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What is a 1099 Employee?


Both business owners and employees should know the differences between W2 and 1099 workers. Each comes with pros and cons to consider when looking for work or to hire someone.

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As an employer, you might be wondering whether you should hire a W2 or 1099 employee. W2 and 1099 forms are the different kinds of tax forms used to process income taxes and other work-related taxes.


Which employee type you choose will primarily affect the way your company does taxes, but there are some other important differences to consider as well.


Understand the Difference Between 1099 vs W2 Employees


The primary difference between 1099 vs W2 employees is the different tax forms they each fill out. But there are other important differences between the two as well.


Tax Forms


The terms W2 and 1099 refer to two different kinds of tax forms that workers and employers use each year. Employers have to fill out tax forms each year for income tax and any other taxes that apply to their workers or their business. People who work for themselves have to handle these taxes on their own with a 1099 tax form.


Employees who need a W2 tax form are employees of the company. They work directly for a specific business. The company they work under puts together their W2 tax forms and sends the IRS the appropriate tax funds each year.


Workers who need a 1099 tax form, work for themselves instead of working for a company. This means they have to do their own income taxes each year and they do this by filling out a 1099 tax form.


Work Location


Because W2 employees work for a specific business they usually end up working on location. This means working at the store, at the worksite, or in the office.


Meanwhile, 1099 workers have to find their own workspace. This means that they are in charge of providing themselves with computers, desks, chairs, and whatever else they might need in order to do their job.




The way that different types of workers get paid is also different. W2 workers always get paid from the same company, while 1099 workers get paid from whoever they are currently working for.


Since 1099 workers are contract workers, they get paid per contract and often end up working for multiple different companies. This can also mean that contract workers have more sporadic pay while regular employees can often expect more stable pay.


What is a W2 Employee?


A W2 employee is someone who is hired as a full or part-time worker for a business. That company then needs to pay taxes for each employee they hire. Those taxes get filed using W2 forms.


What is a 1099 Employee?


1099 employees are contract workers that file their own income tax forms at the end of each year. They work independently from the company’s they work for and have to manage their own taxes and benefits.


1099 employees are self-employed workers. They can also be referred to as independent contractors or contract workers. This type of self-employed worker usually works in an independent trade as their own boss.


What Qualifies as a 1099 Employee?


1099 employees can work in many different kinds of professional fields. Some examples of common types of 1099 employees include:

  • Real Estate Agents
  • Accountants
  • Contractors
  • Writers
  • Photographers
  • Videographers
  • Graphic Designers
  • Editors
  • Web Developers
  • Programmers


1099 Employee Rights


Self-employed workers have specific employee rights they need to remember. Because they are self-employed, they have to be in charge of their own employee rights since they aren’t a part of a business’s HR department.

  • Right to schedule their own work hours
  • Right to decide where they do their work
  • Right to set your own pay rates
  • Right to an official contract when taking on a new job
  • Protection of intellectual property


This is why contracts are especially important for contract workers. The contract will be the main way contractors can protect themselves professionally and make sure their terms are met at each new job they take on.


1099 Employee Benefits


Company’s can get a lot of benefits from hiring a contract employee rather than hiring an in-house employee.


For one, companies that use contract workers don’t have to pay income taxes, medicare taxes, unemployment taxes, or pay social security for each contract worker they hire. Instead, contract workers have to manage those taxes on their own.


By hiring contract employees, companies can potentially save lots of money while still getting exceptional work done.


Contract employees also experience lots of benefits. They don’t have to work in the same office every day and they don’t have to work during hours that someone else sets. Overall, 1099 employees benefit from more flexibility in their work and the way they handle their own taxes.


What is a 1099 Employee’s Rules?


Independent contractors make their own employee rules. They’ll often outline any of the rules or guidelines they want on a project in the contract they write up for the person or business hiring them.


Setting these rules in writing in a contract is a good idea because it lets everyone know exactly what is expected of them.


Can you Collect Unemployment if you are a 1099 Employee?


1099 employees are not eligible for unemployment. In order to be eligible for unemployment, you or the company you work for must pay taxes that go toward the unemployment insurance fund.


Since independent contractors don’t work for a company that pays taxes and instead work for themselves, they aren’t eligible for unemployment benefits.


Advantages of Being a 1099 Employee


In 2014, there were about 91 million 1099 employees. There are many self-employed workers in the world and they choose to work this way for a reason. Working for yourself comes with a lot of awesome perks.


Flexible Hours


As a self-employed worker, you get to determine your own hours. If you want to work from 9:00am to 5:00pm each day you can. You can also work from 5:00pm to 1:00am if you want! Your hours are completely up to you.


You can also decide not to clock hours for your work and instead base your pay on completed projects and tasks. It’s all up to you because you are the boss.


Decide Your Own Pay


When you’re the boss, you get to decide everything. That includes how much you get paid and when you deserve a raise. You do have to consider hireability when deciding how much to charge for your work.


File Your Own Taxes


Because you file your own taxes each month, you now have the power to manage your own tax situation and potentially save a lot of money.


Self-employed workers can also be eligible for special tax exemptions that can help you save even more on taxes each year.


More Work Variety


Working for lots of different people can help work be way less boring. Each project you take on will be different from the last, even if the work is similar. This can help keep you engaged and interested in the work you do so you don’t have to fight back job burnout as much as you might working for one company alone.


Work Remotely


Contract workers sometimes have to work on-site. Real Estate Agents will have to travel to different houses to show clients or photographers have to be on-location to take photos.


But other than those types of instances, people who are self-employed get to work in their own personal space. Working remotely can be great, especially when you customize and personalize your workspace.


Some independent contractors will also rent their own office space. So just because you work on your own, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on going to a set office location each day if you want to.


No Earning Limits


When you work for yourself there are no limits to how much you can earn.


As a hired employee, you might have a cap on how much you get paid each month or how many hours you’re allowed to work each week. As a 1099 employee, you don’t have this limit. Instead you can work as much as you want and subsequently earn as much as you want.


Disadvantages of Being a 1099 Employee


Everything that has pros also comes with some cons. Here are a few of the disadvantages you’ll need to weigh before deciding to become a 1099 employee.


More Tax Filing


You have to keep up with taxes on your own each month, otherwise, it’ll accumulate and you’ll owe a lot when tax season comes around. Having to file your own taxes each month can be burdensome and time-consuming.


Find Your Own Work


You have to advertise your products and services in order to find work. This means that your work is subject to a certain amount of supply and demand.


This can make contract work less dependable than a regular job that promises a certain number of hours each week.


Unsteady Income


Income and work hours can be unsteady for someone who is self-employed. Your products might not sell or you might have trouble finding people to hire you for your services.


You might have periods where you get lots of work and other times where you don’t. This can make your income less stable than a regular job that promises a certain number of hours and pays on a regular basis.


No Employee Benefits


As someone who is self-employed, you have to take care of a lot on your own. Insurance and other employee benefits are some of the things you’ll have to handle on your own.


If you work for yourself, then you can take a vacation whenever you want. But you won’t technically have any paid vacation days or paid sick leave. You’ll also be in charge of your own healthcare and insurance whereas many regular jobs will connect their employees to healthcare and insurance programs.


Advantages of Hiring a 1099 Employee


As a business, it can be difficult to decide which is better—hiring an independent contractor or hiring an in-house employee. All of this depends on the work that needs to be done and your business.


Save Money


There are many ways your business can save money by hiring an independent worker. You don’t have to pay employee taxes for self-employed workers. Instead, you just pay them the fees they charge.


You also don’t have to provide employee benefits to someone who is self-employed. They also don’t need you to provide them with a workspace or materials to do their job.


Skip the New Hire Process


The process to get a new hire all situated at your business can be expensive and time-consuming. Skip this process altogether by hiring an independent contractor instead.


Change Services Easily


If you find you don’t like someone’s work, you can just not use their services again. But if you hire a new employee, you’ll have to formally fire them in order to replace them. With an independent contractor, you can just try someone new for the next project.


Disadvantages of Hiring a 1099 Employee


It’s not all good news for small business owners though. There are instances still where it would be better to hire a W2 worker instead of a 1099 employee.


Less Focus


There is a possibility that a freelancer’s time could be divided between other clients. They don’t only work for you which means they could be juggling many more projects at the same time they take yours on. This divide in their time and focus could mean lower work quality for your business or in the very least, longer completion times.


But if you hire an in-house employee, then you can see and work with them every day for easier and more frequent collaboration.


Less Control


You can make requests when forming a work agreement with a self-employed worker, but ultimately they are their own boss. This could give your business less control over a project.


How Check City Supports You and Your Business


Whether you are a small business or an independent contractor, Check City can help you with your financial needs.


Need Help Filing 1099?


At Check City, we can help you file your taxes all year round! At Check City, you can get your federal and state tax returns filed at any time of the year.


Check City has over 30 years of tax preparation service experience and requires no appointment. Come into a store at any time and our tax representatives will help you get your taxes done.


Go to Check City Tax Preparation Services.


Need Emergency Funding as a Business Owner?


Check City has financial services that help small business owners. If you are a small business owner in need of emergency funding then head on over to Check City to see our small business loan options.


Go to Payday Loans Online & Payday Advance Loans from Check City.


Loans For Self-Employed


Sometimes all you need is a small loan to keep afloat or get through a small financial setback. Payday loans are one of the more popular types of small loans you can get when you just need a little cash to see you through.


But if you’re self-employed, you might wonder what small loan options are available to you if you don’t have a steady paycheck for a payday loan. There are still loans for self-employed workers though, like a personal loan!


Go to Convenient and Affordable Personal Loans.


In Conclusion,


Different workers thrive under different conditions. If you love flexibility and being your own boss then becoming a 1099 employee might be the right choice for you. But if you thrive on structure and stability then becoming a W2 employee might be the better choice for you.


Likewise, there are pros and cons to hiring 1099 employees and W2 employees. With 1099 employees your company could save money, but with W2 employees you get the in-house time and attention your company might need.


Whether you’re a business owner looking to hire or a worker looking for a job, considering the advantages and disadvantages of 1099 employees can help you figure out your best options.


Mercatus Center | George Mason University. “Evaluating the Growth of the 1099 Workforce,” by Eli Dourado and Christopher Koopman.

15 Essential Skills for Your Resume

building a resume with job skills

It can be hard to pick skills for your resume. This comprehensive list of job skills will help you pick resume skills that will interest an employer.

Explore this Guide:


It’s important to have a list of job skills on your resume. This will help employers know what qualifications and talents you can bring to the job.


The key to having a good list of skills on a resume is to have a short story in mind for each skill that provides a perfect and easy to remember example of how you have used each of these skills in the past.


What are Soft Skills?


Soft skills are intangible skills that can cross over between any job. They include skills that help employees get along with and work well with one another.


Soft skills include things like the ability to work well with others, communicate effectively, or resolve conflict.


When an employer asks about soft skills, they want to know what you will be like to work with as a person and whether you’ll be a good fit for their work environment.


What are Hard Skills?


Hard skills are tangible skills that are specific to a job. They include required skills that an employee will need in order to perform their job. Hard skills are also sometimes referred to as technical skills.


Hard skills are knowledge, skills, and abilities that a job requires an employee to have. This can be anything from knowing how to use Microsoft Excel to knowing how to operate heavy machinery. It all depends on what that job will require you to do.


How to Include Skills on a Resume


On your resume, it’s a good idea to have a skills section outlining all of the hard and soft skills you have. After all your prior experience and qualifications are listed in the experience section, it can be hard to find room for job skills on a resume.


Many resumes include this section at the bottom or in a small section on the right-hand side of the resume page.


Read, “How to Write a Resume” to learn even more about how to create the perfect resume.


Job skills on a resume in a section at the bottom of the page might look something like this:


Technical Skills:

Microsoft Excel, Word, Adobe, InDesign


Soft Skills:

Team player, adaptable, organized, excellent time management


Skills for resume can also be found on the side of a resume page might favor bullet points in order to help the section fit neatly on the side of the page.


Technical Skills:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Adobe
  • InDesign


Soft Skills:

  • Team player
  • Adaptable
  • Organized
  • Excellent time management


Now there is the question of what order should hard and soft skills for a resume come in?


Since an employer will want to see if you can successfully perform the job or not first, it’s a good idea to list your technical, hard skills first.


These are also often the required skills found in the job description meaning that they are the exact skill sets the hiring manager is looking for.


*Resume Tip: print out a copy of your resume for yourself to take to interviews. Somewhere on your personal copy write a note for each skill to help you remember a short story or example that shows you have this skill.


Read more about Job Interview Tips, how to answer common Job Interview Questions to brush up on your job interviewing skills, and tips on Writing a Cover Letter.


During the interview, you can use these notes to help illustrate your skills to the employer, help them remember you easier with short, memorable stories, and prove to them that you do indeed have the skills you’ve listed. You can also include mentions of these examples and anecdotes in your cover letters.


Giving concrete examples of your key skills will help the interview process go smoothly and help the hiring decision lean in your favor.


Skill #1: Technical Skills


The resume skills employers are going to be the most interested in are the ones that mean you can do the job.


Being able to work well with others is really important, but if the job position relies heavily on being able to use a specific program that you’ve never heard of before, then your teamwork skills won’t help you.


Technical skills for a resume might include knowing how to use certain software, knowing how to code, or project management.


Technical skills for a resume could also include knowing how to operate machinery you would be expected to handle at a job. This could be anything from printers and copiers to forklifts and backhoes.


Other jobs might require knowledge of how to gather and interpret data. This could also then require some mathematical skills. If a job requires you have an in-depth knowledge of a specific field or topic, that could also be listed under your technical qualifications and skills on a resume.


Skill #2: Analytical Skills


Analytical skills fall along the same lines as critical thinking and problem-solving. Many jobs require the ability to think critically, analyze information, and make decisions based on this information.


As a soft skill, analytical skills can also demonstrate that you know how to find patterns, brainstorm, investigate, find solutions, recognize problems, and be observant.


Skill #3: Interpersonal Skills


What are interpersonal skills? Interpersonal skills refer to your people skills or your skills in successfully, peacefully, and productively interacting and working with others.


Some important building blocks to interpersonal skills are communication, emotional intelligence, maturity, listening, patience, tact, conflict resolution, and persuasion, just to name a few.


Too many interpersonal skills to count go into being an amiable coworker that your fellow employees and employer will enjoy working with.


When brainstorming what interpersonal skills you have, think about what makes you a great person to work with. Maybe you’re a really good listener or maybe you can easily resolve conflicts.


