A business I can get behind

So I finally decided that I’m going to open a small online store selling things that would be useful in the dorm rooms. I’m working on a list of items right now, and now I need to find vendors. This will not be fun, but it’s necessary. I figure the people I’m targeting with this blog would be likely to buy some of these things, and since I’ll be going for low margin high turnover (VERY risky for a small business) I’ll need to get word out. However, with low overhead, I won’t be out too fast if it fails, since I’m not paying any sort of monthly fee. My goal is to make $5 in the first month, $20 in the second month, and $60 in the third. I think this is all plausible, and that’s profit numbers.

Any tips? Anyone out there know a good way to find vendors. I know Neville from his financial blog has houseofrave.com and he doesn’t even keep most of that stuff in stock, just handles the orders. Maybe I’ll try to ask him how he got his vendors in line. Ha, he runs one of the most popular financial blogs out there, and I want him to answer my question…think he’ll respond.

Well that’s all for now, just wanted to let everyone know what I’m up to. Short one. Hopefully next time I post I’ll have some sort of store going.

I’m all moved in

Well, I’m all moved in, wired up, and ready to go. I still need to get printer paper, I didn’t think I needed it, but I do. That’s easily remedied though. I like the setup of our room, and getting up to the loft is more doable, since I’m in better shape (and 40-50 pounds lighter) than I was at the beginning of last year.

Early night last night, I was incredibly tired, probably from shopping all day. Went to bed about 1:30 ish, so it wasn’t too bad. There was a concert going on across the street from my dorm, so I was able to listen to some music too by just opening my window.

Big news, my family apparently has started talking about going on a cruise for my grandma’s 80th…that would be so much fun. You’re basically 21 when you’re on a cruise, gambling and drinking. A-Woo-Hoo!

It’s about time to start the business ventures up. I think I’ll start with a small online store selling “The Day You Were Born” certificates. It should be simple to set up; $8 for the domain and that’s about it. I’ll type more later, this was just a quick blog to get everyone caught up.

Roommate, part 2, plus much much more

My roommate seems like he’ll be really cool. I checked out his facebook, and he likes most of the same shows I do, and quite a few of the same bands. We’re pretty similar. He’s also pretty chill, which is good, and it means he’ll probably be laid back a bout these little money making experiments.

I just today changed my schedule, instead of taking Financial Bank and Money Markets, I’m taking racquetball I. I want to take the Econ class, but I looked up the professor, and he has a crazy hard curve. This way, I have 12 credits, which means easier 4.0, and I save like $600 when you factor in the book I don’t have to buy. I’m pretty excited about this, it means I will be starting every morning Monday-Thursday with exercise…awesome!

I go back the 23rd, and move in the 24th. I’m pretty psyched because my grandma is making my mom and I food on Thursday…WOOT! I love the breaded chicken, I can’t freaking wait. I’ll miss my friends here, but it’s time to go back. Hopefully all my friends stay friends while I’m gone, so I don’t have to split myself up between them…I also need to find a way to start making money soon. I’m gonna spend around $1500 on school fees/expenses I think, just when I get back.

My Professor I’m working with on research already contacted me so we can make a time to meet and start working again. I think it was easier when we hadn’t made contact yet last year, and I got paid for august for doing nothing 🙂 I guess I don’t get that luxury this year. I get paid the 15th, plus I still have like $100 from my summer job at LISD, which NEEDS to hit my account soon.

Anyway, I’ve kept you for a while, so I’ll be gone.

My roommate

So MSU made a little mistake. The kid I was gonna room with (Phil) is going to Cornell instead of MSU. We signed up to room together, and when he dis-enrolled from the school they said it would be terminated, but it wasn’t. However, he called, and it’s been fixed; I was already assigned a new roommate. Hopefully he’s a tolerant kid.

I sent him a quick e-mail, but he hasn’t responded…maybe he doesn’t know to check his new MSU e-mail address? Any suggestions on that? Anyway, thought I would say that, I’m pretty excited to figure out what this kid is about.

