Tuesday, January 26, 2021

My L01 handphone selfie stick and tripod with Bluetooth shutter button

You might have awared that I am using Iruin to make use of my handphone camera as computer webcam.

This solution works pretty well. However, I found that I need a mini tripod to hold my handphone to get a better camera shooting angle, and I have found this L01 selfie stick which can also act as a tripod stand. Its price of below RM20 is very affordable.

The length of this L01 selfie stick, when folded, is only about 18.6 cm, which is very handy to carry along. It has a pretty light weight of 155 gram. It comes with a nice pouch too.

To use it as a tripod, just hold your handphone with its clamp, and unfold its 3 retractable legs.

The clamp is flexible to hold handphone of width between 5.5cm to 8.5cm, including the thickness of protective casing, if there is any.

Its length can be extended up to 70cm, by pulling out its stainless steel pole.

Obviously, you can use it as a selfie stick as well, by folding its 3 legs.

Its handphone holder is 360 degree rotatable, so you can take photo and video in portrait mode as well. 

The holder can be tilted up to 200 degree, to adjust the camera shooting angle.

This selfie stick has a handy Bluetooth shutter button, which is detachable.

The shutter button is powered by a CR1632 battery inside it, which is changeable.

To pair this Bluetooth shutter button with your handphone, just long-press it, and confirm the Bluetooth pairing in your handphone.

After pairing, you can use this button to take photo with your handphone.

The button will automatically disconnect and shutdown itself after 600 seconds of non-operation.

This L01 selfie stick is multi-functional, very easy to use, and made with pretty solid material. I like it very much.

Sunday, January 24, 2021

What to do if you need cash quickly?


Emergencies happen. Bills are due, but you don’t have sufficient funds in your account to cover them all. Unfortunately, failing to make a payment could negatively impact your credit score and result in you owing more thanks to late and various other fees.

You can try calling your respective creditors or service providers to discuss your options. What if they’re not understanding, though? You need to know how to get money in your bank account, stat, or you might lose a necessity until you can pay up.

If you’ve overdrawn your account but want to avoid the dangers of payday loans, here are a few legitimate ways to get quick cash:

Use Financial Apps

Let’s say your internet bill is due during the second half of the month, but you don’t have the money to cover it because you need to prioritize rent, water, and other necessities. Even worse, your employer’s pay cycle delays when you receive your paycheck, so you probably won’t get paid for several more days. You can’t overdraw your account, but you also don’t want to find an internet café whenever you need to get online.

You could borrow money from a friend, but there’s an easier option: use an app. One great example is Earnin, a community-driven app that enables you to receive your money after you’ve earned it. It’s more than a quick money app because those funds are rightfully yours — you can get the $65 it will take to cover your internet bill, and Earnin deducts the amount from your paycheck after it comes in. It’s not your fault the pay cycle screwed you over, after all!

Sell Your Possessions

This option isn’t fun, but you might decide it’s necessary if you’re in a tight enough spot. Selling your stuff has no upfront costs, and you get to keep 100% of the profits if you do 100% of the work.

Host a yard sale or go to a pawn shop to see how much you can get for various items (preferably those you don’t need, such as clothes and unused electronics). You can also sell possessions on apps like Letgo, Decluttr, and Poshmark, which broaden the range of customers you have access to. Some of your items may also be rentable.

Perform Odd Jobs

If you don’t want to sell your stuff and have the time to squeeze it in, sell your labor and take up “gig” work. Common ideas include driving for rideshare services, delivering food, or house (and pet) sitting. One of the advantages of side-gig work is that you can do it on your own time, can choose what you participate in, and you can do it as often or as little as you’d like.

Apps like TaskRabbit connect users to a wide range of opportunities in their local areas. Maybe someone needs help mounting a TV, assembling a piece of furniture, or cleaning their kitchen. Whatever you’re willing and able to do, performing odd jobs is a convenient way to earn quick money.

Take Out a Credit Card Advance

Despite your current situation, is your credit in decent shape? You might be able to take out a credit card cash advance. You’ll have to pay a fee and interest (unless you pay off the balance by its due date), so be careful about putting yourself in further debt unless you know your financial predicament will improve in the near future.

Request an Advance from Your Employer

On a related note, consider asking your employer for an advance on your paycheck. You will receive your salary or wages early if your employer agrees and will pay it back through payroll deduction over the next pay period. The worst your employer can do is say “no,” so it never hurts to ask.

Apply for a Loan

If you need a substantial amount of money that none of the options above will cover, then you may consider applying for a personal loan. Some lenders allow you to borrow within a day, but you’ll need good credit unless you want to be stuck with a staggeringly high interest rate.

You can use a personal loan for something clever, though: consolidating debt. Between medical bills, utilities, rent or mortgage payments, student loans, and everything else, those are lots of obligations to keep track of and associated fees to pay. This piece of advice isn’t so much to get you quick money as it is to save you future headaches, but you can roll your debts into one and make a single, consistent monthly payment.

It’s understandable if you find yourself facing difficult financial choices. You have more options than you may know, though, so consider your time, assets, debts, and other factors when you need cash quickly.

This article originally appeared on Earnin.


Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Online check your car current market value and NCD information for free

When it is able the time to renew your car insurance and road tax, you might want to check for the latest market value of your car, and also confirm its entitled No Claims Discount (NCD) percentage for the upcoming car insurance policy.

