Why Real Estate Investing Is Becoming More Popular Monday, Nov 15 2021 

By Jacob Maslow–Branded Content

Are you looking for a business opportunity to invest in? Real estate has become one of the most popular business ventures that you can think of. Anyone can invest in real estate as long as they know what needs to be done while in business. Investing in Myrtle Beach real estate is one of the investments less likely to fail. The following are why real estate is becoming more popular and why you should invest in it.

Money is made immediately.

If you are looking for an investment that will make you quick money, real estate is one of them. It is the wish of every person to make fast money, which is why the real estate market has bloomed over recent years. If you are keen enough to make the right sales, you can be assured of making vast amounts of money. Some new real estate agents have been making more significant amounts of money than they imagined they would have made. The investment is all about knowing the proper channels, and you can be assured of making a lot of money.

Property appreciation accrues huge amounts of money

One of the best benefits of real estate is property appreciation. The appreciation of a property will depend on its location. Therefore, it is up to the real estate agent to look for properties likely to appreciate at a high rate. Such properties will make you a considerable income and have made real estate a lucrative business.

There is a ready market.

The best part about the estate is that there is a ready market. People will always sell and buy homes, and this means it is a long-term investment. The reason some businesses do not prosper is the lack of a ready market. If a company does not have a ready market, it will have no one to sell the products to, which will not be profitable. Of course, such a business would eventually close, but this is not the case with the real estate business.

Low barriers to entry

The industry has a low entry barrier, and this has attracted many people to join the business. Whenever a company has a high entry rate, it is likely to become famous. People do not need a lot of money to invest in real estate. Various financing options can help build your investment in this industry.

The benefit of tax deductions

Real estate enables investors to enjoy certain tax benefits that people in other businesses don’t enjoy. Among such tax benefits are depreciation, property taxes, insurance, and the interest paid on mortgages.

Flexible schedules

If you invest in the real estate market, you will get to enjoy flexible schedules. This means you can make it a part-time investment as you focus on your career.

The next time you think of an investment, you should consider real estate as one of the possible investment opportunities. The investment has a higher chance of succeeding than failing, and therefore, it is worth investing in. All you have to do is research the dos and don’ts in the industry, and you can be assured of making huge profits.

 

Photo Courtesy by Jacob Maslow//Cosmic Press

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The Real Pros and Cons of Investing Friday, Nov 5 2021 

By Jacob Maslow–Branded Content

Everyone talks about how important it is to have a portfolio of investment opportunities set up for your future. However, no one ever discusses investing as a genuine opportunity, with both pros and cons to consider. Like any opportunity, investing has a lot of positives to consider, but there are negatives to be aware of too. If you’re planning on starting an investment strategy, the best thing you can do is assess the marketplace and learn more about what it takes to succeed as an investor. Knowing the truth about growing a portfolio of assets will help you make better decisions about your future. Here are the actual pros and cons of investing. 

The Benefits of Starting a Wealth Building Strategy

The most important benefit of investing in something is turning the cash you have into more money in the long term. If you invest around $5000 over ten years, you’re more likely to get a higher percentage back than if you kept the same amount of money in the bank. Today’s savings accounts don’t have the best interest rates but investing can give you real growth to look forward to. This is why so many people get started small and keep building their portfolios. 

Depending on how successful you are at reading the market and how much you can understand the changing dips and trends of trading, you might even consider looking at more fast-paced options, like day trading. This involves moving in and out of multiple positions a day, and you can review a day trading guide if you’re interested in it. However, this strategy does require a lot more work than simply spending cash on some bonds and waiting for them to mature. Ultimately, the value of money decreases over time, which means you’re losing cash the longer it sits in your bank account. However, this doesn’t mean you should never consider having any savings. 

The Downside of Investment

While there are many exciting ways to get involved in the stock market, they are not all sunshine and roses; most financial advisors will always recommend saving at least some of your cash for an investment strategy if you can manage it. However, because there’s no guarantee you’ll make a fortune from your portfolio, you’ll always be advised to do a few other things first. 

