3 Things to Consider When Pawning Valuables

Would you like to make a bit of cash while clearing out the house? Are you looking for some spending money? A solution may exist. Pawning the right items can be worthwhile, helping to pay off an immediate bill. The shops often have several options: sell it to them directly or accept a loan, pay it back and reclaim your valuable. But this isn’t a garage sale venue. Not everything is going to work. The owners aren’t looking for junk. They need quick turnaround in case you can’t repay; therefore, if you hope to pick up a bit some funds, you’ll need to understand what to do and what to avoid.

1. Pick Something People Desire

Look up in the attic, scour the cabinets and check your jewelry boxes. When you consider pawning something, select something with monetary value. It should not be peculiar, broken or cheap. Instead, it should be of high-quality, attractive and popular. For example, the following are typically good choices:

  • instruments
  • historical memorabilia
  • gold or silver jewelry
  • sports cards
  • coins
  • phones
  • computers or tablets

Why these? Patrons are deal makers, entering these stores to find things they require or want (but at a better price). They are looking to fill a demand that they can’t afford (or don’t want to afford) at another big box office store. For that reason, the proprietors seek sales that can be turned around quickly.

2. Do Research Ahead of Time

You picked out your piece, but don’t race through the doors quite yet. Don’t just show up at a pawn shop ill-prepared. Do your research first. Go online, and look up information about the prospective shop and whatever you believe will garner you money. As you read up, you’ll find estimates on the value and whether this particular piece will sell well in the area. For example, are you ready to part with some of your baseball card collection? If so, you can look up the various card prices. Print the online listings, and bring them with you. With this knowledge, you can now discuss proper payment, working with shopkeepers to determine a fair price.

3. Understand the Terms

This is like going to a bank. Know the language. Ask questions. Read through documents. Once you sign the paperwork, that is finalized, and you are responsible for following through with the agreement or forfeiting your item. For example, are you accepting interest on the sale? If so, how much is it? Can you afford the upcharge? Let’s say you need 200 dollars, so you sell a family necklace. The interest is 25% each month, putting an extra 50 dollars on the tab. How do you plan to find an extra 150 at the end of the three month term? Make sure the timeline is feasible. You don’t want to lose something precious to you.

This isn’t a quick stop. You’ll need to invest some reflection and organization, but, overall, it could be very helpful when you’re in a tight spot. 

Where Can You Go for a No Credit Check Loan in Canada?

The thing about credit that most people don’t tell you is that you need credit to get credit. Not only that, but you need good credit. If you don’t have a credit history, or if your credit history is less than stellar, you may have trouble obtaining a loan. Fortunately, there’s a lender for just about every person regardless of their financial situation, meaning there is a lender out there who may be willing to loan you some cash without performing the obligatory credit check. Read on to learn more about where you can find these lenders.

Pawn Shops

If you’ve never dealt with a pawn shop before, chances are you’re under the impression that you must sell something to receive the cash. This is a common misconception. The reality is that pawnshops are in the business of holding items as collateral in exchange for cash. Though rates vary, most pawn shops will give a person between 20% and 60% of an item’s value in cash. They will then hold the item for a specified period of time, giving the owner a chance to buy back the item for the loan value, plus interest.

Payday Loans

Payday loans are short-term, high interest loans that typically trap individuals in vicious cycles of borrowing and repaying. Payday loan amounts typically don’t exceed $500, but they come with APRs of as much as 400%. If you take out a payday loan, you must repay the full loan amount, plus interest, with your next paycheck. So, not only must you pay unreasonable finance charges but also, you’re already behind financially come next payday.

Installment Loans

No credit check installment loans in Canada are the smart alternative to payday loans. These loans come with fair interest rates of between 22% and 32% and flexible repayment terms. How long you have to repay the loan depends on the amount you borrow. For instance, if you borrow $700, you will be put on a repayment plan of up to eight weeks and asked to make payments every two weeks. This type of flexibility ensures you can get the funds you need without creating an impossible financial situation for yourself in the future. Also, because installment loans require no credit check, your credit score will not be affected when you apply. You also do not run the risk of being denied a loan due to your credit score or lack of credit history.

Credit or no credit, you do have borrowing options. Do your research to find the lending solution that is best for your situation.

5 Top Countries to Relocate to

People have many reasons for moving from the United States to a foreign country: climate, politics, economics, etc. Whatever your reason for wanting to move, you may not know where you want to go. With 195 countries in the world, you have a lot of different choices. Here is a guide to help you decide where you want to make your new home.

