Work Update & computer question

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by klmno, Jan 27, 2010.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Well, the bad news is that I'm self-employed already- a little sooner than I wanted because I didn't want to have to pay self-employment tax and so forth out of this drastically reduced pay.

    The good news- I have a "client"! These people I met with want to hire me as a consultant and said they are sure they have at least 2 months of work but can't guarantee longer just yet. Another consultant they spoke with (who does a different type of work) gave them a good recommendation of me because they mentioned my name and as it turned out, that guy had worked with me many times over the apst ten years and told them I was fine to work with. I'm playing phone tag with the other man that called to see if I can also do some part time work from home for him- then I would have two clients!

    Now, I just need to figure out if I can keep the house being that I'm now working as a consultant and am not sure how to "prove" income this way.

    The computer question- OK, I installed the software and this seems to be working but I know I'm going to need more memory on my computer real soon. Is there a way to add memory without having to reinstall software or files- in a way where I don't lose any info currently on my hard drive? And I need to keep cost minimal.
     
  2. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    Adding memory shouldn't effect your files at all. You just pop it in and reboot.

    Check out: www.newegg.com
     
  3. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

  4. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    K...I would go out immediately and buy an external hard drive. Walmart has them pretty cheap. I just got a 250gig external hard drive for 50 bucks. I think a 500 gig was not a whole lot more but I didnt see that I would need more but you may want to invest in 500 or 1 terabyte. And dont ask me what a terabyte is...lol. I have no idea where these terms come from.

    Im pretty sure if you install the external hard drive and back up the files to that, you can install more memory with no problem. Will ask Billy when he gets home though.
     
  5. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

  6. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Thanks, Ladies! I won't need to take this software of their's back until probably Friday so maybe I can do that tomorrow. Right now, I feel completely exhausted. I think it's just feeling like I can finally breathe a little easier and start figuring out a plan, hopefully.
     
  7. flutterby

    flutterby Fly away!

    A terabyte is 1,000 gigabytes. You really shouldn't have to back anything up, though. I've done it twice no problem.
     
  8. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    What kind of platform are you running and what kind of computer do you have? If it's an older Dell there could be issues....some of the memory is sold in pairs. If you have a tower a lot of times you can just add RAM for about $20 and increase your memory.

    Do you have a lap top or a tower?
     
  9. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Im just thinking that she should have the external for a safety net if she is going to be doing work from home in case anything happens. Computers do crash, viruses happen, etc. If you save work to an external, it is safe. Or at least a copy is safe somewhere other than on the computer.
     
  10. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    If I'm working as a consultant and self-employed, that doesn't mean I have to get a business license does it?
     
  11. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911

    Good thinking......

    I have a CLICK FREE......Best external back up out there. A little spendy for start up but keep in mind......your office space, your gas, a portion of your utilities, phone, electric, gas, garbage, and clothes, food, etc.....office supplies can ALL be taken as tax deductions.

    And I was thinking....Why can't you file for lower reduced mortgage payments under the law Obama passed with your mortgage co?
     
  12. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Yeah, there are some things I should back up just as a general protection. I lost all vacation photos from several years when the computer had that virus before. I can get some cd's though and back up- that's not a problem. Thanks for the reminder!

    Star- Dell, tower, approx 3- 3 1/2 years old, Windows XP home edition. I originally had a special media package and some kind of home office edition on it but since it got "cleansed" after the virus, it's hard to tell what I have left. LOL! The original hard drive went out at one point and had to be replaced. I'm not computer savy enough to understand it all but I think it has a lot of the original stuff, which was packaged/purchased to allow me to have this professional software (which takes a LOT of memory and graphics) and to allow graphic type games for difficult child.

    Speaking of difficult child- let's just hope I don't get caught in a "less than truth" about that one. To put it mildly, I was asked about him and didn't reveal that he's in trouble or in Department of Juvenile Justice.
     
