Unsure What To Sell On Ebay? Try These Items

by Adam on October 26, 2016

sell buy smallIf you’re looking to make money online, selling items on eBay is often considered one of the most effective methods, at least for beginners.

It’s easy to use, and you can start selling within a matter of minutes. But due to its popularity and convenience, more sellers are using eBay than ever before. This enhanced competition can make it difficult to stand out and entice potential buyers. But if you know which items are in demand, you can increase your chances of a quick and easy sale. So to find out which items eBay buyers are willing to pay handsomely for, read through this list of items.

Branded Electronic devices

Ebay has become a popular place for online shoppers to find branded electronic products. From smartphones to tablets, if they are made by Apple or Samsung, they are likely to get a higher price. Especially if they are one of the latest models. So if you have the latest iPhone at home and you don’t use it, selling it could be a worthwhile option.

Find out how much it is to send electronic devices via post and decide whether you want to offer international postage too. By offering this service, you can entice even more people to buy from you. If you are planning on selling larger devices such as TVs, see www.shiply.com and other couriers for quotes on transport too.

Designer Handbags

If you or your partner have any unused designed handbags lying around, you could be sitting on gold mine. Ebay buyers want these items to give as gifts or to add to their handbag collection. They will also pay top prices if they are from popular brands such as Michael Kors, Vivienne Westwood, and Prada. If you don’t own designer handbags, why not invest in some to take advantage of the Christmas shopping rush.

It is important to remember that while your item might be real, others won’t be. Ebay is filled with sellers offering fake designer handbags at low prices. So make sure potential buyers know that your handbag is legitimate. Take photos of the label and the receipt if possible to show where it was originally bought from.


Believe it or not, Lego is one of the biggest selling items on Ebay. This classic toy is sought after by collectors and parents alike, making it a smart product to sell. While you can sell packs of Lego bricks and the figurines, large and complete Lego sets is where the money is. Due to the new wave of films, Lego Star Wars sets are more in demand than ever before. So if you have a Millenium Falcon set in your parent’s attic, it might be time to let go. For further tips on selling Lego on Ebay, visit www.youtube.com for insightful video guides.

These items are some of the most searched for products on eBay. This highlights that they are highly sought after by online consumers and are more likely to get a fast sale. So if you have these items at home and no longer use them, they could help you generate some seriously quick cash.


life insuranceDebt is something everyone should aim to avoid. If you’ve ever been in debt, then you know it can be a very stressful and painful situation. There are few things worse than having multiple people urging you to pay them the money you owe.

In an ideal world, you will be so on top of your finances that you avoid falling into debt. In this piece. I’ve listed three common causes of debt. Read about them, and it should help you figure out how to avoid them.

Check out all this information, down below:

Spending Too Much Cash

As we go through life, we start racking up various bills and things we must pay for. You rent a property and need to pay rent each month. When you own a house, you have utility bills, etc. Then, there are things like mobile phone and broadband contracts. Each month, you need money in your account to pay for all of these things.

It seems like a fairly easy thing to manage, even if you don’t have a very well-paid job. The problems occur when you start spending too much cash. If you go out and spend your money on non-essentials, then you can end up in a pickle. You spend too much and don’t have enough left to pay all your bills. What happens? You can get hit with fines, or trigger interest rates, etc. In the end, your bills start costing you more than they should. Then, what happens when you miss your payments the next month too? Slowly but surely, you start owing people money. Consequently, you fall into serious debt. Avoid this, create a budget to work out how much you can afford to spend every month. In doing so, you ensure there’s always enough left over to cover your bill payments.

Borrowing Too Much Money

There are many times in life when you have to borrow some money. Maybe you’re in need of instant funds, or you want a long-term loan? Generally speaking, loans aren’t a financial issue. They’re in place to help us out and provide money when we need it. As long as you pay everything back in time, there will be no issues. You’ll be free of debt and in a better position thanks to the loan.

Issues with loans come when someone borrows too much money. The more you borrow, the more you have to pay off, simple, right? The trouble is, people have a tendency to bite off more than they can chew. Especially when applying for short-term loans. A short-term loan is designed to give people cash that they need to pay back quickly. Usually, it has to be within a month. Now, the payday loan industry does have caps on how much can be applied for. However, people still go for the highest amount and struggle to pay it back. They’re hit with high-interest rates, and end up in lots of debt. All of this can be avoided if you quit borrowing too much money.

