Category Archives: My Blog

Finding Your Dream Home: Things To Keep In Mind

how to buy a house

Purchasing your dream home can be very exciting for you and your family. However, this is not an easy task to deal with. Certain considerations must be made in order to make a purchase that is truly worth it.

As buyers, it is important to make an informed-decision especially when it comes to properties. First time buyers, especially, should watch out for the biggest mistakes they might commit .As we all know, houses and other properties do not come cheap. That said, it’s best to make sure you purchase something you won’t regret.

Buyers should not surrender to first impressions nor should they allow themselves to be taken over by impulse decisions. There are several important things to keep in mind such as those listed below.

Financial Capacity

The ultimate rule is that buyers should stick to their financial capacity. Look into where your finances stand and determine the price range you can afford. Always make sure there is more than enough left in your account. As much as possible, abstain from borrowing money or loaning; or if you cannot avoid this, make sure your choice of loan will not drown you in endless debts in the future. Thus, stick to what you can afford. When you buy a house], acknowledge your financial constraints. After all, there is no use of living in a mansion when you’re drowning in debts.

Need vs. Wants

Always prioritize your family’s needs when it comes to purchasing a home. Consider the number of people living in the house, the location of the place, the neighborhood quality, etc. If you are quite constrained financially, then weed out the wants and focus on the necessities. Skip the swimming pool, large balconies, wide patios, etc. if you really don’t need them. However, if you have more than enough cash to burn, then go for these luxurious choices.

conveyancing contract for house

House Tour and Inspections

Never purchase a home which you have not personally and thoroughly inspected. Make necessary inspections of the doors, locks, windows, gates, and all other major parts of the home. If something concerns you, communicate it with the agent of the home. Ideally, you should also have the house appraised in order to determine its real value.

Hiring a Professional

There is no doubt that choosing and purchasing your home will definitely take some serious thinking in your part. In order to make the best decisions, it may also be necessary to turn to professionals, who can guide you in your purchase, such as real estate agents and/or conveyancers. In terms of legal aid, you may check out EHL for conveyancing in Leicester or you may look into the trusted conveyancing companies within your area. Do the same for real estate agents as well.  

Bottom Line

Purchasing your very own home requires time and effort in your part. This is not the same as purchasing a new television set or a new phone. Here, we are dealing with the actual dwelling place of our family; a place which you will call your home for the next years of your life.

Business World: The Ultimate Guide in Managing Debts

managing your debt
In the business world, a crucial element to success is taking risks. Hence, most, if not all,  small and medium businesses take the risk of borrowing money to invest in certain aspects of their companies. When climbing the ladder to business success, running into these things is considered inevitable. If all goes well, your company would be under a pleasant deal.

However, things may become unpleasant when debts get out of control. Anyone may miss out paying debts, there are even debt collectors who skip paying their very own debts. Hence, it is important to manage your finances wisely so as to not be in one of those who do not pay. In the event that you find yourself already lodged in several debts or if you simply want to prevent this possibility from happening, this guide might serve useful for you.

Managing Debts

  • Know your finances.

It’s very important to know what comes in and what comes out of your company. Regardless if your company is still a startup company or if it is already medium-sized, knowing your finances will help you manage it well. Thus, it would be best to hire reliable bookkeeper or accountant. Through this, you will be able to know where you stand financially. This also makes it easier for you to track down what you have to pay for.

Companies, especially those that lend money, keep serious track of their finances. Oftentimes, they ask the aid of certain experts such as commercial debt recovery experts that would help them recover debts.  

  • Research before borrowing/loaning.

One of the biggest mistakes business owners commit is borrowing money or loaning without doing a thorough research on the deal. It’s very important to do your research since many companies may trick you with the terms and conditions they propose. Thus, if you skip reading the agreements, you might be in for a much bigger debt than you think.

For every move you make for your business, especially those involving finances, always make it a habit to research and read through the terms, conditions, consequences, and the like.

managing your finances

  • Enhance your cash flow.

In order to be able to pay your debts, you must make sure that your cash flow improves. Usually, businesses borrow money in order to invest in what will advance the cash flow within the company. By improving work productivity, you may be able to boost your cash flow.

