• 10 Unique Ways To Make Money

    In a world that’s driven by money, there are plenty of ways that us mere mortals can make a little extra cash when needed. Here are ten unique ways to make money right now.

    Sell Your Photos

    Fancy yourself a bit of a photographer? Well, you can now make money from your snaps, with stock sites like Shutterstock and Adobe, who are always looking to buy photos. It doesn’t matter if you’re a professional or not, if they look good and it’s a picture they’ll need, they’ll buy it from you.

    Rent Out Your Home

    Renting out a spare room can be great if you’re after a chunk of regular income each month. As long as you’re happy sharing your space and vet your tenants, this is a great way of making money.

    Sell Your Skills

    Selling your skills is very much easier than it used to be, especially as there are now so many websites that can sell everything from gardening to designing a website. Put some of that spare time to use and make a bit of cash while doing it.

    Deliver Meals

    If you want a bit of exercise, you can always deliver meals to those who order takeouts. As winter draws in, there will probably be a lot more people staying in than eating out. You could do deliveries by car but why not save on gas and get your daily dose of exercise.

    Get Paid To Search And Listen

    You can now be paid to search the web, crazy right? A site called Qmee, which is an extension added onto your browser, will offer you cash rewards on your searches. There’s also a site called slicethepie, where you can listen to unsigned artists and bands and get paid.

    Fill In Surveys

    Online surveys can be a great way to make money, and they can require very little thinking or time on your part. For example, vindale surveys review, you can do in the comfort of your own home while watching tv or maybe do it when traveling to work.

    Become A Secret Shopper

    If you love shopping then becoming a secret shopper won’t even feel like work. Secret shoppers are hired by the business when they want to see how their employees are performing and how functional the business is.

    Teach Classes Online

    If you enjoy teaching and have something to offer, you might want to earn a little money by teaching classes online. With so many people around the world, using the web, you can earn plenty of money.

    Start A Blog

    Blogging can be a great way of earning some money as many companies are now looking to the everyday person to promote their products or services. It’s pretty easy to start a blog, and you can write about anything you want. With enough of a following, you can even take it full-time.

    With so many choices, there’s something to suit everyone, and you’ll be making some extra money in no time. It’s perfect for when those emergencies happen!

    admin

    Find me on: Web | Twitter

    Advice For Young Adults On Protecting Your Finances

    Picture Source

    Life as a young adult is tough. There are so many new responsibilities with which you have to become acquainted. Most importantly, you have to start thinking about money. Maybe you did a paper round or another part-time job as a teenager, but you probably didn’t have to make big financial decisions. You probably didn’t have to think about mortgage repayments, utility bills, debt, and other costs that most adults face in life. If it’s all new and overwhelming then here’s some advice for young adults on protecting your finances.

    Lower your monthly bills.

    Lowering your monthly bills is the first piece of helpful advice to take on board if you’re a young adult who’s trying to look after their finances. Obviously, cutting back on luxury expenses such as excessive nights out is important, but there’s a lot of money to be saved on your basic living costs if you take a closer look at your monthly bills. Think of ways that you could spend less money on the necessities in life without cutting corners (you don’t have to live on a diet on Pot Noodles). It’s possible. For example, you could save money on your monthly food shop by using coupons and online discount codes. Plenty of supermarkets also offer loyalty cards that give you redeemable points if you scan them at the checkout.

    Now that you’re an adult, you’re probably going to have to use credit to help you afford the bigger expenses in life (e.g. a down deposit on your first house or car). You might want to do some research regarding how to get a lower interest rate on credit cards. That could save you a lot of money on debt repayments. Borrowing money isn’t always a bad idea, as long as you can afford to pay it back in regular installments. Certain costs are unavoidable in life, but there are always ways to lower your monthly bills if you do your research and shop around a little.

    Invest.

    Every young person should invest. The earlier you start, the more wealth you’ll have available when you eventually retire. Obviously, that day is decades away, but you’ll thank yourself for making smart financial decisions when you were younger. You should take a look at the property market; that’s a good starting point for investors who are starting out. There are big returns to be made, whether you buy properties to lease or sell. You could also invest in a stocks and shares Isa if you do enough research to understand the market. This isn’t the kind of investment that can be used as a savings account; it’s the kind of investment that’ll slowly build you up some substantial savings for the future. It could serve as a nice little addition to any existing savings plans you have set up. But the following point will help you with that.

