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Now may be the best time and Canada the best place to launch a home-based business. Thanks to the Internet and modern technology anyone anywhere has the potential to reach a global market – all you need is the right product or service and an unwavering belief that you can make it work. Here are a few ideas for home-based businesses that have proven not merely possible, but downright successful! • Selling Home-Made Items: If you’re artistic or a craftsperson, then launching a business makes perfect sense, as customers everywhere love the uniqueness and quality that handmade products provide. Things people are selling include jewellery and other forms of art, homemade food items (often at venues such as farmer’s markets), hand-made clothing and even wooden furniture and toys. • A Drop Shipping Business: Drop shipping is a venture that usually works in concert with online stores or ecommerce enterprises. Essentially the customer, who could be located anywhere in the world, will make a purchase and send their purchase order to the drop shipper who in turn passes the order to the business owner. The drop shipper partners with the supplier who manages the inventory and ships the products to the end user on the seller’s behalf. No inventory need be held or stored by the seller. • Freelance Writer / Educator: A very popular type of home based business, and a type requiring very little in the way of infrastructure or equipment, is that of a freelance writer or other creative producer. Today a computer and an Internet connection is all that’s required to reach an audience located anywhere on the globe. An offshoot of this is the production of online courses or other educational material. There are a wide range of ideas available for today’s entrepreneurs. Imagination and desire to do the job are keys to any success. Why not explore this exciting concept for yourself?

ENERGY SAVING TIPS TO HELP YOUR FAMILY BUDGET Running a household is never a simple or inexpensive thing, and energy costs are one of the largest bills a homeowner must contend with. Finding ways to stretch those energy dollars is important, so to help achieve that goal here are a few simple tips to help save both money and energy. Bundle Up: While it may seem like an obvious idea, energy and money can be saved by keeping a household thermostat below 20º Celsius and simply putting on a sweater to ward off the morning chill. Many say putting on extra clothing is healthier than cranking up the furnace, so why not give it a try? Ceiling Fans: Did you realize the direction a ceiling fan turns should reflect the time of year it’s in operation? During summer the spinning blades should be used to draw the heat away from the living spaces, while in winter a reverse rotation will push the warmer air (as heat rises) into the room to aid with heating. Ongoing Maintenance: Like with any mechanical system a furnace needs to be properly maintained to work at it's peak efficiency. A furnace filter choked with dust will not work as well as a clear one. These are just a few ideas, do some research of your own and learn how you can help stay warm and save money.

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