1. Mexico

If you want to spend every day of your life at the beach, you can look for houses for sale Mexico along the coast. However, even if seaside living isn’t for you, Mexico is a vast country with a lot to offer. You’ll find a rich culture of music, theater, and art in colonial cities with attractive architecture. The cost of living in Mexico is much lower than in the United States.

2. Canada

Like Mexico, Canada is nearby, which makes a move there relatively easy. There is less chance of culture shock in moving to Canada because in many respects it is similar to the United States. Canada is very sparsely populated, so it may be a good choice for people who want to get away from crowded cities and lead the life of a relative hermit amid breathtaking natural beauty. Canadians have a reputation for kindness, tolerance, and hospitality. People who visit or live there tend to agree that the reputation is well earned.

3. Switzerland

Moving to Switzerland could make very good economic sense, depending on your situation. The cost of living in Switzerland is high, but salaries tend to match it. Switzerland could be a good choice for families; people who move there report that the schools are much better than in the U.S. The picturesque streets are safe and impeccably clean. Nestled in the Alps, Switzerland could also be a good choice for people who like outdoor activities such as hiking and skiing.

4. Singapore

People who’d like to try their luck in Asia may find Singapore a very safe bet. The city-state at the tip of the Malay Peninsula offers incredible food; secure, high-paying jobs; excellent schools; and safety. However, paradise comes at a steep price. Singapore has very strict laws; for example, chewing gum is illegal there. The penalties for breaking the laws can be very severe. If you decide to move to Singapore, be prepared to toe the line.

5. Australia

If you’d like to move as far away as possible, Australia is literally on the other side of the world. It boasts a unique natural beauty, and people who move there report that accessing it is easier than it may be in some other countries. Moving to Australia may be good for your health, as a majority of expatriates report improved wellbeing as a result.

Easy Steps to Alleviate Stress When Selling Your Home

You may have moved your household a dozen times in the past, but that doesn’t mean you have perfected the operation. In fact, most people look back on their moves and have at least one or two things they wish they had done differently. Whether you are new to the moving game or an old hat, here are some ways steps you can use to alleviate the stress you may feel when selling your home. Continue reading “Easy Steps to Alleviate Stress When Selling Your Home”

Stress Less with a Weighted Blanket From Harkla

Cellphones, social media, social pressures, and exams have been the weight of concern for my children lately. In turn, these feelings create a certain level of anxiety, stress, and can impact a good nights sleep. On the other hand, some children have natural stresses because they have special needs; autism and other sensory experiences can affect how children regulate their behaviors or emotions. For years, occupational therapists have been helping children and adults stress less with a weighted blanket.

We have been on the hunt for the perfect weighted blanket for our kids, as this was their holiday gift request, and we have definitely found it! Part of our Florida lifestyle is that we have been so much more relaxed. Just minutes from the beach, the theme parks and the abundance of outdoor living, our family has been exploring ways to de-stress in various ways. We have normal stressors, yet we have tried to not let the small stuff weigh us down, pardon the pun. However, sometimes normal stressors can impact, even seasonal stressors like the holidays can impact sleep and overall wellness.

This past year my sleep has been a mess. A horrible mess. The Chad and I chalked it up to our aging bed and we bought this incredible Tempurpedic. However, before the bed purchase, I was still struggling for sleep. Being that he wanted me to sleep well, he purchased a weighted blanket. Our first night was amazing, I slept like a baby, but the subsequent nights were hot flashes, sweating and every attempt to get comfortable. So after 30 nights we kicked the blanket. I just could not find my sleep despite the level of comfort it brought for my restless legs from weightlifting and my daily stressors.

Do Weighted Blankets Actually Work?

Was it the blanket though that was not helping my sleep? Was it the weight? Was it my bed? So many questions, so many variables. I couldn’t just give up on the blanket. I decided to investigate if there was really any truth to how weighted blankets work and if they truly do help to stress less by easing you into, and keeping you, asleep.

In 2008, a research study was conducted with adult participants and the findings concluded, that basically, weighted blankets are safe to use. The initial findings were that emotional arousal was reduced by the use of the blankets, however, this was only after five minutes of use. Not five hours or more as one might experience during a full nights sleep.

A few other studies – a few years later – proved fruitless as well, using placebo blankets to help further the study. Those findings concluded that sleep was not impacted by the participants, children, and most importantly, children with autism. So where is the proof these blankets work if the research is indicating otherwise?

In the 1990s Temple Grandin, world renowned researcher and a person who also has autism, conducted research studies regarding “hug machines.” Her first studies were with college students that found that the deep touch helped 60% of participants feel more relaxed. Yet, it was the study done in 1999 that was published in the American Journal of Occupational Therapy that found that 12 children with autism all received some benefit from her “hug machine” experiment.

