$10 For A 40 Hour A Week, Do I Still Travel?

Let me begin by asking a very simple yet a pertinent question? How much is time really worth to you? Or what is the value of your time?

The answer to the first question will, of course, be similar for most of us. Time is really worth for all us. It is because of its finite self and the limited shelf life we all come with. And that quickly takes me to the second question. What is its value?

Can time be quantified?

The subject for this article will answer it best or perhaps it will give it its best.

Let’s begin with some math first.

A 1-hour commute can roughly translate into 60 miles one way. That would mean 120 miles two ways for a $10 an hour job. So supposedly while traveling let us assume you will burning roughly 7 gallons of gas at $2.5 per gallon. That is $17.5 of gas every day. Now, that figure can vary from $17.5 to $20. And I am talking every day. For an $80 a day earning you will spend almost $20 on gas does not add up to a good career move.

Traveling times are a sheer wastage of limited resources. I do agree, left with no other choice one has to travel great distances or risk the effects of unemployment. However, even if a minimum wage job is available at a distance which is quite comfortable, my advice would be to go for it. Unless that travel time is compensated by an extraordinary rise in pay or a career defining move, it really is not worth wasting so much time.

Instead, save that two and a half hours, which ideally would have been spent in transportation, and use it to diversify. Make use of that time to learn a new skill, add something new to your resume, probably exercise and rest, the list is endless.

So can time be quantified?

Yes, it surely can. Depends on whether you do want to make an attempt to use it wisely. The return you get in terms of financials, knowledge or even emotionally does it make it a worthwhile effort.

For centuries, mankind has been in the grips of the time versus money dilemma. Do I save two hours on a direct flight or $90 while taking a direct flight? It is not an easy question to answer primarily because we are yet to ascertain the priorities at hand. Set it first and then automatically you will be able to judge it.

Is Renting a Car More Pocket Friendly Than Buying

The straight and simple answer to this extremely tricky question is a big YES!

Renting a car is always more cost effective than buying a new one because you are able to save on the huge investment that you actually make on buying an asset that depreciates with time. If we are to talk in a strictly financial language then it is never wise to buy assets that depreciate in value; however, it is always good to buy assets like property and shares that increase in value.

It is really hard to not fall prey to the temptation of buying your own car, especially when you are unable to hail a taxi during the rush hours. If you are able to actually count the number of days in a year when you felt the need of a car real badly then you will be surprised to find that it is not more than 10 to 15 days in a year. Do you really need to buy a car that you will need only 15 days in a year? No logic behind buying a car exists unless you have a lot of extra money to waste on assets that depreciates in value over time.

According to the statistics, a new car depreciates by 40% of its list price in the very first year itself. By the end of the third year, the value drops by 60% of the list price and this keeps falling till your car is valued not more than junk iron sheets. Why do you want to waste your money investing on something that really does not add any value to your life?

Buying a car is probably the dumbest idea and an absolute waste of money when you have many other options. Renting a car can save you hundreds of dollars a month and you can go step further to even get a car on lease. Both these make a lot of sense than just blindly buying a car. Lease is a long term rental deal that lets you drive a car for a fixed monthly price. In the US, people are more into driving around in the latest models than actually buying them. Now, there isn’t a better deal than renting the car and driving to wherever they wish.

Renting or leasing a car does not make you the owner of the car but you definitely save hundreds of dollars while driving some of the latest models on the road.

Home And Real Estate: How Will You Be Able to Buy a House

Are you dreaming of having your own house? Do you also ask yourself the question, “Will I ever be able to buy a house?” Well, sooner or later, you will be ready to buy one. But if you still do not know how and you are still wondering if you could really buy a house, there are many ways of how you can get help.

house

Home and real estate are already one of the most competitive industries today and it is surely not easy to find the best home and real estate today. Below is a guide that you can follow before buying and how to can check if you can afford to buy the house you want.

