Money Tree

Passive Dividend Income, May 2017

Another month is in the books. May has come and gone. We are now past Memorial Day, which was traditionally the beginning of summer vacation, although many are still in school. The end of the month is a great time for reflecting on how the previous month unfolded. It’s also a good time to look into passive dividend income.

I started investing for dividend income nearly two years ago. I had been reading popular personal finance blogs like Mr. Money Mustache and popular PF books like Dave Ramsey’s The Total Money Makeover: Classic Edition: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness, which I highly recommend if you’ve not yet read it. (You can click the link above or the image below if you want to buy it and support me just a bit). Just about all of these financial gurus recommend spending less (sometimes much less) than you make and then investing the rest.

Then I came upon the old Dividend Mantra site after reading an interview on Mr. Money Mustache. This guy, Jason Fieber, was in the process of documenting the growth of his dividend growth portfolio with a goal to come up with enough passive income to live off of indefinitely, thus making paid work optional. I thought this was a great idea and bought my first dividend-paying stock in July 2015.

Now, I’m nearly two years into this journey. My first dividend was a whopping $0.64 from Apple. I’ve since sold that stock for a profit to pay off some debt, and I’ve now started emphasizing investment through an IRA rollover. My income has grown from that point, exponentially, in fact. However, I’m nowhere near what I’ll need to pay for my expenses. This is a long game.

Why Passive Dividend Income?

You might wonder why I focused on dividend income rather than total return or guessing which stock might take off like Apple or Google. I like the idea that a dividend is a return of some of the capital that I’ve invested. Companies cannot pay them out for the long run without actually having the cash flow and profits to sustain them.

Companies that have long dividend streaks have increased revenue and earnings per share over time. Some of them have done so through multiple recessions. These are the companies that I tend to like the most. I have some relatively high yielders and some that have low yields. But I like the cash coming in each month.

Passive Dividend Income Builds Up Slowly But Surely

Last month, I was in Europe on a (sort of) work trip. I got two separate emails during the trip that indicated dividends had posted to my account. I can literally be anywhere in the world, and I’ll have income flowing in because the companies that I own make money on a daily basis. Passive dividend income flows toward me no matter what I might be doing at a given moment. My money is working for me, and the more money that I put to work, the harder it will work.

Passive Dividend Income For May 2017

During the month of May, I earned (actually received, as it’s unearned income) dividends from three of the companies that I hold in my traditional IRA,. I also received a dividend from one fund in a 401k plan. Here is the income that passively came my way in May 2017:

AT & T (T):                                                                                      $7.35
Omega Healthcare Investors (OHI)                                $31.50
Realty Income Corp. (O)                                                          $2.11

Total for IRA Account:                                                           $40.96

JP Morgan Equity Income R5 (OIERX)                            $3.14

Total Passive Dividend Income for May:                 $44.10

I must say that I’m pretty happy with this amount, but it should grow in August, as I’ve added to both AT & T and Realty Income since the last ex-dividend date. This means that the monthly payout should be even larger.

Year-Over-Year Comparison

Last May, I earned only $9.18 for the entire month. This means that my $44.10 is a 380 percent increase in just over a year. I can’t complain much about that.

My dividend income in terms of the number of hours of freedom that it will buy me is something I really like to track. I could have bought just more than 2 hours and 12 minutes of freedom in May, based upon my belief that $20/hour would take care of my current standard of living pretty well.

I’ve now earned $149.41 for 2017 to this point. That’s just a hair below $30 a month. My forward dividend income for the next 12 months should come in right around $438.45. This is just short of 22 hours of freedom. I like my job and would probably continue to work should I actually get enough passive income to pay for my lifestyle. However, the ability to scale back would be pretty amazing.

I’ve basically gone from $0 in monthly dividend income to $36.53 on average (based on the $438.45 noted above). This took less than two years. With the reinvestment of dividends and new capital added, this snowball should continue rolling and picking up steam into the future.

How was your dividend income in May? Is it going in the right direction? I’ll be updating my dividend income page to reflect this month’s income.

If you’d like to keep up with my progress, be sure to sign up for updates in the email signup box near the top of the page. You can also follow me on Twitter.

