How Can Somebody Check the Status of Their Application?

Filing for a new Tax ID with IRS EIN Tax ID Filing Service tends to be an efficient way to get your new EIN, but efficient doesn’t mean instantaneous. When the IRS has a slower processing cycle and you want to make sure you keep up on the status of your application, waiting for the service’s automatic email communication is not always good enough. That’s why the service also provides an easy to use tracking page that will provide you with updates about the status of your application.

How to Check Your EIN Status

If you have already submitted an application with payment, it’s easy to check EIN status updates online:

  • Navigate to the tracking page on IRS-EIN-Tax-ID.com
  • Enter the email address used to file for the tax ID
  • Follow the directions on each additional step for verification
  • The filing service will provide you with an update for your EIN application

Don’t forget, if the application is either accepted or rejected, you will get an email. In the event of a Reference 101 error, the email will come with instructions about how to fix the problems with your filing, as well as a refund of all but a $10 processing fee. Acceptance emails are also issued to you in a timely manner, which allows you to use the tracking page to verify EIN number messages you receive via email.

Can People Also Look Up Registered Tax ID Numbers?

Yes, but only for certain publicly traded companies and nonprofits. In most cases, an EIN is confidential information that is not published. It is intended for internal use within companies and for tracking the proper payment of taxes, and as such, it is difficult to look up existing EIN registrations unless you are the registrant.

If you did register EIN numbers for entities and you need to look them up again, or if you want more information about tracking your applications, contact IRS EIN Tax ID Filing Service today.

How to be Chill at Couponing

We’ve all heard the stories about people who make a profession out of saving with coupons. These people spend hours every day searching for coupons, keep them in files, trade them, travel extreme distances to use them and then brag about their couponing.

If you’re going to quit your day job to coupon-collect, you can look forward to a life of searching and scrounging.  But if you want to find and use coupons in a more leisurely fashion, you can join the ranks of the majority of coupon-savers who keep their budgets in balance with some savvy couponing strategies.

Coupons

Coupons are, basically, vouchers that give you a discount when you purchase a product or service. Many people remember how their mother would sit in the kitchen on a Sunday morning, clipping printed coupons from the newspapers. The small slips of paper were then presented at a supermarket or other store and the amount of the discount was subtracted from the purchase’s total.

Today, the majority of coupons can be found online. The coupon usually comes in the form of a coded combination of numbers and letters. The person holding this code presents the coupon before making the payment and the coupon code is entered with the purchase price which subtracts the discount from the item’s total cost.

Businesses also send coupons digitally to mobile users’ cell phone via text message or download. The app sends the coupon code to the phone and then the coupon barcode is scanned directly into the cash register from a phone or is inputted into the cash register by the cashier.

Print coupons are still in use, though their popularity has declined in recent decades. You don’t have to limit yourself to one specific type of coupon — be prepared to mix and match the different types of coupons for the opportunity to maximize your money-saving activities

How to Coupon Effectively

There are two important pieces of basic advice for people who are going to spend their time couponing.

  1. Organize yourself — why would you spend hours upon hours collecting coupons if you’re not going to be able to find the relevant coupons when you need them? Create files, either digital files if you’re storing your coupons digitally or print files if you’re using print coupons. Keep your files in folders
  •  type of coupons (food, household goods, garden goods, clothing, etc)
  •  Name of store

Your file folder may look something like this:

  • Food
    Supermart
    FreshMart
    QualityMart
  • Clothing
    FashionPalace
    PrettyPlace
    GuyShop
  • House
    CityShop
    BigBuy
    TopBrand
  1.  Buy what you need — one of the biggest mistakes of coupon collectors involves rationalization behaviors — a couponer might figure “I’ve saved $$$$ here, so I’m going to splurge there.”  It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that if you spend the money that you’ve saved, you won’t have saved anything! Don’t buy anything with the coupons that you wouldn’t otherwise buy – if you don’t eat sardines, don’t buy them, no matter how big the coupon discount is for.  And then….plan out how you’re going to save your savings. Hopefully in a savings account or other smart plan.

Find the Coupons

Now that you’ve got the basics, you’re ready to get started. Here are some great tips for finding coupons that will help you coupon effectively, efficiently and without becoming obsessive.

