend more time with your family, travel, etc.

Since we are all about helping moms find more time for themselves, we love this.

 

  1. Appreciation – Property values aren’t always rising, but over the long term all real estate values tend to rise or appreciate. This means that in addition to the cash flow, your net worth is also increasing as the value of your properties increase.  

This is helpful for you and can be a vital part of leaving a legacy for your children.

 

4.Tax Benefits – The federal government decided that they wanted to promote property ownership, so there are all sorts of tax benefits in the tax code for doing so.  

First, unlike other businesses you might own as an entrepreneur, rental cash flow is not subject to self-employment tax.  In other words, if you make $25,000 in rental income in a year or $25,000 with a side-business selling crafts on Etsy, you’ll pay less taxes on the rental income.

Another way in which you get to keep more of your cash flow is through something called depreciation.  It allows you to deduct a portion of the property value from income and pay less taxes.  In some cases, even though you’re getting income from your investment property, your property will reduce your overall tax burden (so you’re paying less taxes on all your income – not just on your income that you receive from the property).

For these 4 reasons and more, real estate investing is great for moms.

 

09 Sep 2015

What make a brand successful?

Branding is a way to distinguish your product or service from the rest of market and create a perceived value in the mind of potential customers. For example, in the car world, the Mercedes brand creates different expectations than the Kia brand. However, branding is also important for small businesses that want to stand out in the market, and the keys to successful branding include knowing your target customers and making all your decisions with a focus on what’s important to them.

Define your customers

The first key to successful branding is to define the types of customers you want to attract. Moms with toddlers or women without children? Men who like drag racing or those who prefer quiet afternoons in nature? Health-conscious individuals or those who don’t know a carrot from a turnip? Make a list of all the types of customers you want your business to attract. Volvo built its brand on attracting people concerned with auto safety.

Study Your Customers

Find out what is important to the customers you want to attract. If you already have some customers, you can survey them. Otherwise, look at demographic information and other studies done that provide information about your target customers. Once you know what’s important to your target customers, choose the three or four outcomes that are the most important to your ideal customer.

Be Consistent with Your Brand Position

Using the three or four outcomes you defined, create a brand position that describes what your business does and for whom, the unique value your business offers and how this value is different from the competition, and the benefits the customer gets from your product or service. Also, decide on the one most important thing that your business always promises to deliver to customers. Consistently make all your decisions based on this brand promise and your brand position.

Create the Elements of Your Brand

Create a brand personality — traits you want your business known for — and, if you have an established business, a brand story that shows how your business’ history adds value and credibility to the brand. Also, create the physical elements that make up the brand, including your logo, business tagline, colors, fonts, imagery and other physical elements used in marketing and presenting your brand. These physical brand associations should reflect your brand promise and all your brand traits, and also support your brand position.

Market Your Brand

According to Dan Coughin, president of the Coughlin Co., “The key to branding is reminding the customer of what you want them to remember about your brand,” and he says every contact (including marketing efforts) you have with current or potential customers must reinforce your brand.

09 Sep 2015

New design trends

Looking for a website refresh and don’t know where to start? Some of the trendiest elements in web design right now are fun aesthetically and pretty easy to use.

Adding a trendy feature to your current design, or new build, can help create a modern vibe that can help drive visitors to your site. And what’s particularly nice about this tri of trends is that you can use them with existing elements, color and typography palettes and branding.

Here’s what’s trending in design this month:

1. Duotone color schemes

Duotone color palettes have been around for a long time, but the recent take adds a color wash effect to a duotone gradient for a full-screen, high impact effect. It’s something that trended out in a major way with flat design, but thanks to stunning usage by Spotify duotone is back.

So what exactly is duotone?

It is the use of two colors to form a palette. In the most basic form, duotone is a complementary combination from the color wheel. In more complex uses, designers are using all kinds of color combinations and breaking the rules with pairings.

Most of the duotone effects feature a brightly-colored overlay on top of an image. The duotone effect highlights darks and lights and creates visual impact with stunning color. Spotify uses it in a great way to make standard artist photos that you’ve likely seen dozens of times look just different enough to be attention grabbing.

It’s a technique that you can use in a variety of ways. It works with almost any design concept and can be used as a full-screen element, such as many of the examples above, to create dominant art. It can also be used to create an interesting background, to accent user interface elements or to help add emphasis to a specific part of the design. Duotone works best when used for a single design element. The technique can be overpowering and should be used in moderation.

2. Spilt-screen design

Websites featuring a split-screen design are growing exponentially. The design technique features two panels of content side-by-side. Most of these concepts use a symmetrical outline so that each side of the screen has the same size and shape.

The result is a cool, dual content experience on desktop computers and (when coded properly) a great screen-by-screen experience on smaller devices, where the panels collapse and are stacked scrolling elements.

