The Silver Lining of Reduced Hours

The Silver Lining of Working Reduced Hours

My family was very fortunate to make it through the post-pandemic world relatively unscathed. However, the economic and financial impacts of covid have finally reached our household. Although I have been steadily employed for the last decade, I now find myself back among the job seekers. Due to client cutbacks and reduced hours, it’s time to take a step back and create a new game plan. While it has put more constraints on our budget, there is a silver lining of having reduced hours.

What is the Silver Lining of Reduced Hours?

1. It presents an opportunity to reassess your skills.

If you have been in the same position for years, it’s easy to get used to the same work routine day after day. While you become more efficient in your role, you may not always realize what new skills or knowledge you have gained.

So when you are seeking new employment, the first step is to revisit your resume. As I updated my information, it forced me to reassess my skills and take stock of my appeal to potential employers. Not only did this help me realize my value as an employee, but it also built my confidence in my abilities going into the interview process.

2. Working fewer hours provides more time for self-improvement.

Although I’ve been working in the same field for many years, advancements in technology and AI have created new concerns. For example, there is less job security as AI is applied in new ways and replaces human labor. However, it also helped me recognize that I could improve my candidacy by learning new skills.

One silver lining of having reduced hours is that you have more time to pursue additional training or take classes to do this. Depending on what you choose, it could lead to a new certification, a salary increase, or put you in a new candidate pool altogether.

3. Living on a budget reinforces important financial lessons.

No matter who you are or how much you make, it’s always uncomfortable when you have to tighten the purse strings. But with reduced hours and income, it’s important to revisit the monthly budget.

My husband and I discovered that this was a good exercise to help us brush up on budgeting. And, it was a great opportunity to review our spending habits. As we adapt to the new circumstances, we will continue to make adjustments where necessary, find ways to save, and eliminate unnecessary expenses.

Turning Misfortune Into Opportunity

There is no denying that times are tough. But, you can’t lose yourself in despair. Instead, I am choosing to turn my misfortune into an opportunity to find something even better. Although I am fully committed to the job search, I am also working to make myself an outstanding candidate.

The facts are that the world and employment process has changed. Even if I was a stellar candidate a decade ago, I expect to face rejection. But, I also know that anything worth having won’t come easy. It takes effort, fortitude, and persistence to make things happen.

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The Top 3 Places to Sell Collectibles for Maximum Profit

Top 3 Places To Sell Collectibles for Maximum Profit

My dad was quite the junk collector. In his final years, we delved into the world of antiques and collectibles as we began sorting through the mountain of treasures he accumulated over 40 years. As we went along, I quickly learned how to distinguish trash from treasure. And, I also found many corners of the internet with other enthusiasts. Talking to other like-minded individuals helped me gain a wealth of knowledge. But more importantly, I also uncovered the best places to sell collectibles for maximum profit.

The Top 3 Places to Sell Collectibles for Maximum Profit


For years, eBay set the standard within the collectibles market. Even today, it remains one of the most trusted and established marketplaces. It’s also the first site I visit to look up comparable items and approximate prices. However, it has become oversaturated since people have begun selling just about anything you can imagine through their site.

With more competition, you won’t see the astronomical profits that many of the earliest users experienced. But, it’s still one of the best places to sell collectibles. Not only does it have a wide reach, but also an extremely active marketplace. And with its money-back guarantee and auction feature, it will help you get the best price.

As a seller, you have free listings for up to 250 items per month. Once you reach the limit, the site charges an additional $0.35 per listing. And, they take an average of 10% of the final value. Keep in mind that the fees vary by category, but you can find the breakdown of the seller’s fees here to help you determine if it’s worth your time.


Although most people think of Etsy as the marketplace for handmade items, it also has a thriving market for vintage and antique items. However, they do have more restrictions for listing on their site. For example, it requires that all items are at least 20 years old to qualify as vintage.

If your collectibles fall within this category, Etsy offers a user-friendly platform and a more targeted market. With this site, you are more likely to encounter buyers and sellers who are familiar with specialty items and rare collectibles.

Furthermore, it has lower fees. Etsy only charges a $0.20 listing fee per item and a 6.5% commission. So if you are eligible to sell on their site, it may be the better option to help you get maximum profits for niche items.

