Two HBCU Grads Share Why Vacation Rental Properties are Good Investments

After reaching his breaking point, Carrington Carter, a then-pharmaceutical sales manager, decided to leave the industry to make money off of something he loved, travel. Carter partnered with his former college friend and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity brother Calvin Butts Jr., and the two turned their passion into profit. The HBCU grads shared how they made traveling profitable through their venture Getaway Society and why other African Americans should consider vacation rental properties to be a solid investment.

How did you create Getaway Society?

The founders say that Getaway Society was initially started as a luxury group travel company that creates amazingly memorable experiences, but we decided to pivot out of that industry for a variety of reasons. A year or so later, it was [my] turn to lead the organization of an annual group ski trip in the Poconos. After identifying a house to rent, collecting everyone’s money, and then working with the homeowner to secure the house, he started running the numbers and thought to himself, “Wait a minute, I think I can do this. Why not buy a house and have people pay me to rent it instead of the other way around?”

This was in 2013, so Airbnb, HomeAway, and Vrbo were around, but not nearly as popular as they are now. Shortly after the trip was over, Carrington developed a plan, involved Calvin Butts, Jr. and Jeremiah Myers, two of his colleagues from Hampton University, and Getaway Society was reborn. Our love for travel, exploring the world, and social and family gatherings served as the catalyst to acquiring a network of vacation rental homes to share with like-minded people.

Calvin Butts Jr.: After starting construction on a brand new vacation rental home in the Pocono Mountains in September of 2014, and acquiring another vacation rental home on Martha’s Vineyard in December of 2014, Getaway Society evolved to a premium vacation rental home company, still creating those same amazingly memorable experiences. Now with approximately $ 5 million in properties we own and manage: one home in the Poconos, three on Martha’s Vineyard, and now one in Hilton Head with our acquisition this year, we are excited about the opportunities for growth in this $ 170 billion global vacation rental home market. Our ownership plus management model enables us to provide a consistent, luxury VIP concierge approach to all our homes.

Carter: With Getaway Society, we combined a few things that were exciting and important to us. We’re capitalizing on our growing interest in real estate, in a fun and engaging way. It provides multiple revenue streams and builds wealth, with the ultimate goal of financial freedom for ourselves and generations after we’re gone. It also touches on our interest in traveling and creating new experiences.

Butts: Think about it, many of us have been on a group trip with friends/family and experienced issues or did not know what to expect. At Getaway Society, we try to take the friction out of group travel and obsess over making our guests’ vacation seamless and enjoyable. At every single moment, whether answering questions before their stay, sending check-in/check-out instructions, or responding to any needs during their stay, we are eager to exceed expectations.

Carter: We also take the time to build local connections and relationships with private chefs, restaurants, and golf courses, etc. We have a diverse set of partners, contractors, and vendors, and we also make it a point to help black business owners to scale their business, not just through financial support, but also through teaching and mentoring.

vacation rentals investment

Why should other black investors consider investing in the vacation rental space?

Carter: By owning a vacation rental home, investors can realize rental income, which pays down the mortgage and builds equity in the home. Often homes in resort-type communities appreciate faster than traditional neighborhoods, which builds wealth and increases net worth. Investors can realize capital gains upon sale of the home. Also, investors can use the home as much as they like (preferably in the offseason so rental income isn’t impacted). What a great investment!

 Butts: Our favorite part is the “soft ROI” as we like to call it. The home can instantly become a valuable asset that can be leveraged and shared with friends, family, colleagues, and also clients… building better relationships in the process. It’s truly priceless.

How can homeowners use home equity to invest in vacation rentals?

Carter: There are three primary ways that homeowners can use home equity to invest in vacation rentals: cash out refinance; home equity loan; [and] home equity line of credit (HELOC)

Most banks will allow homeowners to tap up to 90% of the value, commonly referred to as 90% LTV (loan-to-value) of a primary residence. However, for an investment property (single/multifamily, commercial property, etc.), most banks will only allow 65%-80% LTV. Example: If your house (primary residence) is worth $ 500,000 and your remaining mortgage balance is $ 250,000, the bank will allow you to borrow up to 90% of the value (90% of $ 500,000 is $ 450,000). Therefore, after subtracting the remaining mortgage balance, you can tap up to $ 200,000 in equity ($ 450,000 – $ 250,000) to buy a vacation rental home, so long as the higher mortgage payment still fits within your DTI (debt-to-income) ratio.

In the above example, in a cash-out refinance, you would convert the home equity into $ 200,000 cash and have a new mortgage balance of $ 450,000, usually at a fixed rate. Using a home equity loan, you would have two mortgages/loans: (1) One with the remaining mortgage balance of $ 250,000, and (2) The other for $ 200,000, which is the amount of home equity you tapped, both likely at fixed rates. In a home equity line of credit (HELOC), the $ 200,000 in equity you converted would essentially work like a credit card with a variable interest rate (probably at least twice the fixed rate). You would have a $ 200,000 limit and could use it and pay it back as needed. There’s typically a draw (borrow) period for 5-10 years in which you’re responsible for interest only or 1% of the balance, then there’s a repayment period of 10-20 years in which you’re responsible for principal and interest.

We have successfully used cash-out refinances, home equity loans, home equity lines of credit, and private equity from investors to fund the expansion of our real estate portfolio starting with one single-family rental and growing to over $ 5 million in real estate in the past seven years.

 Butts:  Also, we won’t expound on it here, but aside from home equity, there are also ways to leverage one’s IRA (called a self-directed IRA) to invest in alternative asset classes, such as real estate.


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The post Two HBCU Grads Share Why Vacation Rental Properties are Good Investments appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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3 Women Share How Bullet Journals Helped Them Crush Their Money Goals

Keep it simple.

That’s the consensus when it comes to starting a bullet journal for your budget.