Make a list of the brands and products that you buy regularly. Now, conduct a search for those products and brands to find as many of those items as possible. Some possible sources for your search include:

  • Internet — you can do a general search on the Internet to locate the items that you want to buy. Type in your search keywords — “discount on men’s pullovers,” “discount on online casino games”,”refrigerator sales” — and see what comes up. If you are prepared to buy online, you won’t need to include a location but if you want to find a brick-and-mortar store you’ll need to include your location into your search terms.
  • Newspapers — newspapers are still a great source of coupons for many different brands and products. Some businesses have monthly specials while others put the coupons in randomly.  The Sunday newspaper is the best source of printed coupon and if you find good coupons in a specific week’s newspaper, consider buying a second paper so that you can double up and stock up on the discounted item. You might even be able to find the newspapers themselves at a discount! (If the store has a loyalty card you might be able to load coupons onto your card so you don’t have to walk around with these slips of paper). Smart Source, P&G Everyday and RedPlum are three sites that will help you complete this upload).
  • Grocery and Drugstore Websites offer coupons so you can download the coupons directly to your store card.  These coupons include both store-specific and manufacturer coupons. includes both manufacturer, as well as store-specific, coupons.  Check for new coupons before you leave your house to go shopping and organize them ahead of time so that you won’t be pressured to find the coupon once you’re in the check-out line.  Then you just present your store card at checkout to redeem those coupons.
  • Mobile Apps such as Checkout51 and iBotta make it easy for you to get cash back on your purchases. You can pair up a printed coupon with your app coupon to double your discount.
  • In-Store coupons are often displayed on products, on the back of your receipt and on store shelves. Some in-store coupons can be printed out at the register. Check the product’s package for a rebate offer if you see a “Try Me Free” sticker on any product,. Cosmetics and personal hygiene products frequently display these types of promotions.
  • Junk mail is often a source of useful coupons. Scan the junk mail flyers before you throw them out.
  • Magazines often carry manufacturers’ coupons. These magazines, specifically women’s publications, may even show you an index of the coupons that are featured in each issue. You can review what each magazine offers while you’re standing in the check-outline.

Couponing is a great way to see how you can meet the challenge of saving money in the 21st century. Use the couponing tips and enjoy your savings in a relaxed atmosphere of smart shopping.

Need A Career Change? Here’s A Step-By-Step Guide

If you’re thinking of taking a big leap to change your career, there are many things to consider.  People change their careers for a variety of reasons. Here are some of the reasons:

  1. Your career goals may have changed.
  2. The career values that you are holding on to may have changed.
  3. You have discovered a new interest that you like to integrate into your job.
  4. You have learned a new skill that you think may be lucrative.
  5. You would like to earn more money.
  6. Your enthusiasm about your job is dwindling because you no longer believe in your company’s mission and vision.

Without a doubt, embarking on a new career is an important decision.  This is an important transition that requires a lot of thought and planning. It is more realistic to reinvent your career gradually and make small changes over time. The bottom line is that you should be able to choose a career that will bring you satisfaction and fulfill your passion.

Here is a step-by-step guide that will help you have a successful career change:

1. Step back and take a good look at yourself

If you are planning a career change, the first step is to know yourself more deeply. You need to list your values, priorities, non-negotiables, preferences, and your goals in life. In doing this, you might want to take stock of your past successes, identify your preferred activities, and list down your best skills. You need to be able to identify whether your goals, skills, and values align with your current career.  In order to help you, there are available tools to assist you in determining your career aptitude.

Looking at yourself with a different lens is important because looking at your life from an altered perspective will help you rediscover yourself and give insight on what you want most in your career.  However, self-reflection is merely the first step. While the process of knowing your values and strengths is important, these discoveries are useless without sufficient follow-through.

2. Assess your current career.

The next step in assessing your career is to have a closer look at your job satisfaction, evaluating your reactions to various situations in your current job. Keeping a journal or a digital log of what you like or dislike most about your job will be helpful in analyzing the root cause of your desire to change.

Assess what you like or dislike about your job

3. Consider alternative careers by listing down your options.

You can research career options by initially conducting a preliminary investigation of several fields.  There are many online lists of job titles and descriptions. Find a list of careers that center around your strengths and passions.

Make a big list of options first, then rank these options based on personal fit, conditions for personal job satisfaction, and other long-term key factors.  Based on the results of the ranking, create a shortlist.

