New ecommerce entrepreneurs can find them confused and confounded by the tax and accounting requirements of their venture. And thats a shame: If someones spotted a great new category and successfully built a web presence, heck, that someone shouldnt find themselves bogged down with the accounting minutia. The entrepreneur should focus on increasing traffic, expanding margins, and growing cash profits.

With that in mind, I offer up the following tax and accounting tips:

Tip #1: Dont Incorporate

A true corporationwhether a C corporation or an S corporationsaddles your business with more complicated tax accounting and a bunch of state filing requirements. You dont want to deal with this redtapeor at least not until youre profitable.

Instead, operate your business as a sole proprietorship. If youre concerned about legal liability protection, note that you can setup a one-owner limited liability company, or LLC. A one owner LLC is treated as a sole proprietorship for income tax purposes.

Tip #2: Start Your Business Before Making Investments

Expenditures you make before youre actually in business-in other words, before youve got a business license and before youre selling or trying to sell your stuffarent very deductible.

Specifically, you can probably deduct the first $5,000 of these expenses. But any amounts in excess of the $5,000 must be amortized over the next fifteen years.

What this means is that you want to start your business before you start spending money on advertising, training, web development, accountants and lawyers and so on.

Tip #3: Automate Your Bookkeeping & Accounting

By lawand some people dont know thisyoure required to maintain an accounting system that lets you clearly measure your income. As a practical matter, this means you need to use a product like Quicken or QuickBooks.

But you ought to go one better than simply using desktop accounting software. Make sure that youre taking advantage of online banking and bill payment features which integrate your accounting system with your banking. As much as is possible, for example, you want to be able to move money from PayPal to your bank to QuickBooks simply by typing a few keys or clicking your mouse a few times.

Tip #4: Hire a Payroll Service Before Hiring Employees

Many successful ecommerce business owners can run their operations without employees. And if thats true for you, hey, congratulations. If and when you do need employees, however, dont try to handle the payroll yourself. Oursource the payroll to one of the large payroll service bureaus like ADP, Payroll, or QuickBooks.

These services are expensive. Figure $1000 to $2000 per year. But the services let you avoid the bookkeeping nightmare called payroll and prevent you from getting into payroll tax trouble.

Tip #5: Consider S Corporation Status After Youre Profitable

Ive written and talked much about how S corporations save taxpayers money and how the right way to set up an S corporation is first create a limited liability company and then ask the IRS to treat the LLC as an S corporation for tax purposes.

Vaults are among the structures having the strongest doors. They are designed to protect valuables such as money, documents, jewelries and records. Vaults may differ in size according to the amount of valuables to be stored. The strongest vault doors are designed for bank vaults where huge amounts of valuables are safely kept.

Designing a door for a bank vault is difficult. It should have a maximum strength that can resist strong heat during fire and cannot easily be damaged during attempted theft or robbery. Its durability and strength is dependent mostly on its thickness and not on the type of material used. However, since bank vaults have doors made of either concrete cased with alloyed metals or purely metal, the hardest substances are chosen.

In making a vault door, most manufacturers use a regular mold to form the steel before screwing the metal clad on it. This allows the concrete to reach its ultimate strength before the actual metal cladding. However, some manufacturers pour the concrete directly on a special metal clad that altogether forms the vault door. In this way, the time of assembling will be minimized.

In other words, the most common vault doors are not pure steel or iron doors but concrete reinforced doors. Concrete is used to resist compression forces that might be applied on the door. Unlike normal concrete structures wherein the steel bars are the ones covered with concrete, vault doors are made with concrete clad with the steel. The reinforcement results in a strong and massive closing.

The most important part of a vault door is the lock system. It consists of different small sized metals held in different significant arrangements to form a strong hold along the side of the impenetrable door. Lock system can be of various types such as combination lock, high security key lock, dual control combination lock, time lock and safe-cracking lock. As long as vaults are made with iron doors, any of these lock systems can be applied.

