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!

The Last Splurge

If you follow Grant Cardone at all he preaches increasing income above all else. The 2nd step in the process is to reduce taxes. I have done a relatively good job of that thus far, my internship allowed me to dictate how much income I make because it was a 100% commission job. I have tracked all receipts and have started researching how to minimize my tax bill this upcoming spring as well. The third step in his cycle is to save specifically “save it all”. This requires you to live your daily life without increasing your cost of living while you increase your income.

We see people violating this rule every day, some guy gets a promotion at work makes an extra $10k a year and goes out and celebrates by purchasing a new BMW. That promotion and pay increase did not make any difference since he increased his cost of living. He probably would have been better off getting a $5k pay increase and not blowing the money on material things.

I never was into blowing my money, here and there I would “treat yo self” but nothing drastic. Last summer at the end of my internship which paid me quite well and was a decent increase from the previous year ($150 more a week) I bought my only watch and a piece of wall art. That was my form of treating myself which came out to be about $250.

This summer by the time it is over and with bonuses included as well as any lingering payments I should avg a pay increase of about $350 more a week (no living stipend though) than last summer. I should be able to reduce my tax bill because of my 1099 status this year substantially. (I received about $1300 back last year, but I also had taxes taken out every paycheck and I am not taxed under my current pay system yet.) So, check box 1 and 2 for Mr. Cardone. I should also note I didn’t upgrade my standard of living during this time. I currently live in the cheapest apartment my roommate and I could find that would be able to accommodate a 3-month lease. It is cockroach infested and is pretty hood for a $400 a person month rent ($450 for 3-month lease). I drive the same car, I wear the same clothes, I buy the same food, I buy the same beer, and spend the same amount at the bars.

Onto box #3 spending: Looking over my expenses which I track to the penny, we’re looking pretty good. I went over them in a blog post about halfway through the summer and you can check them out here. I spent some extracurricular on/with my girlfriend for the vacation and everything like that. I also spent some money at the bars and on booze and other non-constructive habits and vices, but that was minimal. Overall, I didn’t blow any of my money. That is until this upcoming weekend.

I plan to spend a bunch of money when I return to home and go shopping with the girlfriend Saturday. I WANT new clothes, new shoes, a new suit, and some other Knick knacks. I say want and not need because that’s just what they are. The clothes I wear are fine but perhaps a bit dated. Some of my shorts and shirts I often wear I purchased 3-4 years ago and some are not in the best condition. I’d still wear them though, so it isn’t necessary I purchase new ones. Essentially this shopping trip is to purchase my “adult clothes” things that I will need in the future after I graduate college. That is why I call it the last splurge. This theoretically should get me the next two years or so of my life in terms of clothing and what not and would be considered the “treat yo self” portion of my saving.

Some of these purchases have been a long time coming for example the suit I currently wear I’ve owned for about 5 years, and I received a gift card for the purchase of a new suit last Christmas. The watch I purchased previously was intended to go with this new suit I plan to purchase. With upcoming interviews for full time jobs and the networking, events and other occasions I plan to attend you could consider this an investment in my dated wardrobe.

So, what do you all think? A waste of time and money or a much-needed update to prepare myself for what comes in my future.

 

 

Dividend Update 8-5-18

Dividends have been an important goal of mine all summer, for those of you who don’t know I am a student so for the next several months (August-May) I will produce very little income because I do not work during the school year. I may however pick up a side hustle in the Spring as I will have lots of free time due to a low-class load and less rugby responsibilities. For me to fund my investment accounts and keep things fluid more or less, I need to either A) sell my positions for profit and reinvest the earnings or B) produce dividend income to fund new positions.

