Archives for November 2011

Starting a Business – Is it for you?

If you’ve ever thought of starting your own business, please read on…

Little in most people’s work experience prepares them for the demands of starting and running a successful business. The rewards are there, true. These include the psychic benefit of being your own boss. But being the boss means you have to pay the bills, and worry about meeting payroll.

True, the financial rewards of owning your own business are unique. The profit you make is yours, at least after taxes. And business owners have tax deductions that others may not have. They have the privilege of deciding for themselves how the business is run. But the flip side is that business owners take the risks.

Running and building a business requires time, care, knowledge and attention. It is really a full-time (if not seven day a week) job. As I’ve written elsewhere, the easiest thing to do as a business owner is make mistakes. Successful business owners have learned to be careful,  attend to details, know their market and  competition, and to hire and supervise the right support staff. Most importantly, they know when and how to get qualified legal and financial advice.

Seeking a Loan Modification

I came across an old Wall Street Journal Op-Ed piece from January 2010, “Why Mortgage Modification Isn’t Working” (Jan 20, 2010) in which the author notes that only 1% of mortgage modifications under the federal HAMP program had been successful. Since then, a lot of press and a lot of attention has been given to the problem, but although there has been some progress, it does not appear that major changes have taken place.

As of this writing (November 2011), the road to mortgage modification success is bumpy, uneven, winding and difficult. A recent survey I conducted among colleagues revealed that some are granted relief while others equally or more qualified are denied without rational explanation. My own experience as a foreclosure mediator confirms this. But with the right guidance, a healthy skepticism and realistic expectations, the process is still worth undertaking, for those whose financial situation makes them viable candidates. If you believe a mortgage modification is worthwhile for you, please link to our QuickList of 6 pointers to follow.

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