Skill #4: Leadership Skills


There are many different ideas about what it means to be a leader. There are also different leadership styles to consider.


Democratic Leaders seek input from each team member before making a decision.


Autocratic Leaders do not seek input from team members, but instead make their decisions alone.


Laissez-Faire Leaders allow their team members to make their own decisions instead of making decisions for them.


Strategic Leaders try to keep many variables in mind when making decisions. They strategize for the best outcomes while considering employees, executives, and the company’s best interest.


Transformational Leaders like to push the company and employees outside of their comfort zones. They like to incorporate new, transformational ideas to help the company and its employees grow and succeed through innovation.


Transactional Leaders reward their employees for the work they do. They like to use incentives to help employees feel motivated to do their jobs well.


Coach-Style Leaders see all of their team members as individuals with individual strengths and weaknesses to consider. They like to focus on each member of a team one at a time in order to nurture each team member’s individual strengths.


Bureaucratic Leaders like to do everything by the book. They always adhere to company policy and traditional practices. They greatly emphasize the rules, guidelines, and tradition.


There are pros and cons to each leadership style and different industries and companies will have their own leadership style preferences.


Regardless of your leadership style, be confident. Your sense of confidence will have a profound effect on your coworkers. When you appear confident, your coworkers and managers are more likely to trust and follow your lead.


Skill #5: Communication Skills


Be a communicator. When you communicate well, you create a sense of harmony and competence in your team and in your office.


Good communication is a valuable job skill that should be developed no matter where you are on your career path. It’s also a resume skill that virtually any employer will be glad to see you have.


Don’t forget to work on both nonverbal and verbal forms of communication in the workplace.


Nonverbal Communication


Includes things like your body language and demeanor. You can practice good nonverbal communication with good posture and being an engaged listener.


Nonverbal communication can also include things like corresponding via email or messaging platforms. There is a form of workplace etiquette and professionalism for each type of nonverbal communication that you want to have.


Verbal Communication


Verbal communication includes things like talking person-to-person, talking on the phone, or talking via virtual video calls.


Each industry and workplace will have an etiquette code to follow for verbal forms of communication. Here are a few tips on how to be a good communicator:

  • Be respectful
  • Be relevant
  • Be specific
  • Be focused


Skill #6: Problem Solving Skills


Be a problem solver. Employers look for workers who can work to solve all kinds of problems across job lines and be an active participant in the running of the business.


When you are willing to learn new expertise and solve problems that arise, you increase your level of knowledge and your value to the company.


The easiest way to solve almost any problem is to take the following steps:


Step 1: Understand the Problem


You can do this by defining the problem, listing all the obstacles and related variables, and defining the root cause of the problem.


Understand the whole picture so you aren’t missing any important details that may be the key to the solution.


Step 2: Reverse Engineer the Problem


Sometimes deconstructing the problem will help you find the root cause, which may be the key to the solution.


Also, thinking about things backward can give the new perspective necessary to see the solution.


Step 3: Communicate with the Team


There will probably be people and other departments that you’ll need to communicate with in order to understand the problem completely.


The knowledge these other people have could be the missing link you need to formulate the entire solution.


Skill #7: Teamwork


Be a team player! In almost every work environment you will have to work with others to some degree.


Being good at teamwork doesn’t necessarily come naturally either. That’s why it’s a skill for your resume that you can work on developing with practice and patience.


Employers want to create a productive and peaceful work environment where coworkers not only get along, but work well together. So when you demonstrate your ability to work with a team, you increase your attractiveness as an employee.


Working well with others also creates a sense of unity and helps productivity in the workplace.


Skill #8: Pressure and Stress Management


Work well under pressure. Today’s workplace can be full of stressors. When you develop a sense of calm amongst the chaos, you exponentially increase your ability to rise in the workplace.


There are some other basic stress-reducing practices you can use to handle the pressure and destress each day:


Get More Sleep


At the very least you need to be getting a full eight hours of sleep each night, maybe a little more. When you’re stressed you also need more sleep than normal to recuperate.


You’ll want to also make sure you are getting quality sleep by using the following tips:

  • Make your room cold.
  • Have plenty of blankets.
  • Go to bed and wake up at the same time.
  • Give yourself an extra half hour of falling asleep and waking up time.
  • Unwind before bed, relax, meditate, or drink some cold water.


Eat Healthy


Make sure you are eating healthy. Sometimes when you’re stressed you can lose your appetite, while other people’s response to stress is an increase in appetite.


You have to fuel your body with the nutrients it needs to keep up and keep running during times of sickness or stress. You have to give your insides a fighting chance by providing the right fuels.




Exercise is a good natural medicine for stress that can help increase happy hormones and release tension after a stressful day.


The average person needs about 30 minutes of physical activity each day. Use those 30 minutes to spend some time on yourself doing physical activities you love.


Prevent Burnout


What is job burnout? Job burnout is when the stress from a job becomes overpowering and causes extreme mental and physical fatigue.


Getting job burnout can greatly impact your ability to do your job well. It can also adversely impact your personal life and happiness.


Read more about what job burnout is and How to Prevent Job Burnout.


There are a lot of things you can do to prevent and treat burnout, but one thing that helps is to change things up. Changing your routines or taking a much needed vacation can be just the medicine you need to reach full capacity again.


Skill #9: How to Give Feedback


Sometimes your job will require you to give feedback to others. Knowing how to give and receive feedback effectively is an essential skill for your resume.


The whole point of giving feedback is that you want to see something improve. Whether it’s actions, an individual employee, or a project, you are simply invested in making something the best it can be. So your feedback needs to be helpful, effective, and clear.


Here are 4 quick steps to make sure you don’t leave someone more confused by your feedback, rather than giving them the insight and direction you intended.


What IS Working


First, acknowledge what is working. This isn’t just to make people feel good about what they are doing, or soften the blow of what you don’t like, though it can do these things too and that’s an added bonus.


But if people don’t know what is working then they might end up changing things they shouldn’t. Make sure they also know what is working.


What’s NOT Working


Then, talk about what isn’t working. This part of giving feedback is rather obvious. But remember to not let yourself make the interaction overly emotional or personal while giving feedback about what isn’t working.


Be Clear and Specific


Vague criticism is not helpful criticism. A subordinate or team member can’t improve if you are too ambiguous in an attempt to not hurt feelings.


For example, if a team member is working on a design, don’t just say, “It could be better.” Instead, figure out what specifically about it isn’t working. Is it the color? Is it the image they chose? Is it the font style? Be as specific as you can about what is and isn’t working.


Help Implement Your Feedback


Once you’ve figured out what exactly isn’t working you can become even more specific by suggesting solutions to their problem. So don’t stop at “the color isn’t working,” but help think of what could work.


Maybe the color needs to be lighter, or darker, or a different color altogether. In any case, don’t leave them to brainstorm solutions all alone. Giving suggestions can also help further solidify their understanding of what insights your criticism is trying to give.


Skill #10: How to Receive Feedback


In any workplace, you are going to receive feedback about your work and performance. Here are a few steps to follow anytime you are receiving criticism:




A lot of times, when receiving criticism about something we’ve worked on, our initial gut reaction is to talk, to explain ourselves, to help them see what we were seeing, or to defend our work and therefore ourselves.


But when you are talking you are missing out on the feedback the other person could be giving if you let them have the floor.


It may help to look at your work not as YOUR work, but as THE work. Separate your work from yourself and allow it to be its own entity that you and the critic are both just working on together.


Wait Until the End to Ask Questions


Waiting until you know they are finished to ask questions is the best way to make sure you don’t miss anything.


Asking questions will also help you understand their feedback more. Feedback is only helpful if you have a clear understanding of it, so don’t be afraid to ask questions at the appropriate time.


Turn Negatives to Positives!


Sometimes criticism isn’t so constructive. Other times even constructive criticism can just come with a lot of negatives.


If the feedback is poorly given or includes a lot of negatives, focus on what good you can take from it to be better.


Thank the Critic


Make a habit of thanking your critics for their feedback. Even if it was poorly given, thanking them can help them relax and realize they don’t need to be hostile to get through to you.


Implement the Feedback


Make a plan going forward of how you will implement the feedback. It was meant for your benefit so take full advantage! This is where you take the wheel back again and start driving forward.


Skill #11: Time Management


Manage your time well. You can be the best employee in the world, but if you constantly miss deadlines due to poor time management, you undercut yourself.


Learn how to allocate your time for each task wisely to increase your marketability. Time management skills will not only help you be more productive, but it will also help you take care of yourself better.


If you need a starting point for learning to better manage your time, start with assigning a “planning day” each week. On your designated planning day, lay out the following plans:

  • plan your month
  • plan your week
  • plan your weekend
  • plan your day


There are also lots of time management tools available that can help you have what you need to easily and effectively manage your time and your work.


Popular Time Management Tools:

  • is great for managing team jobs.
  • Toggl is great for keeping track of how you use your time.
  • Google or Microsoft Tasks are great for making and organizing your to-do lists.
  • Bullet journals are a great agenda for the creative spirit or if you want to organize a lot of different things in one place.
  • Trello is a great app if you like to organize with post-it notes.
  • Mind Meister is a great tool if you like to organize in a map or thought-web form.
  • Hard copy calendars are great for a big picture visual.
  • White boards are also great for a big picture visual.


Skill #12: Organization


Effective organization gives you more control of your work and your life. If your tasks are all planned out in doable chunks then you can tackle your workload better and stress about it less.


For instance, you’ll know you don’t need to worry about task B today because you have plenty of time allotted on Thursday to tackle that item.


Also, try keeping a list of all the things you’ve finished so you can have an accumulating list of accomplishments to remind you of how productive you’ve been.


Skill #13: Adaptability


Be adaptable. The workplace today is changing rapidly. Rather than being angry and resistant to changes, develop flexibility.


Flexibility is a winning strategy in today’s job market. It is also important to prioritize and be flexible with your time in order to take care of your own well-being, while still being productive.


Skill #14: Good Work Ethic


Develop a strong work ethic. Work ethic can encapsulate a lot of different things. Ultimately work ethic is the idea that hard work and quality work are important.


If you have a good work ethic that means that you put in good, valuable, high-quality work and that you care about the kind of work you are doing. It also encompasses how you carry yourself in the workplace.


Here are some of the biggest components of what it means to have a good work ethic:

  • Productivity
  • Efficiency
  • Quality work
  • Dependable


Skill #15: Positive Attitude


Develop a positive attitude. Nothing is less attractive than someone who doesn’t want to be on the job. Whether you hate or love your job, develop gratitude and a positive attitude to keep morale up!


Along with having an overall positive attitude become invested in your work. It is yours to do and how you do it and your attitude toward it, will reflect you more than it reflects your job.


In Conclusion,


Employers are looking for a lot of things when interviewing new employees. You don’t have to list every single one of these top skills on your resume either.


Just list a few of these key job skills along with some solid examples to show you have these skills and you’ll be all set.


The Balance Careers. “The Best Job Skills to Include on Your Resume,” by Alison Doyle.

Indeed Career Guide. “Leadership Skills: Definitions and Examples.”

HubSpot. “The 8 Most Common Leadership Styles & How to Find Your Own,” by Braden Becker.

What is Unemployment?

lego man at a work desk

Did you know there were actually different types of unemployment?

Explore this Guide:


What is Unemployment?


Unemployment refers to a government program that is set up to help those who are unemployed. You can get on the unemployment program if you’ve lost your job and need financial aid while you search for your next job, or if you are unable to work due to a disability.


Some family members and dependents can also sometimes receive unemployment in the case that their primary provider passes away.


Unemployment is a government program to help those who have lost their jobs or have trouble finding a new job. Unemployment can help people in between their job searching so they can still pay their bills.


There are also several different kinds of unemployment:


Frictional Unemployment


Frictional unemployment is when people are simply changing jobs. Frictional unemployment is the period between searching for a new job and going through interviews before you land that next job.


This is also a voluntary form of unemployment due to an individual wanting to switch jobs or careers for their own personal reasons. Frictional unemployment is usually a short period of time and doesn’t usually cause too many problems for the individual or the economy.


Cyclical Unemployment


Cyclical unemployment is when unemployment rates go up during hard economic times and down during good economic times.


Cyclical unemployment is a common cycle that unemployment goes through during recessions vs economic upturns. Unemployment rates go up when the economy is doing poorly and down when the economy is doing well.


Structural Unemployment


Structural unemployment occurs when technological and structural changes take place in the world, the economy, and the workplace.


Sometimes structural changes and developments can create unemployment trends.


For example, when horse-drawn carriages began to disappear in favor of automobiles an entire demographic of workers began to lose their jobs while new types of jobs related to automobiles began to arise.


Institutional Unemployment


Institutional unemployment is when employment rates change due to institutional or governmental changes.


Many times these changes are long-term or permanent changes in the system that can affect employment and unemployment rates.


For instance, changes in government policies about labor laws, minimum wage, or workplace discrimination policies can have an impact on levels of unemployment while the workplace gets used to the institutional changes.


Seasonal Unemployment


Seasonal unemployment is similar to structural unemployment. The structure of a workforce is seasonal and thus creates unemployment during certain off-seasons.


This happens when the skills and services of certain workers are only needed during certain times of the year and not during others.


This might include forest firefighters whose skills are usually not needed during the winter months or construction workers who primarily work during the warmer months and not during the colder months.


What is Partial Unemployment?


Partial unemployment occurs when an employee hasn’t been let go from a job but their hours have been significantly cut.


Many workers need full-time hours in order to make enough each week to feed themselves and pay bills, so when their hours are cut down they fall under partial unemployment.


How Does Unemployment Work?


First, you must qualify for unemployment. If you qualify for unemployment then the government unemployment program will send you regular checks to help financially sustain you until you can get a new job.


Unemployment benefit laws vary by state and it is with the state that an unemployed individual applies or files for unemployment.


There are also different kinds of unemployment benefits:


Unemployment Insurance


The unemployment insurance benefits program is for workers who have lost their job through no fault of their own. This is the most typical benefit program for the unemployed and is usually run by the state.


Continuation of Health Coverage (COBRA)


COBRA stands for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act. This act is a benefits program that helps continue health insurance plans for the unemployed.


Disability Insurance


Disability insurance is a type of unemployment program for workers who are unemployed for a short or long amount of time due to a disability.


This benefit program can then help support the unemployed worker until the disability ends or indefinitely if the disability is permanent.


Worker’s Compensation


This type of benefit helps workers who can’t work due to an injury or ailment they got from the job.


For example, if you get injured while at work and are unable to work because of it, you might be eligible for worker’s compensation.


