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Life on line – Covid 19

This is a time of a pandemic. Some people are listening to the advice given to us by the Government. However, others are not. What I have seen are the that greed has over taken sensibility. There are shops in orange that are only letting 5 to ten people in their shops. At one supper market they are only letting ten in at a time for social distancing. but outside they are bunching up like sardines to get in. While I have seen a clothing shop letting in only 5 at a time and the people are standing queue with the 4 square meters isolation zone.

Also I have noticed that the younger people are taking all this as some sort of joke while those of 30 plus are being sensible. However there was one report in Orange that a family sent their kid to school after being on a cruse. Head line reads “Orange father’s anger at lack of communication over child’s classmate who holidayed on coronavirus cruise ship

I am a member of two organisations. they are both using the internet to keep the organisations going. Creating social circles with Zoom, an internet service that allows multiple person conferencing. At church the same is done. The sermon is being done via Youtube and fellowship with Zoom.

My work place is also changing their mode of operations. At work I was a Drug and Alcohol worker in a residential setting. We have closed and decommissioned the unit ready and prepared to start up again at a moments notice. However, now we are planning to deliver Drug and Alcohol services via Distance Education. All that we did do in house will now be delivered via phone and what ever other form of communication that is available to our clients. SO if all our clients have are phones then it’s by phone, but if they have internet at home then we utilise it as well. We are also taking this time to up skill. 

I have specific jobs that have been commissioned to me with this great change. It is nerve racking but exciting at the same time. For the first time in years I finally feel valued at work. I was trained for so much more and ignores just as much for so long, I will now utilise my Ba. of Social Science (Psychology). 

 

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Covid19 Impact

I woke today after seeing the PM on the news giving that speech that closed the industries that have the largest Casual working pool. My wife’s work then called up at 10 am telling her that she is stood down till further notice. My kids do not really understand what the impact of this is. She was going to go down to Center Link and as we drove past there was a line up out the door. My wife’s sister is working at the same place and is in the same boat.

With me, I work as a Drug and Alcohol Worker. and our unit is in Lockdown until further notice. So I still have a job for the short term. This is conditional on 3 things if any one of those three events happens then we too are closing down. We are taking extra courses to deal with our knowledge surrounding Covid 19. https://covid-19training.gov.au/

I went to town today and besides Center Link, the City was a ghost town. The food court was empty, all the eateries were closed. The shops that were open, the people behind the counter all wore latex gloves. Furthermore, the shops all had hand sanitiser on the counters for customers to use. Also, people that were in town were practising the 2-meter distance. So you can see that Orange is doing the best to follow the government’s instruction. Granted the shelves are still empty of toilet paper, paster, and rice. 

Walking past some of the shops. I would look in and see the shop keepers looked down and had their heads down on the counter. What was a bustling plaza is like nothing I have ever seen.

Although the media is not talking about it I know we are in a recession. The Australian dollar is down to almost half it was a year ago. Billions have been taking off the stock market. To boot it off even better the interest rates have dropped yet again last week. All I can say is this is a buyers market if you have the money to spend, otherwise, it is the worst time ever for people in the middle. What I mean to say is that the business owners are getting Government grants. People on Centrelink payments, ie, the unemployed and unemployable will be getting a spending bonus of $750 at the end of the month, and again later in the year.

This Business, of having an online secondhand shop, was a hobby for me and something I enjoy doing. I like the game and I love a lot of this beautiful stuff that is here on this web page. I put a lot of my time into this website. But now with the impact of Covid19 I will be relying on the income from this site. I have noticed that from the time Covid19 was announced there has been a tern down in the number of people looking through my page. I can understand this because an estimated 100,000 people have become unemployed in the last 4 days. and I would not be surprised that it will double by the end of the week.

I was going to have an online auction on this page to promote more sales. However, there is a Make an Offer button on each item. So I have changed my mind about this. If you wish to ask if I would drop my price with the items feel free to make an Offer. This is the safest way to buy.

ALSO

If you see an Item you like or have something to say about an item. feel free to leave a comment on the item. Perhaps you know a fact about the item that I or others may not know 🙂

Stay healthy and be safe.

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Common Error Made when making an Offer

One of the common mistakes that I have seen on my web page is that when someone tries to make an Offer.

