Ways to Make Money Without Getting A Second Job

23- Oct2020
Posted By: abundanceaware
147 Views

Ways to Make Money Without Getting A Second Job

You could want to earn extra money for various reasons. It could be to make ends meet, increased responsibility, or a short or long term goal you set for yourself. However, is it really easy adding a second job to an existing full-time job?

To be honest, a lot of people will rather request for a promotion at their present place of work than look for a second job anyway.

I love what I do on daily basis in my job. However, having a second job will add more stress to my life. Why will I want to get a second job? I just can’t spare the time. Having a second job will deny me of valuable time I spend with my family.

We live in the best of times and you don’t have to actually look for an extra job to supplement your earnings. There are now various offline and online methods of boosting your income on the side.

Keep reading as I take you through some fantastic opportunities.

1.     Sell items on Amazon, eBay or Craigslist

Why go through the stress of setting up a garage sale when you can automate the process? By listing items on eBay or Amazon, you will be leveraging the purchasing power of their existing audience.

All you have to do is create an account with them and start listing your items. It can range from home furnishings to clothing and accessories and computer equipment.

Three things that are just as important as the product you’re selling is a detailed product description, contact information and high-quality product images. You can chip in with free shipping to attract more customers.

I have gone through this particular journey myself and you can read up on my experience here. An advantage Amazon has over eBay is the Amazon’s fulfilment centre and Amazon FBA for beginners. You can also read up more about it here.

I have other articles that explain how to make money on amazon in detail, how to build a brand and import to sell.

2.     Dropship or start an online store

Dropshipping and eCommerce stores have gained a lot of popularity over the years and I know why. Imagine not having to invest in inventory while still selling your physical and digital products from the comfort of your home?

The major difference between the dropshipping model and the conventional buying and selling is that you don’t buy anything until a purchase has been made.

This means you can start dropshipping with little or no capital at all. All you need to invest in is a little bit of time to research your products and suppliers.

The model is simple, you simply get a reliable supplier who sells inexpensive goods and you market their products. This can be done through a website, email marketing, social media or however you choose.

3.     Sell Crafts

I like the idea of selling crafts a lot. Handcrafted items like beads and crotchet are things a lot of us do as a hobby already, so why not monetize it?

With the right market, it can be an easy way of making money. This is because of an increase in the demand for unique products; mass-produced products can sometimes be too competitive to market. Think about it, you can dedicate your evenings to making crafts.

However, making crafts is one thing and actually selling is another. Your social media page or contact list can only get you so far. You will have to rely on online options to maximize the potential of your business.

The most popular platform for handcrafted items is Etsy. They specialize in crafts and that gives it an edge over other multipurpose platforms like Amazon. They also have various tools that will help you sell your products as well as promote your brand. You can then leverage the power of your social media pages, contact or email lists to gain more visibility.

The downside of using Etsy is that the company maintains control over your store and can close it at any time. Although this doesn’t happen often. If this is a worry for you, you can choose to set up your own website.

You can also rely on offline marketing and referrals to help boost your sale.

4.     Sell food or baked goods

Can you cook or bake? Do you enjoy doing it? The good thing is that you can actually leverage it to make extra income. And all you have to do is find time to bake or cook.

You may already know this but there are a lot of people out there who would rather buy food than cook. You can create different weekly menus and start marketing.

You can also create partnerships with local stores and businesses to help sell your baked treats. If you’re serious enough about it, you can find contracts with businesses interested in serving foods at their events.

However, an important thing you must do is check for any food laws in your country before embarking on this journey.

5.     Launch an online resource

Another way to conveniently make money on the side is by sharing your expertise. Let’s say you’re good at bookkeeping, for example, you can leverage your expertise.

What you’ll want to do is launch an online ebook or course, start a blog or a vlog.

If you choose to go with this route, you must be ready to put in a lot of work initially. But the good part is that once you get it right, you can earn great passive income.

6.     Join the sharing economy

The sharing economy has been a hit in the past decade and you can leverage this to boost your income. You should be able to make from a few hundred to thousands of dollars a month through this approach.

You can choose to rent out your car on Turo and hail a cab or ride a bike to work instead. Rent out a spare bedroom on Airbnb. If you have quality cameras lying around the house, you can rent it out on Cameralends. You can even rent out things like a sailboat on Sailo and snowboard on Spinlister.

Making money through Airbnb is the most popular of this approach so here is a free tip. You can make an immense profit by renting out your whole house rather than a spare room. It’s best to do this during the holiday season so you can go on a vacation or visit family.

7.     Selling Services Offline

You can plug your free hours with rendering offline services. You can study your environment and look for opportunities that you can take advantage of. But things like gardening, cleaning gutters and lawn mowing are opportunities you can always readily see around.

You can also get creative and teach things like music, martial art, how to bake and more. You can also become a home tutor.

Transport is also another aspect you can focus on. Companies like Uber and Lyft are quite popular but they are not available everywhere. You might want to do your research on the ride-hailing services available in your region.