For instance, it’s essential to make sure you’re free from debt before you start spending your cash on potential wealth-building strategies. As the money you earn from your investment may not outweigh the cost of loan interest. It’s also essential to ensure you have at least some money put aside for a rainy-day fund. For instance, if something goes wrong and you lose your job, you’ll benefit from having some extra funds in your bank account – just in case. 

However, once you have a decent emergency fund, you’ve paid your bills, and you’ve still got money left over, it becomes more and more important to consider putting your money to work. With an investment strategy, you can begin to grow your cash over time, creating new opportunities as a result. The more you learn about the market, the more effective you’ll become at choosing the right options too, which can help to improve your income over time.

Image courtesy of Jacob Maslow//Cosmic Press

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Smart Money Moves After Graduation Tuesday, Sep 28 2021 

By Jacob Maslow–Branded Content

Once you have finished college, your life will change, and you will have greater responsibility and opportunity in the future. You might be beginning a new career, living on your own, or becoming independent from your parents for the first time. If you want to be successful after school, a few things will help you do so.

Take Care of Student Loans

Now is the time to take care of the debt you may have accumulated while getting your degree. Most graduates have at least some student debts after finishing school. It can be tempting to make only the minimum payments each month, but it is best to repay them as aggressively as possible. 

Once you take care of these loans, you won’t have to pay as much in interest, giving you more savings. One way you can lower your monthly expenses is by creating a plan of action for your loans. For example, you could consider an option to refinance student loans into a new loan from a private lender. You might get different repayment terms or find a lower interest rate, which can then reduce what you pay each month.

Budgeting for Living Expenses 

It is essential to understand where your cash comes from and where it goes. Then, create and stick to a budget each month to ensure you stay financially healthy for a long time. There are plenty of apps that will help you create this money-saving tool, and these can track your credit, account balances, and spending, no matter where you are.

Understand living expenses to create a realistic budget. Once you move off-campus, you will find costs can add up quickly. Whether it is rent, utilities, or transportation, you will be facing a lot more costs now. And these can add up quickly, making you wonder where your income is going. When setting up the budget, ensure you consider each expense and know they can change throughout the year. For example, if you live in a region with frigid winters, your electric bill might be higher then.

Start Retirement Planning

It might seem crazy to think about your retirement when you have barely entered the workforce, but now is the best time to begin saving. Many times, you can earn interest on the money in your account, as well as the money you have already invested. But, of course, that means you need to have time on your side to have the best results.

It’s not that hard to save for retirement since the most complex part will be making sure there is enough room in your budget for it. First, create automation so some of your paychecks go directly toward the account. Second, if you receive a 401(k) match from an employer, try to take full advantage of that offer since it is free money. Think of it as part of the wages you earn from the work you provide to the company. Finally, promise yourself that you won’t touch your retirement savings, no matter what.

Photo Courtesy of Jacob Maslow // Cosmic Press

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How to screen stocks Sunday, Mar 14 2021 

By Jacob Maslow — Branded Content

The science of stock screening has been around for more than a century, even since there were large, centralized exchanges where people could buy and sell corporate ownership shares. Indeed, some of the most effective screening methods are as old as the hills, but they are ever-popular because they give investors peace of mind. None of the methods listed below guarantees that you’ll screen out faulty, weak companies and screen in the best ones.

However, logic can be the best guide when you examine the reasoning behind each of the techniques. For millions of active traders and investors, it’s helpful to combine several of the strategies. Here’s the general philosophy behind each of the four major screening systems.

PE Ratio

P/E ratio, or price-per-earnings ratio, as a way of identifying financially strong companies is one of the simplest and most favored selection tools. There are two steps to calculating the number. First, find earnings-per-share by dividing the company’s earnings by the number of outstanding shares. Then, divide the share price (P) by the earnings-per-share (E). If the number is below 15, it’s said that the stock is a good buy. P/E ratios above 15 indicate an issue that is too expensive and thus does not represent a wise investment.