The same principle used in making vault doors are applied in making special prison doors, submarine doors and doors of vehicles used in space. The iron doors used are strong enough to resist extreme pressure at a certain depth underwater or extreme lack of pressure within a vacuum and are perfectly tightened that even air cannot penetrate along the side.

Along with the growth in the Real Estate market, Dubai has experienced simultaneous growth in its home finance sector in the past three years. According to a recent study by EFG-Hermes the current outstanding loans stands at Dh 11.5 billion. It is estimated by the Egyptian investment bank that the UAE housing finance sector will grow by Dh 14bn in 2007, Dh 18bn in the year 2008, the growth is estimated to be Dh18bn in 2009 as well and Dh 14bn and Dh 17bn in the years 2010 and 2011 respectively. These figures have been derived based on an expected population compound annual growth rate of about three percent. The most dominant forces in the Emirates home finance market are Amlak and Tamweel. They account for over 35 and 25 percentage of the industry respectively.

The Real Estate boom of the emirate has left the world spell bound, EFG-Hermes predicts that the total growth in the Real Estate should exceed the figure of Dh419bn in the years between 2008 and 2011. It has also been said that Dh 64bn will be funded through credit. The national bank of Dubai has tied up with Dubai properties for the sole purpose of finance apartments which are bought in tower H. Tower H is a primary tower for residential purposes at Business Bay in the project of the executive Towers. This tie up of the national bank of Dubai and Dubai properties, is more than welcome, as this tie up will ensure easy financing terms for the people who are aspiring to buy apartments in tower H. These easy schemes will mean that people will be able t finance their dream homes with no obligations of interest repayment. In this case the loan is made available for 85 percent of the property price of a sum of 4 million AED, whichever is lower. This loan is provided for a period of 20 years.

Dubais Islamic bank (DIB) and Al Islami home finance are also witnessing high demands from the retail customers. They have recently launched solutions that aim to meet the requirements of retail customers. These customers include both the UAE nationals and expatriates who are keen on buying property in the UAE freehold property market. In response to this high demand of the people, DIB has announced the launch of Mobile Mortgage Advisors. They are a team of mortgage sales expert who will be providing valuable consultancy at the customers door step.

Al Islami finance has launched finance solution products such as the forward Ijarah and Ijarah. Through the Advanced Eligibility Process customers get a right to choose their finance limit without first having to choose the property. The Dubai Islamic bank caters to the needs of a diverse customer profile. Also the al Islami home finance provides up to 90 percent finance and a maximum tenure of loan repayment of 25 years depending on the eligibility of their customers.

Loan modification- the very term is the source of relief to all debt ridden people across the world. It is very true that now a day almost all the world follow the capitalistic financial set up. And in this set up, the chief mantra is to earn much and expense much. And if you once caught in the trap, one day may come that you will find yourself completely drained out. Massachusetts loan modification is such name that may come to your aid.

The matter is intricate; hence undoubtedly the matter is the experts game out and out. It is a fact that so many persons think that executing a living will is enough in this regard. But for your kind information it can be said that they are not such documents which will be statutorily recognized in the states of America and of course the doctors and other persons from the healthcare system is not obliged to follow it out and out. Massachusetts personal injury Framingham, Boston is such a name whom you can trust entirely without doubt.

Naturally having stood in the era of information technology we will think of taking resort to the ever expanding cyber world for that purpose. Nobody can say that that the decision is wrong but it is also true that you will have to keep your eyes open in this regard. You may wonder why! Massachusetts debt relief Springfield is a known name of solution undoubtedly. But the problem lies elsewhere. The online world is now almost saturated with scam companies. And you can easily imagine that taking resort to a scam company means nothing but accelerating the pace of your destruction.

