I Just Finished the Move

I Just Finished the Move

I started to look for apartments in Wichita last month, but it did not go that well until I just lucked into a good place. In fact this place has a big lake that belongs to the apartment complex. The thing was more or less just a fluke, since I had not seen this guy in ten years since we were in college together and he was looking for a new roommate at the same time that I was looking for a place to live He told me the story of the other guy, who apparently should have been taking some crazy pills and was not. He told me this guy had seemed really normal for a couple of years, but then he had stopped taking those pills and that turned him into a really scary guy who did not go to work or pay his share of the rent. Obviously you do not want that sort of roommate. Read the rest of this entry

Moving the Kids in the Middle of a School Year Was Not Easy

Moving the Kids in the Middle of a School Year Was Not Easy

There is a lot to do when you move. Everyone knows that. It is not easy to pack up everything and move it to a new place. It is harder to move the people than it is to move the stuff. It was tough on the kids to move in the middle of high school in the middle of a school year. They were not happy, but they were making the best of it. We looked for Manassas VA apartments together in the evenings online. We all had a stake in this. We pretty much let the kids pick the place we were going to live. My wife and I were actually okay with the move. We never completely liked where we had been living, and the chance at a fresh start was exciting to us. Read the rest of this entry

My Long Commute is Finally over

My Long Commute is Finally over

I needed to find a place to live that is close to the airport. I was living with my parents when I got the job at the airport, but I decided to not move even though the commute time was nearly 50 minutes each way. I was not sure I was going to stick with this job, so I did not want to get locked into a lease for an apartment or rental house and end up finding something better for work. However, not long ago, I did a search for luxury apartments for South Charlotte because I knew that this was a job that I want to keep for the rest of my working years, if possible.

I make a great living there, and I really enjoy what I do. Those two factors alone make it a dream job, but having the coworkers that I do makes me never want to leave. Read the rest of this entry

Biscayne Bay Has Always Been Our Very Favorite Place

Biscayne Bay Has Always Been Our Very Favorite Place

We have wandered all over the country in our RVs. We started out with a Class B van type RV before moving up to a large Class C. We have been everywhere from Alaska to the Florida Keys as far as north and south go, and as far as the Outer Banks and Ventura for the east and west. Of all the places we have been, we like Biscayne Bay, Florida the best. We decided to come in off the road and check out apartments for rent in North Bay Village. We had sold our house a long time ago, and used my brother’s address as a home base.

We were looking forward to becoming residents of Florida. We traveled in our RV always seeking the sunshine and warm weather with short stops in cooler climates. We prefer shorts and tees to parkas and gloves. We found Treasure On The Bay in the North Village, and we have settled in quite nicely. Our RV was overhauled and put into storage. Read the rest of this entry

A New Vacation Tradition Has Started

A New Vacation Tradition Has Started

The last time my family has been on a vacation together was when we were all kids before we started heading off to college. We are all getting older now, but thankfully we are all still alive and doing well. I was looking at luxury vacation rentals for Aspen for my wife and I when I thought it would be really nice to get one of the larger ones for all of us. I have two older brothers who are married and one younger sister who is married and has two kids. With my three children and our parents, that meant we would need to get a pretty big rental.

I knew just the site to go to in order to find exactly what we needed. Read the rest of this entry

Keeping the Girls in the Same School District

Keeping the Girls in the Same School District

My twin daughters and I found ourselves in a unique position not long ago. They are both juniors in high school, and we have lived in the same school district all their lives. They have friends who they have known ever since they were toddlers. That is why when we were forced to move, I knew that we were going to look at apartments in Ballantyne NC because there was no way I was going to tear my girls away from the only life they have ever known. I remember how awful it was when my family moved during my high school years, and I was not going to do that to them.

However, I did have to find us a nice place to live. There are all kinds of house rentals in the area, but I was not happy with any that I had looked at. Read the rest of this entry

So Many Things to Do in Colorado

So Many Things to Do in Colorado

I needed to find the best apartments in Colorado Springs because I wanted to enjoy my retirement without the burden of being tied down to a house. I spent forty years living in my home with a wife and children and enjoyed every minute of it. The only things I didn’t like were the pedestrian chores involved in home ownership. Mowing the lawn and shoveling the sidewalk isn’t bad when you’re a young man, but after you hit fifty every year gets harder. The kids left the home and then I retired and my wife passed away. I was ready for a change.