  13. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Mortggage- that was the plan but they wouldn't do anything before me getting a job and submitting a letter to them from my employer stating my pay. OK, so I was going to try to get that in next week, then I found out today this work will be on a consultant basis, meaning I'm self-employed. I will need to call them tomorrow or Friday and see what they need now. I'm hoping they don;'t need a business license. I'm also hoping I get this second client so it will be more reputable/valid. The only thing that makes staying in this location worth it would be keeping the house.

    I can also check and see how this effects bankruptcy, if I choose to file for it. But I should- I was told I will not be able to get a job with the fed government of any sort for many years unless I do.
     
  14. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My external is from seagate. Its easy as pie. I just save to it as if I was saving to whichever folder or drive I wanted to normally. I have all my photo's moved over to it, all my music files moved over to it, everything basically. When I want to get something and use it, I just plug it in and pull it over to the computer. No fuss,, no muss. Made the computer run a whole lot faster too.
     
  15. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Is that one of those little things that plugs into a USB port?
     
  16. GoingNorth

    GoingNorth Crazy Cat Lady

    I was a tech (MS certified) for many years. Though adding RAM memory to a computer normally goes very easily' it is VERY important to back up your data before making ANY hardware changes
     
  17. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    Congrats on the self employment. Personally, I'd self incorporate as an LLC so that you don't lose your home over a litigious client. That would include the need to get a business license. There is legal software out there that will help you get this up & running.

    I'm saying this, especially if it turns into a long term situation.

    If you have a home office (a separate designated room is best) then it becomes part of a tax deduction. If you can swing it, I'd get a business computer with an external hard drive. That's the best way to conduct business at home. You don't want to mix business with "pleasure" in this case.

    I know that you're hurting financially however as money comes in & if business continues more regularly please put these 2 items at the top of your list to protect you & your assets.

    Obviously, ask for an consultation agreement letter from your client stating the estimated time of consultation, the potential income, etc. Put the letter together as a estimate/contract & have your client sign the estimate - that crosses your t's & dots your i's. Don't forget to invoice your clients monthly & keep copies of all payments as proof in income. Include a list of potential clients that you are contacting or who has contacted you.




     
  18. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    These are great ideas, TL!! I had always wanted to do this but had planned to wait until difficult child was out of high school. Then when I met that guy in my field last month who told me this was the time to do it, I got excited but I didn't think it looked like there was enough work in this field to make it happen. Now, even though I wasn't really pursuing this angle, it seems to have fallen in my lap. The main thing though is that after a couple of weeks, I can update my resume so even if I need to go back to work for someone else, it should be easier to get a job this way than showing no employment at all after being unemployed a year.

    Our governor is trying to get some things in place to help small businesses get started, so maybe this can turn out. difficult child just needs to understand that if he sabatoges this, we are both sunk.
     
  19. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I've been using my tiniest bedroom as a computer room/office and there is another room that has a separate outside entrance that became difficult child's "game room" for friends to visit because we don't have a family room. If this progresses, I can switch the two and I'd feel better because it would be harder for difficult child to sneak from the tiniest inside bedroom. He wouldn't like the smaller room but he'd get over it- he doesn't need as much space now that he'll no longer use that tiny miniature pool table and stuff that he played with a few years ago. He'll only use the old love-seat, table, and tv/games.

    Then again, that is the room that leaks and the one I was going to rent out (it also has a half bath in it). But I guess if business takes off, I wouldn't need to rent it out.
     
  20. LittleDudesMom

    LittleDudesMom Well-Known Member Staff Member

    K,

    Linda is offering you some good advice, but I think that's down the road for you (insofar as the LLC stuff). At this point, you don't need a business license to be an independent contractor. Go to the state tax dept website and the irs website for the information booklets on taxes and independent contractors. Make sure you know when your filing dates are - they are totally different. You don't have to speak to a person, you just search the publications by topic.

    To be honest, and not a balloon buster here, I don't believe the bank is going to take a two month temporary, self-employed assignment as a guarantee on payment - especialy given these tough economic times when the banks are pulling back.

    Congrats on the work - hope that second client falls into place.

    Sharon
     
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