About Me

Hi my name is Brandon and this is my financial and investing blog!

A little bit about myself, I am a 22 year old college student, studying in the engineering field. I currently invest in ETF’s, stocks, 401k, and peer-to-peer lending. I am looking into real estate investing, options trading, and drop shipping in the future.

Premier Roofing Overall Review

Alright the long-awaited Premier Roofing Review is finally here. It’s been long delayed I wanted to wait until I was finished with my time at Premier Roofing and after my email account was shut down, I believe we are there. That and I kept putting this one off and dragging ass on blog posting so I apologize for that.

Let’s see if I had to summarize working for Premier Roofing Company as a Field Sales Representative, I would say it is very rewarding hard work if you are successful at it. If you are not successful, it’s going to be rough. There are lots of variables affecting your success and some are out of your control like if there is light or no hail, HOA no soliciting in your neighborhood, bad neighborhood not very open, insurance adjusters not passing roofs, etc.

There’s not much you can do about some of those, no matter how good you are at sales and door knocking. There is just a certain amount of luck and circumstance you need to go your way. So, if you do not have these things going for you at the very beginning your confidence will get crushed and you will get discouraged easily.

I can say this from personal experience that my first 3 blocks were not hot, all in all I sold 2 roofs and one fell through and the other was extremely slow. Fortunately, the next several blocks picked up for me, but you see where I am coming from and how demoralizing that can be especially on a commission only pay.

Now of course if you suck at people skills, or you suck at sales, or you do not learn the training material or take it seriously you will also have a tough time. This should be given, you can’t show up on the front door of a house and be mumbling or stumbling all over your script or don’t have responses to any objections. You will clearly fail.

So, I highlighted some of the potential issues and pitfalls you may face with this job lets get to the good stuff. I think first and foremost would be the compensation, now obviously its commission based so if you don’t sell you don’t get paid however I think with the 6 week draw pay guaranteed is a really great policy that helps new sales reps get their feet under them and start making the sales and getting to the 2nd tier of the pay scale to start bring in some money.

For those of you who may not know the pay scale I worked with as an intern was $100 for a signed contracts with a claim number, $200 for when the roof is put into production, and for interns only we received $200 flat rate commission for when the roofs were built rather than the commission payout that the full time reps received since we were temporary workers and the insurance payout process is lengthy. This works out to $500 for a completed roof. Between the draw pay, all the various steps and payments throughout the process, and my $3,000 back to school  bonus for hitting a production target(30 roofs in production),  I made $22,200 this summer not including taxes. This has been way more lucrative than any of my previous internships or co-ops. It should be noted that I also took about a week-long vacation in the middle of the summer, however I also was closing deals after I returned to school. Altogether a fantastic earning opportunity when successful, to gauge my success I was the 6 or 7th top sales rep when I left out of 192 that were working throughout this season.

Sales itself is a great opportunity for you to learn people skills, how to build confidence, build value, work on conflict resolution, and learn how to deal with rejection. I think all these opportunities listed above are amplified with door to door sales because there is no medium to mitigate the emotion, it is in your face rejection. If you don’t have tough skin this will be challenging to overcome. I can tell you first hand that some of the rejections I received and some of the deals that fell through really stung and really got into my head.

I learned a lot about perseverance with this internship. As an independent contractor we have the freedom to work when we want however when you don’t sell you don’t get paid and when you don’t go out there and knock doors you won’t make any sales. I can tell you there were many days where I pulled up to my street in my car and I did not want to get out the car and go knocking. Even worse was when you were going through the same street for the 5th or 6th time trying to get in front of more people and knowing people were avoiding you or were simply tired of seeing you walk on their street. That was a tough pill to swallow and I hated it more than anything.

I learned how to hustle in this internship. Previously in my prior work experiences you punched the time clock and started making money and whether you were working or not it didn’t matter because that clock was still ticking. With Premier there was no clock just agreements and PFYNR’s and COC’s, those were the payment scales. There were weeks when I walked away with barely anything to show for it and there were weeks that made me feel on top of the world. We were always hustling though, the top producers, the top sales reps, Saturday’s and Sunday’s till dark. We took meetings in the mornings and got our paperwork all together and door knocked and sold all afternoon. Nonstop all summer with little to no breaks. I even confirmed a sale (got the claim number) in the Atlanta Airport on the way to my vacation destination!