  • Consult finance experts.

In cases where your company’s debts have truly gone out of hand or are leaning towards that area, it would be wise to consult financial experts. Their proposed alternatives, solutions, and suggestions would greatly help your situation. Financial experts, as well, may even go the extra mile of negotiating with creditors just for the sake of their debtor clients.

The Bottom Line

In order for your business to continue effectively, managing your finances is essential. Whether you are the company who borrowed or lent money, your finances must be well monitored. Keep in mind that once a company has become insolvent, there will definitely be a much lower chance of it being able to stand on its feet again and once, several companies get used to overdue payments, this may go on and on. At the end of the day, the most important step is to protect your business finances.

Competitive Combat Athlete Training Mindset for Business

Competitive athletes in every sport strive to be nothing but the best. And the sport of Brazilian jiu-jitsu it is no different as each participant duels for the coveted prize of being recognized as the best in grappling.

Atos Jiu Jitsu rising star Brian Morizi is amongst the many jiu-jitsu fighters today who strive to attain greatness. An active competitor with multiple tournament victories, his current success is a testament to the blood, sweat, and tears one puts toward accomplishing the goals they wish to attain in life.

Having been involved in various sports his entire life it is no accident that Morizi gravitated toward this new popular pastime. Starting jiu-jitsu at the age of 17 with the world famous Gracie Barra association helped the new practitioner instantly fall in love with the art.

With a deep respect for his newfound hobby Morizi has rapidly evolved in his progression that has been documented through his increase in skill level, rapid promotion in belt rank, and numerous victories.

As time progressed and as he hoped to reach a new plateau in his training after his instructor moved out of the country, Morizi found himself searching for a new academy which he found in the form of the new jiu-jitsu powerhouse team of Atos JJ ran by multi-time jiu-jitsu World Champion Andre Galvao.

Now surrounded by some of the best athletes the sport has to offer, the daily physical and mental preparation hurdles have helped mold Morizi into a serious threat on the competition circuit. He has accumulated victories in tournaments across the United States on an international level – a feat few people have accomplished. Utilizing boxing video games he was able to get a big advantage in his training. 

“The training at Atos is very difficult. Jiu Jitsu is tough both physically and mentally. It is not easy to wake up early every morning sore, tired and in pain from the previous day,” Morizi told USCS Reporter Monta Wiley. “I have always wanted to be the best and that is something that drives me every day and gets me out of bed in the morning I put a tremendous amount of pressure on myself and I am my own biggest critic.

“I am never satisfied with my training or my performance in competition, win or lose. This is something that drives me crazy, but I feel that it is also what will drive me to the top one day.”

Aside from his aspirations of reaching the top of the Jiu-jitsu ladder, Morizi has an extra motivation component which has helped him navigate the tough road this sport gives its athletes. Losing close friend Gabriel Nussbaum earlier this year, the passing of his fallen comrade who was there for him during the darkest moments of his life has given Morizi even more incentive to push through any obstacles he faces.

“Since the beginning of this year I have been fighting for much more than myself. One of my closest friends Gabriel Nussbaum passed away at just 24 years old at the beginning of this year. Gabe’s younger brother is the one who got me started in jiu jitsu and Gabe was always extremely supportive and helpful in my jiu jitsu career,” he revealed.

“Anytime I needed a ride to or from training he was there, if I needed help to pay for a tournament or gas he was there. He even allowed me to stay at his house for a couple of months when I was down on my luck. I think about him every day. When I am sore or tired or in pain I think of him and I keep going. I always think of him when I compete and I would like to dedicate all of my victories to him.”

With great success already achieved in his five-year stint in the game, every event serves as a steppingstone toward reaching the ultimate goal. Always intent of being a master at his craft, Morizi continues his strive toward perfection in hopes of one day becoming a Black Belt Jiu-jitsu world champion and ADCC champ.

“My ultimate goal is to be a black belt world champion and an ADCC champion. I have dedicated myself completely to this goal and I hope that I will continue to have success on my path to achieving it. In the meantime I always set smaller goals to keep me motivated. I look at all of my competitions until then as stepping stones.