Forget the flowers, skip the swirls and just track your expenses and goals in a format that is easy to follow and maintain, according to Tayler Rothwell. And she’s no slouch in the creativity department — she teaches brush calligraphy classes at Whim So Doodle art supply store in St. Petersburg, Florida.

But when it comes to budgeting in a bullet journal, she advises to keep it simple.

“Don’t worry about design,” Rothwell said. “For me [bullet journaling budgeting] is almost less overwhelming because it’s like a brain dump. I don’t have to memorize it — I can just write it out and see it.”

Those pages of dotted grids staring back at you might feel a bit intimidating at first, but by focusing on specific financial goals, you’ll be able to create a spread that works for you. Here’s how.

3 Women, 3 Money Goals, 3 Bullet Journal Budget Ideas

At The Penny Hoarder, we’re big fans of using a bullet journal budget.

We talked to three people who’ve found enjoyment — and success — by personalizing their budgets in their bullet journal spreads. Here are their tips for using a bullet journal to reach your financial goals.

Budget Goal #1: Organize Your Finances

A man and woman write in their bullet journal

When it comes to budgeting, you need goals, even if the goal is just to find out where your money is going each month.

A self-described visual learner, Rothwell explains she and her husband, John, started bullet journaling their budget eight months ago. They began by categorizing their expenses, noting the payment method for each expense.

“We liked the categories because we’re like, ‘Oh my gosh, we’re spending so much money eating out’ and we had no idea,” Rothwell said. “I like to do the bars in color so it’s even easier to see where we’re at.”

Pro Tip

Experiment with multiple tracking methods to determine which is most helpful for you — that could be a bar graph, linear chart or sketch (think: bricks in a house for your mortgage payment).

In addition to the daily trackers, Rothwell created a spread for a bigger project: a kitchen renovation.

“I have day-to-day in there because I like the accountability to not spend a ton, because we’re on a budget,” Rothwell said. “But then I am a very goal-oriented person, so it’s nice for me to have, ‘new countertops are going to be this much money,’ and then save up for those things specifically.”

By assigning the project a specific color, Rothwell said the bullet journal helps her focus on the bigger picture instead of worrying over every detail.

“It keeps me looking at the goal instead of all the little moving parts.”

Budget Goal #2: Save for a Vacation

A woman writes in her bullet journal

Sure, you dream of a trip to Paris, but funding it is tough when the “extra” money every month seems to disappear.

After three years of bullet journaling for fun, Alicia Geigel of St. Petersburg, Florida, decided to use it to save up for her trip to Italy. As a freelancer, Geigel’s income varies, so she wanted to see where the money was going — and needed to go.

She created a system in which she tracked her expenses every day by color coding them, providing her a visual reminder to stay on budget.

“It makes spending more of a chore, so I don’t do it as often,” Geigel said. “At a glance, I can see, ‘Oh I’ve got a lot of pink,’ which stands for lattes, so maybe next month let’s not have as much pink on there.”

The bullet journal ended up being a more convenient way to budget than the apps and spreadsheets Geigel had also tried.

“I liked being able to stay on top of it without having to look at an electronic device,” she said. “And I always know what my balance is without having to have that anxiety of typing in your password and waiting for it to pop up.”

With the plane ticket already paid for, Geigel incorporated a bullet journal spread to save $ 2,500 for the rest of her three-week trip to Italy. She set a goal to save $ 500 each month, and seven months later, “I’ve hit my goals, so the extra is spending money.”

Budget Goal #3: Get Your Money’s Worth

Nelani tracks her Disney trips in her bullet journal

You know how when you make an oversized purchase — let’s say, bulk cheese — you think to yourself, “I eat so many quesadillas, this is totally worth the investment.” Then three months later you discover half the fromage growing penicillin in the back of your fridge.

Just me?

Nelani Palomino of Tampa, Florida, knows what I’m talking about. She invested in a 2019 Disney Silver annual pass for $ 439. Pricy? Maybe, but considering that a day pass to visit Mickey costs more than $ 100 — and don’t forget the $ 25 parking fee — the pass can be worth it to those who make multiple trips.

Certain that she’d get plenty of use out of it because her sister lives in Orlando, Palomino decided to start tracking her pass usage in March, which is when she realized she’d only visited the park once in three months.

Pro Tip

To incorporate annual expenses like subscriptions into your monthly budget, divide the total by 12 and use that amount as an entry in your monthly expense tracker.

She decided to use the bullet journal as a reminder to get her money’s worth from the pass.

“We made a conscious effort to go more often,” she said. “I’ve already gone four times this year, and that’s already paid for the pass.”

When Palomino swipes her pass at a park, she now tracks the day she went, the park she went to and that day’s ticket value, which changes depending on the time of year.

Additionally, Palomino gets a 20% passholder discount on Disney merchandise and dining, so she’s started itemizing her savings in those areas to help her decide if she’ll renew next year.

So whether you’re investing in an annual pass to your favorite amusement park or buying a Costco membership, try tracking your usage in a bullet journal to determine the real value you’re getting from your investment.

Need more ideas? Check out these five easy ways to manage your money using a bullet journal.

Tiffany Wendeln Connors is a staff writer with The Penny Hoarder. Senior Photographer/Videographer Chris Zuppa contributed to this article.

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.

The Penny Hoarder


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7 Black Women Share What No One Told Them About Motherhood

First time mothers can all agree, there were things they were told and other things they simply had to learn. For Black Maternity Health Week (April 11-17), we spoke to seven Black mothers who opened up about their experience with motherhood.

Jasmine Ramnarine, 30, Vlogger 

Source: Jasmine Ramnarine / Jasmine Ramnarine

Once you deliver your baby, your body and mood can completely change. Your hormones do a complete 180. My legs and feet became extremely swollen to the point it hurt to walk. I also still looked and felt 10 months pregnant after birth. It took about a week and half for all the swelling to go down.

My tummy took several months to return to its normal complexion and shrink down. My postpartum stage was so much worse than actually carrying my child. I suffered from postpartum depression for several weeks constantly crying, blaming myself for everything and worrying about my baby.

