That’s What She Said: Nicki Minaj Is Ready To Get Married

Nicki Minaj has a new man! The pair dated when they were teens and have recently rekindled their relationship. It’s only been a few months but they have reportedly already talked marriage and babies!

Nicki’s new boo is a registered sex offender and did 7 years for manslaughter, but Nicki reportedly said she doesn’t care about his past because he’s a good man.

What Kym thinks she meant to say was, “I need a man that needs me because I got his bail money.”

What Sherri thinks she meant was, “he’s a killer? have you seen my booty? That’s a killer too!”

But on a serious note Sherri warns Nicki if they actually get married, “get a prenup Nicki, please.”

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

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Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

How Candice Swanepoel Got Runway Ready for the 2018 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

Candice Swanepoel, 2018 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, RunwayIf a model wants to walk in the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, she needs to earn her Angel wings.
Candice Swanepoel spoke to E! News about how she prepared for the big event and gave…

E! Online (US) – Top Stories

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE :

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

‘Mrs. Maisel’ Season 2: Get Ready For Love ‘Triangles, Squares & All Sorts Of Shapes’ | PeopleTV

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE:

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Aaron Puts His Foot in His Mouth During a Group Date | Ready to Love | Oprah Winfrey Network

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE :

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

First Look: “Trouble in Paradise” | Ready to Love | Oprah Winfrey Network

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SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN:

http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE :

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Alexx Brings Up Tiffany’s “Bossy Aggression” on a Date | Ready to Love | Oprah Winfrey Network

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE :

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Kim Woodburn reveals I’m A Celeb crew in camp lurk in the bushes ready to stop snake attacks

I’M A Celebrity has employed “hundreds” of security staff to crawl through the bush and stop venomous snakes reaching stars in camp.

Kim Woodburn, 76, appeared in the show in 2009 along with Katie Price and winner Gino D’Acampo, and said they felt safe when they spotted snake hunters on their rounds.

KiminPink
Kim Woodburn has shared her expert knowledge of the Im A Celerbity camp
Kim Woodburn has revealed the I'm A Celeb stars will be protected in the wild by 'hundreds' of security
Kim Woodburn has revealed the I’m A Celeb stars will be protected in the wild by ‘hundreds’ of security
Rex Features

Skilled handlers jumped into action if a celeb was in danger, as Kim exclusively told The Sun: “You don’t see anybody when you’re there, but there are hundreds of security people throughout the jungle in camouflage equipment

“On your way to that dunny that stinks to high heaven, you might see one in the bushes.

“They are there because if you see a snake, or anything you think is frightening you shout “snake!” and you know that they are in that spot in a second.”

The likes of Fleur East, Emily Atack and Sair Khan signed up this year and have been shut off from the world.

I'm A Celeb
Katie Price starred in the same series as Kim back in 2009
ITV
The 76-year-old star said teams of people scour the bush around camp to clear the area of snakes
The 76-year-old star said teams of people scour the bush around camp to clear the area of snakes
Rex Features
KiminPink
The telly favourite has assured fans the stars are safe from venomous predators

Kim said they’ll soon get used to being blanked by crew members too, as the production team is banned from speaking to them.

She added: “The only other time you would see anybody is when they tell you to come up to the bushes and you’ll find a couple of chaps in camouflage and they want to change your battery.

“You turn round, he doesn’t say a word. You say thank you, he doesn’t say thank you back, and down you walk.”

Kim’s insight comes after former I’m A Celeb runner up Jake Quickenden said the staff fear getting sacked if they open their mouths.


Love I’m A Celeb? Play our new game The Jungle now – win daily prizes and a holiday worth £5K


Emily Atack
Fleur East, Emily Atack, Anne Hegerty, Rita Simons and James McVey
Rex Features
Emily Atack
Jake is pals with Emily Atack and Fleur East and predicted how they’ll fair in the jungle
Rex Features
Fleur East
Fleur’s pal says she’ll struggle with the lack of food but will get on well with the campmates
Rex Features

He said the novelty of sleeping in the jungle is about to wear off as the conditions become dire, telling The Sun: “People start getting hungry, then if it rains people start getting moody.

“Even when you walk into trials the cameramen don’t speak to you. You are that shut off from the world.

“I remember asking one of them ‘Do you know what the Man United score was at the weekend?’ and they said ‘Jake we’re not allowed to speak to you.’

Australia
A black ringed mangrove snake. Australia has seen a high number of snakes because of unusually wet weather


“One of them was eating a Tic Tac and I said, ‘Mate, I couldn’t have a Tic Tac could I?’ And he was like ‘ I can’t give you a Tic Tac I’ll get sacked.’

“I said, ‘you’ll get sacked over a tic tac?’ All I wanted was a different taste in my mouth. My mouth was dry for the whole time. You’re not drinking cold water, it’s always hot because you’re boiling it.

“My wee was like golden syrup by the end of it.”

Listen to new podcast Jungle VIP, talkRADIO’s cheeky, no-holds-barred take on the action Down Under. Hosted by Jamie East with daily guests, including former campmates and celeb reality TV fans the gang will dish the dirt on the REAL behind-the-scenes gossip. Read more here.

TV and Showbiz – latest celebrity news, gossip, photos, TV and film reviews | The Sun

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Ready for Homeownership? Here’s A Checklist to Get You Started

During the 2018 National Association of Realtors® Conference in Boston, Chief Economist Lawrence Yun mentioned that “millennials have outgrown their apartments” and are ready for homeownership.

Buying a home for the first time can be an exciting experience, but it can also be a bit mystifying. As millennials go on the hunt for the perfect home, there is a checklist of items that should be considered to make the process easier.

Ready for homeownership? Here are five things you can do now to get you started in the right direction.

1. Check Your Credit Score

Do you remember what your grades were in school? Well, in real life your grade is your credit score. This score tells lenders and other third parties how “financially responsible” you are. Credit scores have a standard range of 300-850. On that scale, a credit score of 700 or above generally means you are a good, credit-worthy borrower. Having the highest possible credit score allows you to take advantage of preferred rates when you buy a home.

Are you suffering from a mediocre credit score? Don’t sweat it. The UltraFICO score is expected to come to the market in 2019 and is expected to boost access to credit for those with scores in the upper 500s to lower 600s. You should also consult with a credit specialist or financial professional who can help you identify the weakest areas of your credit scores and help you improve your performance.