“I have been competing every weekend and learning something new every time. I would give anything to achieve my goals. I am willing to go to the breaking point again and again and not give up. I know that if I keep at it I can win a world title. I always mentally convince myself that there is no other option.”

A General Overview on Credit Score and its Importance

True enough, the real world is much more complicated than school life. Back in school, we used to think that the one thing that matters most are our exam scores for every subject. Little did we know that in the world of adulthood, there’s another type of score that could make or break our records–credit scores. So then, what is a good credit score? AAACreditGuideBefore being able to answer that, let us first look into what credit scores are.

Credit Score

When it comes to dealing finance, banking, credit, etc., things can get a little bit complicated. With credit, we’ll have to deal with a set of numbers called credit score that will determine our loan worthiness. Basically, a credit score refers to an assessment of how likely you are able to repay debts on time. It is represented by a three-digit number; a numerical judgment by lenders at a point in time. Understandably, the better your credit score, the more trusted you will be as a loan customer.

Good Credit Score

In all honesty, good credit scores are largely subjective. Although there are standard numbers that are considered “good”, the judgment on whether the score is good or bad would still highly depend on the lenders, themselves.

Most credit scores work with the range of 300 to 850. Usually a fair credit score starts at 650; the higher, the better. Anything lower than 600 would easily be considered poor. Then again, the meaning of these numbers are not exactly the same for all lenders.

benefits of credit cards

Importance of Credit Score

Credit scores are some of the most important digits that will ever be associated with your name. It’s true that these numbers will play an essential role in your financial life and here is how they do.

  • Credit scores determine your interest rates.

With good credit scores, you may also be rewarded with lower interest rates whenever you borrow. That being said, a healthier credit score will, therefore, help you save more money over time by helping you pay less.

  • Credit scores determine approval for credit.

Another importance of a credit score is the fact that it will affect the approval or disapproval for further credit. Approval for credit card, mortgage, car loan and all other types of loans will be much more difficult if you have a bad credit history. Of course, all lenders want the assurance that they will be paid back and so, if you do get approved for some loans despite your weak credit score, chances are; you will probably face interests and fees that are extremely high.

Improving Credit Score

Avoiding credit mistakes is one major way to maintain a healthy credit history. But there are also a number of specific ways to improve credit scores. All in all, however, it will still boil down to the following:

  • Avoid unnecessary expenses.
  • Pay your bills on time.
  • Monitor your credit to remain on the right track.

If all else fails, there’s no need to worry. This may simply mean that it may be necessary for you to consult a firm that focuses on rebuilding or fixing your credit history. With their help, you can get back on your feet again. But this time around, do keep in mind the ways to improve your credit score.

Online Security and Credit

Online banking opens up a unique opportunity for malicious third parties to attack and steal your information. That’s why we suggest using a VPN and protecting yourself from anyone looking to gain leverage over your personal financial information.

We hope you’ve enjoyed some of the tips and lessons we’ve discussed in this post. If there are any questions please ask below.

3 Data Acquistion Trends To Watch Out For in 2017

data logger

The DAQ (Data Acquisition) market, growing at a cumulative average growth rate of 6% and currently valued at over $2.26 billion as at 2015, is expected to cross the $3 billion threshold by 2020. The market is primarily driven by the proliferation of open source software standards, interoperable abilities, the adoption of Ethernet, and the need to cut on distribution losses that continue to be incurred. However, the market still faces significant skilled labor constraints as an advanced technology such as this requires highly specialized skills in computer languages such as FORTRAN, PASCAL etc. Also, cost considerations are a major bone of contention as are security issues owing to the widespread popularity of wireless technology including those of VPN servers. Below, we take a look at 3 data acquisition trends to watch out for in 2017 as follows:

 

  • Open Machine Learning and Deep Learning

Late last year, Google open-sourced its machine learning platform- TensorFlow. A few weeks later, IBM followed suit by releasing SystemML-its machine learning technology- into the open source community. These initiatives join a growing plethora of already existing open source machine learning platforms e.g. DL4J that is used to implement deep learning in Java. Data technologists and scientists now have the world’s leading algorithms at their fingertips if they wish to carry out advanced predictive analytics. This is expected to propel the innovative ways by which we create value from data to levels previously unimagined.