Bonus: Making extra money through online freelancing

Freelancing is an ever-growing field and the possibilities of growth are still immense. The advantage of freelancing is that you can always work at your own convenience and pace. If you choose to try out the freelance route, you can give the list below a try. The important thing is to find out what you’re good at and try to leverage it.

  • Carry out Surveys
  • Start a hobby blog or guest post
  • Become an affiliate marketing
  • Use freelance platforms like Upwork and Fiverr

Categories:
04- Oct2020
Posted By: abundanceaware
220 Views

Perranporth Beach Cornwall: Is it worth visiting

If you are considering visiting Perranporth Beach in Cornwall, this post will give you some of the information you need to decide if Perranporth Beach is worth visiting or not.

Since I arrived in the UK in 2005, I have been privileged to visit a lot of beaches. My concession in that time is that majority of the beaches are reasonably ok.

Perranporth beach is one of the beaches I can confidently say I really enjoyed visiting. We visited the beach in July when the weather was very warm and it was a sunny day which made our experience very enjoyable.

Perranporth beach

Perranporth beach

The beach is located in Perranporth town which is a seaside resort town on the north coast of Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. The town is around 8 miles south-west of Newquay.

Perran beach faces west onto Perran Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. The very first thing we noticed was the Perranporth beach popularity for surfing.

As we were walking down to the beach, we saw a lot of people dressed in  wet suits carrying surfing boards. We knew straight away that the beach was popular with surfers. I must admit that neither I nor anyone in my household is into surfing.

Perranporth Beach, Family Day-out

If you are a surfer or would like to learn about surfing, Perranporth beach is a place for you to try out.

Perranporth is a popular family holiday destination for a lot of British families. I really love sandy beaches and Perranporth beach is one of the very best of the sandy beaches of Britain. The beach is very wide. Perran Beach extends northeast of Perranporth town for about 3 km (nearly 2 miles) to Ligger Point.

How long is Perranporth beach?

Perranporth beach is about 2 miles long. It extends northeast of the town to Ligger Point.

Things to Do in Perranporth

Of course, the beach is the major spot to explore but surfing isn’t the only attraction in Perranporth. There are lots of things to do in Perranporth and environment.

During our visit, we had a great time at the beach. There are other places near Perranporth were you can have a nice family time. One of such is the Newquay Zoo which is about 9 miles to Perranporth.

Newquay Zoo

We visited Newquay Zoo and it was a good place to visit. Our boys love animals and that influenced our decision to visit the zoo. From Haven Perran Sands Holiday Park where we stayed to Newquay Zoo is about 20 mins.

We’ve been to a lot of establishments in the UK where wild animals are conserved. Newquay is a reasonable sized zoo. However, it is not as big as zoos like Edingugh or Bristol which we’ve visited in the past.

Newquay Zoo has over 1,000 of the world’s rarest and endangered animals. One unique animal which I remember seeing is Capybara.

As one of the leading tourist attractions in Cornwall, it was not a surprise that the zoo was very busy.

They also have a children play area which our younger son really loved. He enjoyed himself a lot.

We had a great family time at the zoo.

Other places to visit to find exciting things to do in Perranporth are

1. Perranporth to St Agnes Clifftop Walk

2. Perranporth Museum

3. St Piran’s Oratory –  site seeing

4. Black Flag Brewery. – food and drink

5. Ticket to Ride Surf School -BOAT TOURS & WATER SPORTS

6. Perranporth Surf School

7. Reen Manor Riding School

8. The Watering Hole

9. Cornish Lavender

Haven Perran Sands Caravan Holiday Park in Perranporth

Our main reason for travelling down to Perranporth in Cornwall was because of Haven Perran Sands Caravan Holiday Park.

It has been an extraordinary second quarter of the year 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic. After the lockdown was eased, we decided to get away from the house to broaden our horizon and get back some much needed life positives.

Explore Haven Perran Sand

Over the years we’ve been familiar with Haven holiday parks so it was an easy decision to go with Haven. And we chose Cornwall because we’ve never been to Cornwall before.

Perran Sands Holiday Park offers a perfect resting place for families.

Deluxe Caravan, Haven Perran Sand

The holiday park has stunning views of the sea. The beach which is exclusive to the holiday park is perfect for surfing if you love surfing.

You can learn to surf at the Surf School located in the park.

There is also an indoor pool and a hub for various sports and leisure activities.

I really enjoyed a stroll to the beach in the evening during the sunset.

We stayed in one of the Delux Caravan and I must say that it was sparkling clean. I have nothing bad to say about the condition of the caravan.

Categories:
12- Aug2020
Posted By: abundanceaware
338 Views

Genuine ways to make money online

There are a lot of genuine ways to make money online if you have the right information.

It can be very overwhelming to get started making money online. Especially if the information you are reading is not broken down into a simple way to understand. It is very easy to get confused by lots of information available on the internet.

Before you start

Before I give you my list of genuine ways to make money online. Let me give you some important things you need to understand before you start any online money-making business.