Disclaimer: I am not a professional financial advisor. I intend this information for informational and educational purposes only. Perform due diligence before investing in any equities. See my disclosures page for more information. I’m long T, O, OHI, and OIERX.

 

Money Tree

Extra Online Income: Have A Plan For Success

Making money online is one of the main topics of this blog. Extra online income became extremely important to me when my wife quit work to take care of kids. I needed to find more income, and I needed to do it fast.

Extra online earnings can benefit your bottom line.
Photo Credit: FirmBee via Pixabay (public domain)

I had already worked in the fast food and retail sectors, and I knew that they did not pay all that well. My memories also told me that they took up a great deal of time away from home. This was all well and good for a single guy who lived at home. It was not, however, a great idea for a married man with kids.

This need for money drove me to look for ways to supplement my income via the Internet. Over time, I learned about some really good ways to make extra online income. I’ve also found that there are some important goals that make earning money online more sustainable.

Having A Plan For Extra Online Income Is Key

Looking at making some extra income “just because” is a reason to start earning. However, it’s probably not going to make most people sustain their efforts.

At first, I absolutely needed the income to make ends meet. This need to keep my bills paid was a pretty good motivating factor. I still need some income to supplement my income, but this need is not as urgent as it once was. This is where a plan comes into play.

I’ve recently been tracking my monthly extra online income. I have a few different streams that I tend to make money from each month. Whether it’s freelance writing or earning from Swagbucks, I try to make a few hundred extra dollars each month.

It’s easy to make money with Swagbucks. All you need to do is search the web with the site, and you could make a few bucks each and every month that you can use on anything from Amazon.com gift cards to PayPal cash. I’m currently using mine to build up a passive income stream via dividend-paying stocks. These dividend payments might help me retire a bit earlier than I could without them.

Paying Down Debt With Extra Online Income

Another goal, in addition to investing my online income, is paying down debt. Some people might look at this strategy as a form of investing. After all, I’m getting an automatic return that’s equal to my interest rate.

I still have about 26 years left on a mortgage. This is a long time, I know. I also know that I’ll pay quite a bit of interest on that loan over the long haul. While my current interest rate is not all that high, I don’t like the idea of having this debt until I’m nearly 70.

Debt Can Cause Stress
Debt can cause stress!

 

Therefore, I’m using some of my extra online income to pay down my mortgage. In the early days of my loan, most of my payment goes toward paying the bank interest. I remember a previous mortgage that I had at 6.125 percent interest rate (this was a few years ago, but a good rate at the time). About $70 of my initial payment went to paying down the loan. The rest, nearly $400, went to the bank.

I could have paid an extra $70 to $80 a month that first year and cut a month off the end of the loan for each extra payment. It’s not that hard to earn $70 or even $170 a month via online efforts.

While it might seem that answering surveys does not pay well, it might actually pay more than an actual job that you have to drive to. I’ve written about a scenario in which a woman making about $19,000 a year actually earned about $0.64 an hour after deducting expenses that came from working outside the home. In this instance, yes, answering surveys might improve your finances more.

Small Steps Make Big Differences

There are expenses that come from driving to work and dressing the part. If you already have a computer and Internet access, your cost is basically electricity. This could be a whopping $8 a YEAR! to charge. That’s a little more than $0.02 a day.

Just this last month, I paid an extra $14 toward my mortgage from small payments that I earned from GiftHulk and Clixsense. This might not sound like much, and it’s not. However, if I continue to add just $14 to my mortgage payment each month, I’d pay it off nearly 1.5 years earlier than the scheduled payoff date. I’d also save more than $3,000 in interest payments over the life of the loan. I’m sure I could find a better use for $3,000 than handing it over to the bank!

There’s a cool amortization schedule at Bankrate.com that allows you to play with the impact of extra payments. That’s where I came up with these numbers.

Small steps can make a big difference over time. This is why it’s important to have a plan for what you can do with your extra online earnings. Seeing progress toward these goals can help keep you motivated toward achieving them.

Perseverance Is Key With Extra Online Income

My goal is to see these earnings and passive income streams grow over time. If I’m able to do so, my mortgage payoff might come quite a bit quicker than what I’ve listed here. I might also be able to quit driving to work every day a few years earlier than most people–by choice, not by necessity.