Penny Stocks

The most accessible screening tool of all asks a question: “is the share priced below $5?” If the answer is yes, then it’s classified as a penny stock and comes with all sorts of unique features, some positive and some negative. However, some traders only deal in this segment, while others avoid it. So many active investors opt of penny-shares because you don’t need a ton of capital to get started.

Here’s an example of using two tools at the same time. Look at a list of companies you’re thinking about investing in. Assume there are 250 corporate names on the roster. First, you might decide to eliminate all the non-penny offerings, and end up with (again, just as an example) 50 company names remaining. Next, you’d eliminate all the ones whose P/E ratio is above 15. Perhaps that would leave you with ten or so candidates, from which you could further screen or opt to purchase all of them.

News

The internet makes a news-search easy. Find all recent news stories on any corporation you have on your might buy list. Look for negative and positive news from within the past six months or an entire year. There are no hard-and-fast rules with this technique, but once you’re finished reading, you’ll have an excellent feel for how the organization is doing in terms of overall performance, profits, and prospects.

The Trend

Charts come in handy for research, and you’ll need them to find the price trend of the shares that interest you. This screen involves eliminating any company that is not in a current up-trend, defined by the 50-day moving average above the 200-day moving average. This simple method is often used as an initial screen by long-term investors.

Photo Courtesy of Jacob Maslow // Cosmic Press

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A&S freezes spending amid $1.6 million budget shortfall Sunday, Mar 14 2021 

By Eli Hughes–

Interim Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences David Owen announced to A&S faculty on March 9 that a temporary spending freeze would take effect from now until June 30. This decision comes after A&S reported a budget shortfall of more than $1.6 million for the current fiscal year due to low enrollment this year.

“Enrollments in A&S fell below budgeted targets in the fall and spring semesters, and we are now projecting a revenue shortfall in the current fiscal year of $1,684,991, while expenditures are trending as budgeted,” Owen said in the email announcement. “I ask for your help to close this gap between revenues and expenditures.”

He went on to say that this shortfall can be addressed by increasing revenues through higher enrollment in late-start spring semester classes and summer classes, as well as by reducing expenditures through general funds spending freeze.

When The Cardinal reached out to Owen for comment he said this spending freeze will only affect non-essential expenditures.

“The spending freeze will not affect students or impact our academic mission. Its purpose is to reduce spending on expenses that are not immediately essential to our academic and research missions and that can be held off until next year,” Owen said.

Owen also said that the spending freeze was only one piece of the plan to address the budget shortfall, “We are striving to increase enrollments by offering more late-start spring courses than in the past and offering a wide-range of summer courses. We had previously set aside a portion of the budget for possible revenue shortfalls, and those funds will be used. Lastly, we will apply some of the funds carried over from last year to close this budget deficit.”

The underlying cause of this decrease in enrollment that led to the shortfall is not certain at this time but Owen attributes many of the problems to the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The budget shortfall is due to lower than expected enrollments in A&S, which I expect has multiple causes. Part of this is due to some students choosing to step away from their studies because of the many additional financial, personal, and emotional stresses created by the pandemic, and some may be because some students prefer in-person learning,” Owen said.

In the email, Owen laid out specific guidelines for what expenses the spending freeze would affect:

  • This applies only to general fund accounts.
  • Recurring expenses, expenses already incurred and all invoices received will need to be paid.
  • Does not impact current faculty tenure-line or term searches. Requests for staff hires will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
  • This will not affect any spending from research grants, RIF accounts and start-up funds.
  • This will not affect spending from endowments and current use gift accounts.
  • For all other general fund expenses, you should work with your UBM-I to request pre-approval.

Owen believes that this spending freeze can help the department address the financial problems it’s facing while still maintaining its academic mission.