 

Time

It is very important to know that any way you choose to make money online will take time. This is especially true if you are completely new to online business. Nothing will happen by magic. The time factor is the most important mindset shift required to make any online money-making venture work.

We are now living in a time in history whereby people expect things to happen very quickly. But the reality is that to get any tangible result, it will take time. It won’t happen overnight.

We often underestimate how long a project will take. Impatience now rules our mind and it is a bad thing. There is no such thing as making easy or free money online. A lot of time will need to be devoted.

When you see people that have made money online, if they are honest they will tell you it isn’t easy. They will tell you about the countless hours spent in developing a product or service before they were able to earn any money through their online business.

Education

I am sure you must be wondering why I am talking about education. I am not talking about a university degree. A college degree is not required to start an online business.

However, you need to educate yourself about any online business you choose for you to get any result.

Thanks to the internet, it is very easy to teach yourself a lot of things. There is a wealth of information on the internet about various subjects.

When you identify the type of online business you want to do, look for helpful information online. Then immerse yourself in learning.

As long as you have an internet connection, most of the information online is free.

Alternatively, you can pay for a course someone else put together. The coaching or mentoring option could also help you get results faster. Having a coach or mentor does not guarantee results without hard work, it only makes the journey easier for you.

I must say that you have to be careful not to fall into the hands of dubious people. It is easy to do this in an attempt to buy a course or seek a coach or mentor.

Consistency

If there is one thing that will help you to succeed, it is consistency in efforts.

Anyone who cannot put in consistent work will not make tangible money online. You have to stay engaged and avoid distractions.

If it was easy to make money online, everyone will be doing it. Many people start the journey, fail to be consistent and end up quitting.

Consistency means that you are committed to sustained effort in other to achieve your goal of making money online.

Something that has helped me personally in my online side hustle is scheduling. I use calendar blocking to schedule my work. This helps me know exactly what I need to do each day of the week to help move my business forward.

I consistently wake up early to get work done. Small consistent effort every day can help you to achieve a big result over a period of time.

Genuine online businesses

1. Sell physical products

One of the best ways to earn money online is to sell a physical product. The risk of starting a business selling physical product has been reduced to almost zero because of the internet. You can start making money online by selling physical products.

These are the best platforms where you can sell physical products

I have written a number of articles about how to start selling on Amazon. Check the list of my selling on Amazon articles below.

If you have an idea of a very niche unique product. You can set up your own Shopify eCommerce store where you can sell the products to customers.

The common rule is that your products need to solve specific problems. And it is important that the product is not easily available in usual brick and mortar shops on the high street.

By this, you have more chance of customers coming to buy it online.

One of the other ways to make money online is to start a dropshipping business. The good thing about dropshipping is that you are not going to hold any stock. Its simply selling other peoples products.

2. Sell digital products

Another genuine way to make money online is to sell digital products. There are a variety of digital products you can sell online.

The most obvious digital product is an ebook. There are other digital products that you can sell online.

You can create a template that someone might find useful and will be happy to pay you for it. On marketplaces like Etsy, you can upload a template you have created and make it available for sale.

The screenshot below is from Etsy which shows some budgeting planner template that are available for sale.

You can research on a subject you can create a template for and start making money online when people buy.

 

3. Sell courses

Making money online is not about clicking a few buttons and money starts rolling into your bank account.

If you have knowledge about a topic than the majority of people don’t know. There is a chance that someone will be ready to pay you for what you know.

On websites like Udemy, you can create educational videos on a subject you know a lot about. Is it easy to create a course? No, it is not, it takes hard work and time.

Your courses can also be hosted on websites like Thinkific or Teachable. The amazing thing about courses is that it will be available for people from all over the world which provide limitless opportunity to earn money.

If you can put in the work, you can create a course, make it available online and start earning money genuinely online.

 

4. Freelancing/ Virtual Assistant

The internet provides opportunities for ordinary everyday people who have niche knowledge. They can make themself available for people all over the world.

You can serve people all over the world with your knowledge. Platforms like People Per Hour, Fiverr and UpWork make it easy for you to offer valuable services to entrepreneurs and business people.

As a freelance or virtual assistant, people all over the world can seek your service and you can get paid.

I have paid people for various services like article editing, logo design, website error fixing. The list goes on and on. If you have any special skill, you can genuinely earn money for your skills online.

Final Thought

Making money online requires a lot of grinds and hard work. Anyone ready to learn and put in the work can genuinely earn money online.

I wrote a very detailed article on 101 Side Hustle Ideas. The list contains both online and offline side hustle ideas. If you are only interested in earning money online, just pick from some of the online related side hustles. The link is below

 

 

Categories:
02- Aug2020
Posted By: abundanceaware
1210 Views

Best Vanguard Funds UK

One of the most common questions people have asked me is what are the best Vanguard Funds available in the UK?

It is not a surprise to me that people ask me this question because choosing the right funds when you want to get started with Vanguard can be overwhelming and confusing.