MyCarInfo website provides a reliable source for you to check for such information, for free.

You can click here to check for the current market value of a car in Malaysia, by providing the following information to do the search at the website:

  • Year manufactured
  • Make / brand
  • Model
  • Engine CC
  • Transmission type
  • Variant-series

The result shown includes:
  • National Vehicle Identification Code (NVIC)
  • Vehicle description
  • Market value
  • Valuation date

And you can click here to check for the next NCD percentage entitled to your car insurance policy, by providing the following information to do the search at the website:
  • Vehicle registration number
  • The owner's NRIC number

The result shown includes:
  • Next NCD percentage
  • Next NCD effective date
  • Current policy period of cover
  • Current NCD percentage
  • Current NCD effective date

The result shown includes:
  • Insurer
  • Type of cover
  • Policy status

With the information acquired above, you can now visit to another website called CarBase.my to estimate for your next car insurance premium amount need to be paid.

Monday, January 11, 2021

Weekly, monthly & more: How your pay schedule affects you


Photo by Vitaly Taranov on Unsplash

Let’s say you had a job as a cashier at your local grocery store that paid every two weeks. You quit that position and got a new job in an office, but this one pays once a month instead. What gives?

There are different kinds of pay schedules that determine when and how often you receive your paycheck. Businesses usually set their pay schedules to benefit themselves. Payroll management entails labor and costs, so companies will go for the option that is more convenient and saves them money. 

Employees (as opposed to freelancers) don’t normally get to decide how often they get paid, so it’s critical to factor your pay cycle into your weekly or monthly budget, especially if you live paycheck to paycheck. Will you have your money when you need it?

Here are four common types of pay schedules:

Kinds of Pay Schedules

Weekly Payroll

Some businesses pay their employees weekly, which means employees receive their income on Fridays. This schedule is more common amongst freelancers, contract workers, and trade industries like construction and manufacturing. These job types commonly have irregular hours, so it makes sense to pay workers according to a shorter time frame.

While weekly schedules are a favorite amongst employees because it means you have more regular access to your money. If you drained your bank account on bills last week because it was the end of the month but want a night out with your friends, no worries — you get paid on Friday, so you can afford that night out as long as you save enough for your upcoming expenses.

However, most businesses avoid the weekly system. Payroll vendors frequently charge money every time a company (their customer) runs payroll. Doing so weekly takes extra time to process, so companies will opt for more extended periods to reduce costs and add convenience.

Bi-Weekly Payroll

A bi-weekly pay schedule means you receive your paycheck every two weeks. This cycle amounts to 26 or 27 paydays per year. Many businesses prefer bi-weekly timelines because they save money processing payroll and can calculate overtime more easily (each paycheck accounts for approximately 80 work hours). As such, bi-weekly payroll is more common amongst businesses that pay their employees hourly.

Bi-weekly schedules are not challenging to manage, but two months out of the year will have three paydays instead of two. Accountants need to factor in these paydays when calculating voluntary employee deductions, like healthcare, which are equal in a bi-monthly pay schedule.

Bi-Monthly Payroll

Bi-monthly pay means your employer pays you twice per month, also known as semi-monthly. As such, you might receive your income on the first of and in the middle of the month (likely on the 15th), or in the middle and end. A bi-monthly pay schedule entails 24 payments per year, which makes it distinct from bi-weekly. If you earn $45,000 per year on a bi-weekly cycle, your paychecks (not accounting for taxes and deductions) will be around $1730.77 each, whereas your paychecks will equal $1,875 on a semi-monthly schedule. It’s the same amount of money but divided differently.

Bi-monthly payroll is common for salaried employees. Calculating deductions is easy for accountants, and you always know which dates you will receive your income.

Monthly Payroll

You guessed it — monthly payroll means your paycheck comes in once a month. This format is ideal for businesses because it makes accounting easy and reduces processing costs, but it’s disadvantageous for employees and contractors because they have less frequent access to their money. If you work a job that pays monthly, you need to be extra careful with budgeting because you’ll only receive your income in lump sums 12 times per year.

How Does Your Pay Schedule Affect You?

Your pay schedule does not affect how much you get paid in a year, assuming you work the same number of hours either way. However, your pay cycle does influence how often you have access to your hard-earned money, and therefore the way you budget.

For example, let’s say you paid all your bills last month and now don’t have much left in your savings. Your job pays you bi-weekly, so you’ll have enough money to pay the first round of next month’s expenses, but your next paycheck won’t arrive in time to pay the rest. Now you’re in a tight spot.

One option is to make an early paycheck request from your employer. If your employer agrees, they will provide you all or part of your paycheck before they usually would, allowing you to pay your bills, but it lengthens the time between your next paycheck.

Another option is to use financial apps. Your job’s pay cycle is out of your hands, but you can control when you get paid with apps like Earnin. Earnin allows you to take out up to $500 of your earnings per pay period. This way, you won’t have to worry about missing a bill because your employer’s pay schedule isn’t in your favor, and you won’t have to pay mandatory fees for convenience.

Your pay schedule affects your ability to pay expenses and for recreation, so it’s important to know how often you’ll receive your income when applying for a job or managing your finances. Though your pay cycle might not always work in your favor, there are ways you can control having access to your money.

Restrictions and/or third-party fees may apply, see Earnin.com/TOS for details.

This article originally appeared on Earnin.


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