Friday, March 26, 2010

Get rich off of real estate slowly...or quickly?

I came to the conclusion that once you save up a certain amount of money, it is foolish to continue to pay rent. I feel that if one wanted to amass a fortune, the next step has to be taken. While stocks will get you tons of  money (if you research them carefully) in the long run, but what about something in the short run? Is it me, or am I the only 26 year old that wants to own land? That would be a total bummer if I am.

More than likely, I'm not and there are probably people who own their houses free and clear. I wish to aquire a piece of real estate for the purposes of investing. That is my answer to short run gains. There has been more real estate investors that have gotten rich younger that stock investors. Also I need a more diversified portfolio anyways. So my lastest venture is to aquire a cheap property, take the mortgage and throw it into a high interest yielding CD at over 3% (cough Sallie Mae cough). I have a nest egg built up so paying down the principal while I am gaining interest off the loan along with collecting a refund off the 2010 income tax is genius! And getting the Obama credit  would  not be bad either, but I have a month to land a decent deal for that so that might be a "no-go". In case if you were wondering, at 3% interest on a loan tucked away in a CD would be:

100000 year 0
103000 year 1
106090 year 2
109270.7 year 3
112548.88 year 4
115924 year 5

Now 15K  from not doing anything except holding onto onto that money, I can live with. That would cover my Roth IRA contributions for the next 3 years! (Which it would compound more interest) The only thing I would need from that is a decent IRA plan. Or better yet, compound the money a second time while investing in a Roth from the cashflow of the property! Now let's say I rented out a house at 1K for purposes of simple math and saved that for five years. That would be 60K on top of the 15K earned from interest! Obviously no plan is totally fool proof and there will definately be bumps in the road, but I can safely access that having 120K after taxes after 5 years of doing nothing else but collecting pay checks and upkeeping a property isn't bad. And that is just from a simple game of manipulating interest in your favor. If you have a bulletproof credit score, your obviously going to become even richer from this idea, for you can get the higher loans at the lower rates. BTW this doesn't count for the amount you would make off the sale of a property as you continue to slow pay down the prinicpal!

The number one thing thoughh is being frugal  in a time where being frivolous is so tempting. The rewards are that much greater!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Why Pre-Paid Phones Are Better Than "Smart Phones"

Now when people look at my phone at work, they do not see a person with a lot of money at his disposal. What they see is the phone and its overall "cheapness". Yes, I only pay up to $30 dollars for a phone. The reason why I do this is because getting a smart phone stolen "smarts". I have to say there are a lot of cool apps. for the smartphones, but those phones do not satisfy me. I want something basic in a phone; I don't want it to make coffee for me. Because of this I got a phone that gave me double minutes.

Unfortunately (or fortunately?) that phone was stolen today while I was at work. It was probably just to spite me, but I cannot get by without a phone in my daily life. Low and behold, I found my same phone for $15. That was a super score. I hope everything works out and I can get my minutes transferred over. I am so glad my last phone was $30 instead of $300. I would be eating ramen for a month on that one. That, in a nutshell, is why prepaid phones make smartphones 'tap out'. Tracfone (my carrier) offers good customer service too. I reported my minutes stolen and they gave me minutes doubled for those on my new phone. So now I have 530 minutes (a little under 9 hours) of call time.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Free 2010 Credit Score Here

Hello! Long time not blog! Actually I was in San Francisco at a job interview. But I just got back into Reno about two days ago. While browsing the web today I happen to come across this website where you do not have to submit any credit card info nor pay $15 for a "free" credit score. I believe you can only ask one time per year, but it isn't like I need to ask more than once. Now the credit score relates to the credit report. It is your number which designates whether or not you can get a mortage, credit card, or a loan at a low interest rate. (See the rich really do get richer) The link is for the credit score.

If you want to see your credit report, go to and then pick between the three large crediting firms. Don't ask for a score on the second link unless you honestly feel comfortable giving out your credit/debit card information. If you do feel comfortable, then you have to cancel your information and then wait for the $15 to be processed and reissued to you. I honestly consider this a overall headache to get a score from those companies and prefer using CreditKarma.

On that note, I just realized I am giving away free advertising to these websites, but who cares. The information on those sites are invaluable and everyone should  keep track of their credit score. Am I condoning spam? No. So don't bother me by sending me any. I'll just reject those comments faster than a kid can reject green beens. My view towards spam is synonomus with Girl Scouts trying to sell me cookies: I don't want any.

Tangent aside, frugality will natually lead to a higher credit score.  I do not use credit and I have a good credit rating. Now why is that? Oh right--I pay for everything with cash and assume as little debt as possible. And I pay all my bills on time. Meaning, if you want to increase your score now, you have to assume some responsibility towards paying off debt and paying things on time all the time. Any late payments can damage your score. Any defaults on your mortage would  be the equivilant to kicking your credit score in the groin. While you can legally dodge creditors, you cannot run away from living in the rat race. That is where you will be if you do not pay close attention to all of your financial transactions.

What I like to do is have physical copies of  my bills and my banking as well as having online banking. I do not care if it increases my "carbon footprint", so do not send me hate mail. I consider freedom against financial servitude more important than the tree banch it took to make me my bill. I get a lot of  e-mail daily and I  might actually overlook it. If I do not know that these bills exist, how am I ever going to improve my credit score? The short answer is "I'm not." 