Wrongful Discharge or Termination of Employment


If you’ve been fired from your job for wrongful or discriminatory reasons then you might be able to contact your State Labor Office and seek legal action or counsel for your situation.


You might also qualify for unemployment compensation if you’ve been terminated for a wrongful reason.


Welfare or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)


Welfare or TANF are benefit programs meant to help families reach financial independence and get them through financially difficult times.


Can I Get a Loan If I’m Unemployed?


Payday loans are small loans that are set up to be repaid in full when your next paycheck arrives. But what if you’re unemployed and still need a small, short-term loan?


Lucky for you, if you are on unemployment benefits, then you might still get approved for a payday loan. This is because your unemployment checks work very similarly to a regular paycheck. You get regularly scheduled unemployment checks just like when you receive regularly scheduled paychecks from an employer.


So if you are on unemployment benefits, you can set up your payday loan to be repaid when your next unemployment check is supposed to come in, just like you would set up a payday loan with a regular paycheck.


This way, you can get your unemployment check faster and avoid missing any important payments or getting hit with fees and other financial consequences of missing payments.


What is a Payday Loan?


A payday loan is a small, short-term loan that’s linked to your paycheck. The purpose of this loan is to help borrowers get to their next paycheck when sudden expenses arise.


A payday loan can help a borrower make important payments on time, like rent and utilities. It can also help borrowers avoid the fees from missing these essential payments because your payday didn’t come soon enough.


How Do Payday Loans Work?


Taking out a payday loan is easy. All you have to do is visit a payday loan lender and fill out a short application.


Since payday loans are connected to your paycheck, you’ll need to have a job and a regular paycheck to tie to the loan. This is why many payday loan lenders will ask for proof of income or proof of employment before approving a borrower’s loan application.


Once the payday loan is approved, the borrower will either provide their bank account information or a check. Your bank account information will be used to automatically pay back the loan on the date your next paycheck is supposed to fall. Or the check you write out will be for the total amount you borrow and owe the lender, and will get deposited by the lender when your payday loan payment is due.


This is why payday loans are so straightforward and convenient! You take out one small lump sum all at once and then pay it all back once your next paycheck does finally arrive.


How to Get a Payday Loan on Unemployment


Step 1: Visit your nearby Check City store.


Step 2: Provide the necessary materials listed below.


Step 3: Fill out a payday loan application.


Step 4: Get approved and get your cash!


What is Required for a Payday Loan on Unemployment?


  • You must be on unemployment benefits
  • A letter, usually from the state, showing you are on unemployment benefits
  • Your photo ID
  • A checking account


Other Loans for Unemployed


Check City offers many small, short-term loan options, like personal loans, installment loans, title loans, and signature loans.


Check City Signature Loans are available in stores only. To apply for a Check City Signature Loan, stop by any of our Utah Locations for more details and to see if a signature loan would be right for you.


Investopedia. “Understanding Your 401(k) Benefits: Tax Breaks, an Employer Match, and More 401(K) Benefits,” by Amy Bell.

The Balance. “Not Everyone Who Is Jobless Is Unemployed,” by Kimberly Amadeo.

ThoughtCo. “Understanding the 4 Basic Types of Unemployment,” by Jodi Beggs. “Unemployment Help.”

Jobs for Teens


There’s a point when an allowance just doesn’t cut it anymore. That’s when jobs for teens and small businesses for teens come in to save the day.

Explore this Guide:


If your teenaged children want to go on dates, buy their own clothes, save up for their first car, or start saving for college then they’ll need to get out there and start earning some real money.


The only way they can do this, without it impacting your own wallet, is for them to start a small business or get a job.


Benefits of Getting a Job for Teens


There are many jobs available out there for teens. There are even many jobs for teens with no experience in any field of work.


At a real place of work, young people can also learn a lot of life lessons like responsibility and working with other coworkers.


They’ll gain experience and skills they can put on their resume and college applications.


Working at an already established place of work is also easier than creating your own business from scratch, even if it is a small business.


Benefits of Starting a Business for Teens


What better way to get experience in work ethic than to start a small business?


Starting a small business as a teen can be much more beneficial than getting a job at the burger joint down the street for minimum wage.


First of all, your kids will be able to make their own hours, so they’ll still have the flexibility to focus on school and extracurricular activities.


Kids can also potentially make more money working for themselves than they will making minimum wage. With their own mini business they’ll be able to set their own pay.


Read more about how teens can start their own business in our article, “6 Ways Teenagers Can Start Their Own Businesses.”


More importantly, starting a mini business teaches your kids many valuable lessons about finance, responsibility, and business.


They’ll learn how to manage their money and be responsible for the work they’re being paid to do. They’ll also learn great business know-how like how to advertise their business and schedule their own time.


Here are some of the best job ideas for teens and small business ideas for teens:


Summer Jobs For Teens



Summer is a great time for teens to make some extra money. School is out for the summer and they have all the free time in the world at their disposal.


Some summer job ideas for teens include things like,

  • Summer camp jobs for teens
  • Campaign worker
  • Summer school tutoring
  • Dog walker
  • Spring cleaner
  • Gardener
  • Lawn mowing
  • House sitter
  • Lifeguard
  • Amusement park ride operator


These are all job ideas that teens can do during the warm summer months.


Be on the lookout for any other seasonal jobs for teens going on in the summer, like carnivals, festivals, food trucks, and amusement parks.


If there are any other local summer-time events that go on in your community, there’s a chance your teens can also get involved in those.


Seasonal Jobs For Teens



Seasonal jobs are any job that lasts only a few months during a certain season of the year.


For example, carnivals and festivals aren’t usually open all year round. They open for a couple weeks out of the year only.


Seasonal jobs for teens can be especially lucrative because they often require lots of long hours in a short span of time.


Some examples of seasonal jobs for teens include,

  • Amusement parks
  • Festivals
  • Carnivals
  • Haunted houses
  • Santa’s workshop
  • Seasonal retail work during busy seasons like Christmas and Black Friday
  • Lifeguard duty
  • Summer camp counselor
  • Snow removal
  • Leaf raking
  • Lawn mowing
  • Gardening


Online Jobs For Teens



Some teens are really extroverted and others are more introverted.


More introverted teens will feel more comfortable working from home or working online.


Extroverted teens might also enjoy the flexibility of working online.


Some ideas for online jobs for teens include:

  • Online tutoring
  • Freelance writing
  • Freelance editing
  • Social media manager
  • Taking online surveys
  • Writing online reviews


Jobs like freelance writing and editing might require some skills. But teens can also gain a lot of experience by diligently offering their entry-level skills at a fair price.


Then they can strengthen their resumes while they strengthen their own skills.


Part Time Jobs For Teens



Many teens want to work part-time rather than full time.


A part-time job is about 20 hours a week, while a full-time job is about 40 hours a week.


By working only part-time, teens can still have plenty of time to enjoy their youth and keep up with schoolwork and friends.


Most jobs for teens offer part-time options. They could work part-time as a cashier, in a warehouse, as a stock person, or work part-time during the week babysitting or walking the neighbor’s dog.


Babysitting Jobs For Teens



Babysitting is a very popular job option for young people.


Babysitting doesn’t require a lot of skill or know-how, especially if a teen has younger siblings they’re already used to taking care of.


A babysitting wage can also be plenty for a teenager who just wants to pay for some cool new shoes.


Babysitting also allows teens to work with parents in their own neighborhood that they already know and feel safe and comfortable with.


At Home Jobs For Teens



Maybe you’re a parent who would rather pay your teens to do jobs around your own house than send them off to do work for someone else.


This can be a great way to get older children to do difficult but necessary chores around the house without complaint.


  • Mow the lawn
  • Clean out the garage
  • Power wash the house exterior
  • Plant the flowerbed
  • Repaint a room
  • Wipe down all the baseboards and door frames
  • Yard sale assistant


You can get the lawn mowed, the garage cleaned out, or a room repainted and your teen will do it happily because they’re working toward a personal financial goal.


Tutoring Jobs For Teens



Tutoring is a job that can be done at home, online, at a public place like school or the library, or at the home of the student getting tutored.


In order to tutor someone on a subject, you usually need 3 things:

  1. You already took the class yourself
  2. You got a good grade in that class
  3. A personal curriculum for tutoring for that class


A tutor’s curriculum doesn’t need to teach the class in place of the actual teacher.


Your curriculum should instead help support the class the student is already taking.


If you can, try and pinpoint which parts of the class students most struggle with and try to become an expert on helping students understand those parts.


You can also accumulate helpful resources like videos and infographics that explain the subject in ways that are easier to understand.


Work From Home Jobs For Teens



Introverted adults aren’t the only ones who want to work from home. Teens can benefit from working from home too!


With a work from home job, teens can save on gas and won’t have to borrow the family car to go to work each day.


Find some entry-level work from home jobs for teens on freelance websites like Upwork.


Writing Jobs For Teens



Upwork is also a great place to find writing jobs for teens.


All of the jobs listed on Upwork are remote jobs, so teens can use their writing skills and make some extra money all from home!


Writing jobs for teens might include writing reviews, writing articles, coaching others through the writing process, or proofreading someone’s writing.


Animal Jobs For Teens



Is your teen a big animal lover?


Animal jobs for teens are everywhere if you just know where to look and how to promote your services.


You could,

  • Babysit someone’s pets while they’re away
  • Offer some basic pet grooming and bathing services
  • Walk the neighborhood dogs
  • Work for a pet groomer
  • Work for a local veterinarian
  • Work for the local pet shelter
  • Work at a nearby farm
  • Work at a nearby zoo


All you have to do is go to the animal places where you want to work and ask for an application.


Volunteer Jobs For Teens



Volunteer jobs for teens don’t always pay because they’re considered volunteer work.


But sometimes volunteer work can lead to connections and jobs later down the road.


Volunteer work can also teach teens new skills for free since they are volunteering their time.


You can find volunteer jobs for teens near you by talking to your local school, community center, library, or by visiting sites like


Library Jobs For Teens



The library is another safe and educational place for teens to work.


At the library, teens can work shelving books, helping visitors get library cards, or helping people find the books they’re looking for.


There might also be a computer center at the library that they can work managing and helping visitors log in.


Nursing Home Jobs For Teens



Nursing homes are a great place for teens to find jobs.


Teens can potentially help work in the kitchens, prepare the meals, clean, and assist the elderly residents and nursing home staff.


If there is no nursing home available, teens can also work as caregivers for elderly neighbors. They can do their grocery shopping and help out with housekeeping and cooking each day.


Warehouse Jobs For Teens



Warehouses are large storage buildings where stores keep their inventory.


Warehouse employees work with incoming and outgoing shipments. They have to keep all the inventory organized and accounted for.


Cleaning Jobs For Teens



Cleaning jobs are an easy job for teens to get into.


They can apply to work as janitors at almost any building or they can set up their own cleaning business.


To set up a cleaning business teens will need cleaning supplies and a way of promoting their business.


The easiest way to get started as a teen with a cleaning business is to ask around the neighborhood first for people whose homes or offices need a custodian.


Lawn Mowing Business



Chances are you’ve already got a functioning lawnmower in the shed.


Let your teen use the lawnmower and turn it into some steady income during the warmer months.


To have a successful lawn mowing business, teens will need a lawnmower, appropriate attire and footwear for outdoor work, and some local advertising for their lawn mowing service.


It’s that easy!


You can even include your own lawn in their pool of clients.


Here’s an added benefit of a lawn mowing business—plenty of exercise!


Run Errands for the Elderly



Your child can learn a great lesson about serving those in need by running errands for the elderly people in the neighborhood.


Your neighbors will be happy because your teenager’s services will probably cost less than the more expensive delivery and errand services they would normally have to pay for.


They’ll also be happy because they’ll get to keep the company of the younger generation all while making a positive difference in the lives of local youth.


This errand business could even expand to include all demographics.


Many people love to get their groceries delivered. Paying someone else to run your errands for you can save so much time!


Snow Removal Business



Some people aren’t capable of shoveling their own sidewalks and driveways when heavy snow starts to fall.


Other snow removal clients simply don’t have the time or energy for the task.


Either way, teens can take advantage of the snow by offering their snow-shoveling services to the neighborhood!


All they need are some warm snow clothes and a shovel.


Leaf Raking Business



Capitalize on the autumn months when the leaves start to fall from all the trees by raking leaves in your neighborhood and raking in the profits while you’re at it!


All you need to get started with a leaf raking business is a rake and some large black trash bags to clean up the raked leaf piles.


A wheelbarrow for carrying the large, bagged leaf piles might also come in handy.


Dog Walking Jobs for Teens



Not everyone has the time to take the dog for a walk every day.


But dogs need plenty of exercise to stay healthy and happy.


Your teens need adequate exercise each day to stay happy and healthy too.


Tackle these 2 objectives in one chore by starting a professional dog walking business.


Walking dogs can potentially be really profitable too since you can walk 4 or 5 dogs at one time.


Car Washing Business



Where do most people take their cars to get washed?


Usually some mega-chain or automatic car wash that costs a lot and only gets parts of the car clean.


Wouldn’t it be better to pay some kids in the neighborhood to wash your car, rather than giving that money to some giant car wash chain?


Teens can even work together to set up a car washing business where they all help out and split the profits.


Job Interview Tips For Teens



The first thing you need to do when searching for a job as a teenagers is write a resume. A good resume will include your work experience so far, volunteer work you’ve done, classes you’ve taken, awards, accomplishments, and skills you have.


Even if you don’t have actual work experience, there are probably other examples of experience you have that can go on your resume. Like being an honors student, serving as student class president, or working as a summer camp counselor.


Bring two copies of your resume with you to the interview.


One copy will be for you to reference and the other will be for the job interviewer in case they don’t come to the interview with their own copy.


Coming to a job interview prepared with copies of your resume will make you look professional, prepared, and ready to answer their questions.


Practice talking about your resume.


Most likely the interviewer will ask you questions about your resume. Be prepared to talk about each item you have listed.


Make a note on your personal resume copy to remind you of a short story or example you could talk about for each item on your resume.


Practice answering basic interview questions.


The more you practice for a job interview the less nervous you’ll feel in the job interview.


Practice answering basic interview questions with a parent, sibling, friend, or in front of the mirror.


For more tips and tricks on how to succeed at job interviews read our article, “Job Interviews Tips for 2020.”


Indeed. “8 Interview Questions for Teens With Examples and Tips.”

The Balance Careers. “Teen Job Interview Questions, Answers, and Tips,” by Alison Doyle.

Live Career. “Interview Preparation for Teens: 11 Tips for Getting the Job,” by Jacob Share.

