self-employment http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/7877/all en-US Which Retirement Account Is Right for You? http://www.wisebread.com/which-retirement-account-is-right-for-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/which-retirement-account-is-right-for-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/retirement_fund_money_000085578577.jpg" alt="Learning if an IRA, 401k, or 40k is right for you" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Saving for retirement is one of the most important things you can do for your future self. With so many options to choose from, how can you decide which type of account to invest your money in? There are a number of differences between an IRA, Roth IRA, and 401K. We've covered some of the most important factors below to get you started.</p> <h2>Roth IRA</h2> <p>Any contributions you make to your Roth IRA are with funds you've already paid taxes on, so your money can grow tax-free from then on. If you make more than $132,000, or $194,000 for married couples filing jointly, then you won't be eligible to contribute to a Roth IRA. There are no required minimum distributions and no age limit for contributions.</p> <p>Maximum contribution amount: $5,500 per year, $6,500 if you're age 50 or older.</p> <p>Tax advantages: Earnings grow tax-free with tax-free withdrawals in retirement.</p> <h2>Traditional IRA</h2> <p>Any contributions you make to your IRA are with funds you haven't been taxed on yet. You will be required to take a minimum distribution at age 70-&frac12;.</p> <p>Maximum contribution amount: $5,500 per year, $6,500 if you're age 50 or older; cannot contribute after age 70-&frac12;.</p> <p>Tax advantages: Contributing to your IRA can lower the amount of income you pay taxes on now. Once you retire, your withdrawals will be taxed at your ordinary income tax rate. If you make withdrawals before age 59-&frac12;, there will be an additional 10% early withdrawal penalty fee added. Certain approved purchases can be withdrawn penalty-free, such as a first home purchase and approved college expenses.</p> <h2>401K</h2> <p>A 401K is a retirement savings plan sponsored by an employer. Any contribution you make to your employer-sponsored deferred contribution retirement plan is made with funds you haven't been taxed on yet.</p> <p>Maximum contribution amount: $18,000 per year, $24,000 if you're age 50 or older.</p> <p>Tax advantages: Contributing to a 401K can lower the amount of income you pay taxes on now. Once you retire, your withdrawals will be taxed at your ordinary income tax rate. If you make withdrawals before age 59-&frac12;, there will be an additional 10% early withdrawal penalty fee added.</p> <h2>Which One Is Best?</h2> <p>If you can only open one account, or only have the funds to contribute to one retirement account, which is the one to go for? Suze Orman is a big proponent of the Roth IRA and calls it &quot;the best retirement investment you can make.&quot; There are also a number of benefits to the Roth IRA.</p> <p>For instance, you can withdraw your contributions (but not the earnings) in emergency situations, without worrying about taxes or penalties. While you don't want to ever withdraw from your retirement accounts, it can provide you with peace of mind knowing that the funds are available to you in an unexpected future emergency situation. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-surprising-facts-about-roth-iras?ref=seealso">7 Surprising Facts About Roth IRAs</a>)</p> <p>If you believe you are in a lower tax bracket now than you will be in retirement (like you are just starting your career), a Roth IRA is usually the way to go. With a Roth IRA, you will be investing after-tax funds now, which means you won't be taxed later when you are in a higher tax bracket. On the other hand, if you are near your peak income now, then you will likely be at a lower tax rate in retirement, which favors a traditional IRA or 401K plan. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-roth-iras-are-ideal-for-young-professionals?ref=seealso">Why Roth IRAs Are Ideal for Young Professionals</a>)</p> <p>If your employer offers contribution matching, definitely invest towards that account until you hit the company match limit so that you can benefit from the free money. With both an IRA and 401K, whatever you invest can be deducted from consideration this tax year. This means that you will be taxed on a lower amount, resulting in tax savings now.</p> <h3>Employer-Sponsored Plans</h3> <p>If your employer offers retirement benefits (such as contribution matching), then take advantage of this free money; your future self will thank you for it. You'll want to invest at least as much as the company match.</p> <p>Ask about what sort of 401K, 403(b), 457, or pension plans your employer offers. This will allow you to take advantage of as much of the employer's contribution as possible. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-steps-to-starting-a-retirement-plan-in-your-30s?ref=seealso">8 Steps to Starting a Retirement Plan in Your 30s</a>)</p> <h3>Self-Employed Options</h3> <p>Did you know that 28% of the nearly 15 million self-employed Americans are <a href="http://www.amtd.com/English/newsroom/research-and-story-ideas/Self-Employed-Survey/">not saving for retirement</a> at all? Sure, it can be difficult to set aside money for retirement when you can barely pay your business expenses as it is. However, it is imperative that you save what you can now to take advantage of compound interest and to ensure you are prepared for retirement.</p> <p>Self-employed individuals have <a href="https://www.irs.gov/Retirement-Plans/Retirement-Plans-for-Self-Employed-People">further retirement savings options</a>, such as the SEP-IRA, SIMPLE IRA, and Individual or Solo 401K. These have higher contribution limits so that you can have a more sizable retirement savings. These accounts will allow you to save for retirement, while enjoying an up-front tax break and tax-deferred saving.</p> <h2>When in Doubt, Ask a Pro</h2> <p>If you aren't sure about which retirement account is right for you, it's time to speak with a financial adviser. They can help you make informed decisions based on your financial situation and retirement goals. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/do-you-need-a-financial-planner?ref=seealso">Do You Need a Financial Planner?</a>)</p> <p><em>Do you have other tips for choosing the right retirement plan? Please share your thoughts in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-retirement-account-is-right-for-you">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-for-retirement-when-you-are-unemployed">How to Save for Retirement When You Are Unemployed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-sep-ira-is-how-the-self-employed-do-retirement-like-a-boss">The SEP-IRA Is How the Self-Employed Do Retirement Like a BOSS</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-simple-guide-to-rolling-over-all-of-your-401ks-and-iras">A Simple Guide to Rolling Over All of Your 401Ks and IRAs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-why-a-roth-ira-may-be-better-than-your-401k">4 Reasons Why a Roth IRA May be Better Than Your 401(k)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-warning-signs-youre-sabotaging-your-nest-egg">6 Warning Signs You&#039;re Sabotaging Your Nest Egg</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Retirement 401k Roth IRA saving money self-employment traditional ira Thu, 21 Apr 2016 09:30:24 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1691583 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Signs You Probably Need an Accountant http://www.wisebread.com/5-signs-you-probably-need-an-accountant <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-signs-you-probably-need-an-accountant" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000021395191.jpg" alt="Woman learning she probably needs an accountant" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Do you dread filing your income taxes each year? Does preparing your taxes take weeks of your time? And once you've sent your papers to the IRS, do you have the sneaking suspicion that you might not have taken all the deductions to which you are entitled?</p> <p>You might need to hire an accountant.</p> <p>&quot;Hiring an accountant depends on whether your knowledge, time, and money are best spent on bookkeeping, loan application, and tax preparation, or whether you have higher priorities,&quot; says Valrie Chambers, associate professor of taxation and accounting at Stetson University in Celebration, Florida. &quot;A business owner who excels at sales should probably use her time increasing sales rather than learning and doing accounting. That strategy is just more profitable for the business.&quot;</p> <p>Here are five signs that you need to hire an accountant.</p> <h2>1. You Owe the Government a Lot of Money Each Year</h2> <p>Taxes become complicated when you work for yourself or run your own business. Depending upon how much you earn, you'll have to pay estimated quarterly tax payments four times every calendar year &mdash; January 15, April 15, June 15, and September 15. These payments are supposed to guarantee that you won't owe the federal and state governments thousands of dollars each year in taxes.</p> <p>But if you find that when you file your income taxes each April 15 you do owe the state and federal government $3,000, $4,000, $6,000, or more, you're doing something wrong. An accountant can help you determine the quarterly tax payments you should be making to ensure that you're not hit with a huge tax bill every April 15.</p> <h2>2. You're Worried That You're Missing Big Deductions</h2> <p>Yes, hiring an accountant takes money. But doing so can also <em>save </em>you money. An accountant can prepare your annual income tax returns to make sure that you're not missing out on any important deductions for your household or your business. Missed deductions can cost you thousands of dollars each year in taxes.</p> <h2>3. It Takes You Days to Complete Your Taxes</h2> <p>Filing your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-clever-tax-shelters-anyone-can-use">income taxes</a> isn't necessarily easy. But it shouldn't be a draining chore, either. If your life has gotten complicated &mdash; maybe you've started your own consulting business on the side, perhaps you've adopted and are struggling to understand how the adoption tax credit works, maybe you're not sure how to deduct the bills for a serious medical procedure &mdash; you can bet that your income taxes have, too.</p> <p>If it is taking you a full week to complete your taxes, it might be time to think about hiring an accountant. You just have to determine how important your time is: Would you rather spend your time earning more money or poring over your tax forms?</p> <h2>4. You Own Rental Real Estate</h2> <p>Renting an apartment or two is a great way to earn passive income. But doing so can also complicate your finances. That's why it makes sense to hire an accountant to make sure that you don't miss any important tax deductions related to rental income, and that you file all the paperwork necessary when working as a landlord.</p> <p>&quot;There comes a point when personal tax software is not sophisticated enough to take into account the complexities of real estate investments,&quot; says David Reiss, professor of law and research director for the Center for Urban Business Entrepreneurship at Brooklyn Law School in New York City. &quot;If a taxpayer has multiple properties that have both a personal and investment component, tax software may not be able to accept all of the relevant inputs and generate the correct output.&quot;</p> <h2>5. You've Never Been Able to Balance Your Checkbook</h2> <p>If you're struggled for years to balance your own checkbook &mdash; if overdraft charges from your bank aren't a rare enough occurrence &mdash; it might be time to invest in an accountant, especially if you've started your own business. It's bad enough to struggle with your personal finances, and you don't want to operate a business that doesn't have its books balanced.