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How to Know if Your Side Hustle is About to Take Off

So, you decided to start a small business during quarantine… You know, to fill up all your spare time among family walks and baking bread! Or, maybe you’re considering starting a business? Either way, there are many tell-tale signs to see if your side hustle is about to take off! Take our latest quiz to see where you stand!

Part of ‘adulting’ means keeping track of your important life documents and items. Download LifeHound—an easy-to-use platform created to ensure your important documents remain organized and secure. Ready to get started? Sign up for your free trial today! Download on the app store today.

Is Your Business Really a Small Business?

Did you know that in the United States alone, there are over 30.2 million small businesses that have been established? Take our most recent quiz to find out more about the small business sector and to get technical about what actually qualifies as a small business (WARNING: You might be surprised!)

Part of ‘adulting’ means keeping track of your important life documents and items. Download LifeHound—an easy-to-use platform that was created to ensure your important documents remain organized and secure. Ready to get started? Sign up for your free trial today! Download on the app store today.

Behind the Scenes of Running a Business: Do You Have What It Takes?

So, you want to run a business? Or perhaps you already are! That’s amazing—but first, let LifeHound test your knowledge to evaluate how much you know about what being a business owner takes and looks like. Take our latest quiz now to see where you stand, and where you can improve!

Part of ‘adulting’ means keeping track of your important life documents and items. Take our quiz to see if you have what it takes to run a small business! Then, sign up for your free trial today! Download on the app store today.

Just Starting Your Business? Here’s a Checklist of What You Need to Know

2020 was the year of business launches! In fact, 4.4 million new companies started worldwide in 2020. Did you start a small business, or did the idea cross your mind? Take our most recent quiz to test your preparedness and for a rundown on all of your “need-to-knows!” as a small business owner.

Part of ‘adulting’ means keeping track of your important life documents and items. Take our quiz for a checklist of what you need to prepare when launching a business, then download LifeHound—an easy-to-use app that was created to ensure your important documents remain organized and secure. Ready to get started? Sign up for your free trial today! Download on the app store today.

Small Business Owners: How LifeHound Can Save You Money

As a business owner, you have a lot of moving pieces to keep track of. Hence, organization is key. In fact, business owners, are acutely aware of the essence of time and organization (perhaps more than anyone!)

“For every minute spent organizing, an hour is earned.” – Anonymous

LifeHound for Your Small Business

Anything that can help streamline your processes is always top of mind and ready for consideration. Luckily, today, a myriad of apps have been created to help small businesses do just this. LifeHound is one of them. Apps like LifeHound allow business owners to manage their endeavors on the go.

Whether you’re an up-and-coming business owner or your business has been around for generations… there is always something to improve upon. From document storage to reminders, LifeHound was created to keep individuals organized. And who wouldn’t want to save time and money by implementing such an organizational tool? Here, we’ve compiled a list of what LifeHound can help you achieve as a millennial business owner.

LifeHound save your small business money

Here are some examples of document storage and reminders that LifeHound offers for business owners day to day:

  • Business License (with renewal reminders!)
  • Statement of Information (Filings required annually)
  • Taxes Filed
  • Estimated Tax Payment Reminders
  • Corporate Tax Filing Reminders
  • Federal Employer Identification Numbers and State Corporation Numbers
  • W-9 for the Company
  • Website SSL Certificates
  • DUNS Number (The Data Universal Numbering System managed by Dun & Bradstreet)
  • Bank Accounts and associated information
  • Store Statements
  • Paperwork Filed for Legal Entity Creation
  • Corporate Bylaws
  • Articles of Incorporation
  • Annual Meeting Minutes (Required to be stored and reminder to hold year)
  • Company Logos or Digital Assets
business owner LifeHound account

An example of what your LifeHound account looks like as a business owner. Are you looking to start a business or have you already? To improve efficiency and reduce expenses as a business owner, connect with us today to learn more about what our LifeHound tools can offer your business!

What You Need to Know About Getting Your REAL ID

Hmm, a REAL ID? You might be thinking, “I already have a real ID!” And that may be true, kind of… While you might have an authentic form of identification, a REAL ID is different—and new for many! 

Hold on, we promise it’s not as confusing as it sounds! Let us explain. Here’s what you need to know about getting your REAL ID: the when, why, and how, made simple.

When You Need It

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the REAL ID enforcement deadline has been pushed back, once again. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has now extended the date to May 3, 2023

Although this seemingly gives people “plenty of time” to get their ducks in a line, dates like this always sneak up on people, and it’s better to be prepared than to be scrambling at the last minute. 

LifeHound is here to help!

Why You Need It

In simple terms, for your safety! And for the safety of the United States people. 

Although the U.S. government had a variety of security measures in place prior to the September 11th terrorist attack on the World Trade Center, this event scaled their security efforts tenfold.

In 2005, Congress passed the Real ID Act. This act places stricter rules and restrictions on the type of identification people can use, as to prevent the use of counterfeit driver’s licenses and IDs. The REAL ID that will be mandated in 2023, will be necessary to board United States flights and to enter federal facilities, including federal courthouses, nuclear plants, military bases, and additional federal facilities.