2. Get Your Down Payment Ready

More first time buyers are having a difficult time saving for a downpayment on a home in 2018 versus 2010 when the economy was in recovery mode. According to the National Association of Realtors 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, 27% of first-time buyers in 2018 compared to 16% in 2008 had difficulty saving for a downpayment. Determine the range you would want to spend or be qualified for on a home and then work with a financial professional to determine an estimated amount that you should save for a home.

3. Manage Your Debt to Income Ratio

Too much debt can get in the way of your dreams of homeownership—especially if you aren’t bringing in enough income to manage those liabilities. Draft an honest assessment of your monthly debt and income. Your monthly debt may include rent, student loan payments, and credit card debt. Now add all the income sources you accumulate throughout the month. Take your monthly debt amount divided by your income. That’s your debt to income ratio. So, if your monthly debt is $ 1,500 and your monthly income is $ 4,000, then your debt to income ratio is 37.5%.

What’s an ideal debt to income ratio? You can use the 36% rule as guidance. It’s a standard used by most lenders to determine the maximum about of your gross income that should go toward debt. Do whatever it takes to ensure your debt to income ratio is under 36% to increase your chances of receiving a qualified mortgage.

4. Determine Where You Want to Live

What matters most to you when buying your first home? Do you want to be near public transportation, malls, food, and schools? Are you seeking a small, close-knit community with running trails and parks? Determine what your criteria are for your first home and then identify neighborhoods that match your desires. This will make the homebuying process much easier.

5. Find a Realtor

You don’t want to walk the process to homeownership alone. Start researching realtors in your area who can walk you through the process and expose you to the resources that may be available to you during the homebuying process. When searching for a realtor, work with someone who has the knowledge, professionalism, and personality to make you feel empowered during the process. You should also seek out a realtor who offers buyer consultations. During this meeting, the realtor can help you identify areas of opportunity and educate you on property matters that you weren’t familiar with before.

This is a great checklist to get you started. If you want to keep going in your pursuit to find and afford your dream home, talk to a financial professional, CPA, and/or Realtor to keep you going on this journey. Do your research and make sure you have people on your team who can lead you to the best way to achieve your goal.

The post Ready for Homeownership? Here’s A Checklist to Get You Started appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Money | Black Enterprise

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Shop select Free People sale and clearance items at Bloomingdales.com!

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SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN:

http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE :

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Ready for Homeownership? Here’s A Checklist to Get You Started

During the 2018 National Association of Realtors® Conference in Boston, Chief Economist Lawrence Yun mentioned that “millennials have outgrown their apartments” and are ready for homeownership.

Buying a home for the first time can be an exciting experience, but it can also be a bit mystifying. As millennials go on the hunt for the perfect home, there is a checklist of items that should be considered to make the process easier.

Ready for homeownership? Here are five things you can do now to get you started in the right direction.

1. Check Your Credit Score

Do you remember what your grades were in school? Well, in real life your grade is your credit score. This score tells lenders and other third parties how “financially responsible” you are. Credit scores have a standard range of 300-850. On that scale, a credit score of 700 or above generally means you are a good, credit-worthy borrower. Having the highest possible credit score allows you to take advantage of preferred rates when you buy a home.

Are you suffering from a mediocre credit score? Don’t sweat it. The UltraFICO score is expected to come to the market in 2019 and is expected to boost access to credit for those with scores in the upper 500s to lower 600s. You should also consult with a credit specialist or financial professional who can help you identify the weakest areas of your credit scores and help you improve your performance.

2. Get Your Down Payment Ready

More first time buyers are having a difficult time saving for a downpayment on a home in 2018 versus 2010 when the economy was in recovery mode. According to the National Association of Realtors 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, 27% of first-time buyers in 2018 compared to 16% in 2008 had difficulty saving for a downpayment. Determine the range you would want to spend or be qualified for on a home and then work with a financial professional to determine an estimated amount that you should save for a home.

3. Manage Your Debt to Income Ratio

Too much debt can get in the way of your dreams of homeownership—especially if you aren’t bringing in enough income to manage those liabilities. Draft an honest assessment of your monthly debt and income. Your monthly debt may include rent, student loan payments, and credit card debt. Now add all the income sources you accumulate throughout the month. Take your monthly debt amount divided by your income. That’s your debt to income ratio. So, if your monthly debt is $ 1,500 and your monthly income is $ 4,000, then your debt to income ratio is 37.5%.

What’s an ideal debt to income ratio? You can use the 36% rule as guidance. It’s a standard used by most lenders to determine the maximum about of your gross income that should go toward debt. Do whatever it takes to ensure your debt to income ratio is under 36% to increase your chances of receiving a qualified mortgage.

4. Determine Where You Want to Live

What matters most to you when buying your first home? Do you want to be near public transportation, malls, food, and schools? Are you seeking a small, close-knit community with running trails and parks? Determine what your criteria are for your first home and then identify neighborhoods that match your desires. This will make the homebuying process much easier.

5. Find a Realtor

You don’t want to walk the process to homeownership alone. Start researching realtors in your area who can walk you through the process and expose you to the resources that may be available to you during the homebuying process. When searching for a realtor, work with someone who has the knowledge, professionalism, and personality to make you feel empowered during the process. You should also seek out a realtor who offers buyer consultations. During this meeting, the realtor can help you identify areas of opportunity and educate you on property matters that you weren’t familiar with before.

This is a great checklist to get you started. If you want to keep going in your pursuit to find and afford your dream home, talk to a financial professional, CPA, and/or Realtor to keep you going on this journey. Do your research and make sure you have people on your team who can lead you to the best way to achieve your goal.

The post Ready for Homeownership? Here’s A Checklist to Get You Started appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Money | Black Enterprise

FASHION DEAL UPDATE:

Shop select Free People sale and clearance items at Bloomingdales.com!

How Did We Get Here? Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice Was Reportedly in Talks to Coach the Cleveland Browns, Says She’s Not Ready

The Cleveland Browns were reportedly mulling over interviewing George W. Bush’s former Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, for a head coaching job — but it’s not happening.

via TMZ:

ESPN reported Sunday that the Browns’ front office was interested in possibly bringing Condi for an interview to replace recently-fired head coach Hue Jackson. She’s a huge Browns fan, and met with some of the owners during a game earlier this year.

Aside from that though … it’s unclear what, if any, professional experience she’d bring to the table … when it comes to football, that is. She’s got a pretty decent resume, otherwise.

The Browns’ general manager, John Dorsey, issued a statement shortly after the news spread like wildfire, saying in part … “Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is a great leader, possesses the highest possible character and also happens to be a Browns fan.” 