You, too, can earn some extra money online, whether it comes from searching the web on Swagbucks or GiftHulk or answering some surveys on a site like CashCrate. There are also many freelance opportunities that can help you earn additional income. What will you use the extra online income you earn in your pajamas for? Having a plan can help you improve your finances, and the quicker that you can improve your finances, the better off you’ll be.

Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links. I may be compensated should you sign up using my link. You will get the same benefits regardless of how you sign up, but I appreciate any support.

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to sign up for the monthly newsletter that will keep you up with the latest posts. Also, you can follow me on Twitter.

Money Tree

Online Earnings For April 2017

Online earnings can benefit your bottom line.
Photo Credit: FirmBee via Pixabay (public domain)

The month of May 2017 is about a week old. April is long gone, and I’ve already updated any readers on my passive dividend income for April 2017.  Now it’s time to write about my online earnings for April.

I love passive income, but the biggest problem with this type of income is the fact that everyone starts at $0.  That is, unless you’re a trust fund baby. You have to earn active income before you can receive passive income.

Even in the instance of people who get born on third base, someone had to earn the capital to produce the passive income to start with. I’m in the accumulation phase of this journey.

Dave Ramsey likes to say that your biggest wealth building tool is your income. If you can build up passive income that covers your expenses, you’re financially independent. You’ve reached the “pinnacle experience” that Ramsey mentions.

However, if you’re not yet there, you still have to earn your income. This will usually come from a job. Doctors and lawyers and engineers tend to make enough to build wealth pretty quickly. Most of the rest of us, not so much.

This, dear readers, is why I started attempting to ramp up online earnings several years ago. I figured that I needed to bring in some more income than my job provided.

I’d worked fast food and retail in college. I knew I did not want to do so again. That’s why I started investigating ways to make money online, preferably in my pajamas–hence the name of this site.

I earned some side money in April. Here’s how I did so.

Online Earnings For April

I had online earnings from three different sources in April. Keep in mind that these avenues took a bit of effort on my part. They were definitely active income. Here is my online income by source for April 2017:

Freelance Writing:                                                                                                $218.02
Swagbucks:                                                                                                                  $50.00
GiftHulk:                                                                                                                          $5.00

Total Online Earnings for April 2017:                                                      $273.02

This is about an average month for me. As I’m looking to build up passive income, I could increase my passive income by nearly $11 if I invested all of this money into a dividend stock that pays a 4 percent yield. That’s enough to buy me about 1/2 an hour of freedom based upon my estimate of needing $20/hour to keep up my current standard of living.

I’ve had people ask where I earned money for freelance writing. I’ve earned several thousand dollars writing on Textbroker over the past few years. This is a site where people who need articles/blog posts/marketing materials written post opportunities for enterprising individuals like myself. You can claim any that are available at the level you’ve qualified for.

I earned a bit of money from GiftHulk this month.  This site pays users for the first search they perform each and every hour. You can also perform other tasks like watching videos on GiftHulk TV to earn more “Hulk Coins”, which is the digital currency that you can cash out.

I used my Hulk Coins to get PayPal cash, which I put toward paying down my mortgage. This will effectively earn me a return of 4.125 percent, which is my current interest rate. You can sign up for GiftHulk here if you want to start earning a few bucks in your spare time.

I also earned some income from Swagbucks.  This is a site that’s pretty easy to use. You can use the money you earn here to build wealth over time. Here’s a resource with the general strategy that you can use to start growing passive income via Swagbucks.

Benefits Of Earning Online

One of the biggest benefits of earning money online is the fact that just about anyone in America can do so. For sites like Swagbucks or GiftHulk teens as young as 13 can earn.  Most freelance writing sites will require you to be an adult.

If you’re smart, you can use the money you earn to do great things like pay off debt or save for the future. Whether you pay off debt or save money, you’ll earn a return that’s equal to the interest rate. You can avoid paying interest if you pay off debt. You can earn interest or dividends if you save. It’s a win-win situation regardless.

Online earnings are only limited by the time that you spend and the effort you put into making money. Also, it’s a good idea to think in terms of the future. A dollar today is worth more than a dollar in the future when you think of the power of compounding. The time to start earning is today so that you can take advantage of that power.

If you’d like to follow my progress each month, be sure to go to the top of the page and sign up for updates.