Vanguard is not the best when it comes to the number of funds available to choose from. However, this is an advantage from my own point of view. This is because it is not that complicated to choose a fund on the Vanguard platform in the UK when compared to a lot of other investment platforms in the UK.

I must say at this point that I am not a financial adviser and please do not take this information in this post as financial advice. Please also do your own research after reading this post.

Base on my experience of investing with Vanguard in the UK, below are my top 3 funds. I will also give you the reasons why these are my top 4.

After reading this article, you might find this article useful. 

U.S. Equity Index Fund – Accumulation

This is one of the passive funds Vanguard offers to UK investors. It is very similar to the Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund in the US. The Fund is a passive fund.

Investing in this fund means that I am in full trust of the historical performance of the Standard and Poor’s Total Market Index in the US.

The fund invests in large, mid, small and micro-sized company shares in the US.

Investing in stock and share generally means that you support the advancement and innovations of the US economy. It is a way of owning part of the US economy.

The fee for this fund is really very low and it is one of the reasons why I love this fund.

You can see more information about this fund on the Vanguard UK website.

S&P 500 UCITS ETF (VUSA)

This fund is an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) and is available for UK investors on the Vanguard UK platform.

It is a fund that tracks the S&P 500 which is a US index. The S&P 500 from its name contain 500 of the biggest companies in the US.

Investing in this simply means that I trust these 500 companies to continue to innovate and provide valuable products and services into the market place.

As well, this also means putting your trust in the US economy which is still the best economy in the world as at the time of writing this post.

You can see more information about this fund on the Vanguard UK website.

LifeStrategy® 80% Equity Fund – Accumulation

This fund is usually regarded as a fund of funds because it holds various funds in it. The Vanguard LifeStrategy is one of my most favourites of Vanguard Funds available in the UK.

The portfolio comprises of approximately 80% shares and 20% bonds and other similar fixed-income investments.

The 80% equity means that shares make up 80% of the fund and the rest 20% bond.

The state of life or age of the investor is usually the determinant factor in which of the LifeStrategy funds to choose. Vanguard has other LifeStrategy funds as follows

  • 20% Equity
  • 40% Equity
  • 60% Equity
  • 100% Equity

The percent (%) equity always signifies the percentage of the funds that are shares.

For an investor who is close to retirement or has retired, it might be better off to invest in 20% equity. This will mean that 80% of the fund is bond.

Bonds are more regarded as less risky than shares.

Personally, because of my stage in life, I invested in the LifeStrategy 80% Equity.

You can see more information about this fund on the Vanguard UK website.

YouTube video

FTSE All-World High Dividend Yield UCITS ETF (VHYL)

The main reason why I like this fund is that it is a global fund.

The world generally is moving forward in the right direction of innovation, technology and advancement. Investing in this fund is putting your trust in the future growth of the human race.

According to Vanguard as stated on their website, “this fund invests in large and mid-sized company stocks – real estate trusts not inclusive- in developed and emerging markets that pay dividends generally higher than the average.”

The unique benefit of investing in this stock is the fact that it is a dividend fund. The fund invests in stocks of companies that pay dividends that are usually above the average.

You can see more information about this fund on the Vanguard UK website.

Final Thought

It is very easy to get overwhelmed when choosing funds to invest in on the Vanguard platform when you are a beginner. It is important to keep things simple by choosing passive funds which track the major stock market indices.

My favourite Vanguard Funds mainly track indices that are outside the UK. This does not mean that FTSE funds are not as good as starter funds.

Some of the FTSE funds are also very good funds you can choose from. You can check out FTSE and other funds on the Vanguard website by clicking here.

Categories:
01- Aug2020
Posted By: abundanceaware
355 Views

How to save money on low income in the UK

One of the hardest things to do when your income is low is saving money. Many folks in this bracket don’t even bother with it because it seems nay impossible.

But is saving money on a tight budget really impossible wherever you are in the world, be it the UK, USA, Canada etc?

Savings for me is a choice you can’t compromise on. You have to do it. No matter how small your income is, it is important to be able to squeeze that extra penny to be saved.

There are a lot of advantages to saving money.

The following are tips and strategies that will help you in your money-saving on a low-income journey. It is also a useful guide if your income is high.

Best Tips On How To Save Money on Low Income

1. Write Down Your Budget

The very first step you want to take when embarking on a savings journey is to find out where your money goes monthly. This is particularly important because it allows you to check for the disparity in your expenses.

There is always something that you shouldn’t be wasting too much money on but you find yourself doing it anyway. This is mostly out of habit.

There is no better way to get an overview of your money flows monthly than documenting it. You can choose to document manually with a piece of paper or virtually through apps like Evernote.

You can also make use of this household budget calculator.

You must resist the urge to do mental math for this.

The Money Advice Service and MoneySavingExpert have excellent guides on how best to set up a budget.

2. Set Up a Plan of Action

If you’re setting up a plan of action for budgeting on a low income then I want to believe you know where your money is going.

By this I mean you have documented your expenses for a month and scrutinised where your money is leaking.

Only when you know the unnecessary things you’re spending money on can you know how much you can possibly save.

