Posted on 01. Jul, 2013 by intern4u.
You arrive here, a new beautiful country, and you want to see it all! Then you realise Australia is a HUGE place, with vast distances between each town. So the question comes up, what is the best way to see the country?
1. Air travel. Travelling by plane is obviously the quickest way to get from place to place. It is also quite economical, with many airlines competing for your business. BUT, you do not see much of the country. Some of the greatest places to visit in Australia are off the beaten path, and cannot be reached by air. [...]
Posted on 01. Jul, 2013 by intern4u.
But don’t let that put you off! Getting a home loan in Australia is still very possible, and there are a few steps you can take to making the whole process easier:
1. Deposit, Deposit, Deposit! In order to be approved for a mortgage, you must have a deposit. In Australia, the bare minimum deposit is generally 5%, but in most cases you will need more. A good deposit of 20% will make the banks look at you much more favorably. [...]
Posted on 17. Oct, 2013 by Spencer Lancaster.
There has never been a better time to start a fitness business. With an aging population, many pensioners realize the way to enjoy retirement is to get their bodies into shape. People everywhere are embracing exercise and fitness as a permanent lifestyle choice.
Many fitness-based reality TV shows demonstrate the power of exercise and discipline to lose weight, motivating their viewers to follow suit.
Gyms right now are all the rage and you only need to look around at all the gym directory websites to see just how many are out there now. In the last 5 years, the number of fitness instructors has risen 36.7% compared with only 13.1% for all other occupations and 24 hour gyms are popping up everywhere!
Jobs within the fitness industry include running a gym or gym franchise, working in a gym, conducting an outdoor training program or running a personal training course business..
Who Starts a Fitness Business?
Often the people who start fitness businesses, be that a home based business, fitness franchise or stand-alone personal training business, are those who have used gyms and fitness programs for years. They know the business inside and outside from the viewpoint of a consumer.
They love working out and they know a thing or two about running a business. And yet other people are entrepreneurs that are interested in the business aspect more than the fitness aspect.
The business opportunities abound and the profits can be lucrative for a well-run business. Running a fitness business is most popular with young people. The median age across all fitness professions is 39 and the median age for instructors is 33.
Certification for Personal Training
In Australia, you must be a member of a registering organization (RTO) in order to get insurance and work as a personal trainer. A Certificate IV in Personal Training is the minimum allowed.
Here are some places that offer personal training courses throughout Australia. Here are few of the more well-known institutes.
Australian Institute of Personal Trainers – This facility has a range of classes and features campuses all over Australia.
Fitness Australia – This is the peak body of the Australian fitness industry and assists fitness professionals in continuing education credits and furthering their development.
Academy of Fitness Business – Based in the UK and Australia, this fitness training center offers the basic courses to get certified, including a FASTTRACK option to get finished quickly.
Australian Fitness Academy – This is a premier personal training institute with a wide variety of courses.
Fitness Training Academy – This business offers a self-paced course with a mentor for those with families and busy jobs.
Begin Fitness – Those in Victoria may be eligible for up an 80% savings on personal training courses through the Victorian Government Upskill program. Located in Mentone, Vic.
Max International College for Fitness Professionals – This is a well-respected organisation with international sites in New Zealand, China and South Africa. In Australia you will find them in Melbourne and Brisbane.
The College of Health and Fitness – This organisation offers low prices and on-line courses. It is in North Lakes, QLD.
This is just a handful of the many certifying organisations that provide personal training courses that mean government regulation. They can get you started on your journey to being a successful fitness business professional.
Many of these organisations also offer business and marketing classes in addition to fitness, anatomy and exercise classes. Be sure to talk to people already in the industry to hear their reports on the market conditions and the challenges involved.
Posted on 17. Oct, 2013 by Spencer Lancaster.
Like doctors, dentists much achieve a very high final year score at school and undergo significant university and on the job training.
The competition for placement is high and this means that dentistry is only an option for those who are dedicated to this career, although some use the course to transfer to medicine. There has been much bad press about dentistry as a career, but it can actually be very rewarding.
The following a four reasons that you should consider a career as a dentist.
The average income for a dentist in Australia is approximately $100,000, which can increase to well over $200,000 based on experience, industry recognition and the region that you work. You can expect a lower salary to begin with ($60-80k is common), but it doesn’t take long to be earning a really good salary.
