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One of the most annoyingly stressful things you can do is your taxes. If you haven’t got a math degree, getting to the end of a horrible tax return can feel as big an accomplishment as climbing Everest. But what happens when you finish, and you find out that you owe more tax to the IRS than you can afford? It can be annoying to find out that you won’t be getting that tax refund that can get you out of a jam, to find out that there is more money you have to pay can be quite stressful, and you don’t want to get in trouble with the IRS or get a criminal record. But there are things around resolving the issue, and making sure that you stay on the good side of the IRS.

Step 1: Double Check Your Return

It may be possible that you made errors on your return, as it is easy to add the same income twice, or you didn’t make a deduction. If you thought that you were qualified for a credit or deduction, make sure that you answered the questions correctly. If your return details are the same as the previous tax year, something could be amiss on the side of the IRS. Call or write to the IRS so you can get clarification on the issue.

Step 2: Reduce The Amount Of Penalties And Interest

If you owe a large sum of money, it can be a lot worse when you pay interest and penalties on top of what you originally owed. There are specific law firms that can help, you can seek help from tax professionals Mackay, Caswell & Callahan and other firms that are specifically oriented to help people with tax issues. But you can reduce your penalties by one of the following:

Exceptions to underpayment – if you underpaid this year but you owed less in the last tax year, you do not pay a penalty.

Ask for an abatement – write a letter to the IRS explaining your financial situation, for example, if you have mitigating circumstances, such as a long illness, the IRS may actually waive the penalties. Use the term “abatement” in your letter.

Pay as soon as you can – filing early or paying as much as you can shows willing.

Step 3: Ask To Pay In Installments

Filing Form 9465, the Installment Agreement Request, to set up a payment plan will allow you some breathing space, and if you show you cannot pay the amount in full, the IRS must let make payments in three years or less if you owe $25,000 or below.

Step 4: Offer In Compromise (OIC)

The IRS negotiates back taxes through an OIC, but you will have to offer, at least, your net worth. An OIC is very similar to bankruptcy, so it is an option, but you must be sure to only use this as a completely last resort.

Owing money to any organization can be stressful, but you can get a lot of help from the IRS. But above all else, don’t panic.

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Student @ Advanced Digital Sciences Center, Singapore. Travelled to 30+ countries, passion for basketball.

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6 Tips for the Ideal Desk Set Up to Unlock Your Potential

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Today’s ideal desk setup is a little different from the one that professionals a few years ago were used to. It is still possible to see office desks with huge amounts of tangled cables on and around it. These are often the ones that have been converted into more modern solutions, but they were not initially ready to welcome the number of devices and tech items we need to make our job more fruitful. 

Make Space for Your Phone, Laptop, and Tablet

Ensure that there is space on your desk for a laptop, keyboard, phone, and tablet. Even if we all try to stay off technological devices as much as possible, we rely on them for several activities. 

Positioning them so they are easily reachable and in order could be essential to speed up most processes. 

Using stands and holders can also help you keep all of your incoming notifications under control without interrupting your workflow to check your phone. This is an essential part of the best desk setups in modern offices.

Keep the Cables in Order

Keeping the cables in order on your desk is one of the biggest challenges for most office professionals. However, since you will always be using the same plugs and tables, you could opt to implement easy-to-use clips and cable ties to keep all the cords in place and out of your way.

Don’t Be Ashamed to Stick to the Good Old Pen & Paper.

While most of your tasks will be completed thanks to computer software, there is nothing better than a simple pen and paper to note down important information or to-do lists. Having post-it notes around you can help you be more efficient and less forgetful. 

For a complete kit, you could use recycled paper and a vintage, old-school pen that can enhance your desk’s look. No matter what innovation you introduce in your company to get out of your startup shell, a pen and paper will always be there!

Opt for a Versatile Standing Desk

Using a standing desk has been seen as beneficial under many viewpoints. Indeed, this habit can help you find a more in-depth focus, more motivation, and cut our distractions. All this while limiting the strain on your back and neck.

At the same time, standing for long hours can be not as beneficial for your legs, especially if you suffer from knee problems. In this case, finding a versatile solution that allows you to sit when you need it and stand when you need to be more productive can be optimal. 

Clean and Sanitize the Area Often

While offices have started to reopen, the risk of contagion has not significantly decreased. Therefore, limiting the number of items and decorations on your desk can help you keep your area clean and tidy. Of course, this can also make the process of sanitizing surfaces much more straightforward. 

Have a Plant Nearby!