Disclaimer: This site has affiliate links. If you decide to sign up with one of these affiliate links, I may be compensated. I appreciate any support you might provide.

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April 2017 Passive Dividend Income

Passive Dividend Income Builds Up Slowly But Surely

The month of April is not quite over yet, but my passive dividend income for April has all arrived in my accounts.  The end of the month is one of my favorite times, because I get to tally up the passive income that I earned from dividends over the previous 30 (or so) days.

April was the first month of the second quarter. This means that fewer companies tend to pay out, which hurts my income from my 401k fund. Regardless, all of the companies that I own continued to work making money for me.

Every share that I own is an ever-so-small slice of the company that issued the shares. In effect, I own 0.0000000001 percent of these companies (or some other such minuscule number). Regardless, I love the fact that they work on the other side of the world while I’m sleeping to make me money.

Regardless of what I do in a given month, I get paid. Of course, I have a regular job and work hard to supplement that income, but it’s good to know that I have a growing stream of passive dividend income. Here are the companies that paid me in April:

Passive Dividend Income For April 2017

Taxable Account:

Coca-Cola (KO)                                                                           $3.24

Traditional IRA:

Realty Income Corp (O)                                                          $2.11
General Electric (GE)                                                                $9.60

401k

JP Morgan Equity Income R5 (OIERX)                        $0.01

TOTAL DIVIDENDS FOR APRIL 2017:                         $14.96

Yes, I earned a whopping penny from my 401k. Not terribly impressive, but better than nothing, I suppose.

Year-To-Year Comparison

Admittedly, not even reaching $15 might cause frustration for many people. However, when I look at this amount and compare it to the same month last year, I earned only $8.90 last year. This means that I increased my dividend income by 68% in just 12 months.

Increases of this size will not continue indefinitely, but they are pretty cool. They also help me build up my passive dividend income. They are important building blocks toward my goal.

I’ve now earned $105.31 so far in 2017. At this point last year, I’d earned only $33.27. This means that my passive dividend income is up 217% in just a year’s time. Pretty cool. Onward and upward.

I have to point out one thing, however. I sold all of my taxable investments over the past month, because, as I noted  previously, Loyal3 is shutting down. As this was my taxable investment vehicle of choice, I sold out and put the money into my Traditional IRA, hoping to cut my taxes for 2017 in the process.

This means that you’ll no longer see some of the common dividend payers on my reports previously. I wanted to let you know why.

I replaced my taxable holdings with more AT & T. This brings my estimated dividend income (not counting the 401k) to $398.90 for the next 12 months. I’m only one more purchase or one more dividend raise from crossing over the $400 mark. Again, pretty cool stuff.

How was your dividend income for April? Let me know in the comments. I’ve also updated my passive dividend income page so you can see the growth of my income over time.

If you’d like to keep up with my progress, be sure to sign up for updates in the email signup box near the top of the page. You can also follow me on Twitter.

Disclaimer: I am not a professional financial advisor. I intend this information for informational and educational purposes only. Perform due diligence before investing in any equities. See my disclosures page for more information.

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

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Passive Dividend Income for February 2017

Passive Dividend Income Builds Up Slowly But Surely
The month of February is not quite up, but I’ve already gotten all of my passive dividend income payments for the month.  I always enjoy looking back over the month that was and add up my dividend earnings. Dividends are my favorite form of passive income because they come in whether I have work or not.  As I’ve said many times before, passive income is the best income.

I own some great companies that pay me on a regular basis. These companies sell their wares around the world every day. They have workers who are dedicated to serving their clients, and I’m not one of them.  These workers show up to do their jobs when I don’t have to. I have weekends off, but companies like Starbucks (SBUX) sell coffee each and every day in just about every time zone known to man. This is a really cool concept that allows me to build wealth.

Passive Dividend Income For February 2017

I earned multiple payments in February 2017. Three companies and one fund paid me basically for existing. Without holding you in suspense any longer, here is my passive dividend income for the month that was:

Taxable Account:

Starbucks (SBUX)                                                   $1.12

IRA

Realty Income Corp (O)                                      $2.11
Omega Healthcare Investors (OHI)         $31.00

401K

JP Morgan Equity Income RF (OIERX)     $2.33

TOTAL dividends, 2/17                                   $36.56

By looking at my passive dividend income for February, I was able to earn $36.56. I like to compare my income on a year-over-year basis, and in February 2016, I earned $6.27. This was more than $30 less than my earnings just one year later, which means my passive dividend income grew by more than 500 percent in just one year. I have to say I’m happy with this result. However, I don’t assume that this will continue indefinitely.