</p> <p>Chambers recommends that you meet with several accountants &mdash; she recommends that you only work with Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) &mdash; before hiring one. Ask accountants how long they've been in business, whether they've worked with clients at your income level, how much they charge, and what services they'll provide. Ask, too, for referrals from accountants' current clients.</p> <p>&quot;Meet with the CPA to see if you are comfortable sharing your information with this firm,&quot; Chambers says. &quot;CPAs should be forthcoming about their fees. When they are hired, they normally spell out what they will do for those fees in an engagement letter. Finding an accountant who is right for you is part research, part comfort level.&quot;</p> <p><em>When did you realize that you needed an accountant?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-signs-you-probably-need-an-accountant">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-amazing-outrageous-and-just-plain-weird-tax-deductions">20 amazing, outrageous and just plain weird tax deductions</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-common-tax-mistakes-we-need-to-stop-making">5 Common Tax Mistakes We Need to Stop Making</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-freelancers-and-side-giggers-need-to-know-about-income-taxes">What Freelancers and Side Giggers Need to Know About Income Taxes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-your-tax-preparer-makes-a-mistake">What to Do When Your Tax Preparer Makes a Mistake</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/35-bizarre-things-you-can-be-taxed-on">35 Bizarre Things You Can Be Taxed On</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Taxes accountants cpas deductions finance income taxes IRS self-employment Tue, 13 Oct 2015 13:00:32 +0000 Dan Rafter 1586108 at http://www.wisebread.com The SEP-IRA Is How the Self-Employed Do Retirement Like a BOSS http://www.wisebread.com/the-sep-ira-is-how-the-self-employed-do-retirement-like-a-boss <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-sep-ira-is-how-the-self-employed-do-retirement-like-a-boss" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_holding_nest_egg_000020513200.jpg" alt="Learning how self-employed do retirement with SEP-IRA" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Self-employed? The odds are high that you aren't saving enough for your retirement years. A 2013 survey by TD Ameritrade found that nearly 70% of self-employed individuals weren't saving regularly for retirement &mdash; and 28% weren't saving anything at all. Those are alarming numbers. But they don't surprise ReKeithen Miller, certified financial planner with Palisades Hudson Financial Group in Atlanta.</p> <p>&quot;You hear stories about employees with traditional full-time jobs struggling to save enough for retirement. And they have 401K plans already established for them. They just have to sign up,&quot; Miller says. &quot;Just imagine how difficult it can be for self-employed people to save enough.&quot;</p> <p>That's where a Simplified Employee Pension &mdash; better known as a SEP-IRA &mdash; can help. It's an excellent <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-for-retirement-without-a-401k">retirement savings option</a>&nbsp;for the self-employed.</p> <h2>The Basics of a SEP-IRA</h2> <p>A SEP-IRA works much like a traditional IRA. Self-employed individuals can deposit their savings into an account and then watch their earnings grow on a tax-deferred basis until withdrawal. This means that you if you deposit $10,000 of the money you earn as self-employed worker into your SEP-IRA, you won't have to pay taxes on this income until you withdraw it.</p> <p>Like a traditional IRA, you won't face any penalties for withdrawing money once you hit age 59&frac12;. If you withdraw sooner, though, not only will you have to pay taxes on your distribution, you will also have to pay an additional penalty tax of 10% on the money you withdraw.</p> <p>One important change from a traditional IRA, though, is the amount of money you can contribute. You can deposit 20% of your net business income for the year or a total amount of $53,000 &mdash; whichever is less &mdash; into a SEP-IRA for 2015. By contrast, you're only allowed to contribute a maximum of $5,500 &mdash; $6,500 if you are 50 or older &mdash; into a traditional IRA each year.</p> <h2>Creating the Retirement Savings Habit</h2> <p>So why do so few self-employed individuals save regularly for retirement? Miller says that self-employed workers are often under stress, worrying about irregular income streams and scraping together enough for estimated income-tax payments.</p> <p>This means that saving for retirement too often becomes less of a priority.</p> <p>&quot;When you are self-employed, you have a lot to think about,&quot; Miller says. &quot;You have to get your own health insurance. You have to set a marketing budget for your business. You might have to deal with employees. Saving for retirement is not one of the top things on the list, even though it should be.&quot;</p> <p>Others might worry that they don't have enough extra income to make a dent in their retirement-savings shortfall. But Miller says that this thinking is misguided.</p> <p>&quot;Something is better than nothing,&quot; Miller says. &quot;It's better to save what you can than to not save anything at all.&quot;</p> <p>Other self-employed individuals worry that starting a SEP-IRA will take time that they need to instead devote to running and growing their businesses. Again, though, this thinking is incorrect, Miller explained. &quot;Setting up a SEP-IRA is easy,&quot; he said. Individuals can quickly set up a SEP-IRA in minutes by calling their local bank or a national financial services company.</p> <p>And once individuals have a SEP-IRA up and running, they aren't required to make any specific amount of contributions each year. You can contribute $25,000 one year, no dollars the next, and $9,000 a third year. There is no required minimum contribution to a SEP-IRA.</p> <h2>Where to Sign Up</h2> <p>Now that you're interested in retirement investing via a SEP-IRA, you should know that there are several online services you can use to open an account. Many of these allow you to sign-up and make contributions online or by phone, simplifying the process. These services range from traditional brokers to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-trust-your-money-with-these-4-popular-financial-robo-advisers">robo-advisers</a>, each with varying perks and fees, so pay attention to the details. Some sample services include:</p> <ul> <li>Automated investment service, <a target="_blank" href="http://track.flexlinks.com/a.ashx?foid=1029882.1559546&amp;fot=9999&amp;foc=1" rel="nofollow">Betterment offers a SEP-IRA</a> with no transaction or trade fees. They also offer 4 months to 1 year free, depending on your deposit.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="https://www.merrilledge.com/small-business/sep-ira">MerrillEdge </a>offers a SEP-IRA with no program or administrative fees. Trades may cost $6.95 per transaction, however.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Online broker giants <a href="https://www.fidelity.com/retirement-ira/small-business/sep-ira">Fidelity</a> and <a href="https://investor.vanguard.com/what-we-offer/small-business/sep?WT.srch=1">Vanguard</a> also offer SEP-IRAs with no set-up fees. These services do charge for trades, however.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>A number of credit unions and banks also offer SEP-IRAs; check with your local provider for details and online account availability.</li> </ul> <p>The lesson here? It's time to start saving in a SEP-IRA today.</p> <p><em>Are you making contributions to a SEP-IRA?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-sep-ira-is-how-the-self-employed-do-retirement-like-a-boss">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-self-employed-persons-guide-to-getting-credit">The Self-Employed Person&#039;s Guide to Getting Credit</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-steps-to-starting-a-retirement-plan-in-your-30s">8 Steps to Starting a Retirement Plan in Your 30s</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-simple-guide-to-retirement-plans-for-the-self-employed">A Simple Guide to Retirement Plans for the Self-Employed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-boost-your-odds-of-retiring-early">5 Ways to Boost Your Odds of Retiring Early</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/stop-making-these-10-bogus-retirement-savings-excuses">Stop Making These 10 Bogus Retirement Savings Excuses</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Entrepreneurship Retirement 401k freelancers full-time jobs pension savings self-employment SEP-IRA Fri, 09 Oct 2015 11:00:47 +0000 Dan Rafter 1580103 at http://www.wisebread.com 22 Websites That Will Pay You to Write for Them http://www.wisebread.com/22-websites-that-will-pay-you-to-write-for-them <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/22-websites-that-will-pay-you-to-write-for-them" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_working_from_home_000025337892.jpg" alt="Woman finding surprising websites that will pay her to write" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You'd like to get paid to write online, but many websites are looking for contributors with experience. If you don't have significant experience, what can you do?</p> <p>Good news! There are a lot of websites, small and large, that will pay you regardless of experience. If you've ever looked at a greeting card and thought, &quot;I could do that,&quot; written a poem or short fiction, thought you could do a better job on a research based article than what you've read online, are an expert hobbyist or more, you could be earning hundreds or thousands in extra income a year.</p> <p>Below is a list of 22 sites that pay for your writing. It isn't comprehensive, but is merely meant to provide a wide range of examples of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-easy-ways-to-make-extra-money-blogging">paid writing opportunities</a>. Use it as a guide to help you find many more sites that will pay you, too!</p> <h2>1. ADDitude</h2> <p><a href="http://www.additudemag.com/adhd/writers-guidelines.html">ADDitude</a> is an online magazine is devoted to providing strategies and support for people who are living with ADHD and other learning disabilities. Though they typically accept guest contributions from journalists and mental health professionals, they are also looking for writings from lay people who have personal experience with ADHD and other learning disabilities. Articles should be no more than 2000 words, and payment amount is calculated based on many factors including length, and experience with the topic.</p> <h2>2. Ashtray Blog</h2> <p>Vaping is all the rage right now. So if you're an enthusiast, why not consider getting paid to write an article for the <a href="http://www.ecigarettedirect.co.uk/ashtray-blog/write-for-the-ashtray-blog">Ashtray Blog</a>? They are looking for those that focus on vaping, harm reduction, electronic cigarettes, or similar related topics. The pay rate varies, but typically starts at $50 for a shorter piece (think 500 words) that doesn't require a ton of research.</p> <h2>3. Alive Now</h2> <p>The bi-monthly devotional magazine <a href="http://alivenow.upperroom.org/writers/">Alive Now</a> will pay a minimum of $35 for a submission that is accepted. They provide the themes, which can help you structure your submission.</p> <h2>4. BabyFit</h2> <p>Owned by SparkPeople, a popular online preventative healthcare website, <a href="http://babyfit.sparkpeople.com/articles.asp?id=775">BabyFit</a> focuses on fitness and nutrition when pregnant and as a parent. If you can write a well-researched article between 500 and 1200 words, you may be interested in submitting one to this site. They pay contributors between $25 and $90 for their expertise.