Things to do in Atlantic City

I have a upcoming trip to Atlantic City planned so I figured I would do some research on what can be done while visiting the area. Most people think of it only as a gambling town but it is much more than that.

Gamble

As already mentioned, Atlantic City is known for its gambling. In essentially every resort on the strip there are casinos. There are games such as Poker, Black Jack, Roulette, Slot Machines, and much more. People and tour groups come in by the carloads and busloads. Casinos are open 24/7 so there is action at all hours of the day. There are many people who take gambling very seriously and do it all the time. If you are unfamiliar with the games, there are many resources to help you. Resources like Roulette Tips to Win can help explain the game and help you learn to be good and win money.

Beaches

Atlantic City is located on the shore of New Jersey. Since it is right on the water, most hotels and resorts offer nice beach accommodations. In the summertime you can rent chairs, cabanas and towels to help you enjoy your day. Kids can even enjoy this aspect of Atlantic City, it can keep them occupied while the parents are enjoying their time as well making it quite a family tourist attraction. Some hotels even offer beach bars so you can enjoy yourself while outside.

Shop

Many of the hotels in Atlantic City offer their own shopping but a big attraction are the outlets. Within walking distance from the majority of the resorts are a huge center of outlet shops that can meet everyone’s needs. Shops like Old Navy, JCrew, Nike, Banana Republic offer great products for great prices.

Eat

Another major thing to do in Atlantic City is going out to eat. All of the hotels offer restaurants from inexpensive grab and go to luxurious dining. A lot of famous chefs have started restaurants here from close by cities like Philadelphia and New York. Most of the fancier options are steak houses, Italian, Mexican and Asian styles. Definitely something to meet everyone’s needs.

Nightlife

The bars in Atlantic City are top notch. Once again, there is something for everyone. In one spot you could see a dive bar with seedy clientele and around the corner is a high end dance club. There are karaoke bars, jazz bars, piano bars, Irish bars…. You name it, the town has it in some form.

Next time you think about doing a weekend road trip, consider Atlantic City for a good time.

Creative Ways to Save on Energy Costs

If you’re budget conscious and also interested in taking some steps that could affect you for many years to come, a couple of creative ways to reduce your energy costs can go a long way towards accomplishing this. One of the most popular ways that you can accomplish cutting down your energy bill is to replace your old air conditioner.

Unfortunately, many homes come with air conditioners built in that are inefficient. Replacing just this one step with a more efficient system can reach up to a 60% savings on your electric bill. Ductless air conditioning is one option for someone who doesn’t want to go through the hassle of installing an entirely new air conditioning system. The great thing is that ductless air conditioning monitors and adjusts your temperature in your house in a very similar way to central AC, so you get all of the benefits without any of the installation hassle.

Ductless AC is extremely energy efficient with high SEER ratings and zone control, which can prevent you from cooling rooms you don’t often use. This can help you keep your energy costs down while still benefiting from an overall cool home. You can get a view of high seer ductless units here.

Another way to cut down on energy costs is to make the upfront investment for solar heating. When it comes time to approach the winter months, solar heating gives you all of the benefits of keeping your home nice and toasty without pulling directly from the electric grid entirely. Along with that, in the winter months, a great thing to do with your clothes is to avoid using the dryer and to hang them on a rack near a heater or a radiator. This alone can help cut down on one of the most common appliances that pulls a significant amount of energy and drives up your bill. If you’ve got a lot of family members, even just doing this once per week with a couple of loads of laundry can make a significant impact, and it still gets your home dry just as much as you need them.

Centralizing control with a smart home through your phone is another option for people who want to cut down on energy costs. New smart home technology allows you to see what’s happening in your home and to adjust energy control in order to keep an eye on things and keep your bills down. Most people don’t realize where some of the most common energy leaks in their home are, and just taking a couple of steps to implement smart home automation allows you to control things like lighting, heating, and cooling from the click of a button. Furthermore, many of these applications can analyze your data and find out where you’re spending a lot of money to keep the home turned on.

The inefficiency of central air pops up when it comes to the fact that cool air is pumped out all over the house, even rooms you may not need to cool. This means that you’re paying to cool rooms you don’t often use. This is a big problem for larger houses or in situations in which your house layout makes the system work harder to pump that cool air throughout. Perhaps one of the greatest aspects of ductless and smart home automation is that you can decide where you need to keep cool so that you’re not wasting energy or pushing up your bills for no reason.

All of these tips can help you not just with your energy bill, but in making improvements to your home, make it more sellable.

IR35 and You

IR35 is a tax law that was introduced in 1999 but is still poorly understood, criticized and abused. It was intended to ensure workers aren’t avoiding tax by supplying their services through an intermediary company, but who would otherwise be employees of the business they are providing services for.

It’s a much embattled law, which has caused problems for contractors who have been labelled ‘disguised employees’ by the government and seen either penalties or a significant drop in their take home pay as a result of being put onto an IR35 contract. Indeed, from April 2017 contractors have not been able to decide their own IR35 status.

The intention here is to make sure contractors and businesses don’t avoid paying taxes they should otherwise incur, and also to make sure contractors who are treated as employees get all the protections and employment rights they would enjoy if they were directly employed by the company.

If you’re investigated by HMRC, you need to be able to demonstrate that you are legitimately self employed and so do not fall under the IR35 regulations. There are a few simple things you can do to make sure you won’t fall foul of this. The first is talking to a lawyer: for a small fee, an employment lawyer can conduct an IR35 contract review and make sure you are in the clear. If not, you may be able to negotiate with your client to make the terms of contract clearer, should it be investigated.

If this is not an option, there are some other steps you can take. One of the easiest things you can do is take out business insurance to cover you as a sole trader or one person small business. Comprehensive business insurance is available for as little as £20 a month and strengthens your IR35 position considerably.

Similarly, having some stationary printed up for your business, like business cards and headed notepaper helps to create an image that you are legitimate business. These small indications add up in an HMRC investigation and could make all the difference.

Finally, it may be more advisable to work with private clients rather than those in the public sector. IR35 covers the public sector, to ensure it’s not abused and brought into disrepute. Tax law for privately funded business is less restricted and gives contractors a freer hand to find the work they need.

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