How to Negotiate Salary

counting money

Many people forget to negotiate their salary and instead accept whatever salary the job offers without argument or complaint.

Explore this Guide:


It feels impolite to negotiate or argue when you are being offered something very important like a job.


But negotiating salary doesn’t have to be uncomfortable and hostile.


In fact, many employers purposefully leave some room for negotiations in the initial salary they offer.


If you’re unfamiliar with salary negotiations and how they work, then this article is for you.


Take Home Pay Calculator



A good place to start when negotiating salary is to calculate your ideal take home pay.


Take home pay is the amount of money that ends up in your actual paycheck. Another term for take home pay is net income.


Net income is the sum of all your wages after deductions, like taxes, are made.


Gross income on the other hand, is a calculation of your wages before these deductions are made.


Let’s say you get paid $20 an hour. That means you make $800 a week in gross income.


But deductions get made to each paycheck for things like taxes, social security, pensions, insurance, employee benefits, etc.


That means the same employee making $20 an hour will actually take home less than $800 each week in net income or take home pay.


How to calculate take home pay is different for each employee.


For example, if you have insurance with your employer than those monthly insurance payments might come directly out of your paycheck or they might not.


Take home pay will also look different depending on how you filled out your W-4 and whether you decided to withhold anything from taxes.


Use this free Take Home Pay Calculator to quickly figure out how much you actually take home each paycheck.


It takes into account everything taxes takes out of each paycheck. This gives you a more realistic view of what you’re getting from your job.


Should I Negotiate Salary?



How do you know when you should negotiate salary?


There are a few specific circumstances that call for a salary negotiation like when you’ve received a job offer or when you’re getting a promotion at work.


Then there are instances where it’s appropriate to initiate a salary negotiation like if you’ve recently taken on more responsibilities or learned that someone in your field or position should be making more on average.


When to Negotiate Salary



If you’re stuck on knowing when to negotiate salary and when not to negotiate salary, here’s a helpful guide to follow:


Negotiate Salary When You Have an Offer Letter:


Sometimes a certain amount of salary negotiation is appropriate during a job interview. But in general, you want to save real salary negotiations for after you actually have an offer letter.


An Offer Letter or a job offer letter, is the official letter an employer sends you when they want to offer you the job.


An offer letter might also include basic information about the job like when you’ll start, how much you’ll make, and what your hours will be.


You don’t want to waste your time or the recruiters time by talking about salary decisions too soon.


That being said, you might be asked in the interview for an idea of what kind of salary you’d be expecting.


But real negotiations about the final salary are best saved for after you’ve been offered the job.


Negotiate Salary When You Have a Promotion:


Usually promotions come with some kind of pay raise.


Negotiate this pay raise with your employer so that you’re fairly compensated for the extra work, duties, and responsibilities you’ll take on once you’re promoted.


Negotiate Salary When Your Work Responsibilities Increase:


Someone quits and you end up taking on their workload. This is a prime example of when your work responsibilities increase and you could appropriately negotiate a higher wage.


Things happen. Maybe when you were hired, you were expected to do A, B, and C tasks, but for whatever reasons, you end up doing X, Y, and Z tasks as well.


Approach your employer and show them all the extra work you’ve been doing when negotiating for a higher wage.


Don’t Negotiate Salary When You Haven’t Been offered the Job Yet


Preliminary interviews aren’t usually a great time to negotiate salary.


The interviewer is still learning about you and your skill set. It won’t be until later when they weigh their options that they’ll decide whether to offer you the job or not.


So, in a preliminary interview, the most you want to do is give the interviewer an idea of the salary range you’d be interested in, if they ask you about it.


Otherwise, avoid seeming presumptuous by waiting until after you’ve received an official job offer or offer letter to negotiate salary.


Don’t Negotiate Salary When You Already Accepted the Salary They Offered:


Once you accept a job offer, it’s not very appropriate or professional to change your mind and try to negotiate a new salary.


This is why it’s important to be prepared before going into interviews.


Know what your skills are financially worth. Know what the average pay for a person in your field is in the state you live in.


Trying to open up salary negotiations after you’ve already accepted a job offer’s proposed salary makes you seem fickle and unprepared.


Stop Negotiating Salary When They’ve Given You Their Best Offer:


Every business has a budget they need to stick too.


This includes a budget for how much they can pay their employees. Some companies are better equipped to pay higher wages than other companies.


If an employer has made it known that a certain salary amount is the best they can do, it’s time to either accept the offer or continue the job search.


It might also be time to stop negotiating when the employer is already offering the average salary for someone of your skillset and experience level.


How to Negotiate Salary



Decide on the right moment and then start preparations for the negotiations.


Step 1: Research Common Salaries in Your Field


Before you even go into job interviews, you should research common salaries within your field.


Websites like PayScale, Glassdoor, and the US Bureau of Labor Statistics can all give you statistics on what other workers like you are making right now.


While researching how much you can expect to get paid, consider the following variables:

  • State
  • City
  • Experience level
  • Skills
  • Licenses and certifications
  • Education level


These variables are important and will change how much you can reasonably ask for from an employer.


For instance, the typical salary range for someone who graduated with a bachelor’s degree is usually less than someone who’s graduated with a master’s degree.


Likewise, if you’re still new to the field you probably won’t get the same salary as someone whose been working in the industry for 20+ years.


Take into consideration the state you live in, the city you live in, the years of experience you have, the skills you’ve developed, the extra qualifications, licenses, and certifications you have, and the education level you have when researching average salaries.


Step 2: Practice with a friend


Once you have the information you need to make your point to your employers it’s time to role play the conversation with a friend.


Practicing job interviews and salary negotiations with a friend can be the perfect cure for any nerves.


Then you’ll be freshly rehearsed and confident as you present your well-researched points to your employer.


Step 3: Present your research


It’s time to put all that research and rehearsing to good use.


Present your research and your talking points to your employer.
Clearly outline the data suggesting how much you should be making in this position.


Go over the skills, expertise, and qualifications you bring to the job to illustrate why you should make the salary you are negotiating.


Then see what the employers have to say in response and work with them the best you can.


How to Negotiate Salary During Interview



First of all, it’s best to negotiate salary after you’ve actually received an official job offer and not before.


But sometimes, during interviews, it’s apparent that you are getting the job, or, they want to get an idea of what salary you’d like so they know what to offer you if you do get the job.


It’s perfectly alright to ask for an idea of the starting salary in a job interview.


You don’t negotiate salary in the job interview to finalize what you’ll be paid, because you don’t have the job yet. But some preliminary talks about what you might expect in a salary, or what salary they might provide, is very common in job interviews.


Again, this is why doing salary research is important to do before you even head to the job interview.


You need to know what your skills and experience level are worth in the job interview so you make a reasonable and appropriate response to what your salary requirements are.


Negotiating Promotion Salary



Promotions, raises, and performance reviews are all great opportunities to negotiate for a better salary.


When getting a promotional raise or a merit raise, it’s important to be prepared and begin negotiating before the business budgets have been set in stone.


Don’t waste time.


Get prepared and schedule your salary negotiation as soon as possible. Your employer will be more likely to help you out if the budget is still adjustable.


Promotional salary negotiations often involve raise percentages since you already have the job.


Calculate ahead of time what percentage raise you’d like to receive.


Negotiate promotion salary by doing the following steps:


Set a salary/raise percentage range.


In any negotiation it’s a good idea to have a range for your expectations.


Decide what the lowest and highest raises are that you would be comfortable accepting.


It also helps if you have some data to present that backs up your salary requests.


List your accomplishments.


Support your argument for a higher raise with specific examples and stories that illustrate your merit and why you deserve this raise.


Be flexible.


Negotiations aren’t just about getting what you want. They’re also about compromise.


Employers have a budget and company structure they have to work with.


Keep your coworker relationships civil by being flexible, understanding, and working alongside your employer in upping your wage.


How to Negotiate Salary Over the Phone



It isn’t always possible to negotiate salary face to face. Sometimes you’ll have to negotiate salary over the phone instead.


Phone conversations are different from a face-to-face conversation.


In a face-to-face conversation you can read the body language and facial expressions of the other person. There are important unspoken parts during an in-person conversation.


Over the phone, you lose access to these unspoken messages.


To negotiate salary over the phone, prepare yourself in the same way described above. Then, prepare yourself further to be direct and clear during your phone conversation.


Be more direct when giving and asking for feedback during the conversation.


You won’t be able to see their face and know if that number seemed way too high to them. Don’t forget to ask directly for their thoughts to so you can get a clear understanding of their responses.


Salary Negotiation Email



Emailing can be really stressful. There’s no forgiveness when every word is written down for everyone to read and analyze over and over again.


You have to be extra careful writing and editing a salary negotiation email.


A salary negotiation email needs to include:

  • a salary proposal
  • a response to a previous salary proposal
  • what your salary proposal is based on
  • gratitude


If you can, ask someone you trust to read over your email to double check it for errors.


Salary Negotiation Email Samples:


Sometimes you need a little help drafting a good email for something as important as salary negotiations.


Use these salary negotiation email samples to help you figure out what to say in your own email.


But, don’t just copy and paste these email templates. Use them to write your own salary negotiation email that is more specific to your personal circumstances.


Salary Negotiation Email for a New Job:

Company Name,

Thank you for this job opportunity. I am confident I can make a great addition to your team and look forward to working together.

Before I officially accept this job offer I would like to take a moment to discuss compensation.

An employee with my expertise makes anywhere between $_____ and $_____ a year in our area. Ideally, I would be the most comfortable settling on a base salary of $_____ a year.

I feel this base salary amount best reflects the skills and qualifications I have to offer.

Thank you so much for your time and consideration. I hope to hear back from you about this salary proposition soon.


Your Name


Salary Negotiation Email for a Current Job:

Company Name,

I have been working at (Company Name) for _____ number of years. In this time I have (talk about your responsibilities, accomplishments at the job, and ways you’ve improved the Company).

I would like to put my current salary up for consideration. Right now I am making $_____ a year, and considering the above mentioned merits, I would like to propose a raised salary of $_____ a year.

I feel this proposed salary increase better reflects skills and qualifications I bring to the Company.

Thank you so much for your time and consideration. I hope to hear back from you about this proposed salary increase soon.


Your Name


General Salary Negotiation Email Format:

Company Name,

Paragraph about your personal merits, skills, education, experience level, qualifications, and talents that are variables in the decision about how much you should make.

Paragraph with links to any data about the average salaries that employees with your similar experience, education, and skills receive.

Brief paragraph with a straightforward salary proposal.

Brief expression of gratitude and thanks to the employer and a friendly reminder for when and how to contact them to continue and finalize salary negotiations.


Your Name


Salary Negotiation Tips



Here are all the salary negotiation tips and tricks you should use and keep in mind when heading into salary negotiations.


Know Your Worth:


And know how to base your professional worth.


It isn’t based on what your previous job paid you or how much a colleague in your same field gets paid.


There is a market for your career and the salary in that market is based on education level, skills, and experience.


Don’t settle for less than you deserve.


Research the salary market in your profession and know what your skillset is worth to an employer.


Go Higher:


Start salary negotiations with a higher number than your actual ideal salary.


Then, even if the employer comes back with a lower number, you’re more likely to actually get the salary range you were hoping for in the first place.


Likewise, if you provide an employer with a salary range, keep the lowest end of your salary range a little high.


That way, if they offer your “lowest” salary range, you’ll still be getting a salary you can be happy with.


Consider Expenses:


When listing the reasons you want your proposed salary, don’t forget any expenses.


Maybe you can’t afford to live close to work and will have daily commutes to budget for in this job.


Maybe you have a household of dependents who need your financial support.


Or maybe this job required extensive education that you now need to pay off.


Consider Other Benefits:


Not all job benefits go directly toward your salary.


There are other job benefits you can negotiate about like insurance, transportation, gas funds, employee perks and benefit programs.


An employer might not have the budget for the exact salary you want, but they do have the budget structured in such a way that can give you gas money, an employee pass to a nearby gym, or free breakfast.

We spend a lot of time at our jobs. They become a big part of our life, our passions, and our livelihood.


The passion, time, and energy we put into our work deserves to be properly compensated.


Do your research and negotiate with confidence.


And good luck on all your career endeavors!


HubSpot. “How to Successfully Negotiate Your Salary (Script Included),” by Caroline Forsey.

Corporate Finance Institute. “How to Negotiate Salary After a Job Offer:
What to do & What NOT to do.”

GlassDoor. “How to Negotiate Your Salary,” “How to Negotiate Beyond the Raise You Were Offered?” by Josh Doody, “11 Words and Phrases to Use in Salary Negotiations,” by Emily Moore.

The Balance Careers. “Salary Negotiation Tips (How to Get a Better Offer),” by Alison Doyle, “What Not to Say When You’re Negotiating Salary,” by Jen Hubley Luckwaldt.

EnvatoTutsPlus. “How to Negotiate Your Salary via Email (With Killer Tips + Examples),” by Charley Mendoza.

PayScale. ”
How to Negotiate a New Job Offer,” by Hannah Morgan.

Indeed. “How to Negotiate Salary (With Tips and Examples).”

How to Start a Business

shaking hands

“To be successful, you have to have your heart in your business, and your business in your heart.” —Thomas Watson Sr

Explore this Guide:


This article will go over every step you need to follow to become the boss of your own business. Not only will we help you know how to start a business, but we’ll go over some ways to ensure your business is successful too.


We live in an age full of entrepreneurs starting their own businesses. In fact, a recent report found that in the US there are 27 million entrepreneurs running their own businesses.


There are so many ways to start and run a business today. And there are so many benefits to running your own business.


You can set your own hours! Instead of working the typical 9:00 to 5:00 shift, you can set your hours however you want.


Do you want to get off work early every Friday? Also not a problem, because you’re in charge!


When you own a business you become your own boss. With that comes a lot of responsibility, but enough perks to make it worth your while.


Step 1: How to Start a Business Plan



The very first thing you need to do after you’ve decided to start your own business is to create a thorough business plan.


A strong business plan is necessary for business success.


It’s the same reason you need a thorough budget. A budget is a detailed plan for how to have personal monetary success and a business plan is a budget for your business success.


Step 1: Conduct business research


Creating a good business plan starts with some detailed research.


You need a clear idea of what you want your business to be and the market and industry you would be working in.


You should research,

  • the market
  • the industry
  • competitors
  • the area
  • projected costs
  • projected profits
  • your target audience


Research gives you key insights. If you want to start a restaurant then you should educate yourself as much as possible on good restaurant business practices, your competitors, the costs, etc.