</p> <h2>5. Blue Mountain Arts</h2> <p>If you can write contemporary prose or poetry focusing on personal experience, check out <a href="http://www.sps.com/help/writers_guidelines.html">Blue Mountain Arts</a>. This greeting card company will pay you $300 for exclusive rights to your poem, or $50 for one time use in a book.</p> <h2>6. Classic Toy Trains</h2> <p>Obsessed with toy trains? Could you write about them? Well, <a href="http://ctt.trains.com/magazine/submission-guidelines/2006/06/ctt-submission-guidelines">Classic Toy Trains</a> accepts articles on this very topic and they pay $75 per page.</p> <h2>7. Chicken Soup for the Soul</h2> <p><a href="http://www.chickensoup.com/story-submissions/story-guidelines">Chicken Soup for the Soul</a>, which is also responsible for the best-selling books with that same name, will pay you $200 for an &quot;inspirational, true story or poem about ordinary people having extraordinary experiences,&quot; or $100 for a devotional. Submissions should be no more than 1200 words in length.</p> <h2>8. Comstock</h2> <p>Adult humor greeting card company <a href="http://comstockmarketplace.com/guidelines.php?osCsid=h1lc4vllps64q4glctd7uscvi3">Comstock</a> is looking for ideas and will pay you $50 for each one accepted.</p> <h2>9. Developer Tutorials</h2> <p>If you're knowledgeable about computer programming and design, and can write a tutorial, this website might be for you. <a href="http://www.developertutorials.com/write-for-us/">Developer Tutorials</a> is looking for list-based articles and will pay for accepted contributions. The rate depends on many factors, such as length and quality of the tutorial, as well as the demand for your particular lesson.</p> <h2>10. Fantus Paper Products</h2> <p>Their greeting card division, <a href="http://www.psg-fpp.com/creative_guidelines.htm">P.S. Greetings Inc</a>., which manufactures &quot;everyday&quot; greeting cards and has an extensive Christmas program, is accepting submissions to be featured on their rack and box set cards. Compensation is decided on a case-by-case basis.</p> <h2>11. FineScale Modeler Magazine</h2> <p>If you enjoy building or know a lot about model airplanes, cars, ships, etc. then you could earn some extra money writing about them at <a href="http://www.finescale.com/magazine/contribute-to-fsm/2004/01/submit-to-finescale-modeler-magazine">FineScale Modeler</a>. This magazine pays for articles between 750&ndash;2500 words, and the payment amount is based on the length of the article.</p> <h2>12. Girl's Life</h2> <p>If you have a daughter, sister, niece, or female friend who is younger than 18 and likes to write, create poetry, or short fiction, she can earn money if her submission to <a href="http://www.girlslife.com/page/Writers-Guidelines.aspx">Girl's Life</a> is accepted. Payment amount is decided on a case-by-case basis.</p> <h2>13. Glimmer Train</h2> <p><a href="http://www.glimmertrain.com/writguid1.html">Glimmer Train</a> has been devoted to discovering new writers since 1990 and pays up to $700 for first publication rights for accepted stories.</p> <h2>14. High Country News</h2> <p><a href="http://www.hcn.org/about/submissions">High Country News</a> is a non-profit magazine focusing on the American West (&quot;people, politics, culture, and aesthetic values&quot;). If you like writing on these topics, they will pay you .50 to $1.50 per word (yes, per word) depending on your writing experience and their experience with you. If a submission is accepted and they decide not to run it, you will receive a 25% kill fee (a percentage of what you would have received had the article run).</p> <h2>15. Oatmeal Studios</h2> <p>This greeting card company is looking for humorous greeting card ideas, so if you have a knack for that, send them to <a href="http://www.oatmealstudios.com/html5/pages/art_guide.html">Oatmeal Studios</a>. They'll pay $75 for each idea that is accepted.</p> <h2>16. The Hairpin</h2> <p><a href="http://thehairpin.com/about/">The Hairpin</a> focuses on women and features (mostly) women writers. The topics are varied and wide-ranging, from celebrity culture to tips for creating a great cover letter. They are looking for original, unpublished content, and pay contributors for their work.</p> <h2>17. BlogMutt</h2> <p><a href="https://www.blogmutt.com/become-a-writer">BlogMutt</a> produces blog posts for businesses in just about every industry imaginable, from pet boutiques to tech services. If you can write on a wide variety of topics &mdash; especially in the tech industry &mdash; you'll have a lot of available work. There are no deadlines or assignments, so you can write at your own pace. Customers provide the topics they need blog posts on, writers submit posts on the topics they choose, and the customers pick the posts they want. There&rsquo;s no guaranteed sale, but most writers have a 90% acceptance rate.</p> <h2>18. Smart Alex</h2> <p>Adult humor greeting card company, <a href="http://www.smartalexinc.com/pages/artist_submission/124.php">Smart Alex</a>, is looking for submissions that are &quot;funny, edgy, and risque&hellip;topical, witty, smart, ironic, or sexually suggestive.&quot; Compensation is discussed once a submission is accepted.</p> <h2>19. Smithsonian Magazine</h2> <p>Recognized for its libraries devoted to exhibits in in science, art, history, and pop culture, <a href="http://www.smithsonianmag.com/contact/article-submit-print-magazine/">Smithsonian Magazine</a> will pay authors whose submissions are accepted. Hard numbers are hard to come by, and as you can imagine, they receive a lot of submissions, but it looks like an article could earn up to $1500 for a piece they like.</p> <h2>20. Tales to Go</h2> <p><a href="http://talestogo.travelerstales.com/about/">Tales to Go</a> is a paid subscription website and book publisher focusing on stories about travel. They are looking for personal, non-fiction stories and anecdotes, especially to unfamiliar areas. Stories should be between 1000 and 3000 words. Works that are accepted will receive a $50 honorarium.</p> <h2>21. The Secret Place</h2> <p><a href="http://www.judsonpress.com/catalog_sp_guidelines.cfm">The Secret Place</a> is a quarterly devotional made up exclusively of freelance writers. They pay $20 per accepted meditation devotion which should be about 150-200 words.</p> <h2>22. The Sun</h2> <p><a href="http://thesunmagazine.org/about/submission_guidelines/writing">The Sun</a> is an ad-free paid subscription website that focuses on many aspects of the human experience. They pay contributors anywhere from $300 to $2500 for their work and are looking for essays, interviews, fiction, or poetry. They even throw in a complimentary one-year subscription to their magazine.</p> <p>This list really is the tip of the iceberg, and many writers, including myself, have had positive experiences and enjoyed the extra income. Let's grow this list. Let me know about your favorite sites in the comments below!</p> <p><em>[Editor's Note: A helpful reader pointed out that an entry in this list was no longer paying (ReachSelf). We have replaced that outlet with another paying market.]</em></p> <p><em>Have you earned extra cash with your writing? Where'd you sell it?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</p> <script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F22-websites-that-will-pay-you-to-write-for-them%3Fref%3Dseealso&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F22%2520Websites%2520That%2520Will%2520Pay%2520You%2520to%2520Write%2520for%2520Them_0.jpg&amp;description=22%20Websites%20That%20Will%20Pay%20You%20to%20Write%20for%20Them"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/22%20Websites%20That%20Will%20Pay%20You%20to%20Write%20for%20Them_0.jpg" alt="22 Websites That Will Pay You to Write for Them" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kim-owens">Kim Owens</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-websites-that-will-pay-you-to-write-for-them">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-life-skills-every-freelancer-needs">8 Life Skills Every Freelancer Needs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-money-as-a-chat-or-forum-moderator">How to Make Money as a Chat or Forum Moderator</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-easy-ways-to-make-extra-money-blogging">5 Easy Ways to Make Extra Money Blogging</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-biggest-mistakes-freelancers-make">The 5 Biggest Mistakes Freelancers Make</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-terrible-work-from-home-jobs-you-should-avoid">8 Terrible Work-From-Home &quot;Jobs&quot; You Should Avoid</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Job Hunting blogging freelance self-employment telecommute work from home writing Thu, 01 Oct 2015 11:00:35 +0000 Kim Owens 1571537 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Ways to Grow Your Savings Without a Steady Paycheck http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-grow-your-savings-without-a-steady-paycheck <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-ways-to-grow-your-savings-without-a-steady-paycheck" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_woman_piggy_bank_000031080258.jpg" alt="Woman learning ways to grow her savings without a steady paycheck" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you're a freelancer or part-time employee, not having a regular salary can disrupt your progress toward big financial goals. Money fluctuations can mean you either have to stop the savings transfers, or withdraw money out of the account to cover bills.</p> <p>But saving money without a regular paycheck isn't impossible, and with these tips you can learn to create a savings habit that sticks!</p> <h2>1. Separate All Your Savings Goals</h2> <p>Even if you have a separate savings account, it's too tempting to have all the money in one account while simply allocating the funds to different savings goals. For this reason I recommend <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-things-to-consider-before-you-open-an-online-savings-account">opening a new savings account</a> for each individual goal.</p> <p>My husband and I recently did this as an experiment, and for two months in a row we've had a surplus of money in our bank accounts, and have been able to save money toward all of our goals. And we're both self-employed so you know how difficult this can be!</p> <p>While it is possible to have too many accounts, this strategy works for us, and has allowed us to pay all of our bills, self-employment taxes, and save extra money toward various specific goals.</p> <h2>2. Pay Yourself a Regular Salary</h2> <p>As a freelancer, temp, or someone who works on commissions, it's still important to pay yourself a &quot;salary&quot; on a regular basis. I deposit a regular salary from my business account to the household account every Monday &mdash; no matter how little or how much my freelance business brings in.</p> <p>Giving yourself a regular &quot;paycheck&quot; will help combat the inconsistent income that comes with being self-employed. It may take a few months for your budget to adjust to the changes, but it can drastically <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-improve-your-finances-in-5-minutes">improve your finances</a> and allow you to finally get into the habit of saving money.</p> <h2>3. Try a Microsaving Tool</h2> <p>Microsaving is when you save extremely small amounts of money &mdash; like $2 or $5 a week. As your budget adjusts to the savings, and you begin to see your small balance grow, you can increase the savings amounts. Next thing you know, you've saved a couple hundred dollars that can be used towards anything you want.</p> <p>To make it even easier to save money without thinking, there are several different <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-microsaving-tools-to-help-you-start-saving-now">microsaving apps</a> available that will put saving money into automatic mode.</p> <ul> <li><a href="https://digit.co/">Digit</a> is a popular tool that allows you to start saving money via text message. Once you link your account, Digit will start withdrawing a few dollars every week and deposit into your new Digit account, based on your bank balance and only if you can afford it.