How Can Accounting Firms Rochester NY Help You With Your Online Investments

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How Can CPA Accountants Rochester NY Help You?

Have you ever heard of an old joke about the three professions that won’t likely go to heaven when they die? They are supposed to be doctors, lawyers, and accountants. Why do you think so?

They said God wants to take one of His creations, but doctors do everything to prevent death, and lawyers defend even the criminals. Accountants, on the other hand, they said are as unscrupulous since they try their very best to make a client’s obligations to the government as minimal as possible through tax avoidance, or worse, tax evasion.

Of course, this is just a product of boredom. Being an accountant, doctor, or lawyer is a respectable profession to have. Accountants, in particular, are not all hardwired to steal money from the government. In fact, if you have ever tried working with one, you’ll know how important their roles in the business world are.

What is a CPA?

Certified Public Accountant is a professional title given to qualified accountants to provide accounting, taxation, and auditing services to the public. This particular title is earned by a combination of an accounting degree, passing the licensure examination, as well as having vast experience.

Aside from the independent roles mentioned above, CPAs can also handle integral positions in a company, namely:

  • General Accountant
  • Accounting Manager
  • Auditor
  • Tax Accountant
  • Financial Consultant
  • Finance Manager
  • Controller
  • Chief Financial Officer

How are CPA Accountants Helpful if You’re from Rochester, NY?

Rochester, New York is known as The World’s Image Center, being the home of imaging and optics giants like Kodak, Xerox, and Bausch & Lomb. No wonder this place is a very viable location for any business and a good choice when it comes to exploring career opportunities.

Naysayers say that accountants only count other people’s money. On the contrary, CPAs can do a lot more good for your business than you have ever imagined.

So, if you are thinking of doing business here or you are a CPA yourself and would want to start a lucrative career, here are the ways accountants can help businesses in Rochester, NY:

1. Business Startup

Tapping the services of CPAs when trying to establish your business may be the wisest thing you could have ever done for yourself. Since they have extensive knowledge about running a business and keeping it afloat, you can concentrate on other things like marketing or luring potential clients into patronising your products and services.

The CPAs role include the following:

  • Give you sound recommendations about the suitable business structure (sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company, or corporation) of the kind of company you have in mind.
  • Provide you a wide range of advice about how to begin, what documents to accomplish, what to set up first, permits and licenses to apply, and the likes.
  • Recommend the type of accounting software to use to record transactions since they have the complete knowledge of the process flow of the business, regardless of the structure and business type.
  • Train you or your designated bookkeeper on how to accurately record your daily business transactions like how to book salaries against booking subcontractors, the difference between expenses and capitalisations, etc.

2. On-Going Operation

As soon as your business start rolling, you need a steady hand to oversee whether the right processes are being implemented. Some of what accountants can do to maintain the smooth operation of your company are as follows:

  • Closing out the books of the business and interpret the financial reports provided by the bookkeeper or generated by the accounting software.
  • Recommend the necessary steps in order to solve or strengthen weak points in the business.
  • Make a forecast about the estimated tax due for the current year.
  • Prepare the necessary financial reports and submit them to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

3. Business Growth and Development

CPAs can also be a very crucial part of continuously growing your business, especially if you are thinking about expansion or developing another business segment. A few other benefits you can get from your accountant can be along these lines:

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  • Recommend aspects of the business that are viable for expansion.
  • Help determine whether the company can support and sustain business development by providing cash flows, profitability, return on investment, financial forecasts, and other similar reports.
  • Help in preventing the IRS from auditing the company.
  • Give sound advice about whether property and equipment investment is better than just leasing them.

If you are from Rochester, New York, and you ever needed the services of Certified Public Accountants for your accounting, taxation, and auditing requirements, please check here.

Parting Words

Often, when you feel like you know a little bit of everything, delegating your workload to somebody would be the last thing on your mind. This is very much applicable to your business. However, you might realize that CPAs are the right people to delegate the financial affairs of your business, regardless of how well-versed you think you are.

By letting your accountant take over the tasks that they specialise in, you’ll be doing your business a huge favor. As a result, you’ll be left to focus on other aspects of your business, worry-free. In the end, it’s a win-win situation.

6 Easy Ways To Start Investing With Little Money

Modified date: April 6, 2020

I’m here to tell you: You don’t need to be the Wolf of Wall Street to start investing. It’s okay if you’re more of a mouse of Main Street. Even if you only have a few dollars to spare, your money will grow with compound interest.

