Can You Run A Business Through Ebay?

Long story short: yes you can! But there’s going to be quite a bit of legwork involved, considering the auctioning platform you’re using and the lack of traditional packaging to send your items off in. And those are just a couple of the main worries you’re going to have to think about!

Ebay is a great site for getting rid of your clutter and making a few pounds off of your forgotten old goods, and because of this, it’s incredibly popular amongst the family generation. So if you’re looking to bulk out your income a little, and open up a business via an very well established platform, here’s a few more things to consider.

Can you take plenty of professional photos?

ebay selling taking photos

Your photo's need to be a good as you possibly can get them so your items stand out int he crowd!

You’ll Need a Permanent Shipping Option

If you’re planning to take your ebay account full term with some business ideas, then you’re going to have to consider just how much money the shipping costs are going to take out of you. They make up a huge portion of your profits margin, as most ebay customers won’t place a bid with you if they’re responsible for the shipping, and there's no free option!

Remember, there’s quite a few couriers on the market, so trying to find a long term ebay courier can be hard, but it’s not impossible, even as a small business.

Be sure to shop around for the best quotes out there, and make sure you’re always getting the bang for your buck - if you need both big and small delivery, and you need to be able to ship internationally as well, you’re going to need to fork out for bigger contract terms. And you’re going to want some kind of contract with the courier of your choosing, as you’ll be using them a lot in the foreseeable future!

You’re Going to Need Feedback

Even before you start running your account as a business, you’re going to need some feedback from the people you’ve already sold to, as it helps to build a much better sense of trust between you and anyone surfing the ebay search engine. Sellers come from all over the world, have few regulations put upon them, and therefore you have to rely on the word of others.

Ebay puts a huge emphasis on buyer/seller feedback, and both giving and receiving this whenever a transaction occurs is standard practice on the site, so it’s only natural that you’re going to need some good feedback before you even get started. So be sure to use your account as a casual seller before you properly set up shop, and try to get at least 20 positive reviews before you move into making it a proper side hustle.

Running a business through ebay can be a hard option to set up, but if you’ve got the items to sell, as well as the reviews to back you up, you’re well on to a winner here. It’s an approachable business model, so be sure to use it!

The Surprising Issues That Can Cost A Marriage

It seems that it’s more common these days for marriages to end in a divorce than couples sticking it out until they are older. Many grandparents and older generations have marriages spanning years. But today it seems it’s easier to walk away than work on the commitment you made.

There are a lot of causes of divorce, but perhaps you may find that you are reaching for the family law solicitors numbers too quickly. Some marriages can be resolved with good old-fashioned communication. Here are some of the surprising issues that cause a marriage to end and a few tips to avoid it if you find yourself in that situation.

marriage breakdown divorce

Young age

It may seem obvious, but people who marry in their late teens are more likely to have a marriage end in divorce than someone in their 20’s or older. By about age 22 the percentage rate falls significantly. It would appear that the level of maturity has a lot to do with these marriages ending sooner than intended. Other than delaying marriage there isn't much that can be done to avoid a young marriage ending in divorce. Of course, there are couples out there who have beaten the odds and are still going strong. If you married young and are thinking about calling time on your married life just take a moment to go back to that age you were when you made the commitment. What was it that made you do it in the first place? Try and remember what you loved about each other.

Insecurity

Having either one or both of you insecure in a relationship isn’t particularly healthy. It’s quite surprising that feeling insecure would be a reason a marriage would end. This may have a lot to do with a couple not communicating how they are feeling. Health issues could also have an effect causing depression and anxiety towards your marriage. Communication is key to resolving issues of insecurity. A lot of the time your partner may just need reassurance. It is advisable not to get frustrated in the situation but to be there to offer support.

A change of circumstance

If all of a sudden you are struggling financially or if circumstances have changed, then these factors can have a strain on marriage. One of the main marital vows is “through better or worse” meaning you should be able to stick it out whatever the circumstance. Sadly, some people can’t cope with the strain a financial situation can put on a marriage. Communication is another way to resolve the issues. Loss of jobs or being to blame for a change of circumstance can make you feel inferior. But a marriage means you are part of a team, and that’s exactly how you will get through the tough time.

As much as these issues are surprising reasons a marriage may end, with a bit of time, effort and communication they could be resolved. I hope this inspires you to work on your differences.

How To Learn a New Skill with A Hectic Schedule

When you have kids, it becomes tricky very quickly to find the time to do anything for yourself. While it is, of course, essential that you are there to support your kids, you should not neglect yourself, and it is important to find time to follow your own pursuits. One of the best things that a mum can do is to learn a new skill because this is a unique challenge which can be highly rewarding.

How can you go about finding the time to learn a new skill when you have a hectic schedule? 

Online Learning

In today’s internet-driven world, it has never been easier to learn a skill thanks to the endless resources online. It means that you can learn at a time to suit you, no matter where you are. There are endless resources online for learning new skills and even qualifications, so it should not be too hard to do, whether you are learning a musical instrument, learning a new language, programming, web design or any other skill.