For example, it might not be a great idea to open your own Italian restaurant in a town that already has a lot of Italian restaurants. But if you provide a new, but equally popular type of restaurant, you’re more likely to see success.


Step 2: List everything your business will need


A restaurant business has different needs than a clothing business.


Restaurants need food suppliers, cooks, waiters, a location, a menu, furniture, and decor. Clothing businesses need designers, clothing production, models, a storefront, and clothing racks for displays.


Take a moment to make a master list of everything your business needs. Don’t leave out a single item.


Include products, services, funds, and staff.


Step 3: Start scheduling tasks


Once you have this master list, break each item down into manageable tasks.


Detail how you’ll hire the proper staff, how you’ll acquire the services and goods you’ll need, and everything else your specific business endeavor require to be a success.


Step 4: Start budgeting


Make a budget specifically for your business. It should be separate from your personal finances.


You need to plan how you’ll get the funds to start and how you’ll organize all the profits and costs of operations.


A business budget is going to include sections for,

  • profits, the business income you can expect each month
  • monthly bills, like rent for the storefront location
  • costs for products and services the business needs
  • employee salaries and benefits
  • business investments and assets


More simply, you need to organize the funds you have coming into your business and the funds you have going out of your business.


Business Plan Templates


Having a solid business plan will really make starting your business easier. But first you have to know how to write a business plan.


If you need a business plan example, you should try downloading our free business plan template.


On this business plan template, you can easily outline all the important parts of your business plan like the basic plan, business analytics, and a business budget.


A basic business plan might include plans for the following items:

  • Mission statement
  • Company description
  • Products and services
  • Industry analysis
  • Market analysis
  • Competitor analysis
  • Marketing plans
  • Management delegation
  • Organizational structure
  • Legal structure
  • Budget


Download a Free Business Plan Template PDF HERE.




In order to be a legitimate business, every business needs an official legal structure.


Different legal structures work better depending on the type of business. The legal structure might also affect how your business can operate in your state or how your business gets taxed.


Picking the right legal structure for your business is crucial in providing your business with the best advantages.


A business legal structure is also how you protect yourself from liabilities, manage intellectual property, and manage your business’s taxes.


The most common types of legal structures for businesses are sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company, corporations, and cooperatives.


Each business structure comes with pros, cons, and costs to consider.


Sole Proprietorship is when one person is responsible for the company.


This means that the owner of the company is responsible for the company’s profits and debts. This allows you to be in complete control of your business and is the simplest legal structure you could choose.


The downside would be that if the business fails, you are the one to take the brunt of that loss.


Partnership is when two or more individuals own and take responsibility for the business together. If you are going into business with someone else, a partnership is the best way to set up your business’s legal structure.


You can even customize how you set up your partnership. Everything can be shared equally between the partners or one partner can have primary control of the company while the other partner contributes and receives part of the profit.


How exactly you want to set up your partnership is up to you.


Limited Liability Company is when owners and shareholders of a company don’t have personal responsibility over the profits and debts of a company.


This business types protects business owners from being personally held accountable for company debts and losses.


Corporation is when a company is set up as a separate entity from the company owners. The company is set up as its own individual.


This means “The Company” can act on its own. It has its own rights, and can sue, be sued, own and sell assets, and have stocks.


There are also different subcategories of corporations:


C Corporations are owned by shareholders and are taxed as separate entities from their owners.


S Corporations are for small business and help them avoid being taxed twice.


B Corporations or Benefit Corporations are businesses that are for-profit and strive to make positive impacts in the world.


Closed Corporations are a type of private or family business.


Open Corporations are on the public market, participate in trade, and allow investing.


Nonprofit Corporations have tax exemptions because they are not for-profit organizations. Instead they work to help others and benefit society.


Cooperatives are businesses that are owned by the people they serve. The owners of the business also use the business themselves.


A cooperative then votes on how the business is run and share the profits.


Once you’ve decided on the business legal structure that makes the most sense for your business you can make your business official:


Make your business official by registering your business, getting all the licenses and permits you need, getting a tax ID number (TIN) from the IRS, and opening a business bank account.


Step 3: Business License



Every business will have papers to get in order. There are licenses, permits, trademarks, patents, copyrights, taxes, and insurance that all need to be taken care of.


Keep in mind that such papers might need to be acquired from the federal, state, and local governments.


Contact your local and state government offices to get a list of all the legal obligations and paperwork your business will need.


Here are some examples of basic business paperwork, license, and permits:

  • Business operation license
  • Federal employer identification number (EIN) or a Tax Identification Number (TIN)
  • A “Doing Business As” (DBA) permit
  • Zoning and land use permits
  • Health department permit
  • Sales tax license
  • Fire department permits


If your business is selling, making, or dealing with certain products and services, special business licenses and permits might be required by the state.


You might need to seek a special state license if your business deals with liquor, lottery tickets, gasoline, firearms, medical care, auto repair, real estate sales, tax services, insurance sales, cosmetology, or legal representation.


You might need to seek a special federal license from specific federal offices if your business deals with investment advising (Securities & Exchange Commission), drug manufacturing (U.S. Food and Drug Administration), preparation of meat products (U.S. Food and Drug Administration), broadcasting (Federal Communications Commission), ground transportation (U.S. Department of Transportation), or manufacturing or selling tobacco, alcohol, or firearms (U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms).


Step 4: Branding



A big part of making your business a success is great branding.


Your business can’t take off if it doesn’t have a name, a logo, or a slogan that customers can easily remember.


To complete your business’s branding consider the following branding items:

  • Name
  • Logo
  • Icon
  • Colors
  • Fonts
  • Company personality
  • Slogan
  • Brand style guide
  • Company motto or mission statement


Usually, so long as a company name is available in your state, you can claim it.


Registering your business’s name will also help protect your business.


You can get help registering your business name with the US Small Business Administration.


Then, hire a graphic designer to develop your brand’s logo. Your logo is how customers will recognize your brand. They can also help create the fonts, colors, and design of your brand’s name.


For example, when you see the name “Coca Cola,” it’s usually in the iconic white letters, red background, and cursive font that Coca Cola always uses for their brand.


You don’t just recognize Coca Cola by its name, you recognize it by the visual designs you attribute to the brand as well.


A brand style guide will then help your company stay consistent in its design, content, and voice.


Another component of branding is setting up your company’s website, signs, and social media platforms.




Now you want to get your brand out there and introduce yourself to the world.


When advertising, you typically want to target your specific audience.


For example, Disney is a company that focuses on a younger audience. Because of this their advertising usually involves children, wonder, imagination, and is always appropriate for their younger intended audience.


There are many ways to advertise your business. You can pay for ads on social media platforms, on billboards, television, or the radio.


There are also promotional actions you can take to help build relationships with your intended audience. You can have contests, giveaways, sponsor community events, team up with other small businesses, have discounts, or other company events to draw attention.


All of this requires that you first have a firm understanding of what your audience is like, so that you can cater your advertising efforts toward what will be most effective for them.


How to Start a Facebook Business Page



A Facebook Business Page is in many ways like a second website for your business.


For some companies, they actually use their Facebook Page as their main website.


Properly setting up a Facebook Business Page is important because it is where you’ll do a lot of advertising, and where a lot of your customers and clients will come to first to get a feel for your brand.


First of all, you should know that there is a difference between a Facebook Personal Profile and a Facebook Business Page.


You do not want to use a personal profile for your business. Personal profiles don’t have the same useful features that an actual business page provides.


Business pages are also public, so everyone can see, like, and follow your business’s Facebook Page, regardless of whether they’re a Facebook Friend of yours or not.


To set up your Facebook Business Page right now, just go to Facebook’s homepage and click “Pages” in the menu. Then choose “Create New Page.”


From there you’ll want to fill in all the blanks for your Facebook page by adding a name, a profile image, a cover image, a description of your business, and all the other sections available for you to fill out.


Once that’s done you can publish your page and get started using your Facebook Business Page.


For more tips on how to set up a killer Facebook Business page, check out the article, “19 Easy Steps to Setting Up a Killer Facebook Business Page.”


How to Start a Small Business



Starting your own small business comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. You get to be in charge, but there is a lot to do when managing an entire business.


There is also a different process necessary depending on the type of business you are starting.


So if you want to know how to start a cleaning business, the answers you need will look different then the answers you’ll need to how to start a photography business.


Small businesses also have different starting points. Some startups are created by business owners who already have their own funds to put into a new business endeavor. Meanwhile other startups need to figure out how to start a business with no money or learn about starting a business from home.


The key to small business success is doing all the research you can into your specific industry.


So if you want to know how to start a clothing business, then learn as much as you can about the clothing business. It might also help to work for a while in clothing companies that already exist to get some real-world experience directly related to your business.


How Much Does it Cost to Start a Business?



How much money do you need to start a business?


The answer to this question depends greatly on the kind of business you want to start.


Selling a product from home that you make yourself will probably cost less than owning and operating an actual storefront.


By starting a business from home you can cut down on a lot of business costs and fees.


Otherwise, the studies indicate that around $30,000 is a good number to start with when starting a business.


How to Start a Business with No Money



If you’re like many aspiring entrepreneurs and freelancers, you want to know how to start a business from scratch.


Many entrepreneurs and small business startups need help figuring out how to start a business with no money.


Sell stuff.


Spring clean your home all while you declutter and make some extra money holding a virtual yard sale.


You can set up a virtual yard sale on the Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist Classifieds, or OfferUp.


How to Sell on the Facebook Marketplace:


If you already have a Facebook account then selling items on the Facebook Marketplace will be easy.


On the top menu of your Facebook page, click on the little market stall to get to the Facebook Marketplace page. You can also get there by going to the side menu and click the “Marketplace” tab.


Click the “+Sell Something” button and upload all the pictures and prices of what you want to sell.


How to Post Classifieds on Craigslist:


At the top of the Craigslist page, under the title, you’ll find the button “post to classifieds.”


Then you’ll follow some simple steps like, choosing the state you live in, choosing “for sale by owner” to sell your own things, and filling in all the information your post will need.


Don’t forget to add photos so shoppers can see what the product looks like.


How to Sell on OfferUp:


OfferUp is an app and website that lets you easily sell your things from home.


OfferUp also has its own messaging system so you don’t have to give strangers your personal information.


Just pick the “Sell” button on the website or the app and follow the easy steps to get your things up and for sale. Then you just have to wait for the offers to start coming in.


Mercari is another similar app that lets you sell from home without having to meet up with strangers. You just ship the goods you want to sell through the mail instead.




You can recycle almost anything. All you have to do is find a place that will accept whatever you want to recycle.


Here are just a few things you can recycle and potentially make some extra money:

  • old books and textbooks
  • bottles and cans
  • used ink cartridges
  • scrap metal
  • precious metals
  • old electronics
  • wine corks
  • cardboard
  • old batteries
  • old cars and car parts


How to Sell Gold at Check City:

  1. Bring your gold, silver, or platinum to any Check City store
  2. Show a valid state or government ID
  3. We’ll weigh and test your gold, silver, or platinum
  4. After we analyze the value, you’ll get paid in cash right on the spot


Check City uses the daily NYMEX market value to determine the worth of the gold, silver, or platinum that you bring in.


What You Can Sell at Check City:

  • Silver
  • Gold
  • Platinum
  • Necklaces
  • Bracelets
  • Rings
  • Dental gold
  • Pendants
  • Coins
  • Chains
  • Earrings
  • Jewelry
  • Watches


How to Start a Cleaning Business



The first thing you need to do in order to start a cleaning business is figure out how you’re going to get all your cleaning supplies and products.


Buying cleaning supplies for a business can be expensive if you’re going to just any supermarket. That’s why most cleaning businesses find themselves a supplier where they can buy their cleaning supplies in bulk and at lower costs.


The second thing you’ll do is start building your client basis and establish a working schedule with them all.


For example, you might clean for a different household each day, and put all your clients on a monthly rotation.


If you’re cleaning offices or other public spaces, you might schedule to clean Office A on Mondays and Wednesdays, and Office B on Tuesdays and Thursdays.


All that’s left to do after that is set up a website or a Facebook Business Page so that people can contact and hire your cleaning business.


How to Start a Tutoring Business



Tutoring is a great way to start making money for free. It’s also a great business idea if you want to start a business but don’t have any money.


You can also run your tutoring business all from the comfort of your own home.


To start a tutoring busines you’ll need to do the following:

  • gather resources for yourself and your students
  • develop a curriculum for the courses you’ll teach and help tutor for
  • set up and manage a schedule with all the students you’re helping
  • determine how you want to interact with your students
  • set the pricing for your tutoring services and start advertising your services


How to Start a Dog Walking Business



Dog walking is another business idea that doesn’t require you to spend heaps of money.


Though it might be tempting to start dog walking today, it is wise to set your dog walking business up as a Sole Proprietorship LLC, making you the head of your business. This will then make it easier for you to get the proper insurance to protect yourself against client’s taking legal action against you.


Other than that, setting up a dog walking business is easy. All you have to do is,

  • get comfortable dog walking attire
  • have extra leashes and harnesses on hand, just in case
  • have treats and water on hand
  • keep a schedule for all your clients
  • set pricing for walk lengths and/or dog breeds
  • have some dog walks mapped out for you to use
  • keep a contact sheet of the dog owners
  • keep a record of all your walks


You could also download a Dog Walking App for Dog Walkers:

  • Rover
  • PetBacker
  • Wag!


How to Start a YouTube Business



YouTubers are video entrepreneurs.


You can make good money with a YouTube channel so long as your content is successful.


In order to have a successful YouTube channel, you’ll want to follow these practices:

  • Pick your genre
  • Know your audience
  • Create a strong online presence
  • Create a strong brand
  • Publish videos regularly


Making money with a YouTube channel is all about collaborating with companies, advertising, and creating video content that your audience will look forward to watching.


Professional YouTubers make money a few different ways.

  • Let companies run ads on your channel
  • Create and sell your own merchandise
  • Join a YouTube Partner Program
  • Do affiliate marketing, where you get paid to use, reference, and review products
  • Get sponsorships
  • Get patrons
  • Book live engagements like giving speeches and presentations


Some of the most famous and successful YouTubers make up to $22 million a year!


But this doesn’t mean all aspiring YouTubers can find this kind of success. On average, it’s much more common for a hard working YouTuber to make around $16,800 a year.


Grants to Start a Business



For many small business entrepreneurs who are starting with nothing, they’ll need to acquire funds from grants, loans, or investors.


You can find grant and funding programs for small businesses through government grants and programs designed to help small businesses.


US Small Business Administration:

The US Small Business Administration has grants and funding for all kinds of small businesses.