Now please don’t hesitate to shed off the hesitation about bankruptcy. Exemptions based on bankruptcy laws help protect exempted properties from creditors. Properties exempted by bankruptcy laws include a residence up to $5,000, one automobile of up to $1,000, cash up to $400, a cooking range and refrigerator totaling up to $600, personal injury awards up to $5,000, death benefits up to $5,000, household goods and furniture for $1,500, jewelry up to $3,500, tools of trade up to $750, wild card and personal properties up to $400, as well as all pension and education plans. Now just think how much imaginative and helpful it is. Bankruptcy laws also allow exemptions on health aids, alimony and child support aids, property of business partnerships, ERISA-qualified benefits, retirement benefits, firefighters’ and police officers’ death benefits, group life insurance policy benefits, and seal and office registers.

This content has been taken from:

NFIB and WIA to Provide Better Protection for Wine Investors

Millions of Britons enjoy drinking it and many now see it as a long-term investment. Unfortunately, fine wine has also become a focus for fraudsters who trick investors into buying wines or vineyards that bear little resemblance to what they see in the prospectus, or may not even exist. The increasing number of such rorts in Britain has led to calls for action to be taken to protect investors and to increase consumer confidence in fine wines. In the upshot, the UKs National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) is joining forces with the newly-formed Wine Investment Association (WIA) to tackle the problem.

On 14 February 2013, the NFIB and the WIA jointly announced the launch of the new self-regulatory body which will aim to transform the growing wine investment industry by providing better protection for investors in the UK. The WIA has been formed by leading figures from the fine wine investment industry and seeks to support the sector’s growth through voluntary regulation, establishing best practices and setting up processes to identify fraudulent activity.

Director of the NFIB, Det. Supt. Dave Clark, said: “Fraudsters will always follow the money, wine investment is just the latest in a long line of investment opportunities that are being exploited and corrupted to the detriment of the industry as a whole. He added that the NFIB sees the creation of an auditable framework of self-regulation as a step towards maintaining and increasing consumer confidence, while also identifying investment companies which do not operate in accordance with the required high standards.

New Code to Tackle Wine Investment Frauds

Following an extensive consultation period, the WIA has set out the standards and procedures with which its members must comply to remain in good standing. Under the new code of conduct to be drawn up, wine investment firms will undergo stringent audits by accountancy firm Mazars. These will include checks on systems such as stock rotation and to make sure that purchase orders and invoices tally. The director of the WIA, Peter Shakeshaft, revealed that companies which successfully complete the independent audit process commissioned by the newly-formed regulatory body will bear a WIA logo offering consumers a trustworthy safety kitemark. Shakeshaft added: Our industry has been held back far too long by unscrupulous practitioners and issues around fraud. The WIA will really hold the industry to account.

Many small businesses often ignore the minor glitches which cause major problems in their small businesses. There are people or situations which we often get used to and ignore, without realizing that they may be the main cause of a crisis situation. You could be strangling your small business growth without even realizing it.

Organizational growth demands updated strategies every quarter. It does not matter whether you are self-employed, running a home-based business or an employer. Leaders have to implement organizational updates every now and then in order to enhance growth strategies and speed up the entire growth process. Some hire help, while others acquire business cash advance in order to progress and expand.

We have created a list of how you can upgrade your growth strategies and take your small business to the next level. Firstly, you should

Remove the outlived
There might be services being offered and products being produced which may not be of any value to your business. You need to make a list of such services which no longer add value to your small business growth and have outlived the market demand.

Re-organize and strategize companys strategic goals
Reevaluate whether your mission statement matches your goals or not. You will know how much work being done is irrelevant to your small business needs and market demand. Redefine your objectives in pragmatic measureable terms.

Distractions and competitions among your employees is another point which should be considered. Other issues may have distracted them from your small business goals. There may be continuous concerns hampering growth among the employees and creating problems in their professional relationship and everyday work.

Create different ways to leverage employee talents
Work efficiency can only be improved by leveraging employee talent in different areas. Set meetings with them; ask them what they want to do and how they can add value to your companys goals. Help them review their skills in order to sharpen them. There might be unproductive or negative employees, but firing them may not be the solution. Hence, move them to positions and projects where their skills can be utilized effectively.

