General

  • Working With Credit Repair Agencies: What To Know Before You Sign On The Dotted Line

    As someone who hopes to start up her own business, having good credit is incredibly important. This is because, since your business is very young (potentially not even officially launched yet), it has not yet been able to build up a credit history of its own. So, unless you’re already wealthy and plan on funding everything out of your own pocket, it is your credit history and rating that will determine whether or not you can qualify for the funding and loans you need to get up and running.

    Even when you know that your credit is good, this is scary. If you’ve got blemishes on your record or have a bad credit history, it isn’t just scary; it is discouraging. How do you convince a lender to give your company money when your credit report says that you’ve been a disaster at managing your own?

    First, let’s stop this spiral before it actually gets started. Having blemishes and problems on your credit report is not the end of the world. Your credit history is fluid and the mistakes you made in the past will not, however much it feels that way now, haunt you forever. It is also worth noting that your credit score and history can be fixed.

    If you have the time, fixing your credit is even something that you can do yourself. Here is what you do:

    • Get your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies.
    • Go through those reports and dispute all of the mistakes you find (yes, all of them. There is no such thing as a mistake that is “too small to report,”).
    • Go to all of your open accounts and ask for lower interest rates and better repayment terms.
    • Ask them to issue letters to the credit reporting agencies about your good standing.
    • Try to negotiate down what you owe so that your debt to income ratio looks better.
    • Pay down your debts while building up good credit.

    That’s pretty overwhelming isn’t it? In fact, if you’re not careful, fixing your credit could become your full time job for a while. This is why so many people choose to work with credit repair agencies and debt consolidation companies.

    Credit Repair: Your Fairy Godmother?

    A lot of credit experts will tell you that it is best to do all of your credit repair yourself. They will tell you that working with a credit repair agency or debt consolidator is just one step up from bankruptcy. They will insist that using a credit repair agency will result in a massive black mark on your credit history. They are wrong. For a busy adult–especially one who is working to start her own business–hiring a credit repair agency is the best thing she can do.

    For one thing, they are incredible time savers. You hire the agency, pay your fee and then carry on with your life while they do the credit repair work behind the scenes and report their progress periodically. More importantly, though, credit repair agencies and debt consolidation companies have resources that you do not. They are better at negotiating terms and interest rates and are better at tracking responses to debt verification and mistake correction. The trick is to make sure that you work with a company that is reputable because there are a lot of scam artists out there.

    So how do you tell them apart? How do you make sure that the agency you hire is going to do what you need it to do (and do it well)?

    Understand How Credit Repair Works

    We’ve given you a basic overview of the process involved with credit repair here. This is just a summary, for the sake of time and space. Make a point to learn about the different aspects of credit repair and how they work. Knowing the lingo and understanding the process will help you spot scammers who will try to prey on your naivete.  If you know more than the agency does, run and run fast.

    Understand What Credit Repair Agencies Can and Cannot Do

    A good credit repair agency will be upfront about the fact that there are some things they simply cannot do. They cannot get items that are true (however unfortunate they may be) erased from your history. They cannot make a company list you as being in good standing if you are not. They cannot put old good accounts on and take current bad accounts off. They can, however, work to make sure that you look as good as possible on paper. They can counsel you on safe methods for building good credit. Any agency that promises to erase the bad stuff completely should not be trusted.

    Understand That Credit Repair Takes Time

    It takes a minimum of thirty days for changes to be made to your credit report. Any agency that tells you otherwise is lying. A good way to tell the good from the bad is to look at the reviews that get posted about them online. Reputable agencies will have reviews that talk about how the credit repair process worked over time.

    Read the Contract

    Most credit repair agencies will charge a recurring fee for prolonged repair. Make sure you can cancel the service at any time. This is because, after six months or so, you likely won’t need that credit agency anymore. Alternatively, ask about packages that allow you to switch to basic monitoring once the bulk of the repair work has been completed.

    Finally, remember: you need your credit to be as good as possible if you want to qualify for financing. If that means hiring some help, so be it! You wouldn’t hesitate to hire a professional to help you with your taxes, right? Why are you hesitant about this?

  • 5 Ways To Make An Extra $500 This Month

    500-2If the holidays left your bank account looking like a disaster, it’s time to get back on track!

    I am going to teach you 5 ways to make an extra $500 this month.  

    Yes, this month!

    Here’s what we’ll be talking about:

    • Starting A Service Based Business
    • Creating An Info Product
    • Teaching An Online Class
    • Creating Kindle Books On Amazon
    • Earning Money With Affiliate Marketing

    I’ve personally done all of these things, and I know they work! If I can do it, you can do it!

