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There they are, the fresh-faced freshers on their way to university campus. Every one of them appears to be 19 years old — with a confidence that belies inexperience.

And they’re all blissfully unaware of one thing – heading to university is a disaster for your finances.

With tuition fees skyrocketing to £9,000, student living costs through the roof and not enough graduate jobs to go around, many wannabe students are wondering if spending four years studying for an undergraduate degree is worth the time and, more importantly, money.

Education should be valuable in itself, but this is a capitalist economy – if your degree isn’t doing the legwork for you, should you really be doing it?

To help you budget for your further education, we’ve made this quick list of money saving tips and educational alternatives. Enjoy.

Go the distance

There was once a time when the words ‘distance learning’ could be alternated with ‘poor financial investment’ and mean effectively the same thing.

But times change and the world of online distance learning has evolved like the steam engine to the jet engine.

Now, you can study online from anywhere with a Wi-Fi signal, all on a sleek and sophisticated Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). In essence, it’s a similar experience to a brick-and-mortar university.

And here’s the real kicker – it’s half the price.

A standard online degree will cost between £2,000 and £4,000 and will give you a bona fide, respectable degree.

What’s more, the majority of degrees which can be studied online are vocational, meaning you’ll be more likely to receive a job (or at least a promotion) at the end of it.

Try a MOOC

Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) made waves a few years ago for their revolutionary approach to education.

And what was more impressive was their price tag…

They were absolutely free!

There is, however, a catch – these online university modules only last for a maximum of six months and won’t provide you with an official qualification once you’ve completed them.

Despite this, they’ve remained successful – and we’d argue there’s a financial benefit to using them.

This isn’t only because they’re free, but because a MOOC can be used as a taster test before you decide to join a ‘real’ university course.

Imagine the money you’d save if you realised a course wasn’t for you via a MOOC?

Stay local

Student accommodation, the long commute to classes, utility bills in shared flats – the costs mount when you’re studying outside your hometown.

That’s why our final recommendation would be to live in your parent’s home while you study. You’ll save on rent and utilities, and won’t have to commute far if you choose a university that’s local to you.

You may not experience the thrill of moving away, but the financial rewards will be innumerable.

That’s our list! Can you think of any other financial tips for students? Then let us know in the comments below!

 

 

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The term LLC is used to describe a limited liability company, a company that combines taxation benefits of a partnership and a corporation’s limited liability. Instead of having partners, a business owner of an LLC will be called a member. There can be several members or a single member. To form this type of company, an LLC application needs to be filled out. This application will deem your business an LLC and give you a tax ID that helps to identify your company.

Benefits of an LLC

The main benefit of an LLC is that the members have limited liability within the company aside from fraud or criminal activity. Members are not required to hold annual meetings or keep records of meetings. LLC’s can also choose tax election or choose pass-through taxation for members.

Once you decide that you want your business to be an LLC, you will need to fill out LLC forms. These forms can be found online at Gov Doc Filing, making it easy for you to fill out the necessary paperwork and get the ball rolling in identifying your business as an LLC.

The process of filling out paperwork is simple and once submitted, it takes only a short time before you receive the nine-digit tax ID number that will be associated with your business. The proper filing of the business, as well as tax ID paperwork for an LLC, needs to be completed. At Gov Doc Filing, all options are offered onsite to assist in becoming an LLC.

If at any time you are confused or have questions about the online process, support can be used for assistance. By contacting support online, you can have help filling out the paperwork to see your business become an LLC type entity in a timely manner.

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The offshore financial services industry faced a challenging year in 2017 thanks to revelations of the tax arrangements of the great and the good in the Paradise Papers, the UK Criminal Finances Act 2017 introducing tougher tax compliance for corporations and a continuing global drive for tighter regulation.

So 2018 doesn’t herald a vintage year for the sector — but regimes that tighten up compliance and adapt to new technologies are still likely to survive.

Here are four offshore banking trends to watch out for in 2018.

EU withdrawal

A hard Brexit is looking increasingly unlikely for Britain.

But some observers have speculated that one of the major motivations for Britain’s EU withdrawal was impending EU tax evasion regulations set to come into force in 2019.

The transitional arrangements central to a softer divorce mean the UK will still be subject to these regulations — so expect certain political stakeholders to continue to pressure the government to walk away from Europe with no deal at all, enabling Westminster to operate its tax system unfettered.

Cryptocurrency

It’s currently possible under certain circumstances for US courts to grant a creditor permission to recoup funds from an offshore account.

But in 2018 more investors are likely to use cryptocurrencies as asset protection tools.

Digital currencies like Bitcoin are stored on a digital ledger called the blockchain. And accounts containing these currencies are extremely secure, decentralised and outwith the jurisdiction of courts — making them a safe bet for any individual or entity who wants to secure a store of untouchable assets.

Immigrant workers

Individual workers earning a living outside their native nations will also continue to use offshore bank accounts in 2018.

And avoiding tax might not be the main reason these earners turn away from traditional high street banks — the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FACTA) introduced in 2010 means that banks are forced to share information on foreign account holders.