Your income may also increase if you decide to run your own dental practice, and at this point your earnings potential is virtually unlimited. The strong income figures for dentists is one of the main factors that people choose this profession.
Opening a private practice is something that many dream of doing. This unlocks your earnings potential and allows you to run your own business. With the high number of Australians with health insurance that includes dental, the scope for further growth in the dental industry is significant.
Dentists that open a private practice can also choose to expand the business in the future and employ additional dentists. Very successful dentists have been able to open additional practices or even franchise their business.
Helping people with painful problems such as issues with wisdom teeth, or to prevent painful problems, is also one of the top reasons that people choose dentistry as a career.
Dentists help people with teeth and gum problems every day, including emergency repair work such as lost or damaged teeth in sporting accidents, assisting people with getting dental braces fitted and much more.
It is a very satisfying job and a job that people respect (even if many are a little fearful of!). The amount of people that come back to thank you will make the job worth every minute of study to get there!
A career as a dentist can also be very flexible. For example, some people choose to work on a casual or part time basis to spend more time with their family. You can also fill in for permanent dentists and work every now and then.
The salary is good enough that some dentists only work for half the year or for 2 or 3 days a week. This is a great way to have a flexible career and spend more time with family and friends.
I hope that you can now see that dentistry is a great career choice for anyone that wants a rewarding career, a great income and flexibility. You will need to study hard at school and be in the top students in your state to get acceptance into a dental program and the university course is also strenuous.
After this time you still need to complete a residency and training to prepare you for the “real world” dental work. If you can handle the rigors of this process then dentistry just might be the career choice for you!
Posted on 15. Oct, 2013 by Spencer Lancaster.
Methane is a naturally occurring compound and serves as the main component of natural gas. It is widely distributed in nature thereby making it an attractive alternate fuel source among other things. It is likewise the byproduct of organic matter decomposition without oxygen. After undergoing processing based on purity standards, methane becomes a renewable natural gas, usually called biogas.
As an alternative fuel source, methane can be used to power cars that are said to run under the same basic principles that govern conventional gasoline cars. It is even claimed that drivers will not know the difference. Although it is expected that there will be some differences between natural gas and gasoline fueled vehicles – like design of the fuel storage tank, engine and chassis, the flammability and ignition temperatures, among others – a typical natural gas (methane powered) car performs in the following manner: the biogas will first mix with air inside the cylinder of a four-stroke engine. Then a spark plug will cause the ignition to move the piston up and down making the car behave like any other regular car.
Besides serving as an alternative fuel source for motor vehicles – as the British engineers have proven with the “Dung” Beetle or the Bio-Bug – biogas is also known to be capable of providing electricity and heat. Methane is harvested from the emission of decomposing trash in landfills. This is actually one of the primary sources of the substance. Any amount of methane produced from the rotting garbage is gathered in pipes and further treated in nearby facilities in order to transform it to heat or electricity.
With more than 500 landfill-to-energy projects, the United States harness methane production from decomposing trash and uses the converted energy to as a source of electricity. Meanwhile, Germany has been utilizing biogas to power more than 3 million homes starting 2009 and probably even more today. Sweden also has grander plans. Not content with electricity, they have been using biogas to power a train that transports passengers between two cities that are 75 miles apart and this started in 2005.
Another use for methane is in the form of fertilizers. In order to harness methane in fertilizer form, an organic and nutrient rich mixture called Biogas-slurry is required. Biogas-slurry requires direct application to crops to increase agricultural productivity. This is supported by studies that show an observed estimated increase of 25% in productivity as opposed to applying manure directly onto the fields. Furthermore, the biogas-slurry saves money intended for chemical fertilizers, which introduce negative impacts on nature. Plants and crops likewise benefit directly from the natural methane-rich fertilizer since they tend to absorb more nutrients and minerals essential for their nourishment and growth.
Studies have shown that natural gas in methane form translates to a reduction of atmospheric greenhouse gas release by 20 percent. Use of methane natural gas likewise lessens the amounts of carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, and non-methane organic gas released into the air. Hence, the reason natural gas is dubbed the cleaner alternative to gasoline and any other fossil fuel derivatives.
Some of the countries rolling out the natural (methane) gas initiative are Sweden, Germany, Austria and the United States. In Sweden, there are over 11,000 natural gas vehicles running on biogas while Germany, Austria, and the United States are looking to follow suit and are currently showing a 20% market share for natural fuel.