    Start saving for your future.

    As mentioned in the previous point, protecting your finances wisely is about thinking ahead. Obviously, you want to be financially secure in the present, but covering your costs today doesn’t guarantee that’ll you have enough money for tomorrow. You should start putting aside a tiny portion of your income on a regular basis. You don’t want to invest all of your disposable income. Some of it should go towards a savings account that gradually accumulates over time. If you always spend your earnings before you have a chance to save them then set up a standing order to automatically transfer 10% of your monthly income to your savings account on payday. That way, you’ll be able to start saving for your future.

    *collaboriative post
     
    admin

    Find me on: Web | Twitter

    The Price Is Right: Everything You Need To Know About Pricing Your Property

    When selling a property, there is no denying that getting the price right is one of the most critical aspects. A lot of people assume that lowering the asking price is the best way to secure a quick sale but this is not always the case. Below, we will reveal everything you need to know about pricing your property.

    https://pixabay.com/en/key-house-house-keys-home-estate-2114455/

     

    Price is not the problem

    Price matters, of course, it does! You need to price your home correctly, but you certainly don’t need to take the haggling approach to selling your property. The key is to make sure the valuation is well-researched and you have taken the perspective of several professionals. If your home is struggling to sell, you can be confident that the price is not the problem. Why? Because buyers don’t buy based on the amount your home is on the market for.

    If someone was not interested in your property when it cost £240,000 they are not going to be interested if you offer it to them for cheaper. No one bargain hunts when looking for a home. Yes, you look for value, but you don’t look for the cheapest property. Let’s say you are shopping for a new top. You may go on River Island’s website and click to rearrange the tops in order of cheapest to most expensive. Would you ever do that with properties? No, you would type in your price range instead, i.e. £200,000 to £250,000. A buyer sets their budget from the off-set. They search based on this budget. So, if they view your home and they don’t make an offer, it’s definitely not because of the price!

    How to value your home

    Have you ever wondered how your estate agent valued your home? How did they get to the value they suggested? Let’s take a look at some of the main aspects of your property that will determine its value…

    •   Property type
    •   Age of your home
    •   The features and fixtures of your property
    •   The standard of building work and the state of repair
    •   What locality your home is situated in
    •   If local amenities are available

    These six factors will generally help you to determine your home’s worth. So, why use an estate agent’s assistance at all? So you can take advantage of their inside expertise.

    Estate agents will factor in the market value of your property. They do this by looking at several different factors, like…

    •   The asking price of properties comparable to yours in the local area
    •   Sale price of comparable properties
    •   Demand and supply forces
    •   The strength of the local market

     

    You can use these factors too to get a better understanding. Take a look at this page on HDB Yishun. You can zoom in on properties based on the street they are on, so you can get a fully accurate picture regarding the property market in the area. These are the sort of resources you should be using.

    So now you have a rounded view of the various factors that are taking into account in order to determine the value of your home. It’s definitely worth doing your own research but you should also get several estate agents to value your home as well. You can then use this to come up with the best asking price!

     

    What do when your estate agent doesn’t believe in your asking price?

    Did you decide on your asking price? If so, you may be happy with it, but is your estate agent? This is a question you need to ask them. Don’t shy away from the answer! If your estate agent is not confident in your asking price it will undoubtedly sabotage your chances of selling your property – and your viewers will get a sense that something is not quite right.

    Unfortunately, estate agents aren’t magicians! They can’t sell your house at literally any asking price you desire. If they don’t feel like they can sell your house at the price you have valued it they are going to feel somewhat disengaged. They won’t put in as much effort to sell your home because they probably feel like it’s not worth it. Plus, all it takes is for them to accidentally say ‘it’s always worth making an offer’ for the viewer to dedicate that the agent is not confident in your price and thus you may be willing to budge.