Facebook Marketplace

While most of the world is going digital, you still have collectors who live in an analog world. Facebook Marketplace provides a happy medium between online and in-person selling. And best of all, it’s free to list items. It only charges a commission if you have a merchant account. Even then, it’s only a 5% transaction fee.

Facebook Marketplace can give you exposure in local and national markets. It has thousands of groups you can advertise in, including ones dedicated to specific interests. And, it puts you directly in touch with potential buyers. If you find a serious buyer, you can arrange meet-ups or facilitate long-distance sales through shipping.

There are minimal limitations to what you can sell. But, it must be a physical product and will have to be approved by group admins. But if you violate their rules, they may remove access and revoke selling privileges. So, make sure you read the fine print so you don’t find yourself blocked from their platform.

Important Details When Dealing with Collectibles

Although your collectibles may have value, they are only worth what people are willing to pay for them. But with more online marketplaces, you have more opportunities than ever before. With special niche websites that deal in highly specialized items, you can connect with the right audience.

With so many platforms, it’s important to do your research. It’s best to seek out forums and talk to other collectors. This will help you choose the platform best suited for selling your collectibles.

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Financial Freedom Unveiled: Determining the Required Funds for Early Retirement

Financial Freedom Unveiled: Determining the Required Funds for Early Retirement

While many people dream of retiring early, younger generations are taking a more cynical view these days. Although it has become more difficult to save with rising inflation and cost of living, it is still attainable. If this is one of your financial goals, here’s what you need to know to determine the required funds for early retirement.

How Do You Determine the Required Funds for Early Retirement?

There are many reasons why people want to retire early. Whether you want more time with loved ones, opportunities to travel, or the chance to pursue your passion projects, you need to be financially independent to make it happen.

When planning for retirement, the general guideline is the rule of 25 – save 25 times your planned annual budget.  But the earlier your retire, the more you need to save.

However, the actual dollar amount is largely dependent on your lifestyle. Most advisors recommend a 75% replacement rate for your retirement income. Once you calculate your current budget, you can determine your annual expenses. Then, consider that this will be your minimum budget for the next 30-40 years if you retire early.

Keep in mind that you will also have to account for taxes, inflation, and healthcare. Therefore, we choose to pad the estimate to leave a little more cushion in our budget.

Can the FIRE Movement Help You Retire Sooner?

The goal of early retirement has caught a lot of momentum in recent years thanks to the FIRE movement. Many who want “Financial Independence, Retire Early” are saving more aggressively to realize their goal. In some cases, people are living on a bare-bones budget and investing up to 70% of their income for retirement.

While this will help you save more to help you retire sooner, you don’t have to go to these extremes to earn the required funds for early retirement. You can still adopt this strategy but finds more moderate ways to minimize your expenses. For example, you can keep your spending in check, increase your retirement contributions, and invest in new assets that will increase your net worth and generate more income.

Important Things to Consider for Early Retirement

With strategic planning and smart investing, it is possible to retire early. However, there are a few key considerations you need to factor in since they will affect your portfolio.

    • You are unable to access Social Security benefits before you turn 62. And, you have reduced benefits the sooner you take them.
    • You are also ineligible for Medicare before age 65.
    • Although you can access your funds, there is a 10% penalty for early withdrawals from IRAs and other retirement accounts. However, the rule of 55 may allow you to withdraw from employer-sponsored retirement accounts without penalty if you leave your position by age 55.

Although many accounts offer specific advantages when you retire, you must also invest for long-term growth. Therefore, it’s best to talk with your financial advisor and research the different types of financial vehicles available to you. Not only will this help you reach your financial goals sooner, but also ensure you have enough savings to last through your retirement years.

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Cut Backs Just in Time for Vacation

Cut Backs Just In Time for Vacation

Every summer, my husband and I look forward to taking some time away together. We both have very hectic work schedules and family obligations. Unfortunately, this doesn’t leave as much time for each other as we’d like. So, we usually spend about 10 days away together, driving somewhere in the continental U.S. However, this year our budget has had some serious setbacks. But we realized we could still save our trip by making these 3 cut backs for our vacation.