    Click Here To Learn More And Register Now

  • Idea For Clients: New Year Cards

    happy2014The holidays are BUSY. Maybe you thought you’d send your clients a holiday card or gift… but maybe you didn’t get around to it. If that sounds like you, don’t worry.

    You can send New Year Cards. Yes, New Year Cards! They’re not just for clients, of course. You can send them to friends and family.

    It’s a nice way to let people know you’re thinking of them and that you hope they have a great 2014. Minted offers a HUGE assortment to choose from.

    Another bonus: When you send New Year Cards, you don’t have to worry about happy-new-year inadvertently offending anyone’s religious beliefs. EVERYONE celebrates New Year!

    In addition to these cute cards, Minted offers a wide selection of  wedding supplies, stationary, gifts, journals, calendars, paper goods, art prints, and photography.

    Here are some of their other cute products:

    minted1

    minted2
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  • Win A $100 Gift Card To OfficeMax

    omI love office supplies. Pens, paper, organizers, you name it. I can spend a long time in an office supply store!

    I recently received an email from OfficeMax, letting me know about their new Services Center – and how it can help small business owners.  Here is a quote from the email I received:

    “OfficeMax recently introduced its new Services Center within its stores …  The Services Center offers an extensive portfolio of more than 40 services designed, from credit card processing and payroll services to IT support and cloud storage solutions, freeing up more time for business owners to focus on growth.”

    Whether you need help with creating logo gear for your business, storing documents in the cloud, want to create some holiday greeting cards for your clients, etc – the Services Center can help!

    OfficeMax gave me a $100 gift card to try out the new Services Center – and they are giving a $100 gift card to one of my readers!

    With last week being Thanksgiving and this week being “catch up on everything” week, I haven’t had time to try out the new Services Center in person – but I will be soon. And I bet you want to try it out, too!

    To enter to win the $100 gift card, please leave a comment on this post and tell me what services you need help with in your business!

    I’ll be picking the winner at random at 5pm Eastern on December 18. Good Luck!

    Disclosure: I received a gift card from OfficeMax in exchange for an authentic, first hand review of the company’s services; the company is also providing the gift card for the giveaway. All opinions are entirely my own. This post is in compliance with the FTC and its regulations.

    Sign Up For My Newsletter To Be The First To Know Who Won The Gift Card! You’ll Also Receive Weekly Biz Tips, Free Biz Guides, And More!






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  • Blog Posts & Graphics – Done For You!

    wishOne of the hardest parts about having an online business is constantly coming up with new blog posts and graphics!

    You NEED content – but it can be hard to find the time to create content when you’re busy running your business.

    Today’s “Awesome Wednesday” special is a set of pre-written blog posts – and pre-made graphics! (And for a very special price!)

    Click Here To See A Sample

    With this special, you’ll receive 60 Pre-Written Blog Posts
    10 Posts Each On The Following Topics:

    Healthy Eating, Organic Gardening, Alternative Therapies,
    Green Energy, Wedding Planning, and Weight Loss.

    You can use these on your blog as is, or you can change them to fit your needs. You can even bundle them together to create ebooks. You can sell them or give them to your newsletter lists. Add affiliate links to boost your income!

    You’ll also receive 30+ Pre-made Graphics – Includes BOTH the JPEG and Photoshop files so you can alter the graphics if you wish.

    Use them as “Wordless Wednesday Posts,” add them to Pinterest to get more traffic to your site, etc.

    Click Here To Purchase Now For Just $10

    Remember – this price is only good until 10pm Eastern today! So don’t miss it!

     

  • Holiday Marketing Workbook – Get A Sneak Peek

    ImprimirThe Holidays Are Officially Here – and if you haven’t started planning out your marketing, you better get busy. Like, now.

    Here’s a little inspiration for you – it’s a sneak peek at my Holiday Marketing Workbook

    Click here to get a free sample!

    My Holiday Marketing Workbook set contains the following:
    – Holiday Marketing Workbook
    – Working With Bloggers Workbook
    – 30 Blog Post Ideas
    – Blog & Website Checklist
    – Social Media Checklist
    – Twitter Party Checklist
    – Sample promotion plan with timelines, so that you can plan your promotions

    The holiday season can be your BEST season for sales! But you have to be ready! You can’t just wing it and hope for the best.

    You can purchase the full workbook set for only $19 – but only until Dec 6. After that, it’s off the market for 2013.

    Click here to purchase

  • JumpStart Your Biz For 2014!

    Do you feel stuck? Do you feel like your business needs a push – or maybe a shove?

    It doesn’t matter if you’ve been in business for 5 years or 5 days. This is the time of the year when people get a little sluggish. It’s cold and dark outside. Sitting on the couch and eating cookies while watching TV may sound fun – but it’s not going to get your business anywhere.

