Common Metals Used by Jewellery Manufacturers

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Jewellery ManufacturersBirmingham’s Jewellery Quarter is a quaint place, a favourite stop for many tourists. More than 40% of jewellery in the UK comes from Birmingham. There are more than 500 jewellery companies there today. In fact, many modern developments came from the area.

To know anything about jewellery, Birmingham is where you should go. You can learn about the history and art of jewellery making, and find places to buy tools and raw materials for making your own. The most common metals for jewellery are gold, silver, and platinum.

Gold

Most people associate jewellery with something made of gold in all its forms. Gold is a relatively soft, rare metal that is easy to work with. You can make jewellery using a variety of methods, including casting and threading. You can make a thread 50 miles long or a flat sheet that covers 100 square feet with one ounce of gold, Jewelcast.co.uk states.

Jewellery designers can create unique pieces with gold that is not possible with other metals. It is also non-reactive, which means it will not tarnish or corrode. In most cases, however, jewellery makers do not work with pure gold. They mix it with other metals to make it less soft, especially in casting. Gold alloys show more detail than pure gold and keep its shape longer.

Silver

Silver is not as rare as gold, but it is also a popular metal for jewellery because it is beautiful. It is harder to work with than gold, however, because it conducts heat instead of melting. This is the reason students practice soldering on silver before moving up to gold.

The main problem with pure silver is it tarnishes, so you have to put more effort to keep it shiny. It is also soft, so jewellery makers mix it with other metals to make it more durable. Britannia silver has 95.4% silver, and the rest is another metal, usually copper. However, the most common silver alloy used for jewellery is sterling silver, which has 92.5% silver. Sterling silver is also popular for high-end cutlery and teapots, hence the term “silverware.”

Platinum

Platinum is a metal that looks like silver, but it is much rarer than gold and silver. It is more durable than gold and does not tarnish like silver. Many wedding and engagement rings today are made of platinum. However, its use for jewellery is quite recent. This is because platinum was hard to refine back in the day. Some people even thought it was unripe gold, so it was worthless. Jewellery makers only started to realise its value and use it in 1900, and it works well with most methods. Today, jewellery makers use a mix of 90% platinum and 10% iridium, which has very similar properties to platinum.

Jewellery manufacturers work with all kinds of metals, not just gold, silver, and platinum. The metal and method used to depend on the design. Your best bet to get it right is to go to Birmingham.

Housing Loans: The Responsibility Involved in Homebuying

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Mortgage LoanBuying a house takes a lot of responsibility — from searching for the perfect home and dealing with real estate agencies to preparing legal documents and negotiating with contractors — and the process can drain you in no time. The most challenging part, however, is the preparation for your current and future financial obligations. It’s best to take time and weigh your options to make smart decisions. To point you to the right direction, here are some suggestions when applying for housing loan:

#1: Know your financial capacity

Wasatch Peaks Credit Union and other lending companies say that knowing your financial capacity is important, as it can leverage your loaning options. Put yourself in the lender’s perspective and evaluate your income, credit history, and debt service ratio. Compute the interest rate and your monthly expense. This can help you determine your capacity to repay a loan. And as everyone would say, “never buy anything you can’t really afford”.

#2: Find out the amount you need to borrow

By now you should know the property’s appraised value. Mortgage loan companies usually lend up to 80% of the property’s selling price depending on the circumstances. Discuss the amount you need to borrow from your loan officer, and consult a financial advisor if necessary. Repossession or property foreclosure is the last thing you want to happen, so be smart with your decisions.

#3: Evaluate your financing options

Now that you have fully sorted out your financial capacity, you need to evaluate your financing options. Find out which is the best scheme for you and be familiar with the terms and monthly amortizations.

Keep in mind that mortgage value may differ. Even if your prospects offer the same interest rate, you should also check other hidden charges. Compare the offers thoroughly, so you can have accurate numbers. Late payments can cause you a headache, so know your priorities to avoid penalty fees. Set your calendar for your financial obligations.

These are only some of the things you should know when dealing with housing loans. Again, always take your time and gauge your options.

Mortgages and FICO Scores: What’s The Deal Between the Two?