He fully shot down the speculation, though, by adding … “Our coaching search will be thorough and deliberate, but we are still in the process of composing the list of candidates and Secretary Rice has not been discussed.” 

As for Ms. Rice … she offered her own statement on the rumor, saying “I love my Browns — and I know they will hire an experienced coach to take us to the next level.”

After going on to advocate for the hiring of more women in coaching positions, she seemed to shut down the notion of a head coaching gig by saying … “BTW — I’m not ready to coach but I would like to call a play or two next season if the Browns need ideas! And at no time will I call for a “prevent defense.”

Condoleezza coaching in the NFL? Just put the whole 2018 in rice.

The post How Did We Get Here? Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice Was Reportedly in Talks to Coach the Cleveland Browns, Says She’s Not Ready appeared first on lovebscott – celebrity news.

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SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN:

http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE :

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Are You Ready for the Feminine Revolution?

I have been told that I am too sensitive or too emotional. I’ve been told that I use too many capital letters. I have been told repeatedly that my emails scared someone, that I should tone it down to appear professional. (I was even named “Most Likely to Clap Her Hands for No Reason” in my high school yearbook.)

It’s true: I have always been enthusiastic and had more obvious feelings than others in a room. That’s why I loved reading The Feminine Revolution: 21 Ways to Ignite the Power of Your Femininity for a Brighter Life and a Better Worldby Catherine Connors and Amy Stanton, which flipped the narrative—and encouraged women like me to reframe old standards that have claimed that “traditional” feminine traits are weak or bad.

“Femininity isn’t some pre-determined, universal condition,” the authors assert, “nor is it a set of one-size-fits-all rules about ‘what it means to be a woman.’ Femininity is an experience that flexes and moves and evolves according to the terms of the person who is living and defining it.” The definition Connors and Stanton offer throughout the book’s 21 sections is radically subversive—and illuminating.

“Femininity is powerful,” they write. “It’s really powerful. And being in that power doesn’t only feel good and lead to better relationships and a more fulfilling life—it can change the world.”

I cry in public. I love stickers and emojis and being a cheerleader for my project teams. I am tired of people trying to shame me for being a sensitive person who shows her emotions, and I am ready to claim my own feminine power and admit that those very traits that others have disparaged are some of the very reasons I have accomplished so much.

Connors envisions sensitivity as a superpower in the first chapter of Feminine Revolution, which felt personally revelatory. I notice things, but I often do not share them—because people have tried to convince me that it is inappropriate. Now, I can see that I have superpowers: that what I observe is special, and that I have the upper hand in many situations because of what I can see.

“Your emotional sensitivity connects you to the world,” Connors and Stanton remind readers. “It gives you insight into your own experiences and those of others. It is both a means (a tool and an ability that helps you get what you want) and an end in itself (the rich experience of being in tune with the world and with others is its own reward). Cultivate and enjoy it.”

I am ready to openly own my powers.

Nearly every chapter in the book spoke to me—from “Cry Openly” to “Flirt Freely”—but the fifth urged me to continue considering one of the things I have been focused on since my divorce: how to “Own Your Intuition.”

I have not always trusted my inner voice, but it has always been the right path. Clarissa Pinkola Estes urged readers of her legendary text, Women Who Run With Wolves, to “practice listening to your intuition, your inner voice; ask questions; be curious; see what you see; hear what you hear; and then act upon what you know to be true.”

The authors and Lisa at a book launch event.

Connors and Stanton pick up where Estes left off in chapter five. “Why should we trust these powers?” they ask. “Your ‘sixth sense’ isn’t extrasensory—it’s supersensory. Your ability to draw insight from what seems intangible or mysterious is in fact just heightened sensory ability: you’re using your finely honed skills of observation to pick up on cues that others miss.”

This is something I have always been good at as a teacher, a speaker and a writer. It is part of what makes me great. It might look like magic, but it is possible.

More than ever, I am determined to listen to myself. That determination continued to resonate as I worked through chapter six: “Express Yourself.” I have been told repeatedly and by many people that I am “over-expressive.” I have been told to “contain and control it” if I want to be taken seriously. Connors and Stanton urged me to do just the opposite.

“As social animals,” they clarify for readers, “we crave meaningful communication and are gratified when it is embedded with clear cues and signals. Especially in today’s digital world, when there’s so much room for miscommunication (in texts and emails), we would all benefit from more awareness, attention, and intention in how we communicate with each other.”

I am going to continue to express myself in my enthusiastic way—with colors, capital letters and even stickers. I am going to insist the world take me just as seriously anyway.

Connors and Stanton also continue to channel Estes in a later chapter aptly entitled “Unleash Your Wild Woman.” I’ve traveled to 101 countries. I once lived on a ship for seven years. For 18 months, I traveled in Asia on one journey; in another, I traveled for 11. I have been often been in the state the authors describe as “being free-spirited.” I am the woman they describe who can “go with the flow.” And I agree with them: “It’s wildly powerful.” I know that we need to roam and wander.

My choices to leave graduate school or work on a cruise ship seemed extremely poor to many family and friends, but they were the right choices for me. I had to follow my inner voice and create a path that worked for me. The authors suggest more of us do just that, as much as we can and in every way. “Do something that scares you every day,” they prompt us. “Push yourself to the limit. Know that it’s going to be uncomfortable. Embrace the experience. Be emotional and overwhelmed.”

When I left my marriage in Asia and returned to America alone, I joined a performance salsa dance team in Los Angeles. I wasn’t sure it was a good idea, but it turned out it was one of my best ideas. I was part of a group, part of a functional team. I had to show up every time and work as hard as I could. These were things that had stopped happening in my relationship, and I was practicing them on the dance floor. These were the things I remembered as the book closed out, and I reached one of the last chapters: “Sing and Dance.”

“Singing and dancing allow us to let go, to share ourselves, to be truly in the moment,” Connors and Stanton note. “The freedom we experience from taking time for ourselves and letting ourselves go physically and emotionally is distinctly feminine.”

I have my own advice for you: Be more wild. Dance more. Use as many exclamation points as possible. And grab a copy of The Feminine Revolution today, right after you hit “send.”

Lisa Ellen Niver is an award-winning travel expert who has been to 100 countries. Her website, We Said Go Travel, was read in 222 countries in 2017; her videos have over 2 million views on Roku, Amazon Fire TV and YouTube. Lisa has written for AARP, Sierra Club, Delta Sky, Smithsonian, and Robb Report and talks travel on KTLA-TV, but you can often find her underwater SCUBA diving, in her art studio making ceramics or helping people find their next dream trip. 