Not Having A Secure Job

When you think about it, life is very expensive. There are so many essential things we have to pay for. Even when living alone, it can be very costly trying to live your life. But, factor in a partner and some kids, and life gets even more expensive. For some, it’s not a problem. They have a good job and can afford all the essentials and more. For others, it’s a big problem. They don’t have very secure jobs, and their income fluctuates.

Not having a secure job can be a major cause of debt. Why? Because you’re living in a state of financial insecurity. Each month your income can be different, and you may be unable to pay for certain things. Likewise, an insecure job means you could be let go at any time. When this happens, your income stops completely. You can’t afford to pay for things and end up in a lot of debt. The solution to this is easier said than done. Of course, going out and getting a secure job will help you. However, they’re not easy to come by. Jobs can be difficult to find, as there is so much competition out there. Sometimes, you end up in the horrible cycle of moving from one insecure, poorly paid job to the next. I suggest you keep looking for work even when you have an insecure job. Keep plugging away and try to find a secure job that’s well-paid.

These three things cause many people to end up in debt. Avoid them, and you’ll be one step closer to a debt-free life.


The Great Wall of Trump – An Invoice

by Adam on October 26, 2016

wallWe’ve all heard of Donald Trump’s pledge to “build a wall” separating America and Mexico. At first laughed off by some critics, it quickly became apparent that the idea actually had a good volume of supporters. So, if Donald Trump was to win the presidential election in November, and his plan to build the wall came to fruition, how much would it actually cost to construct? In this post, we aim to find out.

How Big Would the Wall Need to Be?

Nobody can ever say that Donald Trump lacks ambition. Although he may have renegaded on some of his more controversial policies, he has always stuck by his idea to build a wall to prevent immigration from Mexico to America. However, building a wall that stretches for over 3,200km is easier said than done – that’s almost 1,989 miles!

The actual wall itself wouldn’t quite need to be that long thanks to the presence of natural borders that are impassable anyway, effectively acting as a wall. The Rio Grande is a good example of this. So, for the sake of argument, let’s lower the length of the wall to 1,000 miles. In order to act as an effective barrier, the 1,000-mile wall would have to be around 40 feet high, otherwise it would be easy to scale it, making it ineffective.

How Much Would That Cost?

So, what would 1,000 miles of concrete built to 40 feet in height cost? Well, Bernstein Research suggest that the cost of the materials would be just short of US$1 billion. This includes $711m in concrete and $240m of cement.

Of course, this isn’t the entire cost, as this excludes labour. When labour is included, Bernstein suggests that the overall costs could come in at anywhere between $15 billion and $25 billion, which is significantly higher than Mr Trump’s own estimates of $10 billion, which he is adamant that Mexico will pay for; something which they strongly deny. Although it is possible to get finance for unique ideas, this may be one step too far without a willing payer. Equally whoever it is that’s lucky enough to secure the contract to take on this behemoth task should probably be prepared to  look into invoice finance as Trump has some what of a track record for failed projects, leaving investors and contractors high and dry.

Why is the Cost So High?

The cost includes labour and materials but also other associated costs, such as the provision of the quarries, concrete plants and cement plans required to construct the wall itself. Concrete cannot be carried great distances, so new plants and quarries may have to be built to make the construction feasible.

Somewhat ironically, Mexico already has some of these quarries in place, so it may be these companies themselves that have the greatest benefit from the wall’s construction.


buying investments onlineWe live in a time where everyone is looking to save money here and there. For most things, that this fine. If you can save a little off your groceries or fuel bill, then why not? But some things still are worth paying for. There are plenty of things that need to be seen as investments, as you will reap the rewards for a long time. How do you know when to spend or splurge, though? Here are some ideas of the things that are worth investing in.

