Nursery Essentials: What to include in the nest for your new baby

Expecting a baby? Congratulations! Preparing for your new arrival can be pretty daunting. Between all the strange and confusing baby products out there, trying to figure out everything you’ll need to get is enough to make your head spin!

We’ve pulled together a list of nursery essentials, here are just a few of the basics you’ll want to have ready before you bring your little one home:
How to Set Up a Nursery For Your New Baby
Clothes
Your teeny baby is going to grow in no time! So there’s really no need to buy too many newborn clothes. In the beginning you’re just going to want simple clothes like sleepers, all-in-one jumpsuits, cardigans(if the weather is cold) and socks. When selecting baby clothes, look for things that are:
• Comfort! Elaborate outfits are nice for photos, but comfort is the most important. Don’t forget they’ll be sleeping most of the time, so if they can’t sleep in it, it’s probably not worth buying
• Easy to remove. You’ll be changing your baby a lot (really, a lot!) – babies don’t generally like to be changed, so you’ll want clothes that are easy to get on and off. Look for wide neck holes, things that button or zip down the front (rather than the back), and snaps around the legs and bottom so you can do a diaper change without removing everything.

Bed time
As long as you have the space for it, you can put a newborn straight into a crib, saving you money on a bassinet (plus all the bassinet sized bedding that goes with it!). When buying a crib, look for one with an adjustable base that can be raised up, making it easier to pick up your baby without bending over too far. You’ll also need a crib mattress, sheets, blankets and a couple of mattress protectors.

Play time and other bits
While not essential, it’s nice to have a play mat or play gym with toys that dangle from above. Babies love reaching up and hitting them!

Other key items you’ll need before baby arrives include nappies, wipes, cotton swabs, bath towels, receiving blankets, drawers for storage and a good thermometer. Most other things you can buy at a later stage.

Baby on a budget: things you don’t need
If you’re on a budget, you’ll want to avoid buying too many things. Many of the baby items out there are unnecessary, or just fall into the “nice to have” rather than “must have” column. Here are just some examples of items you could probably live without:
Change table – a change table isn’t necessary as you can just as easily change your baby on a bed or the floor, especially if you are short on cash or space (or both).
Baby bath – for many, the sink is just as convenient as a ready made bath.
Mobile – mobiles are great for decorating a nursery, but really not essential. Your baby will still go to sleep without one
Baby monitor – if you live in an apartment or a small space, you’re likely to hear every peep without a monitor! If your living space has multiple floors, a monitor might be an essential.

Have we forgotten anything? We’d love to hear your tips for essential nursery items in the comments section.

Thinking of renting to a lodger or a roommate?

Shows like Income Property on HGTV make renting out a portion of your home pretty enticing – who wouldn’t want to pay off your mortgage quicker or have more disposable income? Before you start creating a basement apartment in your home or begin renting out a room in it, it’s important to do your homework. Being a landlord can be a demanding role that comes with a number of rules and regulations to follow.

Your House, Your Rules

Here are some you should keep in mind when making the decision to rent out a part of your home:

• Some municipalities require a permit for renting your basement. If you don’t have one and you build an income suite in a municipality that doesn’t allow it you could face some heavy fines and be forced to take down your rental property you worked so hard to put up.
Renting a room in your home with shared space generally doesn’t require a permit, but it could affect your insurance. You need to contact your home insurance company to let them know. If something were to happen to your rental space and the insurance company wasn’t informed of a lodger or tenant living in your home, they will likely not cover the damages.
• The rental income you get from a tenant renting a room out of your home is taxable. You must claim the rental income you get out of it on your tax return each year. Be sure you know what percentage of your home is being rented out as well as the percentage of time a renter uses the shared space like the laundry room, bathroom or kitchen when you file your taxes. You can also claim expenses specific to the rental unit like purchasing a washer and dryer.
• Make sure you know the fair market value in your area and set the rent for your suite accordingly. If you rent the room lower than the market rental rate you likely won’t be able to claim that income when it comes to your taxes.
• Know your rights and responsibilities as a landlord and make sure you protect yourself by having a written lease signed by the tenant. You should also screen potential tenants, making sure you do a credit check to learn whether the tenant would be a right fit for your suite.
• Lay down some ground rules, especially when you are renting out a room and there is shared space involved like a kitchen, laundry room and common area. It might be good to get it in writing as well just in case there is a disagreement that needs to be taken up with the Landlord and Tenant Board, which is responsible for settling landlord and tenant problems.
• When dealing with lodgers, since you are sharing your living space you are not bound by the same rules that apply when renting out a self contained apartment(learn more about the responsibilities of a landlord). You can select whomever you feel comfortable with, as they are effectively your room mate. Learn how to spot room mate red flags and avoid disaster.

Sources:
Ontario Human Rights Commission
Ontario Landlords Association

What to do with unwanted or unneeded Christmas gifts?

Everyone has received some gifts they have no use for. Whether it is a well-meaning gift that is not age appropriate, a duplicate of what you already own, something you have no space for, or just flat out don’t like, there are plenty of reasons to return, re-gift or sell a gift. What is the best way to go about selling an undesired gift?

Regift, resell, or return

Post your ad right after Christmas. Post-holiday, Kijiji has lower inventory than normal, so if you take advantage of this, your ad will stay near the top for longer than usual. You’ll also be able to gain visibility with boxing week shoppers looking for deals on Kijiji.