Once you identify the leak, you can then proceed to have an action plan for saving. You need to create a savings goal for yourself.

And get rid of the notion that you are making too low an income to save.

The truth is that even if you are a high-income earner if you don’t have a healthy saving habit, you’ll still find yourself unable to save. Saving money is a habit that you must nurture.

So even if it’s £10 a week that you can save, start with that. The key to the goal is that you must start from somewhere.

3. Reduce Your Accommodation Costs

Accommodation costs are low-key some of the highest expenses that we spend money on.

What most people find out after finding a way to reduce their accommodation costs is that they have more money saved.

How then can you reduce your accommodation costs?

The easiest way to reduce this is to downsize. You might want to look for a less expensive property to rent. Or consider moving to a less expensive area or town.

Although, you must factor in the nearness to your place of work and commuting costs when making the above move.

What you wouldn’t want to do is spend less on accommodation then spending much more on transport.

One of the ways people save money on accommodation is to rent out a spare room to a lodger. This can save you money because then you’ll be earning on your property.

I was once a beneficiary of this type of arrangement when I got my first job at Worcester City Council. A co-worker rented his spare room to me.

And if you live in an area close to tourist attractions, why not consider renting your spare room as AirBNB?

4. Become A Parkinson’s Law Devotee

If you are a fan of productivity then chances are you’ve heard of Parkinson’s Law before this. Parkinson ’s Law states that the more time given to complete a work, the more time it’ll take to complete it. Work expands with the time given.

This can also be applied to finances. The definition in finances would then be: expenses expand to fill the unnecessary wants that occur as a result of increased income.

You might be wondering how increased income relates to your low income. The truth is that you started earning your low income one day. You were probably jobless or on a lower income before now.

What you should have noticed is how your expenses increased with your income. But should it always be so? No matter the income bracket you belong to, you must always be minding of your spending.

You can read this post about how to save money faster with Parkinson’s Law.

YouTube video

5. Cut your expenses

One of the ways to budget on a low income is by learning how to make do with less. This is quite similar to the Parkinson’s point above.

Speaking from experience I can tell you that increasing your income can be hard but reducing your expenses is easier.

Some of the things you can save money on include utility providers, groceries, mortgage and so on.

An often overlooked expense that people often overlook is eating out. Why not cultivate the habit of preparing your own meals? Even if you’re bad at it, you’ll eventually get better.

Debt can easily pile up when these expenses regularly go unchecked. In fact, you will sometimes incur more debt to cover such debts.

Research from Santander suggested that UK households spend an average of £3,329 per year, on water, council tax, broadband bills, energy and electricity.

While these are essential expenses you can still save money by switching to cheaper alternatives where possible.

You can also find a way to reduce your shopping if you are a shopaholic. You can easily ditch that designer clothing for thrift wears. It’s not a shameful thing to do. You can neglect or postpone that luxurious holiday you’ve been looking forward to.

You can check out this article on how to effectively plan a household budget.

6. Set Financial Goals

Another habit you want to develop in your savings journey is setting realistic financial goals. Only you know how much your income is so you are the one responsible for cutting your coat according to your size.

It isn’t an easy thing to live within one’s means but it is a better option than struggling. The truth is that we can make do with several expenses we see as essential. Cutting these extra costs is a step in the right direction.

You have to be realistic with yourself and be able to challenge yourself. No matter how much you earn, there must still be a little you can save.

If not earning enough is your excuse for having unhealthy spending and savings habit. You can always pick up a side hustle to boost your income.

You can read our comprehensive post about side hustle ideas here and here.

But I must warn you if you can’t learn to save when you have little you still won’t save when you have more. Saving money is a habit and it must be nurtured and developed.

7. Sell Some Household Items

One of the easiest habit to cultivate as an adult is the hoarding habit. We sometimes develop personal attachments to some of our belongings and loathe the idea of losing them. This is even after it is no longer useful to us.

Over the years, what you’ll find out is how much junk you are keeping in your house. Sometimes we keep them based on the sentiment that they’ll be needed one day.

But this is the fifth year and you still haven’t needed them. I say it’s time for a big spring clean. Comb through your house or garage brutally for items of no real use with financial value.

You’ll be surprised by what people are looking for. There is always one person or the other looking for thrift buys.

I should know this; I started my eBay journey by selling a few items of no use in the house. I later went on to cutting deals with manufacturers in my chosen niche.

I have a very comprehensive article on how you can get started selling on Amazon and eBay here and here.

8. Buy Second Hand

The truth is that there are so many other people on this same journey as you. What this means is that you can also buy what others are selling.

For the time being, you can say NO to new items and a big YES to used items. You can decide to go for second-hand items like home appliances, clothes, furniture and even mobile devices.

You discover amazing bargains on websites like eBay, Gumtree and even Facebook marketplace.

Buying second-hand items is a sure way of getting the things you need at a lesser price and without really compromising on quality.

9. Figure Out Your Entitlements

One of the things people often overlook is what they are entitled to. We become so engrossed with making ends meet that we forget that we are legally entitled to some benefits.

