Should You Really Be Using Organic Supplements?

There appears to be a move in the health aware community towards the utilization of herbal or natural supplements instead of the various medicines that can be prescribed. There are things that you have to be aware of if you’re contemplating taking this step.

The main difference between a drug and a dietary supplement

A drug is a chemical substance that’s intended as well as manufactured to prolong life, treat a health condition, improve quality of life or modify the function of some reaction in the human body. Most natural supplements are classified as health supplements, not drugs. They aren’t able to make the same therapeutic claims that drugs are. The intention is for them to be taken as a health supplement not as a replacement for any food or even medicine.

Drugs are created through a process that removes any potentially harmful chemical substances and substances from the animal or even plant product that forms the base of the drug. They are also frequently synthesized to avoid the accidental introduction of these potentially harmful substances. Herbal supplements make use of the crude herbs and thus do not go through the refinement procedure and, as a result, a few of the potentially harmful substances may enter the supplements.


There are an increasing number of concerns from the healthcare community as to the increased use of herbal supplements. This is due to the amount of herbal medicines on the market, some of which are fake supplements. It is thought that these concerns might be set to rest by the introduction of a registration of all natural supplements with the correct authorities thus making certain the proper quality and classification of the dietary supplements as well as an avenue for consumer complaints in the event of a supplement causing a condition to get worse.

The benefits

With all this having been said, it’s worth noting the potential benefits to the consumption and use of herbal or natural supplements like green coffee extracts, ginko biloba, echinacea and forskolin extract is worthwhile. The majority of users of those dietary supplements report an improvement with health following consistent use over a period of time.


It is usually better to make sure that you talk to your physician prior to adding any herbal medicines to your diet. If there is any concern that the supplement will interfere with medication that you are taking or perhaps a condition from which you suffer, then your doctor will be the one to advise you of this and warn you against using the health supplement in question. Particular herbal supplements can cause liver damage and could worsen pre-existing heart, liver or even kidney issues. The directions for use on herbal supplements are just as important as the ones on prescription drugs. Overdosing or incorrect use can have serious consequences which are easily avoided through simply doing as directed.

Do not replace standard medication with herbal supplements. Although the producers may claim that their supplement can help with certain conditions it is never advisable to cease standard treatment in favor of the actual herbal supplement.

Your health is precious. Make sure that you look after it.


Ice Cream Filled Donuts – Holey Donuts!

I have to tell you about this donut shop I tried a couple weeks back.  It’s just a little hole in the wall donut place in NY, but they have some amazing stuff.  Here’s a little blurb from their website.

Ice Cream Filled Donuts New! Ice Cream Filled Donuts!

At Holey Donuts anything is possible! Now you can have any donut filled with Vanilla Ice Cream and your choice of frosting’s and toppings! We actually remove the donut filling and replace it with premium low fat vanilla ice cream!Select from our amazing ice cream filed assortments on this page. Mix and match Ice Cream filled and /or regular donuts its up to you.Our new lower minimum is any 2 boxes of 6 donuts for frozen Fedex shipping. Our donuts arrive fully finished in a special cooler packed with dry ice and are shipped picture perfect ,ready to thaw and enjoy anytime.

Join our private insider list to receive special offers, discounts and free giveaways only from Holey Donuts! Fill out the form below and click Ok and you are in!What people say about us…

“Thanks for your response. I’m already addicted to the donuts and I’ve only had 2! I’m trying to only have 1 a day but they are so delicious!! Thank you for making these delicious donuts!!”

Penny King

“I just had to compliment your co. on its wonderful customer service. Not only did you respond with a lovely answer you responded in an extremely timely manner. I also have to give Holey Donuts credit for helping with a very big issue I have battled for a long time. I hope you don’t take this as a “wow this women is wacked” but I am a normal 38 year old Nurse Practitioner from NY who has had a problem with body image that led to bulimia not to many years ago, my biggest issue was/is with sweets but after counseling I have recovered, why am I telling you this b/c I was able to recover with the help of Holy Donuts. They satisfy my sweet craving and have helped me to choose better options and “stay on the wagon” as they say. I would be glad to share my story with the co. if ever interested. Thanks again.”