I believe that covers my experience from head to toe. Overall it was an incredible lucrative experience. I don’t think I will return to Premier Roofing though. I believe with my level of education and my skill set that I would be better off to pursue a different kind of sales role or a different role all together. Also roofs in the summer of Kansas City are hot and that really sucked. I do appreciate the opportunity and I am glad I could do as much as I did while I was there. I am slightly disappointed though, I had told my supervisor and sales manager that I wanted to make 30 sales that summer. I lied about that, the real target was 50 sales and I just didn’t want to come off as a cocky asshole, I got to 47 sales. In my final push to get my last sales I got frustrated with a customer and went a little too far with a prank regarding dropping off my business card. I am sorry for that and how inappropriate that was of me however I think basic communication on both parties would have prevented that issue from ever occurring.

I also feel like I left a lot of sales on the table and could have performed better during portions of my summer. I think I took a few too many days off and gave up and went home too early on occasion. Had I pushed myself to the max I think I would have been able to hit my target of 50 sales and perhaps made it to the top of the sales leaderboard which would have been my top goal. Nonetheless I think my performance showed that I am an adequate sales representative for Premier Roofing and I learned a lot from them and I hope I did enough to help them.

If you have any questions regarding my internship or Premier Roofing, please feel free to leave a comment.

 

Thanks,

B^2

Passive Income update 11-4-2018

I’m back at it with another update on my passive income. Two months have passed, and we’ve made progress since I last filled you guys in. To remind everyone I currently receive passive income in the form of interest payments from Lending Club, my savings account, stock dividends, and stock interest payments.

I have invested more money into my Robinhood portfolio, stash app and my lending club account since I last touched on this subject and the results speak for themselves. Two months ago, I had received $233.74 YTD in Lending Club payments, now I am at $343.72. Stock interest and dividend payments have also increased from $186.37 to $260.89. Overall that puts me at a YTD passive income of $604.61 or $60.46/month. This is in comparison to my September numbers of $420.11 YTD and $46.68/month. This shows a 29.5% increase in monthly passive income! Below is a screenshot of my Lending club interest payments by month as you can see we have a dramatic uptick through the fall as funds were added in late summer and early fall showing the strong passive income performance described above.

LC interest snip

Unfortunately, I do not think I will make it to my goal of $1,000 of passive income YTD. The progress I have made will continue to help grow my passive income year after year with the goal of my passive income exceeding my earned income one day.

My lending club portfolio has been driving much of this passive income growth and it has not shown its full strength yet. This month all my notes will be issues and generating income and we will see what kind of profits that machine can churn out. My stock portfolio has been extremely volatile during the month of October as many investors have experienced the wild ride with me. I am optimistic of my portfolio and believe I will be making some sales in the future and picking up dividend stocks and profits along the way. My Stash portfolio also grew with considerable size over the last several months and it is likely that some of those positions will be rewarding me in the future as well.

Exciting things are soon to come as the end of 2018 approaches! Expect another passive income update at the end of 2018 or beginning of 2019 to recap the full year and see my future and ambitions for 2019. With graduation, relocating, and adulting there are sure to be some interesting topics to talk about and interesting plans in my future.

I will also be using this post to apologize for my horrendous lack of posting in October, as highlighted in my November goal picture on Instagram I have been off my game to say the least and will be using this first half of November or so to get back on track. For those of you who are curious I only had 1 blog article posted and lacked on my Instagram game as well. This article is already my second of November and many more are to come!

Do you ever get in a rut like I did? If so, leave a comment on how you got out of it or what you did to wake yourself back up. I’m sure myself and everyone reading this could get some benefit out of your words of wisdom!

Thanks,

B^2

 

Dividend update 11-2-18

Back with another dividend update. The last one was almost 3 months ago and since then I have improved my forward dividend by 23 percent! So, lets jump right into it.

Here is my table of dividends as seen on August 5th.

Ticker cost avg percent yield dividend/share share # year equivalent
CEFL $16.92 14.36% $2.43 16 $38.88
LB $32.36 7.42% $2.40 10 $24.00
T $31.89 6.27% $2.00 10 $20.00
STAG $25.85 5.49% $1.42 20 $28.40
F $11.19 5.36% $0.60 80 $48.00
O $55.78 4.73% $2.64 27 $71.28
PG $74.40 3.86% $2.87 2 $5.74
AAPL $157.51 1.85% $2.92 1 $2.92
      Total forward dividend $239.22
      Yield on portfolio 2.81%

 

To recap that is $239.22 in forward dividends on $8500. I have since then increased my portfolio by $3,000 to a standing total of $11,500 as of now.

Below is the chart showing my current forward dividend.