Your Education

With the cost of University fees higher than they have ever been, more people are choosing not to go. For many of us, it is still a completely worthwhile investment. You will have better career prospects if you are a university graduate. You will also learn plenty about life and life experiences that you wouldn’t learn otherwise. Even if you are in a career and thinking about changing it, there are still ways to invest in your learning. You could do a part-time cooking or photography course, for example. Even if they are just things that you do as a hobby, it provides a way for you to make money, should you need it. If you keep investing in your education, it will pay off.

A Good Quality Mattress

As anyone that has had a bad night’s sleep on a dodgy mattress will tell you, a good mattress is a good investment. The better your mattress is, the better your sleep will be. It can also play a part in the health of your back and posture. Mattresses should be replaced every eight or nine years ideally. But if you get a poor quality one, then the chances of you needing to buy one sooner is much higher. With mattresses, quite often if you buy cheap, you buy twice.

Vacuum Cleaner

Have you ever tried cleaning the house and using a vacuum cleaner, that doesn’t actually do anything? There is nothing worse that trying to make things cleaner but they end up looking worse. A good quality vacuum cleaner, with good suction, is a must for any household.


The tyres that your car has are basically shoes for your car. The better the tyres are, the better the car will drive. It will feel smoother and run better. If they are good quality, they will last longer too. With the winter weather coming up, you want to be prepared. Tyres with a good solid tread will be much safer for you when it gets icy. So tyres are another thing that you shouldn’t scrimp on.

A Newer Car

Though an older car will be cheaper, it could cost you more than you expect. Most cars do lose their value quite quickly, so there isn’t any need to get a brand new car necessarily, but a car that is two or three years old is possibly worth getting. It could still be under warranty and have few miles on it. You might not even need to spend on an MOT for a few years either. So they will benefit you for longer.


Any other ideas? Leave them in the comments.


Every birthday and Christmas of my childhood I would get a gift card from a family friend.

So would my brother and sister.

A generous gift, certainly, but the gift card could only be used in a particular stationary shop.

There’s only so many pieces of stationary a family can handle so although the gift cards were a generous present, they were not as useful and well-received as other presents.

If only we had Zeek!

Zeek is an interesting new company and website that allows you to buy and sell unwanted giftcards from a multitude of retailers, both online and offline. For sellers you can convert unwanted giftcards for cash, and for buyers you can get giftcards at a discount to their face value.

When I first went to the site, I was impressed with the variety of brands covered.

zeek selection


There are lots of high-street names so as a buyer you are bound to find a brand you purchase from on a regular basis.

Once you have narrowed down the brands you are interested in you can see what deals are available on the giftcards sellers have put on the site.

I thought I would start with a brand I was very familiar with and look at what savings I could get.


A 9% discount on cinema credit? Not bad at all!

Buying vouchers at discounted rates

The discounts are set by the sellers so they differ across giftcards and brands. The discounts are at least 1% but can be much higher. The highest I’ve seen on the site is 25% for Eurostar where a £120 voucher was selling for £90!

The discounts are higher on more niche brands and lower on bigger household names. For example, a cycle shop brand had discounts above 10% but Tesco and Amazon only had 1% discounts.

After some deliberation I went with Amazon vouchers. The discount was lower than other brands but the flexibility and immediacy made it my top choice. The deals available change from day to day and at the time I was searching only £100 vouchers were available. This was OK for me, especially with Christmas coming up but it could have been a barrier for some.

The site is dependent on sellers adding inventory to the site so you might not get exactly what you are looking for. For example as I was writing this review I went to check the site again and saw there were no Amazon.co.uk vouchers available. That said, there’s plenty of selection if you are flexible and I’m confident you could find a brand and voucher available that could save you a few pounds at least.

When looking at the gift-cards take care to note the ‘valid-to’ information. Vue gift cards are valid for 12 months from the date of original purchase for example. Amazon’s  voucher was appealing because it doesn’t expire for 10 years!  I also liked it was an electronic giftcard so I didn’t have to wait to receive a physical card in the post, although I have friends who have bought physical gift cards from Zeek and they told me they received the giftcards very quickly.


I liked that both card payments and Paypal could be used for payments, but was disappointed I couldn’t buy using my Paypal balance – instead the system routed me through to Paypal’s card processing page, but this is a minor niggle.

Overall the purchase was really easy to make and I got my Amazon code straight away.