Create Regular Time

You need to commit to learning a new skill by setting aside a regular amount of time throughout the week to do so. It could be an hour once the kids go to bed, while they are doing their homework or during your lunch break. If you are truly struggling to find the time, you could get up a little earlier in the day or stay up a little later. Alternatively, you may be able to use your commute depending on the skill.

Classes

Although online learning has many benefits, it can also be difficult to commit to it, especially when you are trying to learn in a busy household. This is why it can also be helpful to sign up to classes. If you wanted to learn Mandarin, for example, then signing up to classes at the Chinese School London will encourage you to make the time to learn. Additionally, many skills like this will require interaction and working with others, which is another reason why classes can be helpful.

Learn With Someone Else

Following on from this, it can also be helpful if you have a friend or family member to learn the skill with so that you make a commitment to learning. You could even learn with the kids as a fun family activity. By doing so, it can help you to progress because you will be learning at the same time, meaning you can help each other, talk about the skill and immerse yourself in it.

Set Goals

Learning a new skill is always a challenge, and it can be easy to give up if you have a busy schedule and you don't see any results. It can be helpful to set small, achievable goals so that you can see how you are progressing as you learn. Doing so should inspire you to stick with it and carry on learning.

It is important for parents to spend time on themselves. One of the best ways to do this is to learn a new skill. No matter what skill this is, it can be hard to fit learning around a busy schedule, but hopefully, the above will help you to find the time and develop a new skill.

Organising Your House With A Kid Friendly System

Your house is the haven of your life, and there's a lot of love and respect you put into those four walls. Your children, however, might not feel the same way about them, and forever leave their toys strewn around and put felt tip marker on the wall when they get too creative with their colouring book!

Kids can be messy, there’s no two ways around that, but if you have a proper organisation system that’s both effective and fun, you know your kids won’t have too much trouble in sticking to it! And that’s where a post like this can come in: here’s a couple of the best ways you can organise your house in a kid friendly system… or you can attempt to at least!

You can just imagine the mess that’ll be left after this! 

kids pillow fight

Have a ‘Dump Spot’

We don’t mean the rubbish bin, which can be overflowing when you’ve got 2 or more kids in the house, but an actual spot near the door or in the living room where kids can keep the things they need for tomorrow all in one place. It’s an easy way to make sure they’re grabbing everything they need for school in the morning, and never leaving without their maths book again.

You can assign boxes to this spot, to make sure each of your children has a designated area to put their things, whether it be their pencil case or their lunchbox. And it’s an easy way for you to make sure they start taking some responsibility - if they don’t grab what they need from a special spot that makes it easier for them to remember, they have no one to get stroppy with as a result!

Give Kids Their Own Areas

If your children feel like they’re never have any privacy or ownership over their own home, they’re not going to be too helpful in the organisation process. You want your children to always feel comfortable at home, and for example, teaching them that their toys belong to them means you keep them that bit happier. But on the other hand, it shows that their parents won’t be along to take them away or tidy them up, making them a little bit more responsible in the process…

After all, by teaching them that that area belongs to them and them alone, and that Mummy won't be along to tidy it up if they lose a toy they love, they’ll do everything they need to to keep it clean and tidy! And companies like Contemporary Architects can help you out with introducing this idea to your home, whether it be via a secret room/hatch within their own bedrooms, or an entirely new playroom extension you’ve always wanted to add onto your house.

Ready to get organised, as well as have your kids onboard? Well, now’s your chance to make sure your kids are growing up happy and healthy, within a house they helped to create themselves!

How To Keep Insurance Premiums Low

How To Keep Insurance Premiums Low

There is often the misconception that all insurance policies are extremely expensive. Many people do not even consider the possibility of taking out the likes of life insurance and health insurance, as they simply assume they will not be able to afford it. However, this is certainly not the case.

Generally speaking, there are some sorts of policies that are more expensive than others, for example, international health insurance is more expensive than local insurance. Nonetheless, this is because you gain from more cover and a greater degree of benefits. It is all about value. Yet, this doesn’t mean you have to break the bank in order to take out this type of policy. Discover various ways you can keep your premiums low, no matter the policy you are taking out…

Pay On A Yearly Basis – If you can afford to pay annually rather than monthly you will be able to make savings. There are a lot of insurance providers that offer substantial discounts for anyone that makes yearly payments.

Consider Increasing Your Excess – Excess is the amount of money you need to pay before your insurer will cover you. If you increase your excess you will benefit from lower monthly payments. Needless to say, this does not mean you should increase your excess to an unmanageable amount. You do not want to find yourself in a situation where you need health care or a vehicle repair yet cannot afford to pay the amount required of you.

Low Cover – When choosing a policy, you will have the option of basic, intermediate or comprehensive cover. You need to think about the level of cover you truly need. Do you really need a comprehensive cover? Yes, for vehicles, you probably do, but for health policies, you may not. It is also worth noting that young driver insurance without black box can be a bit more expensive, but a lot of people prefer this because they don’t want all of their driving to be tracked. You really need to figure out what is important for you and compare quotes based on this, but don’t pay for unnecessary extras.