Where to Start

  • Get a deposit together – Normally, you should save up in deposits before buying a home but it will not be hard for you if you seek help from your family to make depositing faster. Mortgages cover percentage of the value of your home which is the Loan to Value (LTV). The deposit is the remaining purchase price that you pay.
  • Check affordability – Look at the cost of homes. Go for the home that you can afford best so that there will be no problems for you when monthly payments come.
  • Check your credit report – It is an off for lenders if they see on your credit report that you have excessive debts  or you always miss your payments. But you can still get a mortgage out of your bad credit. However, it would be better if you get to improve your credit history to increase your chances of getting approved of normal mortgage. You should also understand mortgages first.
  • Find help – Get some help from your family or purchase a home with somebody else who is more likely to be accepted for a mortgage. A joint mortgage can save more deposit and it has an affordable mortgage payment.

How long will you be staying in your home?

Buying a home can incur expensive closing costs. If you are going to stay in that home for many years, these costs may spread over time. But if you are going to sell it after 3 years, the costs may be higher than your rent. In simpler terms, your period of stay has an impact if you should buy the home or just rent.

If you are asking if you will ever be able to buy a house, the answer is yes. You always have the opportunity in home and real estate. All you need to do is be wise and consider the above mentioned factors to go through the process with no hassle.

Normally, what you need to do first is do the math. Scribble the calculations and decide if you are already ready to step into your new home. However, this is easier said than done because numbers are too large when it comes to home and real estate. But with the right approach, you can do this well.

 

10 Awesome Tips to Save Money on Groceries

We often don’t realize that we are spending a larger chunk of our income on groceries and end up stocking our refrigerators with unnecessary items. Before your food and grocery spending burn irreparable holes in your pocket, it is time to save some on your groceries.

save money on groceries

 

Here is a list of 10 awesome tips to save money on groceries:

  1. Prepare a menu – Planning what you want to eat before running to your nearest store might sound a drab activity but is extremely important if you want to save money on your groceries. Why do you want to end up buying items that you are not going to eat? Prepare a detailed menu so that you know the items you will have to buy.
  2. List standard items – Besides preparing a menu, there are some standard items that you will always require to rustle up a quick meal, breakfast, lunch and dinner. You will never forget the items that are a part of almost all meals or common to several dishes.
  3. Look for sales – There is no better way to save money than buying grocery items during sales. Often the stores put up items for sale and you can get your daily food items at discounted rates.
  4. Buy in-season fruits and vegetables – For staying healthy, we all need to eat fresh vegetables and fruits. However, these are expensive items, especially if you are buying fruits or vegetables that are usually not the season’s produce. Buy only in-season produce as that’s the best way to get your regular dose of fruits and vegetables while not spending a lot of money.
  5. Collect Coupons – There are several online resources to get the best deals on grocery items; you can always collect the coupons to save a lot of money on your grocery purchases. Alternatively, you can also collect the coupons available with magazines and newspapers.
  6. Learn the store policies – Not all stores accept competitor coupons, so you will have to learn about the store policy where you usually purchase your grocery items.
  7. Cut down on the number of monthly store visits – This actually helps you to collect your coupons and visit the store during sales, so you will be able to make a killing. However, you can’t expect such outings more than once or twice in a month, so you will have to cut down on the number of monthly store visits.
  8. Choose your store wisely – Choose the store that offers maximum sales and discounts; a surefire way to save a lot of money on your groceries.
  9. Buy only necessary items – You should always buy the items that you need and nothing more than that. Even though you will be tempted but try to restrict yourselves to the necessary items only.
  10. Don’t take your kids to the store – They are not going to help you in shopping and instead compel you to buy a few items more; leave the kids at home while visiting a store and you will be able to save a few more dollars.

Best Ways to Invest and Utilize Your Money

Certainly, you can come up with several ways of making your investment double in amount. Doubling your investment is a realistic goal because it is something that you can work on continuously. Whatever amount you have on hand, when you decided to invest it to stocks or any particular investment opportunity, you should see to it that it will grow within a given duration of time.

Below are the best methods of investing your fund to double its amount.

  • Real estate business

Today, most individuals begin to realize the importance of getting a home for their family making real estate businesses a great investment choice. As a tangible, this is something that’s  really worth your money. Real estate properties are considered as prime commodities which always has a value in itself.

 

  • Peer-to-peer lending

This investment can make a difference in your life as it gives you many opportunities either as a borrower or as investor. In a peer-to-peer lending, you get a higher return as the investor and the lower rate goes to the borrower. It offers you diverse options for your loan portfolio meaning you have lots of choices to spread out your money to different borrower while allowing it to grow.