Check the Budget Lists
In many cases you subscribe, acquire business loans, purchase and hire help which may not be required by the company anymore. And all these might be charging you a lot of cash without you even realizing it. To save your working capital, these budgetary leaks should be evaluated and diminished. Conducting a quarterly review is extremely useful, knowing where your money is going will help you fight the unnecessary charges involved and will help you improve your credit score. Check your taxes and be ready for the upcoming TAX season.

Roger Hamilton is a social entrepreneur who has started various entrepreneurial ventures across the globe and achieved great success in these ventures. Born in Hong Kong, Roger Hamilton received his education at the Trinity College, Cambridge University. Once his studies were completed, Roger started on various entrepreneurial businesses. He found success only after experiencing many failures, and today he owns and runs businesses in publishing, property, financing, franchising, event management, resort management, training, coaching, membership and education.

Roger Hamilton also created Wealth Dynamics Profiling system and he is the founded of Phi Dynamics. With a mission of creating world wide wealth where every member of the group can grow, Roger Hamilton also co-founded XL Nation and XL Group. Through these entrepreneurial activities Roger has been an active part of creating a social connection between entrepreneurs through social enterprises. The companies owned by Roger Hamilton are all a part of XL SEA Programme. By connecting wealth creation and contribution to society, Roger and his teams are working for social good to the best of their abilities.

Through the years, Roger Hamiltons Wealth Dynamic Profile Test and Wealth Spectrum Test have supported tens of thousands of entrepreneurs in over fifty countries around the world and helped them in finding their flow. Roger himself has been speaking and spreading the message of social enterprise and effective wealth creation in more than 15 countries for the past seven years. Roger Hamilton co-founded the XL Group with Dave Rogers in 2002, and it was the first international network dedicated to social entrepreneurship. Presently, XL Group hosts over 2000 events each year where social entrepreneurs can get together and share resources, knowledge and connections. XL Group has also been recognized by Clinton Global Initiative for its philanthropic contributions, and XL is also a part of the United Nations Social Compact. Find out more about Roger Hamilton and his various social entrepreneurship ventures by browsing through www.rogerjameshamilton.com.

Bank foreclosed houses are everywhere. With hundreds of homeowners defaulting on their mortgage, more and more bank foreclosures are placed on the market for sale. And almost all of them are priced below their current market value.

If you are on the market for bank foreclosures to live in or to repair and re-sell, then there are many ways to find these cheap properties. Take time to explore each option before you decide on the best way to buy bank foreclosed houses.

Short Sale:

This option to buy bank foreclosures depends heavily on the lenders, whether they will accept short sale or discounted payoffs. Short selling means that lenders have agreed for homeowners to sell their distressed properties and to accept the total sale cost as payment for the unpaid loan balance. Homeowners may opt for short sale in an effort to avoid foreclosures and to save their credit score.

If you plan on buying a bank foreclosure through short sale, make sure to talk to the lender or the person responsible for the short sale. Come prepared with your finances in order. This is a way to give you leverage during the negotiation.

Pre-foreclosure:

During the pre-foreclosure stage, the distressed homeowner is on the brink of foreclosure and has decided to sell his property to pay off his debt and avoid foreclosure. Make sure that you do some background check on the property first to know if there are hidden liens attached on it. Sometimes, in their desperation to sell the properties immediately to avoid foreclosures, the homeowners will not divulge any information that may turn off potential buyers. It is advisable also to hire a home inspector to give a professional assessment on the structural condition of the property.

Auctions:

Another way to find a cheap foreclosed house is through auctions. Here, the property goes to the highest bidder. Before you attend an auction, make sure that you have set your budget so as not to overbid on a property.

These are some common ways to find cheap bank foreclosures to buy. Your budget and requirements will dictate what method you will choose to buy bank foreclosed houses.