The findings of the 12 children were that five used the machine, continuously applying pressure, while the other seven rested in the machine. What is the hug machine exactly? Built of pads, the user can pull a lever applying deep-pressure touch to the body. The user has total control over the weight and amount of application within the “hug machine.” So while the results are absolutely conclusive, varying studies have shown some applicable reduction in stress, but most importantly is about personal preference.

Which Weighted Blanket and Why?

For the last several years weighted blankets have exploded all over the market and internet. From craft DIY’s to blankets touting metal for better grounding (which we don’t recommend due to the lead possibility), everyone is all about stress less with a weighted blanket. With so many to choose from, which weighted blanket is the best and why?

After much research we found the team at Harkla and their incredible product line of weighted blankets and other sensory experience products. Why did we choose them and why their products? The team at Harkla has first hand experience with sensory issues in children, backed by educators and science to create products that ease stressors in our children’s lives. Think about your new born child and how at ease they felt when swaddled or having the pressure of your hand on them as they were soothed to sleep.

Blanket Weight suggestion based on age and body weight of individuals.

Using this same theory – backed with applicable use by occupational therapists – applying deep-pressure touch helps to desensitize and calm children with sensory processing disorders, as well as children who may struggle with anxiety or the ability to self-calm. With that, weight is a tremendous factor and should only be used in older children, never with infants. Blankets come with a variety of weights that are evenly disbursed and are based upon individual body weight, and of course, preference. Some adults and children have found less weight or even more weight to be beneficial.

Perfect for Teens

Instead of returning our blanket we opted to let Big G try it out. Needless to say, the blanket has never been returned to the store and is – instead – with it’s intended rightful owner. Weighted blankets are perfect for teens! Riddled with hormones and hormonal driven anxiety, married with all the minutiae high school can bring, teens can stress less with a weighted blanket.

weighted blanket, teen weighted blanket, teen stress

Experts have explained that the “deep pressure” feeling generated by a weighted blanket helps to release both serotonin and dopamine to help people feel more relaxed. While the feeling isn’t like a death weight; weighted blankets provide a nice, even, easy to the touch feeling over the entire body to put it to rest. Hence why hugs have that calm feeling as the soft, easy touch can ease feelings of tension, fear, and general upset.

Perfect for Tweens

At the genesis of true teenage years, Tweens are beginning the hormonal process. I see my twins rage or cry over absolutely nothing and everything. They are in the first year of middle school and are navigating multiple classes, exams and early peer pressures. While they both manage to handle stress fairly well, I can tell that they still lean on one another for comfort. By that, I mean they still will crawl into bed with the other while sleeping. Simulating that inherent twin feeling from when they were infants.

My initial thoughts were that this could be a problem, interrupting one another’s sleep in order to find that soothing comfort. Even though I have been a mom for 17 years, I am still figuring this whole gig out most days, especially when my twins are involved. They are a unique breed of people, so vastly different, yet very similar. I do not want to interfere with the connection the two of them have and will willingly foster the healthy coping mechanisms they have as children.

So we explored the weighted blanket route with them as well with Harkla. Our goal was to have them stress less, find a good nights sleep and find comfort, either individually or together. When we put it together I had to have them both try how they could feel together with the weight and individually. They both were at ease, yet smiling ear to ear, full of excitement to feel the swaddling and “deep-pressure” touch they felt as infants and toddlers.

The weight was perfect for their togetherness and individuality. At only 15lbs, they could easily lift up from underneath the blanket, but still benefit from the additional gravity being applied to their bodies. Now the two of them have negotiated who sleeps under the blanket on any given night, with the opportunity of the other crawling in bed for the cuddling feeling. Looks like we will be investing in a second to ensure a future argument doesn’t erupt.

If you’re looking for the perfect gift this year, weighted blankets are at the top of the list. With the amount of stresses in people’s lives these days, we are always looking for ways to reduce stress and tap into more natural ways to relax. More so, the abundance of benefits to the special needs community for those with sensory disorders to help stress less as well. Whether you are an adult with anxiety or sensory disorders or have a child or children with sensory or spectrum disorders, a weighted blanket might be just the perfect gift.

I Googled Mom

At the dinner table the other night my youngest children began to tell me about how they were looking for images to use as their school email avatar. Realizing how quickly my children have advanced in this age of technology, I was proud and amused at the same time. Until they mentioned how they wanted a particular picture and the method in which they obtained the image online. I Googled Mom, they said.

Continue reading “I Googled Mom”