We lived in Denver and frankly I never did like the city. It’s only gotten worse in the last couple of decades as we’ve had a huge influx of people from California and the place has gotten quite crowded. I wanted to chuck the house and move somewhere else, but I didn’t want to leave Colorado. Despite some problems, this is still probably the best state to live in hands down. Read the rest of this entry

Wide Spread Loan Modification Abuse Avoid Becoming a Victim

Wide Spread Loan Modification Abuse Avoid Becoming a Victim

With so many people facing foreclosure today, thousands of loan modification companies have emerged offering a financial lifeline. Unfortunately, most demand big upfront fees, are not sufficiently educated in the industry to actually help, and may hurt by wasting valuable time and effort, or many companies (about 75%) are in the business to scam people. As stated by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan–If you are struggling to make your mortgage payments, or if you are facing foreclosure, stay away from anyone who says that they will save your home for money upfront-.

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Loss Mitigation Specialist C. Thompson Sr (Nationwide Assistance, Clermont, FLA), has determined several tale tale signs of scamming by these companies:

Charges a huge upfront fee- the purpose of the fee is to contact the lender to ask for a loan modification. But, if turned down, only half the fee or none of the fee is returned. In these cases, there should be a money back guarantee.

Will not explain the purpose of the fee- all services should be explained and all questions answered.

Is not interested in your circumstances- may not have your best interest at heart.

Does not stop the foreclosure proceedings during the negotiation.

Will accept the first proposal from the lender, which may not suit your circumstances.

A virtual company-no real office- may not be a real company.

Too good to be true- promises a fantastic interest rate or/and an exact principle reduction amount, without consulting the lender. No promises can be made without negtiating with the lender.

No approval process-An approval process should be the first step in the modification process, before a fee is paid. The process should not include credit qualification, and approval should not be made on the first phone call.

Not a member of the Better Business Bureau.-they are not a leader in the industry.

Fortunately, you can avoid these scams. There are other avenues to pursue if you need assistance with your urgent mortgage problems. Consider a non-profit agency that will assist you without charging a fee, or a real estate licensee and an attorney who will work and allow payment after the work is completed. You can also obtain free advice and consultation for your refinance, loan modification and foreclosure needs through several government agencies:

Hope NOW –

FHA –

California Department of Real Estate –

Making Home Affordable-

The information presented above applies to home refinancing and loan modification abuse. However, if you are seriously looking to improve your finances in general, visit to find out more.

Small Business Development And Marketing Strategies

Small Business Development And Marketing Strategies

Since most small businesses have suffered during the past several years due to declining sales generally caused by a chaotic economy, it should be helpful to explore the most practical and realistic marketing strategies available to them. Improving business development efforts is desirable during any financial and economic environment, but there are extra benefits to doing so when sales have declined for whatever reason. Because a typical small business owner does not have the luxury of choosing from many strategies available to larger companies, the marketing improvement process for small businesses is necessarily restricted to a relatively short list of business development alternatives. While the choices will vary from case to case, here are three marketing and business development strategies which will often be considered by small businesses:

* Advertising
* Increasing sales staff
* Business proposals

For most smaller companies, declining revenues have led to some financial challenges and the need to reduce operating expenses already. Therefore it is likely that a common limitation and goal in any marketing decision will be to keep the costs reasonable. When dealing with limited funds, small business owners should evaluate which marketing strategy is the most cost effective method. Business proposal writing usually emerges as the leading choice for small companies when cost effectiveness is taken into account.

There are several kinds of business proposals, and not all of them will be realistic options for each company. Here are the two business proposal types which are likely to be worth reviewing closely:

* Formal proposal solicitations
* Informal and unsolicited proposals

Of these two types, the second (unsolicited and informal proposals) usually deserves the most attention by small businesses. Formally solicited proposals are typically announced by a Request for Proposal (RFP) process and are subject to more public awareness and competition by other companies. Depending on competitive circumstances, it is certainly possible that responding to an RFP might be well-suited to some small business situations. In other words, look carefully before deciding to ignore the RFP possibility.

An informal or unsolicited proposal process potentially offers the most freedom for a small business. Timing is frequently a major problem for an RFP because the company or government agency issuing it determines in advance when it will publish the Request for Proposal and in turn will also determine the deadlines for responses. The timing for unsolicited and informal proposals is effectively under the complete control of the small business which is preparing a proposal. The combination of reduced competition and scheduling flexibility usually makes this a compelling approach to business development and proposals.

Stock Market And Investment Mantra

Stock Market And Investment Mantra

The term investment is no longer a complexity, especially related to stock market in India. Right from corporates, professionals, homemakers to students, the scope of investing has influenced all. It is no surprise if you find most of the people glued to the television or news portals to have a glimpse of the latest market news once the trading hours start. The stock prices in India get displayed in the news channels and portals facilitating investors to view the same. Buying and selling decisions depend on the market news as well as latest statistics of stock prices in India.

What do you expect from your investment or what are the objectives behind your investing in the Indian stock market? Obviously it is creation of wealth and optimizing it. Smart investment is all about buying stocks at the appropriate time and holding them until the right time approaches for selling. Not all stocks witness a rise in their value; your time and efforts on research, knowledge and staying updated with market news will help you choose stocks that would ensure maximum return on your investment.