The BBVA Compass Bank has a slogan for their way of doing business that is -Banking Built for You-. This financial institution is located in the Sunbelt region of America. They are the 15th largest commercial bank in America as determined by deposits and the third largest in the state of Alabama.

The BBVA Compass Bank has 720 branch offices covering 7 states in the south and western portion of the United States. Every customer with BBVA has free access to their account through their online banking services. The only requirement is that the customer must sign up before they can utilize this service.

Included in this online service, customers can view the current bank rates, check on their account balances and transactions, including the CDs and IRAs. You can clearly see which of your checks have already been cleared and which ones are still outstanding.

Your monthly statement can be viewed online and you can set up numerous different alerts to help you manage your accounts better. These alerts include account balance, insufficient finds, daily balance alerts and any irregular balance changes that might occur.

There is also the online bill paying program. You not only pay your bills, but you can also sort them as you see fit. You will have a complete history of each bill that is paid and you can pay each bill by any account you have funds in. You can also assign categories for your bill paying according to your budget.

All of these online services are free for every BBVA Compass Bank customer, independent of their account balances.

We strive to bring you the latest and most accurate data possible from the home sites of the financial institutions we name. Always remember, the bigger the risk, the larger the reward or loss. Invest with caution.

With almost all financial solutions available for an individual under one roof BBVA Compass Bank has come out as one bank that is favorite by one and all. Apart from banking solutions they have upheld their duties and responsibilities towards the society in regards to environment, charity and other volunteer services.

For additional resources involving financial help, please view PNC Online Banking, best bank savings rates, Westpac Online Banking and Online Banks at

Anyone looking for a good bargain should head to Scottsboro, Alabama for First Monday, the oldest trade day in the country. Other successful trade days in the region have been patterned after Scottsboros event. The giant trade and sale day is held monthly on the weekend before the first Monday. This popular Scottsboro tradition brings many visitors to town to check out a variety of merchandise set up around the Jackson County Courthouse Square.
The next First Monday Trade Day is scheduled for Labor Day Weekend, September 1-3, 2012. This is typically the largest sale weekend of the year, bringing thousands of people into Scottsboro. Sundays are usually the busiest days of the trade weekends, but Monday holidays are also big days. The remaining First Mondays scheduled for 2012 are September 29-October 1, November 3-5, and December 1-3.

The original trade day was held in 1902 and named Horse Swappers Day. It was advertised to be a day for people to come into town to buy or swap horses and mules. The concept was not an immediate success. It took nearly two years to really catch on with local citizens. Gradually, as more people acquired cars and horse trading lost its importance, the trade day was changed to a Market Day. Area farmers could bring produce, eggs, milk, and other farm products into town to sell. Farmers were allowed free advertising in the local newspaper for each scheduled Market Day. Eventually the monthly event evolved into a weekend to sell all types of merchandise.

Todays shoppers can expect to find antiques and collectibles, furniture, artwork, clothing and accessories, crafts, jewelry, baskets, plants, dishes, household items, toys, and food. The event has a fun, festival atmosphere. Everyone is looking to discover a great find or score a bargain. Some vendors have booths set up on all three days, and others are onsite for only one or two days. Mondays are usually the lightest sale days, as many vendors have full time jobs and are unable to stay. Most vendor booths are set up from dawn to dusk. Shoppers should come early for the best selection. There is no admission charge, and plenty of parking is available downtown.

Scottsboro is located in the scenic Tennessee River valley in northeast Alabama. It is approximately 40 miles east of Huntsville and about 20 miles west of I-59. The town is adjacent to beautiful Lake Guntersville, one of the states most popular recreational lakes.

Running a lawn care and maintenance business can be difficult when you are not equipped with the right knowledge and skills. Since this business can become seasonal especially in places where there is winter, business can get very depressing. But with enough wit, the right skills and strategies, it can’t be that bad after all.