Posted on 17. Jul, 2013 by Spencer Lancaster.
There are different kinds of healthcare coverage that’s out on the market today and having to compare the features of each kind can be a bit overwhelming. But since it’s a necessity to buy one, it pays to do your homework so you can choose more appropriately. In truth, all these companies are selling just one basic product, a health plan. The big difference lies in the amount of coverage that they give and the manner in which healthcare is given to a patient. Studies show that of all the factors that are involved in health insurance, the most important to consumers is the quality of service that is given.
There are key points that you can use to make the selection process easier for you. Ask around for feedback from family and friends. They will give you an honest evaluation so you can’t go wrong with that. If you have family doctors that you are going to, ask your physician if he’s accredited with any healthcare provider and include that on the top of your list. This goes the same for the hospitals and clinics that you frequent. It makes sense to buy a plan that will allow a member to avail of services at facilities that’s been tried by the members themselves. Then consider the amount of coverage that you can afford. Since you’ll be enrolling all the members of your family, you are going to need a substantial amount of money to cover the costs.
This is the hard fact though, it’s not going to be cheap to have a good comprehensive healthcare plan but it’s an essential coverage to have. It is your protection from the even higher costs of medical expenses. But with all the products out there, you can be easily tricked into settling for a cheap plan that will cost you more in the end. Some features of a good health plan include:
• Coverage for different kinds of medical care such as outpatient services, emergency care, laboratory and other diagnostic tests, preventive care and hospitalization. You cannot predict what kind of care you’ll require in the future so it makes sense to have all the different types accounted for. Ask for the cost of including miscellaneous services such as prescription drugs, maternity care and other diagnostic exams so you can evaluate if you can afford them
• Discuss the estimates for your out-of-pocket expenses. Knowing how much you will shell out when you use your plan helps you appreciate the big picture. These figures will determine if the plan that you’re considering will be an advantage for you or drain your finances even more.
• Read the details of the plan, this includes the fine print. Having a good understanding of what benefits you are entitled to will make the whole process smoother for you. Pay attention to the coverage exclusions and limitations so you can plan ahead.
Because your health is one of your greatest assets, you have to be equipped properly to handle any kind of medical emergency. Having a healthcare plan buys you the protection but if you encounter other difficulties when seeking medical care, it also helps to know your legal rights and privileges. For proper guidance regarding these issues, check out http://www.crowemulvey.com, to ensure that the treatment that you are getting is the one that you entitled to.
Posted on 17. Jul, 2013 by intern4u.
After I went through the process of buying a house (article coming soon), I had to get home insurance. As with vehicle insurance, it is really important to look carefully at what each insurer includes and excludes from their policy. I went through the process a few years ago, so a lot could have changed since then. But while I was doing it I discovered several important points:
1. Inclusions. Some insurers, even the largest, most reputable ones, exclude very obvious things for no apparent reason. One example of this was bikes. I cycle a lot, so I wanted an insurance policy that covers my bike not just at home, but also when it’s tied up outside a café. I am aware that this is a non-standard type of policy, so I wasn’t surprised when many insurers didn’t offer it. However, I was surprised when I discovered that some policies did not cover the bike when they were in the garden shed! It shows that you really have to be careful, and read each quote carefully.
2. Agreed value. On top of cycling, I’m a bit of an audiophile. This means I have a lot of audio gear at home. Some of it is pretty old, but very expensive. I wanted all of this covered. In order to get it covered for a fair price, I looked for an insurer that would value my items at an agreed value, not what they thought it was worth. If you have any hobbies or interests that lead you to have expensive and not-so-common stuff, definitely look for an insurer that gives agreed value.
3. Exclusion. Are you a bit forgetful? Sometime don’t turn the alarm on or lock all the windows? If so, be careful with your home insurance. Some policies will not pay out if you left the window unlocked or didn’t set the alarm. I chose a policy that was a bit more lenient with these things, in case the worst does ever happen.
Another big exclusion is regarding fire damage. If parts of the house are damaged by fire, who pays for your accommodations while the house is repaired? These repairs can take months, so it is definitely worth looking at this issue before you agree to a policy.
Finding an insurer that gives you all of the options you want can be difficult. The best thing to do is to get a home insurance quote from several different businesses, and see which ones give you the policy you need. When doing this, be sure to not just take the cheapest, but actually read the policy. It is boring, but worth it.
