Better Safe Than Sorry: How to Plan Ahead for Family Emergencies

60% of American families don’t have a plan in place for dealing with disasters.

Don’t get separated from your family when they need you the most. You should have a comprehensive family emergency plan in place, plus access to some emergency supplies.

Here are some ideas you should implement so you’re prepared for the next disaster.

Have a Communications Plan

During an emergency, there’s a good chance that your family won’t initially be together in one place. Chances are, you’ll either be at school or work. This is why communications plans are an essential part of any disaster strategy.

You should have a comprehensive plan for how you’ll communicate with one other in the event of an emergency. Be aware that while phones can store all the contact information anyone will need, they may run out of batteries.

In some emergencies, the electric grid may go out and you won’t be able to charge your phone. Every member of the family should, therefore, have a card with all the essential numbers and contacts details on it. You should place this somewhere where you’ll always have it; for example, in a wallet.

Of course, it’s not only the electrical system that’s affected. You might also have issues with the cell phone network.

If you can’t reach someone by phone, you should try sending them a text message. As the phone networks become less congested, your message will get through.

Stay Informed

Knowledge is power, and this is especially true in an emergency situation. You should be aware of the kinds of disasters and emergencies that could happen in your area.

You should also be aware of any emergency broadcast systems that are in place. For example, you might be able to subscribe to text message alert services, which will tell you if you’re at risk.

You should also consider how you’d stay informed during an actual emergency. Be aware that the power, internet, and cell networks are likely to go down. This means that many of the conventional ways of staying informed will no longer function properly.

Ideally, you should have something like a battery-powered radio in your emergency kit. Make sure you have the right kind of batteries accompanying it. Also, consider that batteries can deteriorate over time, so make sure you replace the batteries in your emergency kit every year or so.

Have an Evacuation Plan

It’s also important that you have an evacuation plan. You should sit down as a family and discuss where you’ll go in the event of an emergency.

You’ll need to make plans that account for your family pets, people in the family with special needs, and turning off your home’s utilities. There’s a good chance your kids will be in school or daycare when disaster hits, so they should know exactly where and when you plan to meet them.

When you have a good plan in place, you ensure everyone knows where they need to be so no one gets left behind.

You should also make sure you’re covered by your home insurance. A disaster is a lot less distressing when you know your family’s possessions are all covered. This useful article by BetterFlood tells you more about insurance.

Have an Outside Contact

It’s a good idea to have an agreed upon “outside” contact in the event of a disaster. This could be someone living in another state or even in another country. Since the disaster you’re experiencing probably won’t affect their essential services, they can act as a kind of “mission control.”

You might not be able to contact your family in the disaster area, but by using an outside contact, you might be able to relay messages to each other. An outside contact will also have access to the internet, so they’ll be able to relay a lot of information to you.

Have Emergency Bags

Ideally, you should always have emergency bags on standby for every family member. Pack these bags in such a way that you could leave your home at a moments’ notice with only these bags and have everything you need for survival.

The bags should contain things like basic medical supplies, containers for water, and tools such as flashlights. You should also make sure there is a good amount of clothes in the bags.

Another thing to consider packing is some emergency cash or traveler’s checks. It’s unlikely you’ll be able to withdraw any money from an ATM during a disaster.

Be Ready to Face the Elements

When you live in a house all your life, it’s easy to take protection from the elements for granted. In a disaster, however, bad weather can become a serious security threat.

Your disaster plan should include making sure everyone has a quality coat to wear. Good boots are also an incredibly useful thing to have in a disaster situation. There may be debris and broken glass, so walking around in everyday shoes is not going to cut it.

Pack Emergency Food

The bags should also contain a reasonable amount of emergency food. You may also want to include a supply of vitamins in your bag.

Good stuff to use is the freeze-dried and dehydrated food that backpackers use. This kind of food will last for a long time. Make sure you store your food in such a way that it’s protected from mice and other pests.

You should also consider purchasing some emergency cooking gear. Chances are, during a serious disaster, the electricity supply is going to go down, meaning you won’t be able to cook at home.

You also might need to cook while on the road. Think about purchasing a propane gas stove.

Stay away from any of the discount models. You need something robust and reliable if you’re going to depend on it during an emergency.

Make Family Emergency Plans Now

When it comes to survival, preparation is key. When you’re well prepared for dealing with disasters in a family emergency, not only are your chances of making it out unscathed increased, but you’ll also feel reassured that you have a comprehensive plan of action.

Want to order some vitamins for your emergency stash? Then check out our selection now.

Recover Confidently: How to Find a Top-Tier Truck Accident Lawyer

Every year, there are almost 500,000 motor vehicle accidents involving large trucks that take place all throughout the U.S. About 4,000 of them result in fatalities, and more than 100,000 of them cause injuries to occur. Many of the crashes also lead to extensive property damage to passenger cars and trucks.

If you’re ever involved in an accident with a truck, it’s important for you to touch base with a truck accident lawyer as fast as you can. You could win a large cash settlement in court that will cover the cost of any medical bills and auto repair bills you might face.

Finding a truck accident lawyer in your area shouldn’t be too difficult to do. But finding the right one can be a challenge. Here are 6 tips for tracking down a top-tier lawyer to handle your case.

List the Truck Accident Lawyers in Your Area

The U.S. is overflowing with lawyers at the moment. There are more than 1.3 million of them scattered across the country.

But you shouldn’t hire just any old lawyer to tackle a case involving a truck accident. Instead, you want to narrow your search down so that it includes only those who specialize in working on cases that involve truck accidents.

You can put together a list of these kinds of lawyers by Googling “truck accident lawyer in YOUR CITY.” This will bring up a long list of potential options for you to choose from. This law firm, for example, will pop up for those searching for truck accident lawyers in the Houston, TX area.

