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A Look At Some Of Our Faviourite Websites

I don’t know about you, but I regularly come across a website and think ‘wow, what a fantastic site!’ Sometimes its because of a striking design, others its because of a great function on the website. More than anything, I’m one for clicking the bookmark tab and saving a site...

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Buying And Selling Your House Through An Online Estate Agent

Posted by Diana | Posted in Lifestyle | Posted on 15-01-2013


Everyone is looking for a bargain or to save money nowadays, and who can blame them? From food shopping where there are any number of special offers and two for the price of one, to holidays where you can get a discount by booking early and even insurance where you can usually save by buying online. The list is endless. So if bargains can be found for all these services and goods, then why not see how much can be saved if you are thinking of moving house.

If you want to go down the high street estate agent route, then it’s very likely that you are going to pay a percentage of the property sale price to the agent in fees, which can add up to thousands in today’s property market. However, if you do a little bit of research, then you will soon discover that the vast majority of online estate agencies will sell your property for a fixed fee – usually just a couple of hundred pounds; making this a very affordable choice.

Fees are able to be kept low as the online agents don’t have the same overheads as the high street agents, and it’s very likely that you will conduct your own viewings. Not such a bad thing, as after all, you are the expert of your own property and surrounding area, and can probably make a good job of it if you give it some thought. You are able to take your own photographs and submit them online, and when the details have been verified, your home will be advertised on a large number of sites giving many thousands of people the opportunity of viewing the property if interested. This has to be a much more convenient way of selling properties, and can only be a good thing for both buyers and sellers alike so if you’re looking to sell your house why not consider using an online agent instead of a traditional one?

Save Yourself Some Money By Planning Your Families Meals

Posted by Diana | Posted in Lifestyle | Posted on 10-12-2012


If you have a family, you’ll fully understand when we say that times can be tough, especially with the economy as it is at the moment! Childcare costs a fortune on it’s own but added to that, the cost of clothes, shoes, toys and just about anything else you can think of is going up rapidly! As such, we understand how important it is to ensure that your wages go as far as possible each month and we’re wanting to show you that you can save yourself money each month simply by taking time to plan your meals and preparing them in advance!

It’s a well known fact that one of a families main expenses aside their mortgage or rent is that of food each week (or however often you go to the local supermarket!) On the same note, however, it’s a well reported fact that many families find themselves reaching for the takeaway menu a lot more often than they should simply because they find that they have nothing in the cupboards to make tea or simply can’t be bothered too. As such, you really can save yourself money each week or each month by planning your meals in advance and making sure you’re prepared!

There’s literally hundreds of cheap family meals which you can make easily and quickly to feed your family and, despite common misconception, a meal which is cheap can still fill you up and taste fantastic! All sorts of meals ranging from soup to pasta dishes can be done cheaply, however you need to make sure you plan ahead!

Work out the meals you’re going to make before you go shopping each week and, that way, you can make sure you’re prepared and purchase all the ingredients you need. It’s amazing how much money you can save by planning meals to make yourself and reducing the temptation of takeaways! It’s all about planning in advance and sticking to it and you’ll be surprised how much further your food budget goes when used in this way!

Are Payday Loans Safe?

Posted by Diana | Posted in Lifestyle | Posted on 03-12-2012


We’ve looked a few times at the payday loans industry and the circumstances under which it’s generally suitable to take out such loans, however, one thing we keep hearing discussed and one question we keep hearing being asked ‘are payday loans safe?‘ As such, we thought we’d take a look into whether or not paday loans and cash loans are a safe option for those looking to borrow money and what you should always keep in mind when searching for a payday loan lender.

First things first; in general, payday loans are safe. Payday loan lenders must be approved just in the same way as other financial lenders are (by the FSA), however what you must take into account is that this refers to lenders, those who actually lend you the money. Where some of the issue surrounding lenders can arise is that many aren’t actually lenders but are brokers who simply collect leads and sell these on to other lenders. In most circumstances, you’ll want to know exactly who you’re applying to so do your homework and make sure you’re applying for a loan through a payday loan lender or trusted broker. You’ll generally be able to find out from their website whether they’re a broker or a lender but, as general rule, do your homework. Of course, in many instances, brokers are completely genuine and legit and will often get you the very best deals on loans, however, you just need to be extra careful to make sure you’re dealing with a trusted company.