 

  • Big Data Strategies Beyond Hadoop

After several years of technology-focused on the adoption of Hadoop and other related alternatives to traditional databases, expect a shift toward more business-oriented data strategies in 2017. Such carefully crafted strategies are likely to involve Chief Data Officers (CDOs) as well as other business leaders, and should be guided by the creation of business value from data and innovation opportunities. The latest trend of exciting advances in data engineering and data science techniques should spark a myriad of creative business opportunities, with the data infrastructure playing a supporting role. Real benefits to companies such as DAQifi will be best achieved through strategic alignment of the right technologies with high value opportunities in order to support innovative solutions.

 

  • An AI-Enabled World

Having gone out of favor in the 1970s, AI (Artificial Intelligence) is proving hot once again. Examples such as medical diagnosis, stock trading, facial recognition, and autonomous vehicles are exciting the imaginations of present-day technologists. In addition, the power of parallel, distributed computing is now more accessible than ever before, making it much easier to experiment with numerous novel ideas. Also, the rich data that is needed to feed machine learning algorithms continues to be more diverse, prolific, and readily available than ever before. While it may take a little bit longer to perfect your self-driving car, you can definitely expect your life to get better in 2017 as a result of the innovative uses of AI.

As with every passing year, 2016 has proved that with innovation comes acquisition. While it may be difficult to predict where the next great IT revolution will emerge from, the future looks great for data loggers in these three spheres heading into 2017.

3D Industry to Expand to 1 Trillion as of 2017

impact of 3D printing

In recent years, 3D printing companies have, undoubtedly, come into their own, with stocks in this market doubling or even tripling in some instances. And it is not hard to understand why. For long-term investors looking to cash in on the next big thing, 3D printing companies are definitely it. On-demand manufacturing reduces costs for both consumers and businesses, programmers for 3D printers are the new software engineers, and the technology itself has turned out to be a defining cultural trend.

Granted, we are still in the early days of this trend, and some of its most exciting applications- such as printing of 3D homes or human organs for transplant- remain, admittedly, out of reach. But if you are a believer in this technology, there is still plenty of time to invest in this fast-growing sector. Below, therefore, we take a look at 5 of the biggest 3D printing companies as follows:

 

  • Stratasys (SSYS)

This is the largest 3D printing company by revenue and also boasts the largest scale in terms of the 3D printers it has installed. SSYS is characterized by a decent midcap valuation, operates soundly year after year and put up an incredible market-beating performance in 2013. The company recently acquired MakerBot and the buyout not only gave it more scale, but it has also given it more control of Thingverse- the hottest open-source forum for sharing 3D printing designs. Here, whoever who owns a MakerBot can browse blueprints from anywhere across the globe and access them for free or buy them if the creators allow. SSYS is also one of the leading VPN companies in Asia. 

 

  • 3D Systems (DDD)

This is, arguably, the biggest and, perhaps, the best known 3D printing company. It is also the largest stock both in terms of total revenue and market capitalization. Since 2013, DDD stock has doubled and it shows no signs of letting up. The reason for this staggering growth lies in its numbers with quarter earnings in 2013 turning up revenues of more than $136 million, up 50% from the previous year. In fact, DDD stock has been profitable every single quarter since the beginning of 2009 when the Great Recession was in full effect. 3D systems is also heavily involved in Tyvek-based printing.  This is proof positive that this is a real business with real potential.

 

  • Voxeljet (VJET)

Smaller than Stratasys or DDD, Voxeljet is a much more speculative play on the 3D printing stage that caters mainly to industrial clients such as Doranix industrial printers. Having only recently gone public, the company remains untested and there is little data about their operations. But while its stock is not really well known by consumers or investors, it does have a big tail wind behind its back in the form of R&D plans. Voxeljet has and continues to invest heavily in research and development, with a portfolio of over 150 U.S. and international applications and patents. The company raised over $84 million in its IPO three years ago which should go a long way in putting these patents into action and consequently seize the opportunity in the fast-evolving 3D printing space.