It’s evident that OHI was my biggest payer for the month. I don’t really like the outsized income that I get from one company, so I’m hoping that I can diversify more so that my income is not so dependent upon one company.

When I add my January income to my income from February, I’m now up to $48.19 in passive dividend income for 2017. It was June before I passed this amount of income in 2016, so I’m definitely thrilled with this progress

Hours of Freedom Earned

I like to track how much freedom my dividend income provides me each month. I have a forward estimated dividend income of $322.95 for the next 12 months. This means that I now have about 16 hours of freedom built up for the next 12 months.

I argue that I would need to earn $20 an hour to maintain a similar standard of living to what I currently have. This figure is arrived at with the assumption that I would not be paying toward retirement or Social Security. Additionally, I would have fewer expenses associated with work like an occasional meal out and commuting.

16 hours of freedom is the equivalent of 1 hour, 20 minutes a month. If I look at my income from February only, it would have nearly bought me 2 hours of freedom. It’s not quite the 170 hours that I’d normally work for a month, but it’s a start.  I enjoy looking at the upward trend, however.

How was your passive dividend income for February? Let us know in the comments.

If you’d like to keep up with my progress, be sure to sign up for updates in the email signup box near the top of the page. You can also follow me on Twitter.

Disclaimer: I am not a professional financial advisor. I intend this information for informational and educational purposes only. Perform due diligence before investing in any equities. See my disclosures page for more information.

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

 

Money Tree

Online Earnings For January 2017

The title of this site is Earn Money In Pajamas. I like earning money while sitting at home and watching TV or hanging out  with the family. I can earn money at home at just about any time that I’m not at my day job. The money that I earn online goes toward investing and toward paying bills. It also goes toward paying off debts.  I’m again tracking my online earnings.

Online Earnings Can Add Up
A $500 bill, public domain via Wikimedia Commons

I used to keep up with how much money I made each month. I set online earnings goals for the first couple of years that I kept this site up. The past couple of years, however, I’ve slipped up on this process. I’ve been focusing upon earning money online, but I’ve been reporting on the money that I’ve made from dividend income.

Dividend income is a great method of earning money in pajamas. I own teeny little slices of companies that pay me a portion of their profits. All I have to do is wake up and get the notification that I’ve earned a dividend.  This is an example of passive income, which I firmly believe is the best form of income.

Online Earnings For January

I’ve also been involved in active income in the past couple of years, and one of the methods that I’ve continued to earn money is via online activities. After giving it some thought, I decided that I might give regular updates to show you that it’s possible to earn money online (in your pajamas) in 2017. Here is what I earned via online activity in 2017:

Swagbucks:                                      $75.00
Freelance Writing:                      $259.60

Total Online Earnings 1/17:  $334.60

I can’t complain. The money that I’ve earned with Swagbucks has gone toward purchasing stock in high-quality companies. The rest of the online earnings that I’ve accumulated over the month have yet to be spent on anything. I would like to invest them, but I need to build up some emergency savings. How did you do via online earnings last month?

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Smashing Through A Passive Income Milestone

Passive each Passive Income Milestone takes time

I was just online checking my forward dividend income today. I had neglected to put in a raise from Realty Income Corp that allowed me to smash past a passive income milestone. When I started looking at the dividend growth as a great option for building a stream of passive income over time, the idea that the companies that I own giving out regular raises was one of the top concepts that drew me to this strategy.

A New Passive Income Milestone

I input the raise from Realty Income into my spreadsheet (I’m an Excel guy). I have ten shares, which is obviously not an impressive amount. But the raise put me up over $300 in annual anticipated dividend income.

Admittedly, this is not a huge amount of money. I’m now slightly above $300 in my estimated income for the year. That’s just slightly more than $25 a month.