Ticker cost avg percent yield dividend/share share # year equivalent
CEFL $16.55 15.65% $2.59 20 $51.80
LB $32.00 7.50% $2.40 11 $26.40
T $31.89 6.27% $2.00 10 $20.00
STAG $25.85 5.49% $1.42 20 $28.40
F $10.52 5.70% $0.60 115 $69.00
CAT $113.68 3.03% $3.44 2 $6.88
O $55.78 4.75% $2.65 27 $71.55
PG $74.40 3.86% $2.87 2 $5.74
AAPL $157.51 1.85% $2.92 1 $2.92
CBL $4.09 7.33% $0.30 40 $12.00
      Total forward dividend $294.69
      Yield on portfolio 2.56%

 

Some new additions have been made such as CAT, and CBL. I have also increased numerous positions such as F, LB, and CEFL. My percent total has gone down slightly since I have bought positions and added to non-dividend positions such as CHK, BPMX and FB. Unfortunately, CBL took a massive dividend cut of 67.5% and has significantly hurt my forward dividend projection.

I am currently in a holding pattern as I will have no more income coming in for the foreseeable future. I will be using my dividends to purchase more stocks and options and hope that I will be able to generate profits to keep my dividend base growing throughout the school year. I also hope to make some large sales in the future.

Several notes that I will highlight further in my passive income update which should be arriving here this weekend include. Added positions in my stash account that produce dividends and interest payments. Added cash in my savings account which produces interest, as well as added cash into my Lending Club account that also produces interest payments. While not dividend driven my passive income, streams are growing and will continue to grow in the future.

Below is a highlight of my dividends and interest over time.

Dividend tracking 2017 2018
January $0.00 $12.86
February $0.00 $28.19
March $0.00 $33.18
April $0.00 $15.35
May $0.00 $17.72
June $12.54 $28.21
July $6.39 $14.32
August $5.55 $18.42
September $20.68 $35.56
October $17.86 $25.08
November $23.12 $8.80
December $28.13 $17.25
total $114.27 $254.94

 

Reviewing over the last several months we can see August saw a dividend increase of 231%, September saw an increase of 72%, and October saw an increase of 40%.

div 11-2

Currently sitting ~$255 of dividends to be collected in 2018 unfortunately that will be far short of my goal of reaching $500 in dividends received. Consistency is key, and I plan to continue adding to my dividend positions and increase my passive income. With large sales and profits generated from that in the future we should see a dramatic increase in forward dividend in the coming months/years. In the coming months we will be able to see actual YoY gains on the full calendar year and see exactly how much improvement has been made since there have been various accounting changes as well as significant positions added that haven’t materialized quite yet.

As always let me know what you think and if you have any comments or suggestions I would love to hear them!

Lending Club Update 9/17/18

Hope everyone is doing well, I’ve been getting some questions about lending club here lately with how much I’ve been talking about it and posting about it. Hopefully today I can answer all those questions and give you an update on where I am at with this investing platform.

In case you weren’t around when I first talked about this, I started using lending club in April of 2017. Lending club is a peer to peer lending and borrowing platform. Where individual investors fund individual borrowers for various loans. These loans can range quite a bit in size from $4,000 to $35,000 or so, 36 months or 60 months in length, and of various ratings and interest rates. Now I’m not going all in on $30k loans or anything like that, I’m not rolling that deep by any stretch of the imagination. The loans are bought in notes from an investor perspective, these notes are in $25 increments. Now you could go and fund an entire loan yourself I like to diversify, and I currently fund over 200 different loans over the course of a year and a half.  Much like a car payment or a house payment the borrower pays the loan off every month so as an investor you get paid out every month in principal and interest. Of course, the house takes a cut as well and that’s generally around 1-2% depending on the loan. The rate on the loans are usually between 5%-30% interest rates based on the borrower’s credit score, previous lines of credit, income etc. etc. Obviously the higher the interest rate the higher the risk of defaulting the loan, and the lower the interest rate the less likely the borrower is to default. Below is a quick snapshot of how my portfolio looks in terms of active notes, defaults, late notes, and fully paid notes.

lending club notes

Now generally I take a rather aggressive approach to my notes and my average interest rate is around 15-18% overall. That can explain some of the defaults I’ve had as they are a higher risk loan, per usual with investing the greater the risk the greater the reward.

What really turned me on to Lending Club and this platform of investing (peer to peer lending) is the monthly payments. Dividend stocks are great, and I have quite a bit of cash flow from them (currently $275/year as we speak) however only a few of them pay me monthly. Having a monthly cash flow allows me to compound my gains 4x faster than a quarterly dividend stock which most of them are quarterly. I also am more fluid with withdrawing money with this platform which leads into my next point. I am investing heavily in this platform to passively pay my rent in the spring semester. You heard that right while it won’t be all interest based (in fact its mostly principal based) I will attempt to use this platform to make a nice 6% or more return while being able to pull my money out and pay rent every month. This obviously has lots of risk and I have back up plans in place in the event most of my loans default however from what I’ve learned in the last year and a half this has been a pretty reliable strategy, and of course I make passive income while I am doing this with a decent return.