But with the help from my husband and family I was able to get back to feeling like myself again. Becoming a mother is a huge adjustment for your mind, body and spirit but I am so proud to be a mother to my daughters, I wouldn’t change my experiences for anything in the world!

Ty Alexander, 42, Best Selling Author/ Founder Of Destination Heal

Source: Ty Alexander / Ty Alexander

No one tells you how bad it hurts for obviously reasons. After 24 years, I think about how if I were educated about childbirth back then it wouldn’t have been so painful. I wouldn’t have declined that big needle in my spine. My doctor saw a 19-year-old kid, not a woman giving birth. So I wasn’t given options. I think generations behind me who are blessed with the Internet have an abundance of information. Research how you’d like your child birthing experience to be. It will make all the difference.

And lastly, you are a mom forever. It doesn’t stop at 18. This is a precious human being that you’re responsible for. Know that as humans we fail. You will fail your child. But all know that the love you give is what they will remember (and need) the most.

Christina Brown, Speaker & Digital Marketing Consultant

Source: Rae Faith Photography / Rae Faith Photography

Until I became pregnant, it didn’t occur to me that pregnancy is the ultimate 9-month preparation course for motherhood. The moment your child takes over your body, you are no longer living for just you. Every single decision you make from the food you eat, to the mood you’re in, has an effect on the child. And once the baby is born, those same decisions affect your baby

Chevonne Tingle, 38, Motivational Speaker 

Source: Chevonne Tingle / Chevonne Tingle

I had my first child at 19, a baby boy. I didn’t know much then about pregnancy and birth but I’ve learned so much in 19 years. I learned about the benefits of having a Lotus birth which is where you leave your child placenta and umbilical cord attached and allow it to naturally separate from the baby. I’ve also learned that standing while giving birth is the best and most natural position to be in. If you lying down, you’re going against gravity.

Ravelle Worthington, 32, Founder of Mommy Brain

Source: Aleah Clark / Aleah Clark

I was 27 when I became pregnant with our first child and while I had done the usual research on pregnancy and delivery, it never really occurred to me that I could question what my doctor was telling me during our check-ups. My son ended up being delivered at 34-weeks by emergency c-section when the ultrasound tech noticed what looked like a blockage in the umbilical cord. It all happened so fast.\

One moment my doctor was telling me I would need to have surgery right then and the next I was in a wheelchair being taken to the operating room. After delivery and further inspection of the cord, it turned out to be a gelatinous section and not a blockage after all, but we were erring on the side of caution.
Two kids and two c-sections later (the last one was planned at 39 weeks because my kids are 14 months apart and my new doctor — we had since moved out-of-state — didn’t want to risk a uterine rupture). Now, I’m currently pregnant with my third. What I’ve learned between these pregnancies is how to advocate for myself and that you do have choices.
This time around I’ve decided to try for a vaginal birth after c-section. I was already going to be at the hospital, so if I ended up needing another c-section I would be in the right place. Then I thought about it and realized I had options. I knew there were several doctors at Cedars who allowed for a VBA2C, so I asked for her list of recommendations and set up meetings with the ones I thought would be the best fit.

I now have a doctor who is on board with me trying (I’ll be monitored the whole time) and I’ve hired a doula to be there with my husband and I through the process. It’s so important to have a supportive team on hand.

Arielle Ryan, 26, co-host of The MillenniHER Podcast

Source: Olive Nwosu / Olive Nwosu

One thing I discovered as a new mother, one of twins at that, is how to really be conscious of the signs for postpartum depression and how to navigate through it. Being depressed for up to a year after giving birth was hard and being a young mother with very few friends that were mothers as well, I felt alone. I was moody, agitated, would have episodes of non-stop crying, panic attacks and found myself using other forms of soothing tactics to relieve the pain.\

If I knew then what I know now, I wouldn’t have waited over a year to seek professional help, or see a physician for a diagnosis. I would have trusted that my friends and family would have supported me in my struggle as opposed to assuming that they’d pass judgment.

Destiny Rodriguez, Forever 21 aka … 30

Source: Destiny Rodriguez / Destiny Rodriguez

Have a baby for you and nobody else. Not to fix anything, and not to make someone happy, nope. Won’t work. Having a child is a lifelong, bittersweet commitment. Make sure that’s the core/ foundation. Mental health is so important. So many people may say things like “Forget about you, it’s not about you, you can’t have a life “ etc… but please remember, it’s definitely about you. You can not give your child the best and you are not mentally at your best. Make time for you, buy yourself things, go out, do regular errands without kids or just be alone with yourself. Just because you have a kid, your life shouldn’t stop.

Black Maternal Health week (April 11-17), founded and led by the Black Mamas Matter Alliance.


Life & Style – Black America Web


6 Black women freelancers share what it takes to protect their mental health in the gig economy

6 Black women freelancers share what it takes to protect their mental health in the gig economy

6 Black women freelancers share what it takes to protect their mental health in the gig economy

In “I Rise,” a series from HelloGiggles, Black women writers examine Black women’s mental health from every angle—from what it takes to access treatment, to the exchange of trauma across generations. We hope this series arms women with information and power, and opens up more space for this important conversation to take place.

It’s no secret that we live in a gig economy and that more industries have started to rely on freelancers heavily, if not entirely, to keep organizations afloat. According to the Freelancing in America 2018 study, 56.7 million Americans are freelancers, and 64% of freelance work is being done online.

Freelancers are afforded a certain level of control over their schedules and projects, certainly more than traditional employees. But with that also comes instability, since freelancers are treated as independent contractors without the same protections as salaried employees. In fact, freelancers frequently struggle to secure affordable health care and enough work to make a decent living, and many have to follow up repeatedly with clients to be paid on time, if at all.