3 Money-Saving Cut Backs for Vacation

Length of the Trip

Due to both budgetary and scheduling restrictions, we decided to cut the length of our trip. Although we normally enjoy 10 days together, we will have to scale it back to stay under budget.

By reducing it to 6 nights, we will save hundreds on the additional nights of accommodation, meals, and fuel costs. And, we will still make it to the national parks and most important attractions. Choosing to bypass some of the smaller points of interest that are farther off the beaten path will allow us to still afford our summer getaway.


Accommodations are another opportunity to make room in the budget. Although you want to find a place that offers security and comfort, you don’t need to spend a lot on hotels.

My husband and I don’t require much when we are on the road beyond a clean room, a hot shower, and a complimentary breakfast in the morning. Yet, we still expect to pay around $150 a night for a basic room.

For this trip, we can save a few hundred bucks by cashing in credit card rewards for hotel points. So far, we’ve earned enough to cover 3 free nights through IHG and Hilton Rewards.

You can also look for discounts on travel sites to help you save even more.

    • Priceline Express Deals sometimes offers up to 60% discounts on select locations.
    • Travelzoo sponsors one-time deals at great rates for their partners.
    • Last-Minute Travel will help you find cheap hotels that are available on the same day. And with their undercover feature, you can save even more.


Admission tickets and excursions are always what ruin my budget. No matter where we go, it seems that there is always additional tax and tickets cost more than you expect.

For this trip, we are opting for activities we both enjoy that don’t cost anything. This will mostly include hiking, swimming, and exploring nature. However, I’m also going to plan ahead and find discounts online through sites like Expedia, Viatour, or Travelzoo for the rest.

In my experience, the best deals are when you can buy passes that offer admission for multiple days or attractions for a single price, such as the U.S. Parks Pass. These allow you to maximize your options for the lowest price.

Learning to Pivot

Sometimes, life throws you expensive curve balls that force you to make adjustments. While this year has brought some large expenses in home repairs and limited time in our schedules, we were determined to make things work.

By tweaking our plans and accepting a limited budget, we will still be able to enjoy some time together. Although it may not be what we originally planned, we are making the best of it and still looking forward to it despite the cut backs that came just in time for vacation.

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How To Start an Amazon Bath Bomb Business

How To Start an Amazon Bath Bomb Business

Starting your own business can be a great way to bring in extra income. As customers become more conscious about the products they buy, some all-natural and homemade beauty products have become the foundation of very profitable businesses. So, if you have a talent for making these types of items, you could be one of them. Here are a few tips and ideas if you want to start an Amazon bath bomb business.

Why Bath Bombs?

Bath bombs are a great product because they are easy and inexpensive to make. And with low overhead costs, they are a low-risk idea for those starting their first venture.  Since most of the ingredients are everyday items you already have, it costs as little as $0.25 per bath bomb to produce them.

Bath bombs are also hugely popular and already have a thriving market. In the US, it is expected to reach $350 million in revenue by 2025. And with the ability to reach customers through social media, you could sell your products worldwide.

How Can You Start an Amazon Bath Bomb Business?

1. Perfect your product.

The first thing you have to do is perfect your product. While most use a very similar recipe, bath bombs come in a full rainbow of colors, shapes, and scents. Therefore, you need to choose which type you want to focus on and get to work perfecting your production process before you can start selling.

2. Research licensing requirements.

The next step is to learn which compliance and safety regulations apply to your bath bombs. Your product will either fall under the category of cosmetics or drugs, depending on what claims you make about it.

If you market that it has physical or mental benefits, it will be classified as a drug. This will require additional approval from the FDA for effectiveness and safety. Although it can be time-consuming and costly, the wellness market is continuing to expand.

However, if governing bodies qualify your bath bombs as cosmetic, they will apply the same rules they use for soaps and lotions. Be aware the requirements will vary between states and countries, so you need to be familiar with the rules for where you want to do business.