Now let’s back up a minute. Most of you are probably thinking I’ve got to be pulling in some big bucks to pay rent with this right! If any of you rent out there you’re probably thinking this is quite a stretch. If you didn’t see in any of my previous posts my rent here in my college town is dirt cheap I’m talking $275 a month + utilities which generally rounds out to $350/month. As of my last monthly payment update I am currently bringing in $195 in principal and interest a month! I’m not done yet either, the snowball has started to roll, I dumped in almost $3,000 this summer into my portfolio and when I get my bonus here soon another $1,000+ will go in + I’m starting to get monthly payments from the loans I purchased this summer. Come October/November I will be approaching that first tier of rent ($275). Not too shabby considering a 6% return on a passive income and its monthly.

With this next small deposit coming in this week I will be at ~230 notes and I am estimating I will need 315 or so to cover the $275 a month. Let’s take a quick look at my account summary, this first picture is adjusted account value which includes the defaults and the late notes.

lending club adjusted

This second picture does not account for late notes and shows a higher rate of return.

lending club no adjust

My account is out of whack at the moment, with the large influx of new notes there is quite a few that haven’t started paying out yet because they are so new. Like I said come October/November that should all get settled in and the returns will be coming up as the monthly payment number starts ringing true and all my loans start paying out.

As a disclaimer I am not a financial consultant and all investments carry risk. I am simply showing you all what I am doing and why I think it will work. Of course, I’d like to hear what you have to say. I know quite a few of my followers have been asking questions about this platform and the pros and cons of it. I have another post from way long ago on why I like this platform so much and you can read that post right Lending Club Review.

Have a great day and I can’t wait to hear from you guys!

Stock Portfolio update 9/14/18

Lots of people on Instagram ask what I am invested in or what others are invested in. Today we’ll go over all my positions and what I’m looking into in the future.

I currently have $9,750 funded in my Robinhood portfolio, however with dividends and profits I have made $670.92 throughout my time investing. I began investing with Robinhood in December of 2016 and have been growing my account ever since. My final funding round will be to round out my account to $10,000 by the end of September and I will not be putting any more money into the account for quite awhile after that. The screenshot below was taken a few days ago showing my account balance, you may notice that it is down a little bit from the $9,750 + $670 profit, but that’s alright I’ve dealt with both highs and lows of my portfolio balance.

IMG-2940.png

We’ll deep dive into some of my larger positions, first Chesapeake Energy (CHK) this was one of my first investments when I started investing and I have added and cost average the position down quite a bit over time. As you can see here we are down a little bit but nothing to worry about. I plan to continue to cost average a bit and try to sell some of my position when we reach around 20% profit or so.

IMG-2942.png

Another large position I own is Ulta Beauty (ULTA) this one has been a wild ride for sure. I owned it when it hit its all time high of ~$312 ish and I have also held it through its lowest point in some time dipping below $200. The market finally came back around to the beauty retailer and it is currently a decent little profit as you look at the cost average and return rate below. They have significant raised 12-18-month price targets of this stock and I plan to exit around $335 which would net a 30% profit or thereabouts.

IMG-2944.png

Another large position I own is Realty Income (O) I have owned this stock for a considerable time as well and it is a key player in my dividend income. In case you are unfamiliar with this stock, it is a monthly dividend paying REIT stock. It yields about 4.75% at my current cost average and has been a key factor and the liquidity of my portfolio when I don’t have funds coming into the account. I plan to hold this position for the foreseeable future and anytime it does dip down I plan to cost average down and buy more. A great example of this is when the 10-year bond was over 3% and many dividend stocks including O took a big hit as investors flocked to the high bond yield and security they provide.

IMG-2943.png

The above three positions are the largest in my portfolio, I would like to also include a few key stars to my portfolio below.

My apple position below is probably one of my best-timed trades. It was after the little correction in February and I picked up the cheapest Apple stock since October 2017, only issue… I couldn’t buy more, I was out of funds and couldn’t justify selling any portions of my other positions. As you can see I think going heavy into Apple at that time would have been the move to make but why cry over spilt milk.

IMG-2948.png

I also dabble in options trading, I’m not the greatest at it and I’ve lost a little bit of money and made a little bit as well. Below you can see my current options spread, I sold some of the SNAP puts for 40-115% profit today however the puts were very inexpensive, so I only really made like $10 off them.