The uncertainty that comes with living the freelance life can be stressful at best and negatively impact your mental health at worst, even more so if you’re a marginalized writer. Black women and femme freelance writers have a wealth of knowledge when it comes to culture, but so often get tapped merely to comment on or react to instances of trauma and oppression. In addition to having to perform that kind of emotional labor, Black women and femme freelance writers never see the same rates of pay as their white counterparts.

To help Black freelancers lay the groundwork for better emotional and mental health, HelloGiggles spoke to six Black women writers about how freelancing has impacted their mental health and self-care, what it’s like to tell their most difficult stories, and how the media industry can be more supportive. 

“I’m thinking of finding other work because of the way working as a freelancer has affected me. Working as a writer has made me more anxious, and I’m annoyingly glued to my phone and computer. I’ve been having trouble being present and connected to my surroundings. 

[For self-care,] sometimes I don’t write a single word for days. It feels like I’m being lazy, but I know that’s necessary for me. I don’t like when the days and stories run together; I try to approach each one with a fresh mind, new ideas, and details. I also do small things, like wake up and immediately shower, instead of sitting on my phone for 30 minutes. It helps.

I would like for us to be paid more. I also would like for everyone to be given more freedom. Sometimes stories are cyclical and contrived, because editors know they’ll get clicks or because they don’t know what kinds of pieces are really important to Black audiences. It’s not right.”

Brooklyn White, freelance writer and artist

“[Freelancing is] exhausting. I’ve been moving nonstop and think about work all times of the day. Basically, my work-life balance is non-existent.

I need to be more proactive about [my mental health]. But I’m afraid if I stop to think of myself, I’ll miss out on work.

My most difficult stories relate to the fears I have about raising Black children in the midwest. They aren’t hypothetical concepts, like many of the other topics I cover. They are everyday struggles.

I don’t want to be a ‘go-to’ for stories exclusively during ‘Black times’ of the year. I’m a multi-dynamic individual with a wide range of views. My Black identity is just one of many aspects of what I can cover.”

— Ambreia Meadows-Fernandez, health care journalist and content strategist

“Freelancing has had a massive impact on my mental health. The fluctuation of it, the constant hustling—this can all be detrimental to my mental health. As such, it’s taught me to make tending to my mental health much more of a priority than it would be if I had a ‘traditional’ job.

Radical self-care and tending to my mental health looks like many things. Day to day, it means staying on top of my to-do lists for tasks, tracking my budgeting/spending/invoicing daily, and limiting my social media time. I tend to do best with having set rules regarding my social media at the beginning and end of the day (I try not to take my phone off airplane mode for the first hour I’m awake, and get off social media by 10 p.m. to give me time for my nighttime routine). But self-care also means prioritizing time to take care of my body: stretching, drinking water, doing non-work/hustle-related things that get me reconnected back to myself after a long week.

I’ve recently begun talking more about my chronic pain, and I still find it challenging to intellectualize what I’m experiencing and my relationship to it because, well, I’m still sorting through it all. I want to honor the space that I need to sit with things for myself first before sharing them with the world, and I try not to let myself get too caught up in that pressure [to write about my personal life].

Above all else, I want us to be paid what we are worth from the jump. Too many Black women and femme writers expend so much energy to be paid, and most of the time, we end up getting a fraction of what white writers in our fields [receive]. I provide a lot of labor in my work as a freelance writer and sex educator, and many people will only count a fraction of that work as ‘billable.’ But that needs to change. I want Black women and femme writers to have their rates respected, and be paid what we deserve from the beginning instead of having to fight so hard for it.”

Cameron Glover, freelance writer, podcaster, and sex educator

“Being a freelance writer is rewarding because I get to write from a place of passion as opposed to being shoved a topic/beat and expected to write well about something I couldn’t care less about or have no connection to. I get to craft something that’s near and dear to my heart and share it with the world. However, digital spaces are increasingly click-centered, so the pressure to pull millions of hits can be draining. It can be defeating to not meet a click goal or see/hear ANY response to something you poured yourself into. This has caused me a bit of anxiety and I’ve procrastinated with some of my work, fearing not being able to do a good job. And isn’t that wild? A good job is now defined by the tap of a finger, not the depth, breadth, vulnerability, research necessary to the craft.

Lately I’m starting my days free of internet, social media, or contact with anyone outside of my house. I used to check my emails and social media as soon as I woke up at 6:30 a.m. As a Black woman, that learned lack of boundaries to try to be all things to all people made me feel as though I was always treading water, just about to drown. Now, I’m practicing waking up with a prayer, a scripture, my journal, and some tea. I value what I do, but I’m not a brain surgeon. No one will die if I don’t respond to emails before 10 a.m. Letting my ego take her rest has been the most radical form of self-care. It frees me to be grateful, calm, and increasingly creative.

I felt compelled to write about getting fired from a job that just wasn’t right for me. We talk about vulnerability and authenticity a lot these days, but only a handful of us are really willing to be honest about the less-than-ideal slices of our lives. I didn’t want to be seen as a failure. Again, my ego popped up, terrified of taking that kind of hit. But in actuality, it was the most satisfying thing. It highlighted the uselessness of shame and gifted me the opportunity to build community with incredible people. It got a great dialogue going about what it means to follow the path that’s meant for you instead of trying to fold and mold yourself into a box that makes everyone else comfortable with you.

Black women’s experiences are varied, our expertise and interests are vast. It’s crazy to me that we must keep reminding the world of this. We embody a spectrum that too few care to call to the table. They want the monolith that gets clicks and sells papers and makes for edgy headlines and neat little obligation-filling-yet-ineffective diversity campaigns. I’m interested and invested in our invitation to actual conversations and not just the commodification of our ideas and creative expression.”

Ashley Hobbs, freelance writer, director, and creative producer

“I was a freelancer for two years. In the 24-hour news cycle, it was a constant churn and burn of competing headlines and chasing late payments. I had to take time off indefinitely.