Identification cards that are REAL ID-compliant are marked with a gold star near the top of the ID card. REAL IDs that are administered in California are additionally marked with a gold bear. For state-specific information on how to obtain your REAL ID, visit the DHS’s REAL ID website.

Your REAL ID Checklist

In order to apply for and receive your REAL ID, there is preparation to be done. If you’re using LifeHound, however, the process will be a breeze as all of your important life documents are already organized!

Before you get your REAL ID, know that you should anticipate a trip to the Department of Motor Vehicles.

What You Need to Know About Getting Your REAL ID

But don’t worry! It’ll be quick and easy if you have your documents ready. Below is a list of what you’ll need.

Proof of Identity

Of course, to get your REAL ID, you need to prove your identity! Here are some examples below, according to the California DMV, of what this might look like

  • Valid, unexpired U.S. passport or passport card
  • Original or Certified copy of U.S birth certificate
  • U.S. Certificate of Birth Abroad or Consular Report of Birth Abroad of U.S. Citizen
  • Unexpired foreign passport with valid U.S. Visa and approved I-94 form
  • Certificate of Naturalization or Certificate of U.S. Citizenship
  • Valid, unexpired Permanent Resident Card”

Note: This is not a comprehensive list. Please visit your state’s DMV site for a complete list of approved proof of identity documents.

Proof of Social Security Number

If eligible, you must present one original document displaying your name and entire social security number. If you are not eligible for a social security number, not to worry! You can still apply for a REAL ID. Visit your state’s DMV site for more comprehensive information. According to the California DMV, however, here are some documents that will pass as proof of your SSN:

  • Social security card
  • W-2 form
  • Social Security Administration (SSA) 1099 form
  • Non-SSA-1099 form
  • Paystub with full SSN

Proof of Residency

In California specifically, you must present two printed documents that prove your state residency. These documents must include your first and last name and the mailing address must match that on your driver’s license or ID application. Some examples that might prove residency include:

  • A rental or lease agreement
  • Deed or title to residential real property
  • Mortgage bill
  • Home utility bill
  • Medical documents
  • Faith-based document

Visit your state’s DMV site for a complete list of necessary documents. 

For those who do not have proof of residency, please visit your state’s DMV for more information.

Not to Worry!

To many, sifting through their life’s important documents to apply for a REAL ID sounds like a nightmare. But it doesn’t have to be! At LifeHound, we recommend you take advantage of the REAL ID deadline extension. 

If you begin your free trial of LifeHound today, you truly will have plenty of time to get your application and important documents sorted. LifeHound makes it easy. 

What are you waiting for? Download the app and sign up today!

How to Start Your Digital Organization Process

So your cereal boxes are color-coded… but what about your important documents?

I think by now we’ve all watched the Home Edit, or at least heard of it. And I think we can all collectively say “WOW, I never thought organized cereal boxes would bring me such joy.” I mean c’mon, rainbow sorted cereal boxes have never looked so satisfying! Imagine how organizing your important documents would make you feel if cereal boxes and clothes could make you feel this much happiness!

Never again would you have to search through a file cabinet full of papers to find that one specific document from 10+ years ago! I think most people fall into the hoarder category when it comes to important, and even not-so-important paperwork. Something about throwing these documents away seems so difficult. 

That’s exactly why we created LifeHound. LifeHound provides a one-stop-shop for the organization and management of all of your important documents. Not to mention, you receive notifications when stored items are about to expire! All you have to do is input the information. Not only will you know when your Driver’s License or insurance is about to expire, but you can also input that warranty you’ve been meaning to take advantage of or that free trial that charges you after 30 days. 

I mean… what could be better than that?! Knowing where your documents are AND getting reminded to update them when you need to. Count me in. 

From our experience, an area of challenge for our customers is actually inputting the information. We get it … we really do. Procrastination is a thing. This is why we’re outlining a few ways to input your information into your LifeHound account. 

Get it all done in one

So your cereal boxes are color-coded... but what about your important documents?

An overhaul of your document organization may be necessary to get you started on this somewhat daunting process. When taking this route, you’ll need to gather all your important documents. This includes your Driver’s License, passport, insurance cards, car registration… all of it! Get it all together in one place, and then start inputting the details into LifeHound. 

Once you’ve added all of your important documents, you’ll only need to add new information as you receive it. Talk about ripping off the band-aid! I mean you can even add your prescriptions. We’ll remind you to get it filled and pick it up. There’s nothing you can’t add and get reminded to renew or cancel. 

Take baby steps to reach the big goal

Another way to get the same result as mentioned above is to take baby steps towards uploading your information. We understand that inputting all of your information at once can be time-consuming, daunting, and let’s face it, not much fun. If one big inputting session is going to overwhelm you, start by inputting one document a day. You can continue to input others as often as you can fit it into your schedule. 

Security

It can be scary inputting your information into the dark abyss of the web, but we’ve thought of that too. Your important information is just as important to us as it is to you, and we want to ensure your documentation remains secure and safe from potential cyber threats. LifeHound guards your life and your important documents with bank-level security.

Let’s get started!