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="https://www.acorns.com/">Acorns</a> is a microsaving investment tool that helps beginner investors or students get their feet wet in the market. Everyone has to start somewhere and Acorn's round-up payment withdrawals makes saving money very easy.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li><a href="https://www.smartypig.com/">SmartyPig</a> allows you to create individual accounts for each savings goal and keeps you updated on the progress. You can also earn rewards, cash back, and gift cards as incentives to save money.</li> </ul> <h2>4. Find What Motivates You to Save</h2> <p>What motivates you to save money? Are you a competitive person who likes to turn saving money into a challenge? Find a few friends who will commit to a savings competition with you. Whoever reaches the goal first gets a free dinner, night out, or other incentive (paid for by the losers, of course!).</p> <p>Are you an artist or visual person? Try mapping your progress by coloring in circles for each $50 or $100 you save. Whether it's goal tracking, paying off debt, or saving for a particular event, try coloring your way to reaching your goal. And when you've reached your goal you can hang the artwork in your home as a motivational reminder.</p> <h2>5. Join a Savings Challenge</h2> <p>Much like a diet helps you jumpstart your weight loss plan or workout regimen, a savings challenge can help you get your spending under control, and create a regular savings habit.</p> <p>There are lots of different challenges available. You can go on a 14-day spending diet, a 60-day&nbsp;<a href="http://www.carefulcents.com/cash-budget-challenge/">cash budget challenge</a>, a year-long shopping ban. Last year I participated in a 12-month money challenge from inspiration I found on Pinterest. But the options are basically limitless, so start out small and then increase the challenge as you become more comfortable with it.</p> <p>Experiment with different methods and test out strategies based on your money personality and saving style. Don't be afraid to try out new ideas to see how they work for you.</p> <p><em>How do you save money without a regular paycheck? Share your best tips!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-smith">Carrie Smith</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-grow-your-savings-without-a-steady-paycheck">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-got-a-raise-now-what">You Got a Raise! Now What?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-step-by-step-guide-to-creating-your-emergency-fund">A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating Your Emergency Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-often-do-you-get-your-paycheck">How often do you get your paycheck?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/be-careful-who-you-owe-heres-who-can-garnish-your-wages">Be Careful Who You Owe: Here&#039;s Who Can Garnish Your Wages</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/meet-meg-favreau-our-senior-editor">Meet Meg Favreau, Our Senior Editor</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance freelancing paychecks savings account savings plan self-employment Thu, 10 Sep 2015 15:00:27 +0000 Carrie Smith 1553947 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Ways Millennials Can Become Bosses Sooner http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-millennials-can-become-bosses-sooner <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-ways-millennials-can-become-bosses-sooner" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/millennial_woman_at_work_000020810378.jpg" alt="Millennial woman learning how to become a boss sooner" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Our generation receives a lot of flack for being spoiled and entitled, but there's no denying that we're ambitious. We want to be in control of our lives and careers, and for some, this means becoming the person who calls the shots. The best way to do that is through entrepreneurship (I had to slip that in there), but if you're hellbent on taking the corporate path, here are five ways you can claim your rightful position at the top faster than all those naysayers think you can.</p> <h2>1. Volunteer for Leadership Roles</h2> <p>To move up faster and become a boss sooner, you have to show your employer from the very beginning that you're capable of a leadership role. This isn't the time to second-guess yourself or hide in the background.</p> <p>Jonathan Coughtrey, content manager of the personal finance blog <a href="http://www.actioneconomics.com/">Action Economics!</a>, advises volunteering for leadership roles whenever there's an opportunity.</p> <p>&quot;I became a supervisor over a crew of six people in my company when I was 23,&quot; he says. &quot;This year &mdash; at age 28 &mdash; I was promoted to management and I am responsible for the day-to-day implementation of all the work on our project, which encompasses 75 people per shift.&quot;</p> <p>If you're young and fresh out of college, your boss may underestimate your ability and unfairly question whether you can effectively lead or manage a team. Volunteering for leadership-type assignments, however, showcases your abilities, giving your employer the opportunity to see you in action. You might have knowledge and traits that some senior employees lack, putting you in line for promotions sooner.</p> <p>&quot;I had to learn more about our procedures than the other crew members, and this knowledge helped me become a subject matter expert and go-to person,&quot; Coughtrey continues. &quot;Upper management noticed this and when opportunities opened up, my name was on the top of the list.&quot;</p> <h2>2. Develop the Qualities of a Boss</h2> <p>It takes more than education and stellar performance reviews to become a boss early in your career; you also need to act like a boss. Employers look at the big picture when deciding whether to promote an employee to a management or supervisory role. Do you think you have what it takes to lead people and contribute to the company's success?</p> <p>Some Millennials make the mistake of only setting their eyes on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-successful-millennials-do">becoming a boss</a>, and they fail to consider what it actually takes to get to this point.</p> <p>&quot;Focus on what traits and accomplishments are needed to get to where you want to be,&quot; says Brock Murray, co-owner and director of web marketing with seoplus+, a digital marketing agency. &quot;A good boss leads by example, communicates well, shows passion, discipline, organization, creativity, and goes above and beyond the status quo.&quot;</p> <p>Learn how to embody these traits and you'll not only win the boss title, you'll also win respect and become an effective leader.</p> <h2>3. Learn How to Build Face-to-Face Relationships</h2> <p>As a tech-savvy generation, you're a pro at e-mail, text messaging, and social media, to the point where you might not remember the last time you picked up the phone and had an actual conversation. (I'm with you, brothers and sisters; I rarely use the phone for voice activities myself.) However, while knowledge of technology and the digital world is highly beneficial in today's corporate world, being a boss requires familiarity with all types of communication. People of older generations often prefer face-to-face communication, so you have to be adaptable.</p> <p>Tim Elmore, founder and leader of Growing Leaders, a leadership prep program for students, explains the danger of relying too heavily on technology.</p> <p>&quot;Leaders of younger generations are from the most social generation in history,&quot; he says. &quot;They are in constant contact with peers and family through iMessages and social media. But, they are also highly isolated because so much of their relational contact is through technology. This has led to poor people skills, low emotional intelligence, and the inability to handle interpersonal challenges.&quot;</p> <p>This doesn't imply ditching social media or text messaging, but at the same time, don't be afraid to take advantage of opportunities to meet face-to-face or network, which can improve your communication and people skills, and help you become a well-rounded boss.</p> <h2>4. Ask for What You Want</h2> <p>Because of your age, your employer might think becoming a boss is the farthest thing from your mind. So even if he knows you're capable of this role, he might hold off offering you a promotion. Additionally, you might hesitate expressing your desire to move up for fear of coming off as overconfident or arrogant. But according to career and leadership coach Kamara Toffolo, who's also a Millennial, you're only holding yourself back by keeping quiet.</p> <p>&quot;Often your own boss has no idea you want to be a boss yourself, so have the conversation,&quot; she advises.</p> <p>Toffolo also believes it's important for Millennials to realize they don't have to sit idly on the sidelines and think hard work alone will get them to the top. This doesn't always work.</p> <p>&quot;Ask them how you can groom and prepare yourself for a management role and become an attractive candidate,&quot; she says.</p> <h2>5. Pave Your Own Path</h2> <p>Of course, advancing up the career ladder at work isn't the only way to become a boss. If you're feeling unfulfilled, boxed in, or like you're losing your mind, don't be afraid to jump ship and become the boss of your own company.</p> <p>&quot;The biggest mistake most Millennials make is assuming that the path their parents took will still work for them. Starting in the mailroom and working your way up to CEO just doesn't work anymore,&quot; explains Nick Fox, career coach and founder of <a href="http://www.successhacking.com">Success Hacking</a>. &quot;It wasn't until I jumped ship to run my own business that I realized that the greatest way to become a boss is to forge your own path.&quot;</p> <p>If you're living at home or have minimum expenses, or if you don't have a spouse or children, now might be as good a time as ever to build a business from the ground up and be in complete control of your income and time. It's much harder to take a leap when you're older and carry more responsibilities.</p> <p>&quot;When you're young, you have a lot of leeway to make mistakes,&quot; says Fox.</p> <p>In other words, the time is now.</p> <p><em>Are you a Millennial who's making moves to become his or her own boss? Share your story in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-millennials-can-become-bosses-sooner">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-ugly-truth-of-workplace-success-popularity-still-matters">The Ugly Truth of Workplace Success: Popularity Still Matters</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-find-freelance-clients-part-one">How to Find Freelance Clients - Part One</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-absolute-worst-ways-to-ask-for-a-raise">The Absolute Worst Ways to Ask for a Raise</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-one-skill-can-make-you-a-better-boss">This One Skill Can Make You a Better Boss</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-millennials-have-changed-money-so-far">6 Ways Millennials Have Changed Money (So Far)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building bosses entrepreneurship millennials promotions self-employment young Wed, 09 Sep 2015 21:00:29 +0000 Mikey Rox 1547923 at http://www.wisebread.com Avoid IRS Penalties With This Simple Estimated Payment Strategy http://www.wisebread.com/avoid-irs-penalties-with-this-simple-estimated-payment-strategy <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/avoid-irs-penalties-with-this-simple-estimated-payment-strategy" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_doing_taxes_000018891609.jpg" alt="Man saving money by paying estimated tax payments" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>As an employee, your employer withholds taxes from every paycheck for the IRS. But, what happens when you're self-employed? If you are self-employed or have income aside from your salary, then you may want to pay estimated taxes every quarter.