They can help businesses find the right funding for them, they have grants for research and development businesses, grants for exporting, and grants for nonprofit organizations.


On the US Small Business Administration website, you can even get connected to free business counseling to help you find success.


USA Grant Applications:

When you first get onto the website just select the Business option.


Then you’ll fill out a registration form with information like your name, address, how much money you’ll need, and how you’ll use the money.


The form is actually pretty short! Fill it out in just a few minutes, submit it, and then just wait to see whether your application gets approved.


They even offer training to help you understand the different grants available to you.


How to Get a Loan to Start a Business



There are also other lenders you can look into for business loans.


Check City offers a number of loans that you can use to help get your small business off the ground and running.


Check City has the Check City Personal Loan, the Check City Installment Loan, and the Check City Title Loan.


Getting a loan for your business at Check City is easy too. All you have to do is,

  1. Fill out a loan application in the store or online
  2. If you’re in the store, make sure you bring your photo ID
  3. Submit your application and wait to get approved!


Best Books for Starting a Business



Books can be a great source of knowledge and inspiration. Especially if you’re starting in on a new career path of your own making.

  • Small Business For Dummies by Eric Tyson and Jim Schell
  • The Little Big Small Business Book by Micah Fraim
  • The Small Business Start-Up Workbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Starting the Business You’ve Dreamed Of by Cheryl D. Rickman
  • The Pumpkin Plan by Mike Michalowicz
  • The Worst Business Model In the World by Danny Schuman
  • Escape From Cubicle Nation by Pamela Slim
  • Founders at Work by Jessica Livingston
  • The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen
  • In the Company of Women by Grace Bonney
  • The Lean Startup by Eric Ries
  • The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey


Starting your own business takes a lot of courage. It also takes a lot of your personal time, energy, and resources. But when you have a dream, all of that becomes worth it in the end.


Business News Daily: Small Business Solutions & Inspiration. “How to Start a Business: A Step-by-Step Guide,” “How to Choose the Best Legal Structure for Your Business,” by Joshua Stowers. “Start Your Own Business.” “The U.S. Now Has 27 Million Entrepreneurs,” by Leigh Buchanan.

Forbes. “How To Create A Business Plan,” by Alejandro Cremades.

Nolo. “Start Your Own Business in Utah: Seven Steps You Need to Take,” by David M. Steingold.

US Small Business Administration. “Choose your business name.”

FindLaw. “Starting a Business: License and Permit Checklist.”

Career Guide | How Much Do Welders Make?


Explore this Career Guide:

How Much Do Welders Make?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is a part of the United States Department of Labor and the US Federal Statistical System. The BLS handles data, surveys, and statistics regarding jobs in the United States.

The information that the BLS gathers is important for the government and the public. It gives important insights into the economy and job market in the country.

According to data found by the BLS, workers in the United States make a median wage of $976 a week and $49,764 a year.

The BLS also has specific data on how much welders make. They found that the average welder in the US makes about $817.20 a week and $42,490 a year. These numbers are a little lower than the national average, but not by much.

Overall, a career as a welder pays pretty well. Especially considering that this is the median pay and not the highest pay welders can work up to receiving.

How Much Do Welders Make a Year?


  • How much does a welder in the lower 10% make? $29,470 per year
  • How much is a welder’s median salary? $42,490 per year
  • How much does a welder in the highest 10% make? $64,240 per year

How Much Do Welders Make a Month?


  • How much does a welder in the lower 10% make? $2,455‬ per month
  • How much is a welder’s median salary? $3,540 per month
  • How much does a welder in the highest 10% make? $5,353 per month

How Much Do Welders Make a Week?


  • How much does a welder in the lower 10% make? $541.20 per week
  • How much is a welder’s median salary? $726.40 per week
  • How much does a welder in the highest 10% make? $1,046.40 per week

How Much Do Welders Make an Hour?


  • How much does a welder in the lower 10% make? $13.53 per hour
  • How much is a welder’s median salary? $18.16 per hour
  • How much does a welder in the highest 10% make? $26.16 per hour

Welders Pay by Location


  • How much do welders make in Texas? $46,940 a year
  • How much do welders make in California? $47,910 a year
  • How much do welders make in Florida? $41,650 a year
  • How much do welders make in Arizona? $44,070 a year
  • How much do welders make in Colorado? $49,870 a year
  • How much do welders make in NC (North Carolina)? $42,620 a year

Welders Pay by Experience


  • How much do entry level welder’s make? $15.32 an hour
  • How much do welder’s make with 1–4 years of experience? $16.89 an hour
  • How much do welder’s make with 5–9 years of experience? $18.73 an hour
  • How much do welder’s make with 10–19 years of experience? $20.07 an hour
  • How much do welder’s make with 20 or more years of experience? $22 an hour

How Much Do Underwater Welders Make?

How much do underwater welders make? $72,500 to $200,000 a year

Underwater welders are professional welders that know how to weld and how to dive. They specialize in welding work that needs to be done on structures that are underwater. Underwater welders often work on repairing marine structures.

Because of the added specialization that underwater welders must have, they get paid more than other welders. They have to become professionals in two fields—welding and diving. Working as an underwater welder also comes with added dangers and necessary safety measures because they have to work in an underwater environment.

How Much Do Pipeline Welders Make?

How much do pipeline welders make? $69,841 to $133,500 a year

Pipeline welders specialize in welding pipes. Pipes are a major part of many infrastructures which is why many welders specialize in this area. Pipe welders have to know how to work with all kinds of pipes in all kinds of scenarios. They have to know how to lay, fit, and permanently bond pipes together.

How to Become a Welder


Step 1: Get a High School Diploma or GED

One of the reasons the welding profession is so great is because it doesn’t require long expensive years going through school.

The only thing you need in order to start working as a welder is to get your high school degree and get trained as a welder. There are even high school technical education courses you can take in welding. That way you can get your high school degree and your technical training done at one time.

Step 2: Get Technical Training

In order to work as a welder you have to learn the skill. Welding requires many technical skills. You can learn these skills by joining an apprenticeship program or by taking technical courses in high school or in college.

In your courses you’ll learn all about blueprint reading, creating blueprints, shop mathematics, mechanical drawing, physics, chemistry, metallurgy, electricity, computers, welding, soldering, brazing, machine operators, and programming computer-controlled machines.

Step 3: Become Licensed and Certified

At the end of all your technical courses you’ll receive certifications. The American Welding Society offers many certifications for welders. Depending on what kind of welding jobs you want to do might impact which certifications you need to get.

The Certified Welder certification, the Certified Welding Inspector certification, and the Certified Robotic Arc Welding certification are just a few examples of certifications you might need.

The Best Welding Schools

Much of welding school involves working in shops to gain practical experience and build manual skills. Welding school also teaches students soft skills they’ll need to have in the technical industry like, communication skills and technical writing.

There are many tech schools in the world that have great programs for prospective welders. Many community colleges near you often have technical courses you can take to start your career as a professional welder.

There are literally countless options out there for technical schools you could go to. Here are just a few popular welding schools you could possibly attend.

  • Institute for Printed Circuits
  • American Welding Society
  • Hobart Institute of Welding Technology
  • Lincoln Electric Welding School
  • Apex Technical School

How Long Does it Take to Become a Welder?

Welders can earn their technical degrees in as little as 1 and a half years. How long it takes to become a welder depends on the length of the program and courses you decide to take.

Some programs take longer than others to provide certification. So do your research into the programs available near you beforehand.

How Much Does it Cost to Become a Welder?

The national average for how much welding school typically costs is about $6,850. The price of tuition at welding school will of course depend on which school you go to.

What Do Welders Do?

Welders use both hand-held, remote-controlled, and computer-programmed tools and machines to join and cut metal parts. They also study blueprints and create specifications for the projects they work on. They have to know how to calculate dimensions properly and work with different tools and types of metals.

Welders can also specialize their skills. Some welders specialize in working with pipes, other welders can specialize in welding underwater, and some specialize specifically in cutting, soldering, and brazing.

  • read and create blueprints
  • calculate dimensions
  • inspect structures, materials, and equipment
  • maintain equipment
  • join metal parts together
  • fill holes

Skills Welders Need


Detail Oriented:

Welders cannot afford to make mistakes. The work they do is crucial to the integrity of the structures they work on. The work they do must be precise and complete. Flaws in their work can lead to disastrous ends.

Physical Stamina:

The work of a welder requires a lot of physical stamina and strength. Welders spend much of their workday on their feet and working with their hands. They need the physical strength and stamina to work for possibly long hours on their feet.

They also need physical dexterity in order to perform their jobs. In order to weld correctly they need a steady hand and coordination.

Blueprint Reading:

Welders have to be able to read and interpret blueprints. This requires special skills in spatial orientation. They need to be able to read a 2-dimensional piece of paper and envision its outline correctly in a 3-dimensional space.

Pros and Cons of the Welding Profession

Every profession comes with its own pros and cons. It’s up to you to decide what are deal breakers for you.

Some people love to work with their hands, making this a part of their personal pros list for a welding career. But other people might not love the idea of being on their feet so much, making this a part of their cons list for welding careers.

Pros Cons
welders can specialize their skills in many ways welding can be dangerous work at times
there are lots of options for training to become a welder welding work involves a lot of physical stamina and long hours on your feet
welding skills allow you to work for yourself if you want to some projects will involve working outdoors in all kinds of weather conditions
welding school isn’t typically as expensive or long as other degrees

Similar Occupations

The world of trade is rich with great professions that pay well and offer rich and fulfilling careers. There are many professions available in the technical industry. The technical industry is especially good for you to look into if you are interested in more hands-on careers.

Profession Median Salary What They Do
Assemblers and Fabricators $33,710 put assembly parts together to create a finished product
Boilermakers $63,100 put together, install, maintain, and repair boilers, vats, and other industrial liquid and gas holding vessels
Industrial Machinery Mechanics, Machinery Maintenance Workers, and Millwrights $52,860 take care of industrial machinery
Jewelers and Precious Stone and Metal Workers $40,870 design, create, repair, and inspect all kinds of jewelry and precious stones and metals
Machinists and Tool and Die Makers $45,750 manage the machines that create parts, instruments, and tools
Metal and Plastic Machine Workers $36,990 manage the machines that create metal and plastic parts
Plumbers, Pipefitters, and Steamfitters $55,160 manage the installation and repair of pipes and pipe-related systems
Sheet Metal Workers $50,400 create and install anything made of thin metal sheets


US Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers,” “Occupational Employment and Wages, Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers.”

The Balance Careers. “Average Salary Information for U.S. Workers,” by Alison Doyle.

PayScale. “Average Welder Hourly Pay.”

American Welding Society (AWS).

Career Trend. “How Much Do Underwater Welders Make a Year?” by Carolyn Gray.

ZipRecruiter. “Pipeline Welder Salary.”

Advanced Technology Institute. “Welding School Programs: What is it Like to go to Welding School?” “How Much Does Welding School Cost?”

Career Guide | How Much Do Vets Make?

dog wearing a cone

How much do vets make and what’s the process for how to become a vet? Both of these factors are things to consider before choosing a career as a veterinarian.

Explore this Career Guide:

Choosing a career can be really hard to do. There are so many factors to consider, like how much do vets make, how to become a veterinarian, how much does vet school cost, or how long does it take to become a veterinarian?

The best way to decide is to learn as much as you can about the veterinarian career and possibly job shadow if you can get a realistic feel of what the profession would be like.

Many people become interested in possibly becoming a veterinarian because they have a deep love for animals. Working as a vet is a great way to express that love as you’ll get to care for animals day in and day out.

How Much Do Vets Make?

Overall, veterinarians do very well financially. They have one of the highest paying jobs in the nation. This is partially due to the fact that veterinarians have a very specialized expertise. Vets also have to undergo lots of schooling, training, and clinical work in order to become vets. Both of these things add to the value of their expertise and thus the value of their work.

How Much Do Veterinarians Make a Year?


  • How Much Does a Veterinarians in the lower 10% Make? $58,080 per year
  • How Much is a Veterinarians’ Median Salary? $95,460 per year
  • How Much Does a Veterinarians in the highest 10% Make? $160,780 per year
How Much Do Veterinarians Make a Month?


  • How Much Does a Veterinarians in the lower 10% Make? $4,840‬ per month
  • How Much is a Veterinarians’ Median Salary? $7,955 per month
  • How Much Does a Veterinarians in the highest 10% Make? $13,398 per month
How Much Do Veterinarians Make a Week?


  • How Much Does a Veterinarians in the lower 10% Make? $963.6‬0 per week
  • How Much is a Veterinarians’ Median Salary? $1,958 per week
  • How Much Does a Veterinarians in the highest 10% Make? $3,038.40 per week
How Much Do Veterinarians Make an Hour?


  • How Much Does a Veterinarians in the lower 10% Make? $24.09 per hour
  • How Much is a Veterinarians’ Median Salary? $48.95 per hour
  • How Much Does a Veterinarians in the highest 10% Make? $75.96 per hour
Veterinarians Pay by Location


  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make in Texas? $125,280 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make in California? $116,440 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make in Florida? $97,490 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make in NYC (New York City)? $120,580 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make in Ohio? $110,110 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make in New Jersey? $125,110 a year
Veterinarians Pay by Experience


  • How Much Do Entry Level Veterinarians Make? $73,964 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make with 1–4 Years of Experience? $78,796 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make with 5–9 Years of Experience? $86,612 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make with 10–19 Years of Experience? $90,212 a year
  • How Much Do Veterinarians Make with 20 or More Years of Experience? $95,041 a year

How Much Do Companion Animal Veterinarians Make?

How much do companion animal veterinarians make? $110,000 a year

These are the types of veterinarians that work with pets, like dogs, cats, birds, ferrets, or rabbits. A companion animal vet might work in a vet clinic or a vet hospital. These vets help treat and take care of our household pets and help pet owners know how to best take care of their beloved pet’s physical wellbeing.

How Much Do Livestock Vets Make?

How much do food animal veterinarians make? $100,000 a year

A food animal veterinarian takes care of livestock and other farm animals that are being raised as a food source. Because the animals they work with are to become a food source one day, food animal veterinarians have the very important job of making sure they are healthy, sickness free, and safe for the public health. This means they might also work as food safety and inspection veterinarians to make sure livestock are being treated according to health codes and prevent and control animal diseases.

How Much Do Research Veterinarians Make?

How much do research veterinarians make? $122,268 a year

Some veterinarians work conducting research about animals, diseases, treatments, and cures. They might also work on research related to public health and safety and disease control amongst animals and people.

