Archive for August 2010

Calculate how much you need to start your ideal business, and then figure out how much you have. If you have all the cash you need, you’re very fortunate. If you don’t, you need to start playing with the numbers and deciding what you can do without. The checklist below will serve as a guide for creating a startup budget for your gift basket business. Prices for supplies and equipment are estimated ranges and will vary depending on features, sources and whether they’re new or used. What you spend may vary because you may already own some items, such as office equipment or a computer. Don’t forget to also factor in rent (unless you’re homebased), business license, utility deposits, insurance, any legal and accounting services and your grand opening advertising.

  • Specialty equipment (including work space fixtures, work tables, crafting tools, shrink wrapper, heat gun, signage and security system): $980 to $14,030
  • Storage fixtures and hardware (including storage shelves and cabinets): $100 to $500
  • Store equipment/fixtures for retail operations (including special displays, display shelving, cash register, counter, marking guns, floor gondolas, pegboard, hooks, showcases and wall gondolas): Anywhere from $0 if you already have these items to $9,895
  • Retail supplies (including cash register tape, shopping bags, gift boxes and sales tags and/or labels): up to $1,510
  • Office furniture, equipment and supplies (including computer and peripherals, fax, phone system, furniture, business stationary and miscellaneous supplies): $3,800 to $13,670
  • Packaging/shipping equipment (including hand truck, high-speed tape dispenser, carton stapler, electronic scale and paper shredder): $350 to $1,490
  • Packaging/shipping supplies (including sealing tape, boxes, mailing labels, cushioned mailers and packing materials): $505 to $1,200
  • Gift basket supplies (including baskets/containers, packing materials, decorative materials, shrink-wrap and/or cellophane and product/gifts): $1,675 to $28,500. The range is based on how much you spend on the products and gifts you put into your basket.


$19.95 a month with La Bella Baskets!

Why Everyone Needs a Home Business
By Sandy Botkin

This may be a decade of tremendous corporate profits and economic growth, but for the vast majority of North Americans, the `90s were a dismal, uphill climb. And many economists believe that this next, new millennium won’t be getting better any time soon.

Changing business and government attitudes are the reason. There has seemingly been more anti-business legislation in the last decade than in any other this century. Stronger employment and labor laws, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, safety laws, much tougher laws for discharging workers, more liabilities for lawsuits, Disabilities Act (which is creating immense numbers of lawsuits), along with higher minimum wages and fringe benefits.

Just reading this list is exhausting.

While these acts have beneficial and protective aspects, they have also encouraged businesses to move their facilities. That “sucking sound” popularized by Ross Perot is not just down to Mexico, but elsewhere as well. The result has been a dramatic loss of heavy industry in Canada and the US.

The young and the middle-aged alike are realizing that their dream of “having a job with a company forever” is an illusion. Companies have been downsizing, rightsizing and capsizing for some time now, and they continue to do so–more now than ever before. Even the federal and provincialgovernments are getting into the act with layoffs and attrition of jobs.

In addition to all this uncertainty and mutual lack of loyalty between companies and employees, even the workers who do keep their jobs have no guarantee of promotions due to the shrinking number of management positions. These circumstances aggravate the already tryingly long commutes in rush hour traffic and increasingly typical frustrated boss–spelled backwards, that double S-O-B.

Finally, if all this isn’t bad enough, under recent tax laws employees are shafted more than ever with limits and thresholds for their employee deductions and higher social security tax limits. This results in more couples working than ever before and, on many occasions, working at more than one job. It is now almost impossible to have only one job in the family and make ends meet! Today, many households need three incomes just to survive.

Sadly, even having more than one job does not produce any major positive effect on most people’s bank accounts. Why? Because of tax laws. This was well illustrated in 1994 by Jane Bryant Quinn in her Woman’s Day article on “How to Live on One Salary.”

Where The Money Goes

Ms. Quinn’s example assumed that a man was earning $40,000 per year. His wife (we will call her Lori) wasn’t working. They had more month than money. (Sound familiar?) Lori subsequently got an administrative job for $15,000 per year. You would think this would improve the family’s financial situation, but when Ms. Quinn examined the economics of getting this extra income, the results were startling!