Compile a list of lawyers that might be right for your case. This will help you weed out lawyers in your area who handle other kinds of cases and get you one step closer to finding the right lawyer for your specific needs.

Look for a Lawyer With Tons of Experience

Once you have a running list of truck accident lawyers that might be right for your case, the next thing you should do is take a look at their websites to see how much experience they have.

Most lawyers will include a snapshot of their history right on their websites. You can read through a lawyer’s history to see how much experience they have when it comes to helping those who have been in truck accidents.

You don’t necessarily need to find a lawyer with, say, 40 years of experience working on truck accident cases. But you do want to find a lawyer that is familiar with the truck accident litigation process. It’ll give you the best possible chance to walk away from your case with a large cash settlement.

Find Someone Who Knows the Trucking Industry

One of the main reasons why you need to hire a truck accident lawyer with lots of experience is because the trucking industry is governed by some very complicated rules and regulations.

Working on a truck accident case is not the same as working on a case involving a regular car accident. Your lawyer will need to be very knowledgeable when it comes to the trucking industry and have a deep understanding of how certain rules and regulations could affect you.

When you speak with a lawyer for the first time, don’t be afraid to ask them how much they know about the trucking industry. They should be more than happy to tell you all about how they know the industry like the back of their hand.

Locate a Lawyer Who Understands Your Challenges

Those who have been in truck accidents often face unique challenges that make them different from the other people that lawyers work with.

For instance, many of the people who have been in truck accidents have undergone extensive medical procedures over the years. They’ve also been forced to live with certain injuries and ailments that might not ever go away.

A good truck accident lawyer needs to show empathy and compassion to a client while also working twice as hard on their behalf to get them a fair settlement. The lawyer that you bring on board to handle your case should show an understanding of the challenges you face and prepare to help you tackle them.

Check a Lawyer’s Reviews

You should not—we repeat, you should not—agree to work with any truck accident lawyer before checking out some of the reviews people have left for them in the past.

Many lawyers will include testimonials from past clients right on their websites. But even if they don’t, you can track down reviews for different lawyers on Google or Facebook.

Scan through these reviews to see what people have had to say about a particular lawyer over the years. You should look for a lawyer who has consistently racked up positive reviews from clients.

Consider the Costs of Working With a Lawyer

If you’ve never hired a truck accident lawyer before, you might think that it’s going to cost you a fortune upfront. But that isn’t true in most cases!

Unlike some other types of lawyers, most truck accident lawyers offer clients a contingency-based fee. That means that the lawyers only get paid if they’re able to get a settlement for their clients.

If you find a lawyer who insists on charging you upfront for their services, look around for a different lawyer. You could end up losing out on money if you hire a lawyer like that and don’t win your case.

Hire the Right Truck Accident Lawyer Today

Trying to find the right truck accident lawyer to represent you can be exhausting. There are so many lawyers out there who will want to represent you.

But as long as you follow the steps listed here, you shouldn’t have any problem finding the right lawyer for your case. You’ll feel a lot more confident about your situation when you have a good lawyer on your side offering you the best services.

Finding a lawyer following a car crash is just one of the things you should do. Read our blog to see some of the other steps you’ll need to take.

5 Tips for Creating Effective Safety Programs in the Workplace

Searching “safety programs” online reveals that safety is a priority across a multitude of industries. Everything from cyber risks for children to programs for preventing tractor deaths — 800 per year, by the way — populate the web.

Safety awareness saves lives. And in the following article, we’ll be discussing how to implement workplace-based programs that are effective at doing just that. Let’s begin!

1. Do Hazards and Risk Assessment

The first step in learning how to write a safety program is to take a look at all the hazards and risks present in your environment. It’s important to enlist representatives from every division of your company for this, from the entry-level employees to their supervisors.

You could get a fine list of risks and hazards from one or two upper-level managers. But they’re not going to employ the same attention to detail as spokespersons from each branch or department.

That’s because safety hazards occur on the frontlines. They seldom happen in boardrooms or offices. It also helps to know the most common injury types sustained in the workplace before implementing a safety program.

2. Put It in Writing

Workplace safety programs can never take shape without a written structure. So it’s important you get risks and hazards down into a tangible document your employees can review and learn from themselves.

It’s also important to make it a living, breathing document. Something you come back to, add to, or take away as needed. How WHS processes for the hospitality industry operate are one such example.

Flexibility is key. After all, new threats emerge all the time no matter what industry you call home.

3. Work with Your Employees

While it’s a start to have a polished system in place, that system won’t be worth the paper (or word processor) it’s written on if you don’t put it into practice. For that, you need employee buy-in.

Treat your safety program like a priority. Make it practical, and show your employees how it applies to their daily tasks and objectives.

4. Document and Investigate

You can implement a safety program and have your workers take every precaution, but eventually, something in the system is going to fail. When it happens, it’s important to document the occurrence and investigate the cause.

It’s unlikely you’ll ever be able to achieve 100 percent workplace safety. But you can eliminate most of the serious risks and mitigate any damages by staying on top of the causes.

5. Review and Adjust

The last step in how to start a safety program is knowing what to do with the results. This goes beyond documenting incidents and investigating their causes as they arise.

No, any good program will need an assessment mechanism that can isolate recurring issues. This can help reduce, eliminate, or prevent future issues. It also enables a company to know the financial impact of their programs in terms of reduced claims and lost productivity.

Safety Programs Save Lives and Money

Instituting safety programs will help your bottom line and, more importantly, save the lives and preserve the health of your employees. Ignore them at your own risk. And for more tips on workplace safety and injury prevention, check out our past posts on the topics.

It’s Not You, It’s Me: The Importance of Building Business Relationships

If it takes a village to raise a child, the same is true to raise a successful business. No one knows this better than people who are just starting out.

Not only do you need investors for financial reasons, but you need mentors, employees, vendors, and, of course, customers! That’s a whole village of people right there.