During my hiatus, I discovered yoga and wellness. I got certified as a teacher and use my Instagram as my creative outlet.

As a freelance writer, it often felt like the only way to get greenlit was to share a really deeply racialized trauma story. This was often tied to a current event, so it was like always reopening a fresh wound.

It is my hope that Black women will be able to write about whatever they want and all of our stories will be heard. Equal treatment can only come from sharing more of our stories unrelated to trauma or to at least offer more agency in the stories we choose to share.”

Jagger Blaec, freelance writer and yoga instructor

“Being a freelancer is unstable, particularly financially. This impacts my mental health because if my pitch isn’t picked up, I don’t get paid, therefore I cannot seek out the care that I need around my mental health.

I don’t tend to my mental health enough. I put my job and getting paid first, and if I have the time and resources, then I will practice self-care and tend to my mental health. Though I can write about and acknowledge how necessary it is to our communities, it is difficult for me to put into practice, mostly due to lack of stability as a freelancer.

One of the most difficult stories to tell was one I wrote about my relationship with my mother, who is white, and the labor that I have to perform to educate her as her Black daughter. I was fearful of this story painting her in a negative light, and how I could tell it without feeling like I was exposing all of her faults, while still being honest to myself and telling my truth.

I want to see us holding editor positions, creative director, editor-in-chief, etc., not just freelance positions. Publications are quick to ask for our stories, but never want us holding the positions of power. They want our labor and creativity to get them revenue, but will never pay us what we deserve. I want to see us at every level in the journalism industry.”

Dominique Norman, freelance writer, fashion activist, higher education professional

The post 6 Black women freelancers share what it takes to protect their mental health in the gig economy appeared first on HelloGiggles.



If You Share A Bed, You Should Share Financial Responsibility: Here’s Why

Earlier this month, the New York Times highlighted a study published in the Journal of Consumer Research that shines further light on a problem many couples face: how to distribute responsibility for finances. The study’s author discovered that when couples divide money management unequally, the person taking a less active role is putting themselves at a financial literacy disadvantage over time.


While such a division of labor may seem convenient, it comes at a cost. The authors of the study found that “people generally develop expertise on a “need to know” basis—they pay attention to what they think they need to know, when they think they need to know it—and that the need to know is at least partly determined by one’s social relationships.”

Simply put, when one partner is the money person, that person continues to grow and hone their financial literacy. At the same time, the other person doesn’t develop and maintain the same degree of knowledge about their household financial management. This results in a financial literacy – and financial confidence – gap that grows over time.

A Fidelity survey supports this finding. Among respondents who were married or in a long-term committed relationship, 93 percent of those who said they had primary financial responsibility in their household said they were confident managing money, while just 52 percent of the less involved partners said they would be confident doing so.


Yes. Over half of respondents in numerous surveys reported deferring to their better half when it comes to money. And women are more likely to step back from managing long-term household financial decisions – retirement accounts, mortgages, and insurance – even as we tend to be responsible for day-to-day purchases.

A UBS survey last year found that 56% of married women leave key financial decisions to their husband. Given that women have a longer life expectancy than men, this is especially problematic. And among younger generations, the trend is actually getting worse! The same UBS survey found that 61% of millennial women reported leaving financial decisions to their partner compared with just over half (54%) of women from older generations.


One of the best ways to ensure you are both engaged in your joint finances is to have a shared financial plan that outlines your long-term vision. Discussing what you want to prioritize – buying a house, your retirement, your children’s education – and putting it on paper incentivizes each of you to be invested in achieving these goals.

You should also develop a joint budget each year that is benchmarked to this plan. Second, set aside time each month to review your shared financial accounts and assets, and make any necessary adjustments or decisions jointly. If you have shared goals and financial responsibilities, you will both have more peace of mind.



Life & Style – Black America Web


Mid-Level Job Application Tips: Share Your Best Advice for Mid-Levels!

Ladies, what are your best mid-level job application tips — for when you’re not quite fresh out of school but you’re not so senior that they’re knocking on your door? Do you have different tips if you’re applying online for mid-level jobs vs. applying more directly for a mid-level position? What are the best things you’ve learned from mid-level recruiters?

Something that’s always interesting to me is how in college and grad school, there is this huge emphasis on job application skills — writing cover letters or requests for informational interviews, tweaking your resume to be elegantly phrased, impressive, yet concise — and a lot of guidance around following up for job applications, like when to check in, what to say in follow-up messages, and so forth. Then, the education kind of stops, unless you seek it out by working with your alumni career office, a career coach, or an executive recruiter. But that’s where the trouble is, I think — I don’t think mid-levels can necessarily use the same job application tips that they learned in college or grad school. 

So let’s talk, ladies — how do you think applying for a job changes as you rise in seniority? What tips and habits do you still use after the initial college/grad school career fair — and what have you adapted and changed as you’ve gotten older? Readers who are really senior and have seen it all, how do you think basic job application advice changes as you climb the corporate ladder? (Another interesting question — how many stages of your career/job application process do you expect to go through? If you’re 5 years out of school are you “mid-level” or would you call it something else? A lot of the “further reading” posts below seem to define “mid-level professional” as someone 45-50 or older, whereas I think the phrase “mid-career” might apply better there…)

Further Reading:

  • Here’s What a Mid-Level Professional’s Resume Should Look Like [The Ladders]
  • How to Job Search as a Mid Level Career Candidate [The Balance]
  • How to Make a Great Resume for a Mid-Level Professional [Top Resume]
  • 15 Tips For Finding a Job At Every Stage Of Your Career [Glassdoor]
  • 6 Tips for Midcareer Job Seekers [Bankrate]
  • Correcting the 5 Most Common Mistakes Mid-Level Job Seekers Make [Forbes]

We asked the readers: what are your best job application tips for mid-levels? After all there is a TON of advice out there with job application tips when you're graduating college, grad school or law school, and a ton of support services -- but once you've been out of school for 5-10 years that same advice doesn't totally apply. Fun discussion among the readers about when to move your education to the bottom of your resume, how many pages a mid-level's resume should have, and more.