The hottest searched items in late December and January:
Exercise equipment. Treadmills, ellipticals and bowflexes have historically had the very high increases in searches from December to January.
Furniture. Ikea items, sectionals, chairs, and bunk beds are popular searches in January. Possibly all that entertaining leads people to realize they need more seating for growing families?
Baby items. Historically we have seen increases in searches of about 35% for baby items from December to January, with strollers, car seats, play pens, and cribs being the hottest items.

Categories that see a boost in traffic during the post-holiday season:
iPods, mp3, headphones
jewellery and watches
phones, especially cell phones
sporting goods, especially exercise equipment, skis, fishing equipment (ice fishing in particular), lacrosse items, and skates
bikes
books, in particular text books, so if you have any that you won’t need next semester, strike while the iron is hot, and post them before a new edition comes out!
electronics
furniture, indoor items for the home, and home appliances
tools, especially power tools, tool storage and benches.

Don’t delay – if you are thinking about posting an ad, do it early!

Keeping Cozy With Heaters

As winter descends, the heaters get turned up. What do you do if your heating doesn’t keep you warm enough?

First of all, if you are a renter, take it up with your landlord. As long as you aren’t leaving the windows open or keeping the heater off, legally, landlords have to keep your unit a certain temperature (the guideline varies by municipality, but is generally around 20 degrees). If the heating is not working properly, that should be high priority for fixing. If it isn’t, we recommend you check out some of the apartment listings on Kijiji. In the meantime, a space heater will keep you from freezing!

Shivering this winter? It doesn't have to be this way!

Radiant heaters

These are heaters that only heat up the immediate area around themselves. They come in various strengths and sizes and use an element such as water or electric coils to slowly radiate heat outwards.

Fan heaters

Fan heaters are a popular choice for indoor heating. They are generally electric and fairly effective depending on the type of heater and the size of the room that needs heating.

Fan heaters generally blow the air across a heated coil or panel, which gets the warm air further into the room than a radiant heater.

Oil or water filled radiator style heaters

These heaters use the conduction method to heat the room and are popular in bathrooms and smaller rooms that don’t have adequate heating. They are spot heaters so won’t warm the room quickly but they do tend to heat very evenly.

If you have small children these heaters are not be a good idea as they can get quite hot to the touch. The water or oil will not need changing as it is only warmed up and not burned to create the heat.

Outdoor heaters

If you’re having a bonfire night party, you may want to check out outdoor and patio heaters. These are usually spot heaters and come in various shapes and sizes.

Outdoor heating can really make the difference and your guests will thank you for the extra warmth. It’s possible to make even the coldest nights bearable with the right heating but they won’t be much help when it starts raining.

What size heater do I need?

Space heaters come in many shapes and sizes and prices vary so it’s a good idea to shop around for bargains on Kijiji. It’s also useful to work out what each heater is capable of and whether it has the right output to heat the space you intend to use it in.

Look for the heater output

When you are looking for a heater you’ll come across the various different outputs for each model and understanding what these mean will ensure you buy the right heater for your space.

Generally, the output for a given heater is given in watts and the accepted ratio is that it takes 10 watts to raise the temperature of a square foot by 10 degrees. This ratio isn’t exact, and there are several factors that can affect how a room heats up. High ceilings, drafty windows and vents, large doorways and stairwells can all be detrimental to the heating of a room.

Before you buy a heater always consider the size of the room you want to heat in comparison to the given output of the heaters you are looking at. If you have high ceilings or need a lot of heat then go for a higher wattage model.

Categories:Thrifty Living

How do I report issues to the Police if I’ve been defrauded?

At Kijiji, we do our best to keep our site clean and safe for all users, however, since we don’t vet people before they use the site, transactions are between the buying and selling party. When we get reports of illegal, fraudulent, or just downright creepy activity on the site, we do our best to remove the offenders from using Kijiji further, but we can’t bring justice or put offenders in jail that way. To ensure that justice is brought about, police have to be involved.

Whether you’ve been defrauded by someone or you think you’ve discovered stolen goods, we recommend that you always contact your local police to report the incident and get a reference number. If the police take the matter further, the investigating police officer will contact us. We’ll do all we can to provide the police with any information that assists their investigation.

Can’t Kijiji report the incident to police for me?

Unfortunately not – when police file a report, they need to list a victim, so they need to deal with you directly. We can’t provide the first person account of the facts of the case and a victim statement on your behalf. However, we are happy to help the police corroborate the facts and track down the others involved when it is in our power to do so.

What to do before you go to the police

If you did receive an item but things did not work out as planned, always try contacting the seller directly one more time to resolve your problem. If everyone went into the transaction with good intentions, you may be able to resolve the issue without outside assistance.

Is it a crime?

If you report your case to the police, they’ll decide if it should be investigated as a crime or civil dispute. If the police feel that your case doesn’t involve a criminal intent by the other party, it’s possible that they may advise you to take civil action to recover your losses. This will be handled by a small claims court. For this, you’ll need to know the name and address of the other party. A police officer will be able to help you with this process.

How do I make a police report?

The simplest way is to go to your local police station or call the local police operator on a non-emergency number. In most cases, your report can be taken by telephone and followed up later.

How should the police contact Kijiji?

The police should create a ticket with us under the topic “Report > Law Enforcement (Police Only)” and we will be in touch shortly thereafter.

What evidence do I need?

The police may need these from you:

  • Essential details such as the nature, date and time of the offence, and the name and contact details of the victim and suspect(s)
  • Any email exchanges between you and other person
  • If relevant, the ad reference number or a printed copy of the ad on Kijiji.