3. Choose your suppliers.

Choosing your suppliers will be relatively simple since bath bombs are easy to make. They only require a few essential ingredients including:

    • baking soda
    • citric acid
    • Epsom salt
    • cornstarch
    • water
    • essential oil or fragrance
    • carrier oil
    • shea butter
    • food coloring

Fortunately, you can find most of these at your local grocery store. However, you may have to order silicone molds, oils, and decorations from other suppliers. In a market where people are highly aware of the sourcing of their products, you want to guarantee the purity of the ingredients you use. So, you should be discerning and ask for certifications, references, or suggestions from aromatherapy practitioners to find the best suppliers.

4. Consider your packaging, labeling, and shipping options.

Bath bombs have a tendency to crumble if they aren’t packaged and shipped correctly. Therefore, you must ensure they are tightly sealed to avoid introducing moisture. Most sellers use shrink wrap which works very well. When you pack them, you will also want to use plenty of tissue paper, recyclable filler, or other materials to cushion them in transit.

5. Sell your product

Although you might have success selling your product in person, you can reach a wider market if you start an Amazon bath bomb business. After you set up a seller account, read through the FAQs to make sure that you understand all the rules and can comply with Amazon’s requirements. You may also consider a more specialized niche through Amazon Homemade for your product.

But if you are serious about selling bath bombs, start doing your research and learn how you can turn your hobby into a profitable business.

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10 Signs That You Have Too Much Debt

10 Signs That You Have Too Much Debt

There is a difference between “good debt” and “bad debt.” However, how do you know when it becomes a problem? If you have any of these habits, then it may be a sign that you have too much debt.

10 Signs That You Have Too Much Debt

1. You aren’t saving any money.

Learning to save money is the first lesson in money management. It’s an important skill for both your immediate needs and long-term financial goals. Therefore, you should be putting a little away every month in your emergency fund, retirement, or other savings accounts.

However, if you aren’t able to put any money into savings, this is a sign that you have bigger problems than making it til the end of the month. For those who struggle to save, it’s time to evaluate your budget and spending habits. You must learn to live below your means to avoid going further into debt.

2. Credit cards cover all your expenses.

Another sign that you have too much debt is if you rely on credit cards to cover all your expenses. Credit cards can help you build your credit history, but they can also ruin your finances if you don’t know how to use them.

Unfortunately, this debt carries the highest interest rates, usually above 20%. In the end, you pay more in interest fees, it negatively impacts your credit score, and it could affect your ability to obtain loans. So, it’s wise to only use them if you can pay off the balances every month or as a last resort when there is an emergency. Otherwise, you are setting yourself up for financial failure.

3. You only make the minimum monthly payments.

Many people are not concerned about their debt as long as they can make their payments each month. However, if you’re only making the minimum payments, you’ll never get out of debt. Their fees are designed to keep you locked in the debt cycle, sometimes paying double the principal in interest fees.

Most advisors will tell you to prioritize paying down these debts. If you aren’t able to pay off your balance each cycle, then put as much toward the principal as you can. But if you never pay more than the minimum, it could keep you buried in debt for years to come.

4. It has become a habit to use one credit card to make payments on the others.

Balance transfer offers can be an effective way to eliminate interest fees and pay down debt. But, you shouldn’t rely on credit cards to stay afloat. Furthermore, you don’t want to take on new debts to pay off outstanding ones. So, if you are rotating balances between credit cards, it’s a red flag that you have too much debt.

Making payments with one credit card for another is a delicate balancing act. This isn’t a gamble you want to take with your future.

5. Your credit cards are maxed out.

It’s embarrassing when a card is declined at the point of sale or you have to pull out another card to pay. Although it does happen occasionally, it shouldn’t be a regular occurrence. If your credit cards are maxed out, it could indicate that your spending is out of control.

When your credit cards are consistently maxed out, it increases your credit utilization which lowers your credit score. There is also a greater risk of defaulting on your payments and having them sent to collections. It will also make it difficult to obtain a loan when you need one.

6. You have had several cash advances.

Cash advances can save you in an emergency. But, they are possibly the least beneficial way to use your credit card. In addition to the high fees and interest rates, they leave you with less money in the end.

If you have had several cash advances in recent months, this most likely means that you need a better system to manage your money. Start an emergency fund or seek a financial advisor so unexpected expenses and poor spending habits don’t hold you back.