Once I had the Amazon giftcode I could log into Amazon to get it credited in my account by typing in the code from Zeek.


As a buyer of giftcards I was impressed with the site and will likely use Zeek again, particularly if I was making a planned purchase. On the seller side I can imagine this site being really helpful after Christmas if I were to receive giftcards from brands I’m not that fussed about – using the site could turn an unwanted voucher into cash that can be better deployed somewhere else – paying off debt, saving it for another time, or buying something more appealing in cash.

Get £5 Zeek Free Credit

Zeek gave me some credit to review the site for Magical Penny readers, but you can get some credit too for your first purchase.

Simply use the code: 2SS35NWI for £5 free credit to use on the site. So that’s a double discount on vouchers as you are  buying a voucher for below market value plus getting £5 credit straight away -definitely helpful in the run up to Christmas and beyond.




money making ideasRecent news has shown people receiving one euro for their pound at airport exchanges. Although this is undoubtedly disastrous news for the pound, some believe that this is only the start of the trend, and news could yet get worse. In fact, some investors have gone one step further, suggesting that the pound could reach parity with the dollar by the close of 2016.

Pound Could Reach Parity by December

Should the pound and the dollar reach parity then it will create history, as it will be the first time that the two currencies have ever been valued at the same level.

Currently the pound is hovering between the $1.20 and $1.30 barrier, but rumours of the UK government perusing a ‘hard Brexit’ have caused the pound to lose against the dollar. With the UK’s demands for Brexit unknown, the time that they will leave the EU unclear and calls for triggering Article 50 now ignored, many investors are abandoning the pound because of the current uncertainty and turmoil.

Uncertainty Over Article 50

Once invoked, Article 50 will allow the UK a maximum of two years to work out the details of an exit. However, many experts predict that it will take far longer than this, and that a complex political power vacuum could be created.

The UK’s Prime Minister, Theresa May, has moved to quash these rumours though, stating that “Brexit means Brexit” and that Article 50 will be invoked early next year. But, the markets did not react to this news with the calmness that she would have expected. This is because, unless the path for Brexit is clear, the pound will continue to weaken. Some strategists have gone as far to state that the pound will continue to weaken significantly in the coming months and right the way up to the end of the year.

Foreshadowing the Future

Due to this uncertainty, the pound looks set to fall below the $1.20 level in the near future. Historically, there has always been technical support to stop the pound falling. However, this support seems to have eroded in response to the Brexit announcement, and the currency has hit all-time lows against the dollar and the euro.

The path to parity, however, is not unstoppable, and it would still require a drastic fall. As such, forex traders should watch their platforms closely for price movements. The pound looks likely to be volatile in the coming months; especially when data is released, so opportunities to make money are clear.


brexitBrexit hit the financial markets hard, with the pound slumping to its lowest level since the 1980s. Much of the shock in the markets came from the unexpected nature of the results, as Brexit was never ‘priced in’ to the markets. However, as always with big market movements, some people correctly predicted the trend and made huge sums of money. In this post, we focus in on one person in particular: Crispin Odey.

The Story of Crispin Odey

Crispin Odey is a hedge fund boss living and working in London, and he is one of a handful of people who made a huge sum of money from Brexit. A supporter of the ‘Out’ campaign, Crispin took a number of short positions on both company stocks and in the fx market, believing that the UK would vote to leave the EU, believing that their value would fall in the aftermath of the vote. When the result was announced, Crispin made just over £220m for himself and his investors, declaring “I think I may be the winner”. Few would argue with that analysis.

How Did he Do it?

In the run up to the vote, Mr Odey invested heavily in gold, which is known as a safe haven asset that holds its value in troubled times. He also bet large sums in the pound falling against the dollar.

The premise of his bet was that, when Britain voted to leave the EU, investors would flock to buy gold, sending the price soaring to a much higher level than he bought it at. Likewise, with stock, people would flee the market, causing prices to crash. Of course, in taking this position, he took a huge gamble. He himself admits that, had the UK voted to remain, he would have lost huge sums of money.

He mainly bet against housebuilder Berkeley Group, assuming that house building activity would fall in the aftermath of Brexit. He was proved correct, too, as the value of the group fell by more than a fifth the day after Brexit.