How Much Do Vet Techs Make?

How much do vet techs make? $28,900 a year

Vet techs have very versatile jobs. In many ways, they are similar to the medical technicians that work in human hospitals and clinics, except they specialize in working with animals. Vet techs assist veterinarians in all their work. They help conduct tests, administer treatment, and assist vets during surgery, dental care, and even sometimes grooming. Vet techs are also qualified to operate machinery and medical tools to perform necessary tests and treatments.

How Much Do Vet Assistants Make?

How much do vet assistants make? $26,100 a year

A veterinary assistant performs many of the same functions that a veterinary technician can do, but vet techs are usually qualified to do even more and operate more veterinary equipment. Vet assistants will often help give the animals staying at the clinic the care they need. Vet assistants monitor animal patients, clean and change bandages, and help handle animals during checkups and procedures.

How Much Do Zoo Vets Make?

How much do zoo vets make? $85,278 a year

Veterinarians can also work at zoos! These types of veterinarians need to be knowledgeable about all the kinds of animal species you find in a zoo. This means they need specialized knowledge and skills in a wide variety of wild and undomesticated animals. Zoo vets might provide dental care, surgeries, vaccinations, regular physical exams, disease prevention, and treatment, and help determine the animals’ diets and feeding schedules.

How to Become a Veterinarian

Step 1: Get a Bachelor’s Degree

In order to get into veterinary school and become a veterinarian, you’ll need to first get a bachelor’s degree. Some vet schools might not require a bachelor’s degree, but many vet schools accept applications from prospective students that already have a bachelor’s degree.

Your chances of getting accepted increase if you get a bachelor’s degree in a subject related to veterinary medicine. This includes courses in science, biology, chemistry, math, humanities, social science, and animal science.

To increase your chances of being accepted into a great vet school, it also helps if you have some experience working and volunteering in the veterinary field. You can find this type of work by helping vets at veterinary clinics, by getting experience with farm animals, or by volunteering at an animal shelter.

Step 2: Get a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Degree

Once you have the qualifications that will get you into a veterinary college, you can start working on getting your Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM or VMD) degree. The veterinary program you attend will need to be from a college that is accredited for teaching veterinary medicine.

At vet school, you’ll learn all about animal anatomy, animal physiology, diseases, diagnosis, treatments, and other veterinary practices. Most veterinary programs will have their students spend the first 3 years taking classes and the fourth year doing hands-on work in clinical rotations.

Step 3: Become Licensed to Practice with the State

When you’re ready to start practicing veterinary medicine, new vets must first become licensed with the state they work in.

Getting licensed as a veterinarian in the United States consists of completing an accredited veterinary program and then passing the North American Veterinary Licensing Exam. Some states will also require vets to pass another state licensing exam.

The veterinary licensing exams will test your knowledge as a veterinarian and test your knowledge of laws and regulations that all vets must know.

The Best Veterinarian Schools

Finding the best vet school is important. You need to receive the proper education in order to be a successful veterinarian and you need an accredited veterinarian program in order to get licensed to practice in the first place.

Veterinarian schools are highly competitive. When applying for vet schools be sure to look into the requirements they each have so you can do your best now to meet them.

How Long Does it Take to Become a Veterinarian?

To become an entry-level veterinarian on average takes about 8 years including the time it takes to get a bachelor’s degree and complete a typical vet program.

The road to becoming a vet can take more or less time though, depending on how long it takes to complete each program, and if you decide to undergo an accelerated program. By taking an accelerated program some vets can take as little as 6 years to complete their veterinary schooling, while the longest career paths to becoming a vet can take up to 12 years.

How Much Does it Cost to Become a Veterinarian?

How much you spend on becoming a veterinarian is going to all depend on which schools you decide to attend and how long you take completing each program. Some students might also receive scholarships and grants that can help pay their tuition for their bachelor’s degree and/or veterinary school.

On average though, the total cost of becoming a vet is about $135,000 with $44,000 being the low end of the spectrum and $320,000 being the higher end of the spectrum.

To become a veterinarian you will need to pay for tuition for both a 4-year bachelor’s degree and a 4-year veterinary program. Shop around at the schools you like to compare tuition prices before you decide where to spend your money.

What Do Veterinarians Do?

Veterinarians work primarily in animal health, but they sometimes work to protect public health as well where animals are concerned. They help keep animals healthy and treat animals who aren’t to help them get better. Veterinarians are the doctors, surgeons, nurses, and medical practitioners of the animal world.

They work in many settings like clinics, hospitals, schools, labs, zoos, reserves, animal sanctuaries, and farms. This means that some vets have to travel outside their place of work to administer their veterinary expertise to animals on-site.

A career as a veterinarian can be equally rewarding and trying. Vets care for animals, help save their lives, and keep them happy and healthy. But vets also care for animals with more serious cases. Some animals have to be euthanized or otherwise don’t survive, and this can be emotionally stressful for the veterinarians involved.

When considering a career as a veterinarian, remember that you will be working with animals, yes, but you will also be working with all the highs and lows that a doctor or nurse in any field might have to deal with.

  • perform regular checkups
  • diagnose health problems
  • make treatment plans
  • perform surgeries
  • perform teeth cleanings
  • administer vaccines
  • take x-rays
  • prescribe needed medication
  • euthanize animals where necessary
  • dress and bandage wounds

The daily life of a veterinarian consists of giving our pets checkups, making diagnoses, administering medications and treatments, and performing medical research and lab tests.

Veterinarians do a lot of the same things that human doctors do, but for animals. Vets, therefore, specialize in animal anatomy and physiology. Some vets specialize even further in the types of animals they treat like vets that work with farm animals vs pet animals.

Skills Veterinarians Need


Veterinarians often work alongside their coworkers to provide animals the medical care and treatment they need. In order to work well as a team, vets need effective communication skills. Vets also communicate a lot of important information to pet owners who need to know what’s going on with their animals and how to take care of their pets at home.


Like any medical profession, the career of a veterinarian requires compassion. The medical field can involve many sad days and happy days, so vets need adequate compassion to deal with the sad days when they come. For instance, vets need compassion when they have to tell a pet owner some bad news or when they go to euthanize a family pet that is old or sick.


Vets need physical dexterity to perform certain checkups, treatments, surgeries, and to deal with animals who are scared and not cooperating. Vets will sometimes need to practice holds and quick techniques so they can safely handle squirmy animals without hurting them or frightening them more.

Problem Solving:

Vets come across many unique problems working with animals. Because of this vets need to have keen problem solving, analytical, and decision-making skills. This will help them to tackle any new scenario that comes their way and figure out solutions to problems like how to administer a pill to a frightened dog.

Physical Stamina:

Veterinarians work with their hands. They have to manually lift animals onto the examination table, help hold animals down to administer their shots, and spend much of their day on their feet. This can be a real bonus for anyone that doesn’t wish to spend their entire workday sitting behind a desk, but it does mean vets need a certain amount of physical strength and stamina to get through a typical day.

Pros and Cons of the Veterinarian Profession

Like any other profession in the world, a career as a veterinarian comes with its own pros and cons. It’s up to you to decide whether these costs and benefits are worth it for you.

Overall, the costs of becoming a vet can be high but a career as a veterinarian can be an extremely rewarding profession.

Vets get to work with their community, with people, and with all kinds of animals every day. The work you do each day is always different and often comes with new and interesting challenges. Vets also often have the opportunity to enjoy a lot of professional independence in their practice. Many vets end up starting their own clinics and find a lot of success working for themselves. Not to mention working closely with animals is any animal-lovers dream.

Pros Cons
high salary might have to work irregular hours
promising job growth deal with death sometimes
get to interact with all kinds of animals every day vet schools are highly competitive
get to work with your hands, on your feet, and even in the field the cost of vet school can be expensive
the joy of helping animals and pet owners the work is very complex and technical

But just because you love animals, that doesn’t mean becoming a vet is the best for you. Vets have to do a lot of the dirty work when it comes to animal care. Most pets don’t love going to the vet, meaning vets end up dealing with animals that bite and scratch and growl.

Becoming a vet can also be very competitive and expensive, but the potential for job growth, professional independence, and high salaries might outweigh any doubts in this area for you.

Similar Occupations to Veterinarians

Does a career as a veterinarian intrigue you, but seems to be not quite what you’re looking for in a job? Then you might be interested instead in any of the following related professions. These jobs are similar to the veterinarian profession in some way like their field of expertise, workplace environment, or pay.

Profession Median Salary What They Do
Agricultural and Food Scientists $65,160 research agricultural, food production, and food safety regulations
Animal Care and Service Workers $24,990 provide animal care in a number of establishments that hold animals
Dentists $159,200 clean and treat patient’s teeth, gums, and mouth
Medical Scientists $88,790 research about human health
Microbiologists $75,650 research and study microorganisms
Optometrists $115,250 treat and perform checkups on the eyes
Physicians and Surgeons $208,000 perform treatments and surgeries on human patients
Veterinary Assistants and Laboratory Animal Caretakers $28,590 act as aids for veterinarians
Veterinary Technologists and Technicians $35,320 perform medical tests on animals
Zoologists and Wildlife Biologists $63,270 study and research wildlife and the ecosystem

Some of these jobs work with humans while others still work with animals. You might find that you’re interested in the medical field but would rather work with humans rather than animals. In that case, you could work in the field of human medicine.

Or maybe you are more interested in animals, but you don’t want to deal with the medical aspects of being a veterinarian. There are plenty of other animal-related jobs in the world that don’t involve medicine that you could also choose from to get your animal-loving fix.


US Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Veterinarians,” “Occupational Employment and Wages for Veterinarians.”

PayScale. “Average Veterinarian Salary.”

Career Explorer. “Veterinarian salary.”

Career Trend. “Pros & Cons of Being a Veterinarian,” by Catherine Capozzi.

The Balance Careers. “What Does a Veterinarian (Vet) Do?” by Dawn Rosenberg Mckay.

The Balance Careers. “What Is the Earning Capability for Veterinarians?” by Mary Hope Kramer. “How much does a Research Veterinarian make in the United States?” “Vet Tech Salary Information for 2017.” “How much does a Zoo Veterinarian make in the United States?”

How’s My Commute? A Look at the Cost of Commuting

someone driving

Explore this Guide for Commuters:

What Does Commute Mean?

Not already familiar with the word commute? Then you might be wondering what does commute mean? The commute definition is, “to travel back and forth regularly (as between a suburb and a city).”

You can define commute easily by putting it in a typical sentence like, “I commute to work every day on the train.” Commute is a verb that means to travel back and forth regularly. Most often, the word commute refers to the way someone regularly travels to their job every day.

What are the Costs of Commuting?

Some people are lucky enough to live close to their place of work while others are not so lucky. If you do have a long commute to and from work each day of the week then you might be paying for it in more ways than you realize.

Car Ownership

Car Ownership

It costs about $2,600 a year to own a car. When you own a vehicle you have to pay monthly car insurance, monthly car payments, gas to drive with, and you have to pay for regular car maintenance and upkeep. If something breaks down you have to pay for that too.

Many people are going to own a car whether you have a long commute to work or not. But the cost of car ownership and maintenance will increase the more you have to drive it just to get to and from your place of work. The overall value of your car also depreciates the more you drive it.

Gas Prices

Gas Prices

The price of gas is always fluctuating. In some years, the price of gas goes up and in others, the price of gas goes down.

How much you spend on gas is also going to depend on your car and what mileage it can get. But in general, most cars get the worst mileage during long commutes because they’re often stopped by heavy traffic flows. This causes your car to use up more gas than it would if your road to work wasn’t full of congested traffic.

Your Time

Average Commute Time: 30+ minutes

In fact, the average employee spends at least 30 minutes driving to and from work each day of the week. That’s almost a full workday spent just getting to and from your job.

And that’s not considering that some unlucky workers have to drive over 100 miles each way to get to their jobs and that’s usually during high traffic hours. Many more workers usually drive over an hour to work. Just think of all the extra time you’d have on your hands if you didn’t have to spend hours and hours commuting to work.

One way to check the time cost on your commute is to ask Google Assistant, Alexa, Siri, Bixby, or Cortana, “how’s my commute to work?” or “how’s my commute home?” before heading out the door. This will check the weather, traffic, and any accidents that might interrupt your commute.

The Environment

One of the impacts of commuting is something that affects us all—the environment.

Long commutes can increase pollution, wear out public roads faster, create heavy traffic congestion, and increase the risks of vehicular accidents on your community’s roads. In more ways than one, we all benefit as a community from shorter commutes and more employees working from home.

Your Health

Finding ways to save on your commute to work can actually be good for your physical and mental health as well.

Gallup did a survey of over 170,000 employees and they found that workers who commute more than 90 minutes to work have an average health index score of 63.9 while workers who only commute 10 minutes have a health index score of 69.2.

The bottom line is that long commutes aren’t good for you. They aren’t good for your car, they aren’t good for your personal health, they aren’t good for the environment and communities we live in, they aren’t good for your wallet, and they aren’t good for your productivity at the job you’re commuting to.

How to Save on Commutes

Don’t worry, there are plenty of things you can do to save on long commutes. There are alternatives that can help with some of the costs of commuting and there are ways to save on some of those costs.


Depending on how far you live from work, you could also potentially walk! This option might only be feasible if you live about a mile, give or take, from where you work. But walking can help you get some exercise in each day and can make your trips to and from work more pleasant.

The Best Commuter Backpacks:

Commuter backpacks for women or men are bags that have a light and useful design. This makes them easy to wear while jogging, biking, walking, or riding a scooter or motorcycle on your commute to work.

The best bags for commuting to work also have a useful pocket design for the things you need for work and possibly the things you need to clean up or get changed at work after an exercise-filled commute.


Osprey Packs Metron Backpack: $159.95


Thule Paramount Backpack: $139.95


The North Face Surge Pack: $129.00


Matein Travel Laptop Backpack: $29.99


TIMBUK2 Rogue Laptop Backpack: $39.99


Under Armour Voyager Backpack: $55.00


Jogging is another alternative way to get yourself to work each day. Jogging will get you to work faster than walking and will get you even more great exercise each day. With a full-time job, it can be hard to find time for working out. Why not use your trips to work and/or home from work to get in your daily exercise?


Commuter bikes come with a lot of extra benefits besides saving on gas. Using a commuter bicycle to commute to work can easily be your daily exercise too! A great commuter bike can help you get fit and get to work.

Biking also saves you tons of gas money, keeps the environment cleaner, and keeps your car from getting as much wear and tear. You’ll also be able to avoid dealing with traffic. On a bike, you’ll be able to pass every traffic jam.