From the shortlist, consider doing the following steps:

  1. Shadow professionals in your chosen field and observe their work first-hand
  2. Choose options that will let you try it out
  3. Try the career option on the side

Whether it is freelance work, consulting, or doing a short project, it is a worthy endeavor to practice your skills on the side. This is a good idea in order for you to find out whether you are fit for this new career.

Here is a perfect example:

My friend Mr. X, a marketing executive, is considering changing his career. He is not happy with his job and considers it very unfulfilling.  After doing self-reflection, evaluating his current career and considering alternatives, he has discovered that he has a natural talent, growing skills and a passion for playing online poker. Through research and networking, he found out that playing poker is a lucrative career alternative. He is very excited at the prospect of having a full-time career playing poker online.

Playing poker is a lucrative career alternative

However, before delving into online poker head-on as a full-time career, Mr. X is currently trying it out, playing an online poker game of Texas Holdem or Omaha High at 888poker in his spare time. He is pretty sure that he will eventually take a leap from amateur to professional in the future, but he is currently learning the ropes by practicing his skills in his spare time. Gaining experience in a new career through part-time or volunteer work is essential before taking the plunge and going full-time.

4. Network with people in your chosen sector.

After you have narrowed down the field and have chosen one or two careers, spread your net wide and network in your chosen sector. Going back to Mr. X the poker player, once he made the decision to pursue poker as an alternative career, he began to reach out to personal contacts in the field. Networking is important so that you could get information about the field that you’re interested in. People in your network may also give you job leads and offer you valuable advice. It is also a good idea to join professional organizations in your new field.

5. Take a short course and hone your skills.

It may be necessary to bridge your current skills with the skills that your new chosen field requires.  While there are a number of transferable skills from your current career that you can leverage on such as communications, mentoring, management, planning, and leadership, it is also necessary to learn new knowledge and skills in your new career.  In learning new skills, you can take a short course, earn a degree, or do an internship. There are some jobs that would require certification, and if you need this in your new chosen career, you would have to take time to get the accreditation that you need.

6. Look for a mentor

Everyone agrees that a career change is a major life decision.  One of the things that could help ease the transition is to look for a career mentor, a person who is part of your target field, who ideally has an influential position, who could guide you through the process.  This mentor will be able to help you by walking you through the ins and outs of the industry that you are about to join, holding your hand through the rough patches, and using his or her influence to give you industry opportunities.

7. Leave your job

There will come a time when you know that you are ready to leave your current job and start your new career. If it has been a while since you have used job-hunting tools, make sure that you are updated when it comes to writing resumes and cover letters. You should also brush up on interviewing and salary negotiation. Make sure that you give adequate notice to your current company.  Your employment contract states how much notice you should give, and you need to abide by it.

This detailed step-by-step plan to changing your career includes the usual advice of assessing your current career to more out-of-the-box recommendations such as pursuing a job where your passion lies, such as playing online poker.

No matter where it takes you, it takes real courage to admit to yourself and to actually pursue a career change and act upon it.

3 in 1- 3 ways to improve your small business in 1 easy step

There’s something about January that makes us rethink all our habits and practices, particularly those that pertain to business and finance. We strive to make changes to be better in our businesses and our lives. As the small business owner or independent contractor, the competition out there can make such changes difficult to determine. We’re made to stay on our toes and make modifications that will give our company the edge, but how can you decide what change to make, when, or where?

Luckily, there is a simple solution for many such issues and it is without a large investment of time or money. You might even enjoy yourself!

I like to call it the three-fer. You get three amazing results with one super simple step.

Step 1: Sign up for Invoice Home

Boom! Done, end of story. For those of you who don’t like to read, that’s all you need to know. But if you interested in the hearing about the potential results, stick around to find out how Invoice Home, an online software system that generates 100s of free invoice templates, can benefit you and your company.

 

  • Improve Efficiency:

 

For small business owners and independent contractors, a large part of your day is spent doing tasks that are separate from your actual project.  Administrative and financial paperwork can easily take much needed time away from more important duties. However, these clerical chores still need to get done.

Invoicing can be one of those loathsome, time-consuming tasks and the more you hate to do something, the more likely you are to put it off (which just leads to more wasted time). But with Invoice Home, you can literally create and email an invoice to a client in under a minute. So after shaking your new client’s hand or receiving an email from them, you can almost instantly shoot them an invoice without disturbing your flow of work.

