Monthly Archives: January 2013

A Look at the Increasing Demand for Second Hand Cars

A Look at the Increasing Demand For Second Hand Cars

If you are on a budget you will most definitely have to choose between second hand cars. Don’t despair, even though facing the impossibility of buying a new car may be disappointing, but realizing that our needs can be met by buying a good used car can be as equally cathartic. In less than half price you can buy a used car three, four or five years old which is larger, has better equipment and specifications as for the similar price, or even slightly higher, you could get a smaller, and poorly equipped new car. But, buying a used car comes with certain risks, since you are buying a car that someone else owned and drove, so it is important to check the condition of the car before the purchase, whether or not, and how, it was serviced. One of the biggest advantages in buying a used car is choosing a product to which many have different experiences; they met all of its advantages as well as disadvantages that are no longer a secret neither to the drivers nor the mechanics.

First of all you have a lot more to choose from, for example in 2006 about 16,5 million new cars were sold, but in that same year around 42,5 million used cars found new owners and a sole reason for this are the increase of choice and very attractive prices. Even though used cars typically don’t have the same warranties as the new ones, original factory warranty of a new car is transferrable to a second owner, usually at no charge. By buying a car from a licensed dealer you can purchase a late model with the original warranty.

As good as new – another thing that works in the favor of buying a second hand car is an extension of warranty for used cars. The idea was started with luxury brands, such as Lexus and Mercedes-Benz, and became a very popular alternative to buyers. Keep in mind that as soon as you drive off the new car from the salon its value decreases for about ten to twenty percent which is not the case with used cars. Look for a car that doesn’t have a lot of mileage and is in good condition, they don’t require a lot of service and are much cheaper than new ones. For example, buying a used midsize car could save even more than fifty percent compared to the price of a new car.

So, people who want the most for the money they have, and money is of the essence, have a great chance in finding their perfect car by buying a used one and for a lot less money, so it is no wonder there is an increase in demand for second hand cars.

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Why Asking For A Raise Isn’t The Taboo You Might Think It Is

asking a pay raisePlenty of employees think they deserve a bigger paycheck, but they are not sure how to ask for a raise. Asking for a salary increase can be a real challenge and you have to know that asking for a raise doesn’t mean that you’ll get one. Worse than asking is not asking at all and waiting for your boss to reward you. You can ask for a wage hike and possibly get one in every environment, even those where money doesn’t grow on trees. Always have in mind that even a small raise is better than none.

Begin your quest for a bigger salary by proper preparation. Your homework is to find out how much other workers in similar positions are earning. Check out salary comparison websites and learn the worth of your job. Every particular job has its price, just like every article in the store has a selling price. Furthermore, you have to compare responsibilities because the same title can hold different meanings at different companies. Determine how much you can earn due to number of years working for your current employer.

When this is done, research the financial health of your company. Check any available information about company’s pay practices on website. Also, good idea is to consult your HR manager about the pay range for you position. If given information shows your employer is having financial difficulties, maybe it is not the right time to ask for a raise. Timing can be a crucial factor. If your employer had a bad quarter, the boss will be distracted and you’ll talk in vain. Perfect timing for asking would be after a successful ending of the big project.

Your argument must include a list of all the things you’ve done for the company. Consider asking for a raise as selling yourself, not begging. Put on the paper all positive and significant results you have achieved. Remember that you will get raise only if your skills and attitude are valuable to the company. Your boss won’t be interested if your sad story is the only thing you put on the table.

While presenting your case to the boss, don’t be aggressive, and use your style and good manners. Be realistic about raise because every place in company has a maximum worth. Employer will not pay manager’s salary to a receptionist. Have confidence and never ask for a raise if you don’t truly believe that you deserve one.

If you believe that you are worth it, bite the bullet and just ask for more money. Avoid discussing your raise with the boss in an e-mail or by telephone. Treat your issue as a business meeting. In a case you get turn down, ask your boss politely what it would take to merit an increase. Continue your work and don’t refuse additional duties because you didn’t get bigger paycheck. If your company values you highly, eventually you will get a raise. On the other hand, you can always try to find another job with a higher salary.