3d printing 2

 

  • ExOne (XONE)

EXoNE is a much smaller, and by extension, more speculative company than, say, 3D systems. The company is yet to turn a profit and its anemic revenues are only in the tens of millions of dollars annually but if you want to access the ground floor of the 3D printing industry, then ExOne might just be your best last chance.

ExOne specializes in 3D printers producing both production parts and prototypes, and has found a niche in several industries, including energy and automobiles. While it may lack the consumer appeal of a MakerBot, its enterprise focus could mean that the company is built more on sustainable sales than a simple fad appeal among tech junkies looking to catch the latest trend.

 

  • ProtoLabs (PRLB)

PRLB is the odd man out in this group of 3D printing companies because it is technically a computerized numerical control manufacturer rather than a 3D printing company. This is a fancy way of saying that ProtoLabs conducts high-tech machining using computer-controlled methods and robots to create things and machinery operate- not exactly 3D printing, but pretty close. PRLB produces custom-machined parts and injection-molded plastic parts for clients around the world denoting its business-orientation.

7 Biggest South American Banks 2016

Banco De brazil

Following a turbulent period in the 1980s and 1990s, South American banks are beginning to slowly come into their own. Buoyed by the adoption of international regulatory standards and a number of thriving economies throughout Latin America, the region’s financial services sector is undergoing a period of enormous transformation. Today, the 10 biggest banks in South America are largely concentrated in Mexico and Brazil with the latter claiming the five biggest institutions in terms of asset size while the former plays host to four other banks. Below, therefore, we take a look at 7 of the largest banks in South America as follows:

  1. Banorte, Mexico

In the wake of Mexico’s financial crisis in the 90s, Banorte was quick to act by acquiring multiple banks and quickly establishing its presence throughout the country. Known in official circles as Grupo Financiero Banorte, the bank offers investment services, insurance and annuity products, retirement funds, retail banking products, and warehousing capabilities. Banorte boasts an asset base of $74 billion.

  1. Banamex, Mexico

Banamex was founded in 1884 through the merger of Banco Mercantil Mexicano and Banco Nacional Mexicano and is now officially a Citigroup subsidiary. The bank’s asset base stands at $85 billion and boasts more than 20 million customers as well as over 1,700 branches. Some of the financial firms under the Banamex umbrella include Afore Banamex retirement plan services, Banamex insurance, and Accival brokerage services.

  1. BBVA Bancomer, Mexico

Bancomer, a subsidiary of Spanish company BBVA, is Mexico’s biggest bank in terms of deposits and assets ($101 billion in assets). Its revenue stream includes among others mutual fund and insurance management, stock brokerage services, and retail banking operations. BBVA Bancomer now boasts nearly 7,750 ATMs and 1,800 branches spread throughout the country.

  1. Caixa Economica Federal, Brazil

Established in the late 1960s, Ciaxa is considered a ‘private government entity’ owing to its close relationship with the Finance Ministry in Brazil. It plays a key role in implementing national housing policies and executing income transfer programs whilst also managing Brazil’s lottery program. Caixa Economica Federal boasts an asset base in excess of $380 billion.

  1. Banco Bradesco, Brazil

Based in Sao Paulo, Banco Bradesco serves business as well as individual clients and offers retirement plans and insurance services besides the traditional banking products. With an asset base of over $391 billion, Banco Bradesco is currently the second-largest privately owned financial institution as well as Brazil’s third-largest bank.

  1. Itau Unibanco Holding, Brazil

Serving 40 million customers through a network of 28,000 ATMs and more than 4,000 branches, Itau provides merger and acquisition support, investment banking operations, as well traditional corporate banking services. In addition, Itau Unibanco Holding also works closely with more than 700 institutional clients in Asia, United States, and Europe. With an asset base of more than $445 billion, it is little wonder that it has such global outreach.

  1. Banco do Brasil, Brazil

With an asset base of over $555 billion, the government-run Banco do Brasil is, undoubtedly, South America’s most dominant bank. Besides lending to businesses and individuals, this behemoth also offers foreign exchange capabilities and asset management services. Banco do Brasil has its headquarters in Brasilia but also has operations in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and North America.