</p> <p>The IRS wants you to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-clever-tax-shelters-anyone-can-use">pay your income taxes</a> as you earn money, which is why they require quarterly payments. And you might even save some money by doing so. Still, many people file yearly, instead, and pay a penalty. Consider the following eight key facts you should understand before deciding on which schedule to pay.</p> <h2>1. Understand the Underpayment Penalty</h2> <p>If you've underpaid taxes as of the annual April 15 filing date, then you may have to pay a penalty for underpayment. The penalty is imposed on the amount you owe for the number of days it remains unpaid. You can expect a steep penalty of an annualized 4% as long as your payment is late. For example, if you owe $10,000, you can expect an annualized underpayment penalty of $400. The longer it takes for you to pay off the debt, the more the fees will accrue. This may seem like a hefty fine for some people, but others prefer to take the penalty so that they don't need to worry about making estimated tax payments every quarter.</p> <p>Keep in mind that it's very important you pay each quarterly payment by the due date. You can easily pay online, over the phone, through direct transfer, with a debit or credit card, or by using a check or money order.</p> <h2>2. Is the Penalty Worth It?</h2> <p>Most people agree that paying the penalty simply isn't worth it. While you can put off all your payments until April 15th, avoiding your estimated tax payments will rack up more in penalties then you could likely make by placing the money in a savings account. Paying hundreds of dollars for a penalty that can be easily avoided will probably just hurt you in the end.</p> <h2>3. Calculate Your Estimated Tax Payments</h2> <p>The IRS requires that you pay at least 90% of your taxes during the year, which can be difficult to calculate precisely. For a quick way to calculate your payments, pay at least 100% of the taxes owed on your previous year's return, split into four quarters. If your adjusted gross income is over $150,000, you will need to pay at least 110% of the tax you owed for last year's filing.</p> <p>Some services, like <a href="https://turbotax.intuit.com/">TurboTax</a>, will help you calculate how much you should pay each quarter, or you can complete <a href="http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f1040es.pdf">Form 1040-ES</a>. However, you will not necessarily pay the same amount every quarter. For instance, if you make a lot of money in one quarter, you will want to pay more on that quarter's estimated tax payment. If you think you may have underpaid and don't want to be subjected to the penalty, complete <a href="http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f2210.pdf">Form 2210</a> to determine if you will owe a penalty.</p> <h2>4. Know the Payment Due Dates</h2> <p>You will need to make payments four times a year, in the following intervals:</p> <ul> <li>Quarter 1: January 1 &ndash; March 31, Payment due 04/15<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Quarter 2: April 1 &ndash; May 31, Payment due 06/15<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Quarter 3: June 1 &ndash; August 31, Payment due 09/15<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Quarter 4: September 1 &ndash; December 31, Payment due 01/15</li> </ul> <h2>5. Additional Income Received</h2> <p>Most often, estimated tax payments are something self-employed workers need to worry about. However, you may also owe estimated taxes if you receive additional income, such as the following:</p> <ul> <li>interest,</li> <li>dividends,</li> <li>gains from sales of stock,</li> <li>business earnings,</li> <li>alimony.</li> </ul> <h2>6. Exceptions to the Rule</h2> <p>There are some exceptions when it comes to making quarterly payments. If any of the following apply to you, then you don't need to worry about estimated tax payments.</p> <ul> <li>You expect to owe less than $1,000 in taxes for the tax year.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You expect your federal income tax withholding to account for at least 90% of the tax you will owe for this tax year.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You expect your income tax withholding to be at least 100% of the tax from last year's return.</li> </ul> <h2>7. Apply Your Refund</h2> <p>If you receive a tax refund this year, consider applying it towards your quarterly estimated tax payments. This will help you to get a head start and allow you to pay less during the coming year.</p> <h2>8. Tax Installment Agreements</h2> <p>If you simply cannot afford to make the estimated tax payments, and are not able to pay your tax debt upfront, then you may want to consider tax installment agreements. This will allow you to set up a monthly payment plan with the IRS for the amount owed and you will have up to 72 months to pay the debt. While this will provide you more time, keep in mind that there is a fee to set this arrangement up and you will continue to accrue penalties and interest for as long as you're paying off your tax debt.</p> <p>If you're still unsure about what you owe and whether you should make the quarterly payments, refer to the IRS for more <a href="http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-&amp;-Self-Employed/Estimated-Taxes">information on estimated taxes</a>.</p> <p><em>Do you pay your taxes in installments?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/avoid-irs-penalties-with-this-simple-estimated-payment-strategy">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-when-your-tax-preparer-makes-a-mistake">What to Do When Your Tax Preparer Makes a Mistake</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-happens-if-you-dont-pay-your-taxes">Here&#039;s What Happens If You Don&#039;t Pay Your Taxes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-sep-ira-is-how-the-self-employed-do-retirement-like-a-boss">The SEP-IRA Is How the Self-Employed Do Retirement Like a BOSS</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-easy-steps-to-keeping-track-of-expenses-for-the-self-employed">Five Easy Steps to Keeping Track of Expenses for the Self-Employed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-penalty-free-ways-to-withdraw-money-from-your-retirement-account">7 Penalty-Free Ways to Withdraw Money From Your Retirement Account</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Taxes freelancers paying quarterly penalties self-employment Mon, 10 Aug 2015 13:00:20 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1514201 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Life Skills Every Freelancer Needs http://www.wisebread.com/8-life-skills-every-freelancer-needs <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-life-skills-every-freelancer-needs" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_freelancer_000057859604.jpg" alt="Man learning life skills every freelancer needs" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Eight years ago, I decided to ditch my commute, mothball my business casual wardrobe, and fully commit to building a freelance writing and content management business. With nearly 12 years of professional experience behind me, I knew I could handle the business basics of a freelance life. From networking to invoicing, and from marketing to tech support, I realized everything would be up to me &mdash; and (frighteningly) only me.</p> <p>How right I was. As I enter my ninth gloriously commute-free year, I can affirm that success is built around the following eight life skills every freelancer needs.</p> <h2>1. Communication</h2> <p>As with any other job, good communication is the linchpin between success and failure in freelancing. Networking, pitching new business, working with different teams every day, and keeping clients up-to-date all require proactive and professional communication skills.</p> <h2>2. Time Management</h2> <p>For most freelancers, work comes in unpredictable spurts. Being able to go from zero to 60 in a day or two is just part of the game. And when multiple projects all have back-to-back deadlines, staying sane means learning the secret of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-to-time-management-and-work-life-balance">effective time management</a>.</p> <h2>3. Negotiation</h2> <p>Freelancers must be able to establish fair work agreements and terms &mdash; terms that respect your skill and time and offer a competitive value to your clients. Getting the hang of it and negotiating with tact and confidence takes practice.</p> <h2>4. Organization</h2> <p>At this exact moment, I have four major new projects waiting in the wings &mdash; each with a different client. Keeping due dates, deliverables, meeting times, billing terms, and contact names straight takes masterful organization skills. If you don't have a Type A personality, do yourself a favor and explore some organization tools for businesses.</p> <h2>5. Scheduling</h2> <p>Many newbies eagerly accept every project that comes their way and never learn to gracefully push back on a deadline. But understanding how much work we can handle without sacrificing quality or breaking promises is critical to business success. When we get it wrong, first-time clients become one-time clients.</p> <h2>6. Self-Motivation</h2> <p>Since freelancers seldom have a boss looking over our shoulder, it's alarmingly easy for our workday to veer off track. A keen ability to self-motivate, stay focused, and not let short breaks turn into long distractions is essential for success.</p> <h2>7. Boundary Setting</h2> <p>For freelancers, there's no official beginning or end to the workday and not much separation between work, home, and social life. We have to defend our zen by setting clear boundaries. Successful freelancers know when to shut things off, walk away, and get back to the business of living.</p> <h2>8. Self-Awareness</h2> <p>As freelancers build a strong work history with a wide range of clients, one or two of those happy customers will inevitably extend a job offer. The security of traditional employment arrangements can be tempting; it takes profound self-awareness to know exactly what you want, guard your independence, and know when to say, &quot;Thank you, but no.&quot;</p> <p>Remember, freelancing is a science <em>and </em>an art. If you're just starting out, explore <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-all-successful-freelancers-do">what successful freelancers do</a> and develop your life skills as you develop your business.</p> <p><em>If you're a freelancer, what life skills have helped you the most? Which ones came naturally and which took conscious effort?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kentin-waits">Kentin Waits</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-life-skills-every-freelancer-needs">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-websites-that-will-pay-you-to-write-for-them">22 Websites That Will Pay You to Write for Them</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-freelancers-and-telecommuters-can-make-friends-and-network">11 Ways Freelancers and Telecommuters Can Make Friends and Network</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-i-learned-about-money-after-i-went-freelance">7 Things I Learned About Money After I Went Freelance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-biggest-mistakes-freelancers-make">The 5 Biggest Mistakes Freelancers Make</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-signs-its-time-to-close-your-business">5 Signs It&#039;s Time to Close Your Business</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building Entrepreneurship freelance self-employment small businesses telecommute work from home Tue, 07 Jul 2015 09:00:17 +0000 Kentin Waits 1481900 at http://www.wisebread.com The Straight Talk on Working From Home http://www.wisebread.com/the-straight-talk-on-working-from-home <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-straight-talk-on-working-from-home" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/6829315557_34a425683c_z.jpg" alt="man working at home" title="man working at home" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you don&rsquo;t work from home, I&rsquo;ve got some bad news &mdash; it doesn&rsquo;t involve sleeping in every day, then rolling out of bed to do some work in your PJs. I work from home. Actually, I&rsquo;m at home, working, right now. No PJs, though. And I&rsquo;m up at the same time I was when I worked in an office. I think the thing that many people forget about working from home is that regardless of whether you&rsquo;re sitting at a desk in your home office or typing away on the patio, it&rsquo;s still <em>working</em>. And, assuming you need to make money (like I do), there won&rsquo;t be a lot of leisure time. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-productivity-hacks-from-a-work-at-home-mom">10 Productivity Hacks From a Work-at-Home Mom</a>)</p> <p>If you&rsquo;re wondering what it&rsquo;s like to work from home or thinking about making the switch, here are some things to consider.</p> <h3>You&rsquo;re the Boss</h3> <p>When I tell people I work from home, the response I get most often is &ldquo;Oh, I could never do that &mdash; I&rsquo;d never get any work done!&rdquo; You&rsquo;d think that the desire to be productive and earn some money would be enough motivation to stay on task, but this isn&rsquo;t true for everybody. In my work as an editor, I&rsquo;m always surprised at how many full-time freelance writers blow deadlines and make all kinds of excuses about turning work in on time. It just goes to show you that some people will procrastinate even when their livelihood&rsquo;s at stake. Other writers are so productive, I can hardly keep up. I think it can all be chalked up to personality. When you work unsupervised, you get to manage your own time. That&rsquo;s a perk, but not for those who aren't able to keep themselves on task.</p> <h3>There Are Distractions</h3> <p>When you work in an office, everyone is supposed to be working. That usually means distractions are fairly minimal, or at least pertinent to the job. Not so at home. Neighbors knock at the door because they know I&rsquo;m home. Ditto with phone calls. Plus, when the laundry and chores are literally piling up around me, it can be hard to ignore them in favor of paid work. One distraction I don&rsquo;t have &mdash; kids. That&rsquo;s a whole other challenge that some people have to manage as well. I try to set some hours and spend them working, while <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-stay-focused-at-work">ignoring as many distractions as possible</a>. There will be distractions, though, so it's best to have a game plan about how to manage them.</p> <h3>You Still Need a Schedule</h3> <p>What I like about working from home is flexibility. My time is my own, which allows me to build a day that reflects what&rsquo;s important to me. I can pick people up from the airport, take a break to go for a run outside on a beautiful day, or visit with a friend who suddenly appears in town. That said, it&rsquo;s remarkable how quickly all the fun stuff can cut into work hours. Overall, I try to keep a pretty consistent schedule. And when there&rsquo;s nothing fun to do, I pile on as much work as I can stomach. That gives me some breathing room when I get a good reason to ditch my desk for the afternoon.</p> <h3>People Assume You Don&rsquo;t Work</h3> <p>If you work from home, many people will assume that you spend the day napping and watching TV. I haven&rsquo;t figured out how to be paid to do this yet, so it doesn't happen (but I&rsquo;ll keep you posted). The truth is, I&rsquo;d probably be lazier if I was working on someone else&rsquo;s time rather than my own.</p> <h3>Deductions Are a Good Thing...Sort Of</h3> <p>There are definitely some cost savings to working out of a home office: no commute, no business suits, no Starbucks latte. You can also <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/16-great-tax-deductions-you-may-have-overlooked">deduct some home and business expenses</a>. But there&rsquo;s one thing people forget about deductions, which is that you have to spend money to take them. As a result, having a ton of deductions isn&rsquo;t necessarily such a great thing. It just means you spent a lot of money to make money. You can also deduct some home expenses, such as Internet, telephone, and utility bills. The catch is you can only deduct the portion that&rsquo;s used for your work. And trust me, once you divide it all out, that deduction won&rsquo;t be nearly as exciting as you thought it would be.</p> <h3>You&rsquo;ll Work a Lot</h3> <p>When you work and relax on the same turf, it can be hard to figure out <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/setting-up-a-home-office-on-the-cheap">where work ends and home begins</a>. That tends to mean that I&rsquo;m often typing away on evenings and weekends, too, because if I can be making some money, I should be, right? Actually, no. Because the longer I work, the slower (and grumpier) I get. And that doesn&rsquo;t make for good writing &mdash; or a good life, for that matter.</p> <h3>It Can Be Lonely</h3> <p>I recently fell off my bike and hurt myself badly enough that I couldn&rsquo;t do any of the things I normally do to get myself out of the house, such as taking a run with my friends, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-find-free-or-cheap-yoga-classes">going to yoga</a>, or strolling the neighborhood with my boyfriend. This meant that I basically never left the house for an entire week. If you work from home &mdash; and I can&rsquo;t stress this enough &mdash; you need to find activities that will get you out of the house every day. Otherwise you will basically become a hermit. At home. In your PJs. And frankly, that&rsquo;s a bit sad.</p> <p>Working at home isn&rsquo;t for everyone, but it certainly has its perks. If you&rsquo;re pondering making this shift, be honest with yourself. Some people are well-suited to being their own bosses, but that isn&rsquo;t true for everyone. I also have a hunch that if people realized how much work they&rsquo;d really be doing, they might not be so keen on ditching the office job. Plus, it&rsquo;s nice to get dressed sometimes.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tara-struyk">Tara Struyk</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-straight-talk-on-working-from-home">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-2-boost-income">Getting by without a job, part 2--boost income</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/america-is-the-no-vacation-nation">America Is the No Vacation Nation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/three-e-books-to-help-you-make-money-travel-and-change-your-life">Three E-Books to Help You Make Money, Travel, and Change Your Life</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-should-you-say-no-to-those-who-want-to-borrow-money-from-you">When Should You Say No to Those Who Want to Borrow Money from You?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/if-you-won-the-lottery-you-would">If You Won The Lottery, You Would...</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income Lifestyle challenges self-employment working from home Tue, 05 Jun 2012 09:36:40 +0000 Tara Struyk 933902 at http://www.wisebread.com Bohemians Then and Now http://www.wisebread.com/bohemians-then-and-now <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/bohemians-then-and-now" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/bohemian_0.jpg" alt="Bohemian girl with parrot" title="Bohemian Girl" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="147" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The bohemian lifestyle keeps being reinvented. Whenever people try to make a go of supporting themselves through their creative endeavors, it appears naturally out of the confluence of poverty and the freedom to ignore social conventions that comes of not having a boss. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-to-become-self-employed">6 Reasons to Become Self-Employed</a>)</p> <p>Making a living as an artist (including not just visual artists but also writers, musicians, dancers, actors, etc.) is fundamental to bohemianism. Richard Florida, author of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000WCTPI4?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=wisbre08-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=B000WCTPI4"><em>The Rise of the Creative Class</em></a>, created a &quot;bohemian index&quot; based on what fraction of the population in an area is earning a living through creative pursuits.</p> <p>For most artists, most of the time, supporting yourself through your art means poverty. There are occasional &quot;golden ages&quot; of one thing or another during which it's possible for large numbers of artists to make a middle-class living with their art, but they're rare.</p> <p>Right now we're living in something of, let's call it a &quot;silver age.&quot; Largely because of the internet, there are a lot of ways to make a little money from art, writing, music, etc. (especially if by &quot;etc.&quot; you include things like web design). Whereas the original bohemians pretty much had to live in a densely populated urban center, because it was only there that an unknown artist had any hope of earning a living, now artists can be location independent.</p> <p>Still, bohemianism and urbanism are pretty tightly bound. Richard Florida's bohemian index shows that the most bohemian locations are large urban centers (although many large urban areas are not particularly bohemian).</p> <p>For many people, though, it's the unorthodox lifestyle &mdash; the living arrangements, the political and social views &mdash; that they think of when they think of bohemians. It's the freedom that appeals.</p> <p>Of course, the freedom has a broader appeal if it can be achieved without the poverty, and in today's permissive society, it often can be. Often enough, in fact, for New York Times columnist David Brooks to have managed to get a whole book &mdash;&nbsp;<em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0684853787?ie=UTF8&amp;tag=wisbre08-20&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=0684853787">Bobos in Paradise</a>&nbsp;</em>&mdash; out of the phenomenon he called &quot;bourgeois bohemians.&quot; The people Brooks is talking about don't live in poverty &mdash; in fact, they're quite affluent &mdash; but their lifestyle <em>looks</em> somewhat bohemian because they eschew conspicuous consumption. But they actually spend a lot of money. It's voluntary, but it's neither simplicity nor frugality.</p> <p>As far as I know, no one has a index for what fraction of the population is practicing voluntary simplicity.</p> <p>What's interesting to me about modern bohemianism is that the directionality can flow in the opposite direction: If you choose to live frugally, you gain much of the freedom that made the original bohemians so distinctive. (Of course, even if the standard of living in each case is about the same, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/voluntary-simplicity-versus-poverty ">poverty and voluntary simplicity are very different things</a>.)</p> <p>Instead of a commitment to one's art forcing one into poverty, the voluntary acceptance of a frugal lifestyle enables one to commit to one's art. And, if you have <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/on-the-importance-of-having-capital ">a little capital</a>, the lifestyle choices don't need to seem much like poverty at all.</p> <p>It's a modern bohemianism.</p> <p><em style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border-width: 0px; font-weight: inherit; font-style: italic; font-size: 13px; font-family: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;">Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, and I will earn a commission for any purchase made through these links.</em></p> <p> <meta charset="utf-8" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/philip-brewer">Philip Brewer</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/bohemians-then-and-now">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/37-ways-youd-be-better-off-as-a-bum">37 Ways You’d be Better Off as a Bum</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/security-is-an-illusion-freedom-is-real">Security is an illusion. Freedom is real.