And what does that mean, dealing with people? It means you have to build worthwhile business relationships.

If you don’t, one branch of your business will suffer, and the others will as well.

Want to make sure all the parts of your business relationship machine are working smoothly? Get our tips for better success below.

Types of Business Relationships

When you’re building a business, there are four main types of business relationships you need to create. We’ll go through them below.

Relationship Type 1: Internal Business Relationships

Yes – your internal relationships are essential to the health of your company. You’re not going to attract investors or potential partners if they sense something is off on your end.

As a certain president just said in his state of the union (the politics aside), “Clean your own house first”.

That may mean letting that person go that never measures up to their colleagues. Or it may mean sitting down with them and figuring out why they can’t reach their goals.

Maybe something is going on at home and that’s why they’re coming in tired. Would working from home one day a week help them revitalize and pump up their numbers?

Can you organize for them to come in earlier or stay later, to better match their family schedule?

We can’t stress how important this is. When you take the time to treat your employees as people, they see you as one. And people like people a lot more than people like the vague idea of a business.

We promise that if you invest in someone and they deserve it, you won’t regret giving them some extra time off (or whatever).

Maybe it’s something as simple as getting them a new computer screen or an ergonomic work chair. Those wrist pads for carpal tunnel are less than $15 on Amazon.

Finally, even if everyone in your company is best friends – try to improve just one relationship. That’ll serve you well going forward.

Relationship Type 2: Your Vendors

Let’s say you run a business that needs regular deliveries of plain t-shirts. You make whatever you put on the shirts yourself, but you can’t create the final product without that shirt.

The person or group who provides your shirts is a vendor and they are essential to your business. How do you treat them?

You should treat them as part of your internal team – they are essential to your operation. Make sure you’re paying all invoices on time, being clear with your orders, and being kind if something goes wrong.

You don’t have to take a mistake in stride, but be understanding when you bring it up to them. No one goes into business to make mistakes and make things harder on themselves.

The better you treat them, the better they’ll treat you – and the better products you’ll make (together).

Want to go above and beyond just being cordial and kind? The best gift you can ever give a business is your recommendation.

That could mean leaving them a nice and thought out review online or giving their name out to other businesses. If you do that, they’ll be sure to treat you more like family than friends.

Relationship Type 3: Your Partners/Investors

This is the group of people that are most commonly thought of as “business relationship” partners. But as we’ve seen, they’re not the only ones.

They may be the ones you interact with the most, second to your employees and there’s no doubt they’re important.

Tip #1: The Platinum Rule

There are secrets to making these relationships work in a way that is best for everyone involved. One of those is the platinum rule, which is a little more empathetic than the golden rule we all learned as children.

The golden rule states that you should treat others how you’d like to be treated. But that assumes all of us need the same things out of an interaction.

When you look at the diversity of people and cultures, it’s obvious that that’s not true.

So instead, Michael O’Connor and Tony Alessandra wrote out the platinum rule. It says that you should treat others the way they’d like to be treated.

Aka and these are the authors’ words, “find out what makes people tick and go from there.”

Let’s look at a quick example. You work with a partner, mostly over email. You notice that they reply within an hour of all your emails. That shows that they value quick and efficient communication.

Even if that’s not something you care too much about, show them you respect their values by responding back quickly.

Tip #2 Learn People – Not Names

If you have business partners, take them out to dinner. Learn about them as people, as far as they’ll let you. It’s much easier to build a relationship with Bob the father and business owner, than Bob, CEO of Company BBA.

When you treat your business partners as people, just like your employees, they’ll value your connection more. Maybe that means they’ll be more forgiving if you and your business mess up on a joint dealing.

Or maybe it’ll just mean business proceedings are friendly and more pleasant. Both of those seem well worth a few dinners out, don’t they?

Tip 3: Be Responsive and Give Feedback

Remember in elementary school when you got a good grade on a test and your teacher wrote “super job!” and put a sticker? That made you feel happy, right? And proud?

Why did we ever stop doing that? Telling your business partners that you liked what they did or that they’re doing a great job is never a bad thing.

You don’t need a big shiny sticker, though. It’ll probably come off as unprofessional.

But what about an email like this?

Hey Name,

I just wanted to let you know that your employee exceeded my expectations in our last interaction. I’m always impressed with how quickly and nicely problems get solved.

Thanks,

Name.

Wouldn’t you, as a business leader, love to get an email like that? Well, sometimes you have to give to get – especially when saying “good job” is so underdone in the business world.

Relationship #4: Your Clients

Finally – let’s talk about the business relationships you have with your customers. If you don’t think of them as business relationships – then you’re not doing your business right.

Your clients see you as a service. They trust you to provide a service and in return, they give you their money and time.

You need to provide that service to them, at the level they expect, with just a little bit more.

How do you do that every time when each customer is different? You need to look at your other customer relationship trends.

What are your unhappy customers saying? They’re actually the most valuable to your business when it comes to learning about yourself.

Do they feel like you don’t ship or arrive fast enough? How can you address that? That’s a part of the service you’re not providing, that they think you should be.

Can you give shorter or more relevant arrival time windows? Deliver some sort of coupon or added value if someone takes too long or is late?

You want to take those bad reviews and turn them into good reviews. Even if that same person never trusts your business again – you should make the change.

That way, down the road, no one ever has the same issue and you can avoid that type of negative review.

Happy customers write good reviews, and that’s how you get warm leads. Need help with leads? Get details here.

Your Relationships, Nurtured

With these tips, we hope you’ll have success in your business for years to come. If you think of each relationship type as an essential part of your company, then you’re more likely to succeed.

That doesn’t mean that all business relationships will be the right fit or that they’ll all be exactly what you thought. Sometimes it’ll be a bad match and you’ll have to regroup.

If you know what you want, follow these tips, and communicate clearly – those instances should be few and far between.