Secondly; always be sure to only take loans which you can afford to repay. Where many people get the fact that payday loans aren’t safe from is to do with the fact that a high level of interest is charged if you don’t repay within the agreed time frame. Payday loans are a fantastic solution to short term financial problems, however if you know you can’t repay such a loan at the end of the money; stay away! Payday loans are only there to be used if you’ve got short term financial difficulties and should never be used as a long-term solution.

Always keep the above thoughts in mind and you’ll be fine! As a general rule, payday loans are as safe as any other loan and should never be considered to be a risk so long as you can repay on the agreed date!

Renting a Room VS Renting a Flat

Posted by Diana | Posted in Living Arrangements | Posted on 22-11-2012


If you do not need much space and you want to save money renting a room is the way to go. If you need more space and you can spare the extra cash than renting a flat is the way to go. You want to go the most economical way you can.

There are advantages in both situations. Ultimately what it comes down to is two factors how much you want to spend and how much space you really need. The later of the two factors is really personal preference.

A Room

Often when you decide on a room you are getting more than just a room. Most room rentals have kitchen use. Some even have their own bathroom on suite. There are some other perks that you can come across when you are looking to rent a room.

In some cases there are other perks like use of the garden. The biggest plus of renting a room is that you save big money. You save a lot of money and in many cases it is sort of like renting a flat with a flatmate.

If you can find the right situation where you have many perks and freedoms to move about the rest of the house you may be much better off taking the room.

A Flat 

In many cases you may need more space, maybe you have a child or even a pet that requires a bit more room. Maybe you just want to have more room to roam around. A flat rental will certainly give you more space.

Of course you will for sure pay more money for a flat but you will also get the room and the privacy that you want. A flat is ideal if you can afford the extra expense. You can find flats that have gardens and added storage space.

They are both good options with each being better than the other at different stages in life. It all depends on where your priority is. If you want to save money than the you are likely to do better with  a room. If you need more space and can afford it than the flat would be perfect.

You can find either situation by doing a simple search online. You can search for both than compare your options to make a decision. Weigh out your choices and than make a decision.

We brought you this guest post from RoomBuddies.com, a leading online resource for those looking for rooms to rent in Birmingham and other UK cities.

In What Instances Should You Take A Payday Loan

Posted by Diana | Posted in Lifestyle | Posted on 26-10-2012


With the payday loans industry as a whole receiving a wealth of bad press for numerous reasons in recent month’s, we thought we’d take a look at in which instances you should take a payday loan. Whilst the industry as a whole has been met with bad publicity, it doesn’t need to have been! Payday loans can provide an absolutely fantastic solution to those in short term financial difficulties (for example when the car breaks down or the boiler breaks down in the middle of winter) and allows borrowers to have money in their accounts in as quick as just a couple of minutes following application!

Of course, payday loans aren’t for everyone, however in certain circumstances, they really can be a life saver. They should only ever be used as a short term financial solution, however, for many people, these are the most common type of financial difficulties. Let’s say, for example, that your boiler breaks down in the middle of winter and it’s still 2 weeks to go until payday. So long as you can afford to repay the loan when you’re next paid (or can sort a long term solution by then), a payday loan is likely the best option.

It can take weeks for a traditional bank loan to be approved and for you to receive the money and, in circumstances such as the above, it’s simply too long. If it’s the middle of winter and you’re without a boiler…you need it sorting in hours as opposed to days (or weeks). A payday loan, in this instance, can ensure you have money in your account within hours and, so long as you know you can repay it, there’s no issues.

Whilst payday loan lenders have received criticism, there really isn’t any need for it to have happened. A spokesperson from KwikCash.co.uk stated to us, “Payday loans offer a fantastic solution to those in short term financial difficulties and, so long as they’re used responsibly, there’s no issues. So long as you can pay back the loan when you get paid, it should be thought of no differently as an advance on your wages! You’ll be able to make that emergency purchase or payment and, when it comes to payday, all is back on track!”

The Health Benefits Of Hot Tubs

Posted by Diana | Posted in Home Comforts | Posted on 23-10-2012


We recently had a look at hot tubs (see post here) and thought we’d continue on with that and take a look at some of the health benefits to be had from hot tub use. There’s been a real rise in the use of hot tubs for health purposes in recent year and, because of this, people are starting to see them more as a product for anyone as opposed to a luxury item only owned by the rich and the famous. If you suffer from conditions such as arthritis, insomnia or type 2 diabetes; hot tubs could help you no end and the cost of purchasing one seems a small price to pay when the health benefits are taken into account.