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fico passed mortgage house loanHome buying can be one of the most exciting experiences of your life. However, because it involves making one of the hardest decisions that can alter your finances and life in the long run, it can also be very stressful.

Since buying a home usually involves borrowing a huge amount of money, it is necessary that you are well-prepared to handle this responsibility, or you can end up swimming in a big pool of debt. One way to prevent financial catastrophe is to make your FICO score look more attractive to lenders.

The Role Your FICO Score Plays in Securing a Mortgage

Keeping a good credit score is one of the most effective ways to secure a mortgage with low interest rates with the help of a reputable mortgage broker. Salt Lake City lending companies agree that the higher your FICO score is, the greater your chances of finding great mortgage offers. This basically means lower interest rates and more options.

Almost all types of lenders take a good look at your financial history. This is how they can tell if you are a high-risk borrower. High-risk borrowers are those who have low credit scores. They either get rejected or are given higher interest rates because their rating may mean being unable to make mortgage payments on time.

Improve Your Credit Score Prior to Mortgage Shopping

With FICO scores being a major consideration in mortgage applications, this is the first thing you should focus on before you actually shop around for a home or a lender.

To start, get a copy of your credit report from all the major credit reporting companies. Ensure there are no mistakes or discrepancies in it. From there, start coming up with a plan to boost your score and make it more attractive to lenders.

Getting help from a mortgage specialist is also very helpful, as they can guide you towards the right path and help you make better financial decisions. Talk to a mortgage broker Salt Lake City homeowners and buyers highly recommend to find out what you can do to groom your FICO.

Alternative Ways to Earn Extra Income When Money is Tight

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MoneyLate on your rent and payday is still nowhere in sight? Does your car need a costly emergency repair yet your credit cards are maxed out? When money is tight, especially during unfavorable economic situations, you may think about turning to non-traditional ways to earn extra cash (by non-traditional, we also mean legal). Here are some of the things that you can try:

Sell Metal Scraps

Check your basement, tool shed, or garage for some scrap metals that are just lying around and sell them to your local recycling center. If you’re not exactly a metal scrap hoarder, you may want to check the refuse areas in your community. Alternatively, you can also ask your neighbors for their discarded metal objects, such as those from broken appliances or play sets. If you want, you can split the profits with them. Since you’re doing them a great favor by cleaning up their junk, they will surely agree to your proposal.

Apply for a Title Loan

If you own a car and have its title, go to the nearest car title loan provider and take out a car title loan. Unlike with other types of loan offers, title loans give you access to some fast cash without the hassle of credit check and income verification.

Invest in Your Creativity

If you love creating arts and crafts, there are plenty of sites that will let you showcase your talent and earn some money at the same time. Etsy and Café Press are two samples you may want to check out.

These are just some of the alternative ways that you can try to earn extra cash. Many of us have been in that humbling situation before — so broke that you’d rummage for loose change in every corner of your house. So, there’s no shame in being proactive and trying any of these.

Why Contractors Give Homeowners the “Wrong” Quotes on Remodelling Projects

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HouseA home renovation is one of the most popular ways a homeowner can increase the value of their property. But, the process isn’t as linear as the call-contractor, approve-the-budget, move-the-bus process that most are led to believe. This is especially true when it comes time for the contractor to calculate the budget of the project, specifically the considerations added in the budget that contractors don’t tell homeowners about.

Just to be clear before we begin, this is more about collective quotes for overall projects such as room remodelling. Specific services such as wall cladding from http://peterbracey.com.au have a more straightforward quoting system, which the following explanation should clear up.

Drumming Up Drama

A contractor needs to be in the industry for at least a few years before they get enough confidence to be able to provide a reliable quote, but even then, they can get it wrong. The best examples of these are the supposed experts on home renovation shows that often have to tell the client they might go over budget, only to pull the project out of the fire at the last second.

Most observers would explain this situation through producers trying to drum up the drama of an otherwise bland project, which is true most of the time. But, how do producers ensure that such a drama occurs without completely endangering the integrity of the contractors on the show? The quotes for projects are dependent on the specific needs of the projects, and are mostly sound if everything goes smoothly, which is the secret behind the drama.

