How to make money: How to make money without the day job.

“Everyday is a bank account, and time is our currency. No one is rich, no one is poor, we’ve got 24 hours each” Christopher Rice

I’m surprisingly coming towards the end of my first ever month of not having a “day job” and I’m not going to lie – it feels strange. I think earning money seems to provide purpose to life as if it justifies the existence of life itself. Too deep for a Tuesday? possibly, The rant of a hungover woman after too much Christmas cheer? most definitely not….ahem. Moving on swiftly then…

Myself and Mr Fire have become obsessed with one particular google search of late – how to make money online. He travels fifty miles a day to his job and back and its quite frankly taking its toll on him. I have a desperate desire to help but I feel almost hypercritical trying to solve a problem for him that I haven’t figured out for myself yet. So I’ve plucked out some of the most intriguing and more plausible results from many a search and I will be trying them out in a new section simply called : Tried and tested.

Plan

This section will move about more than me trying to keep warm without putting the heating on. I will cross things off as I test them out and add new things as and when I hear about them.

Its much shorter than I thought it would be. The internet is full of results talking about making money, but they all seem to be the same few things duplicated over and over again.

Got anything to add to the list? Please let me know either by commenting below or dropping me an email – hellolittlemissfire@gmail.com  Would be fab to hear about your experiences with these things too.

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How to Save Money: Cutting down on household expenses

“Too many people spend money they earned..to buy things they don’t want..to impress people that they don’t like” –Will Rogers

Do you remember my Income and Expense report from the beginning of this month? I do and in fact I feel like it has burnt a hole in my brain. Its really made me question my outgoing expenses. Surely one of the keys to unlocking FIRE is to reduce outgoing expenses and then put the difference between your income and expenditure to work in investments and savings? (I’m ignoring the fact I currently don’t have an income on purpose today!)

I’ve decided to spend some time each month really focusing hard on how to reduce my living expenses, so that once I have an income then it will then be hard at work for me only paying for the basic’s. I don’t know what my bills will be yet now I’ve moved house so its best to have a back up plan incase my bills increase:

 

Plan

I’ve spent lots of time this month drawing up plans and trying to work out were to take my first steps into my FIRE journey. I’m looking forward to the actual doing next month!

How do you reduce your living expenses?

 

 

 

 

 

 

On a budget: The cheapest way to Move House

“Home is where the heart is… Even if you cant remember what box it is it” – #Happymovetips

I did it! I’ve finally moved house. It feels alittle strange being totally out of my comfort zone and in a new area. I think it will be hardest when dropping the little one off at school and then returning to an empty house.

How did I move house on next to zero money? That is exactly what this post is about. When thinking about moving house, my brain conjures up visions on TV programs with slapstick humor and a massive removal van complete with an army of eager to lift men. The main character simply standing in the perfectly renovated new house, calm and collected pointing to where the furniture should live in its new home. My experience was totally different. For one, all I hired was a van. I sweet talked Mr Fire into driving it and he brought along one of his best friends to help with the heavy lifting.

Geography wise, whilst I’m leaving my rented accommodation and moving out the area, my stuff was actually scattered all around! When I fled I was only presented with a handful of safe opportunities to return to where I lived  and tried to move as much of my things out as possible on each trip. That meant we needed the van for the whole day.

Here are my expenses from the big day:

Cost of moving

  1. Van Hire.
    The cost of hiring an actual removal companies van was substantial with me leaving the area and moving to a 3 bedroom house. I went a different route and I chose a Sunday to move since there would be less traffic than a weekday and just filled a form in online to book a normal van. Flat fee for the whole day.
  2. Movers
    Only cost here was Mr Fire and his friends time. They were rewarded with some home cooked food and a few beers afterwards as a thank you (probably cost me about £5!)
  3. Packing Boxes
    I really resented the idea of having to buy boxes to put my stuff in and then be left with lots of them at the end. I asked around at supermarkets for free boxes and used old reusable plastic bags that friends/family had with the promise of returning them at the end.
  4. Packers
    I actually don’t like the idea of packers coming into my home and packing my things so I was happy to pack it myself. Not working definitely helped this as it took a few hours each week night before the move.
  5. Change of Address cards
    A nice novel idea,but in the age whatsap, text messages and emails. There is no real need for these. Plus I really wanted to control who had my new address.
  6. Time off work
    Lucky for me, this wasn’t an issue! It was for Mr Fire which is another reason to choose a weekend over a weekday

So  there we have it. I’m all moved in and ready to begin the next chapter of my life and actually you know, make some money!

How to Make Money: Blogging

“Wealth is not his that has it, but his that enjoys it” –Benjamin Franklin

Way back in 2010 when I deep within my Couture obsession stage and FIRE was something if you touched, you got burned, I started up a blog to share my passion. I was very young and when I started to make money from it by accident (people would ask me to write about their site and/or put an advert up, then pay me) so I didn’t really appreciate the money. I saw it simply as “excess” money and so it should be spent. You name it, I bought it:

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I could go on but trust me, I REALLY don’t want to! Imagine if i would have invested all that money (sob!) Now i’m in a completely different situation then when I was then and i’m hoping to get the old blog fired up (pun intended) problem is, I took all that extra income for granted with no idea of how I got it or how to replicate it now. So i’m starting from scratch and hoping to build my fashion blog from the ground up. It still has the followers and gets the odd page view so I guess i’m not really starting from ground zero.

I’ll be researching the proverbial out of it the next coming weeks as the blogging world has changed alot!