    So, what can you do about it? Well, it is up to you to make your estate agent feel confident about the price you are asking for your home. The only way to do this is to back it up with cold hard facts. Do your research on comparable properties in the market and if you can do a price per square foot comparison table you should.

     

    Is the number 9 stopping your home from selling?

    What is the difference between a property that is on the market for £299,999 and one that’s available for £300,000? A pint of milk? A bar of chocolate? A trip to Poundland? Actually, the difference could be receiving no offers and selling your home! £1 may be nothing in monetary terms, but it is everything when it comes to marketing your property.

    Why? Well, there are several reasons! Firstly, £299,999 is quite simply less appealing! No one likes the bargain feel of buying a house. You purchase within your budget and that’s that. It works in supermarkets with baked goods priced at 99p instead of £1.00 but it doesn’t work with properties.

    You are also putting yourself at a big disadvantage when placing your property on portals. Popular portals, like Rightmove, allow people to search for a property based on their price range in the following format, for example, £250,000 – £300,000. If you put your house on the market at £300,000 not only will you fall into the category mentioned, but also the £300,000 – £350,000 range. So, you double your exposure! But, a house priced at £299,999 will only fit into the first section, so you limit your chances to sell.

     

    Does dropping the asking price ever work?

    I guarantee if I was to randomly go up to a bunch of people on the street and ask them what they would do if their home wasn’t selling most of them would say ‘lower the price’. This is one of the biggest myths about selling your home! Rarely does it ever work.

    Generally speaking, there is only one exception to the rule, and this is when the market has changed significantly. If your home has been on the market for a while it is always a good idea to get it re-valued. You may need to adapt the price in order to accommodate a changing market. If your neighbours have houses on the market and theirs are priced much lower than yours, you need to get back in the competition.

    But, lowering your asking price just because you are panicking and views have stalled is never a good idea! It doesn’t say ‘wow bargain home’ it says ‘problem home’. A price reduction indicates that there is something wrong with your property. If you do not have confidence in what you are selling, why is a buyer going to? Let me tell you a little secret: buyers never purchase a house based on price!

    *collaborative post
    admin

    Find me on: Web | Twitter

    Friendly Money Advice To Give To New Graduates

    Graduating is liberating in many ways. Finally after years of studying and taking exams, you’re free from the classroom or lecture hall and can do whatever it is you want in life. You will finally get the taste of true freedom where no one asks anything from you and you can be your own person. This also means you don’t have anyone to hold your hand financially. Speaking of money, it’s time to formulate a plan of how you are going to pay off your student loans. The average student will have tens of thousands of pounds of debt and the universities and student loan companies want you to make payments as soon as possible. It’s therefore priority that you start to save more than you spend. But since it’s their first time out in the real world, we need to give them the best advice possible.

    Move in small

    After having lived in student digs, possibly sharing it with other people, it’s tempting to buy a place that is large. However, we must urge graduates to not get a place they won’t be able to afford in hard times. Don’t allow their wants to overcome their needs. Bigger places often come with hefty rent prices, and you never know when or if they will be in danger of losing their job. Anything could happen really, because the economy is not in our own hands. The reasons for living frugally and renting a small apartment far outweigh getting a large apartment for just one person. And this goes for anyone, regardless of what profession they are in.

      

    Monkey on the shoulder

    No doubt that graduates are already thinking about how their student loans will affect their lifestyle. As considerate adults we need to give them advice on how to form a plan and start paying it back. The longer it takes them they more they will pay. Advise them that they don’t want to reach their 40s and 50s with student loan payments still being taken out of their bank account. Direct them toward a cost of debt calculator which can sum up what they owe. Utilise the student loan hero website and tools, so an easy plan can be made for them. When this is in order, all they have to do is stick to it. Half the battle is over because they now know how much they need to save each month to live a decent life while also keeping the monkey off their shoulder.

    Time for partying is over

    Now that they have left the confines of their colleges and universities, they need to live frugally until they have made significant savings. The time for partying and wasting money on drinks is over. They should stick to going out to bars and clubs once a week at the most. They will save a lot of money over the coming months and years just by not going to drinking holes around the city they live in.

