New to Business? Make Sure You Protect It!

Starting a business has never been easier thanks to the internet. Even if you’re just a single mom at home with an idea, it’s possible to turn that idea into something productive and possibly successful assuming you have the right help and training. Of course, it’s not as easy as clicking a few links and typing in a few words, it does take considerably more work than that. However, 2017 has seen a sharp increase in virtual businesses and it’s expected that more and more single moms are going to start their own companies from the comfort of their own homes.

Unfortunately, there are many important factors to keep in mind when running a business, and one that you should never forget is protection. Whether it’s protecting your website from hackers or preventing people from stealing your personal creations, it’s important to safeguard your company from all the threats you can. It can be daunting, so here’s a quick guide on how you can guard your business against malicious intent.

Source: Pexels

Make Sure You Have Insurance

The first major consideration is insurance. If you’re going to be working with others or offering advice, then the most basic form of insurance to get is liability insurance. For example, if you offer some advice or create a website for someone that is eventually hacked, it could turn around to bite you because they could sue you for failing to help them. Liability insurance can cover the legal expenses and help to pay for any damages that you are forced to compensate. Make sure you compare insurance to get the best price that won’t take up your entire budget. Insurance gives you the freedom to grow your company without worrying about something breaking or causing you to halt your growth, and it’s essential for anyone that’s serious about their company.

Mind Your Words

As a public entity, everything you say and do in the name of your company is going to be put on record. All of your social media posts are going to be archived in one way or another, ever controversial thing you say is going to be recorded and used against you in the future, and your comments about certain products could land you in a lawsuit. Make sure you remain professional in the eye of the public or else you could suffer dire consequences. Whether it’s an email you plan to send, conversations with investors or just a blog post that is attached to your company, you have mind your words.

Protect Your Digital Assets

If you’re going to run a virtual business, then you need digital protection as well. Take a look for the best antivirus you can afford and make sure it is always up to date. The last thing you want is a virus stealing all of your passwords or customer information from your computer and selling it on the black market. If possible, use cloud services as much as possible to store business-related documents and data. It’s much harder to hack into and comes with protection already.

Which House For Me?

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There are many decisions that you have to make when moving house, from location to budget. The finances surrounding moving, whether you are buying or renting, can seem overwhelming and financial stress is not something to ignore. But the biggest decision you have to make, before you can even start looking, is what sort of house are you looking for?

Do you need a family home? Is this a second house? Have you got restrictions surrounding having a garden, a garage or a certain number of rooms? These are all things that you need to consider for the immediate future, but you should also consider years down the line – if you are looking to buy a house for the long term, is it going to meet you needs years down the line?

You also need to consider the implications of buying a different property than you are used to; the change between a house and a bungalow might not be that great, but between a bungalow and a farmhouse can be huge. Not only do you have the added space within the house – but have the grounds around it too that will need maintaining.

If you opt to buy a farmhouse or a ranch with the land included, you don’t have to farm the land yourself. You can always rent the fields to farmers, or to split the land up and sell it off – although renting or farming it yourself is a better investment in the long run.

Are you going to be looking for a new property or an older one? Both have their benefits; a new build has the most up-to-date materials and appliances and shouldn’t need any work for many years to come. However, new builds tend to be a lot more expensive than an older building. A property that has been around for some years might need some more looking after, but they are full of character and history. Some of the oldest buildings have rich pasts.

Buying a second home also comes with some extra considerations; like who will look after the property when you are not there? You can rent out the property to holiday-goers, or you can look into a house-share, where you buy the property with a second party and split the use. A second home can be a good investment, but if it just sits there, you can lose a lot of money through taxes, insurance and other bills.

If you are considering moving abroad than be aware that the standard size for homes vary in different countries. A town house in America is typically bigger than one for the same price in the UK, this comes down to the materials used, the age of the building and the economy of the country. You will also need to be aware of the different types of buildings common in different countries, like a ksar found in the oasis towns in northern Africa.

Here are some of the more common types of housing within the US with a short overview of what they generally are like.

House

Your basic house is usually two-story with an attic. They can be detached, semi-detached or terraced, and can date as far back as the colonial years. Typically they come with a rear and/or front garden, a driveway and a garage, or some combination of the four. Houses are incredibly common and make great homes for couples, families or single people. You’ll find larger properties out in the suburbs rather than in a city.

Bungalow

A bungalow is classed as a single-story building, although they mostly include an attic. Like a house, they usually come with gardens, drives and garages. Bungalows again are great options for many people but have the added bonus of no stairs for the elderly. A bungalow might be a good option for downsizing your home when retiring. But you can get some sprawling bungalows that are larger than a typical house. Bungalows are quite common in areas that suffer from earthquakes.

Townhouse

A townhouse, or a terraced house, is a row of attached houses. The common difference between referring to the property as a ‘town’ or ‘terraced’ house is due to the size. A townhouse is typically a three-story building. The term came into use during the Victorian era, when both town and terraced were being built on mass with speed. A townhouse is a great family home, and usually has a garden. You have neighbours either side, which will be annoying if they’re loud, but great if you make friends with them as they will be extra eyes on your property while you’re not there.