The post Mid-Level Job Application Tips: Share Your Best Advice for Mid-Levels! appeared first on


Sony announces first-ever share buyback, stock rises 5 percent

Sony Corp announced on Friday a share buyback of 100 billion yen ($ 910 million) – its first ever aimed at boosting shareholder returns – sending the Japanese electronics and entertainment company’s shares up more than 5 percent.

Reuters: Business News


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Share the Wear to Make Your Favourites Last Longer

Over time, wardrobe items will tear, pill, scuff, snag, stretch, fade and get stains. Laundering an item weakens the fibres, changes the fit, and dulls the colour. Items were made to be worn, but I do want my favourite items to look pristine for longer. So I make a point of “sharing the wear”. Here are three ways to do that.

More Items in Rotation

If you spread the wear evenly, then the items in a larger functional wardrobe will take longer to wear out. This isn’t so much about having a large wardrobe as it is about ensuring that you purchase items that are going to be worn. A dysfunctional wardrobe with many wardrobe orphans can make even a large wardrobe feel small. Conversely, a modest size wardrobe can feel large if the items were bought strategically.

Multiples of Similar Items

When you have multiples of similar items in rotation, they will all look less worn over time. These can be wardrobe essentials, wardrobe basics, completers, or statement pieces. For example, simple white footwear across styles that span the seasons are a wardrobe essential for my style. They are workhorses and I wear them many times in a week. The key is that I have many pairs of white booties, loafers, flats and sandals, which keeps them looking fresh, crisp and less scuffed over the years. If I had one pair of white boots that I walked in all season, they’d be battered after three months.

I also have a large collection of outerwear and handbags, and the items have held up really well. Some of my almost ten year old coats and bags look fairly new because I swap out the look very frequently, which shares the wear. If you sport the same bag all year, and the same pair of boots all season, they’re going to look worn fast.

Pick the Right Item from the Pile

When you have many pairs of panties, bras, socks, camisoles, tees, PJs, turtlenecks, thermals, sweatpants, workout tops, leggings and the like, it’s easy to keep on wearing and laundering the same ones instead of sharing the wear across the range. Put freshly laundered items at the bottom of the pile, or deliberately reach for items that are further down.

This isn’t essential. You might prefer your bags, jeans, sweats, leather jackets, and footwear to look worn because you like a rough-around-the-edges vibe. Maybe you’d prefer to have a small, tight wardrobe that you replace more frequently to prevent outfit boredom. Or maybe you’re fine for some items to look worn and others to look pristine.

I prefer my items to wear evenly across my wardrobe so I can enjoy my favourite items for longer. Sharing the wear helps me to do this.



People Share Why They Don’t Use Financial Advisers; Some Alternative Ways to Get Financial Help

Many people just do not want to meet with a financial adviser despite the fact that using one may provide numerous financial advantages. Financial advisers provide objectivity of financial situations and give advice to help establish a more secure financial position.

A few personal finance professionals, authors, teachers and bloggers, from the Elevate Community, dedicated to uplifting people of color financially, shared their perspectives:

“Just Not Ready”

Just like weight loss, financial wellness is one of the top three new year resolutions and personal goals. Most people generally know what to do to improve their financial situation, but some are just not ready to do it.

“We like comfort!” says Andre Albritton of The Millennials Next Door. “A financial adviser will give recommendations outside of our comfort zone which can be a frightening experience.”

Money mantras like “save more and spend less” and “pay yourself first” have been stated by every financial expert. The reality is if a person is not mentally ready, they will not execute any plan.


On television, rich and famous people seem to be the only ones talking about meeting with financial advisers. This creates the perception that it takes thousands or millions of dollars to work with a financial adviser. The consumers living paycheck to paycheck with minimal or no assets (like a home, investments, etc.) may presume it is too expensive to meet with a financial adviser.

Many middle-class Americans are working hard to pay their bills and make ends meet. Paying to meet with a financial adviser may seem premature or unrealistic.


“People put off seeing a financial adviser for the same reason they avoid going to the doctor or dentist” shares Alfred Edmond Jr., BLACK ENTERPRISE Your Money Your Life Podcast host and co-author of Loving in the Grownzone. “They don’t want to deal with the choices, remedies, or lifestyle changes that will likely be necessary to improve their condition.”

People that practice avoidance in the hope that the problems will go away, or correct itself will deny the problem, and chose not to deal with the financial situation. Unfortunately, avoiding the dis-ease in the bank account will leave a person vulnerable to more financial hardships.

“People are embarrassed about their current (financial) situation and believe their choices got them in that predicament” explains Atiya Brown of Live Financially Savvy Podcast. “Since they don’t know the extent, they may tend to ignore and avoid.”


Almost 10 years ago, my pride almost put me in the poor house. I remember being ashamed to admit my major money mistakes and felt like a failure. I locked myself in a self-inflicted private prison of shame.

People suffer in silence because of their pride and the shame they feel because of making money mistakes. Making the decision to let go of the shame and ask for guidance will help to release the guilt.

Product Pushers

Julien Saunders of rich & REGULAR states, “Some financial advisers have a tendency to be pushy. Although well-intended, some (financial advisers) can make a person feel pressured. Consumers must fully understand the implications, alternatives, or cost to them as the investor.”

Some financial advisers are perceived as product pushers. Product pushing financial professionals turn off and scare away many consumers. Even though consumers know that financial advisers sell products, they do not want to feel pressured into purchasing products they don’t understand.

Stranger Danger

People do business with people they like, know, and trust. Sharing secret financial skeletons with  someone you don’t know can be extremely uncomfortable. It is even more frightening to give control of your money and assets to that stranger.

Patrina K. Dixon of It’$ My Money says, “Some people have trust issues. Therefore, if they do not trust the financial advisor, they will not be safe to share relevant information the adviser may need to assist the client.