The administration costs involved in servicing foreign customers are often prohibitive — meaning these individuals have to turn to offshore options in order to receive wages and conveniently pay for rent and utilities.

The offshore industry serves these types of workers in a practical and reasonable manner, but this function rarely hits the headlines.

Pension funds

A Westminster pension fund hit the headlines this year when it was revealed it had invested millions from MPs’ retirement pots in an offshore vehicle in Jersey.

But the reality is that many ordinary workers’ pensions are also invested offshore to protect and maximise their profitability.

And in an era when the cost of living continues to rise rapidly and most of us will have to work into old age, the need to preserve hard-earned funds is greater than ever.

This is an ongoing trend that will continue in 2018 and sheds a little more light on the legitimate ways the offshore banking industry might benefit ordinary workers and savers as well as the financial elite.

Offshore banking is unlikely to ever disappear completely and perhaps more stringent regulation and transparency will see it emerge from the shadows as a legitimate facet of wider financial services.

These four offshore banking trends to watch out for in 2018 will help you evaluate whether banking money offshore is right for you.

Do you use offshore banking services? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

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When it comes to business taxes, some things are a lot more complicated than they are with personal taxes.  For one thing, you have to choose the right type of entity for your business.  You must do this right when you establish your business, as soon as you apply for a federal EIN number.

Once you have your corporation Tax ID number, or whichever kind of EIN you have chosen for your business, it is very hard to change your entity type.  Fortunately, though, some procedures involving the IRS are much simpler.

When Dealing with the IRS Is Simple

For one thing, the EIN application is very simple.  It is just a matter of filling out the application form.  If you fill it out on the IRS-EIN website, you will receive an email with your EIN the same day.

Updating your address when you move is also a very straightforward process.  If you move right before tax time, you can just put your new address on your tax return.  The IRS will automatically update your address.  If you move after filing the return but before getting a refund, you will want to notify the IRS quickly of your change of address.  This way, you can receive your refund without delay.

How to Notify the IRS of Your New Address

The most common way to notify the IRS of your address change is to fill out a change of address form.  If you need to notify them quickly, though, you can also notify them by phone.  The agent you speak to will update your address in the system immediately.

It is fast and easy to notify the IRS of a change of address.  You can notify them by mail or by phone.

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Sometimes dealing with customers (especially the difficult ones) can feel like an uphill battle, as though it’s you against them.

Although it seems like you’re on different pages at certain points, there’s one thing you always have in common with even the most exhausting of customers – you’re both trying to save yourself money.

Yup, there’s no denying it. There aren’t many of us who’re not feeling the pinch right now in both our professional and private lives.

Rising costs and slowing growth

Household costs are rising throughout the UK thanks to inflation, and that, in turn, is having a knock-on effect on national economic growth.

At least that’s what estimates from the first financial quarter are currently showing.

Final results are yet to be confirmed but it’s not looking good, with leading economists predicting that growth has halved over the past few months, dropping from 0.7 per cent to just 0.3 per cent in the last quarter.

The general overview is that growing prices are putting off customers, leading to a consumer slowdown that’s got some of the country’s biggest businesses worried.

Challenging the consumer slowdown

This consumer and economic slowdown is a tricky challenge to deal with.

After all, when your costs are rising, raising the prices of your goods or services is often the only option for keeping your business afloat.

But how do you justify your growing prices to cash-strapped customers? How do you keep a hold of them and maintain sales in such a difficult market?

It’s a complex issue that requires careful handling, but here are a few simple and important points about communication to keep in mind as you manoeuvre your business through the next few months. Take a look.

#1: be confident about changes

The ultimate trick to keeping customers on board with price changes is to be confident about the decisions you’re making. Since your staff will be the ones dealing with queries and complaints face-to-face, it’s essential you help them feel the same.

Follow the lead of companies like Nokia or Adobe and turn your employees into brand ambassadors, so they can communicate negative news (like rising prices) effectively and successfully.

And before you implement any changes, make sure your entire team knows exactly what’s going on and the reasons behind price restructuring.

#2: keep branding fresh and exciting

Want your customers to feel like they’re getting value for money, even when your prices are increasing? Then no matter what you’re selling, whether it’s a new product or not, always present it as exciting and fresh.

Take Tensor, the global manufacturer of floor adhesive, as an example. With product names like Bullet Bond, their branding, right down to the word choice and packaging colours used, is designed to entice customers.

If you’re similarly enthusiastic about your products and translate that excitement to your marketing, then customers won’t be able to resist getting caught up too.

#3: communicate changes clearly and honestly

Remember, you and your customers understand each other more than you think, especially when it comes to money. Don’t waste your time trying to hide price increases.

Instead, be candid about the changes you’re making and communicate them clearly. Your customers will appreciate your honesty.

Explain why your prices are going up and state when these changes will be implemented (giving at least 30 days’ notice) through your website and marketing. Look at how Netflix handled their price increases (with an informative email campaign) for some inspiration in managing this situation with flair.

Do you have any other top tips for keeping customers happy with price changes? Leave a comment and let us know.

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