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Cottage

A cottage is, traditionally, a more European structure although they have been copied over the years throughout Northern America. It is an older building made of stone and, originally, had a thatched roof. Most cottages have been renovated for modern conveniences, including a modern roof. If you find a cottage with a thatched roof, be mindful of the cost of repairs and rethatching in the coming years. But they are great character-filled homes, the beams crossing the ceilings and the picturesque windows are very much like a fairy-tale cottage. Most cottages found in small towns have been joined with their neighbours, meaning that the original two-roomed structure can be a lot larger.

Apartment

Apartments are common throughout towns and cities, but if you are shopping in the heart of a city like New York, don’t expect to find a house nestled amongst the skyscrapers. That said, apartments make great homes, for families and couples. They vary in size, and you can get some two-storey apartments. You do have neighbours above, below and either side, so choose wisely. You won’t get a garden or garage with an apartment, but you may get a balcony that you can fill with flower boxes, and the views you can get within the city can be spectacular. As well as your usual apartment, you can also go for the penthouse suite, which is usually the top floor, and can take up the entire floor. These are obviously more pricey, but the view from the top must be the best.

Condos

In structure a condo is the same as an apartment, it’s just the ownership that changes. An apartment block is often owned by a single entity and rented individually, where a condo has a landlord for that one unit, not the entire block. However, seeing as the landlord is presumably making a living out of renting, an executive condo does have the reputation of being more modern with more investments made into the property.

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Farmhouse

A farmhouse can come with or without a farm, but they tend to be situated in the country, surrounded by fields. If you are looking for a working farm for crops, poultry and smaller livestock, then this is the type of house you’re looking for. And if you just want a nice big building, in the country with a bit of land – this is perfect for you too. There is plenty of space for children and pets to run around.

Ranch

A ranch is like a farm on steroids. These slices of land are huge and are more geared towards large livestock like cattle, bison or horses. The houses are similar to farmhouses, but successful ranches will have been added to extensively over the years. It’s easier to find a not-working farm than a ranch.

No matter what house you choose – make sure it is right for you and your family. Don’t judge a house on first glance, and always check out the neighbours before committing to a property. If you can, visit the property a couple of times, at different points in the day – you’ll want to know if it is in the middle of rush hour traffic, whether it’s easy to access in the dark or if the neighbours are nocturnal.

Taking The Next Step: How To Know If The Time Is Right

Many couples rush into marriage with disastrous consequences. Indeed, statistics show that around 50% of partners in the US will get a divorce at some point. That is terrible, and it’s something we should all work towards changing. Most of those couples got married too soon. They got distracted by the excitement of finding someone special, and those people didn’t use common sense. With that in mind, there is a short guide on this page that should help to let couples know when the time is right. People shouldn’t get married until they can place a tick next to all the points below.

Source Flickr

You’ve been on long vacations alone

Before people go out and purchase diamond engagement rings, it’s sensible to arrange some long holidays together. Lots of couples think they know each other well, but they’ve never spent considerable periods of time alone. So, don’t make that mistake, and head off into the sunset for a while. Being alone with someone else is a brilliant way to work out if both partners are well suited. Cracks can begin to show, and sometimes that’s a good indication that marriage isn’t the best route forwards. Here are some excellent couple’s vacation ideas:

  • Wild camping in the wilderness
  • Sunbathing in St Lucia
  • Sailing the coast in a yacht

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You’ve lived together for more than a year

In the traditional sense, couples aren’t supposed to live together until after they get married. However, hundreds of years of heartache shows us that method doesn’t work. So, it’s important to break from tradition and move in together for at least twelve months. People who do that will soon discover if they can handle their partner’s quirks long-term. They will also learn more about the dynamics of the relationship. For instance, most people don’t want to get married to someone who will make them do all the work. So, either:

  • Buy a house
  • Rent an apartment
  • Or spend the time traveling together

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You trust each other 100%

Trust is the most important aspect of all loving relationships. People who don’t trust each other are never going to have a happy marriage. Warning signs to consider include:

  • A partner who cheats
  • A partner who disappears
  • A partner who has skellingtons in the closet

Of course, different people will have different ideas of what trust means. Some folks are happy with open relationships where loved ones are allowed to stray. Whatever the situation, it’s vital for both partners to discuss their perspective ahead of time. That way, the chances of anyone getting hurt should decrease.

Readers should make sure they never rush into a marriage without first ticking all the points made above. It’s also sensible to discuss plans for the future before popping the question. For example, many marriages end because one partner doesn’t want to have children but the other does. It’s easy to avoid situations like that if people in a relationship learn to communicate openly. So, people should consider the information from this page and avoid making rash decisions when it comes to marriage. That is how they build a union that will stand the test of time.