    This may be the end of 2013 – but there’s a big ol’ bright and shiny New Year coming up fast! Let’s make it the BEST business year, ever!

    My brand new JumpStart 2014 Program is just the thing to help you stay motivated and grow your business!

    This six-week program begins on December 9 and runs through January 17.

    You’ll Receive Weekly Videos, Workbooks, And Checklists On The Following Topics:

    Week 1 – Goal Setting & Time Management
    Week 2 – De-Clutter Your Biz To Make Room For New Things
    Week 3 – Creating Passive Income
    Week 4 – Make Over Your Marketing – Including Social Media, Newsletters, & More!
    Week 5 – Start Outsourcing To Get More Done
    Week 6 – Putting Everything Together And Creating Your 2014 Business Plan

    As part of my Black Friday special, I’m offering this program to you from now through December 2 for only $49

    Click Here To Purchase Now For $49

    You can even choose to pay in 2 installments of $27

    The regular price for this program will be $99 – don’t miss your chance to save $50 and get a JumpStart on 2014!

  • Big Toy Giveaway – Boys

    giveaway-boyIt’s holiday season – and who doesn’t love giving away toys?!  I’m super excited to offer my readers three different toy giveaways – this one for boys, as well as a giveaways for girls and a giveaway for toddlers.

    These toys were given to me by the toy companies. My nephews are at the age where they only care about video games and my niece  just turned 1, so she isn’t ready for big kid toys yet. I want these toys to go to a child who can play with them and appreciate them.

    Here’s what’s included in the Boy Giveaway:

    How To Enter: Just leave a comment on this post! That’s it! For an extra entry, you can tweet about this (your tweet must include a link back to this post). Be sure to come back and leave a comment, so I can verify your tweet. (Don’t forget to follow me @indiebizchicks). I’ll be picking the winner at random at 5pm Eastern on December 4. Good Luck!

    Disclaimers: I admit – these giveaways do not equal in retail value. Remember – these toys were given to me by the companies. I have no control over what was donated and what wasn’t. Also, I did separate these into Toddler, Girl, and Boy to make this a little easier. I am not trying to discriminate against gender. If you think your daughter would rather play with the toys in the boy giveaway, go ahead and enter that. If you think your son would rather play with the toys in the girl giveaway, it’s fine for you to enter that one.

    Thank you to these small businesses for sponsoring these giveaways and helping me to cover the shipping charges: Lil’ Alice, Enchanted Fairy Soaps, Run Leap Launch, Work From Home With Kids, Coconut Palm Designs, Serenity Coaching Alliance, and Books For Kids With Shannon

    BONUS: I’m also doing a giveaway for a $25 gift card to ErinCondren.com, so if you want a little something for yourself, click here to enter!

    P.S. Sign up for my mailing list to be the first to hear who the winner is!






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  • Big Toy Giveaway – Girls

    giveaway-girlWhat’s better than the holidays? Giving away gifts during the holidays! That’s why I’m so excited to be offering this giveaway of toys – but also two more boxes of toys – a giveaway for toddlers and  giveaway for boys.

    These toys were given to me by the toy companies. My nephews are at the age where they only care about video games and my niece  just turned 1, so she isn’t ready for big kid toys yet. I want these toys to go to a child who can play with them and appreciate them.

    Here’s what’s included in the Girl Giveaway:

    How To Enter: Just leave a comment on this post! That’s it! For an extra entry, you can tweet about this (your tweet must include a link back to this post). Be sure to come back and leave a comment, so I can verify your tweet. (Don’t forget to follow me @indiebizchicks). I’ll be picking the winner at random at 5pm Eastern on December 4. Good Luck!

    Disclaimers: I admit – the toy giveaways are not equal in retail value. Remember – these toys were given to me by the companies. I have no control over what was donated and what wasn’t. Also, I did separate these into Toddler, Girl, and Boy to make this a little easier. I am not trying to discriminate against gender. If you think your daughter would rather play with the toys in the boy giveaway, go ahead and enter that. If you think your son would rather play with the toys in the girl giveaway, it’s fine for you to enter that one.

    Thank you to these small businesses for sponsoring these giveaways and helping me to cover the shipping charges: Lil’ Alice, Enchanted Fairy Soaps, Run Leap Launch, Work From Home With Kids, Coconut Palm Designs, Serenity Coaching Alliance, and Books For Kids With Shannon

    BONUS: I’m also doing a giveaway for a $25 gift card to ErinCondren.com, so if you want a little something for yourself, click here to enter!

    P.S. Sign up for my mailing list to be the first to hear who the winner is!






    Name:
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