I also found out how to make my website work with www.dormroombiz.com as well as dormroombiz.com (That’s with and without the www)

PS: If you need advice on how to do this if you have a blog and use godaddy, send me a message, I know it was very difficult for me to figure out.

e-Bay Forex Arbritage

I noticed something recently when trying to figure out a way to make money on e-bay. It’s another idea that requires some capital, but it looks to have fairly consistent gains.

When I was coming home from Austria/Italy last year on a choir trip, I looked on e-bay to see if maybe people on e-bay would pay more than the exchange rate I could get anywhere else (and with astronomically lower fees). I discovered that they did purchase euros for about $0.05 more per euro than at the services. This number varied based on the denomination. Unfortunately, I used all my Euros to buy chocolate and other duty free items.

I have thought about this for some time, and have looked again, only to find that e-Bay buyers are willing to pay about $1.43 per euro, whereas the accepted change rate was only $1.37 at the time I checked it. So…if you found some low commmission currency converters, you could theoretically make a pretty penny selling euros on e-Bay.

One tip I would have is to charge a handling charge; you will have to go to the post office to buy insurance, you need to go to your currency conversion agency to get the currency, and you have to put up some currency to start. I would suggest getting the Euros in fives, and then charge around $1-$2 more than shipping for a handling charge. This way, you will likely make up your money you pay in commission fees.

I want to try this, but I can’t do that until I have all my fees paid for fall semester. I’m looking at about $2000 in fees/books after all my scholarships are used. I should be able to do this, with about forty-seven cents left over for other things.

Sorry it’s been so long

So it has been a very long time since I’ve posted, and for this I apologize. I’ve been busy with work, and putting my room back together (I just painted it and moved everything around) I do have a few things to say though.

Experiment 1 is taking a little break until I can work up some capital to do everything necessary. I was thinking I might just wait until I get back into the dorm, since this is Dorm Room Business. I also tried another money making idea. It was obscure, but fun…and ultimately unsuccessful.

I went to a gas station locally with a “quarters” game with the slides that push quarters over the edge, with $25 in quarters. There were various prizes, including a $20 bill and a $50 bill (plus smaller denominations) on the quarters. I was not, however successful in winning either of these, although I came quite close to the $20, probably another $5 and I would have had it. Either way, this was probably a stupid idea, but it game me and my friend about 2 hours of fun, so it wasn’t a total loss. I also won a girls watch…that’s useless, but I won something 🙂

I’ll admit, so far, my ideas have resembled gambling, and I need to get more solid ideas running; I don’t however feel like doing this before I get back to the dorms. I get back the 27th of August, I leave to go back to Michigan on the 23rd, and hopefully I will have a cool roommate (I’m staying in the dorms, and my roommate request decided to transfer to Cornell)

My job ends on Thursday, which means my steady income is done, so I need to find a better way of making money. I start my job as soon as I get back to school, which is good. I need income.

One thing I want to buy when get the money is the AT&T 8525, which in my opinion is better than the iPhone. Someone at the AT&T store told me she thinks a lot of the iPhone ideas came from the 8525. It works on 3G, which is faster, has windows mobile, and a full keyboard that’s easy to type on. The data plan is $40 a month. I figure I can afford $30 a month with my current income, which means if I can raise it by $10, I can safely do it. Any thoughts?

Good Day.

Experiment 2: Can you make money on Lottery Tickets?

This one was for 7-7-07. I’m still working on Experiment 1, but I was reading Neville’s Financial Blog (www.nevblog.com) and I saw an experiment he had http://www.nevblog.com/lottery-experiment-an-itch-to-scratch/

I decided to try my own experiment in honor of the date. I went to a local grocery store and purchased one type of lottery ticket, all at this one business. I spent $53 on one type of $1 ticket alone.

I also bought a “7-7-07” ticket, just because I had to. I then purchased one each of the other $1 games, and 3 other $5 games. I scratched off all the tickets, and just as Neville indicated, it is not as much fun to scratch off all these tickets as you would think. Before midnight struck, I finished scratching all the tickets. I won mostly $1 prizes, with the big winner being $10. I was disappointed; a few of my friends did this with me and the rule was: if any of us hit it big and won $1000+ they would pay the others to make them even for the day.So in the end, I spent $77 on lottery tickets on 7-7-07. Gotta be lucky right? Wrong. I ended up winning $32 back from the money, which was ok because I was ready to lose all $77.