The key to building wealth is developing good habits—like regularly putting money away every month. Swap out the barista-made cappuccinos for coffee at home and you could already be saving more than $50 a month.

Once you have a little money to play with, you can start to invest.

In 2020, you can get a date, a ride or a pizza with the swipe of a smartphone screen. Investing is no different. If you can automate your bills, why not your investments? It’s just as easy.

With a robo-advisor, you can make your money work while you play. And just like Halloween costumes, investing comes in many different forms. It shouldn’t be a scary word.

Whether it’s opening a savings account, investing in your retirement or the real estate market, investing for beginners is simpler and more straightforward than ever before.

Soon you’ll see how addictive growing your money can be.

Here are six simple ways to get there:

Saving money and investing it are closely connected. In order to invest money, you first have to save some up. That will take a lot less time than you think, and you can do it in very small steps.

If you’ve never been a saver, you can start by putting away just $10 per week. That may not seem like a lot, but over the course of a year, it comes to over $500.

Try putting $10 into an envelope, shoebox, a small safe, or even that legendary bank of first resort, the cookie jar. Though this may sound silly, it’s often a necessary first step. Get yourself into the habit of living on a little bit less than you earn, and stash the savings away in a safe place.

Discover Bank currently offers a strong 1.50% APY on their online savings account. There is no minimum deposit required and no monthly maintenance fees (or other fees) associated with a Discover Bank online savings account so the yield is earned on all balances.

The brand also offers high-yield CD’s, checking and money market accounts so if you want to diversify your deposits portfolio a little bit, Discover Bank has a lot of what you need.

The electronic equivalent of the cookie jar is the online savings account; it’s separate from your checking account. The money can be withdrawn in two business days if you need it, but it’s not linked to your debit card. Then when the stash is large enough, you can take it out and move it into some actual investment vehicles.

Start with small amounts of money, and then increase as you get more comfortable with the process. It may be a matter of deciding not to go to McDonald’s or passing on the movies, and putting that money into the cookie jar instead.

Prefer that money to be invested right away? Consider an online discount broker like You Invest by J.P. Morgan. You Invest offers fee-free stock trades, fee-free options trades and fee-free ETF trades. Plus, they’re also offering up to a $625 cash bonus for new accounts.

You can link your Chase You Invest account to the variety of other Chase products (deposits, mortgages, credit cards etc.) so that all of your important financial accounts are in the same place.

2. Let a robo-advisor invest your money for you

Robo-advisors were created to make investing as simple and accessible as possible. No prior investment experience is required and set-up is easy. Let their automated intelligence track your investments in the background, and pay lower fees in the process.

Wealthfront

A robo-advisor that I highly recommend to first-time investors is Wealthfront. Their fees are reasonable at 0.25%, but the kicker is that you can get your first $5,000 managed free (specific to MU30 readers).

So if you’re looking to start investing with little money, Wealthfront could be the way to go. You will need $500 to get started though with Wealthfront so keep that in mind.

M1 Finance

If you don’t have that $500 starting balance, there are still great options for you in the Robo-advising space. M1 Finance charges no commissions or management fees, and their minimum starting balance is just $100.

You can choose from one of their pre-made diversified portfolios or customize your own by purchasing stocks and ETFs through their platform. The user interface is super easy to use.

Betterment

If you’re starting out with less than $100, you may want to consider Betterment, which has no minimum starting balance whatsoever. Like M1, it’s also great for beginners as it provides a super simple platform and a hassle-free approach to investing.

3. Make your first steps in real estate market

Real estate investing does not have to be for the very rich. There are many options for real estate crowdfunding and though this may seem like something you’d be nervous about looking into – it actually can be an intriguing investment.

With Fundrise’s really easy-to-use online platform, you simply need a starting minimum investment of $500. So if you’re an unaccredited investor, you can buy properties without paying those very large fees that end up being a deal-breaker if you want to start dabbling in real estate. By managing your own portfolio, the fees come to just 1% and Fundrise always offers a 90 days satisfaction guarantee.

4. Enroll in your employer’s retirement plan

If you’re on a tight budget, even the simple step of enrolling in your 401(k) or other employer retirement plan may seem beyond your reach. But there is a way that you can begin investing in an employer-sponsored retirement plan with amounts that are so small you won’t even notice them.

For example, plan to invest just 1 percent of your salary into the employer plan.