Figuring Passive Income In Hours Worked

Every month when I give a new passive dividend income report, I look at how many hours of work I could theoretically take off by replacing active income with passive income. Every $100 passive income milestone that I pass effectively gives me five hours of freedom, theoretically for life.

With $300 built up, I’m now at 15 hours if I figure that I would need $20 of passive income for ever hour of work. That’s 1 hour, 15 minutes every single month. I would not need to pay any income taxes up to nearly $73,000 of income if the income  is related to qualified dividends. There would be no Social Security taxes coming out. I would not be putting any money into retirement programs.

That’s quite a lot of money coming out on a monthly basis that I don’t even see. Therefore, my current standard of living would not change much, if at all, if I made $20 an hour.

Isn’t This The Slow Way To Build Wealth?

Some of you might wonder if this is the slow way to build wealth, and you’d be right if you think that it is.  Each passive income milestone seems to take a while to hit; however, this is basically the only way to build wealth.

There are tons of get-rich-quick schemes out there. They generally tend to cut wealth rather than build it. Flipping a house can quickly turn into a money pit if you don’t know what you’re doing. Borrowing money to buy pork bellies isn’t any better. You have a better likelihood of getting struck by lightning than you do of hitting the lottery.

Building wealth is kind of like the story of the tortoise and the hare. Those who try the get-rich-quick schemes might look like they’re getting ahead, but they’ll tend to wind up with less wealth than the steady plodders who put away a little bit of their income on a weekly or monthly basis.

I’m thrilled that I’ve smashed through this passive income milestone, but it’s hopefully just one of many more to come.  What milestones do you use to track your progress? Let me know in the comments.

Also, if you’d like to keep up with my progress, be sure to sign up to get updates in the email box at the top of the page or follow me on Twitter.

Disclosure: I am not a licensed financial professional. Be sure to perform due diligence making any investments. I intend my posts for educational and entertainment value only.

Image Credit: African Spurred Tortoise by Photographer 2008, via Wikimedia Commons CC BY-SA 3.0

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Does Your Budget Matter? Build Wealth With Small Sums

Does Your Budget Matter?

When it comes to investing money and building up a nest egg, does your budget matter? It’s commonly assumed that it’s impossible to save for the future unless you have thousands of dollars stashed away. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Today, more than perhaps at any time in history, it is possible to start a nest egg for with minimal expense. Here are some steps to take to build wealth at any income level. Even a dollar a day can really add up over time.

Your Budget Doesn’t Matter: Pay Yourself First

These three words make up a very important piece of advice. When you fail to save money on a monthly basis before you pay all of the bills, it’s likely that there will be nothing left over to save. This savings should be automatic. If your employer allows you to save in a 401k, have the funds taken out before you see them. If you only have access to a savings account, be sure to have a bit taken out of every check. Even $5 or $10 a week can build up over time.

Choose Your Investing Platform

There are many different options when it comes to investing. Your local bank or credit union probably has savings accounts and certificates of deposit that you can use to stash money in the short term. They won’t earn much in the way of interest under most conditions. When you get up to $500 or $1,000 in savings, it’s probably a good idea to move toward a brokerage. While the bank might have a broker that can help you buy stocks and bonds, it’s likely that they’ll charge an arm and a leg.

There are tons of online brokerages, and many of them are discount brokerages in nature. It’s possible to invest via Loyal3 and pay nothing in brokerage transaction fees. I’ve used both Loyal3 and TradeKing for cheap brokerage options.  TradeKing only charges $4.95 for trades and offers options trading.

Think About Index Investing

I’ve personally started using a dividend growth model for investing. I’m looking at the amount of income that my portfolio can provide. If you’re looking more toward capital gains, this might not be the best option for you. Even Warren Buffett told his heirs to invest his estate in index funds. These funds have minimal fees and track an index like the S & P 500. They do not attempt to beat the market like regular mutual funds. Traditional funds that try to beat the overall market tend to charge high fees, and these fees tend to cut down on your actual investment returns.

Warren Buffett and Barack Obama
Warren Buffett and Barack Obama, public domain via Pete Souza

Buffett often points out his optimism for the American economy over the long term. Therefore, he’s committed to investing in America. He’s been pretty successful so far, so it’s probably a good idea to listen to what he thinks about investing.