7. Your total debt is more than half your income.

Your debt-to-income ratio is an important factor in your finances. It provides a tangible measurement of how much debt you carry in comparison to how much you make. A high ratio is one of the clearest signs that you have too much debt.

Creditors look for a ratio of less than 36% when they offer loans or lines of credit. But the lower the ratio, the better. So if yours is half your income, it will be nearly impossible to obtain funding. It also leaves you with less flexibility in your finances since your income is tied up in debt repayment. The only way to address this issue is to lower your debt-to-income ratio and get out of the debt stranglehold.

8. Lenders deny your application.

Credit applications get rejected for many reasons. But if you are regularly getting turned down by lenders, it’s time to figure out why.

Look into your credit history to ensure that are no errors or inaccurate information that are impacting your score. However, if it is the result of poor financial management and bad spending habits, seek expert advice to make a plan and help you improve your situation.

9. There are several creditors and agencies calling to collect.

Mistakes happen and bills sometimes go unpaid. When this occurs, creditors will call to collect after enough missed payments. But, you don’t want to make a habit of having your bills go to collections.

If you have several creditors and collection agencies trying to contact you, it’s a serious sign that you need help. But, you shouldn’t ignore the problem or avoid their calls. In fact, you might be surprised at how flexible that can be. Most are willing to work with you by setting up a payment plan, negotiating the interest rate, or settling for a lower lump sum payment. You don’t need to live in fear of answering the phone or letting your debt control your life.

10. You don’t know how much debt you carry.

Most people know when they have too much debt. However, the difference lies in how you choose to handle it. Do you have a plan to become debt free? Or, have you given up and expect to be in debt for the rest of your life?

Your situation may seem hopeless when you are drowning in debt, but you have to start somewhere. It’s hard to face the truth, but there are financial advisors and debt relief agencies that are ready to help. You don’t have to resign yourself to your situation, but you have to be willing to take the first steps to make a change.

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How to Strengthen Your Four Walls of Budgeting

How to Strengthen Your Four Walls of Budgeting

When you are in debt, it may feel like you are digging yourself deeper with every dollar you spend. And as the bills start mounting and collection agencies are pressuring you to pay, it’s easy to panic and forget your priorities. However, knowing the four walls of budgeting can help remind you what is most important in your budget. So if you are having a hard time making ends meet, here are a few ways you can strengthen your four walls of budgeting and get closer to your financial goals.

What Are the Four Walls of Budgeting?

Dave Ramsay describes the four walls of budgeting as the essential things in your budget that you need to survive. Like the four walls of your home, these four categories represent the things you need to sustain the bare minimum standards of living.

But, the amount you spend and the definition of each wall will vary from person to person. So you have to identify them within your own budget. However, here is a basic guideline of what each wall represents.

1. Food

Humans are animals, and our bodies need fuel to function. This category should include all the food with the essential nutrition that your body needs. When tallying these expenses, you should include all your expenses for food.

2. Shelter

The second wall of budgeting deals with our basic need for shelter. This category covers all the expenses to keep the roof over your head and the lights on. For most of us, this will incorporate the largest portion of the budget.

The general guideline suggests that 30% of your income pays for housing. In addition to your monthly mortgage or rent payment, there are also property taxes, utilities, maintenance, and repairs and repair costs to consider as well.

3. Clothing

The third wall represents the basic clothing items you need in your daily life. This should account for formal and business attire at work, footwear, winter apparel, undergarments, and any other clothing items you wear from day to day.

4. Transportation

The final wall of budgeting has a great deal of variation depending on where you live. Transportation covers the amount you need to get from Point A to Point B. In some places, there is no other option than to own a vehicle. However, this comes with significant costs such as registration, insurance, maintenance, repairs, and gas.

Those who live in urban areas with modern public transit have the luxury of more options to fit the budget. Most cities have buses, trains,  or subway systems that offer monthly passes for minimal fees. Some people may even be able to ride a bike or walk to save even more.

How Do You Strengthen Your Four Walls of Budgeting?

If you want to strengthen your four walls of budgeting, you have two options: earn more income or decrease your spending. While the answer is cut-and-dried, the way to achieve it is more fluid.