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Facebook Response: UNR To Shut Down?

Well if anyone looked at the Reno rag today, they would have found a rather interesting article about University of Nevada, Reno shutting down their degree programs. This is why I do not totally rely on my degree to get me a job: employeers do not care if you have a Bachlor's of Whatever. Because that is basically what it is. I wanted to learn more about different civilizations and foreign policy. That is why I went to school. Other than that, I actually do need a B.A. degree for getting a visa in Japan; it's the law.

So I do not need to be able to understand foreign policy nor do I need to know anything about  foreign civilizations in Reno. Where would I use it? Where would  I be able to wow the ambassador of pick-a-country? A degree is a piece of paper that says you have certain skills that will hopefully get you a job. I say "hopefully" because it really has only gotten me hourly jobs and job interviews outside the country.

With that being said, there are only key programs that will be saved and those programs [at college] will only be allowed to exist if it makes the university money. Foreign languages will be on the shopping block. Poly sci has to go. Sadistics gone. So any specialist in those areas? Bye-bye. Need a educational counselor for your kid? Look else where. Nevada don't want any. President Glick or emperor Palpantine for lack of a better name, says these programs have to go. So what does that mean for those students? Switch majors or leave. If the major is not profitable, they do not want it. Want someone to give your spider monkey a rabies shot? Sorry can't have vets. This is the kind of mentality that the educational system has. So if you want to amass umpteenths amount of debt, go right ahead. There might not be a job waiting for you.

Since school systems are  being wiped out, here is my take on going to school. If you seriously want to be successful at saving money and learning at the same time, there are other avenues to take. If I had to do it over again, I  probably would  not have gotten two degrees. I would probably just stayed in Japan as an interpretor and amass more money, but I can never say how that would of went because it could have turned sour. I do not know how that might have turned out and I think asking to many "what-ifs" leads to doubt. Do not ask what if  this could've happed or what if that could of happened. It often leads to failure. I do not bother asking what may have happened. I move on and gather skills.

I  know life is rough and there are people out there in the cold with more  jobs, but I know that the majority will have to move on and tough it up. That is why saving  money is so  important. It shelters you in the event "you're no longer needed".

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Salvation At Second Hand Stores

Been pretty busy as of late, but I will be posting a little more once I land a job in Japan. Today I went to Salvation Army to try to find some clothes  for my trip. I suprisingly dropped $100 on clothes, but that was mainly due to the fact I got two pairs of shoes in size 14 and 13E respectively. (Okay my shoe size really is a 13.5, but in America they do not make shoes for the person in the middle.

Aside from my waffle stompers and clip on ties, I needed over coats. I found some really nice over coats for around $7! While not Armani brand, it does convey "interview me"! Also got a haircut again. I would've held off on that, but I needed to have nice hair for Saturday and Sunday. But overall here's my wardorbe for a job interview:

George White Satin Shirt: $12
Dress Pant: $5
Over Coat: $7
Dress Shoes: $22
Zipper Tie: $6
New Belt: $12

Notice that while they are alll new, I will not go broke over having the clothes. One of my wardborbes add up to $64 for formal dress ware. That is actually a bit pricy for me, considering in the past I used to make wardrobes on less than half that budget. I was actually a bit picky due to the conservative nature in which Japanese people dress. The more formal; the better. If I knew some people that were totally going to car pool it down to San Francisco, I would be trying to find ways to save there as well. I thought about taking all the non Salvation Army stuff back, but I decided that would be unethical and I would  be ripping off that store out of their bonus. Yes the Walton family would  not be hurt, however there are people who depend on making those sales like sales floor associates. That wouldn't be right to do so just to get my money back. I would feel better if it was a electronic devise, but that is just me. Well I got an online Skype interview to do so I bid you good night.

What To Do In the Event That None Of the Clothes Will Fit You at the Second Hand Store

Okay, this title probably holds the record for longest titled blog entry ever (well not really). I was in a dilemma with my frugality today. Meaning that...I have a extremly hard time finding clothes that are long enough to fit me. I am  6'5", meaning that I am big in America too. So no matter how I toss the dice, I will always have rolls against me in the size department.

To give an example, my feet are really big. My feet are so big that I can land aircraft carriers on them. I wear a size 14 or 14E/14W depending on the shoe brand. Today, I was shopping at Wal-Mart and I actually came across some non-throwaway shoe brands that actually don't stink (until after a few months wearing them that is). My shirt sizes are an L when it comes to actual fat content, but since I have a lanky frame, I have to go with XL so my shirt doesn't turn into a tube top. It is pretty embarrasing that I  have to wear such odd measurements. I was overweight at one point  in my life, but now I am probably heading towards average. Oddly enough I am able to use a 38" belt all of  the sudden. I could probably try a 36" but I do not want the belt to be too constraining.

In a nutshell, that was the highlight of my day: these weird facts. I am just waiting to be considered an endanger specie, because my measurements are probably not  human. Anyways, I am  getting tired. Those who are interested, drop some  comments, yadayadayada