We believe in the power of our app, which is why it’s available to download for free. Sign up today, no credit card required! Start on the free plan, and begin adding your information however you choose. Create a record, upload photos of your documents, and see how easy it is to start getting organized with LifeHound. Sign up for your free trial here.

How to Get Organized for Tax Season

Taxes, Taxes, Taxes!

It’s tax season! *Cue dreaded sigh* Tax season typically means it’s time to go through that massive stack of papers and start preparing your return. Keeping track of your annual income and expenses can be a stressful burden. With all the craziness this past year has thrown our way, don’t let this tax season and the IRS throw you any curveballs. It’s time to get organized. Here are a few tips to help you get through this year’s tax season stress-free.

Start by getting organized. 

If you don’t already track your paperwork in LifeHound, get all your information in one place. Ensure all the forms you have filed are completed accurately, ensuring there aren’t any typos or mistakes. Ensure your EIN numbers, social security numbers, and all other identification forms are accurately stated. Be sure to store all forms, invoices, and receipts in the same place. 

Keep track of things all year long

Tax season typically sneaks up on people. As the year goes you should be keeping all tax-related items together in either a file folder or folder on your computer. And we know, that can be overwhelming to find if you haven’t been doing so the entire year. It’s important that you start now so you’re already ready for next year’s tax season. 

After this last year, the line between business and personal expenses is blurrier than ever. Be diligent about tracking your expenses when they happen and be prepared for the IRS to pay close attention to those write-offs!

Avoid too many deductions.

Vehicle expenses, adoption credits, and home office deductions are all important deductions to consider, especially after this past year. If you are claiming excessive/unrealistic deductions that are disproportionate to your income and expenses claimed by others, it may attract IRS attention. Ensure all your deductions have documentation to back them up, and that documentation is stored in an organized manner. 

If you are a business owner, prepare W-2s and 1099s

As a business owner, you pay and withhold taxes from your staff all year. If you haven’t already provided your employees with their tax forms, you need to do so as soon as possible. 

Keep track of large charitable donations

 Charitable donations are a great way to help your community and receive tax deductions! Be careful about the size of your charitable donations, as a donation that seems too large for your income bracket can attract IRS attention. Non-cash deductions over $500 require Form 8283, be sure you have all the forms required for your specific donation. 

Tax season can be a breeze when you take steps to remain organized and prepared. LifeHound offers a one-stop-shop for all your tax season needs. Store, track, and update your forms and important documentation, so if the IRS does come your way, you’re ready. Sign up for free! Start your organization journey, and give yourself more time to enjoy your life!

Are “Free Trials” really free?

 We’ve all been there- you sign up for a 30-day free trial and input your credit card to get billed on the 31st day and you forget to cancel your trial. Yikes, there goes $60! With so many free trials out there, it’s important to understand what you may be getting yourself into if something like this situation occurs. 

Let’s start with an example.

Apple offered their customers who purchased a new iPhone received a one-year subscription to Apple TV+. Similarly, Verizon users on unlimited plans also received a one-year subscription to Disney Plus. When these customers sign up, they must agree to start paying for the services after a year. Many who sign up for these promotions likely have no intention of actually paying after the year is up. However, most of these customers forget to cancel and end up paying for the next year anyway. 

What’s even worse is that these customers might not realize they are paying for these subscriptions for months. What was once free, is now months of costly charges. 

How can you ensure your free trials are actually free?

Let’s start with how a free trial offer works.

Most free trials work on the idea that when you sign up for the free trial you put in some sort of personal information. For example, you see an ad on Amazon, and you are redirected to a page that contains fields for you to fill in. Once you have filled these in, you submit your information to receive the product or service. 

What most people skip on these pages are the terms and conditions. The terms and conditions typically state that if you do not return the item after 30 days or ca

ncel the trial, you will be charged in full. Leaving you to continue paying for the service or receiving another month’s worth of product. 

After the trial period has finished, and you’ve started on your 30-day plan, it can be extremely challenging to cancel. The cancellation policies may change after the free trial is up. Until you can cancel, you will be charged monthly or annually. 

How can you avoid free trial mishaps?

You must start by reading the terms and conditions before you sign up! Most companies don’t have your best interest in mind, which is exactly why you need to get all the information. Before your click ‘I agree’ take these tips into consideration…

Are “Free Trials” really free?

  • Free doesn’t always mean free. Inputting your credit card information is a sign that you’re probably signing up for something that isn’t free. If you do still want to continue with the free trial, understand exactly what those charges will be when they occur. 
  • Don’t forget to set a reminder once you sign up. LifeHound is a service that provides reminders when all your important documents, trials, and other important dates are coming up. 
  • Once again, don’t forget to check the terms and conditions before your sign up.
  • Lastly, if it seems too good to be true… it probably is. The products being offered may not always be up to the standard the ads are presenting. Stay on top of the trial dates to ensure you won’t be charged for a subpar product.

At LifeHound, our free trial is REALLY free. No credit card information is required. It’s time to stop falling into the ‘free trial’ trap. Keep track of your important trial dates in LifeHound and receive helpful reminders when it’s time to cancel.