Now that you’re improving your business’ relationship health, why not focus on in-office health next? Get tips here.

Renovate Your Corporate Strategy: How to Run a Successful Remodeling Business

Do you have the entrepreneurial spirit? Do you love to build things and receive great satisfaction from a job well done? If so, you’ve come to the right place!

The remodeling business is as important today as it’s ever been. This is because many homeowners are opting to save money by remodeling their existing homes rather than building new structures or buying new homes. This is a smart financial move.

It’s also good news for anyone considering going into the remodeling business. Do you have the desire to work for yourself, to work with customers to improve their homes, and to contribute to a thriving economy?

Let’s take a look at a few things you’ll need to know in order to get your own remodeling business off the ground.

Understand the Skills You’ll Need

Starting any kind of business requires asking yourself some serious questions. After all, not everyone has a head for the complexities of running a business nor the ambition to stay ahead of the competition in a crowded marketplace.

Getting into remodeling isn’t for the frail of heart. You’ll need to understand construction, have great people skills, be able to handle numbers, and be a very organized person.

This is a business that requires long hours and dedication to the job. You will have to deal with unreasonable and demanding clients who will call you at all hour of the day and night.

But most of all, you have to have the necessary business skills to get the job done right and to get it completed on schedule. So you’ll need to take a long look in the mirror, be honest with yourself, and decide if you’re qualified for the task and willing to give a hundred and ten percent.

Know Your Target Market

Smart entrepreneurs understand the importance of knowing the type of customers to target. When it comes to remodeling, perhaps you’ll want to target upscale homes in a big, expensive neighborhood.

High-end homes offer huge potential.

This type of customer has money and is ready to spend it. They tend to buy the best appliances, use the best building materials, and can recommend you to their friends. But they can also be extremely picky and demanding, and will often want you to focus solely on their project.

Middle-class homeowners can be easier to deal with, yet you’ll often have to take on more jobs for less money.

Some remodeling contractors are able to work with both type of clients, but you’d better make sure you have the manpower, resources, and skills to satisfy everyone.

Understand How a Remodeling Business Makes Money

A remodeling business generates income by charging customers for labor and materials for renovations of existing homes and other types of structures. Many construction companies specialize in commercial work, renovating businesses, schools, or municipal buildings.

The amount you’re able to charge for your hourly rate will be based on your level of expertise and the competitive rates in your area.

Understand the Startup Costs

Starting a remodeling business is like starting any company from scratch. There are plenty of expenses to get going. You’ll need to invest in expensive, specialized equipment. This includes power tools like drills and saws, hammers, ladders, extension cords, and air compressors, etc.

You will also need a commercial vehicle for your business, such as a pickup truck with signage on the door to advertise the business. The truck will need to be equipped to haul equipment and materials from site to site.

Other startup costs will include local permits and state licenses that allow you to do work in the area. You’ll also need insurance to cover any damage that might occur on job sites as well as workmen’s comp insurance to cover injuring to employees.

Be aware that these costs will add up fast.

Understand the Basic Steps to Starting a Remodeling Business

So now that you have a basic understanding of your target customer and what most of your startup costs will be, it’s time to look at the actual steps to getting your business up and running.

Well, first you’re going to need a business plan. This is essential to becoming a successful entrepreneur. Your business plan will layout things like startup costs, projected annual revenues, and how long you expect it to take for the business to break even.

The business will need to be registered as a legal entity. This prevents you from being held personally liable in the event that the business is sued. You’ll also need to register the business for taxes and open a business checking account.

As mentioned earlier, there are local permits and state licenses that you need to obtain. Without them, the business can be fined or even shut down.

Develop a Marketing Plan

Now you need to develop a marketing strategy and establish your brand. When considering your brand, remember to take your target market into consideration. After all, you need to appeal to the type of customer you’re hoping to attract.

Branding is all about how your business is perceived by the public, and a strong brand will help you stand out from the competition.

Marketing and promotion are never easy.

You’ll start by putting the company name on the side of all your corporate vehicles and invest in a quality website.

Social media is probably the most effective and low-cost form of marketing. You don’t have to spend a fortune on advertising, but there are a few things you can invest in that will be money well spent, including SEO that will take advantage of web searches by customers in your area.

Keep in mind that social media is also the way that satisfied customers will spread the word about your business. When someone is looking to hire a remodeling company, they will often survey their friends on Facebook and Twitter before talking to anyone face to face.

This is another reason to consider investing some marketing dollars in various forms of cheap advertising like CCP on Facebook.

Knowing When to Hire a Team

Once you’ve started attracting customers and getting jobs, you’ll likely soon discover that you can’t do everything yourself. This is especially true with bigger jobs and multiple job sites.

Keeping up with work demands means hiring skilled carpenters, installers, and even office personnel and accountants.

There are a few ways to find skilled tradesmen, including putting the word out with local hardware stores, posting a help-wanted listing on Craigslist and other online employment forums, or putting an ad in the paper.

The real trick is finding good help. You’ll need quality craftspeople with the skills necessary for the job, who show up on time and are able to complete jobs on schedule.

If you’re interested in finding a local contractor, ready this great post by Lars Remodeling.

Learn to Outsource

The simple reality is that there are only 24 hours in a day. And we’ve already established that you can’t do everything on your own. When starting out, you might not be ready to hire on a full-time crew. Luckily there are other options.

Outsourcing can be the ideal solution for covering your needs without getting in over your head. This is especially true for office-oriented needs such as accounting and secretarial work. After all, you don’t want to waste precious daylight hours behind a desk when you can be onsite managing projects and dealing with clients.

Resist the Impulse to Expand Too Quickly

This is a trap many small businesses fall into. As your workload grows, you’ll likely find yourself tempted to hire more people, and then take on even more jobs, and then borrow money to cover the financial burden of your growing operation.