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-money-does-buy-happiness">9 Ways Money Does Buy Happiness</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-think-like-a-billionaire-when-you-re-broke">How to Think Like a Billionaire When You’re Broke</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/not-free-to-be-poor">Not free to be poor</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle artists bohemian freedom poverty self-employment Fri, 11 Feb 2011 14:00:10 +0000 Philip Brewer 489917 at http://www.wisebread.com Getting by without a job, part 2--boost income http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-2-boost-income <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/getting-by-without-a-job-part-2-boost-income" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/handy-man.jpg" alt="Handy man whitewashing a house" title="Handy Man" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="310" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>[Editor's note:&nbsp; If you recently lost your job, take a look at Wise Bread's collection of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/lost-my-job-tips-for-the-recently-laid-off">tips and resources for the recently laid off</a>.]</em></p> <p>If there's one fundamental rule for financial success, it's &quot;spend less than you earn.&quot; That rule applies whether you have a job or not. But, if you're used to having a job, the adjustments to getting by without one are going to be huge. It can be done, though. I suggest a three-pronged strategy, the first prong being to boost your income.</p> <p>This is part two of a four-part series. Part 1 was on the first <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-1-losing-a-job">things to do if you lose your job</a>. Parts 3 and 4 will be on cutting expense and getting what you need without money. Look for them here over the next few days.</p> <p>There are countless ways to raise your income, besides the obvious one of getting a job (which I assume that you're already applying yourself to in a workman-like fashion). Here are a few categories, and a few suggestions.</p> <h2>Casual labor</h2> <p>The most obvious option is working--just outside the framework of a regular job. Some kinds of work are traditionally structured this way and others are freelance versions of work that is just as often done by employees. Either way there's a long list of possibilities. Here are just a few:</p> <ul> <li>handyman</li> <li>house cleaner</li> <li>house painter</li> <li>gardener</li> <li>writer</li> <li>editor</li> <li>web designer</li> <li>massage therapist</li> <li>dog walker</li> <li>photographer</li> <li>tutor</li> <li>bicycle messenger</li> </ul> <p>None of these are likely to be well-paid and all are likely to be facing a drop in demand (because the potential buyers are also suffering in the economic crunch) at just the same moment that there'll be a surge in supply (as all the other unemployed folks try to pick up a little extra cash). Still, an income above zero is better than an income of zero.</p> <h2>Seasonal and temporary work</h2> <p>This category covers everything from detasseling corn to being a department store Santa. Although in many cases people are technically hired as employees for these sorts of jobs, I'm including it because it's not like having a permanent job.</p> <p>There are seasonal jobs for every season. In the weeks leading up to Christmas, stores hire extra sales help and delivery companies hire extra package loaders and sorters. There is agricultural work at almost any season except the dead of winter. These sorts of jobs are usually very hard work for not much pay.</p> <p>Especially early in hard economic times, temporary work tends to dry up--temps are the first to be let go, during the phase when employers are still hoping to avoid layoffs. But there continues to be some temp work right along, because companies always need some things done and don't want to hire employees when they can't offer long-term employment. In particular, as a recession winds down--but while companies are still waiting to see if this is really a lasting increase in business--they often hire temps in large numbers.</p> <p>Seasonal workers are usually hired directly. Temporary workers are more often hired through a temporary agency.</p> <h2>Employ yourself</h2> <p>Some people already have a small business that they were running on the side while working at a regular job, in which case ramping up the small business to bring in more money can be a great option. Other people have always wanted to run a small business, and losing a job can give them the freedom to take a chance on doing so sooner rather than later.</p> <p>If you don't already have a small business--or at least have some kind of small business in mind--this may not be the best choice. Starting a small business requires capital, and unless running a business is what you really want to do, you might be better off just investing the capital in something that pays interest.</p> <h2>Sell assets</h2> <p>Another place to get some money, at least for a while, is to sell stuff that you've got that has some value. Sadly, it's probably the case that most of your stuff is worth only a tiny fraction of what you paid for it, but a lot of it will nevertheless be salable. Depending on the item, consider:</p> <ul> <li>vintage clothing stores</li> <li>consignment shops</li> <li>pawn shops</li> <li>used bookstores</li> <li>garage sales</li> <li>internet classifieds and auction sites</li> </ul> <p>This is a limited source--you've only go so much stuff--but you can pick up some money here.</p> <h2>Sell crafts</h2> <p>More sustainable than selling your used stuff is selling <strong>stuff you make</strong>. Almost any hobby that produces an actual thing (quilts, sweaters, mugs, earrings, jam) can produce some cash income--sometimes quite a bit. Even when it isn't particularly profitable--when the selling price barely covers the cost of materials or maps to a ridiculously low hourly wage--it can still be a way to turn stuff you bought back when you had a job (fabric, yarn, beads) into more money than you could make trying to sell the raw materials.</p> <p>Stuff you make is also good for bartering, something that I'll talk about in part 4 of this series.</p> <h2>Other hobby-related income</h2> <p>Related to selling things you produce, many hobbies also provide other ways to pick up some extra cash by teaching, writing, speaking, and so on. I wrote about this a while back in <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-your-hobby-pay-its-way">Make your hobby pay its way</a>.</p> <h2>Rent out assets</h2> <p>Some assets can be rented out in a way that produces a sustainable income rather than the one-time cash payment you'd get from a sale. Your savings earns some amount of interest (until you spend it). A spare room in your house can be rented out to a boarder. There are legal issues involved--if you rent your car to someone, you're probably taking on considerable liability if he gets into an accident--but if you've got stuff that people will rent, it's worth considering.</p> <h2>Not a complete solution</h2> <p>For most people, the sort of money you can pick up through casual labor or by selling crafts will never match what you could make at a regular job. That means that, if you want to get by without a job, you're almost certainly going to have to cut your cost of living--the topic of the next post in this series:</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-3-cut-spending">Getting by without a job, part 3--cut spending</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-4-get-free-stuff">Getting by without a job, part 4--get free stuff</a></li> </ul> <p>&nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/philip-brewer">Philip Brewer</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/getting-by-without-a-job-part-2-boost-income">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-got-a-raise-now-what">You Got a Raise! Now What?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/turn-your-passion-into-a-living">Turn Your Passion Into A Living</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-35-best-ways-to-spend-your-free-time-frugally">The 35 Best Ways to Spend Your Free Time (Frugally)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-deal-when-you-work-with-someone-you-hate">8 Ways to Deal When You Work With Someone You Hate</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-downsides-to-a-bigger-paycheck">5 Downsides to a Bigger Paycheck</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income craft crafts hobbies hobby income self-employment temporary work work Sat, 29 Nov 2008 22:38:57 +0000 Philip Brewer 2611 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Reasons to Become Self-Employed http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-to-become-self-employed <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-reasons-to-become-self-employed" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/495399_29250366.jpg" alt="Siesta on the Beach" title="Siesta on the Beach" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="175" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>At some point in their lives, everyone has dreamed about starting their own business. Whether it's selling cosmetics and beauty products, marketing your own personal invention or selling drop-ship items through eBay, there's just something really sexy about the idea of being your own boss.</p> <p>And you know what? You're right. There are indeed many reasons that you should consider joining the ever-growing forces of the self-employed. Here's what I think are the top six.</p> <h2>No More Rush-Hour</h2> <p>Do you realize how much time is wasted sitting in traffic? Not to mention the stress and anxiety you endure when traffic doesn't move the way it should. Rush-hour is just bad, no matter how you look at it. It doesn't matter if you use that time to reflect on your day, chit-chat on your cell or learn to speak French with your audio course - it's still something that I'm betting we can all do without. No more rush-hour means you won't be wasting gas. No more rush-hour also means you don't have to worry about driving on icy bridges, sliding on slick roads, or navigating in the middle of a &quot;can't see 5 feet in front of me&quot; downpour.</p> <h2>No More Pantyhose</h2> <p>Or stifling ties, business suits, or uncomfortable shoes. In fact, no more dress code at all. Unless of course, you're opening a business where you actually meet your clients face-to-face but even then, you still have a little leeway in choosing what to wear.</p> <h2>No More Security Blanket</h2> <p>That's right...become self-employed and you'll no longer have the luxury of a fixed income every month. But was that security blanket really all that secure? A corporation can lay you off without warning -- maybe you'll get a severance package and maybe you won't. But while you're laying awake at night wondering what on Earth you're going to do, they'll all be sleeping nicely. Doesn't seem fair does it?</p> <h2>No More Meetings</h2> <p>Okay, yes..you might still meet with clients but what you won't do is attend meetings to plan a meeting about an upcoming meeting. No, that's not a typo. For all their innovation and manpower, big businesses have a lot of red tape. You can't just order something when you need it -- you have to first fill out the proper form and get the proper signatures. If a problem arises, chances are you can't just fix it -- it has to go through the necessary channels. And there's a good reason for that. With a staff in the thousands, you'd be crazy to just give every employee the &quot;pen&quot; and allow them to do things as they please. But you don't have a staff in the thousands. You have a staff of one. You. And if you want to make an executive decision, there's absolutely no one to say that you can't.