First of all; hot tubs are fantastic to help relieve the aches and pains which come associated with arthritis. If you suffer from arthritis, you no doubt go for regular physiotherapy sessions and have perhaps even tried hydrotherapy before. If so, you’ll know that it works a treat at helping you get on with your day to day life a bit better and the chance to be able to have this comfort in your own home would be fantastic. By purchasing a hot tub, you could have a quick soak each morning and have that bit of relief from the pains which come with arthritis.

In addition to this, hot tubs have been proven to lower the blood sugar levels of those with type 2 diabetes and even help those with insomnia get a good nights sleep! It’s amazing really, when you think about it, that simply spending time relaxing in a hot tub could have health benefits but it does and, as such, they’re becoming increasingly popular in the UK at the moment exactly for that reason.

This post comes to you from Vita Spa Hot Tubs (www.vitaspa-hottubs.co.uk), a UK based importer of a fantastic range of Arizona manufactured hot tubs.

Sandy Lane Barbados – The Perfect Antidote To The Recession

Posted by Diana | Posted in Lifestyle | Posted on 14-10-2012


Everywhere you go, someone is talking about the recession and its negative effect on us. We’re all having to watch our spending and think twice before we splash out on luxuries, but for some who are managing to keep their heads above water, then maybe going off on a holiday of a lifetime is just what’s needed.

Sandy Lane Barbados could be just the location you are looking for. Popular with the rich and famous since it opened in 1961, it is still delivering first class service to this day and is considered to be one of the finest places to stay whether you are wanting a romantic break for two or an action packed family holiday.

The choice of accommodation will suit all kinds of budgets and tastes from rooms in the Orchid Wing with views of the tropical gardens, to the Ocean rooms, which as their name suggests are just on the edge of the beautiful crescent beach, so close you can stroll across the white sand to the warm Caribbean Sea. If you can really stretch your budget then there is the superb luxury five bedroom villa. It’s located in the middle of the resort within its own gardens, and offers complete seclusion coming with its own team of dedicated staff to provide everything you could wish for.

The spa at Sandy Lane is almost out of this world and offers the very best in relaxation and luxury, from its marble reception area and staircases to its water therapies and beneficial treatments – all aimed to provide the ultimate relaxing experience. Try the hydrotherapy pool or the Jacuzzi where therapeutic bubbles will sooth your body and stimulate your skin.

Wherever you choose to dine at Sandy Lane then you will not be disappointed. The four different restaurants offer fabulous tastes from around the world and have something to suit everyone, all within magnificent locations at the resort.

If you read any of the Sandy Lane Barbados reviews, they will confirm what many travellers already know – that you are guaranteed to experience a holiday of a lifetime and will not be disappointed in your choice. It will be money well spent.

Advice On How To Save Money In Times Of Recession

Posted by Diana | Posted in Lifestyle | Posted on 02-10-2012


The financial crisis has affected many people across the world. With job cuts and wages being frozen, public services are also being cut as well by local governments. As the UK is experiencing its longest double dip recession in a generation, you should try to save as much money as possible. Here are a few ideas which could be used in order to save money.

Create a budget

Although it can be a laborious task, you should create a budget which details the amount of money which will be spent every week or month. If the amount of spare capital which you have is less than what you had several months ago, you need to spend within your means.

It can be very easy to create a budget – all you need to do is write down every expenditure which has to be paid every month e.g. utility bills, mortgage payments, rent. The money which has been spent previously should also be considered too and you can determine where money is being wasted. When you stop paying for items that you don’t need, it can be used to pay for something else which you actually require.

Go elsewhere for your groceries

You might normally shop at one of the larger supermarkets. Tesco, Asda and Morrisons are very popular supermarkets and regularly have offers which aim to help shoppers with spending as little money as possible on their weekly shopping bill. There are other supermarkets in the UK which are far cheaper.

Aldi and Lidl mainly stock brands which aren’t well-known but are considerably cheaper. Many shoppers have a close connection to leading brands but the cost of buying them can be very high when compared to a brand which is not widely recognised. For example, a tin of beans which is bought in Aldi will look and taste just the same as a leading brand.