IMG-2941.png

Ford (F) is another one of my large positions, currently at 100 shares with a cost average of $10.74 the blue oval isn’t doing too well for me. (-12%) I have been holding and growing my ford position for awhile now and I enjoy the nice dividends, (currently yields 5.6% based on cost average) again this is a huge part of my liquidity and fluidity of my portfolio in the coming months.

Proctor and Gamble is another proud pick up by yours truly. At a cost average of $74.40 we are up around 11% + a solid 3.8% yielding dividend. I picked this up in May 2018 at its lowest price it had in 2 years, another play with great timing, unfortunately I only purchased 2 shares and just like my Apple position I wish I bought more.

IMG-2949.png

Here are my recent deposits and dividends, I put $1,750 into my robinhood portfolio this summer and have collected lots of dividends as well. I am continuing to increase my forward dividend and hoping to reach $1,000 in passive income received for 2018. I am looking into further expanding my positions in Chinese stocks (JD, BABA) as well as Facebook (FB)

IMG-2950

stock portAs always let me know what you think and what positions you currently have!

 

Passive Income overview 9/5/18

Passive Income is all the rage these days, with ecommerce blowing up, YouTube, podcasts, blogs, investing etc. there are lots of reason why it should be something to think about. Let’ s dive into it and see what it is all about!

Passive income is income resulting from cash flow received on a regular basis, requiring minimal to no effort by the recipient to maintain it. (Wikipedia)

That sounds amazing! Minimal to no effort and receiving cash from it, but its not quite that simple. Passive income often requires either initial upfront energy, effort, and time or initial upfront cash.

My expertise is with the initial upfront cash portion, so we’ll get into that. I have been collecting data on my passive income for over a year now. I currently receive passive income in the form of interest payments from Lending Club, my savings account, stock dividends, stock interest payments, and I guess money saving apps as well. I won’t go into that last one in depth as I am saving that for an article in the future. Hopefully if you’ve been following me for awhile or are at all familiar with investing you understand what a stock dividend is. Essentially you own a dividend paying stock a every quarter or for every month you receive a little gift from the company in the form of a monetary payout for being their stockholder. I also receive some interest payments from my stocks when people short the stocks I own. Between my savings account interest, stock interest, dividends from both Robinhood and Stash I have received $186.37 this year. Not too shabby most would say, but this does come at a price to the tune of ~$12,500 invested in the above-mentioned platforms. The other vehicle I use for passive income is Lending Club. Currently I have received $233.74 in interest payments this year through that platform and that is to the tune of about $4,000 ish invested. A little calculator work later and we are at $420.11 this year in passive income, or about $46.68 per month.

I’m proud of that number to say the least but there’s more to come and in fact my goal for 2018 was to make $1,000 in passive income this year. There is still along way to go to reach that $1,000 mark and less than 3 months till the ball drops and we are standing in 2019.

My plan to get there is already in the works, I have a sizeable position building in Lending Club, in fact there is quite a lot of notes (loans) that haven’t paid me yet because they are so new. When that all comes clicking together and I continue to add to that platform I expect my interest payment payouts to sky rocket. I think I’ll put in another $1,000 into that platform or so and will be reinvesting the principals and interest payments to snowball that passive income stream and make it larger.

The other side of the coin is my stocks and etf’s I own. I have added around $750 into my stash positions and most of those pay dividends. I’ve also added $1400 to my robinhood portfolio and a decent chunk of that has gone to dividend stocks. I plan to continue to add to both and make profits on my positions to reinvest into dividend stocks as well as reinvest the dividends back from where they came from.

The goal for this is to reach financial freedom. There are various definitions to this but for my purpose it is to create passive income streams that are greater than my active income (the money I make from working). When you reach this and assuming you account for inflation, cost of living increasing etc. you can effectively retire. Now of course I don’t plan to retire super early and go live on a beach or anything like that, my mission is much bigger than that, however that is the ultimate plan.

You might be taking a look at this and scratching your head like, “Brandon, you’ve got a long way to go to replace your standard income if you aren’t even at $1,000 a year yet” and you are absolutely correct. My stock portfolio currently yields around 3%, for a modest $40,000 a year to live on my portfolio would have to be around $1.3 million at that same yield to produce that. That’s a lot of motherfucking money to reach financial freedom if you ask me.

That’s why I am looking into investing in real estate when I build my capital up. With real estate’s monthly cash flow and leverage assuming a modest 5% return not accounting for increasing rents or refinancing or anything like that an $800,000 property would yield $40,000 a year and with a 25% down payment of $200,000 you could control that. That looks much more attainable to me.