Lori had to pay federal and provincial taxes on her new income. Since they filed jointly, the family’s combined income was what established their tax bracket. She paid $4,500 in new taxes, most of which was non-deductible, for federal and provincial income tax.

Lori had old age security withheld from her paycheck at the rate of 7.65 percent, which amounted to an additional nondeductible amount of $1,148 being extracted from her salary. She also had to commute to work 10 miles a day round trip, which is probably conservative for most people. This resulted (in 1995) in nondeductible commuting costs of $696.

Lori also had some child care expenses, which give a partial tax credit. Ms. Quinn figured that the amount spent over and beyond the tax credit was $4,250 per year.

Lori also ate out each day with colleagues, spending an average of $5 per day, five days a week. This results in a nondeductible expense of $1,250 a year. (I would love to know where she ate for only $5.)

Now that Lori has a job, she has to have professional clothing–this means a hefty dry cleaning bill. Ms. Quinn assumed that Lori’s increased expenses here amounted to an extra $1,000 per year, nondeductible, of course.

Finally, with both spouses working, Lori wasn’t in the mood to cook dinner every night. They bought more convenience foods and ate out more frequently. This resulted in increased food costs of a nondeductible $1,000 per year at minimum.

Add it all up and Lori’s take-home pay was a paltry $1,156 a year, for which she had to put up with a daily commute, an unpleasant boss and corporate hassles. (See the following summary of all these numbers, so you can do the math for yourself.)

Gross Income $15,000
State and Federal Taxes -4,500
Social Security Taxes -1,148
Car Expenses – 696
(at 29cpm-50 miles a week)
Child Care -4,250
Lunches at the Job -1,250
Business Clothing & Drycleaning -1,000
Higher food expenses (eating -1,000
out, snack foods, etc.)
Net take-home pay: $1,156

No wonder more and more people are starting home-based businesses. In fact, there are currently an estimated 30 million people working from their homes. This number is expected to more than triple, to 97 million, by the year 2000, and to keep on growing. This has become and will continue to be one of the greatest mass movements in the U.S.

Why a Home-Based Business Makes So Much “Cents”

There are many reasons why so many people are favoring home-based over traditional business.

There is no commute (unless you have a really big home), no boss, little if any chance of lawsuits, much lower overhead, no employees (or few), and far fewer government restrictions. In fact, many of the laws previously cited don’t apply to small firms with few or no employees. It is for these reasons, according to Entrepreneur magazine, that 95 percent of home-based businesses succeed in their first year and achieve an average income of $50,250 per year with many earning much more.

If everyone in the U.S. who is employed full-time got a part-time business and used the strategies I suggest, each employee could easily reduce his or her taxes from $2,000 to $10,000 each year.

There are really two sets of tax laws in this country. One is for employees, and it allows deductions for individual retirement accounts, 401(k)s (if you have one set up by your company), interest and property taxes on your home (which some in Congress want to do away with), and charity. Then there are the laws for home-based business people who conduct their business either full- or part-time. They can deduct, with proper documentation, their house, their spouse and even children (by hiring them), their business vacations, their cars, and their food with colleagues. They can also set up a pension plan that makes any government plan seem paltry by comparison.

For Lori–and for you–the meaning of all this is simple: Lori earned $15,000 in salary as an employee, but took home only $1,156. She could have netted the entire $15,000 had she earned it in a home-based business! This is an increase of almost 13 times her take-home pay as an employee.

Notice that Lori is not spending dramatically more money than she is currently spending. She would eat out anyway, go on trips and drive her car the same as before. By having a home-based business, however, many of her expenses become deductible. This concept is known as “redirecting expenses.” With a home-based business, she can now deduct some of the expenses that she is incurring anyway.

Renegade Strategy: If you don’t have a home-based business, start one!

In addition to all the benefits mentioned above, Congress will subsidize you while you are growing your home-based business. If your home-based business produces a tax loss in the first year or so, you can use that tax loss against any other income you have. It can be used against wages earned as an employee, dividends, pensions, or interest income–or you can use the loss against your spouse’s earnings if you file a joint return.

