Celebrating and Supporting Locally Owned Businesses on “Small Business Saturday” and Every Day of the Year
In 2010, in an effort to encourage Americans to support local businesses within their communities, American Express dubbed the first Saturday after Thanksgiving “Small Business Saturday.” Holiday shoppers who flock to the malls looking for deals on Black Friday are asked to save a little of their budgets to spend with small, local businesses on Saturday as well. The “Small Business Saturday” movement quickly became popular with the public garnering more than 1.2 million “likes” on American Express’s Facebook page in just one month. By 2011, the U.S. Senate made Small Business Saturday official, and by 2012, shoppers spent an estimated $5.5 billion dollars with small businesses located right in their neighborhoods. Attorney Sultana Haque-Bolet grew up the child of entrepreneurial parents, is now a small business owner herself, and knows first-hand what it means to own and operate a small business. She understands what it means to be
November Update: Fannie Mae Implements Strict New Lending Rules, Higher Down Payments, Shorter Terms
By November 16th, Fannie Mae will be tightening up its lending guidelines. At that time, changes to Fannie Mae’s Desktop Underwriter program will go into effect, forcing lenders of these government-backed loans to adhere to strict standards, with no room for creative financing. For potential homebuyers, this could be good news or bad news, depending on your perspective. Bad News: Higher down payments. The current down payment for Fannie Mae conforming loans is three percent. After November 16th, down payments will increase to five percent. Good News: No upfront mortgage insurance costs. Loans with a five percent down payment typically do not require mortgage insurance, like FHA loans and loans with only a three percent down payment do, so if you are able to put down five percent, you’ll save money on this added expense. Bad News: Reduced term limits. Loan limits have been reduced so no mortgage can have
Thinking of Opening a Business? Read This First!
With the economy being what it is these days, and the scarcity of jobs, more and more people are choosing to start their own businesses. Whether you are starting your own business out of necessity or to fulfill a lifelong dream, we applaud you! Entrepreneurship can be an exciting journey. It is important, though, to think through all aspects of starting and owning a business before making the leap. Each decision you make could have long-term legal and financial ramifications, and impact the success of your business. Here are some considerations: Competition. What type of company do you plan to start, and are others in your area already offering the same products or services you plan to offer? Taking the time to research your market and your competition will help you determine whether the market is large enough for everyone, and the odds of your success. Ignore your