Bring in More Income

The easiest way to strengthen your four walls of budgeting is by bringing in more income. These are the easiest ways to make that happen.

    • Ask for a raise. If you had a good performance this year, then asking for a raise may be well received. Try to time your request after a big win or the completion of a successful project. And, you will probably have a better chance to get it if you do it before they determine the annual budget.
    • Go for a promotion. Another option is to go for a higher-paying position. So, if you are willing to take on more responsibility, then why not get paid to do it? Start looking for positions within your company to advance your career and your savings goals.
    • Look for a second job or side hustle. Many people look for ways to bring in extra cash around the holidays You could bring in more income with seasonal work, a second job, or starting a side hustle in your spare time.
    • Find ways to generate passive income. My personal choice is to put your money to work for you. Look for investments that generate passive income to support your budget.

Reduce Your Expenses

For those who have no way of earning more money, the only option is to reduce your spending. If trimming the budget is the only way to strengthen your walls, here are a few ways that have worked for me, even on a bare-bones budget.

    • Food – The best way to reduce your food bill is to stop dining out and prepare you food at home. You can also use coupons, buy off-brand items, buy in bulk, and save more with discount shopping clubs.
    • Shelter – If the timing is right, refinancing your mortgage could save you on interest. However, you can also save money by finding cheaper accommodations or downsizing. Another idea is to look for a roommate or renter to split expenses if space allows.
    • Clothing – Since I live in athletic wear, my clothing costs are minimal. I avoid designer brands and prefer to items second-hand to save money.
    • Transportation – Choosing to sell a car or trade it in for one with a lower monthly payment is a tough decision. There are tons of ways to save on gas and car insurance, but it is a major expense. If you have to eliminate it completely public transportation, riding a bike, or walking when possible could save your budget.

Beyond the Four Walls

The four walls are a great starting point for anyone learning to live on a limited budget. However, there are other essential costs that you will need to tailor to your situation. For example, those of us who work from home must have reliable internet and cell phone service. Those with children will need childcare. And, all of us will require healthcare services at some point. Although you may be able to live without them temporarily, it’s not a long-term solution.

There is no single answer for strengthening your four walls of budgeting. Ultimately, it comes down to whatever method will help you stick to your budget. You may have to try several different approached before you find one that sticks. But, if you have determination and self-discipline, you can strengthen your walls and build a solid foundation for your future.

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How Can You Penetrate the Booming Beard Care Market?

Steps To Penetrate the Booming Beard Care Product Market

Concepts about masculinity and male hygiene have drastically changed in the last few decades. Thanks to changing social ideas as well as celebrity influence, there has been a shift in public opinions about men’s personal care. As a result, men are spending more money on grooming and beard care products. With more global demand from both individual and commercial consumers, there will also be new investment opportunities. But, how can you penetrate the booming beard care market?

Expanding the Market with Beard Care Products

As of 2021, the global market for men’s grooming products was valued at $74.8 billion dollars. However, market analysts expect there to be a huge uptick in global sales that will vastly expand the market. With a projected CAGR of 6.58% by 2030, most experts agree that the market will reach a value closer to $132.73 billion by 2030.

While this brings significant investment opportunities, there are a few things you should know before you change you investing strategy.

Changing Attitudes

Men are becoming more aware of the importance of total body care and being well-groomed, especially in professional settings. Social trends that have also made facial hair more stylish and less shabby are also helping to drive market growth. In addition to the growing personal demands, the presence of more male salons has also created new opportunities.

Introduction of New Products

Another contributing factor has been that companies are taking a broader approach to personal grooming beyond shaving. By introducing new products, other companies have the potential to capture more of the market share. Therefore, many are stimulating market expansion with new beard care products.

For example, many companies have developed new electric shavers and razors that utilize cutting-edge technology. There are also different products for new trimming techniques as well as new beard care products to moisturize, sculpt, and maintain them.

Market Restraints

However, monopolies and brand loyalty put significant restraints on market growth. There is little room for competition among the leading brands, so it’s hard for new startups to break into the market. These monopolies also discourage venture capitalists and private equity firms from investing. When companies like Gillett hold 50% of the market share for shaving products, making headway becomes even more challenging.