TV and Reality

Problems are inevitable in every project, and contractors know that, which is why they inflate the quote a little bit just in case something goes wrong. If a contractor on a show proposes a budget, they’re quoting the lowest number possible to entice both the homeowners and the viewers. This doesn’t offer a lot of wiggle room when a problem arises, which ensures much needed drama.

Quoting a budget with a buffer is common practice in any industry, because it means that a contractor knows the ins and outs of the industry and prepares for potential obstacles. Not accounting for such difficulties just increases the stress of the project, and makes the contractors look like they have no worldly idea what they’re doing; great for TV, horrible for real life.

Can You Afford a Million-Dollar House?

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HouseSomething worth a million dollars is a colossal undertaking in all manners. Aside from the figures, fulfilling payments for an investment this size will drive anyone to their emotional edge. That’s why choosing which house to buy require serious deliberations before making a decision. It’s nothing like buying an expensive television, where one only needs to be frugal for a few months.

Financing a Million-Dollar Purchase

A considerable amount of money is needed to even think about a million-dollar purchase. A person must have at least $200,000 yearly, after-tax salary. In a major city, mortgage will cost around $60,000. Plus, there’s the interest that comes with the mortgage loan. 30 years fixed is a common mortgage type for Americans, where they need to pay $5,000 monthly amortization for three decades.

The Echelberger Group reminds people that the first headache a buyer will have is the down payment. Before anything starts, they must cough up about $200,000. For some, that’s the amount of a house. But this is the price one will pay for choosing a property worth seven figures.

Looking for an Alternate

Losing interest in buying such an expensive house can hardly be a disappointment. If the buyer can afford it, then yes; but for most people, it’s something they can pass on. An ideal alternate is a house that’s worth less than what’s affordable. Why’s that?

For families, it’s only wise to have some funds tucked away in the bank. Taking care of kids requires money. In addition, a house of less worth doesn’t always mean a buyer is settling for an uglier house. More often than not, it just needs work and it’s good as new again. That’s why the good estate agents always say don’t discount the ugly houses.

Money can buy a big property, but that doesn’t mean guaranteed satisfaction and happiness. A million-dollar house can only give so much before the buyers realize that they overpaid for something they don’t need. Think before buying, and know your limits.

Cautions in Subdividing: 6 Things You Should Beware Of

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LandSubdividing is very popular in Australia these past years. With the ease of application and the possibility of getting triple digit income or higher, there is no doubt this will continue to attract investors.

Property developer, Rcoderesidential.com.au, recommends checking how qualified a property is for subdividing and take care of how you will place your developments. There are a few considerations, though, if you are thinking of buying a property for subdividing later on.

Trees

But not just any tree. Significant trees like those considered indigenous species, such as Norfolk pine tree and Willow Myrtle. Steer clear from these because you cannot cut them unless deemed sick, dead and unsafe by a licensed arborist.

Sewers

You may find out where and how your underground sewer runs through the street. This may come from a licensed plumber. Or else, you may have to fork out for a sewer extension to service your extra block. The same is true with gas connection.

Land levels

If there is a big fall towards the back of the property, you need to consider cleaning landfill, retaining water drainage and walls. These may cost a lot of money.

Zoning

Every council have zones, such as industrial, commercial, open space and residential. Your property falls into a zone that has its own size requirements and may be different to the block of land across the street. With the help of a licensed architect, do some thorough research on this at the government portal.

Soil contamination

Is the soil safe to build on? If the place were a previous plantation or a repair shop, you may find that chemicals and impurities contaminate the soil. Not only is this unfit for long-term vegetation, it may also affect construction projects. You may conduct an inspection of the original site to help you decide on this.

Power and phone availability

This is usually a problem when subdividing in rural areas. You may check it just the same, especially if the electrical power pole could be standing right where you plan to put your new driveway.

Subdividing is truly a modern way to make your property portfolio better. With these few reminders, you may avoid extra expenses and make subdividing work for you.

3 Accounting Practices Every Small Business Should Observe

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The financial aspect of a business is a critical area, especially for startups. In most cases, companies fail because of their failure to manage the finances properly. Of course, you wouldn’t want your very own startup to be part of this statistic.