When you make an offer a section opens up that askes for some info.

Quantity :- It is a waste of time and will guarantee a DECLINE of the offer if you put in an amount greater than the amount in stock. If you see 7 items in the picture but there is only 1 in stock. This means that the 7 items are sold as one stock item.

Price Each :- This is the price you wish to place on each stocked item. Thus if there is “3 in stock” and you wish to buy 2 of the items. Place 2 in the “Quantity” and your offer for each item in the “Price Each”.

Your Name :- This is private. I do not even see your name. This is only for the email that will be sent to you once the offer is accepted or rejected.

Your Email Address :- This is private. I do not even see your name. This is only for the email that will be sent to you once the offer is accepted or rejected.

Then tick the “I am not a robot” and submit offer.

The Offer will be on display till I accept the offer. This gives others a chance to increase on your offer. This is a bit like an Auction, but not quite. An email will be sent to you informing you that the offer has been accepted or rejected. If accepted there will be a link in the email that will direct you to the item with your offer accepted. then you have a choice to buy the item or not. 

Sounds difficult – but it really isn’t. 

Make an Offer
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How to sell to a Dealer

Often when someone is wanting to sell items, they will either overvalue their items due to the items age or sentimental value. Then there is an emotional attachment that may be surrounding the process of the sale. Then the Dealer will either ask you how much you want for the item/s or just give you a direct offer. either way, the seller’s emotions will be heightened. and in some cases act with their Bird Brain or reptilian Brain. This part of the brain encompasses the Amygdala and part of the Limbic System. Hence, the emotions will override the sellers thinking and interpret the offer as an insult or a treat of being “Ripped Off”.

As a seller, you need to treat an offer as a tender for your items. There are always more ways than one dealer to sell to. You are not forced to sell anything if you have planned ahead.

If you treat this as a tender there are a few ways you can do this. You can have it on a per item tender, or bulk buy. There are some dealers that will only do a bulk buy offer on your items. Just remember that you are able to give a counter offer. So if you have 2 dealers offering the same price or similar offer and there is one that you prefer you can go back to them and tell them that you just got an offer of a little more and are they willing to up their offer. Just remember that many dealers know each other and may ring the other one up to see that the seller is not trying to tell a lie about it. If you decide to play one dealer off with the other dealer, this is quite ok because this is like an auction, and the dealers know that you just want the best price you can get for your items.

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Trip Home – Looking for a Wiper

I had to travel about 3 hours to Penrith to pick up mu Foster Child from seeing his dad. This was just after a night shift at work. Yes I have a full time job as a Drug and Alcohol Worker (D&AW). Energy drinks in times like this are my best mate. All went well going to Penrith with my wife riding shot-gum.

On our way back home it started to rain a bit. The first precipitation for months. This is when I desperately needed new windscreen wipers. I stopped off at 5 different service stations. 

When one stops at a service station one would expect to find those essential things that cars need. Like oil, wipers, blinker lights, and stuff like that, along with snacks.

Well this is not so, and I quote “You need to go to places like supper cheap auto for that stuff”. If you break down after closing time, you are stuffed.

I had to wait till today to get new wipers.

I just could not believe it. did I wake up in an alternate universe or have things really change that much. Granted I did not need to buy anything for the car in an emergency for a long time.

Well, there you go… A day in the life of..

 

 

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What does it take to be your own Boss?

I see a lot of adds on social media and FB advertising the opportunity to be an Eauntripenure. I see them and just shake my head. I am convinced they want people to be data entry people or people just to advertise their good for them. I may be a cynic about this, but I really do not believe that people would give away opportunities with such large rewards that they propose at times.

Sure start your own web page, but without you advertising that site, no one will come.

  • Then you will sell someone else stuff on your web page?
  • What is the commission you will get?
  • Will you pay to have a web page on their server?
  • How much time will you spend on selling something for a commission?

Just talk to any person that runs a business and they will all tell you the same thing.

It takes all your time, you need to be married to there business. That is to say, the shop takes priority. You need all the skills of being a good bookkeeper, marketing, and you need to know what makes your shop run. That is you. If you do not know how to do it you will pay others to do it for you. Above all, you need to love what you do.