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How To Avoid Used Car Scams

Used Car Scams And How To Avoid Them

used car scams

As most of us know, buying a used car can help you save money on your purchase. However, a big disadvantage of buying a second- hand car is that you are morevulnerable to scams. Unscrupulous car sellers perform scams which can cost you more than $1,000. The number of used car scams is rising a year after year. Here are some tips to avoid being part of them.

One of the first things when buying a used car is checking the car’s history. Vehicle’s service history should give you important information including performance, repairs or other problems. One of the mostly used car scams is odometer rollback. You should know that average mileage per year is 9,000 to 12,000 miles. If odometer mileage seems too low for vehicle’s age, it’s red alert. Be very careful and keep your eyes wide open. If a vehicle has mechanical odometer, check the numbers well. Digits should be in one straight line. Look for any scratches on the glass or fingerprints under it.


Scratches and loose screws on the dashboard may be a signal for odometer manipulation. Take a car for the test ride to see if the speedometer will stick. When it comes to electronic odometer, you can use some of the computer programs to check if there are any odometer alterations.

Next thing on the check list is the condition of the interior. Check the seats for any stains, rips, tears or other types of damage. Look for any stickers under the hood that can show that the car had major services.

used car scam

As you already know, buying a used car from a dealer is different from buying from a private seller. Except for selling you the car, a private owner has no other obligations toward you or the car. That is why some used car dealers pose as a private seller. Some greedy dealer can charge a “cottage fee” of $200 for the preparation and paperwork. That is a pure rip off so read purchase agreement carefully before you sign it.

Although your desired car looks as good as new, it is a good idea to spend around $100 for professional mechanic inspection. You don’t want to save hundred bucks and wind up with a car made by welding halves of two other cars.

Be cautious when a dealership offers you extended warranty. Remember that there is no better warranty than the original coverage of the new car.

You should be aware that the money scam is going on the moment the seller starts convincing you to take the car home immediately leaving him finish the financing papers. A few days later, they will call you to come back to sign another contract because the initial deal fell through. Normally, new financing deal will be much more expensive.

If a car you like has a price that seems too good to be true, always do some internet research. If the price is much lower than average, don’t believe in any of the seller’s stories. It is probably a scam.

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Top 20 Things To Do in Lebanon

What are the Top 20 things to do in Lebanon?

Top 20 things to do in LebanonSituated in the crossroad of three continents, with Mediterranean coast on one, and snowy mountains on the other side, Lebanon has always been unique and unforgettable country. Urban neighborhoods, historical sites, breath-taking nature, and the mix of cultures are only some of the reasons that make Lebanon one of the world’s most desirable travel destinations. Here is our pick of places to visit.

1. Temples of Baalbek, Bekaa Valley, Baalbeck – Located on the south west of the Anti-Lebanon mountains, these colossal ruins of Phoenician and Greco-Roman architecture used to be a sanctuary visited by pilgrims, and today they are one of the most famous tourist attractions. Be sure to visit the remarkable Temple of Jupiter and its 20 meters high columns.

2. Jeita Grotto, Beirut – A fascinating limestone cave system 20 kilometers north of Beirut will take your breath away with its strikingly beautiful nature-made decorations. In the upper gallery you can see the world’s largest stalactite and then take a boat ride to the lower gallery.

3. Beiteddine Palace, near Deir el-Qamar – Built in the end of the 18th century by emir Bashir Chehab II, this grand palace looks as if it came from 1001 night. Gorgeous garden, small museums, fountains and the collection of Byzantine mosaics are a good reason to visit this spectacular place.

4. National Museum of Beirut – Built in the 1930s, this small but beautiful museum houses a large collection of antiquities and artifacts like sarcophagi, mosaics, jewelry, coins, an ceramics. Thanks only to the staff efforts the collection was not destroyed during the Civil war.