    Saving money and one day becoming debt free should be every graduates main focus. They will never get the burden of debt off their backs until they learn to live responsibly on their own and not expect assistance from anyone. Yes, it’s to be a grown up!

    *collaborative post
    admin

    Find me on: Web | Twitter

    Update: The past 12 months – Where have I been?

    If you’re reading this, thank you. I don’t know if I need to explain but I feel like I have to.

    I’ve not been around for around 12 months, away from the blog, YouTube, Social media and I feel quite liberated having given myself a break.

    I have had Leah XL as a blog (in various guises) since 2010 and have enjoyed the process of either reviewing something and giving my opinion or sharing how I feel to people who enjoy what I have to say.

    update 1

    You may have noticed that I have been on hiatus and I wanted to update you on what’s been happening.

    October 2017

    • I started a new job. A job that I have done before but in a different sector and an hour away from home. The job is high pressured (which I really enjoy) and is deadline driven. I needed to focus my energy in this job to get to know the business and get settled in.
    • Claire, my wife, had a serious change in her health. One morning she woke up and fell to the floor. She was signed off for two months and the final diagnosis was prolapsed discs in her back, one of which is pushing on to the sciatic nerve causing not only pain but debilitating numbness.
    • Rupert (our dog) diagnosed with early stage kidney failure (don’t worry – it’s controlled very well by diet and he will live forever)

    December 2018

    • A very busy time at work, many late nights and time away from home

    March 2018

    • Due to the health issues Claire changes jobs from an industry she has been in since leaving university. An easier job but with less money

    April 2018

    • Claire and I start an online retail business to help subsidise the gap in earnings.

    May 2018

    • My mum, who is on dialysis because of Kidney failure, has been taken off the donor list due to some other issues. Lots of worry and stress

    July 2018

    • Mum given diagnosis that heart isn’t working well and will need an operation

    August 2018

    • No operation date yet, many delays in the pre-op prepping and procedures.
    • Claire and I decide to join Weight Watchers to help with taking the pressure off her back.

    And here we are in September.

    These aren’t excuses but I am in a good place (although there is still stuff happening with mum) but I needed the break. Not only from my blog but also from social media and YouTube.

    I thought I could maybe turn my blog in to a full time business but I actually think there is warrant in me doing this as a release, as a hobby, as a place for me to take to when I need to. Mainly as I already work in a high pressured environment, why make my blog somewhere high pressure too?

    I also fell out of love with Makeup. I have sold so much and decluttered it out of my life (don’t get me wrong there is still so much) but I needed to reevaluate the balance of buying makeup that wasn’t being used for review purposes and saving money as a family. Of course my family comes first.

    So what’s next?

    LeahXL Blog:

    I am coming back. I am coming back with a blog that is more personal. Less review focused and is thoughtful and eclectic.

    I want to talk about married life, owning a gorgeous pup, making lifestyle changes, health in general, family, work and all the things inbetween.

    Leah XL Youtube:

    This is being shut down. I know, I know. It’s got a good following but it’s no longer who I am. Fear not though – I still do some live videos on a new channel to do with Ebay (not massively regular but some times) so if you want to find it and learn more about our business then please check it out here.

    Social Media:

    • Instagram – I have changed this back to a personal account. I don’t need it to be business and I am just not great at a stylised, perfectly lit feed. I can’t do it. It’s not natural to me. Instead it will be filled with fun things and life.
    • Twitter – Used for interactions but not as frequently as I used to and not promoting every single post constantly. I want it to be organic not mechanic.
    • Facebook – I know it seems outdated but I still use facebook and I will continue to post my posts to there. It’s a great place that people still use so I will carry on.
    • Snapchat – Not happening – It just drains my battery. I just can’t. (ANYONE ELSE?)
    • Others – Any others that have surpassed my 37 year old brain will just fall in to the metaphoric Social Media bin.

    I see this post as a new start. A turning point in my life and there will definitely be some changes happening (good and bad) during the course of my time writing.

    If you have any questions please comment below. If you want to know more and want me to do future posts about general life updates then again, comment below.

    My email, twitter inbox and facebook messenger is always open so please get in touch if you want to chat.

    Leah

     

    admin

    Find me on: Web | Twitter

    Like my page!