“A&S faculty have worked tirelessly to provide the best possible online learning experiences possible during this past year,” Owen said. “Arts & Sciences degrees provide an exceptional value in the 21st century. By learning how to learn, A&S graduates are well-prepared for highly dynamic and unpredictable career paths, and A&S graduates have the knowledge and skills to tackle many of the challenges our communities face.”

Graphic by Joseph Garcia // The Louisville Cardinal

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Board of Trustees votes to increase contributions to employee retirement accounts Tuesday, Jan 26 2021 

By Madelin Shelton — 

The University of Louisville will be increasing the university’s contribution to employee retirement accounts to six percent of the employee’s salary effective Feb. 1 through June 30.

“The additional optional university contribution of 2.5 percent that matches voluntary employee contributions will also continue through this period,” U of L President Neeli Bendapudi said in an email.

This increase comes as the university had to implement several budget saving steps last spring in response to the financial fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. One of these steps included eliminating the university’s contributions to individual retirement accounts. 2.5 percent of employer contributions were restored in August 2020, along with the full restoration of the 2.5 percent match for voluntary employee contributions, after the university found it financially feasible.

“This recent increase to 6 percent is possible because of savings incurred through sound and responsible financial planning and management, which included not only the retirement reduction but also a campus-wide program that reserved 5 percent of unit General Fund budgets to fund possible reductions in revenues,” Bendapudi said. A portion of the reserved General Fund budgets will now go directly to units with the discretion of vice presidents and deans.

The university will have to reevaluate the university retirement plan contributions in Summer 2021, but hopes to maintain the current level of contribution.

“We value you, our faculty and staff, and the important work you have continued to perform so well under less than ideal circumstances. We thank you for your efforts and promise to do our best to reward you for your dedication to the University of Louisville,” Bendapudi said.

File Graphic // The Louisville Cardinal

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Love ain’t cheap: Dating on a dime Thursday, Sep 12 2019 

By Zoe Watkins —

Tonight’s the night. It’s your first date with the “love of your life” who you will (maybe) cherish forever. So, it is only suitable for you to make everything perfect and not leave out any detail.

The thing is, everything costs money and date nights can quickly add up to a hefty check, and let’s face it, college students are notoriously known for being broke. So, yeah, dating can be rough. Good news though, here’s some quick ways to plan out your next date night that won’t cost you an arm and leg.

To start off the night, there’s plenty of spots around Louisville to go to that are easily accessible, including some on campus. The fountain next to Schneider Hall provides an enchanting ambience with its tall trees and overgrown shrubs, and the fountain centerpiece radiates peaceful moods. Though if you want to go exploring, downtown 4th Street has a lively, electric atmosphere on Saturday nights. You could also try visiting the Waterfront Park, Old Louisville or the Highlands for a lovely evening.

Why not grab some dinner before heading out again? Some good restaurants can be found in Cardtowne. Try a simple classic like Home Run Burgers or maybe a late night coffee run at Quills. Not in a coffee mood? Try some dessert at Comfy Cow, which stays open until 11 p.m. Fun fact, both Home Run Burgers and Comfy Cow use Cardinal Cash.

Some other restaurants, though a bit farther, include happy hour at Dragon King’s Daughter on Bardstown Road and Please & Thank You in East Market. Happy hour at Dragon King’s Daughter  and Please & Thank You are both less than 10 dollars. If you’re in a rush, Sonic Drive-In is a fun choice and most of the menu choices are less than six dollars.

Now onto the main event, what you two lovebirds want to do for the rest of your evening. The Floyd Theatre, Speed Museum and Rauch Planetarium are all free to students who have their ID and are classic date ideas for couples.

If you do want to hit the town, some things to do is take a walk on the Big Four Bridge, go bowling at Executive Strike and Spare or go see a band at Headliners Music Hall.

Though it doesn’t always have to be this planned out, date nights can be as simple as hanging out in a dorm’s lobby, cooking dinner at home or a night in watching bad Netflix movies. Whatever happens though, be sure its lets sparks fly and is something memorable because that is priceless.