Having a plant in a room can be extremely beneficial. Adding one on your desk has been seen as capable of encouraging creativity, lowering stress levels, improving air quality, and stabilizing mood. All this while making your workplace more stylish and attractive.

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Six Tips For New eCommerce Businesses

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eCommerce is a constantly evolving sector, and as a new business, it can feel overwhelming. In this post, we’ll take a look at six of the hottest eCommerce tips to help you get your new eCommerce business up and running. 

Your website is your first impression. 

As a new eCommerce site, customers will have very little knowledge of your brand, and so you have just a fraction of a second to make a good impression. A website that is slow to load, poorly designed, and difficult to use will not build trust and confidence and will lose you sales. Take the time to make sure that you create the best website that you can for your budget and conduct the necessary UX testing to ensure that it is functional. 

Make sure that you’re mobile-friendly.  

The average person spends more than 100 minutes on their mobile phone every day, and so it is essential that your eCommerce site is fully functional on mobile and tablet devices as well as on laptops and desktops. With more and more people now using their phones as personal computers, shopping is becoming increasingly mobile, so having a mobile-friendly site is key. 

Invest in quality stock 

It should go without saying, but quality must always be put above quantity when purchasing or making items to sell in your store. There are a number of different wholesale sites out there, such as Alibaba, Oberlo, and Doba, and they can be a minefield to navigate. Learn how to buy from alibaba.com here. 

Social media will be your best friend.

It is virtually impossible to launch a thriving eCommerce business without a social media presence. Social media gives you a glimpse into the wants and needs of your potential customers and target audiences, but it is also an invaluable free and paid marketing tool. In particular, Instagram is now known as the number one social media platform for eCommerce sites, but for maximum reach, don’t forget to build a presence on other social media networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and TikTok too.

Invest in your images 

Pictures tell a thousand words, and when it comes to eCommerce, they are also processed by your customers much faster. With 60% of people being visual learners, images are invaluable to your business, so do invest in a good photographer and take some professional pictures to ensure that your customers have all the pictures they need to make their decision. 

Use a live-chat

Lastly, as a small eCommerce business, you likely do not have a customer service department, but that doesn’t mean that you can neglect customer interactions. A live-chat feature makes it easy for you to answer customer questions and to speak with customers while they are on your site, just as if they were shopping in a real store. 21% of people who shop online say that live-chat tempts them to buy, 46% of people think that live-chat is the perfect digital communications tool, and 62% of shoppers say that they are more likely to return to a site that has live-chat installed. 

So there you have it – six tips for new eCommerce businesses, did you find them helpful? Why not share your own suggestions in the comments.

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3 Tips For An Easy House Move

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Moving home is so exciting, right? A fresh start, a lovely new place, a new neighbourhood to explore. You feel like a little kid again – those night-before-the-move jitters and arranging all your furniture into a great new space is an unbeatable feeling. However, as we all know, moving can also be expensive and stressful. Especially with lots of furniture, children, pets and a limited amount of time, the task can feel insurmountable. Here are three tips for an easy house move.

1. Hiring Your Own Lorry

Removal companies are great if you have all your own furniture, and no way of transporting it. However if you have a partially furnished let, wherein you’ll have some,but not all of your furnishings already set up in the new property, you could hire your own truck. This will save a lot of money and will ease your move. You can hire the lorry for as long as you need it, and you can have a fun road trip all of your own!

Ensure that when you hire or buy your own lorry, you look into lorry insurance and invest in proper precautions. 

2. Asking For Help With Child And Pet Care

If you are moving with young children, dogs or cats, the move can become infinitely more complicated and difficult. If you have close friends or family who can take care of your children or pets for you, this would help your move immensely. Having to take care of small children whilst lifting heavy boxes and organising a million things at once can be a big challenge, and can even lead to accidents. Children can be overwhelmed by moving house, so it is much better to have them come to your new home when you have had a chance to organise the space and make it feel like home.

Similarly, dogs and cats can become stressed by a change in location. If the place is in disarray, the animals can become even more frightened and restless. It is better to have a friend, family or professional pet care company take care of them whilst your house move is taking place.

3. Time Off Work

Although it can feel wasteful to take holiday from work just to move house, you’ll thank yourself later for taking the time. Moving into a new house might only take one day, but the unpacking, organising and cleaning process can take far longer. If you take a few days, or even a week, to complete your move, you can return to work with a fresh slate, knowing you’ll be coming back to an organised, calm home!

Plus, this way you can actually enjoy your move, rather than treating it as a stressful nightmare! You can make the most of the new space, experiment with the layout, and truly transform this house into a home which you will be enjoying for years to come.

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