Obviously, I do intend to profit from my investments however we don’t always know what lays ahead in the stock market and what opportunities may present themselves, so dividend income is safer bet. Below is where we left off from the 6-3-18 dividend update:


Ticker cost avg percent yield   share # year equivalent
CEFL $17.72 14.73%   11 $28.71
OHI $27.12 9.73%   5 $13.20
AAPL $157.51 1.85%   1 $2.92
PG $74.40 3.86%   2 $5.74
F $11.30 5.31%   60 $36.00
STAG $25.85 5.49%   20 $28.40
O $55.78 4.71%   27 $71.01
CBL $4.56 17.54%   5 $4.00
TTS $6.73 2.97%   15 $3.00
        a year in dividends $192.98
        percent of total 2.41%

 

Forward projection of dividends was $192.98 yielding 2.41% with 66% of that comprised of monthly paying dividend stocks. Respectable but nonetheless I wanted to improve my monthly income as well as my overall dividend income.

As of 8-5-18 here are the current stats:

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
        $239.22
        2.81%

 

Forward projection of dividends at $239.22 (increase of 24% in 2 months), yielding 2.81% on the entire portfolio. Approximately 58% of dividend payouts comprised of monthly paying dividends. I should also note that I also improved my dividend outlook on the investing app “Stash” I never crunched the numbers on that, but I added 2 positions that had dividend yields and I have another position I plan to add here shortly.

Overall, I am very pleased with the increase on all fronts, the snowball has essentially started to roll, and we should see significant payoffs in the future. I would eventually like to yield 3%+ on my Robinhood portfolio however my 2 largest positions currently do not pay a dividend.

If you follow my Instagram you may have seen the table that compares 2017 to 2018 dividends per month. (If you don’t follow my Instagram it is @bsquared.website) I started tracking dividends in June 2017 and comparing June and July of ’17 vs. ’18 you can see I have doubled the dividend income in both months and August also posts a double (soon to be triple) return as well.

As you can see we have quite a bit of momentum built up and I am looking to continue that trend. I do believe we will have a tough time achieving the goal of $500 dividend income in 2018. (Currently at $171.49) The progress has been great thus far and I will be adding approximately $1250 to the Robinhood portfolio in the coming weeks and pending the opportunities I see should increase dividends even further.

As always let me know what you think! This is not a strictly dividend portfolio, I try to have some growth and value plays in there as well. As you can tell by my situation however the cash flow and fluidity help my situation tremendously. Feel free to drop a comment of reach out to me on IG or twitter @bsquaredweb10

Thanks!

B^2

Premier Roofing Update 7/31/18

Hey I’m back and its only been 8 days but lots of good things have happened so let’s jump right into it. The previous update from 7/23/18 had the following stats below, followed by the new stats:

Presented Roofs: 86                97

Signed Roofs: 25                    43

PFYNR’s: 9                            18

Built: 5                                    8

Massive massive improvement thanks to an 11-roof investment property lead and success in the new neighborhood. I still have lots of potential customers to follow up with and PFYNR’s to close. This next week and a half is going to require 100% effort to achieve the results I want but it is entirely possible. My new goal is to make $17,000 from this internship and while I am quite a ways out according to my current stats ($6,600 made) I have a $3000 check coming Friday, I am currently at $1200 dollars made this week with 2 more days to go. I have $2200 riding on the PFYNR’s for the rental properties, as well as a bonus of $2000+ I will surely hit by the end of this week and will be received after I have completed the internship. With all that factoring in it is not unreasonable for me to hit that figure above! Again, an all-out effort is going to be required and I’m grinding it out every day knocking doors, following up with customers doing my best to crush it and keep pushing for the top of the leaderboard. Speaking of which I am about 5th in the company currently which is much better than about 25th which was the case in the previous update. I am gunning for the top spot and I believe that if my pipeline comes through and I continue to be successful in this new neighborhood that I will have a strong chance of achieving that. The #1 spot is held by a fellow intern at the KC branch I work at with 53 sales. I believe this is his last week working which provides a terrific opportunity to make up the ground next week!

As always, I will keep you posted and show you how it all turns out this summer. Stay tuned!