Furthermore, people also have fierce brand loyalty. It’s hard to attract new customers since they have relied on these products for most of their adult lives. But with growing restrictions on the chemicals and ingredients that are allowed in beard care products, it could create new opportunities within the beard care market.

Considers Before Investing in the Beard Care Market

While there may be new opportunities, it can be difficult to identify how investors can penetrate the booming beard care market. Here are a few things to consider if you are looking to invest in companies that develop, distribute, or sell beard care products.

1. There is greater demand for beard care products with e-commerce.

Although convenience stores still hold the largest market share, younger consumers rely more on e-commerce and online shopping. Not only is it easier for people who are too busy to shop in person, but they can also find more information about what products are available and best suited for their needs.

Online retailers like Nykaa are looking to tap into billion-dollar markets by developing a line for men in India. Based on their current performance, men’s grooming products are one of the fastest-growing platforms for the company and are projected to contribute 10% of the total revenue this year. It won’t be long until other online retailers realize this potential and put more resources and products that are targeted toward regional e-commerce.

2. Market analysts predict the skin care segment of men’s grooming products will expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6% by 2030.

As previously mentioned, there are several segments of the beard care market that show significant growth. However, skin care has shown the highest growth rate. As e-commerce gains a stronger foothold, market analysts predict that the market will yield about a 6.58% CAGR from 2023 to 2031.

3. There are more eco-conscious shoppers looking for products with natural ingredients.

Today’s consumers are becoming more aware of the harmful effects of certain chemicals and ingredients often used in grooming products. However, the increased awareness has led to tighter restrictions and higher production costs.

Therefore, there has been greater demand for organic products with natural ingredients. As industry giants look for alternatives, smaller companies that offer organic products will play a significant role in market demands.

4. While regional market analysis shows varying rates of growth, there will be significant market expansion worldwide.

Current market data shows that Europe has the greatest demand for grooming and beard care products. However, the Asia-Pacific region is the fastest-growing market with a CAGR of 8.1%. But, some analysts predict that North America will have the most growth potential in the coming years. This is partially due to the increase of e-commerce during rapid urbanization, more disposable income, and changing attitudes toward men’s appearance.

As personal care becomes more normalized in every culture, there will continue to be increasing demands as there is more emphasis on men to maintain and enhance their youthful appearance. Since men are becoming more conscious of their image and how it can hinder professional and personal relationships, they will be spending more money on grooming and beard care products.

Companies to Watch

Although there are no guarantees when it comes to investing, market analysts and researchers all agree that this is one area that shows huge growth potential. Based on the extensive reports from Straits Research, these are the 10 companies you should be watching for your market cues.

  • Procter & Gamble Company
  • Unilever PLC/NV
  • Edgewell Personal Care Company
  • Beiersdorf AG
  • LVMH Mot Hennessy – Louis Vuitton SE
  • LO’real SA
  • Coty Inc.
  • Natura Cosmeticos SA (NATURA)
  • Koninklijke Philips NV
  • Panasonic Corporation

What companies do you think will be the major players within this market in the years ahead? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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Why You Should Think About Renting Your Assets

renting your assets

With the rising cost of living and inflation rates, it has become necessary for many Americans to take on second jobs or look for a side gig. Today, nearly 45% of people have a side hustle of some sort. However, this can take a lot of extra time and energy that you probably don’t have. So, why not put the assets you already own to work for you? Here are a few reasons you should consider renting out your assets for extra cash.

Uncertainty for the Future

Since losing my dad last year, it has been tough for my whole family. While trying to navigate our lives without him, I have also taken on the responsibility of helping my mom with his finances and taking care of their property. I’m learning just how much of a physical and financial responsibility this really was. And, we aren’t certain if it is feasible or sustainable in the long term.

In addition to my mom’s physical limitations and health concerns, she is also living on a fixed income. It takes a lot to upkeep an acreage. However, she isn’t ready to leave the family home just yet. So, we’re looking at other ways to recover costs and maintain the property.

The idea that seems most promising is renting out assets to earn passive income. It could be a good opportunity for extra income if we can clear out some space and get things working again.