With all of this free time there’s nothing stopping you from acquiring more clients, researching new business tactics or maybe just shutting down early for the day.

 

  • Spend less money:

 

Money is another thing can’t be wasted by startups and small businesses. You’ve probably put a large portion of your own money into this company or project and every little saving helps. This is where Invoice Home scores again, as their system has 2 different plans. The first is the Free Plan, which is great for those of you who are just starting out and don’t have a ton of clients so far and aren’t invoicing that much (yet). You have full access to an account where you can create and email invoices as long as you’re under a grand total of $1000/month.

And when you start to pick up steam and make enough cash to exceed $1000/month, it’s only $5/month after that. So if once a month you have to go without your grande gingerbread latte or that last pint of your favorite microbrew, just know it’s for the betterment of your business.

 

  • Stand out from the crowd:

 

When you first started out, you probably took a long time to decide on a logo or design that would represent your company. So why shouldn’t your invoices reflect a bit about your company and your own personality? Here’s where Invoice Home comes through once again. Instead of standard black and white invoices which look like every other one out there, they offer 100s of free invoice templates which are carefully crafted by graphic designers. They provide a bunch of different themes, moods and colors to choose from. And then to top it off, you can add your own logo or photo on the invoices.

When you email invoices or quotes to your customers, they definitely won’t forget who you are. And if you can stand out from the crowd, chances are you’ll get paid first.

There you have it folks, one step and you’re on your way to more time, more money and more personality. Are you going to take it? See how far the results carry you and your business for years to come.

5 Simple Ways to Improve Your Credit Score Fast

You know your credit score is important. After all, lenders use this three-digit number to decide whether to approve you for new loans and lines of credit. That’s a big deal if you need a loan to buy a car, become a homeowner or start a business.

When your credit score falls short of your expectations, fixing it is a priority. The question is how to improve your credit score quickly so that you can move forward with your financial goals. With the right plan, you can begin to see an improvement in your score in just a few months.

1. Know what’s working against you

Your credit score is based on what’s in your credit report. Things like late or missed payments, high credit card balances and numerous inquiries for new credit can all drag your score down. Taking a look at your credit habits can help you understand why your score is low.

2. Get on a payment schedule

Payment history is THE biggest influencer when it comes to your credit score. Even one late payment could knock up to 100 points off your score. If you’ve paid late in the past, you should be focused on paying on time, every time going forward. Set up email or text alerts with your credit cards and loan accounts so you know when they’re due each month. If you want to make absolutely sure you’re never late, schedule automatic payments for all of your bills.

3. Set up balance alerts with your credit cards

Next to payment history, your credit utilization has the next biggest impact on your score. This means how much of your available credit you’re using. If you have balances on one or more of your credit cards, you could make a difference in your score quickly simply by paying them down.

Aiming to use 30% or less of your total credit limit is a good benchmark to follow if you’re hoping to improve your credit score. To keep yourself under the limit, set up balance alerts with your credit cards so you know how much of your credit line you’re using at any given time.

4. Increase your credit limits if possible

As you work on paying down your credit cards, you can improve your credit score in a different way. Asking for a credit limit increase can widen the gap between what you owe and your credit limit. Many credit cards let you request an increase online but if you don’t have a great credit score, you may be better off calling and making your case to a customer service rep.

5. Check your credit regularly

Checking your own credit score won’t hurt you and it can be helpful to see where you’re starting from and what’s working for you or against you over time. You can check your free credit score with Credit Sesame. Your information is updated monthly so you can see what kind of progress you’re making in your credit improvement efforts.

Can You Withdraw From Your RRSPs Before You Retire?

If you have a traditional RRSP, you might be wondering if it is possible to take money out of it for an emergency before you reach retirement age. The answer is “yes” – you can withdraw from your RRSP before you retire, but you will have to pay tax on it immediately. And the sad reality is the taxes might be much more than you would pay if you waited until you were retirement age. Also, if you withdraw money from your RRSP early, then you take the chance of permanently altering the original contribution room you had to save according to government guidelines.

What are the tax consequences of withdrawing from your RRSP ahead of time?

When you withdraw from your RRSPs before you actually retire, then the financial institution holding the funds is required to take an immediate tax and pay it to the government in your name. Depending on what the specific tax rate is, the amount you will pay will probably be somewhere between 10-30% and is determined by how much you withdraw. If you live in Quebec, you might get a slight break with the taxes only being between 5-15%, but there will also be a provincial tax amount held back.