The Best Commuter Bikes:

Selecting a bike is a personal preference. There are plenty of different bikes to choose from that provide different uses too. There are even electric commuter bikes that can help you expel less energy going longer distances to work.

  • Road bikes have a drop-handlebar and are designed for smooth pavement, are lightweight, and work best for on-road racing and biking.
  • Cyclocross bikes are a type of road bike made for both smooth pavement and gravel trails.
  • Touring bikes are a type of road bike designed for comfort during longer rides on paved roads.
  • Adventure road bikes is another hybrid of road bike that allows riders to easily bike on any type of road, path, or trail.
  • Triathlon bikes are designed for speed. They are used in triathlon races and are designed to be extremely aerodynamic.
  • Fitness bikes are road bikes that don’t have the drop-handlebar so riders can ride upright instead of crouched over.
  • Mountain bikes are designed for off-roading.
  • Hybrid bikes are a mix between a road bike and a mountain bike. They are comfortable to ride and can manage paved and unpaved roads.
  • Cruiser bikes are designed for comfortable, casual biking. They are best for shorter commutes or for getting around town comfortably and at a leisurely pace.

Another thing you’ll want to consider when getting a bike is whether you want flat handlebars, upright handlebars or drop handlebars. Drop handlebars are for riders who want speed and efficiency, upright handlebars are for riders who want to ride in a more comfortable position, and flat handlebars meet these bike riding types in the middle.


Scooters are another easy and casual way to get yourself to and from work. Scooters are handy for commuting to work too because they’re often foldable and therefore easier to take on the bus or store neatly near your desk.

The best commuter scooter is an electric commuter scooter because it’s kind to the environment, rechargeable and therefore kinder to your wallet, and has it’s own power to get you where you’re going without you having to do all the work.

The best electric scooter for commuting is going to probably be anywhere between $200 and $500, but there are plenty of inexpensive electric commuter scooters to choose from online as well.

The Best Commuter Scooters:

  • Hiboy MAX Electric Scooter
  • Razor EcoSmart Metro Electric Scooter
  • Segway Ninebot MAX Folding Electric Kick Scooter
  • UberScoot 1600w 48v Electric Scooter

The best commuter motorcycle is one that is comfortable to ride on long enough to get you to work. A good commuter motorcycle might also allow attachments and compartments so you can easily carry your work things with you while you ride.

Which commuter motorcycle you choose will also depend on how long your commute to work is. For instance, shorter work commutes are great for smaller, more lightweight motorcycles. But longer work commutes usually do better with larger motorcycles that are easier to sit on for longer stretches of time.

The Best Commuter Motorcycles:

  • Hyundai Grom
  • Piaggio Vespa
  • Kawasaki Versys
  • Suzuki SV650
  • Yamaha MT-07
Commuter Cars

Is your car a gas guzzler? If so, then shopping for the best commuter car might be financially wise. Do some research about which cars make the best commuter cars and find a make and model that will work best for you. You want something that gets great gas mileage, handles well on the highway and is comfortable and easy to drive in the busy city.

In your car research and shopping don’t forget to consider cars that are better for the environment and that don’t cost as much to maintain. Some cars handle depreciation and wear and tear better than others.

The Best Commuter Cars:

  • Hyundai Ioniq
  • Chevy Sonic
  • Kia Rio
  • Volkswagen Jetta
  • Subaru Impreza
  • Hyundai Accent
  • Honda Fit

Save on gas by putting together a carpool with your fellow coworkers. Start by asking around at work for who would also be interested in getting in on the carpool.

Then, make a scheduled plan for the carpool rotation, the routes for who gets picked up first and last, whose driving on what days, and make a group chat somewhere with everyone’s contact information.

With some carpools, you might also need to figure out the costs. There might be some passengers that don’t drive or some drivers’ cars might get worse gas mileage than others. Some carpools work just fine with different drivers taking turns being the ones to drive everyone while other carpools work better if you calculate the costs of gas and Venmo each other the money.

Public Transportation

Take advantage of public transport whenever you can! The fees for bus or train fare are usually far less than what you would be paying to drive your own car. Some public transit systems even offer passes or cards that will help you save on fare as a frequent passenger.

Work from Home

Working from home is probably the best way to save on commuting because you stop commuting all together! You can also work from home some days of the week just to ease up on having to travel quite as much. Whether you can work from home will mostly depend on things like your ability to be productive at home, if you can set up an office space at home, and if your work can successfully be done from a remote location instead of at work.


You could also relocate to be closer to your place of work. This is easier said than done for some households, but if you have a really long commute to work, relocating to be closer might be worth at least thinking about. Depending on the kind of place you work in, you could also potentially ask for a transfer to a store, branch, or office building that is closer to where you already live.

Commuter Benefits

Commuter benefits are a savings program that some employees offer their workers. It’s a program that helps employees save on their commute to work. It might help pay for gas, public transit, rideshares, and even parking.

Employers also benefit from offering their workers commuter benefits. By offering commuter benefits, company’s can save on taxes. Ask your place of work about potentially joining a commuter benefits program to help you both start saving!

Calculate the ROI of Commuting

Figure out your Return On Investment (ROI) for commuting. Commuting to work is an investment. You put time and money into commuting to work so that you can have a stable job, income, and essential employee benefits like health insurance.

Sit down and crunch the numbers to make sure your salary and job benefits are worth all the costs of commuting. Here’s how you calculate the return on investment of commuting:

(Salary – Cost of Commuting) / Cost of Commuting = ROI of Commuting

This formula will show you how much your job is paying you back for the cost of commuting in percentage form.

Things to Do During Your Commute

For some of us, a commute to work is just inevitable. Fortunately, there are lots of ways to make your commute more worthwhile and stay busy on the long drive.

  • listen to music
  • listen to podcasts
  • listen to audiobooks
  • make some phone calls to catch up with family and friends
  • get caught up on the news
  • use the commute home to run some errands
  • do the daily commuter crossword

kove commuter

Kove Commuter 2: $209.99

Make your commute more fun by getting a Kove Commuter Speaker. This wireless, Bluetooth speaker is a unique stereo system that can split in half. The cylindrical shape is also optimized for 360-degree surround sound. You can even use it for a better speakerphone!

If your car doesn’t have great speakers or Bluetooth capabilities don’t worry, you can just get a Kove Commuter portable speaker system.

otterbox commuter phone case

Otterbox Commuter Series: $30.95 to $50.95

It might also be worthwhile to get a great commuter phone case. Otterbox has an entire commuter series of phone cases for Apple, Samsung, Motorola, and LG devices. A commuter phone case has a sleek design so they aren’t too clunky to handle on the go. But commuter phone cases are also very protective so your phone stays safe and unharmed while you travel.


It Still Runs. “How Far Do Americans Drive to Work on Average?” by David Harris.

Credit Donkey. “Gas Price History,” by Kim P.

Slide Share. “Bluebook of Maruti Suzuki.”

Edmunds. “Depreciation Infographic: How Fast Does My New Car Lose Value?” by Edmunds.

Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. “Fact #915: March 7, 2016 Average Historical Annual Gasoline Pump Price, 1929-2015.”

The Balance. “How Much Does Commuting Cost the Average American? Plus, strategies to save.” by Rachel Morgan Cautero

Smart Asset. “3 Costs of Your Commute to Work.” by Dan Rafter.

Well Kept Wallet. “The Real Cost of Commuting,” by Amy Beardsley.

Merriam-Webster Dictionary. “Commute.”

Century Cycles. “Bicycle Types: How to Pick the Best Bike for You.”

Career Guide | How to Become a Medical Assistant

medical assistant at work

When exploring new careers it can be helpful to understand the steps necessary to enter into a profession.

Explore this Career Guide:

About Medical Assistants

The primary function of medical assistants is to assist in the daily functions of healthcare facilities. The duties of a medical assistant are both administrative and clinical. Though some medical assistants can also specialize in certain areas of medicine as well like optometry or podiatry.

Different Kinds of Medical Assistants

Just like with any medical career, there are a lot of opportunities for specialization as a medical assistant. There are so many parts of the human body that need specialized attention from professionals with the right set of skills. These medical specialists also require the specialized help of medical assistants who know what they’re doing.

Administrative Medical Assistants

Medical assistants manage a lot of the office work around a medical facility. They are in charge of files, records, appointments, scheduling, and any other clerical type work that might need to be done.

  • record patient history
  • record patient personal info
  • schedule appointments
  • manage medical records
  • manage electronic health records (EHRs)
  • use EHR software
  • handle insurance forms
  • answer telephones
  • medical coding
Clinical Medical Assistants

Depending on where they work and how much training they have, medical assistants might also practice some basic medicine. Some medical assistants work in labs doing tests or doing minor procedures like changing bandages or drawing blood.

  • measure vitals, like blood pressure
  • help physicians perform routine exams
  • administer shots or medication
  • perform lab tests
  • clean medical equipment
  • x-rays
  • assist in surgeries
  • change bandages
  • draw blood
  • remove stitches
Other Medical Assistants

There are many different expertise within the medical field and medical assistants can specialize in many of them. Medical assistants can work in different fields of medicine, for different kinds of doctors, and for different types of healthcare facilities.

If you are interested in becoming a medical assistant and have an area of study you prefer, there’s a chance you could work for a doctor or medical facility that specializes in that area. Here are just a few examples of medical fields you could choose from:

  • Psychiatrist
  • Nephrologist
  • Optometrist
  • Dermatologist
  • Neurologist
  • Dentist
  • Pediatrician
  • Cardiologist
  • Obstetrician/Gynecologist

How to Become a Medical Assistant

To become a medical assistant you’ll need to learn about topics like anatomy, physiology, and chemistry. Start learning these topics while in high school by signing up for classes that can help you later in your medical assistant training.

Step 1: High School Diploma

The very first thing you’ll need to do in order to become a medical assistant is to finish high school. A career as a medical assistant is one of the few careers left that doesn’t require a college degree as a must-have. But that doesn’t mean you can forego your general education as well.

While many employers looking to hire medical assistants won’t care if you’ve been to college, they will care if you have a high school diploma or GED.

Step 2: Medical Assistant School

After you’ve received your high school diploma you can go straight to getting a job as a medical assistant. But if you really want to up your chances of getting a job, or to specialize in a certain area, then you can complete a medical assistant program.

Medical Assistant programs are only 1 to 2 years to complete. They’re short and focus on everything you will need to know how to do as a medical assistant.
Having a medical assistant program under your belt will make you exceptionally hirable. That, and the time and cost of medical assistant school are still a lot less than a 4-year college degree.

Step 3: Medical Assistant Certifications

As a medical assistant, some states or employers will require you to also receive a special medical assistant license or certification.

Medical assistants can get their certification with the National Commission for Certifying Agency. This agency offers the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA), Registered Medical Assistant (RMA), National Certified Medical Assistant (NCMA), Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA), and the Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA).

How Long Does it Take to Become a Medical Assistant?

The career of a medical assistant is one job that doesn’t require a degree. No degree jobs are great for students who want to start their career path in medicine as soon as possible, or who don’t want to spend years of their lives and thousands of dollars on college.

You can potentially get a job as a medical assistant right after high school! This means it potentially takes no time at all to become a medical assistant.

You will of course need to be trained on-the-job as a medical assistant for whatever healthcare facility hired you, but a 4-year degree is not necessary.

How to Become a Certified Medical Assistant

Become a certified medical assistant by visiting the American Association of Medical Assistants (AAMA) website to sign up to take the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) exam. Passing this exam is how you can become a certified medical assistant.

The CMA exam includes 200 questions that are given in 4 different 40 minutes time frames.

In order to qualify to take the CMA exam you will have to meet one of the following exam requirements: Be a student or graduate of a CAAHEP- or ABHES-accredited medical assisting program or be recertifying as a medical assistant.

How Much Does it Cost to Become a Medical Assistant?

Medical assistants can potentially get jobs without going to medical assistant schools. If you are able to get hired as a medical assistant without having to go to medical assistant school then becoming a medical assistant will cost you nothing!

More than likely you’ll still want to complete an accredited medical assistant program and get certified. The tuition for a medical assistant program ranges from $1,200 to $4,200. Basically, you’ll probably spend about the tuition costs of one or two semesters.

How to Become a Registered Medical Assistant

To become a registered medical assistant (RMA), you’ll want to take the RMA exam. Before you can take the RMA exam you’ll have to graduate from an accredited medical assistant program first.

You want your medical assistant program to be accredited with either the CAAHEP or the ABHES. The great thing about the RMA certification though, is that it’s flexible and available for some candidates who didn’t complete an MA program.

You can become a registered medical assistant if you’ve graduated from a US military medical program or if you have working experience already as a medical assistant. This flexibility is why many medical assists like to get their RMA.

How to Become a Medical Assistant Online

Find an accredited medical assistant program near you that also offers online courses. Many of them do! The Ultimate Medical Academy is one of these schools. You can take all your classes and exams online so you can get trained as a medical assistant from home.

The great benefit of online medical assistant classes is that you can take the course no matter where you are. This way you can even take a medical assistant course from a college or university that is out of state without having to move away for just a year or two.

How to Become a Medical Examiner Assistant

A medical examiner is a public officer who performs autopsies, postmortems, and investigates the cause of someone’s death. A medical examiner assistant is someone who assists a medical examiner to perform autopsies and sometimes work with organs and tissues.

To become a medical examiner assistant you’ll first need to learn the requirements of your state or potential employer. Some places will require you to have a bachelor’s degree in a related field, like biology, chemistry, or forensic science.

Medical examiner assistants also need to get licensed by the state board and become certified with the American Board of Pathology.

Medical Assist Program

A medical assist program or medical assist school is any program or school course that teaches students all they need to know to work as medical assistants. Medical assist programs and schools must also be accredited by the CAAHEP or the ABHES so that graduates can become certified, registered, and licensed medical assistants.

How Much Does A Medical Assistant Make?

Medical assistants make a median salary of $34,800 a year. According to recent studies, a medical assistant’s salary is about average for most Americans, leaning on above average. Medical assistants can expect to make anything between $25,820 and $48,720 a year in annual salary.


US Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Medical Assistants.”

American Association of Medical Assistants. “How To Become A Certified Medical Assistant.”

Medical Assistant Career Guide. “How to Become a Registered Medical Assistant (RMA).” “Medical Administrative Assistant: Learn How We Can Help You Succeed.”

Career Trend. “How to Become a Medical Examiner Assistant,” by Megan Torrance.

Smart Asset. “The Average Salary by Age in the U.S.,” by Amelia Josephson.

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