Some Alternative Options to Using Financial Advisers 

Many are not ready for the financial commitment to meet or work with a financial adviser. Here are some alternative options and resources to help you “start where you are.”

Financial Blogs and Podcasts

Financial blogs are an excellent resource for free money tips and strategies. Here are a few blogs and podcasts to check out.

Tanya Rapley’s My Fab Finance Blog teaches millennial women of color how to regain control of their finances, overcome financial challenges, and pay off debt.

Talaat and Tai McNeely host the His And Her Money Podcast. Their podcast and blog aim to help married couples reach their financial goals together.

Marsha Barnes’ The Finance Bar Blog connects individuals to their financial wellness. She offers one-on-one coaching and an app that shows where your money is going.

Online Financial Tribes

John Hope Bryant, the founder of Operation Hope stated, “If you hang around nine broke people, you will be the tenth.” Connecting with people who have similar financial goals or have achieved the success desired is essential to financial success. Here are a few online financial tribes to check out.

The Live Richer Academy founded by Tiffany Aliche, who is known as The Budgetnista, is a membership-based online platform that offers courses designed to help participants take their finances to the next level.

Founded by Sandy Smith, of Yes I Am Cheap blog, Hustle Crew is a private Facebook group community that provides resources on entrepreneurship and starting a side hustle.

Financial Coaches

Financial coaches educate clients on the basics of money and credit management. They help their clients establish financial goals and create a customized plan to reach those goals. Financial coaches act as accountability partners to encourage and challenge their clients to success.

Financial coaching services range free through a non-profit programs to a few hundred dollars per hour to work with popular financial coaches privately.

Black Enterprise Contributors Network 

The post People Share Why They Don’t Use Financial Advisers; Some Alternative Ways to Get Financial Help appeared first on Black Enterprise.

Money | Black Enterprise


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Kendall Jenner to Share Personal ‘Raw Story’ to Help People, Kris Announces

Kendall Jenner is hoping to connect with people and help them by sharing a very personal story about herself … but it’s a mystery what that is for now. Kris Jenner announced Saturday her “brave and vulnerable” daughter will be revealing the story…


Patients share same-day triple transplant bond

Associated Press

SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN: -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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Blue Apron Surges 22%, Back Above $1 a Share, After Partnering With Weight Watchers

A timely partnership with Weight Watchers International is fattening up Blue Apron’s market cap days after its stock price tumbled below $ 1 a share.

Blue Apron’s stock surged 22% Friday, rising back above the $ 1 a share level for the first time since Dec. 18. That level not only carries a symbolic meaning for investors–below it, an issue is considered a penny stock, a designation that deters some shareholders–but the New York Stock Exchange will often delist stocks that trade below $ 1 a share for more than 30 days.

The rebound in Blue Apron’s stock began on Dec. 21, when the company announced it would partner with Weight Watchers, which now goes by the name WW Inc., to deliver meal kits based on WW Freestyle recipes. The new meal kits–which include recipes like Crispy Baked Chicken, Garlic Shrimp, and Sweet Potato Chile–became available on Dec. 26, one week before many people set New Year’s resolutions for healthier diets.

Blue Apron’s stock hit a record low of 65 cents a share around the time the partnership was announced. As publications like the Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times began writing stories about the new menu this week, the stock continued to rise.

As of Friday’s close, Blue Apron shares had risen to $ 1.12 a share, or 73% above its low this month. The company remains 89% below its $ 10 a share offering price. This week’s rebound underscores the potential opportunities ahead for the company. Some analysts have said an acquisition by a major grocery chain like Walmart could also help improve access to Blue Apron’s meal kits.


SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN: -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


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


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!

Discord Store Will Grants Developers 90% Revenue Share Starting in 2019

The video game online store wars are officially in full swing, with Discord announcing Friday morning that it is opening up its online store with 90% of all revenue going to gamer makers starting in 2019. The news comes on the heels of Epic Games own announcement last week that it was launching the Epic […]



CRH 9-month EBITDA Rises; Commences Phase 3 Of Share Buyback Program

CRH Plc. (CRH, CRH.L), a building materials group, reported Tuesday that for the nine-month period ended 30 September 2018, EBITDA, a key earnings metric, rose 8 percent to 2.5 billion euros from 2.3 billion euros in the year-ago period. Like-for-like EBITDA rose 2 percent.
RTT – Earnings


Alstom H1 Net Income Group Share Rises; Sales Up 23% On Organic Basis

Alstom (AOMFF.PK, ALS.L) reported first-half net income (Group share) at 563 million euros compared to 177 million euros, prior year. The company noted that the net income (Group share) included an exceptional net income from discontinued operations of 245 million euros, for the quarter. Net profit from continuing operations to equity holders of the parent increased to 318 million euros from 169 million euros, prior year. Adjusted EBIT was 285 million euros corresponding to 7.1% margin in first half 2018/19, compared to 180 million euros corresponding 5.4% margin the previous year. The company said the improvement was driven by a significant volume increase and on-going initiatives for operational excellence, while portfolio mix remained stable.
RTT – Earnings


Chad and Michelle Share Their (Different) Views on Gender Roles | Chad Loves Michelle | OWN


SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN: -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


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


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!

Health privacy advocates worry DeepMind will break its promise not to share health data with Google

DeepMind Health says that it will be absorbed into Google Health, but it still won't be sharing patient health information with its parent company. Its critics remain concerned.
Health and Science


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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!

Increase Your Market Share: How to Woo Homeowners That Have Yet to be Influenced

More than 80% of homeowners request quotes before they know who they want to work with or the product brand they prefer. If you’re hyper-focused on increasing your own SEO and brand awareness, you’re missing out on a larger reach of homeowners that have yet to be influenced.