Also, if you withdraw money from your retirement account early, then the amount that you take out is subject to being taxed. The money from your RRSP becomes “taxable income” – so in reality, you are taxed on the same money twice. Whether or not that will affect how much you owe on your taxes is related to your earnings and income situation. But before you take money from your RRSP, it is essential to understand whether it could put you in a higher tax bracket and end up costing you a whole lot.

What is the anti-avoidance rule?

In July of 2011, a new anti-avoidance rule went into effect to encourage people not to take money from their Assiniboine Credit Union RRSP accounts. The government decided that any money that you withdraw before retiring is considered income and taxed accordingly. The rule is that you are supposed to pay the amount of tax that equals the total amount of money that you gained at a rate of 100%.

What are the two reasons that withdrawing from your RRSP makes financial sense?

If you use it to buy your first home

The laws state that you and your spouse are both allowed to borrow as much as $25,000 out of your RRSP account if you are going to use it as a down payment on your first home. Under the Home Buyers’ Plan, if you use your RRSP money for a home purchase, then you don’t have to pay any taxes on it – as long as you pay it back within 15 years from when you borrow it.

If you use it to pay for training or education

If you or your spouse wants to use your RRSP for educational goals or to attend training, then you may both borrow up to $20,000 from your plan to pay for either part-time or full-time educational expenses under the LifeLong Learning Plan. The maximum you can withdraw in any one year is $10,000. If you do take out money to further your educational goals, it won’t be taxed as long as you pay it back within 10 years from when you borrow it.

If you find yourself in an emergency where you need money quickly, then you might want to really think twice about withdrawing money from your RRSP instead of trying to take out a loan. Sometimes, depending on the amount you withdraw and your income tax bracket, you might end up owing more than you think. If you use it for either a first-time home purchase or to further your education, then it might be a good idea. Just make sure that you pay it back in the time allotted, or you can end up being taxed on it twice – which can add up quickly.

Benefits of Owning Your Own Business

A lot of people would agree that putting up your own business brings a lot of benefits. Surely enough, that is true, but it has to be a successful one.

Now, if you’ve saved up some money and you’re still contemplating whether or not you’re going to create your own business venture, then I am here to convince you.

In today’s article, I will be going over some of the benefits of owning your own business.

  1.    You are the Boss

So, you’re probably accustomed to taking orders from your boss and doing what is required of you every single day.

That may be good and all, but there might be times where you just don’t want to work on something, especially if it is something that you do not want to do.

Well, if you have your own business, you are the boss. You are going to be the one calling the shots. You are going to be the one who steers the company/business towards the direction you want to go.

Essentially, you have all the power. Don’t want to work for today? That’s fine, you can just have someone to work on something for you.

  1.    Hire Your Own Staff

When you are going to do something grand, say, putting up your own money-making machine, you need to have people who you can trust.

When you are the leader of the business, you have the responsibility of hiring your own staff. Perhaps you want to hire your best friend to do some accounting duties. Or maybe, you want your wife to do the Human resources work that is needed by your business. Whatever it is, you have complete control of who you want to hire.

  1.    You Can Make Investments

Maybe you want to create a restaurant business or maybe, you want to sell some computer components. Whatever it is, you’re going to be the one to make the investments. After all, you are the boss, right?

  1.    Management

Running a venture from the ground up can be tiresome, so you definitely need to be in complete control.

If your business has grown considerably, you will need to hire more personnel to handle the workload. The beauty of owning your own business is that you can manage everything in your company. You even have the power to manage the finances as well.

Speaking of finances, if you find that your business requires some more money, you might want to consider getting some from cash advance online schemes.

From the staff person to the manager, you have what it takes to keep your service up and running.

  1.    Feel Pride

And lastly, once you’ve built your own business and made it successful for the years to come, you will feel that sense of pride and accomplishment.

Let me tell you, owning your own business is hard. But, once you’ve figured it out how to stay relevant for the years to come, nothing can beat that feeling of pride.

Conclusion

So there you have it. There are a lot of benefits to owning your own business. You are the boss, you can hire the people you trust, you can steer the company to the right direction, and best of all, you can feel awesome just making a venture from the ground up.