Graphic by Shayla Kerr / The Louisville Cardinal

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U of L resources help keep the green in student’s wallet Wednesday, Sep 11 2019 

By Madelynn Bland —
The University of Louisville is quickly turning into one of the greenest campuses in the country and actually has many ways for students to make easy changes to be more sustainable and save money. One of the most notable ways are the water filling stations seen all around campus. By filling up one reusable bottle at these stations instead of buying disposable plastic bottles, students can save hundreds of dollars a year.
“Bottled water is for suckers. Bring your reusable bottle and refill for free with Louisville’s award-winning tap water. At just one water filling station on the first floor of the SRC, students recently pushed us past one million bottles saved,” Justin Mog, Assistant to the Provost for Sustainability Initiatives, said.
One million bottles saved means a million bottles less that end up in the ocean and a million bottles that students didn’t have to pay for.
The Belknap Campus also has an organization called the Cardinal Cupboard, which is stocked with food that would otherwise go to waste. Food donations include Starbucks’ bakery items, Einsteins’ bagels, canned food and many other grocery’s brought in from the community. Every trip is completely free for students and faculty, so this is a great way to get groceries at no cost and keep food from being completely wasted. Cardinal Cupboard is located in the SAC, room W314 and is open from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. on weekdays.
David Simpson, a sustainability professor, said, “In terms of how students can live sustainably, it’s all about being mindful of the consumer patterns that we all have and grew up with. In the everyday decisions we make there’s opportunities to say ‘Do I really need this?’ and try to figure out if there’s another way to solve this need.” Simpson also suggested checking out the Free Store on campus, which offers access to free clothing, household appliances and school supplies. It’s open to all students, faculty and staff.
By getting things from this store instead of going out and purchasing new items, students are reusing what would have just been wasted and saving their precious money. Students taking full advantage of all these cost saving, sustainable resources are not only saving their money, but are also being eco-conscious.

Graphic by Shayla Kerr / The Louisville Cardinal

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Where does the money go?: Using budget apps to track spending Sunday, Sep 8 2019 

By Jordan Geisler —

More likely than not, at some point in your academic career you’ll experience what it’s like to be a broke college student. Think of it like a coming-of-age ritual. Fortunately, being millennials, we have technology on our side, which means we have the power of budgeting apps right at our fingertips.

A great way to handle your finances, budgeting apps offer helpful insight to your spending trends, keep track of your purchases and even a little more. EveryDollar follows steps from financial expert Dave Ramsey and apps like NerdWallet track your credit score.

Audrey Kline, a microeconomics professor in the School of Business, said that even though she doesn’t personally use a budgeting app, she recommends college students using one.

“Having a road map and a budget app, or some other way that you budget, to just look at your expenses versus your income can help with eliminating one thing at a time,” said Kline.

Sophomore finance major Tom Murphy agrees with Kline. He recommends apps like Acorns and Robin Hood, which allow you to invest spare change into stocks. “Having some sort of money put away from investments is gonna be very helpful when you graduate,” Murphy said.

However, while it’s nice having an app track spending habits, some feel weird about apps tracking their every move.

Senior communication major Cameron Wilson said she uses Mint, a budgeting app linked to her bank account that categorizes and tracks her spending.

“It’s kind of weird that it knows everything that you’re doing, but it really does help when you’re trying to budget for school,” said Wilson.

However, the overall consensus from professors and students alike for utilizing a budgeting app resembles that of something like floss: they themselves don’t use it, but they believe it’s a good practice and recommend others to use it.

Even still, they all agree on the importance of putting money away, with or without the use of a budgeting app.

Kline said, “Even if it’s a little, just get in the habit of routinely putting away money from every paycheck, even if it’s five dollars, just to establish the discipline and the habit of saving.”

Graphic by Shayla Kerr / The Louisville Cardinal

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