March 24, 2020, 6:25 am

How To Use Your Cryptocurrency: Ways To Spend It

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Personal Finance

Bitcoin was invented as a way to disrupt the way banks and financial institutions operate. Originally, it was embraced mainly by cypherpunks, libertarians and programming enthusiasts. 

It has since become very mainstream and has been embraced by people from all walks of life, and even accepted as a form of payment by businesses. Where originally it didn’t have much of a function beyond the ideals it represented, it can now be used to actually spend on products and services.

In this article, I will go over some of the ways that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies can be used in your everyday life.

Investing and trading

Investing in a coin is as easy as it gets since it is so decentralized. All you have to do is buy BTC with credit card and then wait until you are happy with the return. You can cash it all out or leave it in a wallet to be spent as you please.

Some people like to buy it with the intention to spend it and enjoy the fact that the value can increase while it sits in your wallet.

Parking your money in Bitcoin is a good way to weather a financial storm also. If you are a currency trader, then when a certain fiat currency starts to drop, you can put it in Bitcoin because they are not so tied together. When there is a global crisis, usually all currencies drop together, though at different rates.

Buy gift cards

A way to protect your gains with Bitcoin in case of a dip that you might be worried about is to buy gift cards. They can be used as gifts or even for yourself to use in place of cash.

There are many sites online that will accept Bitcoin and issue a gift card to your favorite online store or brick and mortar. Many offer refilling by way of an app to make it as seamless as possible.

Use it for travel

One of the nicest features about Bitcoin is that it is borderless. It has the same value in any country so if you choose to use it on your travels you never have to worry about exchange rates unless you convert it into the local fiat.

Asia in particular has really embraced Bitcoin as they don’t like to use banks. This has made it easy for average people to save their money without opening a bank account. When you travel throughout Asia, you can often find businesses that accept bitcoin so you don’t have to make too many currency exchanges.

You can even use it to book your travel as many travel agents and airlines accept Bitcoin now.

Online gambling

One of the most popular ways to use Bitcoin is gambling. Since it is totally transparent, it is much safer and gives a user more trust when using it on an online gaming site. Not only that, but winnings are paid out much faster.

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March 19, 2020, 1:39 pm

5 Factors to Consider When You’re in the Market For New Residential Windows

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Personal Finance

The recent round of spring cleaning has made one thing clear: it’s time to think about replacing your home’s windows. That means you will need to start looking around for the best deals for windows Ottawa. While part of the mission involves being mindful of the cost, the best deal will also come with some other features that are at least as important. Here is how you can go about getting a truly great deal.

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

Start With a Contractor You Can Trust

You don’t consider yourself a windows expert by any stretch of the imagination. In order to find the best deal, you need help from a professional. That professional is a contractor who knows all there is to know about residential windows. That contractor also needs to be someone who is willing to help you explore all of your options.

If you find the contractor’s credentials are impeccable and that it’s easy to discuss all things related to the replacement project, there’s no need to look any further. You’ve found the right person for the job.

Discuss Options For Window Designs

Since you’re getting new windows anyway, this is the ideal time to consider different window designs instead of automatically defaulting to the same old design. The contractor can help you learn more about the benefits associated with each of those choices.

You may find that awning windows are a better choice for you. Maybe casement or sliding windows will be more convenient and look great at the same time. Perhaps you’ll ultimately decide that the same window design is actually the best choice. Whatever the outcome, it’s fun to consider all of your options.

Think About How Different Window Materials Compare

Just as you have options with window designs, it’s possible to use different materials for the windows. Wood remains popular, but many homeowner find that they like aluminum or some other metal for the windows frames and sashes. There’s also the option of going with vinyl windows that are built to last for decades.

The contractor can help you evaluate the merits associated with each of these choices. For example, vinyl will meant that you never have to paint. Metal and vinyl eliminate the potential for warping and rotting. Wood is great if you’re the type who loves to change the look of the exterior every few years, since the windows can be painted to go with your current colour scheme.

Don’t Forget to Discuss the Window Glass

Today’s standards require the use of double pane glass. That’s certainly a choice that you want to consider, but also think about going with triple pane glass. The latter provides more protection from the elements and even more control over the climate indoors. A contractor can help you compare pricing for both glass options and determine if one or both of them happen to fit into your budget.

Colours Do Matter

If you choose to go with vinyl windows, do remember that the colour is not just applied to the surface. It runs through the material, which is treated to be fade-resistant. In other words, the colour that you choose for the windows will be around for a long time.