As long as you stick to these basic accounting practices, your company will surely run without any financial hitch:

income statement reportTrack Expenses

The business you run is all yours, but you have to draw the line between your personal and the business’s expenses. It’s necessary to track every cost you or your business shoulders. With every purchase, make sure that you’re using the business entity name instead of your own. Should you pay for products or services using your own money, be sure that the company reimburses you so that you don’t pay out-of-pocket.

In the case of drawing money from the enterprise’s capital, be aware that the company can consider this a loan. You have one full year to repay the loan before it incurs interest. Especially in partnerships and corporations, you have to be careful with the way you spend money.

Set a Budget for Dues

The last thing you want for your business is to face the tax season without enough money to pay for your taxes. Every start of the fiscal year, run an estimate of how much you have to pay the government. Set aside that estimated amount and adjust every month to ensure you have enough to cover everything.

Know Where You Stand

Never rush your preparations for the tax season. Months ahead of the deadline, make sure that your company accountant reviews every receipt, transaction, and financial document under the company name. Checking and rechecking even the smallest transactions will go a long way to prevent errors with your tax returns. It would help if you will routinely monitor the cash flow and update the software your bookkeepers use.

In the long run, these practices contribute to the progress of your company. When you know how to manage your finances properly, you reduce the risk of committing mistakes with your taxes and cash flow.

The Fellowship of Management Rights

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Fellowship og Management RightsWhen it comes to purchasing management rights, prospective buyers need to employ a financial structure and strategy before they sign on the dotted line. Otherwise, they will be looking at a financial sinkhole, which they will need to keep filling to avoid going bankrupt.

The experience of veterans in the industry, such as Resort Brokers Australia, outlines the people an aspiring manager needs to succeed after gaining management rights. The first thing to do is to get the financial house in order. Hiring an accountant would give people the best possible view of their standing in regards to purchasing management rights. Once the financial structure takes shape, buyers need to hire a reputable agent to aid their purchase.

Many buyers are averse to hiring agents, because the commission on a sale can amount to as much as tens of thousands of dollars. Still, agents should make sure that the sale will uphold the interests of the buyer, or else lose any hope of future sales.

The next person buyers should look for is a management rights lawyer. This will be the most difficult to find, as all legal firms claim that they are experienced in every field of law. Management rights are a specialised field that requires extensive knowledge to handle.

There are few firms that truly specialise in management rights law, and even less than that does it well. Buyers need to network with other managers to find the firm with a respectable record of accomplishment when it comes to this specific field.

A good rule to live by when dealing with management rights is to never sign anything until talking with at least one of the three people above. They are part of the team for their expertise, and should not be disregarded when they offer their opinion. Hiring the right people, and doing what they say is the first, and most important step to purchasing management rights, and profiting off it.

3 Types of Investment You Should Focus On

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investmentSaving up is not enough, especially now that we’re living in a generation where inflation rates have greater impact than they had before. When you experience a windfall or you have more money than you expect to spend in the short-term, why not consider investing?

Investing, however, is a tricky business. There are many things to invest in, but you need to choose carefully to minimize risks and ensure great returns. This article lists some forms of investments that you should be focusing on. Read on to learn more.

Health Insurance

Most investors don’t exactly consider this as an investment. But, smarter and wiser ones do. If you want to go full-time in investing, you need to watch over your health. This is especially true for newbies without enough buffer in case the going gets tough.

More on Money and Financial Assets

Once you have a safety net in the form of health or life insurance, focus now on growing your money and expanding your assets. Go for ownership investments, such as stocks, bonds or mutual funds. Venturing into this field, however, require some knowledge. But, you can work with brokers if you’re just taking some baby steps. You may also consider starting a business if you think you see a gap in the market and you have enough knowledge to fill it.

Real Estate

Real estate is one of the most solid and dependable investments. But, it requires hefty funds. North Eastern Group Realty says this is because there are many things to take care of: acquisition, construction, and management. When it comes to this, you should work with reliable companies.

Before you think of investing your money, determine your appetite for risk. After that, identify your goals depending on your timeline. More importantly, do not forget to cover your debts and other liabilities once your investments start to bear fruits.