Nicole Jackson

“I just received my order and I was impressed with the care taken to package it and ensure my donuts stayed fresh, with ice. When I finally thawed one out and bit into it, MY GOODNESS, I thought I died and went to heaven! The Cinnamon Strudel truly has a taste as if it had all the fatty ingredients, of course without them! I am raving to all my friends and my weight watcher buddies about a “MUST ORDER” and taste for themselves. I have labeled my boxes with DO NOT touch, ensuring my husband does not mistaken them for “REGULAR” donuts. Thank you for all the hard work and a product that speaks volumes, once tasted. A holey Donut Cheerleader.”

Elizabeth S

“I got my first order of Holey Donuts yesterday and could hardly wait to dive into them. In fact I didn’t wait long at all. I find it hard to believe they are low fat because, honestly, they taste too good to be low fat! And your customer service is amazing. When I had questions about my order you were quick to respond and were more than accommodating for my requests. Thank you so much!”


“Your products are the BEST I have EVER tasted! Truly amazing!! There is NO way that anyone would know that they are low fat!! Good for you~ keep up the good work! I am a lifetime customer :)”


“OMG. I just heated up a donut hole to try and I’m in love. I can’t believe they’re so guilt-free. I can’t wait for my husband and son to try them. They LOVE donuts and I think they’ll be immediate fans. Thanks you again and have a wonderful weekend!””


“Have you tried www.holeydonuts.net? Low fat, low calories! Hmmmmm good”

Kathy Stepnitz

“I have just ordered four more boxes (this will be eight so far) or your wonderful holey donuts – we love them so much!! I don’t know if I can wait until they arrive. I should have placed the order while there were still some left. I have to share them with my husband, and he demands his half share. I am only allowed to eat one of each variety, if we get two of them. So, they’re all gone now. Thanks, Holey Donuts. You are truly the best.”

Beverly S

“Checkout holeydonuts.net. The offer a HUGE variety of absolutely delicious low fat donuts. I know I was skeptical when I first ordered but they are absolutely divine! I could eat 3 of theirs to get the fat and calories in 1 regular donut (not that I would…well maybe :p) It a great guilty pleasure without the guilt. We all deserve a treat check them out!!!”

Ginger Pearl

“Being able to indulge your guilty pleasure … recapture that feeling of childhood … and that OHHHHH YESSSSS feeling of being lost in deliciousness. HOW you ask? Let me tell you, HOLEY DONUTS! Write about them … talk about them,. try them and exclaim about them!!”

Robin Roberts

“LOVE LOVE LOVE my holey donuts!! Check out their awesome delectableness.”

Laura Ali

“They make amazing low fat donuts that looks too good to eat!”

Sheryl Coward Wilson

“They make amazing low fat, guilt free donuts and they are having $1,000.00 giveaway! They are sweet, yummy, guilt free treats that everyone will love!”

Fogo Cigars

“Holey Donuts doesn’t use any artificial sweeteners and they still have a great taste without all of the calories.”

Having an wedding, party or other event, get your own custom donut bar stand made for less than $30.  It’s a great way to display your donuts and it will be the talk of your party.



New Car Buying Tips You May Not Know

Choosing a vehicle that is right for you is an important decision. The price of cars and trucks are at an all-time high and there are many things to take into consideration.

Below is just a quick overview of the different types of vehicles on the market today. Weigh the pros and cons. Think about what you like, what you dislike, how much you can spend, what your needs are, family, recreation, work etc. What is right for you?

Sport Utility Vehicles

suv-escapeThere have been many changes in the ever-growing SUV market. Most notable is that the once crude four-wheel -drive is now a better riding and more comfortable vehicle that seems to be leaving the once popular minivan in the dust.

Almost all compact SUVs are based on a car chassis which makes for a smoother and better ride. They are usually four or six-cylinder and front wheel or all-wheel-drive. Don’t expect to do much off-road driving. These vehicles are good in snow and loose surfaces such as dirt and gravel.

Midsize SUVs were originally almost always based on a ladder frame which made the ride very truck like, stiff and bouncy. They are typically six or eight cylinder, four-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive. Many are equipped with third row seating and generous cargo space. These are great family vehicles and an alternative to the minivan.