Using Grant Cardone’s 40% rule, profits from my investments, and existing passive income streams that will grow that should be attainable within a few years if all goes right.

As Warren Buffett said, “If you don’t find a way to make money while you sleep, you will work until you die.”

Now are these passive income streams passive, no. I actively invest in the stock market, I do research on the positions I take, I check lending club frequently and hand pick my loans that I invest in etc. But all in all they are pretty passive. Real estate on the other hand isn’t very passive until you get to the big leagues and can afford a property manager.

Grant’s new real estate investing book is in route to my door in STL and I will be giving that a read very soon and I plan to implement his plan and to go big on my first deal. We’re talking 24-32 units costing $1.4- 2.0 million requiring a down payment in the neighborhood of $500-700k. Like I said large upfront capital or large up-front work, time, energy.

I should also mention what I am doing right here follows that other method that I haven’t gone over. This blog while it does not produce any income and actually never has produced any income for me may be able to one day. Consider how much time I’ve spent (10 months, 60 blog posts, advertising, Instagram etc.) to get it to this point and still haven’t made a dime with it. That’s what I am talking about in terms of up front time, energy, and effort.

It will not be easy whatever passive income route you choose, but with a good strategy and the work you need to put into it the prize is pretty frickin nice.

Let me hear your passive income journey!

B^2

Summer Plans Review

On May 1st I wrote a post titled “Summer Plans” today I will review what steps I took to achieve these goals and aspirations and how you can too. First and foremost, to achieve these goals and aspirations you of course have to have these goals and aspirations and not just in your head but somewhere written down where you will see it often. If you follow me on Instagram @bsquared.website you can see I write my goals down in my notes and I post and look at them constantly. If you have good goals that are designed to get you to your end goal you will be in good shape.

  1. I am going to absolutely crush this internship/sales position. I mean crush it! This is the first time in my life that I will get paid on commission meaning every minute I am not working or trying to sell is a wasted minute. That goes beyond the job as well, I also have this blog and an Instagram, and I will continue to expand my social media presence and further build my personal brand.

In terms of Instagram and this blog I build my Instagram presence from 142 posts to 266 currently. I went from 39 blog posts to now 59. I wish I could’ve bumped up the blog post number quite a bit but it’s a process and takes some time. As far as the internship is concerned we will highlight later as I am still collecting checks and making sure everything goes as planned. How did I do this? I kept setting goals to increase these two metrics. Not the best strategy ever but I wanted more content, I will build on this content later and add more value for my viewers, that will be in the goals for the first half of September. 

2. I want to move away from the umbrella of financial security of my parents. They have done a fantastic job providing for me all my life and I feel obligated to lighten their load. I am making it a goal of mine to work harder than ever before to obtain scholarships and other means to provide for my schooling. My parents have also paid for my housing during college and pending the results of my friend meeting with his landlord tomorrow I should be moving out the fraternity house and plan to pay my rent and all necessary living expenses. I also came up with my method to do so. I have talked about Lending Club before on this blog but for those of you who haven’t read about it yet you can reference this post about it “Lending Club Review”.

 I was unsuccessful in obtaining scholarships, I realized I missed the time frame for most scholarships that would cover the 2018-2019 school year. I am living with a roommate and am no longer in the fraternity house. I am still working toward using lending club as my vehicle for funding my rent and utilities. I am currently making about $165/month from this method and I am still funneling money towards it. I mentioned in an IG post that approx. 31% of my portfolio I have not collected payments from because they are so new. This just goes to show that this takes time for it to materialize. Ideally by October we will be near the target and will let the monthly cash flow pay for my rent. How did I do this? I had a problem – paying $350 for rent and utilities a month ( I know some of you wish you had this problem cause Rolla is dirt cheap) . I wanted to find a solution that would make paying this easier and be able to make money while still paying. I was already using the vehicle (Lending Club) and I just had to commit to it. It had to have certain criteria (safe, familiar with it, monthly cash flow, easily withdraw-able etc.) then I put the money into it and I am still putting money into it. 

  1. I have also began looking at investment properties in my college town, with the hopeful influx of money I make this summer this may finally become a reality and I have also explained some of those plans in a previous post linked here.

This is just a little bit out of my reach, with a 20% down payment we are looking at $20,000 or so and I just don’t have that unless I were to liquidate all my funds. I also didn’t make the stock gains and investment gains that I planned to. I am focusing most of my money and energy into other forms of passive income like Lending Club and dividends. This will keep paying me over the school year and keep making money and fund all my activities. How did I do this? I didn’t sometimes you just need to know when to much is too much. I’m all about pushing hard for your goals and what will bring you closer to success but there’s just not enough to go around. 