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Get Ready For Six Weeks of Surfing in Hawaii | The Vans Triple Crown Will Begin November 12th

Get ready for 12 weeks straight of surfing in Hawaii!

Ft the Hawaiian Pro – Vans World Cup – Billabong Pipe Masters’

Watch it live at worldsurfleague.com and Facebook Live.

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Alexx Sees a New Side of Tiffany When She Talks About Her Facial Scar | Ready to Love | OWN

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SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN:

http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE :

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Ready to Buy a Home? 6 Simple Steps to Save for the Down Payment

So you’re ready to stop renting, and we don’t blame you.

The price of rent has been steadily increasing since 2014, according to a recent Penny Hoarder analysis of Zillow data. As of October 2018, the median Zillow listing nationally for a two-bedroom rental is $ 1,646 a month.

Your other option is to buy a home, and that isn’t cheap, either. It’s a big commitment — but at least you’re gaining an asset and not funneling your whole paycheck over to a landlord.

If you’re thinking about buying a home, you’ll want to start saving for that down payment sooner than later.

Yes, it’s a big savings goal, but this guide will help you get on the right track.

Real Fast: What’s a Down Payment?

A down payment is the amount of money you pay upfront for your home — the money you’re putting down. Say you want to put 10% down on a $ 200,000 home; your down payment will be about $ 20,000.

This down payment goes directly toward you owning your home outright. What’s remaining will be covered by a mortgage loan. Like other forms of debt, you’re responsible for making monthly payments on that loan, which often include interest.

The more you’re able to put toward a down payment on a home, the lower your monthly mortgage rates — and the less you’ll pay in interest over time.

Pro tip: While you’re saving for a down payment, work to improve or maintain your credit score. The higher your credit score, the better chance you have to secure a mortgage with a low interest rate. If you’re not sure where to start, Credit Sesame is a free platform that allows you to see your credit score, credit report card and personalized advice.

How to Save for a Down Payment: Your Step-by-Step Guide

A down payment is different from any expense you’ve saved for before, including a car or a vacation.

“A down payment represents a ‘purchase’ that has longer-term consequences,” says Marc W. Lieberman, CFA charterholder and CEO of Shorepine Wealth Management.

“When you save for a vacation or a new TV, you are making a one-time purchase that likely does not have additional spending needs. A home is a purchase that requires constant maintenance and the financial wherewithal to maintain ownership.”

So how do you even start saving for such a big financial goal? Follow these six simple steps to start saving for what’ll likely be the largest purchase of your life.

No big deal or anything.

1. Determine How Much You Need to Save for a Down Payment

Woman doing finances
lamstocker/Getty Images

Before starting your savings journey, you’ll need to map out your goal. Here are some numbers to consider:

  • Generally speaking, what’s your budget for a new home? In your desired city and neighborhood, take a look at properties you’d be interested in and that meet your needs. To determine the maximum mortgage payment you can afford each month, personal finance guru Dave Ramsey suggests multiplying your monthly take-home pay by 25% (0.25).
  • How much money do you want to put down? Now that you have an idea of how much you want (or need) to spend on a home, consider how much you want to put down. Putting down 3% is considered low — but doable.

On the other hand, if you’re able to put down at least 20%, you’ll avoid making monthly payments for private mortgage insurance (PMI), which is generally 0.3% to 1.2% of your loan amount, according to Investopedia.

Don’t feel like you have to stretch yourself to pay 20% down, though. Say you take out a 10% down payment. Once you’ve made enough mortgage payments to hit 20% equity, you can cancel your PMI.

  • When do you want to make the big purchase? Set your timeline.

Remember: Buying a home doesn’t simply require a down payment. You’ll also need to consider closing costs, real estate agent commission, property taxes and homeowners insurance — just to name a few. You can find more details about closing costs in our first-time homebuyer’s guide.

Lieberman also suggests tacking on a 10% to 20% “slush fund” to your savings goal for any additional expenses. This can help cover any unforeseen maintenance required when first moving in. Even if you don’t need it (fingers crossed you won’t), it’s nice to have that just-in-case cushion.

Now, do some math. Calculate how much you’ll need to save each month — or week, if you prefer working on a smaller scale.

Using a mortgage calculator like this one from Zillow can be super helpful when playing around with these numbers.

2. Open a Separate Savings Account

A family at the bank
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Once you know how much you need to put away, start considering where you want to keep this savings. Keeping such a large chunk of money in your primary checking account is risky — just because it feels like that money’s at your fingertips, ready to spend.

Instead, open a separate, hands-off account. Lieberman suggests a high-yield-interest savings account.

Try an iOS app called Varo Money. Pair your Bank Account with a Varo Savings Account where you’ll earn 1.75% annual percentage yield. For context, one of my banks offers a savings account with an APY closer to 0.03%.

Additionally, you’ll pay no monthly service fees, no minimum balance fees, no foreign transaction fees and no cash replacement fees.

Lieberman also suggests looking into a laddered certificate of deposit (CD) portfolio.

Whatever you choose, remember this: You want your money to earn some interest, but you don’t want the risk (like you’d face with investing). You’ll also want to keep the money in an easily accessible account.

“The last thing you need is to miss out on a home because the cash wasn’t available for the down payment,” Lieberman says.

3. Adjust Your Budget

A father and son eating fast food
Kosamtu/Getty Images

Now that you know how much you need to save and where you’re going to stash that savings, it’s time to adjust your budget.

Take that monthly savings goal and build it into your budget as an expense. To make some room, you’ll likely have to cut down in other areas.

To get an idea of how you can tighten your budget, try using the free app Empower.

Link the app to your bank accounts, and Empower will track your spending. It will also categorize your spending so you can see exactly where you’re overdoing it.

Set a monthly spending limit and the app will show you a graph that can tell you in one snapshot just how you’re doing for the month. Are you over the line or under it? It’s that simple to see how you’re doing so you can adjust your spending accordingly.

It’ll take some finagling at first, but be patient — and realistic. Remember you’re saving for what’ll likely be the biggest purchase of your life, so it isn’t going to be totally effortless. 

4. Automate Your Savings

Woman looking at credit cards
Carmen Mandato/The Penny Hoarder

Now that you know you can afford to save these monthly sums, it’s time to automate your savings. This helps hold you accountable and makes the process easier and more hands-off.