Advertising your business is a fundamental rule of the thumb. It is where you get your sales and establish your customers. There are many lawn care marketing ideas that could help entrepreneurs out there. The difference comes in choosing the right platform and using it correctly.

Identify your customers

Who will steer your business to the top? The hundreds or even millions of home owners out there who realize the importance of having a well maintained lawn but just do not have the time to accomplish lawn care tasks. It could also be entrepreneurs, just like you, who have to regularly maintain or keep their lawns to attract more customers to go their establishments.

Who will you cater to? If you choose to serve home owners, you must become aware of their needs. Gather data on what lawn care services home owners often look for, based on this establish your services, invest in the necessary equipment or tools needed.

Get your services across

How will your reach out to these customers? There are conventional marketing strategies that still work and there are the modern strategies that will help you connect to the more conventional people of today.

For instance, building a website will make it easier for people to find you. You will not rely heavily on the chances of people finding you just because they happen to walk by the street where your shop is located. Through the internet, people can find you even at the comfort of their own homes.

Maximize your marketing strategies

When you employ certain marketing strategies, you should not end there. Find ways to fully benefit from it. If you decide to build a website, make sure it has everything it needs for people to want to click on it and hire your services. Make your site “responsive” so that when a potential customer uses his smart phone to browse for services, he’ll be able to get to your site.

When you advertise via a local newspaper, make sure to ask the publisher to place your ad in the business section of the paper in case that you cater to commercial establishments or properties for lawn care services.

For more lawn care marketing ideas, visit now.

If you’re opening a small business, you need a small business bank, pure and simple. Using your regular bank won’t net you the benefits that a specialized banking account can come with. No matter who you choose as a host for your banking needs, you always need to open a new account for a business. Never use your personal bank account as this can make it next to impossible to discern your business income and expenses from more personal sources. Always choose a new account, and look for a specialized bank whenever possible. The right bank will have a deep understanding of your business needs.

One of the most important features of a small business bank is an assortment of affordable banking solutions. Money is usually tight when you’re starting out. You don’t want to have a high minimum amount on your account that you can’t possibly sustain. If you need to make a large withdrawal for business purposes, you should know that you can do so without jeopardizing your bank account. It’s also important that you’re able to make deposits and withdrawals without a lot of fees. The right business bank will work with you so that you can maximize your profits early on.

Small businesses today are far different than what they were in the past. A mom and pop shop used to be a brick and mortar store with an easily-defined address and actual location. Today, many businesses are run online. You could be running your business from locations all over the country, or all over the globe. You can’t always work with the bank down the street. You need a small business bank that will go with you everywhere you happen to be. Online banking, mobile banking, and more are essential for a business banking account. You don’t want to be tied down to one location, and with the right account you won’t be.

When you’re getting ready to open a new banking account for your business, it’s important to take the time to do your research. Look into a variety of banking opportunities to find the small business bank that’s right for you. When you look at other offers, you’re sure to notice where the best deal really lies. It’s important to understand what’s out there so you don’t get sucked into the first well-worded advertisement you see. Compare your options and look for a small business banking account that provides all the services, benefits, and convenience you need to make your company a success.

A lot of students want to get financial aid. It is quite clear why they want to get it. First of all, it is very rather satisfying to receive money that can cover your education. And to understand that they are given to you because of your outstanding abilities and knowledge.

There are a lot of ways of getting financial aid, as well as types of it. In this article we will tell you about the most popular types of financial aid. So here they are:

Scholarship. It is the most popular and widespread type of financial aid. Also it given more often and to biggest quantity of students (even for a designation of other kinds of the aid). Scholarships are paid in various forms, it can be either a sum of money or a check, or something like that The grant can be paid as periodically, as one time;
Grant. It is a onetime financial aid which is directed on the certain goal. As a rule, it provides competition to get it;
The grant for research work (Fellowship). it is the grant which implies that the students who received it must carry out some researching, trainings, etc;
Award. It is a rather small sum. It is paid one time for a winning any competition, and also for certain achievement in educational process or a social life of your alma mater.

