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There are many perks to being a business owner, like being you own boss, making your own schedule, putting a higher dollar value on your time, and pride of ownership. Another great reason, you want to own a business because you can qualify for higher credit card limits and these credit cards do not affect your personal credit once you’re approved and if you’re set up as a C-corporation.

However, one the biggest most benefits are the business tax write-offs.  Business ownership does have a price, especially when you’re using the banks money to help fund the business.  The good news is that business bank fees can be tax deductible and we give you a few examples here:

Annual Fees

Annual fees on a business card are tax deductible. This may be a great way to justify getting that card with the steep annual fee that also has amazing rewards. Yes, you can write it off, but keep in mind that the primary use of the card needs to be for business purposes and not for personal use.

Late Fees

Hopefully you’re not incurring late fees on your credit cards, but mistakes happen and you sometimes forget to make a payment. Those fees can be written off for your business taxes. Of course, it’s always best to call the company and explain you simply forgot and ask if they can waive the fee this time; saving $35 is almost always going to be better than claiming a $35 tax deduction.

Interest Charges

Again, in an ideal world you won’t be paying interest on any of your purchases. But there are times when you need equipment, and there just isn’t enough cash in the bank to pay for it right away. Those interest charges are all tax deductible.

Swipe Fees (point of sales fees)

As a business owner, you pay the credit card company every time someone uses their card to pay you. These are always business-related expenses and fully tax deductible.

Miscellaneous Fees

There are sometimes other fees associated with using a credit card. For instance, your cash advance fees are deductible.  

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Top 4 Businesses to Start in 2013

2013 is just around the corner. And as we approach this time to declare a “New Year, New You”, this is a great time to do something new, do something different, and actually take the steps to start a business. Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to have specific education or thousands of dollars to invest in a business that will thrive and last beyond the dreaded 3 year failure mark. The following 4 business types are all businesses that have been deemed the “top” businesses to start in 2013 as their industries are growing.

1. Organic Food- Perhaps with help from the FLOTUS Michelle Obama with her “Let’s Move” Campaign, organic food sales are rising. People are starting to care more about the quality of food they consume and prepare for their family. The organic food industry is a growing industry that will continue growing into 2013. If you are someone who loves organic food, good with creating recipes or interested in growing it, this would be a great industry in which to start a business. Get more information here about the certifications and accreditations needed to get started. ORGANIC FOOD CERTIFICATION

Average Start-Up Costs: $500-$1000

2. Cosmetics- Always a popular product, natural cosmetics are going to be big in 2013. Women... well, people are going away with Botox and chemical peels, etc. They are looking for more natural ways to maintain a youthful appearance. There are several ways you can start a cosmetics company:

A.You can join a company already established and be their walking advertisement by wearing and sharing their products. Companies like Mary Kay, Seacret, Xango and Rodan+Fields are reputable companies with proven natural products.

Average Start-Up Costs: $100 - $1000

B. You can create your own cosmetic products. Of course your investment will be much more, but at the end, the product will be your own brand. To start a cosmetic line of quality may average you $40,000 and more. Don’t get me wrong, there are places where you can start your own for much less but if you want to stay in business, the money is worth it or go with option number A. Start Your Own Cosmetic Line Option

Average Start-Up Costs: $40,000+

3. Ecommerce –,,, and are just a few great resources for selling products like clothing, jewelry, electronics, books, music, vintage stuff, etc. People sell all kinds of things through these resources. All you need is a camera, even cell phone, to take pictures of stuff you are selling and set it up.

Average Start-Up Costs: $0 - $100

4. Affiliate Marketing- According to CNBC is the “best online small business idea of 2013”. The affiliate, internet, network marketing business model will see an increase of business owners. Several reasons for this is because training is free and unlimited and there is a great potential to generate a substantial income with residual options (money that continues to generate even if you do not work that month). Best companies to start are companies just starting, that do not have a saturated field of marketers. You just need a computer and an out of the box product. New Millenium Business

Average Start-Up Costs: $25 - $200

Of course these are only a few options for businesses to start. There are plenty other and if you put forth hard work in anything it is bound to succeed. For help on deciding what type of business to start, more specific information about the industries above, or how to expand your current business, Sign Here to receive a free consultation. Trying something new can be scary but when you have a Success Teacher by your side, that makes it so much easier. Happy New Year and make 2013 a "Go Get It" year!

Tamara Garrison-Thomas

Garrison Prosperity Solutions

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Getting on a List Generates Publicity

Are you aware that countless opportunities to send out press releases and receive valuable, free publicity get missed everyday?  There are literally dozens of newsworthy opportunities for getting positive media exposure.  Being recognized on a List of some kind or receiving an award is a great way to generate publicity for yourself.

It also becomes a win-win situation for you and the person (or business) honoring you because they get publicity too!


Here's the one I created after being named one of the Top 50 Fabulous Women Entrepreneurs:


(Durham, NC-July 22, 2011) Beverly Mahone of Durham has been named one of the top Fabulous Women Entrepreneurs by SistaSense Magazine and Black Business Women Online.  Mahone is one of 10 women selected in the category of print and digital media.  After leaving the television news business in 2006, Mahone created BAMedia which caters to fellow baby boomers who want to learn how to self-promote themselves and their businesses. 

In making the recent announcement, SistaSense Editor-in-Chief LaShandra Henry says “I see thousands of black women whose deeds go unnoticed. I wanted to recognize the BBWO50 for their hard work and diligence and show Sistasense readers these are our women to support, promote, and aspire to be like.  Henry says she chose women who have built established businesses with visible growth over time both online and offline. She also focused on up and coming women entrepreneurs whose innovative online business ventures are publicly recognized. “In short, these women are widely respected for the businesses they have established and their social influence both online and offline is undeniable,” she added.

