Trading is just about the simplest form of business you can ever start. You
buy something, you sell it for more than you paid, you make a profit.
Any car trader worth his salt will tell you that the key to making money in that business isn’t selling…it’s
buying. Buy the right thing at the right price, and selling is easy. But pay too much, and no amount of sales
talk will retrieve the situation.
How do you ensure that you ‘buy right’ to guarantee making a profit in a trading business? Simply use good old
fashioned supply and demand dynamics . Buy when others are selling, and then sell when others want to buy. As I
look out of the window today, it isn’t a good day to be buying a stock of snow shovels. I should have been doing
that in July when the sun was cracking the pavements. Today would be a good day for buying electric fans,
sunglasses and open top sports cars –stuff like that.
Today would not be a good day for buying christmas related items either. I should have done that in January or
February. Today is a day for looking into purchasing non-perishable Halloween and bonfire night related items.
This may seem obvious, but so many folk who attempt to make money by trading, almost literally blow with the wind,
and attempt to react to what’s happening now. What’s required though, is a little forward planning. There are
risks attached, but they aren’t massive ones. We know the seasons will change…we know that certain events
happen every year. You don’t need to be Nostradamus to know that it will be Valentines Day in February, Easter in
April, and a lot of people will want cooling down sometime between June and August.
Trading isn’t hard,. Buy cheap, sell for more...make a profit. Planning in advance is the simplest way to make this
work for you.
If you’re buying charity cards for Christmas, do be aware that some
card sellers hand over more cash to charity than others. A new report from the Charities Advisory Trust
reveals that, for example, Cards Galore pass on just 4.2 per cent of the cover price.
Debenhams and Marks & Spencer both donate 20 per cent of the price to charities such as the NSPCC and Shelter.
At the top end of the range, Card Aid shops give all profits to charity which works out at about 60 per cent of the
card price. The good news is that these cards must have the donation stated on the back so you can easily check for
yourself to see what’s what.
If you know a local charity, you can also go direct to see if they have their own cards you can buy where profits
go direct to them. For example, you could buy cards for Martin House, the hospice for young children in Yorkshire,
UK Banks are being forced to repay millions of pounds to their
customers each month. Unfortunately most people will miss out on the hard cash repayments that they are
entitled to. Don't be one of the unlucky ones who miss out on this.
Creative Guerilla Marketing
Once again one of our favourite websites - BoredPanda.com has come up with a selection of very interesting
marketing advertisements. Take a look a look at the link below for some great ideas.
Lots of interest in garages following last week’s mention of a garage in Essex selling at three times its guide
price at auction. Here’s the lowdown. Go to the built-up, urban area on the edge of a city near you, somewhere
that’s full of narrow streets and Victorian terraced properties. You’ll know somewhere close to you, most
The supply of garages is severely limited – they’re few and far between. Home-owners with a decent car and a people
carrier will pay top whack to rent or buy somewhere to keep those vehicles safe and close by. So too will
commuters, as appropriate.
Short supply, high demand – and prices are at a premium. The same basic garage is near worthless as an investment
on a rural housing estate and pretty much priceless on the edges of that city. What you’ve got to do is to find
yourself a garage in a short-supply, rising-demand scenario and that pretty much means city centres across the
‘Location, Location, Location’
Just as you would with a flat or house, you need to walk the streets and soak up the know-how - looking at garages,
streets, street parking, bus routes, bus stops, bus stations, car parks, main routes in and out of the city, taxi
ranks, railway stations etc – anything that has any sort of influence at all on supply and demand. You’d do it if
you were investing in a buy-to-let, so do it for a garage too.
Talk as well to anyone who’ll give you a minute or two of their time – agents, bus drivers, taxi drivers; anyone
who might tell you something you didn’t know. Maybe teenagers hang out round those garages at night with;
off-putting when someone pulls up at night to park their Mercedes in your garage.
Go for one garage to start with – it’s much easier to buy and at a lower per-garage price than a parade which will
often attract the attentions of a developer. And your lone garage – in the middle of a parade – may attract a
premium price sometime down the line if a developer moves in with plans for a mews development there.
Points To Ponder
Approach your purchase as you would a buy-to-let property investment, looking for both an income stream from your
immediate investment and capital appreciation in due course. Do not tie yourself into a long-term income stream
though. If congestion charges are brought in and/or rail links have been completed, demand should rise – and rents
Consider security and associated costs. To rent and re-sell, you must offer secure off-road parking. No-one’s going
to leave their Mercedes in a garage with a lock that can be flipped opened with a rusty fork. Likewise, think about
insurance - higher than if you lived in an adjoining property.
Take legal advice as you would for any other property purchase. Check the title deeds to see if there are any
restrictions on usage. Sub-letting can be a big no-no in some instances - find that out before you hand over your
Property auctions are a great place for buying garages. Parades tend to go to the big London auctioneers. Single
garages tend to stay local. Sign up to Property Auction News to source garages at auction; email back for details
of the newsletter.