 

  • Silver and Gold

If you’re not interested in investing your penny to businesses then you might find it fruitful to capitalize it to precious metals like gold and silver. The value of these metals is closely associated with the movement of dollar in the world market. Although the transition on the price can be very unpredictable, it’s always a good idea to take possession of these metals.

 

  • Treasuries and collectibles

Start collecting antiques, artwork and other valuable treasures. This can be a worthy alternative to investing in stocks. For you to get the most of these collectibles, you have to wait for some time that you can resell it at most reasonable price. With this, you can potentially fetch more money in the future and enjoy a financial gain. Indeed, this is a moneymaking investment in times that the value of dollar is at its lowest point.

 

You may also opt for US Treasury Securities if you want. In fact, your investment is more likely to increase with treasury securities including bonds, bills and notes. Interest rates are higher with this kind of treasury compared to the other types. If you want to get regular updates of the current prices of these treasuries, you may get information from the Treasury’s Portal.

As much as possible, you need to find out yourself the best way at which your money can yield in double or even in triple price. With several options you have in the investment market, you may find it hard to look for the best one for you. Well, it doesn’t really have to be difficult for you because the more choices you have, the more chances of getting the most suitable investment opportunity for you. Start making real investments for a better future. Increase your penny’s value through these ways.

Investment Advice: Is An Affiliate Sales Website Worth the Effort?

We are often asked strange investment questions around what makes for a good investment. And the truth of the matter is a lot of things do it just depends on your circumstances and what your goals are.

When considering an investment it is important to understand the following:
– Will it increase in value
– Is it liquid
– When do I need to cash out of this
– How big is the market for this investment
– Do I understand everything about the investment

In the case of running an affiliate sales website it depends on how much time you want to invest into it. It can be the easiest thing in the world to start but to stay ahead of an ever changing SEO and digital landscape it can be a nightmare. It is easy to monetize with CPA networks including click bank but staying relevant and ahead of the curve in digital trends can be rough. When considering any investment always do your research. In the case of affiliate sales you should start with blackhatworld.com and warriorforum.com. Two of the most well known SEO and affiliate information sites.

If you decide after reading on those forums that an investment in affiliate sales website is worth the effort than you should go ahead an launch a website. I recommend Justhost.com. It is simple, cheap, and comes with a free domain name.

Once you have the website it is important to keep in mind how you are going to get traffic to your site to make sales. There are three main methods; SEO, PPC, and general traffic buying.

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the most important because it allows you an evergreen stream of customers whom are coming to your site from Google. As part of this it is important to create original and high quality content that Google will analyze and deem worthy of sending people whom Google your search terms to your page. At the same time you need to make sure your website is optimized for optimal search engine crawling and readability. It is useful to use WordPress to make sure your content is just this as you start out.

SEO though can take a long time to start driving traffic. In the interim while your SEO is being built it can extremely useful to launch small PPC and PPV (Pay per click/view) buys. The best to drive highly targeted niche traffic is GoogleAds. Also what could be helpful are TwitterAds and Pinterest Ads. But the best for driving bulk traffic is Facebook ads. Facebook Ads are extremely flexible in targeting and can let you optimize spending easily. If you have money and are willing to lose it you should start here. What’s most important is to test. Test and optimize everything about your page and who you target.

Lastly depending on how big you want to go you can launch old fashioned media buying campaigns. Where you drive traffic from other companies to your site. This is a lot less personal and leads to a lot of waste but can help build your site into a brand if that is your end goal.

When considering all of this an affiliate site can be a very successful business and investment but it will take time and lots of start up money. You need to be prepared to lose some money to make some and there is no guarantee you will ever make any money. If that is something you aren’t prepared for then this may now be the best investment for you. If you still want to pursue an affiliate sales website we recommend you do your research and be prepared to test and optimize for the long run.

Examples of Passive Income

A lot of people wonder about what is passive income and how they too can start earning it. Passive income come’s in all shapes and sizes and if you have a normal portfolio today you most likely are already privy to some.

examples of passive income

Check out the most common examples of passive income below:

1. Stocks that pay dividends and, every quarter, send you a dividend payment.

2. A real estate investment through a partnership. The general partners manage the properties and you, as a limited partner, just collect the rent and any capital gains from property sales.