A way of discovering the benefits that I’m owed is using the entitled to benefits calculator. You can easily find out if there are working, tax credits benefits and so on available to you.

You will be obliged to provide some personal details and information about the people you live with if any. But it is a sure way of discovering an additional form of income.

You can also find out if your children are entitled to free school meals.

I like to call these benefits financial support.

There are several ways to save more money on a low income and the majority of them fall under ‘cutting expenses’. Because let’s be honest you can’t save when you’re always spending without control.

Categories:
16- Jul2020
Posted By: abundanceaware
1087 Views

Why is the Cotswolds so expensive?

The Cotswolds is one of the most beautiful areas in the UK. However, Cotswolds is an expensive area to live in.

The Cotswold boasts of some of the most recognized traditional English villages. There is no doubt that house prices play a major role in determining how expensive it can be to live in an area.

The house prices in the Cotswold area has always been above the UK national average. It doesn’t matter the year you check the figures, the average house price in the Cotswolds is usually double of the UK average house price.

 

Cotswold, England

Planning restrictions to build new homes

I worked in the planning department of three different Local Government Authorities for over 12 years.

Working in the Local Government Authority helped my understanding of the UK planning system.

The planning law restricts the planning of new houses being built in rural areas. Usually planning permission applications will be rejected for building new houses outside the existing boundary of towns and villages.

The Cotswolds is home to quintessential British villages. These villages have a lot of astonishing history. They are small villages and haven’t seen new houses built for a very long time.

The Town and Country Planning Act 1947 which came into effect in July 1948 gave the power to local government authorities to approve planning proposals.

The Town and Country Planning Act 1947 set the foundation of the modern town and country planning in the United Kingdom.

If we follow the age-old law of supply and demand. It is not a surprise that house prices in the Cotswold area are higher than the UK average. 

The restriction to build new homes in rural areas means there is a shortage of homes. When there is a shortage of anything, the little available will be expensive.

 

Idyllic rural aerial view, Cotswolds

Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)

The Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is one of the unique features of the Cotswold Area.

AONB are protected because of their exceptional landscape, distinctive character and natural beauty.

They are specifically safeguarded in the national interest. The Cotswold AONB is one of the 46 Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in England, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

Because of the large areas covered by Cotswold AONB.  This means there is not enough land available outside the AONB in the Cotswold area to build new houses.

 

Burford, Cotswold

Affluence and celebrities

The Cotswolds area is home to a lot of British celebrities.

Celebrities don’t buy houses just anywhere. They tend to buy a house in an affluent area where their privacy can be protected.

If celebrities have a home in an area. There is no doubt the house prices in that area will skyrocket.

One of the popular celebrities who has a home in the Cotswolds is Jeremy Clarkson. He has a house in Chipping Norton.

Jeremy Clarkson co-hosted the hit BBC series Top Gear from 1988 through 2015. Top Gear is one of BBC’s biggest shows which attracts 350 million viewers worldwide. He is also known for the Amazon Prime Show ‘The Grand Tour‘.

Not only celebrities have homes in the Cotswolds. Some royal family members also have houses in the Cotswolds.

Zara Phillips is one of the Royals, she and her Rugby player husband Mike Tindall live in the Cotswolds. Princess Anne also has a property in the Cotswolds.

 

READ MORE

Easy commute to London

The Cotswold area is part of the Southwest and within a commutable distance to London.

There are a lot of people from the Cotswolds who work in London. They commute to work from the Cotswolds area.

Part of Oxfordshire County is within the Cotswolds area, Oxford is popular among places where people commute to London.

Cotswold villages in the northern part of the area are within a commutable distance to London. Those are the villages within the Oxfordshire part of the Cotswolds. You can easily join the train to London and within a few hours, you will be in London.

People who are not able to afford the astronomical price of houses in London can live within commutable distance in the Cotswolds.

Even this small budget which cannot get you a house in London but can in the Cotswolds is still a lot of money for a standard house outside of London.

People who commute from the Cotswold to London not only do it because of London house prices.

There are some groups of people who just do not like the busyness, traffic and the crowd of London. These group of people like the countryside or semi-rural area like what the Cotswold offers.

Because of the popularity of the Cotswold and being a choice place for highly skilled professionals and business people who commute to London. This factor drives the house prices in the Cotswold up.

 

Bourton-on-the-Water, Cotswold

Beautiful area

The beauty of the Cotswolds area is very easy to see if you have been to the area. the landscape in some of the Cotswold villages is breathtaking.

The neatness and organized countryside have different feels compared to a lot of areas I have been to.

You can see the historic environment which has strong links with the Romans.

A beautiful area like the Cotswold is almost guaranteed to be expensive to live in.

I am not sure if anyone will deny that Cotswold villages are some of the most beautiful in Britain. The honey-colored cottages, cozy pubs, tiny tearooms, and narrow streets are part of the features which make the Cotswold unique.