5 Advantages of Renting Out Your Assets

After talking to a few family, friends, and neighbors, here are a few reasons why we may consider renting out assets from my parents’ estate.

1. You can turn a profit from assets you aren’t using.

The most obvious advantage is the extra income. There are online platforms that provide a new way for you to earn money by renting out things you already own. And, you don’t have to invest any more money into it. You simply post your items, and the site facilitates the rest, including liability coverage to protect your assets.

If you aren’t sure that you have things people would want to rent, do some research. You might be surprised what people are looking for. For example, you can list:

  • a second home
  • extra bedrooms for tourists or long-term renters
  • office space
  • parking spaces in urban areas or near attractions
  • large outdoor spaces to host events
  • unused land for animals or agriculture
  • pools during the summer months
  • any type of storage space (including closets, basements, attics, garages, and outbuildings)
  • vehicles
  • tools
  • electronics
  • cameras and photography equipment
  • outdoor gear and sporting goods
  • designer clothing
  • baby items
  • extra bandwidth
  • money through peer-to-peer lending platforms

And this is just a short list of the most popular items. If you have any of the assets but don’t use them regularly, then you may want to consider renting them out for profit.

2. People earn more than you might expect.

The second advantage is just how much more you can make. On average, miscellaneous household items usually rent for $10-$50 per day. Although these could bring you a few hundred dollars every month, others could earn thousands.

If you don’t believe me, consider these facts:

    • Airbnb reported the average user made an additional $924 a month.
    • HyreCar says it’s possible to make an extra $12,000 a year by renting your car.
    • Designer apparel and accessories rent for hundreds of dollars per item per week.
    • A garage usually rents for around $600 a month. A large storage space, such as my dad’s pole barn, would rent for at least twice that amount.
    • Cash loans through peer-to-peer lending platforms earn an average of 5-6% on your investment. However, crowdfunding through real estate sites like Groundfloor can yield double-digit returns.

Although every investment comes with risks, it seems this is one side hustle that may pay off.

3. Most websites provide coverage for liability and property damage.

My biggest hesitation comes down to the risks that come with renting out your assets. These were my dad’s things. While they have value to others, we still want to show them proper respect.

When you rent things out, you expect to have maintenance and general wear and tear. However, we want to keep them in working condition. And if we decide to use the property, we don’t want to be liable if anything happens.

So, I was pleased to learn that most sites provide coverage for liability and property damage to protect your assets. Some sites like FriendWithA also run background checks to ensure you are dealing with trustworthy people. With these kinds of measures in place, my family is more likely to give it a try.

4. It’s a mutually beneficial arrangement.

Many items like tools and outdoor gear are expensive to buy, especially if you only plan to use them once. Although you may be able to borrow from someone, this isn’t always a great option.

On the other hand, many people who have these items don’t use them regularly. Not only does this take up space, but you also don’t get your value from them.

So, renting your assets is a mutually beneficial arrangement for both parties. In our case, my mom gets additional monthly income and the renters get a better price than if they rented from a commercial supplier.

5. It’s easier than other side hustles.

Every day, I see people making money through delivery and ride-share services. Others are earning extra cash from second jobs and other side gigs. But, the truth is that it’s tough. The average person puts in about 13 hours a week just to supplement their primary source of income.

Although she tries, my mom just doesn’t have as much energy as she used to. And she can’t commit as much time as it would require to see significant profits. But if she could rent out things she already owns, it’s a much easier way to earn passive income. And thousands of others are already doing it.

Things to Consider Before Renting Your Assets

While this may be a solution to my family’s financial problems, there are a few things to consider before jumping in head first.

  • You need to find the right platform and make your listing as appealing as possible.
  • Consider if the items you have are valuable to other people and what they are worth.
  • If you market yourself across multiple platforms for maximum exposure, you’ll be more successful.
  • Pay attention to the legalese in rental terms and protection policies to ensure you are covered.
  • Be careful when renting to family or friends.

If you are smart and find a niche that doesn’t have much competition, there is huge potential for growth. With enough success, you may discover that reinvesting in additional equipment could be a very profitable move.

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