So when all was said and done, I spent $45 on entertainment. Since we did this in lieu of going to the track to bet on horses, or the casino, I consider this a win. I will get $32 back; if I had gone to one of those places, I probably would have lost all $77, since the $32 would have been regambled.$1 Winners:12
$5 Winners:2
$10 Winners:1
Total Winnings:$32
Total Spent: $77
Win/Loss: -$45
Entertainment Cost:$45
Net Gain/Loss:$0

Ok, so that might be stretching it, but the first numbers are right. Here’s my conclusion: You can do this experiment, and unless you get lucky, you will lose about 3 dollars of every 4 spent. If it’s worth it, do it, if you feel lucky, go for it. I was just doing this because I couldn’t make it to the casino or track.

By the way, I was told by my friend who used to cash lotto tickets “Scratch off the ticket to show the little box with four numbers in it, it makes it easier and faster for the cashier to cash it”

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Saving Money in College 1: You don’t need to eat so much food!!!

I’m a big guy. I weigh around 350 pounds, but I used to weigh above 400 pounds; I have actually lost weight in college, which spits in the face of the “freshman 15”. One of the reasons I lost this weight is that I chose to walk everywhere for classes, another is I realized I don’t need to eat so much…at least I don’t need to buy so much food. I had friends who purchased boatloads of food; mac ‘n’ cheese, popcorn, chips, pizza, etc. They were also broke all year. I did this too at first, but eventually I realized I could live life without all the food.

I stopped buying popcorn, chips, pizza, easy mac, burgers, I would buy a few snack foods, and then sneak food out of the cafeteria. I made a small investment in some disposable Tupperware and used them to sneak fries, chips, burgers, anything I thought would be good leftover out of the cafeteria. I kept track of my finances before that, and I was spending $150-$200 on food each month. By doing this, I saved around $100-$150 per month. I still spent some money, but I saved tons of money. Imagine making $100. That’s basically what I did, was increase my spending power by $100.

I had friends who refused to do this, even after I told them about how effective this was. There’s nothing wrong with that; they did have more flexibility in the food they ate, but they also spent much more money than I did.

At Michigan State they don’t feed you on Sunday’s for dinner (they will this upcoming year, but last year they did not) so we had to figure out dinners on our own. I either took some foods that would be good heated up in the microwave (burgers, hot dogs, etc.) and saved them for Sunday evening. Sandwiches were particularly good, as I could make them on Sunday at lunch, wrap them up, and eat it for dinner. I saved about $10-$15 each Sunday night by not buying dinner and having delivered.

Just remember, if there’s something you really want to buy, then buy it, eat it, and enjoy it. If you don’t truly want something, you don’t need to buy it. Every time you don’t buy something, you save money. Every time you save money, you increase your spending power by that amount. That is the exact same as earning money, it’s that simple (or, in other words: A penny saved is a penny earned)

Experiment 1: How to make a million dollars

For a few weeks, while I’m home, I’ll be doing this blog from my room, but with the same constrictions as a dorm room. My room at home is basically a dorm room anyway. Even though ideally the ideas can transcend the dorm room/apartment, the goal of the blog is to find ways to make money in the dorm.

Idea: Place classified ads in paper/flyer’s around town that offer the secret for earning a million dollars. The cost of this information is $1. This money may be mailed to me or paypal may be used.

Execution: I’ll need to find some newspapers to place my ads in. This is going to cost something, but not much. Ideally I’ll find some papers with free classified ads. I would also like to set up a website for this, to make it look more official. Something along the lines of “makeamilliondollars” or something like that.

How it works: So when I get the dollar, they get the information…place an ad somewhere telling people to send one dollar for information on making a million dollars. Then get a million people to do it.

Variations: This could work with flyer’s, classified ads, and maybe even places like e-bay.