The design opportunities with the split-screen trend are limitless—half and half splits, splits with cards or grid-style elements, a subtle split and the list goes on. Each side of the design can also drive users to different types of content and help you glean valuable user analytics about the type of content that people want to see and click on.

Split-screen designs are user-friendly, work well in responsive frameworks and don’t overpower other design techniques that you might want to use.

Here are a few ways to split the screen effectively:

  • Pair color and typography when you don’t have strong visuals.
  • Focus the attention of the user with left to right movement that results in an action.
  • Use color blocking to split the screen and give your message plenty of room while increasing readability.
  • Think of a split-screen as oversized cards. Stack container elements in a mosaic or masonry style pattern to showcase different pieces of content.
  • Keep each “screen” simple. The trick to this design concept is the split screen. A minimal style can help add emphasis to the content therein.

3. Typography in a shared space

This is one of those trends you almost have to see, to understand: typography is extending into shared spaces in the design. Look at most websites and there are images and backgrounds and type. Elements are either made together, such as type on an image, or they are completely separated.

More designers are breaking out of that format and creating projects where type extends into the spaces of other elements. It’s interesting and fun to look at.

It can also be a challenge to create, because of concerns about readability.

The technique works best with simple typography, such as a medium-stroke sans serif. Text should have plenty of contrast to stand out from the background and any elements it crosses into or across. For this reason, most of the designs using this technique use white or black lettering.

Text also needs to have some size for this to work. Almost as important as color contrast, is contrast in size and space. You also have to take special care in how the text moves with different screen sizes or breakpoints so that letters do not cover areas of the image that are vital to your message.

Conclusion

While a lot of design trends come and go almost as fast as you start to recognize them, the ones that stick around often work well with other time-tested techniques. That’s what stands out the most about this trio of modern styles. Each can be worked into a layout for a touch of newness. These techniques are fairly easy to implement (and remove later) without destroying your entire aesthetic.

Try one of these techniques for a visual refresh. Think about getting out of your comfort zone a bit with bold color choices or a change just to your homepage. Or go a little more bold and try a combination of trendy techniques for a design that really stands out.

[From http://www.webdesignerdepot.com/]

 

09 Sep 2015

Daily Inspiration

On autumn weekends with good weather you can almost experience caravans of people marching over the grandiose lookout balconies between the Dolomites and the Tauern and filling the mountain lodges to capacity. But very few people have the idea of turning the perspective around and approaching the Carnic ridge for once from the valley side. And that is something that is certainly worthwhile.
It is no coincidence that at Heinfels in the valley of Drau, which is called Pustertal here, there stands an ancient castle that still appears to be fortified. It guards the entrance to two valleys: the Villgratental and the Tyrolean Gailtal. The latter is quite hidden, as it begins with a terrain level high above the valley floor of the river Drau. There is a climb of several hundred metres on a serpentine road before reaching the community of Kartitsch, with the prettily shaped tower of the St. Leonhard parish church. From the enclosure wall of the cemetery you can enjoy a distant view to the west into the Pustertal, which here runs in a strikingly straight line. The reason for this is a distinct geological line, the “peri-adriatic seam“. This frontier line leaves the Pustertal in Kartitsch and follows the Tyrolean Gailtal, which to the east of the Kartitscher Sattel is called the Tilliacher Tal, and then further east beyond the federal border with Carinthia again changes its name, and for the next 20 kilometres goes under the name of Lesachtal. At Kötschach-Mauthen the name of the valley changes again, confusingly back to Gailtal, which at Villach at last flows into the Drau.
Viewed from above, the Gail or Lesachtal also runs in a straight line. There is a clear distinction in appearance between the northern and southern sides of the valley. N ons side the gentle foothills of the Lienzer Dolomites, with its wide alp areas, on the other side the rocky contours of the Carnic ridge towering above thick mountain forest and marking the state border with Italy.
In Kartitsch we are already 1.350 m above sea level, the area is one of the highest situated valleys in East Tyrol, which itself is at high altitude.
Some 200 m higher the Kartitscher Sattel is reached, from where you can look down onto Obertilliach and Untertilliach.
“Golzentipp“ is the name of the local mountain in this area. A perfect vantage point with a grandiose panorama view, encompassing the Hohen Tauern and the Schober group of mountains, the Lienzer Dolomites, the Carnic Alps, the Sextener Dolomites and far into the Pustertal. The chances are good that the view can also be enjoyed, as testified by the many years of meteorological records taken in this region, showing an above-average number of sunny days.
Fans of high rocky cliffs will prefer the south side of the valley and head for one of the many side valleys of the Carnic ridge. Pfannspitze, Großer Kinigat, Porze, Cima Manzon, Gamskofel, Hochspitz, Steinkarspitz – between the Obstanser See and the Luggauer Scharte there are countless opportunities to test your stamina and alpine abilities in the midst of grandiose mountain scenery.
[From mountainvillages.at]