Not to mention you need to know about contract law and any governmental statutes that dictate over your type of business. 

What I know about running Auctions and having a second-hand shop, and to give that knowledge away as an opportunity to others, comes at a cost.

 

 

 

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What does it take to Post an Item?

What does it take to Post an Item?

I have been asked often about what it takes to post items?

  • As you can see I need to take photos of each item.
  • Crop each picture and then reduce the size of the to make the size less than 1 meg in size.
  • Weigh each item and then measure it, so that postage can be calculated.
  • Upload the pictures.
  • Write the title and short description.
  • Once this is done, I wrap the item and box it waiting for the sale.
  • Catalogue the item so I know where the item is stored.
  • Then when the item is sold, I retrieve the item from storage.
  • Bubble wrap the items.
  • Box the item.
  • Take the item to the post office and send it.

It takes about 15 minutes to put one item up on the web page. Anyone that has ever sold something of FaceBook or eBay knows what it takes.

This why I was so proud of the long work of reaching 3000 items for sale on the web page. Just think 3000 X 15min = 45000 minuets.

or 750 hours of work, that’s not including so many other items that were already sold.

Unlike so many other Eshop pages, I have one-off items, as the nature of the secondhand business. While I do have another full-time job. Time to post items is hard to find at times.

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OMG – When things just do not work

OMG

I installed a plugin so that other people (Vendors) may also sell their items on my web page. I wanted to do this for free to those with an ABN. BUT…

I took in a deep breath of Oxygen.

I almost set fire to the computer so that it would burn like Magnesium.

The plugin had a great right-up about it. Lots of great reviews. But it looked good from the front end, that what all of you, the visitors, to this web page could see. But on the back end, that is a different story.

I could no longer write these blog postings.
I could no longer post items up on the page.
I could not edit my pages.

Really, in short, My page fell apart on the back end. I can only say that I am so glad that I made a backup of the page before I installed the plugin. 

I am sorry the page was down for about a day. But these things happen… Hopefully not that often. 

Thankfully any purchases that were made were recorded and they will be sent out ASAP. This all happened on the 6th of December 2019. 

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When to use: Cash ‘Vs’ Card

Cash Vs Card

I have transferred easily to being a cashless person, though I have found that I should carry both cash and card. This post is driven by an advertisement I saw on TV. There was a man telling the viewer that “if you are using cash you are still in the stone age”. This drove me to think about the Pros and Cons of Cash as opposed to Card.

When I started my Business life back in the mid-1980s everything was cash or cheque. Running an Auction with cash was not difficult at all. It was the manual paperwork back then that was time-consuming. Because Back then the computer systems to run an Auction was over $20,000 for the system.

Thus I think I can talk about this subject with the authority that experience has given me. When it comes to the paperwork there is one step that has changed from cash to EFTPOS. That is it is needed that the paid receipts need to equal the same amount of the cash and cheques tallied. then it is banked. The paperwork has remained the same.

I vividly recall when the GST (Goods and Services Tax (VAT in the UK)) was introduced the time spent on paperwork tripled, by the manual system. But now with computer systems like Quickbooks, Zero, or MYOB that has made it faster. This is why I find it strange that there is a report that states that 29 days in lost productivity a year in just doing paperwork in Mybusiness

However, now I walk it to any small store and they have their stock on the computer systems, record their food and beverage orders on computer systems. This practice I find amusing. I really feel that you do not need to spend money on computerizing your small business. Triplicate recept book is really all you need. Unless you do not trust your partner in business or the staff working for you. If this is the case you should not be in business with them in the first place. Then at the end of the business day you spend about 15 minutes on your bookkeeping package as you would do in any case. As for stock control, you can do that on your bookkeeping system or run a simple excel spreadsheet.

There really is one great advantage to running a Cash or semy-cash business. Small business has a really hard time just staying afloat in the first place, any savings that can be made is a bonus and money placed into stock. once your business expands its staff then yes the full computer system can prevent staff theft. There are other financial advantages that you can discover yourself. Operating during a blackout is one great one.

I once went to an Auction years ago, and yes there was a blackout. at the time the staff was in a panic on how to continue with the Auction without a computer. There were only 2 people in the Auction that knew how to do it. I and one of the older staff that worked there knew, and he had it all under control in no time. 