The contractor can help you identify colours that work well with the home’s exterior walls. You’ll also get some input regarding the colours that tend to remain popular from year to year. That’s helpful, since you don’t want to end up with a colour that’s currently all the rage but will make the house look dated five or ten years from now.

Take your time and make the best choices for those new windows. Lean on the contractor for information and advice. Once the new windows are in place and you see how great they look, all that effort will prove worth it.

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March 18, 2020, 2:39 pm

What is Short Selling in Trading

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Trading

The world of stock markets, indexes, and trading is a complex one and learning about all the different terms and language used in the business of stock trading can take a while. What are bears and bulls and why do we have initial public offerings or talk about haircuts? The list of terms is a long one but one of the most talked about terms in the media and news is short selling – but what is it?

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What is Short Selling?

To put it as simply as possible, short selling is the prediction or speculation that a certain stock will go down in value and leveraging off that prediction to make some profit. By borrowing stock and selling it at the current value, hoping that it will decrease in price, so when you buy it you buy it for the lower price is short selling stock. If your prediction is correct, you’ll sell the stock for more than you have to pay for it, and the difference becomes your profit. You’ll need a CFD trading account to start short selling.

The Difference Between Short and Long Trades

The long trade is a more traditional way of creating profit in the stock market. This is when you buy stocks when you believe the value of those stocks will increase over time. It’s a long trade because you are waiting for the value of the stock to increase before you sell them. Essentially, a long trade and buying stock are interchangeable terms, because they mean much the same thing. In many ways it’s less risky than short selling, but there is still inherent risk because the price of the stock you are ‘going long’ on can decrease too.

The Risks of Short Selling

Short selling is, at its core, quite a risky way of trading. Because you are trading with ‘borrowed stocks’, you are trading with borrowed money. Usually you’ll need to provide a collateral with your broker for the practice, and that likely involves using your owned stocks as this collateral. If you predict the fall of the price of the stocks you are shorting incorrectly, you could end up losing capital. It gets more complex from here too, because you need to meet the minimum maintenance requirements and if your account isn’t able to maintain it, you might need to put in more cash or liquidate your position – a process called a margin call.

You might also experience something called a short squeeze, where a stock might rise and those short selling the stock create cover for their trades by buying their short positions back. In essence, you’ll start experiencing something of a feedback loop.

The process of shorting selling in trading is a more advanced method of stock trading and an inherent and clear understanding of trading is needed to be successful at it. Understanding what the ideal conditions are for short selling and how you know when these conditions are met or can be expected involves a good knowledge of how to trade and predict trends on the stock market.

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March 11, 2020, 9:59 am

7 Online Chat Groups to Join to Get Advice

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Blogging

The internet provides a wealth of information at our fingertips, but sometimes, it’s just better to have a real person to talk to. The internet has also made this easier than ever by linking everyone together via social media, forums, and chat rooms. Online chat has evolved greatly from the dial-up days of AOL instant messenger!

These seven online chat groups are perfect for when you need advice. Having trouble getting through the day? Not sure if you’re making the right decisions? Join one of these chat groups for advice and guidance on a daily basis.

1. Supportiv

If you’re looking for free, secure, and anonymous, this online chat service has you covered. You can easily join a room in just a few seconds, get set up with someone who’s having the same troubles or has already gone through them, and feel better about the situation the more you talk it out. Online chat rooms offer a unique opportunity to vent without the added pressure of someone sitting in front of you.

Getting answers doesn’t have to be a painful process! Join a chat room at Supportiv and get what you need and simply close your browser when you’re done. It’s that easy!

2. 7Cups

Looking for relationship advice? Depression help? General chat? 7Cups is a free service that offers several chat rooms on a variety of subjects, so no matter what you’re struggling with, advice is only a few steps away. You will need to sign up for an account with 7Cups, but the process is quick and simple, and you’ll be on your way to great advice in just a few minutes.

7Cups is a free and non-profit service, so if you like the service, send a donation!

3. Chat to a Potato

Don’t let the silly name fool you. Chat To A Potato is one of the most widely-used generalized chat services on the internet when it comes to getting advice. Everything is covered on CTAP, including but not limited to relationships, addiction, anger, break-ups, self-esteem, phobias, and more. You’ll find a massive community of thousands ready to talk about what’s bothering you.