You probably won’t even miss a contribution that small, but what makes it even easier is that the tax deduction that you’ll get for doing so will make the contribution even smaller.

Once you commit to a 1 percent contribution, you can increase it gradually each year. For example, in year two, you can increase your contribution to 2 percent of your pay. In year three, you can increase your contribution to 3 percent of your pay, and so on.

If you time the increases with your annual pay raise, you’ll notice the increased contribution even less. So if you get a 2 percent increase in pay, it will effectively be splitting the increase between your retirement plan and your checking account. And if your employer provides a matching contribution, that will make the arrangement even better.

Blooom is a great tool for hands-off investment management of your 401(k). They’ll give you a free 401(k) analysis, telling you where and how they can optimize your investments. Check out our review of Blooom; if you decide to use their services, you’ll be charged a reasonable $10 per month.

And Blooom has got a special promotion right now: get $15 off your first year of Blooom with code BLMSMART

5. Put your money in low-initial-investment mutual funds

Mutual funds are investment securities that allow you to invest in a portfolio of stocks and bonds with a single transaction, making them perfect for new investors.

The trouble is many mutual fund companies require initial minimum investments of between $500 and $5,000. If you’re a first-time investor with little money to invest, those minimums can be out of reach. But some mutual fund companies will waive the account minimums if you agree to automatic monthly investments of between $50 and $100.

Automatic investing is a common feature with mutual fund and ETF IRA accounts. It’s less common with taxable accounts, though its always worth asking if it’s available. Mutual fund companies that have been known to do this include Dreyfus, Transamerica, and T. Rowe Price.

An automatic investing arrangement is particularly convenient if you can do it through payroll savings. You can typically set up an automatic deposit situation through your payroll, in much the same way that you do with an employer-sponsored retirement plan. Just ask your human resources department how to set it up.

6. Play it safe with Treasury securities

Not many small investors begin their investment journey with US Treasury securities, but you can. You’ll never get rich with these securities, but it is an excellent place to park your money—and earn some interest—until you are ready to go into higher risk/higher return investments.

Treasury securities, also known as savings bonds, are easy to buy through the US Treasury’s bond portal Treasury Direct. There you can buy fixed-income US government securities with maturities of anywhere from 30 days to 30 years in denominations as low as $100.

You can also use Treasury Direct to buy Treasury Inflation Protected Securities, or TIPS. These not only pay interest, but they also make periodic principal adjustments to account for inflation based on changes in the consumer price index.

And as is the case with mutual funds, you can also arrange to have your Treasury Direct account funded through payroll savings.

Bonus idea – Consider a 5% return with Worthy Bonds

For as little as $10, you can invest in Worthy Bonds. Worthy Bonds are fixed interest bonds that fund loans for creditworthy American businesses. The bonds have a term of 36-months, but interest is paid weekly and you can withdraw your money at ANY time, without penalty. Buy as many $10 bonds as you’d like.

The simple idea is that Worthy is going to take the money you use to buy bonds and invest it into companies with a greater return than 5%. They win, you win and it’s a fixed rate so you know the rate of return every day.

The platform is open to all U.S. investors and can be a great way to diversify your portfolio with a low-risk solution. Worthy only invests in fully secured loans (liquid assets having a value significantly greater than the loan amount), so the quality of loan and investment is always high caliber.

Summary

There are plenty of ways to start investing with little money, with many online and app-based platforms making it easier than ever. All you have to do is start somewhere. Once you do, it will get easier as time goes on, and your future self will love you for it.

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Start Investing with Little Money

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Article comments

We invite readers to respond with questions or comments. Comments may be held for moderation and will be published according to our comment policy. Comments are the opinions of their authors; they do not represent the views or opinions of Money Under 30. Comments have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser, nor are they reviewed, approved, or endorsed by our partners. It is not our partner’s responsibility to ensure all posts or questions are answered.

Good tips, thanks

Investment is a good thing especially when you invest in the stock market and know the history and the performance of the company, its annual turnover.

