The quick and dirty: I'm selling my house and downsizing. I'm using VA loan for my new primary residence so my proceeds can go directly to a down payment for an investment property. I did almost the same thing about 20 years ago and it worked well for me...this time I'm thinking about spreading the wealth a little bit by starting an LLC or something similar in which I can include co-investors and also invest in the names of my kids to purchase and manage properties for the sake of accumulating a little wealth. (more inside) [more inside]
I’ve started a long term job search and would like some advice on the ethics and potential pitfalls of approaching a company that I’ve been working with in my current job. [more inside]
Hello good folks of MeFi, I'll be a college senior later this year, and I'm having a lot of trouble deciding whether I should apply to MBA programs this fall. If you have a minute--or several, this is a long one--please give me your opinions, reality checks, and/or virtual smacks upside the head. [more inside]
Can an alarm company push you into a longer contract because the alarm won't work without an expensive upgrade? [more inside]
Next week I'll spend several days together with clients from Shanghai coming to Europe for a project we are producing for them. As it's the first time we are working for a Chinese client (specifically: an advertising agency and their client), it would be great to know in advance any specific business etiquette (beyond usual international practice), and any relevant cultural pointers to keep in mind during our work together during the day, and dinners (that we will be offering) during the evenings. [more inside]
I'm going into the oyster business! Help me learn more. [more inside]
Within five minutes of meeting the partners of this fashion jewelry company I knew that ship was gonna sink. I signed up anyway because the pay was decent. I fully intended to be the last rat standing. I wasn't expecting the ship to break into two pieces. Now I'm trying to decide which half is going to float longer. [more inside]
Are there any business discussion groups or fora out there where SME owners and entrepreneurs share thoughts and ideas? Something like Ask/Metafilter but strictly business oriented.
I am half remembering an interesting fact...please help me remember the whole thing. I seem to remember their was a business (a bar maybe, or a store chain?) that had a policy of allowing actors without a permanent address to receive mail at their business. I think it is/was a long tradition, can't remember if the business was related to theatre or not. Thanks!
I am looking for a straightforward British economic business plan financials calculator for Excel so that I can look serious! I found a similar thing from startupmodels.com but it is really for the USA. Any signposting to something comprehensive with built in calculations?
What are some good tips or processes for finding the right people to rebuild a web site. [more inside]
So, I'm trying to pay the filing fees online that I never got around to. The personal tax account I made, my business tax ID number is attached to as well, HOWEVER, it's not indicating that I owe anything. I looked everywhere on the site menu to see how I can pay and it says I owe nothing (I owe a lot, even with no sales). Tax man is after me and I don't know what to do, please help! I'm in NY.
I'd like to talk to someone in Newport, Oregon, about business and employment. We've never met, I'd be reaching out to him straight out of the blue. How can I do this without looking like a weirdo? [more inside]
I'm working at a meeting in New Orleans next week - arriving Wednesday afternoon and leaving Saturday afternoon. I have breaks during the day and free evenings. Previously, I toured Jackson Square, Bourbon Street, the Superdome, and the Garden District via streetcar. I'll be staying one block from the French Quarter - a twenty minute walk from Cafe Du Monde, which I will take advantage of daily. [more inside]
Hey hive mind, I'm in desperate need for some last minute help. I'm slated to conduct an 90 minute interview with the dean of a top-tier U.S. west coast based management school (public uni, though the school appears to be independently supported) tomorrow morning, and I'm drawing blanks as to what to ask her. [more inside]
According to this: But how will Bing Rewards be impacted?