Mahone says, “I am honored to have been included on this list.  LaShandra Henry is right.  Many times Black Female Entrepreneurs are overlooked in spite of how hard they work and the expertise they bring to the table--especially those of us who are baby boomers.” 

You can find complete list here:


**If you want to learn more about how to self-promote, contact me**

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images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ9HaKHhLxMbxv5dn2zHN_I4BSj9NR6w8Sdz1zYL-ErgiKexmGPAA&__SQUARESPACE_CACHEVERSION=1312150873637Sure many successful entrepreneurs (myself included) will tell you how they've either maxed credit cards, over extended themselves, moved in with parents, sold cars, lived IN their cars, spent their entire life savings or 401k on their dream all in pursuit of their dream and destiny. Many of them took a gamble and won having built lasting profitable businesses and wealth. One of my clients successful built her company to 7 figures after being at the brink of bankruptcy, repossession, and financial ruin. list it's 25 Common Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs and these are all dead on many of them echo the traits needed such as "creating  plan" to learning to work with integrity and so one, however there is one that is missing...

I'm adding #26 and making it #1, you MUST have a plan for how you will get your Personal Affairs in order. This means from your  personal finances to improving your credit if it's challenged, to your relationships. It's no secret to successful entrepreneurs that your personal life (particularly for women) has a direct effect on your business. Taking risk in your business is a given and while I'm neither for or against risking it all (I'm more so on the "for" side) Ignoring your personal affairs can certainly lead to undue stress.

#1 Get Your Personal Affiars in order

From your relationships, drama, and finances. If you are Planning to risk it all you NEED to have a strategy! Failing to plan how you are going to navigate and survive or deal with a mate that is unsupportive or how you plan to manage your health care can mean the difference for some of success and failure.

While it is important to have a plan BEFORE you start your business. The reality is MOST of us won't, we'll fly out into entrepreneur land blind. Hey I'm not mad at you, I get it I'm with you 100% but at some point you must get some order to your personal life in order to reach the optimal success you want to achieve in your business life. I'll share more about my own personal story tomorrow, but for now here are some steps you must take now.

1. Pull your personal credit report and get an understanding of where you credit stands. If you have challenges you may not be able to fix them overnight, but get clear on where you are so you can make a plan.

2. Make sure your tax returns are filed or at least you have a strategy and plan in place and know where you stand with the IRS. The worse feeling is being on top of the world in your business and then BAM! You are hit with an audit on the personal side. See it with don't want this.

3. Get an Life Insurance policy for yourself and your family. Leaving a comfortable 9 to 5 where they (should) provide life insurance for you, many entrepreneurs simply don't think about this when whey start out on their own. Sure you want your business to be your insurance policy but be realistic. If you are a young person be sure to have a plan of how your family will survive if you become disabled.

4. Create a Will. I hope you didn't create your business but have no plan of how it will pass on after you? Create a will for how you plan to leave your business, or other assets. A living will may be good as well to cover how things should be governed should you become disabled and unable to care for your family or your business.

5. Create a salary for yourself in your pricing. If your fee for coaching is $100 an hour, make sure you know that about $75 is going to go just to cover expenses, pay insurance, travel etc. That leaves you with $25 an hour to live off. If this isn't going to be good for you, then maybe you need to increase your hourly rate to $150 or $200 an hour. 


Check here for the rest! 


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Katrina M. Harrell is author of "Embrace.Your.Journey.: 180 Day Journey to Unlocking Your Wisdom, Redefining Your Success and Discovering Your Abundant Wealth" (The Sum of Her Publishing, 2011). President of the KM Harrell Group, LLC a Strategic Business Development & Management firm supporting minority and women-owned businesses. Her firm’s consulting services have helped many minority and women owned businesses establish foundational structures and exit strategies within their businesses that have aided them in selling for profit or obtaining investor funding. Passionate about entrepreneurship education, Katrina’s insight and expertise is highly sought after both online and off. She is also founding CEO for Your Simple Bookkeeper, outsourced national bookkeeping company for micro and small business. 

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YES, Darla's Closet Boutique and her Simply Smashing Spring Fashion Show was the first to showcase/feature my NEW Spring/Collection of Bikinis! The "Gia" Bikinis are sold as a set OR separates; and top size ranges are: 32-34; 34-36; 36-38; bottom sizes ranges are: S/M/L. Most popular sales are the tops!Delivery time for these beauties are 10-14 business days (not including holidays). Exclusively sold at Darla's Closet Boutique or (661.949.1049) at an "exclusive" price too! But please feel free to log onto my website:; phone: 800.731.3105; or email: if you have questions, would like to sell any of our items, or would like to order an item not shown on the slide below/or the website!Check out the slide show below of the runway presentation of the NEW "Gia" Bikinis and a few other popular items by Tracey Ambrose W.R.A.P.
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Lace Wig and Hairlines

For most women who order stock wigs, they usually don't have a problem with fitting them. There are, however, women who are not able to buy ready made lace wigs. Why? Hairlines. Everyone's hairline is different. With different hairlines, most stock wigs will not fit women with varying hairlines such as a low hairline, hair growing down to the temple area, or hair growing on the sides as side burns. This is mainly where women got the idea of shaving the hairline back so that they are able to wear one.The perfect example is the beautiful Mo'nique. Enclosed are some pictures of her hairline and how could see how it would be a challenge to adjust a stock lace wig for individiuals with hairlines such as hers.So for ladies who are not able to buy stock wigs, do not despair, custom is worth the wait!

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