The Blog Of TL Wall Accounting

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Archive for November, 2014

Are Sales Always Economical?

This weekend is one of the biggest sales periods of the year, and every year around this same time it seems like the best deals of the year are coming up. Whereas it seems like the best time to save money, one has to be wary of some of the deception that takes place at the same time.

For instance, there are many smartphone deals this weekend, and all of them might seem like you’re going to save a lot of money. You might, but you need to pay attention because most of the phones on sale are already obsolete. It’s rare to see the latest models having big discounts at this time of year, and truth be told, if you see a discount it’s probably not a new discount but something that was already available with a switch in plan that’s just been renamed for the holiday.

There are also places you’ll go to where you’ll see discounts of up to 50%, but if you do some homework and look at the prices during the year you’ll see those items have been marked up and then discounted, to the point where your savings aren’t really what they’re purported to be. That’s pretty sleazy but there’s nothing illegal about it.

The biggest thing to take into account is whether the item is something you actually need versus want; that is, if it’s for you. If you’re buying gifts for someone else we’d hope that you had a budget for that sort of thing. If not, it’s worth taking some time to think about things you really need, even if it’s for business purposes, and then determine if it’s worth the purchase.

Business furniture is always a good purchase at this time of year because it’s an industry where, sometimes, moving inventory is relatively static. It also works because things like desks and chairs rarely goes out of style.

Computers are something you need to take a good look at, even if you need one. It’s good to have an understanding of things like RAM and storage capacity and chipset. For instance, if you need office computers mainly for email and bookkeeping then you don’t need anything with 8GB of RAM, whereas if you’re making 3D models and the like the extra capacity is a great benefit. The same goes for storage, since most businesses will never reach a level where they’re going to need terabytes of files. As for chipsets, there’s mainly two (the names of which we won’t mention here) and, truthfully, both are good but one has a name that gets more respect and thus can drive the price of a computer higher than needed.

Overall, it’s best to figure out how much money you’re willing to spend after you put together a list of things you want, whether it’s for business or pleasure. Also, the best thing about shopping in today’s world is that you can take some time to do a little online research to see where you can get the best price.
 

5 Things You Need To Know In Trying To Sell Your Home

Are you looking to sell your home? No, we’re not buying, but we know that it’s a stressful time. You put your house on the market for a certain price and if you’re lucky you’ll get it. You hold an open house and people seem to be rejecting your home, or it prompts offer for way less money than you want.

It turns out that the things most people look at when they’re trying to sell their home aren’t the things that most buyers are looking at. If you’re looking to maximize the visibility of your home for potential buyers, and possibly make more money from the sale, there are some specific things you should look at.

We’re going to give you 4 of those things; the fifth is a money tip because, after all, we are accountants. Here we go!

1. Make sure your lawn is immaculate but not overly cluttered. Remember the line “you only get one chance to make a first impression”? Seems that’s true when it comes to homebuyers, especially new homebuyers. Sometimes the outside of a house might be enough to prompt someone to say they don’t even want to see the rest of the house. Having a lawn that’s trimmed nicely can do wonders. Also, if you have your home heavily landscaped with bushes and trees and many rock patterns you might want to think about getting rid of some of that. Few people move into a house without wanting to put their touch on it, including the lawn.

2. Work to emphasize open spaces. Do you have a table with trinkets sitting in a hallway, even a big hallway? Remove that, as well as some of your pictures if you have a lot of them. If you have a dining room with lots of other furniture in there you might want to think about putting it elsewhere. Just like your lawn, people like to put their own stuff into places where you might already have something sitting. You might think you’re showing the space well by enhancing it but instead potential homebuyers see less space than they thought they’d have to work with. Even people who are looking to downsize want rooms that look and feel spacious.

3. Paint all the rooms in the house the same color, preferably some kind of white. Once again, homebuyers aren’t interested in your sense of style. Turns out it’s hard to imagine what a room might look like when you get to it when the walls already have a different color on them, potentially a color the buyer might not like. Almost everyone is used to seeing a white background they can do something with.

4. Clean, clean, clean! Your house probably won’t get the white glove inspection from many buyers but they will notice if things look dusty or dirty. That gives the impression that the house hasn’t been taken care of and that if they move in they’re going to have to do a lot of work to get it the way they want it. The bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchen are obviously your biggest targets but don’t miss the inside of cabinets and drawers and other rooms.

5. You do all of this because for the overwhelming part of the population all the profit is yours. That’s right, the more money you get, the more you get to keep for yourself, after paying off the balance of the mortgage if that’s still an issue. Turns out you can claim capital gains on a primary residence for up to $500,000, or $250,000 if you’re single, as long as you pass the residency requirements in your state and haven’t sold another primary property within a 2-year period. When you think about it this way, if you’re looking to get $150,000 for your home and you keep getting offered $125,000, maybe spending $5,000 to take care of the things mentioned about will get you the rest of what you’re asking for; sometimes you have to spend money to make money.