Overall, he hedged funds around £1.5 billion in the markets just before the Brexit vote and estimates that they gained 15 per cent in value – a total of £220 million.

All of his information came via a private poll that he commissioned in order to steal an advance on the financial markets. Not bad for a few hours of work, eh?


My fiance is a teacher and is looking forward to half term, perhaps even more than the children she teaches!

travellerFor her it’s a chance to catch up on lesson planning but for families with children, half term is often a whirlwind of activity, and costs can really add up.

Travelling by train can be a great way to visit places in half term, but train fares can be a budget-buster.

I used to use my 16-25 rail card all the time for a third off the ticket price but alas I’m too old for it now!

Thankfully there there lots of different railcards available which save a third off most adult rail fares and 60% off kids’ fare including:

  • 16-25
  • Family & Friends
  • Two Together
  • Senior
  • Disabled Persons Railcards
  • Network Railcard

More details here

With slashed price train tickets available you can make room in your budget for more fun. Here are some ideas!


Want to relax and enjoy the crackling of red and gold leaves rustling beneath your feet? The UK has a wealth of forests and woodlands. Just an hour and a half from London the New Forest is a fantastic family friendly option that won’t break the bank.


Off-Peak Return tickets from London (Waterloo) to Ashurst New Forest, for a family of four with a Family & Friends Railcard – £72.30

Usually: £105.40

Total Saving: £33.10


From the best of Disney to Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Phantom of the Opera, the West End offers something for everyone. It’s a step up from your local theatre, offering faultless timing in dance moves and incredible voices – a perfect way to spend a chilly autumn evening. You can even get up to 60% off theatre tickets with your Railcard.

Travel: Off-Peak Return from Birmingham – London (Euston) for a family of four with a Family & Friends Railcard – £88.70

Usually: £156.60

Saving: £67.90

Hit the slopes

Start the ski season early by heading to one of the UK’s indoor slopes. From family ski sessions to sledging and snowboarding there’s loads on offer for families of all ages. Based in Hemel Hempstead, The Snow Centre is Britain’s newest indoor ski centre and caters for kids as young as four.

Travel: Off-Peak Return tickets from London (Euston) – Hemel Hempstead for a family of four with a Family & Friends Railcard – £23.30

Usually: £34.00

Total Saving: £10.70


When the autumn weather offers blustery winds and rainy skies, why not spend the day exploring a museum. Liverpool’s World Museum is one that will excite both the kids and adults with rocket rides through space and journey’s to the bottom of the sea.

Travel: Off-Peak Return tickets from Manchester – Liverpool for a family of four with a Family & Friends Railcard – £21.10

Usually: £37.20

Total Saving: £16.10

Blackpool Illuminations

Stuck with what to do with your weekend? Plan a day trip to Blackpool and watch the flamboyant Blackpool Illuminations dazzle and light up the entire promenade. Switch on from early September until November for spectacular views, which the whole family can enjoy.

Travel: Direct Anytime Return tickets from Leeds – Blackpool for a family of four with a Family & Friends Railcard – £46.10

Usually: £81.30
Total Saving:

On average, Railcard users save £130 annually, making it worth over four times as much as it costs. Plus, in addition to saving on travel costs, the Family & Friends Railcard offers discounts on theatre tickets and days out.

For more information visit www.familyandfriends-railcard.co.uk

Rail fares listed correct at the time of posting


Brexit and the Rising Cost of Food

by Adam on October 18, 2016


shopping tips for supermarketsAre you a big fan of Marmite, like my girlfriend?

Or maybe PG Tips? Or a favourite of mine…a Pot Noodle?!

All these products and more have recently become scare in Tesco’s shelves, and simply become unavailable on their online site because of a price dispute with Unilever.

The long and short of it is Unilever wanted to increase the price of many products which the supermarket didn’t want to absorb the costs or increase their prices. Unilever’s desire to increase prices came as a result of the sharp decrease in the value of the pound that has been falling since the Brexit vote in the summer.

To shed more light on the issue, the CEO of mobile crowdsourcing company BeMyEye, Luca Pagano provided a price analysis of cupboard essentials across supermarkets, convenience stores and off licences across the country and has revealed some interesting price differences across the UK, particularly for my favourite, Pot Noodles!