A lot of the Cotswold villages have narrow lanes that lead to the market square. The lanes were built to allow the easy shepherding of sheep. These lanes are an important part of the history of the Cotswolds area.

Most of these villages are known for their picturesque and quintessential nature.

Categories:
05- Jul2020
Posted By: abundanceaware
430 Views

How to import from China and sell on Amazon

Importing from any country including China can be overwhelming. But actually, importing from China and sell on Amazon isn’t as difficult as you might think.

I have been importing from China and selling on Amazon for over 3 years as at the time of writing this article.

In this article, I am going to take you through my step by step process of importing from China and selling on Amazon.

Step 1: Find a product

This is the most important step for an obvious reason. Without a product you intend to sell, there is no point thinking about importation.

One of the most challenging parts of selling on Amazon is finding a product.

Your success on Amazon depends on finding a product that people want to buy. There is no point importing a product that people are not interested in.

To succeed on Amazon, you must do a proper market analysis and come up with a unique product that you will bring to the market place.

I wrote an article about how to find a product to sell on Amazon, perhaps you might be interested in reading it after this one.

Read More

Step 2: List the product for sale on Amazon

Listing a product is important for many reasons.

It will give you the assurance that you are allowed to sell the product on Amazon.

If you are new to selling on Amazon. They don’t trust you yet so they will not allow you to sell in all the categories. For example, if you are a new seller, you might not be allowed to list a product in the health and personal care category.

I know a lot of people who think they can just list any product for sale on Amazon. Before you go and contact a supplier, make sure you check that you will be able to sell the product.

Step 3: Validate your product idea

After listing the product for sale on Amazon, the next stage is to validate your idea.

There is nothing new under the sun. The chances are that the product you want to sell already exist on the shelf in a shop somewhere.

Obviously, you want to make yours different and unique. You don’t want to go and copy the exact product someone already have for sale on Amazon. However, you can use an existing similar product from retailers to validate your idea.

Part of my process of bringing a new product to Amazon marketplace is to test the product on Amazon.

I usually check on Amazon if customers are interested in buying the product.

I would buy between 5 to 10 units of the product from a retailer in a high street or online shop. List it for sale on Amazon. I would send the product to Amazon fulfilment centre.

I will then run an advert on Amazon. The advert will help to put the product in front of customers. After a few days, I would check how the advert is performing.

There is a chance that some of the product will be sold through the advert.

The advert report will show me, how many people on a daily basis were searching for that product on Amazon.

The report will also show me the exact keywords customers typed for searching for the product.

This stage is crucial and very important in making the decision to go further to find a supplier that will supply the product.

Stage 4: Find a supplier

This stage is very important in your process of importing from China.

There are various platforms you can use to investigate and choose a supplier to manufacture your product in China.

The platform that is by far better than all the rest is Alibaba. I have personally used Alibaba to find supplier since I began importing from China in 2017.

Some of the things that are very important to check when choosing suppliers on Alibaba are

1. Gold Supplier

This is also very important.

Suppliers with Gold supplier symbol are the ones Alibaba have verified and earned their trust.

In some cases, the supplier with Gold status has been doing business for a good number of years and have good integrity.

2. Alibaba Trade Assurance

Make sure a supplier you choose has Alibaba Trade Assurance.

The is like insurance against supplier not keeping to their promise.

If you pay a supplier and they fail to deliver the goods. You can report them to Alibaba and they will pay you the money back.

Make sure all your transactions go through the trade assurance especially when you are just starting off.

Stage 5: Sample for Quality Check

After finding a reputable supplier. You can now place an order for a sample.

Seeing photos on Alibaba is not good enough.

You need to ask them to send you a sample. In most case, they don’t charge for the sample. However, you will need to pay for the shipping cost.

The sample is an opportunity to check that the factory will be able to meet the standard of the quality you want.

You want a product that is of high quality so you will not be getting a complaint from customers.

If there are any changes you will like to make to the product, you can communicate with the supplier after you have seen and assess the sample.

Stage 6: Find a Freight Forwarder (Sea or Air)

Before you make payment for the initial deposit. It is important to ask questions about shipping. At this stage, you need to understand the shipping terms.

There are three major terms namely FOB, EXW and CIF.

The first two are the most common

FOB (Free on Board)

The supplier will be responsible for getting your goods to the seaport.

Your supplier will be responsible for transportation of the goods to the port of shipment and the cost of loading.

It worth mentioned that the FOB quote usually will be more than EXW quotes where you will be responsible for the local transportation cost to the port of shipment.

EXW (EX Work)

In this case, you will be the one responsible for the cost of transporting your goods from the supplier factory to the port of shipment. It’s basically opposite of FOB.

I usually prefer FOB term for my shipment.

Importing your goods from China to the UK through sea freight is far cheaper than air freight.

I remember vividly my first import from China was via air freight through a courier. It was very expensive and that leads me to ask my supplier the cheapest way to ship to the UK from China.

My supplier suggested to me to look for a freight forwarder who can help ship my products to the UK by sea.

While preparing for my next shipment, I found a company called Shippo through google search.