I'm returning to freelance copyediting after 10 years on the writing side of nonprofit operations. Educational, business and technical content interest me the most, and that’s where I want to start (I also enjoy research, but how to fit that in?). Can the hive mind help steer me in the right direction? Another challenge: I must do it remotely. Where do I start? [more inside]
An academic has endorsed my business verbally. How can I go about getting a written endorsement to be used on my website, similar to what you see here? (asking for a friend) [more inside]
The small business I work for (~15-20 people) has begun using a set of shared Google Calendars. It's great! Except that every couple of days the events we put in delete themselves. [more inside]
A while back I took up metalsmithing as a hobby. I mostly work with copper, silver, and brass, and create necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings, etc. I think I've reached the point where my stuff is good enough to sell (and people keep telling me I should)! Yay! But...what do I call it? [more inside]
I'm closing my LLC. Am I still on the hook for recurring expenses that were set up for the now-defunct company? Example: the LLC had a contract with an alarm company for monitoring, and there are still several years left on the contract. Does my closed LLC have to keep paying the alarm company? I'm in Washington state, if that matters. I know y'all ain't my law-talking persons, but just in principle, is this a liability that is limited?
Asking for a friend: I want to start an LLC in NYC and sell yummy sweet things. Most of the requirements are pretty straightforward, but the newspaper publication requirement runs over a thousand dollars! Is there any way to get around having to pay such crazy high Certificate of Publication fees? (I am in Queens, if it makes a difference.) Thanks!!
Roadblocked on names for my bakery endeavor. Do you like cookies, and naming things that aren't pets? Come on in. [more inside]
My friend is embarking on a potentially disastrous business idea. Should I try to dissuade him? How do I do that tactfully, without sabotaging our relationship? [more inside]
My friend wants a name for her new business that includes barbering, Indian head massage and henna tattooing. She liked the names "Barber on a Bike" and "The Tonsorial Artist" but these are both taken. Any further suggestions? We are in the UK.
Are there areas outside the U.S. -- or well-run organizations within it -- where the words Invoice and Receipt are properly used interchangeably? Cultural issues below [more inside]
I'm in need of some image reference for Chinese business interiors, with an emphasis on decor vs. architecture. [more inside]
I left a cushy job 7 years ago to start my own business in IT. The company posted huge losses during the first three years of operation and I even had to sell my house in order to survive and keep the company afloat. Although the business is doing increasingly better, the hardship of the past years has taken its toll on my morale and I sometimes feel that I cannot take it anymore. How do I motivate myself to keep going? [more inside]
I'm a Canadian working in Toronto with an incorporated business, a business chequing account with one of the major banks (Canadian currency only), and a Paypal account connected to that chequing account. What should I consider when deciding whether to invoice American clients in Canadian or American dollars? [more inside]
Service that will receive documents by mail and scan and OCR the documents for me [more inside]
I have what I think is a really good idea for a social networking website, kind of along the lines of airbnb or meetup. If it was done right, I think it could be very popular. But the problem is that I have zero business knowledge and zero computer/coding/web design knowledge, and therefore I have no leverage with those I'd have to partner with. All I have is an idea. [more inside]
How does an on-demand streaming site pay a cast and crew? [more inside]
One of my favorite colleagues has a cat, and it is dying. She is just waiting on tests to come back from the vet so they can decide if palliative care is an option or not. I'd like to do something nice to let her know that I'm thinking of her, but need ideas that won't memorialize me as "That girl who did that crazy thing in a misguided attempt to nice." Also looking for a sanity check - if this is a bad idea, please say so (and why). [more inside]
I'm working on a novel (yeah, yeah) in which the bad guys are, among other things, a couple of rival business-criminal assholes. I know nearly zero about business, finance, and politics, and I don't want to talk about these folks in ways that show me to be the faffy prancing buffoon I really am. [more inside]
At a picnic with some friends, I gave everyone ten-ish minute massages (I am a massage therapist). It was a spontaneous gesture and I really enjoyed doing it. As I was leaving, a friend slipped an envelope in my bag. When I got home and opened it, there was a card with money inside, thanking me for their "first session". I feel like this turned a spontaneous act of goodwill and friendship into a business transaction. I'm hurt, saddened, and a little offended. I didn't want money or ask for it, and I don't think that I said or did anything implying otherwise. Now I feel like I'm not their friend, I'm hired help. How do I address this?