As you can see, there are a lot of types of financial aid. Perhaps, you will try to deserve at least one of them. It is really great to be one of the students who receive financial aid. Try to be one of those who are marked with the aid. Besides, receiving financial aid because of your research work is also great, as this financial aid is paid by private funds and organizations, you can continue your research work being employed to the company which once paid financial aid for you.

Enlarge your entrepreneur focus and make visualizations an important part of your new daily routine. Entrepreneur success comes from having a vision, a clear mental picture of exactly what it is that you intend to realize. You have to be able to see it in your mind before you can achieve it. Imagine the outcome that you want, always focus on what you want and not the one you don’t want.

Visualise with perfect focus. Don’t just think and picture what you want in a unclear way, form the details, the feel, the colour. The more details you can place on it the clearer you will see it and the more real it becomes to you in your mind’s eye. It is without doubt one of the key critical success factors for entrepreneur success.

Most people if they would like success will generalize much too much. If you would like to have what is called success then you have to be very exact as to what you are calling success. How will you know when you have it? What will it feel like? What will you see and be when you have it? What is your measure for success? What do you need to do to achieve it?

When you take a photo and it is out of focus that photograph will permanently be hazy and out of focus. The same applies to your visualizations. When you visualise something and fail to put the details in it, it will at all times be a hazy idea without any clarity. Give your brain precise mental pictures of what you would like and your imagination will respond accordingly.

It is not about living in a dream world, it is making mental pictures of your desired outcomes. The bolder you make your images, giving them colour and making them real to you, then the more powerful you will feel towards them. Whatever you can think and believe you will be able to accomplish.

Condition yourself to expect your entrepreneur success. Almost all of the limitations that we place on ourselves are the effect of our self images. However we see ourselves, we live our life, so by changing your images you start the process of changing your self beliefs and your expectations.

Success is a habit, it is the result of developing an attitude. Attitudes are simply habits in the mind. Create your success habit in your mind, spend a few minutes each day and develop your mental picture. It is a critical success factor for your entrepreneur success.

Banks and credit unions seem very similar to most people. They both offer deposit accounts and various types of credit. They have many of the same services, telephone banking, online banking and ATMs; but there are some major differences between the two. If youre wondering where to turn for your next personal loan or arent sure where to open a savings account consider the following differences between a credit union and a bank.

Credit Unions

A Credit Union is a member-owned not-for-profit financial cooperative governed by a Board of Directors elected by the credit unions members. The members of a credit union usually have something in common, such as living in the same geographical region or belonging to the same organization.

Credit Unions offer everything from checking and savings accounts to small business loans, car loans, mortgages, personal loans, and more. A credit unions main focus, however, is on savings and it will usually offer higher interest on savings products than a bank. A credit unions not-for-profit status means that any income it earns is given back to its members, usually via lower interest rates and fees.

Banks

A bank is a stockholder-owned financial institution. Its main goal is to make its investors money and it does so by investing its customers money or lending it to other customers. When you make a deposit at the bank you are essentially loaning money to it. The bank pays you back in interest for that loan but the rates vary depending on the bank (consider that 0.05% youre now making on a savings account you opened several years ago when interest rates were much higher).

Banks also make their money in fees (ATM fees, overdraft fees, late payment fees, etc.). Banks carry the same products as credit unions, deposit accounts, IRAs, credit cards, and so on, but unlike a credit union, a banks products are FDIC insured. (Credit unions are insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) so funds are still guaranteed should the credit union fail).

While it may seem that banks and credit unions both offer the same products and the only difference is in who owns them, credit unions lead the way when it comes to service. Surveys of bank customers and credit union members consistently show a higher rate of satisfaction among credit union members. And while banks are often able to provide more convenience, in that they typically offer more branch locations, customer satisfaction is not as high.