If the tax loss exceeds all your income for this year, no problem. You can carry back the loss two years and get a refund from the IRS for up to the last two years of income taxes paid, or you can carry over the loss twenty years. You read it right: You can offset up to 20 years of income!

Here’s an example:

Mike earns $50,000 in a job with the government. If he starts a home-based business that generates a tax loss of $10,000, he only pays tax on $40,000.

Renegade Tip: You can never lose a properly documented business deduction.

In fact, if everyone in the U.S. who is employed full-time got a part-time business and used the strategies I suggest, each employee could easily reduce his or her taxes from $2,000 to $10,000 each year. If all employees in the U.S. did this, the tax bite of the IRS would be reduced by a whopping estimated 300 billion dollars annually. Of course, Congress would have to change the laws for this to occur.

Renegade Strategy: Get LUCK–Labor Under Correct Knowledge.

Can You Succeed In a Home Based Business?

Research has constantly shown that it is rarely the business that determines success or failure. It is usually the business owner. Why does one person succeed and another fail at the same business?

Two words–Knowledge and Action.

Some people want the benefits of having their own business, but they don’t take action. The result is business failure.

Then there are the people who are always working. They take action all day but still fail. The reason is that they are not taking the correct actions, the knowledgeable actions, that will bring the desired results. Again, business failure.

It’s like drilling for oil. If you set up a drilling rig in your back yard, it is going to fail at producing oil unless your back yard is in Texas or Alaska. The same rig in a good oil field will produce a gusher, because it was placed where oil was known to exist.

The point is that most people who get excited about starting their own home-based business do so without all the necessary knowledge. Consequently, many people quit before they acquire, through experience, the knowledge they need, without realizing that they are getting substantial tax breaks. This leads to another strategy. . . .

Renegade Strategy: Learn to duplicate the success of others.

Duplicating the strategy of others is much quicker and more effective than going to the school of hard knocks. It is also known as modeling, which is well-illustrated by the way The McDonald Corporation blazed a trail to success that many have since followed.

In the early 1950s, McDonald’s and other start-up companies discovered that they could grow many times faster than the conventional firms through franchising. Instead of the company investing millions of dollars to build new stores, they let independent franchisees do it for them.

It seemed like a great idea, but at first no one figured out how to make it succeed on a consistent basis; therefore, the media attacked relentlessly and continually. News articles featured destitute families who had lost their life savings through franchising schemes. Virtually every state attorney general in the U.S. condemned the new marketing method. Some congressmen even tried to outlaw franchising entirely.

Over the years, however, Ray Kroc and his management team at McDonald’s developed a turnkey franchise business system that produced consistent results for virtually anyone who bought a McDonald’s franchise. The newfound success–from the system–turned public perception of franchising around. Today, virtually every franchise business models–to some extent–the franchise business system created by McDonald’s, making franchising one of the most respected ways of doing business in the world.

Modeling is simply learning what other successful people have done to achieve success in a specific area, and then doing the same thing. Someone said that “education is the shortcut to experience.” With modeling, you literally leverage your own learning with the collective years of learning through experience of many others. Modeling the success of others saves both time and money and reduces frustration and stress.

The light at the end of the tunnel, for you and millions of others today, is the financial opportunity that starting your own business offers. If you have one going already, then make sure you are enjoying the many financial advantages to which your smart choice entitles you. The tax advantages alone can make a home-based business the single best financial move you could ever make.


Job prospects are declining and will continue to do so. Promotional opportunities to management within major companies are also shrinking.
Traditional businesses have higher risks than those associated with home-based businesses.
You will never get rich unless you reduce your taxes to the legal minimum.
Everyone should have a home-based business immediately!
You can never lose a properly documented business deduction. If necessary, you can always carry business losses three years or carry forward all business losses twenty years.

If you’re going to do something with your time to help meet your goals, why not put that time into something that will get you closer to meeting your goals than what you are doing now?

A year from now… Will you still be looking for something to supplement your income? Will you be building a business that gives YOU raises from your consistent efforts?

Two years from now… Will you have achieved NEW management levels? Will you be proud of what you are building for yourself and your family?

Three years from now… Will you have a chance to take trips with your family that you only dream of now?

Four years from now… Will you be earning the income that your truly desire? Most people work consistently now with a 9 to 5 job, but 4 years later… Are still not getting ahead?