How nice is too nice of an electronic use policy? [more inside]
I live in a smallish (Canadian) city an hour outside of a large city. I moved for work four years ago, and for a variety of reasons am feeling an increasing urgency to move back to the Big City. I am trying to figure out ways to do this, weighing my options, and am curious if anyone has any suggestions, or can point out repercussions of each option I hadn't considered? [more inside]
What is the best topic with lots of reference material that deals in International Business Ethics? Something like a review on international bribery or the sale of vaccines or baby formula for profit. I'm looking for the topic that will be the easiest to write because there is so much reference material available. [more inside]
I am going in for an interview at the place I am currently temping. What should I wear? [more inside]
My dad runs a small business in the Bay Area, California, repairing laser printers and copiers and selling toner cartridge. The repairs take place on-site, and usually are for other small businesses; home printers are generally too cheap to be worth repairing, and you can't get parts. The company consists of him, a printer repair technician, the occasional contract technician, and an answering service for backup. My dad is not technologically saavy, but he can use email (Outlook, arrgh), ACT (sort of), and our user-friendly scanner. He recently got interested in DemandForce as a possible marketing company to attract new business, but the reviews I have read have made me deeply skeptical. So, does anyone know of a great marketing company for a small business providing services and supplies? What should my dad look for and look out for? Advice is welcome, but specific recommendations of marketing companies (especially that you still use) are what I'm most looking for.
Do you have suggestions for a system that will help me track the many new contacts I'm making as I start up my business? At the moment it's a mish-mash of notebooks, my phone, email, google docs and my (increasingly full) memory of conversations and phone calls. These might be people who've contacted me for a proposal, or it could be someone who says 'You should talk to my friend who does X - I'll put you in touch' and I want to remember to follow up with them later. [more inside]
On Monday, I start my first non self- or under-employed job in five years. It is with a very large (4000+ employees) company that's a big player in their field, and I am very happy and grateful to have the job. But, as I'm sitting here filling out the employee paperwork I'm faced with a "New PC Employee Acceptance Form". It seems I will be issued a company laptop, but I will also be charged $70/month that "covers XXX Company's standard for PC hardware, software and maintenance". This was never discussed in my salary negotiations. Questions: Is this normal? and, Is this an expense I will be able to write off at tax time?
I'd like to start on online-base media/information/advice business, and I'm having trouble deciding on where to incorporate. [more inside]
I recently started a business and have registered the business name with various municipalities. The relevant Twitter account name is already taken, but has never tweeted and has 3 followers. Is there any chance I could get this handle from Twitter? [more inside]
I am a free-lance bookkeeper seeking new clients. I would like to meet prospects at a Brooklyn restaurant. Ideally it would be moderately priced, available for lunch or dinner, quiet, well-lit and have wi-fi access. Anything that has 4 out of those 5 would be super, and anyplace with all of them is superb.
I'm trying to recall a business/self-help book. The main idea was that setting goals and pacing yourself is counterproductive, and that accomplishment happens by immersing one's self in a big idea. Steve Jobs, etc. I believe the cover was an illustration of a businessman opening a shirt to reveal a superhero costume. There may have been a critique of Tony Schwartz' energy management model inside. It was probably written in the last ten years. Can anyone name the book?
What's the cheapest and easiest way to get a business's credit report? It's my business (USA corporation.) I'm mainly interested in the overall score and the list of items affecting the score more than the details of each item.
Can anyone recommend a good 'affordable' accountant that could reach out to the IRS and get the straight scoop on an IRS mishap (on my part mostly) from 2007-2008? Would like to get this straightened out as soon as possible. [more inside]
A fellow aspiring entrepreneur and friend of mine is in desperate need of help. Time is of the essence! Here's the story: Two years ago he created his own business that sells custom hand-made clothes and products. He owns a website and is on all of the normal social media. One of his most effective tools to connect with customers is through instagram. He's worked hard over the years to develop a fan base of over 27K followers. Mysteriously, last night this account was hacked. They changed the password, hacked the business email, and have taken control of the brand. This account is the business' main source of revenue and advertisement. Although he's trademarked the company and taken all the normal preventative measures, the admin. at instagram claims there's nothing they can do to help. Assuming this is true, what are his available options? Essentially, my friend's ship just got hijacked by some evil bastards and he's going to need a seal team to get it back. [more inside]