Credit Card Churning Fail: How Not to Lose $500 Worth of Credit Card Rewards

If you’re going to attempt credit card churning (signing up for credit cards and spending the minimum amount necessary to reap the program’s reward), here’s a tip: Make sure you’re keeping up with your spending, even if you have to call the customer care center to make sure you’re on track. Quick story: I signed-up for the Chase Ink Bold credit card on March 16th, 2014 hoping to receive 50,000 bonus points 3 months later. This is when I was on my quest to become a travel writer and credit card slayer. All I had to do was spend $5,000

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Posted in Personal Finance

Taking Action May Increase Your Bottom Line by $40,000

On April 23rd, 2014, my current primary residence was listed on Realtor.com. On May 13th, 2014, my current primary residence went under contract. The initial offer was a $135,900 cash offer with a $2,000 earnest money deposit and no closing cost credits required. I was willing to accept it since it met my “numbers” criteria. Mainly, I would be walking away with at least $33k from the deal, tax-free, since it’s my primary residence. However, my unofficial real estate investment “adviser” suggested I counter the offer with $137, 500 with a required $5,000 earnest money deposit, in addition to getting

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Posted in Personal Finance, Psychology

My Investment Property, After the Rehab

Finally. On April 9th, I first presented the investment property that I recently acquired. After a few hiccups trying to get financing on my own terms so as not to disrupt the closing date of May 13th, 2014, I settled on a hybrid option of using a personal loan and cash for this property. There are plenty of advantages for going this route. I wrote about some of them here. If I can help it, I’d never try to use a mortgage for an investment property again. A primary residence, sure. But my experience with Wells Fargo shows that an

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Posted in Personal Finance

One Morning You May Get Punched in the Face. Here’s Why:

A couple of weekends ago, a friend and I had a hilarious conversation about those of us who don’t know how to mind our own business. Or when we do mind our own business, it’s usually done at the wrong time, which is an inconvenience to others. For example, someone who “speaks-up” in an attempt to correct the person who cuts in line at a theme park will probably be the person who walks away from the opportunity to come to someone’s rescue if that someone is being harassed in the same line. In the former case, cutting in line affects them, while the harassment affects

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Posted in Psychology

Use a Personal Loan for Your Investment Property. Here’s Why:

Yesterday, I wrote about several ways that one can purchase an investment property without using a home mortgage. The post was written in response to Wells Fargo’s underwriting team that wanted to impose red tape on my investment property purchase. Instead of folding to their demands, I figured I’d try other ways to finance my investment property so I wouldn’t have to extend my closing date any more than I had already done. I went to my primary bank, USAA, and looked at all of their personal loan options. When I saw that USAA offered personal loans that could be

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Posted in Personal Finance

Why You Should Buy An Investment Property Without a Mortgage

Should you buy an investment property without a mortgage? The answer is a resounding yes. This is what you should do instead, if you can. FOUR WAYS TO BUY AN INVESTMENT PROPERTY WITHOUT A MORTGAGE 1. Consider paying cash. If you don’t have the cash, then save until you can get the cash. 2. If you don’t have the cash, consider a personal loan from the bank. The interest rate will be much higher than a mortgage, but you’ll have to deal with less red tape when it comes to securing the property. 3.  If you don’t have the credit or income that would approve you

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Posted in Personal Finance

Busy, Busy, Busy. And What Should I Do With My Real Estate Portfolio?

Happy May 1st everyone! You may have noticed that I’ve been absent from the blog. I have plenty to say but I’ve been focusing my efforts else where. I’ve been burning to write a post titled, “How to Live a Champagne Lifestyle on a Water Budget” ever since I was accused of this by the person whose house I decided not to rent. But, that’s another post for another day. I mean, who other than me can write such a prolific post with hundreds of examples, such as how I shop at thrift stores and Ikea to save money? haha. Oh, well. I have too much going on in the next

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Posted in Personal Finance

How to Save Money and Pursue the Job You Love

I have a guest post, How Much Do You Need to Quit the Job You Hate, featured on Untemplater.com. It’s all about how to save up enough money to pursue the job you love. If you are a young, obsessed entrepreneur and you haven’t checked out the content on Untemplater, you are really missing out. The website is all about breaking the proverbial mold and becoming an anti-conformist. My post couldn’t have been featured on a better website.  Its tagline is, “Work where you want…Live How You Want…Be Who You Want to Be.” Hence, my post about quitting your job…eventually…fits well. It lays

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Posted in Career

Purchased a Primary Residence. Here are the Pictures.

I still don’t feel like writing so I figured I’d just share the pictures of my future home. Eventually I’ll write in length about how I evaluated this property…maybe…so if you are interested be sure to sign up for the blog using the subscription form on the right side of this site. I received word today that my offer of $153,000 was accepted by the seller…right on time. I gave the seller until 5pm today to accept. It was a different type of foreclosure but a foreclosure nonetheless. The price was non-negotiable because the listing price was subject to HUD

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Posted in Personal Finance

I Purchased Another Investment Property. Here are the Pictures.

I haven’t written on my blog in a while. Quite frankly, it’s too time-consuming. This isn’t a problem in and of itself, but it tends to be one when it starts to interfere with a lot of other things that I have going on…like traveling, reading, getting ready to relocate to another city, and beginning a new obsession as a real estate investor. Writing a great blog post from the heart can take hours. For now, I’d rather focus that energy on this new real estate mogul obsession. So instead of writing today I’m going to post the pictures of a

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Posted in Personal Finance

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