</p> <h2>No More Vacation Days</h2> <p>Do you want to take a day off and go to the beach? Wish you could go eat lunch with your first grader? Now you can! Being self-employed may initially mean you work a little harder or a little longer but it also means that you have the flexibility to do what you need when you need to do it. As a freelance writer, I can adjust my days to meet the needs of my family. Sometimes, that means I'm up writing late at night when everyone else is sleeping but hey...I'm a night-person by nature and I don't have an alarm clock that's going to start chiming at some ridiculously early hour. So, if I need to pick my kids up from school, I can. If there's a soccer practice or a band performance or even if I just feel like sleeping in until 10am, I can. And as a self-employed person, so can you.</p> <h2>No More Raises</h2> <p>Perhaps the biggest reason to join the ranks of the self-employed is the pure potential for earning your worth. Yes, you might put in some long hours to do so, but working for yourself puts you in the financial driver's seat. No more raises, no more bonuses and no more steady paychecks but you have the opportunity to actually earn what you want. Why? Because as an entrepreneur, you decide the value of your work - not an employer.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kate-luther">Kate Luther</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-to-become-self-employed">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-life-skills-every-freelancer-needs">8 Life Skills Every Freelancer Needs</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-sep-ira-is-how-the-self-employed-do-retirement-like-a-boss">The SEP-IRA Is How the Self-Employed Do Retirement Like a BOSS</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-small-businesses">Best Credit Cards for Small Businesses</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-websites-that-will-pay-you-to-write-for-them">22 Websites That Will Pay You to Write for Them</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-strategies-for-paying-off-debt-when-living-on-a-variable-income">7 Strategies for Paying Off Debt When Living on a Variable Income</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Entrepreneurship self-employment starting your own business Fri, 01 Feb 2008 00:15:10 +0000 Kate Luther 1727 at http://www.wisebread.com Five Easy Steps to Keeping Track of Expenses for the Self-Employed http://www.wisebread.com/five-easy-steps-to-keeping-track-of-expenses-for-the-self-employed <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/five-easy-steps-to-keeping-track-of-expenses-for-the-self-employed" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/receipts.JPG" alt="receipts envelope" title="receipts management" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>I have had as many as five separate businesses at once to keep track of, including proper accounting of expenses for tax purposes. And it takes me no more than 5 minutes per week to do. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>A big hassle for most people I know who are self-employed or in contract positions (especially in creative fields) is the boring necessity to track expenses and receipts for tax purposes. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText">&nbsp;</p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>There are a few methods I've seen employed that leave a little to be desired:</span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText">&nbsp;</p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span><strong>The Shoebox Approach.</strong> </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>This usually entails a nightly or weekly emptying of the wallet or pockets into a shoebox labelled &quot;taxes&quot;. At the end of the year, one of two things happens: The culprit dedicates long days upon days to &quot;file their taxes&quot;. Really this process is less about the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxes/tax-preparation " title="Wise Bread's Guide to Tax Preparation ">tax preparation</a> itself and more about sifting through piles of receipts, tallying up everything with calculators, and hoping that everything adds up. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>The other option for the shoebox guru is to simply take the unkempt pile of receipts into their accountant or bookkeeper and get them to sort through everything. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span> <br /> I see two problems with this strategy: </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>1: The daunting task of taking time off to sift through receipts and prepare taxes makes it one of the dullest and soul-sucking chores around. So consequently throughout the year there is less motivation to save the right receipts since it will just have to be tallied at the end of the year and less receipts to tally means less of a pain in the you-know-what to contend with. It also means less tax dollars saved. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>2: For those that go with the bookkeeper option, you are spending more money paying somebody else to do something that could easily be maintained yourself. For the frugal business owners in us, it's not always a wise expenditure. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span> </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span><strong>The Day-timer Approach.</strong> </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>You know those expense logs that often come with the reference pages for most day-timers and schedules? Well, I haven't actually seen anybody use them successfully, but they keep coming out every year so I have to assume that somebody uses those pages and likes them. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>My beef with that approach is that there is no proper filing of the receipts which are needed for the actual <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taxes/tax-preparation " title="Wise Bread's Guide to Tax Preparation ">tax preparation</a> (which relegates even the Day-timer User to the Shoebox Approach in a manner), and when it comes down to tax time even the expense logs need to be re-categorized and<span> </span>shuffled by hand according to the types of expenses incurred. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span> </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>Here's what I personally do with my receipts, and it seems to work out quite well for me and is not time consuming at all: </span></p> <p><span><strong>1: </strong>Whenever I incur an expense, I usually <strong>stuff the receipt in my wallet</strong> until I get home, or until there are enough receipts in my wallet that it occurs to me to take them out. (This usually happens about once a week). </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span><strong>2: </strong>Once I've pulled the pile of receipts from my wallet, it's time to deal with them right then and there. I <strong>enter the following information into a spreadsheet</strong>:</span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><em><span>Date</span></em></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><em><span>Vendor</span></em></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span><em>Type of expense for tax purposes</em> (eg: auto, office expenses, advertising, insurance, etc)</span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><em><span>Amount of money spent</span></em></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span><em>Additional notes </em>(eg: that dinner I'm claiming was when I took John Doe out to discuss ABC business, or that auto expense is specifically for gas or repairs.)</span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span> </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span><strong>3: </strong>Once entered, I <strong>file the receipts away</strong>. I have a file folder that stores all the receipts for the year, and I clip all the receipts together by expense. For example, within my folder is an &quot;auto&quot; pile held together with a paperclip to which I attach my gas receipts. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>This way if I ever need to reference the original receipts again, I can easily put my hands on that specific receipt since it's already filed according to category and roughly by date as well since I enter and file the receipts regularly.</span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span> <br /> That's it for the daily or weekly maintenance. No more than five minutes each week once you get into a system that works for you, I promise! </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>When it comes to tax time, I go through a few additional steps to make things easier on my accountant: </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span> <br /> <strong>4: </strong>Since all my receipts are logged in spreadsheet format, all I have to do now is <strong>organize the spreadsheet</strong>. Using data sorts and searches, I create a page for each type of expense and print it out. For example my advertising page itemizes all the expenses I incurred for that category, showing dates, amounts, and special notes. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>This process can be tedious especially if you are still learning how to categorize your expenses or manipulate spreadsheet information. But it gets easier and easier each year, and at the height of my business frenzy, it sill only took me a couple of hours to do. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span> <br /> <strong>5: </strong>I take all the printed spreadsheets (along with the original receipts just in case we need to reference them) to my accountant. I <strong>sit there with my accountant as we review the spreadsheets</strong>. If he or she feels that a certain expense is best claimed in another area, then we can easily subtract it from the total on that sheet, and add it to another sheet. It's a great learning experience for me, so the following year I can better manage my receipts and have a greater understanding of how to file taxes to get the best bang for my bucks spent. </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span> </span></p> <p class="MsoPlainText"><span>Not only is this approach easy and helps me to maintain some semblance of control over my finances, but I also save money even with my accountant, since I've already done a lot of the prep work. All he or she has to do is plug in the numbers and tell me how much money I saved!</span></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffive-easy-steps-to-keeping-track-of-expenses-for-the-self-employed&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FFive%2520Easy%2520Steps%2520to%2520Keeping%2520Track%2520of%2520Expenses%2520for%2520the%2520Self-Employed.jpg&amp;description=Five%20Easy%20Steps%20to%20Keeping%20Track%20of%20Expenses%20for%20the%20Self-Employed"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/Five%20Easy%20Steps%20to%20Keeping%20Track%20of%20Expenses%20for%20the%20Self-Employed.jpg" alt="Five Easy Steps to Keeping Track of Expenses for the Self-Employed" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nora-dunn">Nora Dunn</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-easy-steps-to-keeping-track-of-expenses-for-the-self-employed">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/surprise-5-reasons-you-might-not-get-your-tax-refund">Surprise! 5 Reasons You Might Not Get Your Tax Refund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tax-document-checklist-what-to-gather-before-doing-your-taxes">Tax Document Checklist: What to Gather Before Doing Your Taxes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-if-i-skip-my-taxes-this-year">What If I Skip My Taxes This Year?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-tax-deductions-you-can-never-take">3 Tax Deductions You Can Never Take</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-big-business-accounting-tools-every-side-gig-needs">4 Big Business Accounting Tools Every Side Gig Needs</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Organization Taxes accounting bookeeping filing taxes managing taxes receipts self-employment tax preparation Fri, 28 Sep 2007 04:22:23 +0000 Nora Dunn 1223 at http://www.wisebread.com