Not going to McDonald’s… Exactly what I was talking about previously. No, you have good advises here, people in disadvantaged positions may not have choices other than the ones you describe above or may have to consider the choices you describe above but no one dreams about “not going to McDonald’s” or whatever other fast food joint (I’m kidding here) people prefer. I immensely enjoy all your and many other finance-related articles. I want to educate myself. I am dreaming about investing, and I have no background in it, so I want to read as much about finance-related topics as I can. I have basic knowledge of a lot of things but I’ve never done investing. I recently started reading stuff on investing. You no doubt have great articles, obviously, great language, great page design, FANTASTIC. You know what? These would be fantastic articles for classes in shelters where people, of course, are trying to get on their feet. Homeless shelters already have a lot of classes probably including financial ones, you have language and design here that is understandable by everyone, and you talk here, you know, about things that maybe relevant to people in homeless shelters. You don’t talk here about ways to buy mansions, do you, and a lot of inhabitants of homeless shelters work, you talk about things here many homeless can relate to-saving money, even investing. It looks like modern investing requires very little money, and no doubt, many homeless people may have a little bit of money, right? Many of them work. You have wonderful topics here for those institutions, absolutely. Add to such lectures a few Oreo cookies and/or candies, and you are all set, right? Hey, I am trying to be modest here, if that was me, I had permission and a lot of money, I would give homeless more than Oreo cookies but a lot of people do not think that way. All right, guys, thank you very much for your wonderful articles, how are you doing? I am doing all right, is everyone getting prepared for the holiday season? At first Columbus Day, then-Veteran’s Day, then-Thanksgiving, holidays are coming up! Thank you very much for your wonderful articles.

This is a really silly question but i honestly do not know the answer. If you invest in stocks or bonds and they go south can you end up losing more than your originL investment? Can you end up paying more?

Elle,
No with Common Stock and basic bonds you can never lose more than you invest. Most ways to lose more than you invest is to have controlling active ownership of companies or partnerships or invest in riskier things like options trading.

How to Find the Best Financial Advisor

A 7-Step Guide

Hiring a financial advisor is equivalent to hiring a chief financial officer for you or your family. You want to use a disciplined process to find someone with whom you can work for many years. Finding the right person or firm may take some more time, but the investment of time will be well worth it in terms of your peace of mind. Here are seven steps to help you find the best financial advisor for your needs.

Understand the Types of Financial Advisors

Some financial advisors offer financial planning services but not investment management services. Others manage investments but provide little financial planning. Some have ​expertise in retirement income planning focused on those near or in retirement. Still others focus on wealth accumulation for folks who won’t be retiring for another 10 or 20 years.

To find the best financial advisor for your situation, you need to know what type of financial advice you need and what services a potential advisor provides.

Here’s a brief summary of three main types of service offerings:

  • Financial planning focuses on all aspects of your financial life such as how much to save and what type of insurance you need. It is not just about your investments.
  • Investment advisory services are focused on such investment management functions as what investments to own in which accounts. The best investments are chosen only as part of an ongoing financial planning process.
  • Retirement income planning is focused on how you coordinate all the pieces such as Social Security, taxes, investments, ​pensions, retirement date, and more, so they all align toward the goal of delivering a retirement paycheck for life.

Seek Financial Advisors With Reputable Credentials

All credentials are not alike. Some organizations create easy-to-obtain credentials for a fee so that salespeople can acquire a credential and appear to be an expert.

To find advisors or financial planners with reputable credentials, look for someone who has their CFP (Certified Financial Planner) or PFS (Personal Financial Specialist) designation, or an investment advisor who has their CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) certificate.

Credentials are obtained by passing an examination that demonstrates proficiency in the subject matter. To maintain the designation, an advisor must adhere to an ethics policy and meet continuing education requirements.

You can also see if a potential advisor is a member of The National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, a membership group of fee-only advisors that requires continuing education that goes beyond the required credentials. 

Know How Financial Advisors Are Compensated

There are numerous ways financial advisors charge for their services, but the most objective and unbiased financial advisors are fee-only. To hire the best financial advisor you’ll need to know all the ways a potential financial advisor may be compensated, such as charging an asset-based fee, hourly fee, participating in commissions, or charging an hourly rate.

Understand the difference between a fee-only advisor who represents you and a non-fee-only advisor. A non-fee-only advisor may be able to receive other types of kickbacks or incentives from their company based on meeting sales goals or objectives.

There are no right or wrong ways for an advisor to be compensated. What works best for you will depend on your financial needs. For example, if you are buying an investment that you plan on holding onto for a long time—and for which you will not need ongoing advice—paying a commission may be the most cost-effective option. However, if you want someone readily available to update your financial plan and address ongoing questions, a commission-based fee structure is not the optimal choice. 

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