The fruit and vegetables at Aldi are significantly cheaper than what other supermarkets charge. Even when Tesco and Asda have reduced the price of their goods, what has to be paid is still more expensive. Some critics believe that Aldi and Lidl sell fruits and vegetables at a lower price because they tend to sell British produce which is irregularly shaped – Tesco and Asda are notorious for rejecting fruit and vegetables which are not a particular size. When shopping at Aldi and Lidl, a small fortune can be saved.

Reconsider your means of travel

If you use a car every day, the total amount of money which is spent on petrol can be considerable. Although having the use of a car is vital in some situations, there are many instances when you are driving it unnecessarily. If you only work a mile away from where you live, do you have to use your car? Public transport could be used instead or you may decide to walk to work. If you work several miles away from where you live, you could cycle there instead. Not only will you save a lot of money but you can improve your physical fitness as well.

Do you need a TV licence?

It is not compulsory for every person who views television programmes to have a TV licence. You only need a TV licence if you watch programmes live. If you view your favourite show on your laptop using the BBC iPlayer or 4oD after it’s been televised and never when it is being shown live, you don’t need to have a television license at all. Although the cost of a TV licence is currently frozen at £145.50 for a colour television and £49.00 for a black and white television, it is still money which doesn’t have to be spent. Radio is different because a licence is not needed at all in order to enjoy this popular medium.

By rethinking how you spend your money, you can save a significant amount of money during a recession.

This post was brought to you by Offshore Formations. Please see offshore company formations for more information.

Garden Rooms Make The Perfect Home Extension

Posted by Diana | Posted in Garden Luxuries | Posted on 14-09-2012


Who doesn’t love spending time in their garden? If it’s nice weather in summer, very little beats sitting around in your garden with friends and family and enjoying yourself! However, for many, they long for additional covered space in their garden to relax in or even to spend time in if the weather isn’t brilliant. Garden rooms extensions are a fantastic option for anyone wishing to expand their living space into their gardens and make the perfect alternative to a traditional extension or conservatory.

Whether you’re fancying an extension to provide somewhere for your kids to play, for you to chill out in or fancy your own garden offices, garden rooms offer a fantastic solution to your needs. They’re configurable to your own specification and are able to be fully plumbed or fitted with electricity. Whatever your requirements, it’s an option well worth looking into if you fancy expanding your garden and house space.

When compared with traditional extensions and conservatories; garden rooms make a fantastic alternative due to the fact that they’re much easier to construct and that they, in many cases, work out cheaper. In addition, they look absolutely brilliant and are sure to get your friends and family talking!

In terms of the best garden rooms to choose? We’ve always found those from Oeco to be absolutely fantastic and offer a superb level of customer service. Of course it’s your call, however if we were to suggest a manufacturers to contact when looking for garden rooms, it’d be Oeco every time.

It’s at least something to consider and we’re sure you won’t regret your purchase! It’ll offer a fantastic level of extra space for either you or your kids and, more than anything, it’s something that little bit different when compared to traditional extensions and conservatories.

Recovering From A Car Accident

Posted by Diana | Posted in Lifestyle | Posted on 12-09-2012


In the unfortunate event that you’re involved in a car accident, it can really shake you up! Even if you’re not seriously injured (which is what we hope the outcome is!), there’s a very good chance that you’ll think twice before getting behind the wheel again any time soon. Being involved in a car accident can be a serious ordeal and it can, and does, take time to fully recover from it…some people never recover. However, we thought we’d take a look at the best ways of recovering from an accident and what you can do to get yourself back on your feet and behind the wheel.

First things first; if the accident was through no fault of your own, perhaps you were hit by a speeding driver or someone simply misjudged an overtake, then it’s very likely that you’ll be eligible to claim compensation. With a significant number of accident claim solicitors popping up around the country, it should’t be too difficult to find someone who can assist you claim road traffic accident compensation. Of course, it’s not going to change what happened, but it at least gives you a little bit of justice and some financial compensation for the ordeal. Most claim solicitors work on a no win no fee basis, meaning that unless your claim is successful, you won’t have to pay a penny. For us, based in the North West, our suggestion would be to pay a visit to AYB Law in Preston, by far the regions most accomplished accident solicitors.

Above all; consider visiting your doctor and speaking with a counselor. A lot of the reasons behind people not wanting to get back behind the wheel or in the passengers seat are psychological and it’s amazing how much it can help speaking with a professional about it. It’s at least worth considering!

More than anything, take your time! No one is going to make you get back behind the wheel the week after, however sometimes, getting back in the car and showing yourself it’s safe and the accident was a one off is the best way to recover!