Shippo has been very helpful for my business since I found them. They simplify my shipping process and make it cheaper.

The three factors that determine the cost of your shipping are

  • size
  • volume (in cubic meters (CBM)
  • and weight (KG), of your shipment.

Obviously shipping by air from China through courier like UPS, DHL and FedEx can be quicker. However, you will be saving a lot of money by shipping through sea freight specialist like Shippo.

For people who are just new to selling on Amazon and their product is lightweight. You might consider air freight.

If you want to use the traditional courier, in most cases your supplier will help deal with them in China to get a quote for you.

For sea freight, it is better to find freight forwarder in the UK.

Sea shipping is not right for every product. The general rule of thumb is that if your goods are too small or you need it urgently, the sea shipping will not be right, so consider air freight.

Door to Door Delivery

I must not forget to mention this one.

Door to Door Delivery means that your supplier will help you appoint a freight forwarding company.

Every task involved with shipping will be handled by the appointed freight forwarder.

With Door to Door Delivery, you won’t need to worry about taking the product from warehouse or factory to port or airport.

As well, your supplier in conjunction with the freight forwarder or the courier will take care of all the paperwork and taxes. 

The product will arrive at your door or your chosen location.

Stage 7: Bulk Order

After you have received the sample, satisfy with the quality and agreed on price and shipping term. You can now proceed to place a bulk order.

Obviously you need to ask for a formal quote in writing. This will usually be sent to you via email.

Don’t be scared to haggle. Quality is very important to you so don’t ask for too much discount which will make the supplier compromise on the quality of the sample you’ve seen.

You can get a few cent or pence off the price they quoted you and that can save you a bit of money.

You will usually be required to make payment for the initial deposit which in most cases is 30% of the total cost.

For example, if your product will cost £2,000, you will be required to make a payment of £600 as an initial deposit.

Stage 8: Inspection

There are companies in China that you can appoint to help inspect your products before leaving the factory.

There have been stories of supplier compromising on quality. That is the reason why there are inspection companies in China.

They that can help check that your goods have been produced to the standard you agreed with the supplier.

Personally, I haven’t used any of the inspection companies so am unable to recommend one.

My suppliers have never disappointed me in terms of the quality of the products. For this reason, I have not had any need to use inspection companies for quality check.

Perhaps, it is better to be safe than sorry. If you have a large order, you might consider inspection company service.

Stage 9: Import your goods

Once you have placed bulk order and chosen a freight forwarder or courier. The sea freight forwarder or a courier will deal with your supplier to handle the process of importing your goods.

They will be responsible for importing your goods to the UK.

In my case, I use Shippo for my sea freight and they are efficient and effective.

The freight forwarder will give you the estimated date they expect your goods to arrive in the UK. Sometime the date might change. In that case, they will communicate with you.

Shippo which I use does have tracking on their website that I can use to track the shipment.

Stage 10: Goods Arrival, Custom Duty and Value Added Tax (VAT)

When the goods arrive in the UK, you will get notified by the forwarder.

You then are asked to make payment for the cost of shipping, customs duty, and VAT. All of these will be in one single invoice. The freight forwarder is collecting the Duty and VAT on behalf of HMRC from you.

Because you are importing from China which is outside the EU area, you will need to pay VAT on your goods.

It makes a lot of sense to calculate the Duty and VAT before your goods arrive so you can be well prepared.

Duty is basically calculated using a percentage of your product tariff code. The tariff code depends on the type of product.

Tariff codes are mostly between 2% and 5%, it could be higher but you can check the tariff classification on the UK Government website.

As at the time of writing this post, VAT is standard 20%.

VAT on Taxable Import = 20% of (goods cost) + (UK Duty) + (Insurance & Shipping).

For example, if the cost of your goods is £3,000 with 3% on the tariff code and the shipping cost is £300.

Your duty will be 3% of £3,000 which should be £90.

VAT will be 20% of £3,000 (Cost to buy your goods) + £90 (UK Duty) + £300 (Shipping Cost & Insurance).

Your VAT should be £678.

Your Duty + VAT will be around £779

If your business is VAT registered, you will be able to reclaim the VAT back from HMRC.

For most people who are just starting Amazon business, you won’t be able to collect the VAT back. However, you will not be paying VAT to HMRC on each item sold like a business that is VAT registered.

Usually, HMRC will send you a C79 certificate to prove you’ve paid import VAT which you can claim back.

My freight forwarder Shippo has a calculator on their website which you can use.

Stage 11: Send to a fulfilment warehouse

If your aim of importing from China to the UK is to sell on Amazon. You can ask your freight forwarder or courier to send the goods to Amazon fulfilment centre as soon as the goods are cleared from custom.

Usually, you would have created carton and pallet labels from Amazon Seller Account which should be stick on the cartons and pallets if your goods come in pallets.

If you want to merchant fulfil your products, you can ask for the goods to be sent to your chosen address.

I created a YouTube video on how to import from China and sell on Amazon.

You can watch the video below.

YouTube video
Categories: