Category Archives: Business

Business Idea: Renting Space for a Percentage of Profits

I see more and more little stores having to move locations due to high rent fees. I hear stories about a local mall that raises the rent during Christmas time, which coincides with the time of year when stores are finally making their profit for the year. And apparently, the raise is too high making it difficult for the stores to survive.

I have been reading articles such as how communities are working together to promote business and better lives for the folks that live in the community. For instance: How Seattle Made Dark Alleys Safer and how one company is helping its workers own homes in just a few years. These are examples of thinking outside of the box and coming up with awesome solutions.

What if business property owners charged a percentage of your profits instead of a set rate? So, when you are just starting out, your rent is low – say $100 a month. There should be some kind of minimum based on the area. Then, once a percentage of what you make exceeds the base rent, you would add that on to what you pay.

For instance, say the base rent is $100 a month and you agree to pay the $100 a month or 10% of your profits, whichever is greater. By month 3, you are making $2000 a month in profit. Now you are paying $200  a month.  In month 4, you make $5000 in profit, then you would pay $500.  Say that month 6 is slow and you only make $3000, then you would only pay $300.  It seems to me that in the long run, this would be a good business model for property owners and store owners.

It would give store owners a varying amount of capital to increase their business with based on how well their business is doing. This would help prevent businesses that are successful overall to fold due to a few bad months. It would also benefit property owners as it would make the sky the limit. Your profit will rise as the profits of the store increases. And it would make property owners more responsive to the needs of their store. If a store owner says…hey, our profits would be better if you improved the lighting in the store – the property owner then becomes a bit more invested as the store owner’s profits directly affect him.

Probably never happen…just a thought I had.

Katlissa’s Kreations Launch!

Katrina and I have been working on a new business idea! We have put our names and talents together and are making greeting cards. We would love it if you would ‘like’ us on Facebook!!!!
We would extra love it if you wanted to buy some cards! I accept paypal (also checks and cash if you are local). 12 cards and envelopes for $10.

Career Change

I have been thinking a lot lately about what type of work I would like to do. I would like to help DH support our family financially. But what to do. DH thinks I should work more on my HTML skills and get work helping people design their websites. While I can muddle through HTML, I am not sure it is the best use of my talents. And while I can write and figure out the code, I am very weak in the ‘designing area’. I mean, having someone come to me and say, build me a website, I just feel a bit overwhelmed by such a prospect considering how much I struggled to get my webstie working (and there are still things I would like to change).
A job I have recently thought of. The last couple of days I have been trying to help my sister-in-law do some trouble shooting with her computer. I needed some advice from DH, but I think with a class or two in this, I could do a good job of it and this type of work suits my personality more. I love a good puzzle and that’s what this would be. Someone’s computer not working? Well, I could figure out the pieces and get it working again. And I like working with computers and with people. I have been working with computers for 18 years, so I have experience. I could get certification, then start up my own business and work according to my hours, so I would still be able to homeschool, then work in the afternoons and evenings. This has a lot of appeal to me.
I have friends who have tried the positions of day trader or futures broker. While I am sure these are good positions for some, I am clueless in that arena and will leave that work to the people who know what the heck they are doing (or at least they do a good job of pretending that they know what they are doing).
Other things that interest me are library work, book store work, office manager work, writing (anything to do with writing), and people oriented activities. I am organized, great at multi-tasking, a quick learner and reasonably good with entertaining and teaching children. I am still thinking on this. My main criteria is that it is something that I can work around homeschooling.
So, what kinds of jobs do you and/or your homeschooling friends do?

Searching For Proper Business Real Estate?

This can be a bit of a tricky thing to do. A couple of years ago, there was a business opportunity that we thought might be opening up while we currently have an single wide trailer that we have converted into an office, it is small and not really able to hold more than a couple of people. With the opportunity rearing on the horizon, we knew we must find some commercial real estate to lease.
We are in a unique situation: geographically we are between two medium size cities and between two small towns It was hard deciding whether to go for the conveniences offered by the larger cities (airports, more hotels, and more options for offices) or for one of the smaller towns which had more of a ‘hometown’ appeal We were going to be brining in some fellow computer consultants and contractors from around the country, so in the end we decided on going with one of the larger towns
Unfortunately the business opportunity ended up passing us by. But who knows what will lie in our future?

My Year as an Office Manager

When I worked for the College of William and Mary as Parking Services Office Manager, I had a small staff under me. Actually, the hiearchy was a bit murky. My boss, Theo had an administrative type assistant. Then there were four people who went out and about and ticketed cars. They mostly reported to Theo, but worked closely with me. Then there was another gal, who ran dispatch for them and was technically under my supervision. Then I had a few college students working for me. I got to interview them, hire them and unfortunately I once had to fire one girl. She was just too busy with other things going on and was often late and unreliable. I hated doing it, but that is part of a job as a manager…to make sure that all the parts in the office are working together and performance management.
When there were tiffs and misunderstandings, I had to step in and try to solve them. I loved my job there, and it really gave me an opportunity to put my organizational skills to use. I also helped them implement several new programs which appealed to my creative side. Being the person in charge of deciding how others were doing their job was probably my least favorite part. As my husband is always telling me, I am just a big marshmallow! I preferred to work on what I was capable of doing, not sit around and pointing out where others were messing up…except for that one gal…she really was just not right for the job.

Save Money By Improving Your Credit Score

One of the Christmas movies I enjoy watching is An American Christmas Carol. The Scrooge person is played by Henry Winkler (remember The Fonz?). He doesn’t seem like a likely Scrooge does he? In this American Christmas Carol, we find ourselves in America in the late 1800s and Scrooge discovers credit. He takes this newly developing business that banks and companies have come up with where you let people buy items on credit and charge them interest. And if they don’t make their payments, the lender gets to take the item! He makes the comment that “It is not unheard of to get 150% of the original price or more”.
Now, I am not sure who first invented the idea of credit, particularly where interest and repossession are involved. There is mention of loans in the bible, but there is also the fact that every seven years, debts were to be forgiven (and my guess is that is where the 7 years comes from regarding how long a bankruptcy can be listed on your credit report). Fortunately, we are past the point where we get thrown into debtor’s prison. Can you imagine…you are in debt so they throw you in prison (where you can’t make a living) and there you stay until your debt is paid. How many of us would be in jail now if this was still the practice?
We have become a nation of people that live on credit. We use credit in emergencies and we use credit to finance our latest want list. There are people who never run into credit problems. They always pay on time, they never spend more than they can repay, and they don’t run into situations where their credit starts ruling their lives. In my early credit life, I only used a credit card to build up my credit. I paid the balance each month and was on top of things.

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Is A College Education The Way to A Successful Future?

Yesterday, I visited Barbara Frank’s blog and found a very interesting article there on the Gloomy Stats about Colleges and Jobs. Before you read my piece further, I encourage you to read what she has to say. She has some great stats and comments that will make a jumping off place for this post. Go ahead, click. A new window will open up and then you can come back here when you are done. Don’t worry, I’ll wait.
There, are you back now? Are you depressed now? Have you had in the back of your mind that college is the way for your children to achieve the American dream? Don’t be depressed, you have just gained a great advantage, you have been told that there are other options. That you don’t have to spend the family fortune or push your children deep into debt for a degree that may not be anything more than a lovely piece of paper for the living room wall and experience in the latest drinking games.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I went to College. The College of William and Mary to be exact. I was the first person on my father’s side of the family to attend college and graduate with a four year degree. I had known my whole childhood that I would be going to college. I am an only child and my parents worked hard to put me through college. I worked in college but it was for extra money and when I left college, we owed about $10,000 (which was 1/2 the cost of my stay in college). I treasure the time I spent at William and Mary. I learned a lot about life there, was able to learn independence within a protected setting and I have a really great degree in Latin to hang on my wall.

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Huh? What Did You Say?

Let me set the scene…I was deep into a mystery book (The Death of the Six Foot Teddy Bear) which I will be sharing information with you about later this week. And my husband said something…Here is what I heard…
“Huh? What are you talking about? We don’t have 6 cats! We only have 4!” I grumble back, trying to keep my miind focused on my book.
He replied, “I didn’t say anything about how many cats we have. I asked if you know where I put that CAT6 cable?”
“What? What are you talking about?” I ask, the magical connection with my mystery story broken.
“It is a computer cable, I need to find it. Do you know where it is?” He asks patiently.
My eyes glazed over… “Nope, no clue.” I returned to my mystery book. But in the back of my mind, the term bugged me, so I checked out Wikipedia to see what I can learn.
According to Wikipedia: Category 6 cable, commonly referred to as Cat 6, is a cable standard for Gigabit Ethernet and other network protocols that is backward compatible with the Category 5/5e and Category 3 cable standards. Cat-6 features more stringent specifications for crosstalk and system noise. The cable standard provides performance of up to 250 MHz and is suitable for 10BASE-T / 100BASE-TX and 1000BASE-T (Gigabit Ethernet). It is expected to suit the 10GBASE-T (10Gigabit Ethernet) standard, although with limitations on length if unshielded Cat 6 cable is used.
Yeah…okay…now I get it…uh huh, sure do. Do your eyes glaze over when you are confronted with modern day technical terminology?
Oh well…where did I put that mystery book, anyway?