Look For Additional Income

If you’re asking the question, “Does your budget matter?” because it’s pretty tight, it might be a good idea to look for additional income. This might involve getting a second job. It might involve starting a business as a side hustle. It might involve trying to earn bonuses for opening bank accounts or credit cards. Here are some ways to earn money online without spending a penny.

This additional income, even a few dollars every week, can be the basis for increasing the amount that you have in your nest egg. As the nest egg starts to grow, it will build its own momentum. Many people have talked of building a dividend snowball that starts to grow on its own as more capital and dividends get added to the snowball. Over time, you might l awake to find that your snowball is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.  Even index funds will tend to pay out dividends that can go toward buying more shares.

Regardless of how much you make, anything above your actual expenses can go toward building wealth. The time to start is today. The younger you are, the more time you have to build your nest egg over time.  The answer to the question at the beginning of the article, Does Your Budget Matter? is a definite no.

Disclaimer: Some of these links are affiliate links that can may compensate me should you sign up for a product or service. Also, I am not an investment professional. This article is intended only for educational and informational purposes, so be sure to perform due diligence before investing in any securities.

Money Tree

Setting Goals To Achieve Success

Those who fail to plan, plan to fail. This is a common refrain that I’ve heard many times in my life. Another example is the statement that those who aim for nothing will hit it every time. I don’t know about you, but I definitely don’t want to fail to hit anything. This is why I’ve decided to start setting goals. The beginning of a new year is a good time to set up new goals.

Consider How To Get There

The most important step in setting goals is knowing where you want to go in life. Perhaps you want to become an engineer. This would require going to school for an engineering degree. The same goes for becoming a teacher, a lawyer, or a doctor. If you’d rather become an entrepreneur, schooling might not be quite so necessary. There are many successful entrepreneurs who haven’t completed a degree, among them are such billionaires and Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg. However, these innovators had big ideas and the technical know-how to achieve their goals.

Set Up Checkpoints To Measure Success

It’s a good idea to break up major goals into smaller chunks. This is where short-term, medium-term, and long-term goals come into play. In the example of getting an engineering degree, the long-term goal is getting the degree and getting licensed. A good short-term goal might be passing Calculus 1. After getting through the short-term goals, the medium-term goals will become the new short-term goals. Evaluating goals is a constant necessity.

Here are some goals that I’ve been interested in.

Setting Goals for Passive Income Can Lead to Financial Success

I recently read the book Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin. Questioning some of the purchases that we frequently make can help us cut expenses that require life energy to pay for. When we make more money than we spend, what’s left over is capital that we can use toward an emergency fund or toward building passive income. I’ve decided after reading up on blogs like Dividend Growth Investor that trying to build up a portfolio of dividend growth stocks like Omega Healthcare Investors and Coca-Cola can provide a growing stream of passive income through growth in the annual dividend payments and through the deployment of additional capital. My long-term goal is building up enough passive income to pay for living expenses. My short-term goal might be to get to $1,000 in forward dividend income by the end of the year.

Setting Goals Can Lead to Passive Income
B&O Stock Certificate, public domain via Wikimedia Commons

Online Earning Could Be A Smart Goal

While it’s possible to build up passive income with many jobs, many people will have a problem having enough excess capital to grow much passive income on their main salary. This is where earning a bit of money on the side can help. This excess money can then go toward savings if it’s not required for paying ordinary living expenses. It’s also possible to earn quite a nice sum from making money online. There are many lists online that offer ways to make money, some without spending a penny. I’ve used these methods to earn thousands over the past few years.

Paying Off Debt

Debt can really be a drag. The more you have, the closer you might be to financial ruin. It’s hard to grow a strong stream of passive income and a solid net worth with massive amounts of debt. Setting goals for paying down debt over time can lead to a great achievement that can definitely aid in your overall financial success.

Achieving Travel Goals

I love to travel. Therefore, some of my goals have to do with visiting some cool places around the US and the world. I had a goal of taking my family to Europe on the cheap, and I was able to do so. However, before I could, I had to figure out a way to pay for most of the trip’s possible expenses with frequent  flyer miles and hotel loyalty points. I achieved this goal with some well-timed credit card signup bonuses like the ones offered on these five credit cards that you could get in 2017.  I’m already strategizing two trips ahead with the credit cards I’m using.