“Automated savings is a wonderful way to trick your mind into living off of less,” Lieberman says. “It is amazing how much less one can live off of without even noticing the difference.”

If you’re using a savings account, set your paycheck to automatically deposit a certain amount (see Step 1) into that account.

The easiest way to do this is to adjust your payroll settings or see whether your bank will automatically do it for you — most do.

With Chime, for example, you can opt in to save a portion of each paycheck when you set up direct deposit. You can also turn on its round-up feature, which rounds up all your Chime debit card transactions to the nearest dollar. It’ll dump the digital spare change into your savings — a nice bonus.

You can also tap into an app. Digit is a great way to save toward a specific goal. Set your timeline and savings goal, and Digit’s algorithms will determine how much money you can afford to save, which will be stored in an FDIC-insured savings account.

Digit is free to use for the first 30 days, then it’s $ 2.99 per month afterward. If you’re saving for a big purchase, like your first home, that monthly fee could be worth it.

In all, automation is a great, hands-off way to keep building your savings — without obsessing over every penny.

5. Get Creative, and Cut Your Monthly Bills

Light bulbs hanging from ceiling
ArisSu/Getty Images

Outside of rent, your largest expenses are probably those monthly bills: electric, water, cable/internet, car insurance, student loan payments — you name it.

There are a number of ways to save on your monthly bills, but here’s a simple one to get you started: Download TrueBill, an app that’ll negotiate your bills, cancel unwanted subscriptions and refund your bank fees.

After downloading the app, create an account, and link your bank account and/or credit cards. Turn on the bill negotiation and outage protection features. Boom. TrueBill is already searching for potential refunds — it might get you a refund even when you didn’t know an outage occurred.

On average, Truebill says it helps customers save more than $ 700 a year by lowering their bills, canceling necessary subscriptions and getting refunds.

6. Increase Your Income

Dog walker
hedgehog94/Getty Images

If you’re still struggling to meet your monthly savings goal, you might need to boost your income.

Luckily, there are a ton of platforms that’ll help you start up a side gig, including one of our favorites: Rover. (Because dogs, duh.)

On Rover you can choose to offer a variety of services, including dog walking, overnight boarding at your home or theirs, and daycare. Rover says sitters can earn as much as $ 1,000 a month — just for snugglin’ pups!

Other flexible side gig options include driving with Uber or listing your space on Airbnb.

You should also plan to bank any windfalls — big or small. If you get a raise at work, automatically dispense the difference into your savings. If you earn a holiday bonus, bank that, too.

You can work to sell off some items you don’t need, too. After all, you’ll be moving soon.

If you have an old smartphone, tablet or laptop collecting dust, snag a a buy-back price estimate from an online trade-in platform like Gazelle. For anything else, consider Letgo. You can list just about anything on there — from cars to clothes.

Moral of the story? Slide any extra money you make into that separate hands-of savings account to go toward your savings goal.

Another Option: Seek Down Payment Assistance

If you’ve followed these steps and are still struggling to save for a down payment — or don’t have enough time — look into down payment assistance programs in your city or state.

John R. Thomas, a certified mortgage planner and the Delaware branch manager of Primary Residential Mortgage, outlined a few nationwide assistance programs:

  • Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans are government-backed mortgages for those who can’t afford to put a lot of money down. They’re a popular option for first-time homebuyers. In 2018, borrowers with a credit score of at least 580 could put down 3.5%, according to the FHA website.
  • If you’re a veteran, current servicemember or surviving spouse, you might qualify for a VA home loan, which offers competitive interest rates without a down payment or private mortgage insurance.
  • The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) also offers a no-down payment option if you purchase a qualified home and borrow from a qualified lender. Although it caters to those purchasing a home in a rural area, the definition of rural is pretty broad. Be sure to read into the requirements.

Thomas assures prospective homebuyers that these programs are simple to look into in any state.

In the end, know that buying a home isn’t totally out of reach. Just be patient with yourself, and you’ll be able to put the money away.

Carson Kohler (carson@thepennyhoarder.com) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She’d love to buy her first home sweet home… one of these days.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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Sen. Wyden Proposed a CEO-Felling Data Privacy Law. Is Big Tech Ready for It?

Consumers who have clamored for data privacy reform since Equifax’s ransacking and, more recently, Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica debacle have cause to celebrate.

On Thursday, Senator Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), a prominent privacy hawk, unveiled a draft bill that seeks to slap harsher penalties on companies–and chief executive officers–who run afoul of new rules that expand government oversight of the tech industry. The Consumer Data Privacy Act, as the bill is tentatively named, takes its cue from Europe’s General Data Privacy Regulation, or GDPR, which can fine companies up to 4% of their global, annual revenues for infractions. But Wyden’s bill goes even further; in addition to that penalty, the proposed law would jail chief execs up to 20 years with individual fines reaching as high as $ 5 million for CEOs who knowingly mislead regulators.

If GDPR has teeth, Wyden’s proposal has fangs–set on the jugulars of corporate heads. The proposed law would require big firms–ones with revenues exceeding $ 1 billion or ones that store data on more than 50 million consumers or their devices–to submit “annual data protection reports” to the government that lay out their data-securing practices. It would force companies to comply with “do not track” policies while offering alternative payment options to consumers, such as subscription fees instead of ad-supported “free” models. And it would boost the power of the Federal Trade Commission, adding a tech-focused division with a broader mandate alongside an arsenal of stronger enforcement actions.

Lindsey Barrett, an attorney and teaching fellow at Georgetown Law’s Communications & Technology Clinic within the school’s Institute for Public Representation, commented on Twitter that the proposed legislation “injects sorely needed accountability into our equif*cked information ecosystem.” Wyden’s own statement was a little more sanitized: “It’s time for some sunshine on this shadowy network of information sharing,” he said.

But the proposed reform isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Jake Williams, an alumnus of the National Security Agency who has since cofounded Rendition InfoSec, a cybersecurity consulting shop, said he doubts the bill will pass. “Even if it does, it won’t mean what you might think. It won’t create a SOX style environment around cyber. Sorry,” he wrote on Twitter, referring to Sarbanes-Oxley, a 2002 financial reform enacted in the wake of the Enron scandal to prevent similar accounting blowups.

The main thrust of Williams’ criticism is that the proposed law will box in cybersecurity practitioners and will subjugate and constrain an industry that is still finding its feet. The bill effectively grants corporate governance, risk, and compliance departments the right to “rule infosec,” Williams warned. If it passes into law, it will likely lead to licensing requirements within the cybersecurity industry, akin to the hoops people must jump through to become certified public accountants, he said. “Professional licensure is not good for a profession this young,” he said.