One of the easiest tricks to experience a win-win situation in the Indian stock market is choosing stocks based on the performance of the company. So, you must be closely studying the rising and falling stock prices in India. How do you go forward with the choice factor? Consider the stock from the chart which you feel is consistent in its rising value. Find out the historical data and take into account the profit and turnover generated for a particular period of time, say five years at the minimum. If it is a renowned company, you will often come across its activities being published as part of market news. For long term investment in such a company, consider the long term profits and economic status; for short term investment, do take into account the performance over a short duration, say at least six months. Once you are confident enough about a particular stock that promises returns, you can proceed with the buying.

The 12 UK Land Investment Guidelines

The 12 UK Land Investment Guidelines

Following these guidelines will help you proceed wisely with investing in UK land:

1) Is the investment land in a region with high demand for housing?

The property should be in area that is viable and not at risk of future decline. Review statistics and trends about violent crime, school performance, industry loss or retention, and poverty, as these factors are crucial to determining housing demand. Find out what the city’s position is on funding for, and commitment to improving any of the aforementioned housing demand indicators.

2) Has a full sustainability study been carried out on the land investment site?

The land investment site must be evaluated to see what impact land development would have on the environment and natural resources. Any disturbance or potential harm to archeological sites, protected species, or conservation areas should be noted. Inspect the land’s topography for any sloping or flooding potential. Assess the effect that your potential investment might have on the present character of the land and buildings. Consider if a new development would “fit in” with the existing developments’ character?

3) Does the land investment site have road access? Is there an existing transport infrastructure?

Inquire about any plans for modification of roads that may affect the property in question. If there are such plans, are they already funded and scheduled or are they still in the planning stages? Research factors that affect the importance of access, such as the number of people who commute to work as opposed to working locally.

4) Does the area where the investment land lies have sufficient amenities to support residents of a new development?

Evaluate the quality and enrollment capacity of local schools availability of recreational facilities. Consider not only the quantity and variety of shops, but ask about longevity versus or high turnover of those businesses. Look into the ease of accessing both inpatient and outpatient medical care. Ask about immediate or future plans for addition or removal of any of the above amenities.

5) Does the company with whom you are investing have a successful record of accomplishment with UK Land Investments?

Ask for referrals from current and previous clients and actually contact them. Search public records, industry journals, and periodicals to be apprised of the company’s reputation, stability, and expertise with investing in UK Land.

6) Does the company contractually retain a holding in the land investment site?

Investigating matters such as this may seem to be obvious and unnecessary but will save you time and money in the long- run

7) Does the company contractually commit funds to the planning application for the land investment site?

Be sure that commitment of funds to the planning application for your potential investment in UK land is specified in the contract.

Qiqqa Entrepreneur Wins 5k

Qiqqa Entrepreneur Wins 5k

James Jardine from the University of Cambridge in the UK won third prize in the post-graduate category of the Santander University Entrepreneurship Awards.

He scooped 5,000 for his company Qiqqa.com a company that provides free software which helps students and researchers manage information.

The awards aim to support and encourage university students to pursue their business ideas and are open to students from all 58 universities within the Santander programme.

To mark the fifth anniversary of Santander Universities in the UK, Santander chief executive, Ana Botn, announced an additional 1.5m of funding to UK universities, taking its total investment to 7 million during 2012, as well as 100 new mobility grants of 2,500 available to UK students to study abroad.

She also extended the banks support for small businesses with the launch of a new programme to place graduates from the countrys top universities on internships with SMEs across the UK.

The programme to encourage entrepreneurialism amongst graduates is a collaboration between Santander and its university partners and aims to promote the benefits of working for a SME to third-year or recently graduated students, while providing smaller businesses with an injection of talent not always easy to obtain by companies with limited administration resources.

Santander will work with its partner universities to find students and companies who will benefit most from the scheme and will help with placement and administration, including project management, as well as part-funding a basic salary for the students.

Ana Botn said: Youth unemployment and particularly graduate unemployment is one of the most pressing issues for the UK economy. We hope our new programme offering 500 student internships to SMEs can help provide our talented graduate community with the opportunity to gain vital experience in the work place, whilst opening their eyes to the benefits of working for smaller companies.

SMEs have not typically attempted to compete with the graduate recruitment schemes of the big FTSE players and we hope that this initiative will give a wider range of companies the benefit of fresh, young talent.

As the engines of progress and invention, universities have an important role to play in incubating the enterprises of tomorrow. Santander is proud to be supporting and recognising the entrepreneurial skills demonstrated by students through our Entrepreneurship Awards, as well as announcing an additional 1.5 million of funding to support British universities, taking our total investment to 7 million in the UK and 120 million globally, this year.
Photograph:James Jardine receiving his prize from Santander chief executive, Ana Botn