This can be a dangerous cycle that leads to becoming overextended.

Don’t be afraid to stay small. This will help you keep your expenses low and provide a more manageable workload, thus reducing your stress.

As an entrepreneur, watching your business grow can be exciting, just be aware that things can easily get out of control in a hurry.

Find Your Niche

One of the smartest ways to help your business stand out from the competition is to offer something unique. Catering to a niche market actually reduces the number of companies you have to compete with.

Perhaps you cater solely to commercial properties or homes with minimal square footage, or offer unique designs that customers love.

Offering a specialization or catering to a niche market can certainly help you stand out, just make sure you are reaching a wide enough audience to provide plenty of work to sustain your business.

The Keys to Building a Successful Remodeling Business

Starting any kind of business requires a tremendous amount of time and effort. After all, no one said it would be easy. But for anyone who has ever dreamed of operating their own remodeling business, the sacrifices are worth it.

Small general contractors are an important part of the economy. They do amazing work and employ the craftspeople who make our country great.

Click here to learn how to make your home more energy efficient.

What is Trade to Trade and how to deal in such stocks?

Investment in the trading market can be a highly profitable proposition for young and experienced traders alike. One problem that is regularly faced by the less experienced investors in the trade market is specific terminologies that are prevalent in the market. Be it some of the basic concepts like a bear market, averaging down, or the slightly more complex ones like a trade to trade; one needs to know the ins and outs of all these terms to take advantage of the market and get attractive returns fully.

In this article, we will specifically discuss the concept of trade to trade settlement in the market. However, in order to understand the concept clearly, you will also need to be aware of other concepts like trade date and trade and settlement. The following is a brief introduction to these concepts.

What is Trade Date?

The exact date of the execution of a particular order is considered to be the trade date. The trade date is not only limited to the purchase of a specific share or security, but it also involves the date of sale or acquiring as well. Therefore, for every transaction that is carried out in the market a trade date is determined.

The concept of trade date is vital in case of any type of security which includes equities, bonds, instruments, foreign exchange, futures, and commodities. When discussing the trade date, it is essential to know that the exact time of the trade too can prove to be pivotal. The majority of the trades in India and abroad happen during the market hours; these are recorded with the day’s trade date. On the other hand, those trades that occur outside the working hours of the market could have a different trade reporting. On such occasions, trades are either recorded with the date of the following day or in case of a holiday, the next working day.

Relationship between Trade Date and Settlement

The date of trade is one of the two most important aspects involved in a market transaction. While the trade date records and then initiates the transaction, the date of settlement is the date on which the transfer between the two parties is executed. The period between the trade date and the settlement date is popularly known as the settlement period. There are certain instruments in the market which can be settled on the day itself; there are others which needs a considerable amount of time for the process to be completed. The Securities and Exchange Commission in 2017, set the rule that settlement of bonds, stocks, exchange-traded funds, municipal securities, and certain mutual funds should be completed within two days of the date of trading. This rule is known as T+2 days rule.

When looking at the concept of Trade to Trade Settlement, the difference is mainly found in the rules related to the trade date. It is here that it differs significantly with the traditional settlement model that is the rolling settlement. Let us delve deeper into the two concepts.

What is Trade to Trade Settlement?

Trade to trade settlement is a particular segment that is used only for trading shares on the compulsory delivery basis only. Many investors make the mistake of thinking that a section like the trade to trade settlement can be utilized on a daily basis. You must thus know, that is not an option as it is not possible to trade, trade to trade shares on intraday. Every share that is part of this segment when either purchased or sold, should be taken delivery of by paying in full only. This is why in many cases investors are discouraged from trading in this segment.

In addition to the payment, another piece of information that every trader should know when considering the trade to trade settlement is that there is no scope for netting off for the day as it is not permitted. The settlement of scrips that is available in the trade to trade segment is strictly done on a trade for trade basis. It is therefore that the investors understand and analyze the differences between regular rolling settlement and trade to trade settlement and not take a decision in haste as this could then cause inconvenience to all parties involved.

Example of Difference between Rolling Settlement and Trade to Trade Settlement

It is possible for an investor to trade stocks intraday under the rules and regulations of regular rolling settlements. This means that under normal circumstances one can buy particular security and sell it on the same day. This is where trade to trade settlements differ.

So under the regular rolling settlement, if an individual purchases 500 shares of company A at a price of INR 50 per share, and sold all 500 shares at INR 60 per share, on the same day before the close of trading, then that person would end up making a profit of INR 10 per share, and INR 5000 in total. In such a case the individual will get exactly that amount from his or her broker. This is, however, not the case when it comes to trade to trade settlements.

In a separate scenario, if the same individual were to purchase 500 shares of company A at a price of INR 50 per share, in a trade to trade segment, then the individual would have to pay INR 25,000 on the day of purchase to take the delivery of the shares that he had bought. Similarly, if the individual were to sell the shares on a particular day, then he or she would have to be presented with the purchase value for delivery of the shares on their Demat account. Therefore, when looked at it from an objective point of view, the primary difference between a trade to trade settlement and a regular rolling settlement is that in case of the former, each transaction is considered independently, whereas, in case of the latter, that is not necessarily the case.

Who to Check Out and Follow on YouTube

Interested in watching more YouTube videos? Just join the throngs of others doing the same. According to YouTube, the video viewing platform has more than 1 billion users. From entertainment channels and silly cat videos to educational courses and makeup demonstrations, YouTube truly has something for everyone.