Data privacy reform is long overdue, but this bill presents questions. Is Big Tech–and its CEOs–ready to face the formalized wrath of guillotine-thirsting regulators? Does the bill unfairly target CEOs, leaving other C-Suite executives and board members off the hook? Could companies end up shoving the blame onto scapegoat CEOs of subsidiary businesses? And finally, as Williams noted, is the cybersecurity industry really ready to grow up and professionalize, accepting all the responsibility and regulatory constrictions that entails?

Be careful what you wish for.

A version of this article first appeared in Cyber Saturday, the weekend edition of Fortune’s tech newsletter Data Sheet. Sign up here.

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I’m Not Ready to Make Nice—I’m Ready to Make Change

Growing up, I remember starting more than a few metaphorical fires. I’d passionately argue with anyone on a range of topics: I fought to allow girls on the kickball team; advocated to save the life of an endangered insect found on the playground; even debated the best method for solving a math problem. While my arguments often had merit, I struggled in communicating my points to those around me. I had opinions, but I lacked diplomacy. I found no middle ground, no third option that existed between staying silent and going too far.

It seemed there was only one solution: If I could not be “nice,” could not make everyone feel comfortable and unchallenged, then I should say nothing at all.

Darakshan Raja speaking at a rally against Trump’s Muslim ban sponsored by Freedom Muslim American Women’s Policy. (Lorie Shaull / Creative Commons)

When I transferred to an all-girls high school in ninth grade, I saw that this experience of polite avoidance was universal. When topics of contention came up—such as racial privilege, homophobia and the complicated American political climate—there were only a few of us mature enough to meet the issue head-on. Having never been taught to address such complicated disagreements, much less how to address them, I was at first clumsy, abrasive, even tactless. Women are so often taught to be agreeable, to settle, to make peace for the sake of being “nice,” that often I brushed aside my personal truths for the sake of avoiding conflict.

But slowly, as I lived out my time surrounded by my female peers, I began to recognize an important distinction between “nice” and “kind.”

Kindness is genuine. It occurs when students lend each other shampoo and laundry detergent and textbooks in the dorms without the expectation of anything in return. It is fostered when upperclassmen offer guidance, advice, and free Starbucks to new students, hoping only to put them at ease and bring them joy in a time of difficult transition.

Kindness can be found everywhere and anywhere, and it doesn’t preclude the sharing of opinions or the acknowledgement of personal differences. In fact, the act of disagreeing, and of resolving disagreement, is foundational for true kindness—an understanding of another’s perspective, an act of great empathy that allows us to truly see each other for who we are. Solidarity created through resolved disagreement will always be stronger than the uneasy acquaintanceship between people who never truly try to understand one another.

To be “nice,” however, would be to say that every disagreement I had reached a resolution and that I somehow became friends with everyone with whom I was ever at odds. To be “nice” was to be pleasing to someone else, deferent and docile for the sake of their comfort.

With this realization, I was able finally to strike a balance between restraining my initial thoughts and unintentionally hurting someone. The truth is that no matter how much kindness and respect you give, not everyone will return it, and some people will withhold that basic respect because of a part of your fundamental identity.

If there is one thing I learned at Miss Porter’s School, it was to never ever accept the presence of prejudice in our society as unchallengeable. It is this idea that unifies so many of us—and can provide us the common ground upon which to disagree, respectfully and effectively, with one another.

The time for women and other historically marginalized groups to accept prejudice is long over, and the time in which we stood at quiet odds with each other, instead of in solidarity, must pass. That is the mission I was given in my four years of high school, and the mission I now pass on to all of you. It is not only our right, but our responsibility to speak up and demand recognition, liberation and change—for ourselves and for those whose situations are so dire that they cannot speak for themselves. To do so, we must embrace kindness and empowerment and reject “niceness” and complacency.

Your voice is your power. Don’t quiet it for the sake of someone else.

Jillian Landolina is a recent graduate of Miss Porter’s School in Farmington, Connecticut, and a first-year student at Sarah Lawrence College.

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Steven Yeun Is Ready to Seduce You: The ‘Walking Dead’ Star on His Award-Worthy Turn in ‘Burning’

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Steven Yeun jolts onscreen in Lee Chang-dong’s slow-burn mystery thriller Burning like a bolt of lightning: unexpectedly and impossible to look away from.

He is the debonair, impassive cipher Ben, a man of mysterious wealth and murkier motives—a modern-day Jay Gatsby, as working-class aspiring writer (and Ben’s frustrated romantic rival) Jong-su (Yoo Ah-in) scoffs resentfully. In Lee’s simmering, South Korea-set adaptation of the 1983 Haruki Murakami short story “Barn Burning,” Ben cuts a figure of stark, faintly malevolent glamour: the chic black Porsche to Jong-su’s run-down white pick-up truck. Understated class tensions boil over into paranoia and obsession. And Yeun plays the villain with effortless leading-man charisma.

The South Korean-born, American-raised Yeun—best known for his six-year stint as Glenn Rhee on The Walking Dead—easily commands the screen as Ben, rendering casual slouches magnetically aloof; politely-stifled yawns into inscrutable power plays. The actor calls it “beautiful and powerful” to inhabit Ben’s void, “to feel what it feels like to just be there watching, and really letting things wash over you,” he tells The Daily Beast.

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Gillum ready to ‘go there’ if DeSantis attacks in Florida governor debate

Only a few days after making his return to the campaign trail following a hurricane-enforced hiatus, Florida Democrat Andrew Gillum will square off with Republican Ron DeSantis on Sunday night in the first debate of their high stakes gubernatorial race.


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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

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Not everyone is ready to ride as autonomous vehicles take to the road in ever-increasing numbers

As more self-driving vehicles hit the road, one of the industry's challenges is finding people willing to go along for the ride. The task may be move more difficult than the industry might hope.
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Small Business Owners Ready to Hit Ballot Box Big Time in Midterm Elections

When it comes to the midterm elections in November, small business owners will be more registered to vote than the overall population.

That, at least, is among the findings of a new survey by Thumbtack, an online service for small businesses. The survey indicated 85% of small business owners surveyed report being registered to vote, versus 70% of all Americans signed up to vote.

Further, 93% of small business owners who are registered to vote say they “definitely” or “probably” will do so, while only 88% of registered voters nationwide say the same, a recent Washington Post-ABC News poll shows.