The site has been online for about five years now and has since grown to include over 180,000 total chats, around 40,000 active users, and a dedicated YouTube channel. You can join and use the service for free, and it’s always anonymous.

4. ChatIb

This service makes the online chat process as simple as possible by requiring only a username, age, country, and state/region. Once you provided this information, you’ll be directed to a chat room and connected with the online community. One of the most striking features of ChatIb is that “adult” words such as expletives, are forbidden, and using them can get your account banned!

This helps makes ChatIb a safe chat space for anyone and everyone!

5. PeoplesProblems

This chat site is specifically aimed at helping people suffering from relationship issues. Here, you’ll find an online community with plenty of insight to help you navigate tough times in your marriage, casual or serious relationship, or even platonic relationships. Everyone needs a little help now and then!

PeoplesProblems is 100% free and anonymous, so none of your relationship issues risk being exposed or shared with people you know (or your significant other/spouse).

6. Removing Chains

Depression is a condition that is both widespread and harmful if left untreated. Removing chains is a safe and anonymous place to interact with those in the mental health community and get the advice you need to successfully navigate this complex condition. You’ll need to sign up for an account, after which you’ll be sent a welcome email so you can start chatting.

7. Therapy Tribe

This free chat resource is available for people suffering from depression, anxiety, or other mental health conditions that want to feel like they’re part of a community that cares and understands. The site has been active since 2006, and has since helped thousands of people connect and share their experiences and offer advice. Peer-to-peer support has become such an integral part of recovery, and Therapy Tribe understands that better than most.

Therapy Tribe is a bit more detail-oriented than some other services. You’ll need to create an account and give out some information to get started, but this is only to help your newfound tribe get to know you better.

The Bottom Line

Getting advice doesn’t have to be like pulling teeth. These online resources are free, anonymous, and effective. You’ll be able to connect with people who are just like you and looking for advice of their own; who knows, you might even be able to help someone out!

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February 27, 2020, 9:44 am

4 money-saving services you didn’t know could be pay-as-you-go

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Personal Finance

Did you know that British credit card owners owe, on average, £2,000 on those cards? That’s one of several eye-opening statistics from This is Money about Britons’ financial health. The site adds that clearing such debt can take two years, assuming a 17% interest rate and £100 monthly repayment.

Therefore, you should endeavour to avoid accumulating such heavy debt in the first place. However, even if you’re already deep in the red, there are various little things you can do to rein in your routine spending. Even just the following services are available on a pay-as-you-go basis.  

TV services

A while ago, you might have nonchalantly spent big on a large range of TV channels, with the cost of those included in a single, great-value package. Well, it might not look such great value if it dawns on you that you rarely watch much of the channels you have splashed out for.

Perhaps you could forgo paying for that all-in-one package – or even the BBC’s licence fee, if you never watch anything legally requiring that licence – by switching to pay-as-you-go options. Those could include streaming services, of which Netflix, Disney+ and Apple TV+ are good examples.

Photo by from Pexels

Mobile phone services

Given how indispensable a smartphone could seem to your day-to-day life, you could easily be excused for regularly upgrading your phone – and at significant expense – without a second thought. However, the conventional way of funding your smartphone habit isn’t necessarily the best way.

If you currently use a contract phone, you could be paying as much as £50 monthly to your mobile phone company, adding up to hundreds of pounds per year. However, you could switch to a non-contract phone and then use pay-as-you-go vouchers to top up your data as and when necessary.

Photo by Victor Freitas from Pexels

Gym memberships

When investigating how to save money on everyday expenses, what better site to turn to than one aimed at students? Perhaps we shouldn’t be too surprised, then, that Save the Student offers this particular pearl of wisdom: dump that costly gym membership you pay for month by month.

If you’re currently at university, it probably already offers gym facilities you can use much more cheaply. Even if your student days are behind you, it’s not hard to find pay-as-you-go gyms around the UK alone. So, you can get fit both physically and financially at the same time.

Office services

If you run your own business, you could have various costly overheads to think about. It doesn’t help that leasing a conventional office can require you to commit for 3 to 5 years, as an Entrepreneur article explains. If you’re already cash-strapped, such a big commitment can feel daunting.

Fortunately, there are other, comparatively flexible means of sourcing an office, saving you from needing to spend heavily on a contract that you could feel inclined to abandon sooner than previously expected. There are, for example, flexible workspaces in London from BE Offices, allowing you to sign just a one-month rolling contract and quit at short notice.

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