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What is the Value?

Value

What is the value of an Item?

This is not such a simple question. As there are a few variables that one must consider. Thus I will list them out and describe each one of these variables.

  • Willing Buyer – Willing Seller:

    • This is the most common form of sale. You see it almost everywhere. In the supermarkets, in second-hand shops, Hardware shops, and at the flea markets. 
    • This is where both the buyer and seller are willing to sell the item and buy the item. There is not duress in the dealing from either party.
  • Willing buyer – unwilling seller:

    • This mostly occurs when a collecter sees something in a collection and the owner of that collection does not want to part with it because of sentimental reasons. For example, You hear about a fantastic record collection and the owner has been collecting for years. You see a Beatles Single that you must have. It is not in your collection and you want it bad. You know that this record exists but could never find one for years. You want it so much that you offer a ridiculously high price, but the owner will not sell. You offer more, but they still will not sell. Finally, you reach a price that the owner knows they will never get again. reluctantly they sell.
    • As you can imagen this type of deal only happens with items that are rear or truly unique. Such as artwork, Limited editions of a hand made an item or a first edition book of age.
  • Willing Seller – Unwilling buyer:

    • This often happens when a second-hand dealer is overstocked and has no room to stoor the purchase anywhere. The item becomes undervalued and unwanted. The seller wants it moved on for whatever reason, they are moving town and do not want to take it with them, or whatever the reason. The same occurs when the items go to Auction and no-one bids on the item. The Auctioneer then will drastically devalue the item at the next auction.
    • This is sad for the seller because they know they are losing money by selling a perfectly good item.
  • Insurance Valuation:

    • When you have an item that needs to be valued for insurance purposes, the valuation is often inflated. This increases your premiums as well. But the primary reason is that the item you have to insure is a rear hard to get thing. This is where the valuer needs to do a lot of research. Scouting Auction houses and antique shops or specialty boutique shops are needed. Carters Antique Guide has done a lot of this work and that is why they charge so much for the information they are selling.  Auction price will give you a market value but for insurance, you cannot regularly buy the same item. Thus you will need to buy a similar item from a special place and then transport it home.  Hence insurance value is not a real value that you can sell your item for, a dealer will just laugh at you if you insist that the insurance value is what you want to sell the item for. Others that are not in the know may accept that value as a real value.
  • Market Value – Auction:

    • This is the real value that an item gets on the open market with a willing seller and many willing buyers. This is the arena where dealers and private people can complete together for the items on offer. The winning bidder can be assured that they can at least get their money back when trying to sell the item on. The general rule what I use is one-third of retail value is market value. But not always the case, and dealers will not even pay that. Why? because of the value of the item does depend on supply and demand. Why buy an item that is already saturated in the market place.
    • Do Not Think eBay is market value. The prices you see on eBay are only what people want to sell the item for. If you see an item with more than one bid on it and watch it till the eBay auction ends. Then that is the market value. But be warned, The item is being marketed around the world and some items are worth more in some places and not in others. This is because there may be a fad or something is in fashion. But on the other hand, you will see collectors competing to get the same item. Thus this may inflate the items market value because collectors will always pay more than dealers will.
  • Rare – Supply & Demand:

    • Supply is indicating the number of items that are on offer. While demand refers to how much people want that item. If the item is Rare then there are not that many of that item in existence. For example, a limited edition lithograph signed by the artist.
    • So if you are old enough that you can remember that items such as RC Aircrafts, Diamonds and Glomesh were once very expensive. So now you look at drones and other RC toys have come down in price to the point that it may only be worth an hour’s worth of work. Likewise, people are starting to realize that Diamonds are more common that what they were told in the past. While many people do not even know what Glomesh is nowadays. Thus we can see that the price of production has come down and the supply becomes abundant, with competing companies selling the same types of items which brings the price down. However, if an item becomes rare or in threat of becoming rare then the price will skyrocket because supply lessens but the demand increases. For example; I recall as a child there were reports of a really bad storm hitting Brazill and there was a threat that Coffee was going to soon run out in the world stock. Overnight the price of coffee increased and everyone was fighting at the shops to buy what was left on the shelf.