The survey showed 17.1% of small business owner respondents reported the No. 1 issue in determining their vote this November is the economy and taxes. Some 5.8% named healthcare as their top issue, making those the most important issues for nearly one-third of small business owners. There are roughly 30 million small businesses in the nation.

“Small business owners continue to tell us they want their representatives to focus on the issues that impact their businesses and their families like the economy and healthcare,” said Thumbtack Head of Public Policy, Kellyn Blossom stated in a press release.

“Small business owners are going to be a crucial constituency for every campaign this November. They care deeply about what affects their communities and plan to turn out in large numbers to vote.”

Thumbtack surveyed 980 small business owners from late August and early September nationally in hundreds of categories, including electricians, music teachers, wedding planners, and wellness professionals to name few. Entrepreneurs were asked about their voter registration status, plans to vote in the upcoming election, and the issues guiding their political preferences.

Additionally, Thumbtack and the Small Business Roundtable are partnering to make sure business owners’ voices will be heard this election.

The Small Business Roundtable is a membership-based group comprised of the Small Business Entrepreneurship Council, National Association of Women Business Owners, National Association for the Self Employed, U.S. Black Chambers Inc., National Small Business Association, and Asian / Pacific Islander Chamber of Commerce & Entrepreneurship.

 

The post Small Business Owners Ready to Hit Ballot Box Big Time in Midterm Elections appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News

CHARITY UPDATE :

Click today to request your free ACRX discount prescription card and save up to 80% off of your medicine!

SPECIAL DONATION REQUEST UPDATE:

Please help American Consultants Rx achieve it’s biggest goal yet of donating over 30 million discount prescription cards to over 50k organizations in an effort to assist millions of Americans in need. Please click here to donate today!

Hungry to Start a Food Truck? Get Your Business Road Ready with This Guide

For food lovers with the Midas Touch in the kitchen and ambitions of being their own boss, opening a restaurant would be a dream.

A really, really expensive dream. But there is an option that is slightly less pricy: running a food truck business.

While operating your own food truck will obviously still be a major investment, they’re typically cheaper than brick-and-mortar restaurants for a couple of reasons, including not having to sign a lease or employ a large staff.

But what exactly does it take to open and maintain your own food truck? I went to a seminar hosted by Tampa Bay Food Trucks to find out.

The company doesn’t actually own or operate any of its own food trucks. Instead, the it serves as a source of information and resources for local food truck owners.

Its network consists of over 170 food trucks and aims to help them generate as much revenue as possible by organizing events and alerting them to locations and catering opportunities. They also assist with the buying, selling and modification of food trucks.

Michael Blasco, TBFT’s chief eating officer and speaker at the seminar, wants to help potential food truck owners avoid making the same mistakes over and over, à la “Groundhog Day.”

While I can’t possibly impart everything I learned during the TBFT seminar, I can share some of the major tips, tricks and information I learned from Blasco.

Startup Costs

Michael Blasco poses for a portrait.
Michael Blasco, Tampa Bay Food Truck’s chief eating officer, teaches a seminar on the food truck business. He is pictured during a dinner break at a seminar in Tampa, Fla., on Sunday, September 23, 2018. Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all formula for determining startup costs in the food truck business, but let’s go over some of the major costs and decisions you’ll face in the beginning.

Truck vs. Trailer

Obviously, if you want to start a food truck business, this will be one of your first major startup costs. But do you want to go for a full-blown truck or a trailer? Your budget will play a major role in this decision.

You can find used food trucks with price tags between $ 15,000 and $ 60,000. But remember, you get what you pay for. You might be able to snag a truck on the low end, but if it’s in bad condition you could end up forking out double what you paid for it in repairs.

When shopping for used trucks, consider how much it will have to be modified to fit your needs and meet local health and fire regulations. The food truck is, after all, a vehicle, and your business will suffer if it can’t reliably get you from point A to point B. And if the truck is in the shop, that means your business isn’t making money.

If you’re willing and able to splurge, brand new food trucks will typically cost between $ 80-$ 100K, including equipment. Forking over that kind of money is a hard pill to swallow, but it means you’d be getting a truck that is definitely up to code and customized to fit your needs.

On the other hand, you could spring for a trailer. Trailers are generally more affordable than food trucks, but keep in mind that you’re going to need a vehicle capable of towing them. You have to factor that into costs.

Wraps vs. Paint

People order food at the Lakeland Food Truck Rally.
People order food at the Lakeland Food Truck Rally. Chris Zuppa/The Penny

Regardless of whether you choose a truck or a trailer, you have to brand it. And your design can make or break you. We all know we’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but let’s be honest — a really good design will naturally draw us in.

Painting your food truck will be the cheaper option, probably in the $ 1,000 range.

Your other option is a wrap, which is printed vinyl that will be adhered to your truck. These are considerably more expensive, running between $ 2,500 and $ 5,000.

You might balk at the price, but Blasco insists that wrapping a truck is the way to go. It can impact your sales upwards of 50%, he says.

Wraps are durable and will give your truck a clean design, which looks more professional to the consumer’s eye.

Remember, your food truck is literally a moving advertisement for your business. You have limited space, so carefully consider a design that will get your brand and name across clearly.

Blasco offers a few tips when it comes to placement.

Trailers typically ride pretty low to the ground, so your branding needs to be high enough that cars driving next to you can clearly see who you are. But for trucks, don’t put your name and information too high up, and definitely don’t put it on your serving window.

Generator

Brace yourself, because generator prices are a bit shocking: A proper food truck generator can set you back anywhere between $ 3,000 and $ 10,000. Yikes.

“Wraps and generators are like band-aids,” says Blasco. “It’s hard to accept how much they cost, but you just gotta rip it off.”

The type of food you’re serving and the amount of appliances you have will determine how many watts you’ll need to run on a regular basis. Do you need a refrigerator, freezer, fryer, stove, lights and an exhaust system? Oh, and don’t forget air conditioning.

Blasco suggests running propane when possible to avoid using too much electricity.

Don’t just consider the amount of wattage you need when generator shopping — consider also how loud the model is. Blasco warns that loud generators will deter customers and suggests they shouldn’t be louder than 68 decibels.

POS System

Sara Harper and Martin Restrepo order food at the Lakeland Food Truck Rally
Sara Harper and Martin Restrepo order food at the Lakeland Food Truck Rally. Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder

The whole point of your food truck is to sell your delectables to hungry customers, right? In order to do that, you’re going to need some form of POS, or a point-of-sale system.

Oh, you say you want to run a cash-only food truck? Blasco encourages potential food truck owners to rethink that plan.

Sure, cash-only is the cheapest option — all you need to do is buy a lockbox and you’re ready to go. But we are living in an increasingly paperless world, and people are less likely to be carrying cash. You could be missing out on potential customers by not offering card or mobile payment options.

Plus, a cash-only business means you won’t have anything to track your sales or inventory.  

Luckily for food truck owners, payment processing systems have come a long way, so you don’t have to sacrifice precious space with a clunky cash register. With some services like Square, all you need is an iPad.

This is another cost that can be considered both startup and ongoing. Depending on the service you choose, some costs you may end up paying include a monthly POS fee, card processing fees and mobile data fees.

Initial Product Inventory

Madison Bray eats nachos smothered in cheese sauce, guacamole, pico de Gallo and sour cream.
Madison Bray eats nachos smothered in cheese sauce, guacamole, pico de gallo and sour cream. Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder

This category goes without saying, but we’re going to say it anyway.

Some of your startup funds will have to go toward food, kitchen utensils, pots, pans, napkins, plates — the works.

Shop for products in bulk to save a penny or two, and consider potential food cost percentage when making purchases. You should aim to keep your food cost between 18% and 25% of overall cost.

A high food cost means low profit. But if your food cost percentage is super low, that probably means your prices are too high.

Operating Costs

Propane powers the Spontaneous Consumption food truck. Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder

We’ve already touched on a couple of ongoing costs that you’ll be facing as a food truck operator, such as inventory and card processing fees. Let’s go over some more, shall we?

Unless you’re going to be running a one man/woman show, you’ll have to pay for labor, aka employees. And consider some hidden labor fees, like travel time to and from location.

Some cities and states have health codes that prohibit food preparation within a truck, which means you have to use a commissary. A commissary is a licensed, commercial kitchen where you can prepare and store food; maybe you can even park your truck there overnight. But commissary use means paying monthly rent.

Some other recurring costs to keep in mind include:

  • Fuel — both propane and gas
  • Vehicle maintenance
  • Event fees
  • Marketing and advertising

Branding Is Key

Business cards sit at the window for Vanchetta Rolling Rotisserie during a Tampa Bay Food Trucks seminar in Tampa on September 23, 2018. Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder
Business cards sit at the window for Vanchetta Rolling Rotisserie during a Tampa Bay Food Trucks seminar in Tampa on September 23, 2018. Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder

Blasco stresses that in the early process of opening a food truck business, branding is everything. It’s even more important than the food.

“No one knows what or who you are, so presentation is everything,” he says.

One major tip: Don’t pick a name you have to explain.

Sure, you might have your heart set on “The Awesome Possum” as your food truck name, but if a customer sees your truck, what will they think you sell? That’s right. Their brain will automatically think you sell possum. And no one wants that.

On top of picking a clear name, Blasco stresses to all of the seminar attendees that you should pick a food theme and stick to it.

One food type means a smaller menu. A smaller menu means faster output, which results in more customers. As a rule of thumb, food trucks should aim to have about five main menu items.

When Joe Dodd first attended the Tampa Bay Food Trucks seminar, Blasco told him that his food truck would fail. His range of menu items was broad and the name, Taste Buddz, didn’t convey a clear theme.

Eventually, Dodd took the seminar’s advice and rebranded his business as Soul Food Street Kitchen, commiting to a clear name and one type of food. It paid off — his sales went up 30%.

A Day In the Life

Jacquelyn Hayes (right), and her daughter, Miranda Hayes, 14, serve customers
Jacquelyn Hayes (right), and her daughter, Miranda Hayes, 14, serve customers. Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder

We’ve covered a lot of the technical aspects of running your own food truck business; now let’s talk about the day-to-day life.

Consider yourself warned: Food truckers put in long hours, operate on a sporadic schedule and do it all inside of a sweltering truck full of cooking equipment.

On average, food truckers will shoot for 20 to 25 shifts a month, working double shifts three days a week.

When you’re working doubles, that means being up by 7 or 8 a.m. to get prepped and on site by 11 a.m. for a lunch shift, which will usually end around 3 p.m. Then you have to get everything cleaned and packed up, and head to your next location for a dinner shift. By the end of dinner and cleaning for the night, you probably won’t be home until 10 p.m.

Blasco says that the long hours and the heat are some of the hardest parts of working as a food trucker — that, and securing spots.

You could work with a company like Tampa Bay Food Trucks that helps you find locations and gigs. But if you’re operating solo, finding lucrative spots that you are legally allowed to sell at will be more difficult.

Let’s Wrap It Up

Cheerleaders hang out at a food truck rally.
Kassidy Lehner (center) hangs out with friends. Chris Zuppa/The Penny Hoarder

Get it? Like a food truck wrap? Please, hold the applause.

We covered a lot of information, but trust me when I say there’s a lot more to be learned about running a food truck business. We didn’t even touch on insurance, permits or any legal costs you might incur! But here’s a pro tip or two: Permits and regulations vary state to state, and your personal car insurance will not cover a food truck.

Hopefully, this information can at least serve as a starting point for any potential food truckers out there.

Ultimately, running a food truck is just like running any other business, even a brick-and-mortar restaurant. Preparing yourself with as much information as possible can only help you.

Kaitlyn Blount is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. If she ran a food truck, it would specialize in grits, and would be called Let’s Talk About Grits, Baby.

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This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.


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Big Wave Season Opens October 1st | Get Ready, It’s Going to Get Wild

WSL PRESS RELEASE

The WSL Big Wave Tour will witness the world’s best big wave surfers charging massive waves at three of the world’s premiere breaks: Mavericks, Jaws, and Nazaré. This is over the edge.

We’re on the lookout for storms that generate HUGE waves – and when they do – the surfers, fans, and a whole lot of cameras fly in from all corners of the world to put on a spectacle unlike any other. Check out the three places we’ll be competing this winter:

  • Mavericks is a heavy wave that breaks so powerfully that it shakes the ground. It’s three, four, sometimes FIVE stories of terrifying ocean.
  • Jaws, originally known as Pe’ahi, is Hawaiian perfection at 10x the size, which means peril for anyone who makes a mistake.
  • Nazaré is a liquid mountain. That’s not a metaphor — it’s consistently where the biggest waves in the world have been ridden.

Get ready to witness something truly incredible. The holding period is now open and runs through March 31, 2019.

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