Luca believes that this news marks a shift in the ways that retailers price goods, subsequently meaning that the way consumers shop will change. Retailers and suppliers will ultimately need to have a real world view of their pricing and keep their eyes on the competition during these testing times.Many thanks,


Luca Pagano, CEO of BeMyEye:

“Tesco is the first supermarket that has experienced friction with suppliers following the vote for Brexit. Locked in a price war, the grocer has taken the drastic move of removing Unilever items from shelves, including Pot Noodles.

“This is just the beginning of the changing dynamic between retailers and suppliers. Whether prices of well-known brands are driven up, or removed entirely from shelves, this should be a signal for consumers to shop around to find the best prices.

“For example, in our recent Price Index, we found that actually, the cheapest place to buy a Pot Noodle is an off-licence. The average price of a Pot Noodle is £1.02, whereas you could source one for just 50p at your local off-licence. 

“Brexit is predicted to affect prices, and thus the way that consumers shop will change. Retailers and suppliers need to have a real world view of their pricing and keep their eyes on the competition during these testing times.”

At the time of writing, Unilever and Tesco have come to an agreement but this might not be the last time consumers are impacted by rising prices as our imports become more expensive due to the falling value of the pound.

So if you excuse me I’m off to my local off-licence to find some bargain noodles. 




How to Get the Best Deal on Your New Car

by Adam on October 17, 2016

CarBuying a new car can unleash all sorts of questions, such as:

  • What do I need the car for? (E.g. commuting, local use only, doing the school run, etc.)
  • How much can I afford to buy it?
  • Do I buy it outright or sign up to a finance scheme?
  • What other associated costs would I need to allocate funds for? (E.g. fuel costs, maintenance, car insurance, road tax, etc.)
  • Where do I begin my search? (E.g. car dealerships, online comparison websites, etc.)
  • How do I make sure that I get the best deal on my car?

It’s likely you could get the best deal on a car if you pay in cash. However, if you need a car and haven’t saved enough, then understanding how car finance works is very important.

Understanding how car finance works

In order to ensure that you get the best deal when you buy a car, we think the following pointers could help you better understand how car finance works:

  • three-fingersWhether you’re buying a car for the first time, or getting an upgrade, if the price of the car that you have set your eyes on is what you can afford, you may be eligible to purchase it on a finance scheme, provided of course that:

a) The seller has a finance scheme available on offer

b) You can afford to make the payments in instalments and

c) You have a good credit score

  • Factors b) and c) are interconnected in some ways. This is because if you have a high credit score, it suggests that you have the financial clout to repay any credit that you may have taken out in the recent past.
  • Whether it is from a car dealership or via a comparison website, the business from which you are making a purchase would have to trust that you can pay the full price, in addition to an interest charge which can vary depending on the terms and conditions of the credit agreement that you have with the car financer.
  • The difference between buying a car upfront and outright with buying one on finance is that you would be able to make the payments in periodic instalments.
  • For these reasons, the car financer would need to know how creditworthy you are, i.e. how trustworthy you are when it comes to making the payments. So, they would need to see evidence that indicates to them that you can make the payments.
  • Please bear in mind that if you are unable to keep up with your repayments, your car could be repossessed by the retailer and your credit score could be affected negatively.

What do I need to show as creditworthy evidence?

A credit score represents how trustworthy you are as a borrower when it comes to making credit repayments, be it through a credit card, a credit agreement, a finance scheme, a loan of some kind, or a mortgage.

How credit-savy are you? Check out this quiz to find out

Your credit score is a 3-digit number that ranges between 0 and 999, where a high numerical value is considered to be a good credit score, while a low numerical value is considered to be a bad credit score.

A good credit score can indicate to lenders that you can be trusted when it comes to paying them back the amount that you had borrowed as well as any other costs involved, such as interest rates, etc.

You may also be able to get a loan deal that has low interest rates and more flexible terms and conditions thanks to having a good credit score.

In other words, a good credit score can be the key to the best deal on your new car!

About the Author

MyCreditMonitor (www.mycreditmonitor.co.uk) provides you with your credit score and credit report to help improve your credit management.