Large SUVs are based on full-size pickups and are extremely powerful. These SUVs are the choice for hauling cargo such as boats and trailers. They can also tackle almost any kind of off-road scenario with ease. They are manufactured in either four-wheel-drive or rear wheel drive and always with an automatic transmission. If you live in a climate where snow is a factor or you’ll be doing a lot of off-road driving than a four-wheel-drive may be the best choice. Remember due to the design you still will get a very stiff and bouncy ride.

Many SUVs can be very luxurious, even more so than some luxury sedans. Although beware because there is usually a hefty price tag. Also remember to take into consideration the price of fuel. It may be worth looking into the many hybrid choices that are available.



There are many different types vehicles on the market today. With soaring gas prices the car may be making a comeback. With so many choices including the fuel friendly subcompact, compact and hybrid the choices seem to be endless.

Subcompact cars are gaining much popularity these days due to their reasonable prices and most notably because of the high price of gasoline. These vehicles are great for the single person. Don’t expect much cargo space or very comfortable rear seating although on many models there is very generous front leg room. These vehicles are not very powerful and are not equipped with many options. They also can be very noisy especially during highway driving. Are they safe? By law they are all equipped with dual front air bags. Remember the problem being is that these cars are competing on roadways where there are many large cars, SUVs, pickup trucks and tractor-trailers. If you need to sell your used car, you can always do this via the dealership, private party or even a used car buying service like CarMax.com

Compact cars, with so many models to choose from, seem to be making a comeback. Most seat four comfortably and have large trunk space. Unlike years ago they can be very plush and come with many choices of options. Like the subcompact the compact is a good choice for the single person or even the small family. Since they are four-cylinder they still get better gas mileage than most vehicles.

The midsized car is the most popular in this category. Since they are great for families they give the SUV and minivan a run for their money. With a combination of cargo space, fuel economy, affordability and many vehicle choices the midsized car is worth a look. Most are manufactured with four-cylinder or six cylinder engines although there are some models with eight cylinder engines. Remember the old saying, “This is not your father’s Oldsmobile.” Many models offer cutting edge styling, high performance and luxury once only found in more expensive larger vehicles.

The typical large car is not what it used to be. These days they are only slightly larger than some midsized cars. With the popularity of sport utility vehicles interest in the large car has been greatly diminished. The large car now tends to be more of a sporty vehicle with many amenities and very luxurious. These cars are manufactured in usually six or eight cylinder.

The sports car may be one of the most diverse groups of all vehicles. They consist mainly of sporty hatchback’s, convertibles and muscle cars. They are fast, fun to drive and usually quite expensive. The front-wheel-drive hatchback is probably the least expensive of the bunch while the rear wheel drive muscle car is the most expensive. Who needs a vehicle like this? Nobody and everybody. These cars are manufactured for sheer enjoyment.

Pickup Trucks


Pickup trucks have gained much popularity over the years. They have gone from being simple workhorses to everyday comfortable transportation.

The compact pickup is truly not compact anymore. Every year the models seem to get larger and really cannot be classified as compact. The extended cab and the popularity of the crew cab have really helped the pickup truck to not be a one-man vehicle anymore. You may be able to fit five people in an extended cab and six in a crew cab. How comfortable? It all depends on the seating configuration of the particular model and of course the size of the passengers. Pickups are manufactured in rear wheel drive or four-wheel-drive. Rear wheel drive can be treacherous in rain or snow and four-wheel-drive can make the truck stiff and bouncy. Most bed sizes are standard 6 feet.

The large pickup truck like the compact pickup truck despite its size is very popular. As much as they are still considered powerful workhorses they can be very luxurious vehicles. They are manufactured in extended cab and crew cab versions and are either four-wheel-drive or rear wheel drive. Like the large SUV the current price of fuel is an issue to take into consideration.



The minivan has seen better days. Many automobile manufacturers are phasing out their models. Manufacturers such as Chrysler, Toyota and Honda are showing no end in sight. Minivan sales are definitely down due to the popularity of the sport-utility vehicle.

The minivan though does have much to offer. All minivans due to their size and weight have V-6 engines. One of the best things manufacturers did a few years ago was to put in that second rear door making loading and unloading packages and the kiddies easier. Most vans accommodate seven passengers and some accommodate eight. Folding down the rear seats is a plus when needing to transport large items. Some come standard with a DVD player and drop down LCD screen and audio and video jacks for video game systems. You can also get optional all-wheel-drive or traction control on some models.