  1. This will also be the first summer where I will be relatively free while I have been this interested in improving my life for the years to come. On my co-op I did not start investing until very late and then I returned to school and was again very busy with my other obligations. While on my internship I was taking 9 credit hours of summer class which took a very large toll on my time and extracurricular efforts. I lived an endless cycle of work, working out, and then studying and doing homework during the 5-day work week and then my Sunday’s were typically consumed in school work as well. This is another very exciting aspect of this summer that I can hopefully take advantage of.

This did not happen as planned. In theory when you are only door knocking 5 hours a day that doesn’t sound too bad. However, all the time I spent on returning phone calls, text messages, emails, keeping everything updated and documented was sizeable. I didn’t push myself as hard as I should have and I did my fair share of sleeping in and slacking off.  Why do I do this? Because knowledge is power. The more I know the better decisions I can make. The better chance I have of succeeding. 

  1. I intend to learn more than I ever have this summer as well. I have an ambitious reading goal this summer of 10 books which is crazy to think about since I have not read for leisure in years but the value that it has been bring to my life is incredible and I have learned so much already and I can’t wait to learn more. If you have any suggestions I am open to them all but I will most likely need to focus in on something related to what I would like to pursue later in my life, namely entrepreneurship, business, investment property and real estate, and investing.

I did learn quite a bit this summer from my internship, podcasts and books I read. The numbers won’t show it in terms of books I’ve read but I continue to learn and I am putting more effort into that during the school year. Refer to above italic text.

  1. I would like to make a strong effort to help my fraternities recruitment efforts this summer. Due to the new structure of our recruitment and pledgeship process this summer will be the ultimate factor to our future success and I would like to give my time, effort and talent to this endeavor. Not that I haven’t helped in the past, but I see the high importance of this task, but it will also give a chance to develop my new skills.

Unfortunately, I did not put as much effort into this as I should have during the summer and during the fall. I did a lot behind the scenes in terms of creative thinking and problem solving. I also set up events, but I did not really kill it like I did the year before in terms of actual recruiting. I believe this was just me getting older and wanting to have some fun for occasionally. Why did I do this? Because I feel obligated to share my knowledge and experience in this position to help out the current Recruitment Chair. I also think the ROI on the time and effort is well worth it. 

  1. I believe this summer will also allow me to network more than I have in the past and I have given up some of those opportunities for my other obligations in the past. Again, with all that I have learned this school year I believe this will be a key aspect in my ultimate success later in life and the more I can network and connect with the others the more opportunities will present themselves.

I did network when I could with my fellow interns, coworkers, and customers. Again, with my work schedule and other obligations it wasn’t as much as I wanted to. I do have 2 great references for my resume which will be key in my job hunting here to come, my immediate supervisor and my sales manager. Two of the best references I have had so far all created by networking. Why did I do this? Its not what you know its who you know. Ever hear that saying before? While I think what you know is important the message is clear and my references I listed in my resume will help me out dramatically and all the connections I have made will help me in the future. 

We are still pushing hard towards the end of the month. Keep your eyes open for more blog posts, more Instagram posts, more money and hopefully no problems. I’ll keep you guys updated!

As always, I would love to hear all your comments!

B^2

 

Strategic plan ahead

I took this from a homework assignment I completed today. Its a pretty raw form and I rambled and the grammar isn’t great. It does give a general overview of what I plan to do and how I am trying to get there.

My strategic plan for the next 20-25 years looks like this:

(Ages subject to change, general outline given)

Age 22: Where I am at currently, game plan is to graduate S&T in May 2019 with the Eman and Mechanical degree and have a technical sales job with a competitive pay plan and great benefits.

Age 25: Build a solid foundation from the first job and possibly move to another company or make moves in the company I start with. Begin building a real estate portfolio (investment properties) and build a passive income stream while maintaining solid performance at my new job or the higher position I am moved to.

Age 30: Continue to build passive income through the real estate portfolio. Increase passive income to a point where I could maintain a minimal lifestyle with just the earnings from that portfolio. Start own business or seek new ventures as the opportunities present themselves at that time (2026).

Age 35: Build out the side business/own business/ new venture to create another sustainable stream of income. Ideally have at least 3 high flow streams of income with 2/3 being relatively passive. Begin giving back to the people and organizations that made me who I am. (parents would be first ideally when I am 25ish, SLUH wrestling, Sigma Chi Fraternity, Boy Scouts of America, philanthropic endeavors etc.)