If anyone has any helpful hints about making money from blogging, i’d love for you to share!

How to Save Money: How to build an Emergency Fund

“You must gain control over your money or the lack of it will forever control you” –Dave Ramsey

I’ve found recently that whilst knowledge may be power, its also pretty darn scary! After literally hours and hours of searching the internet on all things finance, its seems the universe (well Google) is trying to tell me I may already be too late. I should have already been saving 10% of my wages for the last twenty years, I also should have been planning for my retirement (conventional age 65 of course) as soon as I turned 30 so I’m already late to the saving party. After taking a few deep breathes I’ve decided that the best way to start saving is to begin with an Emergency Fund.

Emergency Fund

The Emergency fund is exactly what it sounds like: a pot of money set aside for emergencies such as a boiler breaking, the car not starting and being out off work for a few months.

How much is enough?

This is definitely a one size does not fit all type of question! Its fairly easy to work it out though and there are two ways to do it.

  1. Simply aim for three months wages. You know you can survive on it as you do it every month,
  2. Work out what you spend each month on mortgage/rent, food and heating bills, and other things you cant live with out. Aim to have three months worth.

How much is too much?

The jury is still out on this. My very inexperienced take on it is that you don’t really want to have more than six months worth of emergency cash no matter which method you use for calculating. Quite simply put its a bit of a missed  opportunity, don’t you think? Your missing out on the opportunity to gain a better interest rate.

Where do I put it?

Its up to you really, Cash under the bed or in an instant saving account is still cash that can be accessed quickly, although the former runs the risk of getting spent or lost/stolen. The best bank account is one that gives you quick, easy and penalty free access to your cash. I’ve had an instant saving account since the beginning of time (not literally) and I’m sure it will work just fine.

Whats next?

So once you’ve saved up your magic emergency fund number, whats next? I’m going to be researching Isa’s next so I’ll let you know.

Where are you up to with your emergency fund?

 

 

 

Possibly the worst time to move house?

“Once you’d resolved to go, there was nothing to it at all.” ― Jeannette Walls

The build up to Christmas is here! The shops are crazy busy as the general public goes into a massive panic buy for those emergency items and last minute Christmas presents. Guess what I will be doing next week? Yep as the title suggests, I’m moving house!

Way back in April, I put an offer in on a house. It was accepted and the number of people/houses added to the chain grew and grew. So the day is finally here, possibly at one of the worst times. Luckily I had my job back when I applied for my new house! I’m hoping the bills will be roughly the same as they are where I live now.

Why am I moving? Good question. Eighteen months ago I fled an abusive relationship with my daughter and we were homeless for one month. After that one month, I grabbed the first rented accommodation that came along staying in relatively the same area that I moved to as ordered by my abusive ex. When someone asked me why I stayed in the same area, I rolled off the excuses… Its near her school, My job is close by, I’ve lived here for a while now. Whilst all the reasons were true, they didn’t make sense to me. The real reason I stayed is as I was to afraid to leave and start somewhere new. I’ve only ever lived in two places – This one as I had to move for my ex and my family home when I was a child. I had never stopped to think about where I would like to live, or where is best for my daughter. So I bravely decided to choose to move:

moving house

A lot of pieces need to come together in order for my “new start” to take effect and the house in an new area is the first step.

I’ve actually quiet enjoyed this little post as I think its the first one that hasnt involved finances….yet!

 

How to Make Money: Starting to sell on Ebay

“Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.”–Henry David Thoreau

I first joined Ebay about 5 years ago to buy some designer clothes that I saw on there much cheaper than if I had bought it in a store. Thinking back if I had known about FIRE back then I would have invested the money since I had it spare!

Anyway since the lack of income I thought I would revisit ebay but this time as a seller. Now I have sold a few items before without really having a clue what to do and even sold a product that was broken without checking it worked. Not this time. I have quite a lot of clothes from myself and my daughter that she has grown out of (length ways) and I have grown out of (unfortunately width ways) so I thought its time I reintroduced myself to selling on Ebay with a simple selling guide (I wouldn’t  want it to feel like  Ebay is hard work)

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What is Ebay?

For those of you new to this sort of thing its actually quite simple.

Ebay is an online marketplace which bring buyers and seller together.  Ebay gives you an opportunity to nab yourself a bargain by buying cheaper than retail price in some cases along with providing the opportunity to sell your unwanted/unused items and making a profit. Some people actually make a living this way and if my selling takes off then I’m definitely going to review that!

How it works:

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Listing the item for sale is super easy too as ebay talks you through it!

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Whats the cost?

Now it can appear relatively complicated as there are a few sets of fees involved.

  • Listing Fees – You can list 20 free items a month but keep a look out for Ebay special offers! I’ve heard Ebay regularly offer listings for 100 items free.
  • 10% of the overall sale price (including postage charges) are paid to Ebay as their “fee”
  • Payment Fees – Honestly Paypal is the only way to go with regards for taking payment. You are totally covered then. Of course Paypal will charge you for the privilege of using their service and that is 20p per transaction and 3.4% of the total sale price.
  • Lastly don’t forget your packaging fee. Sure you get your postage back but you have to wrap the thing first. Include this in wither your sale price or your postage fee.

And thats it! I’m off to start selling all my unwanted items and I will check back in a month when I bring you my Monthly Income report. If it works you can bet your money earning bottom I will be sharing an updated guide with you and I may even talk Mr Fire into pulling together a fee calculating spreadsheet so its less of a chore to work out profit.

I’d love to hear your ebay selling stories and tips!

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