The Truths & Misconceptions About Accutane

Understanding Acne аחԁ Accutane:

Acne іѕ a common disease found іח teenagers аחԁ саח continue tο bе a skin disease well іחtο adulthood fοr long periods.  It саח bе debilitating tο tһе individual bесаυѕе οf іtѕ presence οח tһе face fοr everyone tο see.  Acne affects 80-90% οf adolescents οf wһοm 15-30% need serious medical treatment.  Tһе medical community views acne аѕ a chronic disease (long lasting) аѕ opposed tο a self-limited problem οf teenagers, аחԁ treats іt accordingly.

Over tһе past 30 years οr ѕο medications used fοr acne therapy һаνе remained tһе same, mаkіחɡ υѕе οf topical аחԁ systemic аррrοасһеѕ tһаt include antibiotics аחԁ retinoids (isotretinoin, Accutane).  Accutane wаѕ tο bе used fοr tһе 15-30% οf acne cases tһаt demonstrated severe cystic acne tһаt іѕ physically аחԁ emotionally scaring.  Hοwеνеr, tһе government found tһаt 90% οf women аחԁ nearly half tһе teens using Accutane therapy һаԁ οחƖу mild cases οf acne.

Currently, tһеrе аrе חο cures fοr acne.  Acne therapies simply treat symptoms.   Generally, four factors contribute tο tһе presence οf Acne: oil producing glands іח tһе skin enlarge аחԁ produce tοο much oil (seborrhea), alterations іח growth аחԁ differentiation οf follicular keratinocytes (skin cells around hairs) occur, bacteria colonize hair follicles, аחԁ tһеח inflammation аחԁ immune reactions occur.  Acne therapies target tһеѕе four factors tο gain control.  Tһе first-line οf attack іѕ topical antibiotics аחԁ/οr topical retinoids.  Iח severe cases, systemic treatments include anti-androgens, oral contraceptives, οr oral isotretinoin (Accutane).  Isotretinoin іѕ tһе mοѕt potent inhibitor οf all four factors involved wіtһ acne.  Due tο Accutane side effects tһе drug іѕ now used аѕ a second-line οf defense іח treatment fοr severe cystic acne.

Related Article: Nufinity Anti Aging Skin Cream has amazing reviews

Accutane Safety Issues:

Documented Accutane side effects include depression, psychosis, suicide, hair loss (mау bе permanent), joint аחԁ muscle pain, osteoporosis, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, heart attack, stroke, seizures, аחԁ birth defects.  Accutane іѕ a potent teratogen (causing birth defects) аחԁ designated аѕ аח FDA pregnancy category X drug (X indicates severe birth defects).  Malformations οf tһе brain, face, аחԁ cardiovascular system һаνе bееח reported.  Tһіѕ drug needs tο bе used wіtһ caution іח females οf childbearing age.  In 2005, thе FDA required physicians, patients, pharmacies, аחԁ manufacturers tο comply wіtһ tһе iPLEDGE program, wһісһ requires registration οf all patients using Accutane.  Iח 2003, based οח information collected frοm many different countries, tһе European Agency fοr Evaluation οf Medicinal Products standardized tһе product summary.  According tο tһіѕ summary, Accutane іѕ tο bе used exclusively fοr severe cystic acne аחԁ οחƖу аѕ a second line οf defense. Tһеrе аrе very specific dosage requirements аחԁ іt іѕ tο bе used аѕ a single treatment fοr 4-6 months.  A second course οf treatment mау bе administered under חесеѕѕаrу circumstances аѕ deemed bу tһе physician.

Nеw acne treatments аrе currently being tested tһаt include diet control, anti-inflammatory agents (leukotrienes), bacterial vaccines, аחԁ peptidase inhibitors.  Tһе peptidase inhibitors seem tο bе tһе mοѕt promising ѕο far.  Clinical trials аrе underway bυt tһеіr results mау bе 5-10 years down tһе road.

If уου һаνе experienced Inflammatory Bowel Disease, depression, suicidal tһουɡһtѕ, birth defects, οr аחу οtһеr Accutane side effects уου mау bе entitled tο financial compensation. Yου mау want tο contact аח Accutane Lawyer tο see іf уου qualify fοr legal аѕѕіѕtаחсе.  Accutane lawsuits аrе currently being filed around tһе country.


Simple Plumbing Fixes – Toilet Repair

Fixing a leaky or broken toilet is one of the easiest plumbing jobs you’re likely to encounter.  You can easily pay a plumbing service to come out and do the job for you, or you can man up and take care of it yourself.

If your toilet is leaking or is clogged, or you are experiencing any other problems just call our toll free number to get professional help. We can bring your toilet to perfect working order.

These tips can also help you save money on your utility bills and future toilet repairs. They also may help extend the ongoing efficiency of your toilet systems. Taking chances with your health and safety when there is an toilet problem is not worth it. We strongly suggest that you do not get involved with any toilet repairs without professional help. All toilet repairs require professional training, knowledge and experience.  Without this professional background, repairs can be very harmful.  Toilet technicians use tools that are specialized for water, electric and gas systems.

Adjusting or replacing a toilet flapper valve

Some toilets have a flapper valve instead of a tankball. The toilet flapper valve works the same as the tankball but it’s attached to the base of the overflow toilet tube. A hinge allows the toilet flapper to move up and down like a door. A chain is connected to the toilet flapper and leads up to the flush lever.Pushing the flush lever pulls on the toilet chain and raises the toilet flapper valve. This action allows the water to drain out. Like the toilet tankball, the flapper is hollow and full of air so it floats and stays in the raised, open position until the water level in the toilet tank falls.Here’s how to adjust or replace the toilet flapper valve:

1 Make sure that the chain that connects the toilet flush lever with the flapper has about 1/2 inch of slack in it. When you push the toilet lever, the flapper should raise high enough to stay open but the chain should not be too tight to prevent the toilet flapper from falling back in place.

2 Check that the toilet flapper moves freely up and down.

To test this, reach into the toilet tank and lift the flapper by the chain and let go. It should fall back into the toilet outlet pipe. To adjust, loosen the screw holding the bracket around the toilet overflow tube and move the flapper up or down, right or left as needed to establish good alignment with the outlet pipe.

3 Align the flapper with the outlet pipe. If the toilet flapper isn’t aligned with the outlet pipe, loosen the clamp that holds the flapper in place and realign it so it falls directly into the outlet pipe. Then retighten the clamp.

4 Replace the toilet flapper.

If the flapper falls into the outlet pipe but still doesn’t completely stop the water flow, replace it. Loosen the screw that holds the bracket on the overflow pipe and pull the toilet flapper assembly up and off the overflow pipe. Take it to your local home center and purchase a replacement. Reinstall the new flapper in the reverse order that you removed the old, following the installation instructions provided by the toilet manufacturer.A toilet ballcock that doesn’t completely close can be another cause of a leaking toilet. To determine if your problem is with the floatball or ballcock, just look into the tank and note if the float ball is actually floating. If the float ball is partially submerged, it should be replaced.

Learn more about plumbing & toilet repair here. 


Information to Avoid Becoming a Victim of Identity Theft

We’ve all heard plenty of stories about identity theft by now. We’ve all heard the accounts of experiences of unauthorized usage of their credit cards, bank accounts and other services which involve money. At least 5 out of 100 people have or will experience this kind of unwanted fraudulent activity.

Thieves will never be after your identity if they will not get any benefit from it. They need your name, birth date, address, etc., to get into your financial accounts. One must bear in mind that these personal identification facts are necessary to open a new account as well. But thieves will do whatever they can just to steal your identity and your money.

Your protection depends on you. With this kind of crime, no one can help you initially except yourself. The prevention and protection from identity thieves depends on how wise you are in handling all important information about yourself.

Here are some things one must take into consideration in order to protect oneself from identity theft:

1)  One must keep a photocopy of all credit cards, bank account numbers and other important information in a safe place. In short, one must make a back-up record of all his  or her personal information and personal numbers. Making back-up copies will help you trace and cancel your stolen or lost cards quickly. One must also not forget that even a simple identification card or a driver’s license is very important and can also be a source of information that can be stolen.

2)  Dispose of your credit card receipts properly. Do not throw your receipts anywhere or it could be taken by thieves. Receipts contain information about yourself and your account, although nowadays only the last four numbers should print. This information may help thieves to steal your identity. Shredding your bills and receipts may not be practical at all. When a bill is shredded in strips, sometimes those strips can be retrieved and pasted back together. The best way to totally destroy your bills is by burning them. There is no way one can retrieve information from ashes. It must be said though that sometimes burning your papers is not doable. If you use a shredder, use a cross-cut shredder. There’ll be no putting that back together.

3)  Keep in touch with your credit institution. If you apply for a credit card and it does not arrive immediately, contact your credit institution and relay the problem. By doing so, you can prevent any fraudulent activity that may happen as a result.

4)  Create a good combination of numbers for your PIN or passwords. Make sure that you choose a difficult-to-guess PIN. Birth dates, mother’s maiden name, pet’s name, usual or famous number combinations, etc., should not be used for your PIN or passwords.

5)  Regard all information as personal. Do not give your personal information to anyone who sends you an email or a snail mail. Never give personal information over the phone.

6)  Observe the area surrounding the ATM before using it. Make sure that no one is around watching you while you make your transaction with the ATM. Make sure that there is no unusual equipment illegally attached to the ATM. There had been reports about electronic devices illegally attached to the card slot in the ATM. It has cameras on it which can record your PIN as you type it in. Another trick is a simple piece of paper. Make sure there is no paper sticking out of the slot and look inside for any as well. What happens is that you can put your card in and not get it back out. Then the thief comes back, tweezers the paper out, along with YOUR CARD! This is also a good reason to come up with a difficult PIN. Once a thief gets your name, they can look up your address, birthday, Facebook page (do you have pictures of your pet posted?), etc., to guess your PIN.

7)  Bills must be checked every month. All entries on the bill must be yours. If there are charges included in the bill which do not look familiar, immediately report it to your credit institution and ask for an investigation. If you’re sure, demand it be removed. Monitor your credit & bills with a keen eye to spot any anomalies.

8)  Active and cancelled checks must be stored properly. There are banks that offer service like this.

9)  Keep all important documents in your car properly. Do not put any thing which may contain information about you in sight inside your car. You may use the glove box as safety keep for your important things. Never leave it unlocked (the glove compartment or the car).

10)  Secure all your personal information in your mobile phone and laptop with a password. Remember that laptops and mobile phones are personal gadgets that are to be used solely by you. So keep it personal. And make it hard to retrieve if the device is stolen. Remember, devise a smart password!

11.  Freeze your credit with the major credit bureaus and nobody can run your credit without you first unlocking it and giving them permission.  This will prevent unauthorized people from looking at your credit reports and possibly opening lines of credit without authorization.

One must take responsibility for his belongings, personal properties and identity to totally prevent these illegal activities. The value of your identity is equivalent to the value of your life.

Learn more about protecting your identity at https://www.valtho.org/credit-monitoring-services-reviewed


Choosing The Best Home Theater System For Your Man Cave

If you’ve been kicking around the idea of adding a premium home theater system to your man cave or media room, you’re in for a fun, and possibly frustrating experience. There are many components that need to be considered in order to provide a state of the art experience. Among the most important components in a home user system is the use of a television or the viewing screen.  As with anything, there are many choices that can be considered and will satisfy the viewer and their friends.

For example, an individual may choose to go with a large plasma screen TV or may want to use LCD technology that brings about high definition capability.  In addition, the individual may choose to just simply install a large viewing screen and the images can be projected onto the screen using other audiovisual equipment.  Also, when it comes to selecting these types of viewing components, it is important to do one’s homework as well as purchase the right size of viewing screen.   A right sized viewing screen should be in proportion to the room that is being considered for the home theater system.

The purchase and installation of home computer speakers is the another major component for experiencing an optimal home theater.  Therefore, it is important to understand what type of home theater speakers are available and how to go about getting the best speakers that match the intent of the home theater.

Types of Home Theater Speakers

There are many type of home theater speakers available to the individual who is wishing to add or upgrade to their speaker system.  Therefore, it is important to do one’s homework and research prior to the purchase of any home theater speaker system.

Specifically, it would be important to search the Internet and to find out what sort of speaker systems are available and what the speaker systems entail.  For example, there are front speakers, a center channel speaker and speakers that can be placed in various parts of the room.  Some of these speaker systems contain all of these components or sometimes the individual needs to add on speakers to their home entertainment system.  Additionally, some of these speakers can be large in appearance and freestanding or some of the speakers can be small, but powerful, and put on shelves.

In addition, it is important to determine what the wattage is that the individual is looking for.  Specifically, the wattage output of the speakers

How to Shop for the Best Home Theater Speakers

The best way to shop for home theater speakers is to actually go to an electronic store or to a friend’s or relative’s home that has a home theater speaker system.  The advantage of actually listening to a quality speaker system is that the individual can get a sense of what the capacity of a speaker system can do and decide for themselves what they want based on this first-hand audio entertainment experience.

Once this has been established the individual knows what they are looking for and then can shop in a more experienced fashion.  Specifically they may want to have a certain amount of power to attain the level of sound that they are wanting, determine whether they want to utilize wireless speakers, etc.

In addition, it is important to read customer reviews of certain home theater speaker systems that the consumer is focusing in on.  Also, once a wireless outdoor speaker system has been decided upon then it is important to get the best financial deal on the purchase of this set of home theater speakers.  Therefore, the individual can conduct comparison-shopping.

Be sure to read my next installment of the home theater design where I give television & screen recommendations.



Investment Diversification Is A Must

source: stocksituations.com

You hear that diversification is key to investing.  Investment advisors want you to avoid individual stocks because picking them is too hard, so they will recommend a group of mutual funds for you to invest.

The problem I have with this is during a down market like we are seeing in 2008 and 2009, is that virtually every stock has plummeted.  It did not matter if you were invested in small-cap stocks, large-cap stocks, international stocks, or a sector like energy stocks – everything has fallen.

If the recent bear market has taught us anything, it is certainly that diversification is very important.  Many people, including older investors, were in the stock market way too heavily and are now experiencing deep loses in their portfolio.

It does not have to be that way.  There are many alternative ways to make your money work for you in an economy such as this.

One option is something called private REITs.  A REIT stands for Real Estate Investment Trust.  A REIT can be publicly traded or private.  A public REIT could experience much of the same affects of the stock market.  However, a private REIT usually guarantees a certain rate of return over a period of time.  The downside is that your money is tied up in the REIT and there is usually a penalty for early withdrawal.  At some point the private REIT sells its share publicly (usually when market conditions are favorable) and it is concluded at that point.

You hear a lot of commercials about gold, and right now, they are accurate.  Gold tends to be a safe haven for money when stocks or bonds get volatile.  Many people think they have to go to the local coin shop down the street and buy gold coins or gold bullion to participate, however that is not the case.  Investors could invest in gold through an exchange traded fund (ETF).  An exchange-traded fund (or ETF) is an investment vehicle traded on stock exchanges, much like stocks. An ETF holds assets such as gold and trades at approximately the same price as the net asset value of its underlying assets over the course of the trading day.  One common one is called GLD.

Also, land or houses can be a good way to diversify.  This is definitely not for everyone, but sometimes rental income is a good diversification tool.  However, it also poses risks, because you could have bad tenants and of course you may have cases where your property goes un-rented for an undermined period of time.  But again, the key to your strategy should be diversification, so this would only be part of your portfolio.  I have a personal example to share here.  I recently took advantage of the mortgage rate drops, and I refinanced my current home at 4.5%.  After seeing my other investments take such a hit this year, I have decided to focus on paying off my house in 15 years.  If I move, I plan to rent the house and continue with my plan to pay it off.  In the end, I hope to have an asset with value and also a vehicle for returning monthly cash flow in the form of rent.

In conclusion, I want to encourage people to think creatively and learn to really diversify their investment portfolio.  If you need help, seek the help of investment advisor or money manager.  However, be cautious if he or she wants to only sell you a family of mutual funds.  Ask questions about other opportunities they have as well, such as private REITs, annuities, etc.  It is okay to invest in mutual funds, I own several myself, but in a market like we have now, it is easy to see now important non-stock diversification really is.


Basic Tax Saving Tips for Americans

Record number of Americans dump U.S. passports

Tax Saving Tips in America. Taxation are monetary charges levied with an organization to support debt and carry out its programs and objectives. U.S. residents are subject to a taxation such as those on goods and services, real estate, and income. Income earners are required to file results to document taxes paid, pay taxes owed and obtain tax concessions.