Hmmm… Interesting…

Why not give La Bella Baskets a shot?

One of my new team mates sent me this e-mail. I thought it was so sweet that I wanted to share it.  I think it also show’s why people why want to work from home too. LBB rocks!

“Hi TaVona! Thanks for e-mail. I really would like to talk to someone that is currently doing this, and how they like it.

First off, congrats on the baby! My son just turned 1 on Aug. 5th – aren’t they the best? My fiance and I both don’t want to work away from home; I hate missing out on all those special childhood memories! I happened upon this site, and immediately thought of about 10 people that I know would utilize this around holidays and birthdays, and it is so affordable! I think the 20$ a month fee is very do-able in this economy…

I really wanted to get involved in something that would allow me to (eventually) stay at home with my kids. I absolutely HATE my job I have now, but it pays the bills, so if I can get involved in something that does that for me, why not jump right in?

How long have you been involved with LBB? What kind of advertising do you personally use that you find works well? I was thinking about just posting fliers at Cub, Caribou, my laundromat, etc. Have you tried these ways to do outside advertising, and if so, have they worked for you? Any additional info would be helpful in starting out 🙂 I guess at this point, I am so overwhelmed with all the information, that I don’t know where to start, and what would be the most productive. Hope to talk to you soon!”

As a mom you have kids running around the house. Some of them may be yours while others may not be, but that’s ok because your kids will be where you can see them.

If you have kids that want to help mommy with her business or if you have kids that want to make money, then you should allow them to help. It will help them have an understanding of business and it will help them with responsibility.

There are so many things your kids can do to help you with your business. What they can do depends on your business, but there is always something you can come up with. Make sure you give them things that are age appropriate and make sure they understand what you want them to do.

Here are a few suggestions that will work with most businesses.

1. If you like to hand out flyers, consider having your children go door to door placing a flyer in the handle of the screen door. Make sure you explain what the sign no solicitations means so they don’t place a flyer on a door that says that.

2. If you send out packages to your customers, you can have your kids help you pack the boxes. Depending on the age of your children, you may need to check each box before it goes out, but they’ll still feel like they helped.

3. Preparing envelopes to include in your packages is another task your kids can do for you. They can prepare the envelope in its entirety or you can have everything prepared and they can put them in the envelopes for you.

4. If your kids are older and enjoy the computer and the internet, you could train them how to do some of your online tasks. Article marketing, blog posts, and email management are just a few of the tasks they can handle. Step by step instructions will make it easier for them to handle.

You need to remember that your kids want to spend time with you. When you have a business to run that can be a challenge. The best way to make it work is to have them help you run your business.

Depending on the age of your kids, you may be able to find the perfect task for them to handle. When you can work side by side with them you will all have fun and you’ll be able to accomplish what you set out to do each day and still spend that quality time with your kids that you all crave.

College students, homemakers, retired or just want to make some extra money without working hard I have a great opportunity for you to own your own business, small start-up cost of only $1.97!

Even if you have never been involved in a gifting business before, you will find the training provided to be easy to understand and simple to follow and implement. All the work has been done for you. You just access the tools and go for it!  Everything has been prepared for you. All you do is follow our simple marketing guidelines for creating a profitable gift basket business.

I’m a Christian Work at Home Mom!

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Why So Many People Are Joining?

We offer bi-monthy pay. We fulfill your orders. We create the gift baskets. We create a beautiful website for you. We help you market your gifting business. We carry all the inventory. We ship to your gift recipients. We operate online, so you can, too. We continuously add new gift baskets to your store. We partner with you to make it simple to succeed. We don't require you to buy products. We do not have quotas. We do not ask you to collect money from your customers

Learn More About La Bella Baskets!

La Bella Baskets has weekly national Team Training calls that include product information, tips to succeed, interviews with La Bella Baskets consultants, sponsoring support, and much more. See you on the call!

Hosted by: Mia Florides, La Bella Baskets Co-Founder

Date: Every Tuesday night

Time: 6pm pacific time
7pm mountain time
8pm central time
9pm eastern time

Conference Dial-In: 1-218-862-1300

Conference Code: 863799

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