By understanding homeowners’ consumer behavior, you’ll be able to achieve the competitive edge and increase your market share. Watch our webinar recording here to learn ways your business can increase your market share such as:

  • Insights into Modernize’s proprietary homeowner survey data,
  • Uncovering homeowner buying trends,
  • Tactics to case a wider net by leveraging homeowner consumer behavior,
  • Digital marketing tips and tricks for today’s residential home improvement companies.

To capture a piece of the 1.5 million homeowners that find their contractor through Modernize each year, contact us here!

The post Increase Your Market Share: How to Woo Homeowners That Have Yet to be Influenced appeared first on Modernize.



From Ford to Volkswagen, rivals become frenemies to share the cost of building self-driving cars

The sheer cost and technological burden of developing self-driving cars, electric vehicles and other advancements has companies that have historically been fierce competitors becoming, at the very least, frenemies. 
Top News & Analysis


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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!

Workers urge Amazon boss to restore share schemes

Dozens of UK Amazon warehouse workers have sent emails directly to Jeff Bezos urging him to restore their employee share and incentive schemes, which they say have been cut in order to fund a promised pay rise.
Tech News – Latest Technology and Gadget News | Sky News


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Common, Regina Hall, and Russell Hornsby Share Lessons from ‘The Hate U Give’

Based on the book by Angie Thomas, the new film The Hate U Give shares the perspective of a teenaged black girl torn between two worlds. The novel’s film adaption speaks to a wide range of audiences and experiences as it addresses the challenges of 16-year old Starr Carter. Starr’s problems cross boundaries and provide lessons that can be applied to our personal and professional lives as it relates to our diverse and often polarizing political environment.

The film addresses myriad topics such as code-switching, covering, discrimination, diversity, police brutality, gun violence, trauma, voting, and activism. Film director George Tillman and the cast addressed these issues at a recent forum sponsored by the 48th Annual Legislative ConferenceCongresswoman Val Demings of Florida’s 10th District, and the Multicultural Media Correspondents Association (MMCA). Actress Regina Hall, actor Russell Hornsby, and hip-hop artist/actor/activist Common also provided valuable insight around a plethora of timely themes found within the emotionally charged film.

The Hate U Give

Russell Hornsby, Regina Hall, and Common (Photo Credit: Patricia McDougall Photography)

Code-Switching in The Hate U Give 

Code-switching is the practice of switching between languages or dialects in conversation to suit the setting. Starr is continually switching between two worlds; the poor, predominantly black neighborhood where she lives and the wealthy, mostly white prep school she attends. The uneasy balance between these worlds is soon shattered when she witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend at the hands of a police officer. Facing pressure from all sides of the community, we witness Starr struggling with communication issues we often face in our daily work lives, as we determine the suitable language and vernacular to communicate with colleagues. Starr must find her voice and decide to stand up for what is right.

‘Covering’ and Other Themes 

Covering is the act of downplaying or hiding certain aspects of yourself so as not to appear different. The Deloitte University Leadership Center for Inclusion report, Uncovering Talent, reveals that 61% of all employees “cover” their identities in some way by downplaying specific attributes, for fear of drawing unwanted attention or making others uncomfortable. Too often, covering does not provide the positive consequences we hope to achieve and is often detrimental to our self-esteem and performance. Taking cues from Starr, we understand covering is unhealthy and does not provide the results we hope for. Eventually, we remove the veil as the pressure to hide becomes unbearable and we show up as our authentic selves.

Starr encounters and manages blatant discrimination and negative treatment based on her race throughout the film. Many workplaces are plagued with discrimination and the lack of opportunities for people of color. In fact, the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced 84,254 workplace discrimination charges were filed with the agency nationwide in 2017. By recognizing a lack of diversity in the workplace, we can aim to ensure people of color are in decision-making roles with decision-making power. Hornsby said it best when he stated, “the diverse stories we are able to tell from a black perspective are stories that are from opportunities. We show that we can do the work. We show that we are capable. We show that we are talented. We just need to have an opportunity.” Providing opportunities is a step toward combatting discrimination.

There is not one character in The Hate U Give exempt from some level of trauma based on events in the film. In the same way, we are not exempt from the trauma we experience directly or indirectly in daily life. According to studies, 66% of the general population has been traumatized at some point. Eighty percent of workers feel stressed on the job, and approximately 1 million workers are absent each day due to stress. It is essential to be aware that the incidents that occur in The Hate U Give are not limited to the movies but that we are encountering people who have these experiences in our professional lives on a daily basis. Empathy and sensitivity to the experience of others are needed more than ever in our professional and personal lives.


When discussing The Hate U Give, Hall eloquently explained how images reflect who we are, how we are perceived, and how we are received in the world: “Those images shape how the world is shaped and affects us when we apply for jobs.” When asked about diversity and his role in the film, Common explained how art gives us more insight into life. “Every time I get a new character, I start to understand human beings more. That’s why I want to play characters that are not like me, and that do not think like I think,” he expressed. Being exposed to people, experiences, and places that are not like us or that are different from our everyday lives is the key to diversity. Common and the cast agreed that when it comes to diversity we have a long way to go, but it is important to acknowledge the growth and recognize there are people on the front lines who are moving forward and being leaders in the area of diversity.

The Hate U Give reminds us that it is not only about diversity of color and gender, but also diversity in thought. As art imitates life, we continue to recognize that people come from all walks of life and that we are not monolithic as a people.  As Hornby expressed, “There is no right or wrong, there is only truth.”  As business owners and professionals, we must join efforts with organizations like the MMCA to ignite and sustain a call to truth and action that results in a significant increase in diverse representation in all areas of industry. At the same time, we must be keenly aware of the effect the lack of diversity and other factors have on our health and our productivity. The Hate U Give is a powerful tool that can be used to continue the dialogue and to challenge misconceptions that prevent progress.

The Hate U Give is in select theaters on Oct. 5 and everywhere on Oct. 19.




The post Common, Regina Hall, and Russell Hornsby Share Lessons from ‘The Hate U Give’ appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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