A Group Scheme – Group schemes present excellent saving opportunities. Consider joining a group scheme or you could even create a new group policy yourself. All of the members of the group scheme will reduce the amount of money they pay on their insurance and so it should not be too difficult to generate interest.

So there you have it – four key points to take into account if you want to keep your premium costs low. You could also think about switching your insurance provider when the renewal period arises.

The Most Beneficial Children’s Toys

The Most Beneficial Children’s Toys

Children can learn through play without even realising it. As far as they are concerned they are just having fun, but you may be surprised just how much some toys and games can help with their development.

Up To 12 Months

For their first year, bright colours and toys that make noises, such as rattles, will best amuse your child. Toys that promote using their senses and encourage interaction are the best things at this age, Unbreakable mirrors, floor gyms, activity boards and soft colourful stuffed animals are a good start for babies first playthings.

Age 1 to 2

As they get a bit older they like toys where a cause has an effect. Sets where they can hammer pegs or balls through holes are good and stacking toys will help develop their motor skills. Shape sorters and puzzles with just four or five pieces are a great way for them to start solving problems.

Age 2 to 4

At this age, children need toys that are more purposeful. Their motor skills will have improved and they will be stacking blocks and doing simple puzzles by themselves. They will like toys that make sounds, such as a pretend telephone or toys that talk. It is at this age that they first start to play with different things. Usually, it is dolls for girls and trucks for boys. There is nothing wrong with this at 3 years of age, just as it is fine if boys want to play with dolls, or vice versa.

The Most Beneficial Children’s Toys

Age 4 To 5

Their learning ability by the time they reach 4 has grown a great deal. It is a good time to start to introduce toys that really are educational, such as art and crafts supplies, electronic phonic toys, harder puzzles, action figures and a Melody Jane dolls house, as they are brilliant for encouraging imaginative play. Most 4/5 year olds love things such as dressing up, starting to play sports and simple board games.

Age 5 To 7

Now they will start to develop interests of their own. This could be a particular sport, cooking or playing with a favourite toy. A lot of them will become interested in digital devices and the games they can play on those. It's also the age when they start wanting to have friends round to play some of their games with them. Some of the best toys for this age group include strategy games such as chess or draughts, computer and video games, basic science kits, building sets such as Lego, and bikes as they are good for their balance.

Over 7

Your child will continue to develop past 7 years old, but now they will probably know what toys they want. There will always be one they will tell you everyone has except them. You will hear then chat to their friends about the highest score they achieved on their latest computer game, and they will carry on trying to beat that.

Their interests will become more adult-like and they may well take up a hobby. If they are going to be a collector of something, it is not unusual for the collection to be started at this sort of age.

So, you’re the baby shower host.. now what?

How lovely (and, maybe a little bit daunting); you’ve been entrusted with the task of hosting a beautiful baby shower for a beloved mum-to-be. You might be feeling a little overwhelmed if you’ve just started the planning process but don’t worry, it’s time to get the troops on board, then you’ll be able to plan something really lovely together. The following are some tips, ideas, and advice for those who want the baby shower they’re hosting to go seamlessly, and be as enjoyable as possible (without inducing labour in the guest of honour!)

baby shower

Presents And Gifting

Ask and see if the expectant mother wants or needs anything specific for her new baby. Try and put together a gift list to send around to the guests; this will enable each person to tick something off the list, and they’ll be no doubling up on presents. If you are part of a close friendship or family group, you could put your money together to create a hamper full of essentials, or the main gift that perhaps the new parents have been unable to afford. Don’t go buying any designer cots or prams, without asking the mum or dad-to-be what they already have. Personalised items are another way to give the new mama something special that she and her child can appreciate forever; embroidered blankets, or art for the nursery, will make a functional gift, and be a sentimental surprise. Just try to remember that the thought put into it is the most important thing.

Send Out Those Invites

Sort out a time and a venue as soon as possible, and make sure it’s around a month or six weeks before the baby is due to arrive (leaving it too close to the due date is a risky move). The best time for a shower is around lunchtime or early afternoon; this will ensure the guest of honour won’t be too tired, and it’s the perfect time to enjoy any food, drink, and nibbles. If you’re planning a surprise for the future mama, then make sure you state that on your invitations; you don’t want anyone to let the exciting news slip. There are loads of invitation design ideas online, so it’s worth taking a look for a bit of inspiration.

Food, Nibbles, And Treats

The sweet treats at the shower can easily reflect the colour palette and theme of the event; coloured icing, sprinkles and cake toppers are all excellent ways to incorporate your chosen shades. A buffet style offering is a relaxed and informal way to feed the guests and gives everybody the chance to bring a dish to the party. By involving the guests in providing the food, you’ll save yourself precious time and money.

baby shower cakes

Any time and effort that you put into hosting a baby shower will be appreciated by the expectant mother for the years ahead. You'll be helping her to make lasting, lovely memories, and getting everyone excited for the new arrival.

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