While deciding who to watch and follow on YouTube is a personal decision, the following tips can help you get started and get the most out of this video-sharing site:

Consider Your Interests

To help decide who you should follow on YouTube, start by thinking about your hobbies and interests. If you are into fashion, search Kia Marie, Amy Serrano or FashionablyAMY on the site. If you like learning new things, you can find thousands of tutorials on any number of subjects, from Disneyland trip tips to learning a new language. And if you adore certain entertainers, you will certainly find their YouTube channel and stay up to date with their latest work. Once you narrow down the topics that interest you, it will be easier to look up certain channels and people, and YouTube will not seem so overwhelming. For example, consider the following suggestions:

If You Like Health and Fitness

There is no shortage of health-related videos on YouTube—so if you are a life-long fitness aficionado or just getting into eating more healthily, you will find lots of information and interesting people and companies to follow. For instance, Dr. Sam Robbins is an immensely popular YouTuber—he is an anti-aging and hormone specialist and nutritionist who posts interesting videos on a number of subjects; if you subscribe to him, you will easily see his most current videos.

Another great way to learn more about health is by subscribing to a number of company channels—for example, Amway’s YouTube page provides a great mix of health and beauty videos along with basic info about the business. If you have always wondered “What does Amway do, anyway?” check out the company’s YouTube videos that discuss the company and its goals, as well as the videos devoted to specific products and how they can help you achieve a healthy lifestyle.

If You Are Sad When a TV Show Ends

If you feel serious pangs of sadness when you finish a Netflix series or season of a show on TV, you can turn to YouTube to learn more about it and get additional “fixes.” A great example of this is the “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” series on Netflix—viewers who enjoyed this series were delighted to learn that Kondo has a YouTube channel that is chock full of additional tutorials on T-shirt folding and the like. Type in your fave TV show or Netflix series names on the YouTube search bar—you will probably find at least one related channel you can subscribe to.

If You Love to Cook

If you are looking for inspiration in the kitchen—and/or like watching entertaining cooking videos, YouTube definitely has you covered. TastingTable lists a number of cooking related channels to check out and subscribe to on YouTube—for instance, “The Victorian Way” shares classic English recipes from the early 19th Century. You can also search for and subscribe to your favorite chefs. For instance, Gordon Ramsay currently has millions of followers and he regularly posts videos with restaurant reviews, as well as helpful tutorials that will help you to be a better cook—in this video, Ramsay explains how to master five common cooking skills.

YouTube is Your Proverbial Oyster—You Can Make it What You Want

There is so much content on YouTube, it may seem overwhelming at first. But by considering your interests and who you would like to see more of, you can get a better idea of what to enter into the site’s search bar, and become one of the 1 billion people who enjoy visiting YouTube on a regular basis.

5 Affordable All-In-One Printers – The Best Option For Most People

Source: Google

Since its invention, printers were considered an important and yet boring necessity. They were big, clunky boxes that sit on a desk and only did one job; that is printing. It did not matter the object (either printing a document, novel, or simply a picture for your kids), these massive printers were always there and ready to do the job needed.

However, due to technological advancements in the field; all-in-one printers or business copiers have not only gained recognition, but also the appeal. This is because they come with not only the ability to print but also the power to scan documents and the ability to copy documents for safe keeping. Moreover, depending on the product you purchase, you may get an option that allows you to send an e-mail directly from the printer.

There are many companies that have designed all-in-one printers, including the most known companies such as Canon, Epson, and HP. Well, even though these printers come with many attractive features, the good news is that many of these products are quite affordable.

As such, below is a list of the best 5 all-in-one printers that are not only affordable but a great option for many people. The list is based on features, critic reviews, price, and value. This does also include user review analysis.

1. Epson Expression Home XP-440

5 Affordable All-In-One Printers – The Best Option For Most People

Source: Google

Epson is one of the leading manufacturers of printers in the market and greatly known for their collective high-quality products. As such, their Expression Home XP-440 all-in-one printer is one of the top options.

This printer has a shiny black design that enhances the appeal of an office or home office without feeling the need to decorate. One of its greatest features is the ability to connect wirelessly to a tablet, smartphone, or computer through Wi-Fi. Moreover, a person can print from a memory card. Let’s not forget that it has separate cartridges for each major ink color, which means that you only have to replace one at a time.

Aside from its ability to print text and photos, it has the ability to scan and copy documents or data. Its colored screen gives you the ability to see what is about to be printed, copied, or scanned before you hit the start button.

With its affordable $50 buying price; truly, Epson Expression Home XP-440 is a good value for your home office.

2. Canon Color ImageClass MF632CDW

5 Affordable All-In-One Printers – The Best Option For Most People

Source: Google

This is another well-known brand and perhaps many know it through its effort in the photography market. Well, they also make some of the best printers on the market.

With its $220 price tag, Canon Color ImageClass MF632CDW is a high-end product. For this price, you will get a device that uses laser technology to print, and because of this feature, the printer allows you to print 19 pages per minute. Furthermore, this laser printing machine has the ability to support 1200dpi, which simply means that whatever you are printing will look fantastic. Another feature is the ability to print wirelessly from any supported device.

This printer is best for printing world-class images. Furthermore, it can copy and scan also. With its 5-inch LCD display, you get full access to menus and allow you to see what you are doing before beginning scanning or printing. Because it comes with an oversized paper tray, a person has the ability to store 250 sheets of paper in the device at any given time.

3. Brother MFC-L3770CDW

5 Affordable All-In-One Printers – The Best Option For Most People

Source: Google

This is another brand name that has really made a name for itself by building high-quality brands with a host of great and attractive features. Furthermore, their products are very affordable and the Brother MFC-L3770CDW is a testament to this fact.

This printer is bulky, which makes it perfect for both home use and busy office. Additionally, it comes with four major functions that include copying, scanning, printing, and faxing. Through its 50 sheets automatic document feeder, a person has the ability to engage multiple single-pass duplex scanning and copying. This helps get big jobs done faster. It has the ability to print 25 pages per minute.

With the aim of making the printer flexible, Brother have included a special tray that can accommodate a variety of paper types for printing, that includes card stock, envelopes, and others. Because it is featured with both near-field communication (NFC) support and built-in Wi-Fi, you can print with ease wirelessly. It also features a 3.7-inch color touch screen, which helps to navigate with ease.