The process of setting and achieving goals can be a great process that can help you gain the success that you’re looking for.  Setting up mileposts along the way can help you gauge how you’re doing in the process. If you don’t set any goals, one thing is certain. You won’t accomplish them.

Have you set any goals this year? Let us know in the comments.

Also, if you’d like to keep up with new posts and ideas for maximizing your resources in life (including time), be sure to sign up for email updates in the box at the top of the page and via our Twitter account @moneyinpajamas.

Money Tree

Earning Money in Pajamas With Real Estate

One of my favorite sayings is that passive income is the best income.  Passive income is money that you don’t have to put any effort toward earning. It’s money that you get just by waking up in the morning. Passive income would definitely be a form of earning money in pajamas. You might wonder where that idea of earning money in pajamas and real estate investing would come in.

You Can Make Money in Real Estate

When most people think of investing in real estate, they think of the common slumlord who owns a property or ten that they bought to make some money of some poor, unsuspecting college student or fast food employee (sometimes these demographics are one and the same).  This is definitely one way that people have made money in real estate–buy a property with other people’s money and then have your renters pay the loan back. After the property gets paid off, the rent that hopefully continues to come in becomes a solid cash flow, or if you don’t want to continue to deal with renters, you can sell the house off and pocket the cash. At least this is how it’s supposed to work.

Real Estate image. Wikimedia Commons via GregoryJ77, Public Domain

You Can Make Money in Real Estate, But…

Many landlords find that they can make money at times, but there is the issue of finding people to rent out the property, or more importantly, the right people to rent out the property. Some renters will stiff their landlords and fail to pay on a regular basis. If you’ve bought the house and still owe on it, this lack of cash flow from derelict tenants can lead to negative consequences for your budget. Then, if this problem becomes habitual, you might find that it’s necessary to evict the renters. I don’t know about you, but getting the courts involved does not really sound like passive income to me.  Furthermore, renters are less likely to treat your property with care. Many landlords have found that they have to clean up big messes when their renters move out, be it voluntarily or in a more forcible manner. Some of this cleaning might require some  light construction work. I’m not terribly handy, nor do I like cleaning up messes. How then did I come to decide that I’d like to become a landlord?

Enter the REIT

As I’ve been noting in recent months, I’m investing in equities in an attempt to slow down how much I have to work for money as more of my money goes to work for me on a daily basis. If landlording sounds like a lot of work, it doesn’t have to be. I’ve decided that my real estate investments (at least outside of my own personal residence) will come through Real Estate Investment Trusts, otherwise known as REITs. These companies own properties that they then rent out to make money. The REITs that I’m investing in directly have businesses that tend to sign multi-year leases with annual increases built in as renters. I’ve owned some shares of Omega Healthcare Investors (OHI) for a few months, and I just pulled the trigger on 10 shares of Realty Income Corp (O) this past week.

Both OHI and O pay out healthy dividends at this point. They are also on sale from the levels that they were at in the summer. Additionally, the dividends that these REITs have been paying have also been growing on a regular basis. Where most companies who increase their dividends on a regular basis do so annually, Omega Healthcare Investors has been increasing its dividend on a quarterly basis for the past few years, and Realty Income has been announcing multiple increases each year. Additionally, Realty Income pays out every single month, much like a property that I’d own outright.  That’s 12 payments a year. I’m planning to build up the position over time, so my income should grow from a small beginning.

I’m getting a dividend yield of nearly 4.5 percent on O and nearly 7.5 percent on OHI. I don’t have to find renters. The management of these companies do that for me. I don’t have to clean up for tenants who move out. The companies will do that for me. Finally, I don’t have to evict anyone. The companies will do so should it come to that point. I don’t have to do anything related to management of the property. I get all of the benefits of being a landlord (as well as some of the risks) without actually having to deal with most of the hassles that come with the territory. Of course, there are risks with any investment, but I feel that the passive income that I’ll hopefully be earning while sitting in my recliner or in my office for years or decades to come will pay off big in the long run.

Disclaimer: Long O and OHI, I am not an investment professional. Information on this site is intended for educational/informational/entertainment purposes. It is NOT a recommendation to buy. Please do due diligence before investing in anything at all. 

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