Posted on 05. Jul, 2013 by intern4u.
Before I came out to Australia, I had to pack up my life in the states. This is much, much harder than it sounds. Of all the things I had to organise and sell, my car ended up being the most difficult. There are several options for selling your car, and I will go through them here.
1. Craigslist/Auto trader. This is what I tried to do. I had my car listed for weeks. I got plenty of calls, and made 14 appointments for people to come and see the car. Only 4 showed up, and those that did were umming and erring, and then made stupid offers. I was not impressed. I ended up wasting weeks with no result.
2. Selling to a car dealer. This option had its benefits. It is easy, and you are virtually guaranteed a sale. The downsides are the low amount of money you will receive, and in order to get even close to what the car is worth you will have to spend hours negotiating with the dealer. I hate this. Negotiating with car dealers is incredibly frustrating, and I will do anything to avoid it. This is why I chose the third option.
3. Online auto trader. Businesses like this work by having a database of car dealers located in virtually every state in America. You submit an inquiry on their website, giving them all the details of the car you are trying to sell. They get back to you with a price, and if you accept it the deal is done. I found it the easiest way to sell my car, and the offer they gave me was much better than the highest trade in offer I received. There are several companies like this, but the one I used was boomsold.
If I could go back in time and give myself some advice, I would be telling myself to go straight to an online auto trader. I found it to be the quickest, easiest and best value way to do it. I probably could have got more money through selling it privately, but I value my time too much to spend weeks trying to get an extra $1000.
Posted on 01. Jul, 2013 by intern4u.
When you buy a car in Australia, you must pay to register it. Depending on the state you register the car in, you may have compulsory 3rd party insurance built into the cost of registration, or you may have to buy it separately.
There are 3 different kinds of car insurance in Australia:
1. Compulsory 3rd party insurance. This insurance covers the cost of medical bills for anyone you may hit or injure with your car. It is compulsory to have this insurance in order to drive your car on the road
2. 3rd party property. This insurance is optional to have. In the case of an accident that is your fault, it covers the cost of the damage to the other person’s car. It is a very good idea to have at least this level of cover, so if you hit someone’s Ferrari you don’t lose your house.
3. Comprehensive insurance. This is exactly what it sounds like. It covers not only the other person’s car, but yours also, even if you are at fault in the accident. This is definitely worth having if your car is new, or if you use your car for work. In order to get a car loan (article coming soon, for now, visit www.ryda.org.au’s article on car loan options) you must have comprehensive insurance.
After you have decided what level of cover you want, you must shop around for an insurer. Like with health insurance, the things included by each insurer vary wildly. There are several factors to consider with comprehensive insurance:
1. Agreed value. Some insurers will only insure your car for market value, a value which diminishes each year. Some will set an agreed value, and will pay out that, regardless of the cars real worth. Some also offer new for old replacement for life, meaning you get the original value of the car, no matter how old it is.
2. Inclusions. Do you want a windscreen policy? Do you have a GPS unit in the car that you want covered? Do you want a rental car paid for while yours is being fixed? These are all things you need to look at before you choose an insurer.
Posted on 01. Jul, 2013 by intern4u.
Australia has comprehensive and virtually free medical care for all its citizens. The key work here is citizens. If you move to Australia it will take time to become a permanent resident, let alone a citizen. In the time before you are covered by Australia’s medical care, you will need to have private health insurance.
Private health insurance in Australia is an industry with a lot of competing companies; therefore the prices are quite reasonable. When shopping around different insurers it is important to make note of a few things:
1. Inclusions. This is the single most important part of any insurance policy. There is a large difference between what some companies include, or don’t include. Work out what parts of the cover are most important to you (i.e. purely medical cover, or do you also want dental and chiropractic) and find a policy that has it.
2. Dependents. Not all family policies extend the same amount of cover to children as they do to the parents. Again, it is very important to read all the fine print, and see who is covered.
3. Waiting periods. Some health insurance in Australia comes with waiting periods before you can claim for some services. For example, the cover I took gave me medical and emergency coverage from day one, but I had to wait 6 months before I could claim any dental or optical work.
There is a government website in Australia that helps you to choose health insurance, where all of the inclusions and exclusions are laid out in very plain English, making it much easier to get a real idea of the value of each policy. Having said that, if you’re moving to Australia form the USA you will probably be surprised to see the reasonable premiums charged by insurance companies.