This product is available at an affordable price of $350.

4. HP LaserJet Pro MFP M521dn

5 Affordable All-In-One Printers – The Best Option For Most People

Source: Google

This is another product that can be used in either an office environment or home environment; and it is a product that will significantly improve your copying, scanning, and printing efforts. If you are looking for a powerful product that is also affordable, then HP LaserJet Pro MFP M521dn should be your choice.

This printer is actually a four-in-one machine that comes with the ability to fax, copy, scan, and print. the best thing about this machine is that it uses laser technology, which has truly enhanced its performance. It has the ability to print 42 pages per minute. To get network printing, you have to use a network cable. For sure if you are looking for the best image quality, then be assured that this is the printer for you.

The HP LaserJet Pro is fully capable of printing a variety of paper types including index cards and standard size. It has been featured with a 3.5-inch touch screen that effortlessly helps you to control printing, scanning, and the others. Additionally, because it comes with fax support, a person can send 59-page faxes in 6 seconds.

With a price tag of $900, which may seem too expensive, HP LaserJet Pro does deliver excellent value for the price.

5. Epson Workforce Pro WF-4740

5 Affordable All-In-One Printers – The Best Option For Most People

Source: Google

This is another product from Epson and it is also a high-end all-in-one product. The Epson Workforce Pro WF-4740 is actually a four-in-one printer, which comes with copying, scanning, faxing, and printing capabilities. It supports fast printing, duplexing, and a PrecisionCore ink technology that improves the quality of the print without sacrificing the speed. Furthermore, it is capable of printing documents through Wi-Fi or Gigabit Ethernet, which means that you can print from different sources.

It has the ability to print 24 pages per minute and offer 4800 X 1200 dpi color resolution which is impressive. It has been featured with a 4.3-inch LCD colored touchscreen that makes shifting through different modes fast and easy. According to the manufacturers, this product has been designed for both home users and small businesses.

With a price tag of $180, truly Epson Workforce Pro is a printer that is not only affordable but capable of delivering.

Crafting as a hobby for boosted happiness and anxiety relief

Hobbies should be part of your everyday life. Being able to do something that relaxes you and helps you detach from work-related stress or personal problems can be highly relevant for your health in general. Crafting is one of the hobbies that have shown most amazing effects in terms of boosting happiness and easing anxiety. This type of activity comes with impressive advantages, advantages that cannot be overlooked. If you have been recently thinking about developing crafting as a hobby yourself, learning a bit more on the subject might be useful.

Benefits

The topic of crafting is a complex one, and because there are so many different activities that fall into this hobby category, starting form knitting an up to hand painting ceramics, you might not actually realize what this hobby can actually do for you, what it can bring in your life. While you will need to dedicate yourself to this hobby, in order to actually experience the benefits for yourself, if you do a bit of research on the matter, you will find out that the following effects can be obtained:

  • Combating depression and anxiety

Anxiety has become an epidemic in recent year, and depression rates are also increasing. Developing a hobby that gives you the opportunity to focus all of your attention on something and reduce your stress and worries can bring amazing results to the table. A study has indicated that handmade creative expression can make you feel healthier and happier, influencing for the better your self-perception. Positive attitude and interaction, together with boosted mood will be reached once you incorporate arts and crafts into your life. 

  • Foster creativity

Because there are no exact rules you need to follow when you are designing a handmade object, your imagination will be boosted and you will start exploring your creative side. Whether you are making a home decoration using tulle ribbon, you are giving a new purpose to an antique furniture item or are painting a set of plates, your creativity will be fostered, and this aspect can be helpful in other life areas as well.

  • Social benefits

Another benefit you should consider is the social improvements that you will be able to reach. If you decide to join an Arts and Crafts class to develop this hobby properly, you will be able to meet new people, learn from others and socialize more. You can also craft with your friends and family, aspect that will help you get closer together.

  • Cognitive improvement

In another study made on the topic, it has been pointed out that besides giving you the opportunity to develop certain skills, your ability to focus and concentration will also be improved, once you pursue crafting activities on a regular basis. Increased attention span will be a natural outcome here. A crafting hobby will allow you to keep your brain in shape – this is relevant in particular for the elderly who are able to slow down cognitive decline this way.

Crafting as a hobby for boosted happiness and anxiety relief

How to master crafting

Depending on what type of crafts and arts you are particularly interested in, it might take you a while until the results of your projects actually meet your expectations. To make the process of mastering crafting as enjoyable and productive as possible, you should:

  • Find your niche

Think about the type of crafts you would mostly enjoy creating. Perhaps knitting isn’t exactly your cup of tea, but decorating and painting furniture items might be something that brings a bit more interest to the table. Take a look at some crafting projects, try out a few for yourself, and decide on your ideal niche.

  • Get your hands on the right supplies

You won’t be able to reach beautiful results if you don’t have what you need at your disposal. As soon as you have chosen your crafting niche, get your hands on the right supplies. From ribbon to paint or thread, go online, and shop for all your essentials.

  • Consider joining a class

Joining a class might also be a good idea, if you want to take the right steps in this direction and learn from someone with more experience. A class will help you develop your abilities much faster. A crafting  group is also an appealing alternative.

  • Keep practicing it

Don’t rush into thinking you will be able to design beautiful objects in just a week or two, Practice makes perfect and this needs to be your motto. Keep practicing, even if it seems like you aren’t getting anywhere, you will eventually get the hang of it and become better. It’s also highly relevant that you do it with passion.