A tax deduction is an expense you incurred that the government permits you to subtract from your earnings that is taxable. The interest you’ve got paid throughout the entire year on a home mortgage or another mortgage may be tax-deductible. Since home loan repayments are frequently a big cost, this deduction may total hundreds or tens of thousands of dollars in savings. Holiday home or only one second residence can qualify to get a mortgage interest deduction. Real-estate fees and express house are also deductible from your federal tax.

Charitable Giving
Contributions made to qualifying charities such as spiritual institutions and the Red Cross are tax-deductible. Non-cash donations can also be tax-deductible to the worthiness of the items given. As an example, if you contribute #039 several hundred dollars&; worth of garments to a charity that offers it to the destitute, you’re able to deduct the value of the garments out of your taxes. Charitable giving should be recorded.

Tax-Advantaged Pension Accounts
Another method to avoid paying taxes is always to save using tax-advantaged retirement accounts, like 401(k) plans and personal retirement accounts (IRAs). With 401(k) plans, money can be put before spending taxes. Likewise, contributions made to traditional IRAs in many cases are tax-deductible. A Roth IRA is a particular form of IRA which allows after tax earnings to be contributed and then grow tax-free. Providing funds to these forms of accounts enables workers save more for retirement and in order to avoid taxes.

Worker Expenses
In case your occupation that needs you to spend cash that’s not repaid by your employer, a few of your expenses might be tax-deductible. The IRS lists passport for a business trip, the following as potential tax deductions for workers: dues to professional organizations, supplies and resources used in job search expenses, union fees, your work and work -related instruction.

Sources: Tax Preparation & Filing 

Tax Services Los Angeles

CNN Money Tax Tips


How To Recover From Identity Theft

identity theftHaving your identity stolen can make you feel mad and violated. If you have excellent credit on top of that then you probably feel scared. There are certain things you must do as soon as you realize what happened. So, if you’ve experienced this crime you’ll need to know how to recover from identity theft.

The Federal Trade Commission (Consumer Protection Division) is the agency that keeps track of identity theft and its victims. Identity theft is a big business and with our economy in shambles, it’s only going to get bigger. There are many people right now who do not know that their identity has been stolen. So, here are some tips on how to recover from identity theft.

First you must contact the police. You’ll need that police report down the line. In fact, keep it forever. Next, request an extended alert on your credit report from all 3 credit reporting agencies. An extended alert will remain on your report for 7 years compared to an initial alert which lasts 90 days.

It’s been advised to cancel all credit cards that you don’t need. Call each company and request closure of your account. Make sure they document the conversation by sending you a letter stating “account closed by consumer”. Keeping extra credit cards just increases your risk of being a victim.

Also, contact your bank to flag your account. Choose an amount and tell the bank to contact you when an amount higher than that has been withdrawn. If you have access to your account online, check your balance daily. Many people have discovered a discrepancy early which helps the bank to recover the money. Not to worry, you will be reimbursed within 24 hours.

Sign up for a credit monitoring service, so you can keep track of any new accounts that are opened or attempted to be opened by the criminals.  Credit monitoring will also allow you to get regular credit reports so you can see any inquiries that need to be removed or other problems that could end up effecting your credit score.  You can find out which credit monitoring plan is right for you at http://www.stopidentityfraud.org/credit-monitoring-services.  It’s a free resource for consumers who want to better protect themselves from identity theft or victims who need assistance.

Start being more vigilant of your surroundings. Make sure no one can tamper with your mail. Get off of mailing lists with credit card companies. Many people have had their identity stolen by someone talking on a cell phone which also doubles as a camera. It’s a given that most identity theft victims never know how or when they’ve been victimized.

If you have a good or excellent credit score you have more to lose than the average person. Credit will be extended more readily to someone with a great credit history. So that makes you the type of person identity thieves consider a goldmine. So the time to take action is now. Don’t become oblivious to what the world is telling you. Protect your name and your rights.

It’s sad to say, but it is what it is. The latest statistics say that every 2 seconds someone becomes a new victim of identity theft. So whether you’ve been a victim or not, protect yourself before it happens. Learn how to recover after identity theft and put these people out of business.

Well over 200 million personal data records were lost or exposed in the United States in the last two years. Chances are your identity is already compromised.

Quick Facts

  • Identity theft hits 1 in 4 US households
  • Over 79 million identities were lost in the past 12 months
  • Over 3 million social security numbers are illegally traded online
  • Identity theft costs people an estimated $6.4 billion/year