Age 40: Ideally many streams of income have formed by now between stock portfolios/dividends, real estate portfolios, 2 or 3 businesses, any job that I still work, etc. Continue to give back to philanthropies, organizations, start to mentor or guide those that could benefit from my knowledge and experience. I’m sure kids are already in the picture by now and set them up for success.

Age 45: Passive income would be enough to sustain a comfortable lifestyle if I choose not to work. I would still in some way shape or form work as that’s just who I am. Continue with multiple streams of income, various companies or side businesses I’ve started partnered with. Consult for other businesses, organizations etc. again benefiting from my various roles and positions and knowledge I have gained throughout the years. Continue to give time, energy, and effort to those around me to ensure their own success. Be a family man. Make a difference in the world, not just those around you in the present but for those that are in the future and still to come.

Internship Finances Overview

I wrote an article titled “Personal Finance Overview 7/17/18” reviewing my expenses and spending through my internship this summer. Today I will wrap up how the summer went in terms of my spending and earning. Below is a master picture of the expenses.

finances2

If you haven’t read the previous post mentioned take 5 minutes to catch up and get familiar, the link is above. In term of the food column we brought the average down from $300 to around $265 ish this comes out to $60 a week or so. This has been very inline with my previous tracking throughout the summers. For those of you who are wondering how in the hell can I eat on $60 a week the answer is eggs, milk, brown rice, oats, chicken, ground beef, protein bars. That is pretty much all I ate all summer. Very simple very cheap. I also rarely eat out, and normally don’t purchase coffee while I’m out.

Gas money remained the same. Slightly under $200 a month, ~$45 a week. I never tracked mileage this summer, but I believe I drove over 5,000 and a decent portion of that was city driving. Not much I could have done about that, but I do plan to write off about half of my mileage for work.

Fun money! I mentioned last post about a party I was throwing and how this column was going to shoot up and it did. Landing at $260 a month or about $60 a week, which is inline with last summer. If you take out the party $115 a month in fun money. I plan to use a number around there as my benchmark for my budget for the school year. I’m sure this past week and all the drinking and partying we did we’ve already passed it but you can try your best.

For the gym I mentioned before that I had a large upfront cost and it would slowly work its way down and it has. It made it down to $65 a month. Not too bad considering the gym membership with tax came out to $35+ and going through tons of mass gainer all summer.

Girlfriend column came down as expected finishing at $200 and change. Not sure if this is an accurate number considering the plane tickets included and being further away from her this summer (aka not seeing her as often). I’m sure Christmas, birthdays and little surprises will keep this averaged somewhere around there.

Bullshit: Managed to bring this one down a bit, from $1150/month, to $1,000/month. Again had 2 rents being paid for a short period, utilities, speeding ticket and other essentials for my job. As of right now I still have not paid August electric nor have I received any money back from my deposit. I do go home Labor Day weekend so I may have a small check waiting for me when I get back.

finances3

I stopped tracking this spreadsheet on August 11th, the day after my last day on the job. I have since still worked a little in terms of answering phone calls, emails. Text messages and finishing up my last deal (got that one done today!). My cost of living came out to be $1993/month. I don’t pay for my insurance (thanks mom and dad) or anything like that so naturally its going to be lower than most other people. I don’t think that’s too terrible considering the average cost of living in the U.S is about $45k. I was at $2135 in the prior article. Now there is some skewed data, I try to finish the internship with little to no food left, usually no gas left, etc. it doesn’t account for the continuity of living and the average cost of living. However around $2,000/month wouldn’t be a bad guess.

finances4

My monthly conversion for what I was paid comes out to $3,700 a month. I do still have more money on the way and I should be able to finish out at a total of $17,000 made. A little bit of math later (13 weeks of work * 4 = 52 weeks, $17k * 4 = $68k year equivalent). My goal was to make over $60k salary equivalent and I should achieve my goal assuming all the deals go through and I get the bonus I was promised.

A little bit more math real quick to look at Grant Cardone’s 40% rule:

$68,000 * 0.78 = $53,040       (22% tax for single person 2018)

$53,040 * 0.6 = $31,824         (40% of your after-tax income goes to “saving to invest”)

Live on $31k a year, put $21k in the sacred accounts, 5 years till $100k the minimum Mr. Cardone advises to invest.

I’ve proven I can live at $24,000 a year or there abouts with my frugal living, and I have the willpower to stick to the goal. Now the average pay coming out of my school with my degree is around $65,000 but I am sure we can do a little bit better than that. Hopefully with a good job or a side hustle or two, perhaps passive income that I’ve been building we can accelerate the 40% rule and build real wealth!

If you’re curious I ran some more numbers with the 40% rule and the current tax brackets for a single person.

40 rule.JPG

As always let me know what you think and what you want to see more of!