5. Downtown Beirut – Once a popular city center, the Downtown Beirut, also known as Solidere, is now a high end district with numerous shopping malls, restaurants and cafes. Its great pedestrian routes with beautiful architecture, churches, and mosques fit into the description “Paris of the East”.

6. The Corniche, Beirut – This favorite promenade spot starts at Ras Beirut and ends at the St George Yacht Motor Club. Here you can see relaxed people chatting with their friends over a coffee and nargileh. You can play backgammon or buy hot nuts and corn from the street vendors while enjoying the warm atmosphere that typifies this district.

7. American University of Beirut – In the green and peaceful campus of this Middle East’s prestigious educational center you’ll always find chatty students and teachers speaking both English and Arabic. Its archeological museum is the third oldest museum in the Middle East, it is open to the public and free of charge.

8. Gemmayzeh Street, Beirut – The trendy neighborhood also called Vegas of the Middle East or Soho of Beirut is packed with more than 100 cafes, bars and clubs that open mostly in the evenings and late at night. There’s a saying “What happens in Gemmayzeh, stays in Gemmayzeh” because visitors from the surrounding more conservative areas come here to yield to their desires.

9. Souqs, Sidon – In the labyrinth of passages you’ll find shops, kiosks and cafes that have been trading like this for centuries. From these tiny market stalls you can buy everything from the tasty Arabic dishes to the orange and rose water, homemade soaps and wood workings.

10. Chateau Montagne, Aindarah, Mount Lebanon – A beautiful hilltop castle with a magnificent panoramic view was built some 50 years ago with intention to become the most beautiful castle in the world. Although today it’s mostly used for weddings and other celebrations, it would be a shame not to visit its luscious green gardens and landscape.

11. Qadisha (Kadisha) Valley – Fifty monasteries embraced between two cliffs in a river valley will bring inner peace to all its visitors, religious or not. It’s a beautiful hiking spot with waterfalls, forests, brooks, and incredible views, but there’s also the grotto of the mad where mad people were put in irons in hope that St. Anthony would help them get better.

12. Deir Qannoubine, Bcharre – Five hour long walk from Diman up through the valley will bring you to the amazing monastery from the 15th century. The monastery, half built into a rock, is decorated with beautiful frescoes worth the trek.

13. Taynal Mosque, Tripoli – The mosque was constructed in the 14th century and is said to be the most beautiful mosque in Lebanon. Its magnificent entrance, two harems and five domes make this mosque one of the finest examples of Mamluk architecture.

14. The Crusader Castle, Byblos – The castle was built in the 12th century by Fulk, King of Jerusalem. The history behind the castle is amazing, so is the view over the harbor.

15. Byblos Segway Tours – Experience ancient and charming city of Byblos in a different way. Glide around the old city, souqs, the castle, and the port for a new and relaxing experience.

16. Soap Museum, Sidon – Meet the history of making soap, the manufacturing techniques, and hammams. The museum building used to be a soap factory back in the 17th century.

17. Al-Bass site & Tyre Beach – Tyre is a small and enjoyable city with a famous archeological site where you can see a Roman Hippodrome, Necropolis, a Roman road and aqueduct. You can also rent a boat or just swim or dive in the clearest sea in Lebanon.

18. Origami Academy, Dbayeh – A place where both kids and adults can learn how to make the whole new world from a piece of paper. There are always some new activities for those who enjoy the great atmosphere and food in the Academy.

19. Palm Islands Reserve, Tripoli – These three islands, which are declared as a nature reserve and protected by Unesco, are a sanctuary for many endangered species like rabbits, monk seals, loggerhead turtles and 300 varieties of migratory birds.

20. Synagogue Maghen Abraham, Beirut – the oldest, and now the only Beirut’s synagogue is located in former Jewish district Wadi Abou Jamile. Built in 1925 and then destroyed in 1982 in Israeli attack, the Synagogue is now in the process of renovation.

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