Crafting as a hobby for boosted happiness and anxiety relief

From hobby to business – chance for profit

One last thing that should be mentioned on the matter is that crafting can become so much more than just a way of spending your free time. If you develop the right type of skills, find your niche and become actually good at it, your handmade objects can help you generate some extra income. Nowadays, more than ever, people are interested in buying authentic, handmade elements, whether it’s a knitted scarf or a handmade home decoration, the uniqueness that revolves around these type of objects draws consumerism attention. You can consider posting your creations on various platforms to auction or sell them. Just by researching how popular Etsy has become, for example, you can conclude for yourself that selling your designs is possible. So this is certainly something you should keep in mind if you do in fact fully embrace the art of crafting.

Crafting can be the ideal hobby, and once you experience the range of benefit it provides, it might become your new favourite pastime. It’s important to fill your life with things that bring you joy and help you combat issues such as stress and anxiety, and crafting has been proven to work great in this department on numerous occasions. As you can see, from the information mentioned here, there are various aspects that make this type of hobby worth considering. If you were looking for something to do in your free time, this might be the perfect answer.

Green Up Your Space: How to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

Wondering how to make your home more energy efficient and avoid potential catastrophes such as leak detection?

You’re certainly not alone in seeking out answers. Many homeowners want to improve their home energy efficiency to lower bills. They also want to be more environmentally conscious.

Homeownership comes with an abundance of responsibilities. These responsibilities are added on to other expenses like a car payment, student loan debt, and paying for the kids’ new school clothing.

Even though there may be upfront costs needed to get the ball rolling, the advantages of going green can last for years to come. As our go-green strategies are successful, we can end up saving big time.

So, what are some of the ways to improve our home’s energy efficiency?

Read on to discover how to make your home more energy efficient to lower your bills and help the environment.

Going Green: How to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

The average homeowner in the U.S. spends over $2,000 on energy bills every year. If we want to improve our cash flow and our environmental impact, then we’ll need to invest wisely. Explore the following ways to improve your home’s energy efficiency.

1. Add Greenery

Greenery like shrubs and trees around your home can help to lower heating and cooling costs. The best part is that it also helps to improve the environment.

To see the best results, strategically plant trees around your home. Make a point to plant a large tree on the western and southern sides of your home. This will lower cooling bills in the summer and lower heating bills in the winter when the tree’s leaves have fallen off.

You can also add shrubs around your home to reduce the impact of cold air entering your home in the winter. To be more energy efficient, plant shrubs on the western and southern sides of your home.

2. Attic Insulation

Adding more insulation to your attic can greatly affect your home’s energy efficiency. Doing so allows your home to retain heating and cooling depending on the needs of the season. This is because added insulation reduces air leaks.

Sealing all air leaks in your home can save you 5% to 30% per year on your energy bills and usage. And, since a large amount of your energy can escape through your attic, it’s a good idea to start there. You can then use other air sealing techniques like weather stripping and caulking around the remainder of your home.

3. Window Upgrades

Cracks in windows, doors, and skylights account for over 20% of energy loss in our homes.

Upgrading your windows can help to reduce this loss and lower your energy bills. For example, installing storm windows can reduce heat loss by 25% to 50%.

Start by upgrading your windows with Energy Star rated windows to get the best results. Double glazed windows with built-in blinds are also a great example of energy efficient windows to shop for.

4. Thermostat Control

Lower your thermostat to make your home more energy conscious. Seek to lower temperatures especially during times you aren’t at home or when you’re asleep.

Lowering your home’s temperature by just 10% to 15% for 8 hours can help you to reduce your heating and cooling energy costs by 10%.

You can also purchase and install a programmable thermostat that will do all the work for you!

5. Unplug

Unplug electronics when they’re not in use. Electronics not in use don’t consume nearly the amount of energy as electronics being used, but they still use unneeded electricity.

Aim to unplug any all electronics not in constant use to help improve your home’s efficiency and energy bills. While you may not see a big difference in your bills, overtime these costs can add up.

Electronics in your bedroom may also be distracting you from getting a good night’s rest. So by unplugging them in your bedroom, you’re also improving your own energy levels.

6. Solar Panels

Create your own energy production system by installing solar panels. Solar panels help you to produce your own electricity to power your home using the sun’s energy. While this is not a low-cost energy efficiency fix, it can greatly help to improve your home’s energy usage.

Installing solar panels may also help you to save annually on your taxes!

7. Sunshine

Use sunshine to your advantage! In the winter, open your blinds. Especially during the afternoon when the sunshine is at its strongest.

8. Assess Appliances and Fixtures

Upgrade appliances and fixtures with Energy Star rated products. This includes your furnace, refrigerator, stove, and even your showerhead.

Replacing these items will cost more upfront, but in the long-term, they can help you to significantly lower your bills. Pay special attention to your HVAC system as well to ensure it’s operating efficiently and at full capacity.

9. Wash Wisely

When washing clothes or dishes make sure to only wash full loads. This will help you to reduce water waste.

When you can wash clothes in cold water instead of hot water. Heating the water causes additional energy usage, which increases your energy bills.

10. Rain Barrels

Install a rain barrel or two around your home to take advantage of water savings. Rain barrels allow you to collect rainwater, store it, and then use it to water your plants and grass.

11. Upgrade Lighting

On average, homeowners spend 11% of their energy usage on lighting. So, if you haven’t already upgraded your light bulbs, now’s the time to invest in this easy energy fix.

Upgrade any incandescent light bulbs to fluorescent or LED bulbs. Also, upgrade lighting fixtures to Energy Star rated lighting options. In the end, replacing your home’s bulbs and fixtures could reduce your home’s lighting energy usage by 50% to 75%.

One Fix at a Time: How to Make Your Home More Energy Efficient

Knowing how to make your home more energy efficient frees up your wallet for other financial priorities. Even small fixes can go a long way, so it’s a good idea to start within your budget and then save up for more costly energy efficiency updates.

Planning on using the money you save on energy bills to remodel your living room? Check out our blog post for 7 awesome living room remodel ideas.