3. Savings account that accrues interest. Every year or monthly your account will be sent interest payments.

4. Patents or copyrighted material such as songs. Entities that license this intellectual property pay out fees or royalties on a quarterly basis.

There are plenty other types of passive income but the above four are some of the most common examples of passive income and one’s you might already be utilizing today. People’s most common income though is earned income, which is what you get from working a job.

This chart will blow your mind!

Famous tech acquisitions  cost per user
Famous tech acquisitions by cost per user

This crazy cost chart was first found on BrightSide. As you can see by the chart the new acquisition of WhatsApp for the mind boggling price of $19 Billion dollars on a per user price actually looks like a great deal.

The WhatsApp acquisition at a per user price of $35.56 is very inline with Facebook’s other big acquisition of Instagram which when acquired had a per user cost of $28.57. The Instagram deal has turned out to be a major success for Facebook and it looks like so will this WhatsApp purchase. For a lesson in companies who are doing horrible acquisitions just look at Yahoo. Whose acquisitions of Broadcast.com and Geocities on a per user basis were horribly over priced and have done horribly.

Daily Financial Advice Mallard 2-24-2014

Daily Financial Advice Mallard 2-24-2014

Bring extra quarters to work whenever you find a pre-1965 quarter, switch with your own. Each pre-1965 quarter has a melt value of $4.20.

As we have discussed in other articles having a job as a cashier at a store is not glamorous and at times can be downright boring. One of the best ways we have found to pass the time and to possibly make more money is by being on the look out for old coins. Also check if it is ok with your manager first but often times they will just be happy to know their employee is actively looking at every coin while on the job and being good with money is definitely a skill they want to make sure your have as a cashier. Whenever you see a coin that is old or a bill that is old hold on to it might be worth more than “face value.”

Old quarters such as those made prior to 1965 are actually made of silver and as such have a value of the price of silver not the $.25 that the coin is really worth.

What are the Best Ways to Save for College?

Saving money for college is sometimes easier said than done, especially in today’s economy! The first thing a new parent thinks about when a child is born is diapers and bottles. Don’t forget daycare! However, as the child grows so does the cost of living. The parent has education expenses and clothing and food expenses. Not counting every day regular expenses such as the electric and water. It is very important to save for college if you don’t start early it can creep up on you before you know it.

saving for college

Some parents open a savings account when they find out they are having a baby. By opening this account at this early stage you are hoping you can get ahead of the game and have the funds saved for your child to attend the school of his or her dreams. You may even hope that this savings will be large enough to write a check and be done. This can be a great option, if you do not have to use any of the funds for anything else. However, there are other ways for saving money for college.

There is a state sponsored plan by the name of 529 College Savings Plan. This plan offers a tax-deferred flexible way to save money for your child to attend college. This type of plan is for those who believe factors such as tax-free qualified withdrawals, tax-deferred growth, and contribution flexibility as being an important part of a savings plan. The 529 College Savings Plan is beneficial for you and your child.

Another avenue that a person can begin saving money for college is with uniform gifts or transfers to minors. This type of saving for college will allow the transfer of ownership of assets to your child without the added expense of creating a trust fund. Remember to check this type of saving money for college plan before you initiate it because withdrawing money can come with a penalization because of surrender charges.

There are flexible options such as common stocks, CDs, bonds, and mutual funds. Keep in mind these options are taxable. Be sure and do your research before you choose any of the options above. Such as a CD, this option can be a good investment but the rates may be low. This option is FDIC insured because it is considered an asset. You will not have to worry about losing the principle when you need the funds. An important point to remember is that if a CD is not held until maturity there may be penalties incurred.

Saving for college can be nerve racking. However, if you are employed at this time and your company offers Roth IRA and Traditional IRA, this is an option as well. Most people have this type of account so he or she can save for his or her retirement. Before you decide to use this option to fund your child’s college career make sure you have exhausted every avenue. It is important to remember when using this type of savings for education purposes the 10% penalty is waived on the withdrawal if it is before the age of 59 ½ for you (the account holder), spouses, and children or grandchildren. Before you make any decision about saving money for college, ask advice from a financial adviser.