I wanted to pass along a few ideas that I have for you to evaluate. Some may feel this is out of their reach, and for some, it might be. The purpose of this is to try and open your eyes to some things you can do to hustle. Many of you don’t like to hustle. I do.
So for those of you who think big, freshen up your coffee and dig in.
- Dividend investing with stocks. Right now, I’m in a high risk/high return play which can either be extremely favorable come Monday or be a disaster. I am heavily in on Washington Prime Group (WPG) at the moment and they have been in discussions to deal with potential bankruptcy or re-structuring of debt. No one knows how this is going to turn out, but the stock hit like $1.69 a little while back and I alerted my former IRS agent friend to take a look. He was BIG into this last summer. At this price, it was too much for him not to make a move, and he got a substantial position. I did a check on the balance sheet and saw they had over $500m in equity and 24m shares – rough ballpark number looked like if someone bought the company and sold off for spare parts, that they have a company worth $22 per share, and it was selling for $1.69. OK – so I got in on a ton of options, and then sold 1/4th of them for a 4x and got a free ride on almost all of my current options. I own shares outright and if things go south, I have a 50% downside risk. The good news is that the company has positive cash flows and with the world re-opening, is primed for massive income coming in. It seems they are trying to restructure debt and may avoid bankruptcy – but no one knows. The thing is with this REIT was that I had heard from a buddy (do your own due diligence) that this paid out $2.25 per QUARTER dividend – or $9 a year. He also said they had to pay out 95% of profits to investors with dividends. My former IRS buddy looked at this and feels this is a $90 stock. It’s now trading for $5 and I last saw 31% short interest. If there is good news on Monday, a short squeeze could take this to $15 in short time – and within a year or two this could be back to a $50-$100 stock paying out $5-$10 per year, per share, dividend. My dollar cost average for all shares/options when all is said and done will be about $2.75 per share. I can get my investment capital back in a year once dividends are re-instituted, then I’m looking at many years of dividends. OR – this stock could collapse. I make mention of this because there are opportunities out there yet, albeit some are risky – to find strong dividend stocks. This could collapse, but I just don’t see how with $500m equity and positive cash flows since malls started to re-open. Idea is to find stocks that pay a healthy dividend so every quarter you get a nice check. REITS can be nice for this. This one could be a dumpster fire or a home run, depending on how Monday turns out. We shall see. Edit – looks like they got bad news and this will be a bloodbath for most today. I’m in a great position with low buy in with options so not really too worried for me, but anyone late to the game might be hurting today.
- Trading. I’m not a “day trader”, but I did educate myself on some trading ideas that I do once in awhile to get some extra income. Maybe $1000-$2000 per month on one or two trades. I’d caution you to learn a lot about this first, but this is a nice side gig you can do using your brain for a few hours that might pay a lot more than delivering pizza 20 hours a week.
- Buying land and subdividing/farming. One idea I have is to buy a large plot of land somewhere within 100 miles of me, then go through a process of subdividing over years. In the below example, I could buy this with 10% down (15k) and carry a $500 per month mortgage payment for 1-2 years while I subdivide. No idea of costs of this, but you might need surveyors, engineers, and work extensively with local government on doing this. So this is 63 acres – perhaps I divide this in to 10 x 6 acre plots. I keep one or 2 plots for myself, then sell the rest in chunks. Overall idea is to perhaps get 1-2 lots for free, pocket some cash to pay for years of taxes, and you can pass this down, use it for storage, camp there, or perhaps bug out there. One idea I’d have is to put tons of raspberries and blackberries on the property. I used to harvest a lot of these as a kid on my property and get massive buckets. Having acres of this could be interesting to even freeze a lot of this or sell at a local farmers market. Raspberries get some good return and you can get a ton of these. For free. I mentioned farming in this because you can design your property to have a lot of berries/plants so you could go there and get food for free. Or, if you have to “bug out”, you have years of raspberries and blackberries there all over the place.
- Renting out. This can be a pain in the ass, but I own 3 units right now, in two properties. One is two separate dwellings. I lived in one for 7 years and instead of selling, I moved out and rented it out. I have a property manager that takes care of all collection of rent, repairs, etc. Point is, you can buy a “starter home” and down the road, rather than selling, rent it.
- Refinancing debt. I took 25% off of my mortgage payment by refinancing the house I live in. With how cheap money is today, it’s a super low mortgage. This freed up more money. I even refinanced one of the properties I rent to do cash out refi to do major repairs – same mortgage payments, but I just got 30k out to upgrade it for the next 20-30 years for free.
- Buying used cars. I know this might not be a sexy pick, but I just took my 2017 highlander hybrid and traded it in for a 2018 Ram 1500. Because used cars are fetching a premium now, I found out I could get $10,800 over my car. I bought new in 2017 due to my 90 minute commute. Over the last year, I was paying stupid sick high car payments for a car that barely left my driveway. I WANTED to buy a 2007 pick up truck, but I felt with my eventual commute coming more frequently, a 15 year old truck may not be very reliable. If I had no commute ever again or something 10-20 mins away, I’d always be buying used.
- Learning a skill to DIY – I have been learning to fix up my basement myself, with drywall, drop ceilings, painting, flooring, mud, etc. With a pick up truck, if things went south quickly, I feel I could work with my hands if need be. This is saving a ton of money going it alone. I’m calling this passive income because these are expenses you avoid. In essence, extra income.
- RV? I am sick to my stomach with costs for hotel rooms on the east cost for vacations. I want to go to beaches with the wife and kids and I’m seeing $300-$400 per night. You are looking at $3000 for a week minimum for food, hotel, etc. This is just one vacation. I have in-laws on Long Island, NY, and staying there with a growing family is harder and harder. I would LOVE to take multiple vacations a year, trips up there, and 3 day vacations in the region. I’d like to take my dog. With an RV, you could be looking at a used one for $20k-$25k, and these can get financed over 10 years. Point is, for perhaps $200 a MONTH (or $2400 a year for 10 years), you could get a LOT of use out of this. How much does it cost for a family of 4 to fly to Disneyworld, stay at the resort, do the parks, and food for a week? You are looking at $15k. For one damn trip. I refuse on principle. With a truck now, I can potentially haul a camper around. Additionally, if shit goes REALLY bad in my area, I can flee with an RV and setup shop anywhere in the country, immediately.
- Ownership of SOMETHING. For me, I’m heavily in on Kinesis Monetary System now. My HOPE is that over the next 5-10 years, precious metals using a crypto front end token get a lot of traction. Having ownership in this company (by means of KVT) can get you potentially lucrative passive income. Some of these models are showing a KVT that costs $1200 – $1400 now could potentially generate $4,000-$16,000 per year in income. Or, it can go to zero. So for a small fraction of my portfolio, I’m betting that 3-5 years down the road, this thing can be giving me 10x yearly returns. If you are interested, please use my referral link here to sign up. I do get referral points when you spend and do things through Kinesis, so you can get others involved if YOU think gold and silver could be used as money again. With doing nothing. The payments for this are in gold. So I own a bunch of these, then just let them collect grams of gold monthly passively. Maybe you feel ownership in a stock is worth it? Maybe ownership in a pizza place?
- Studying/reading – how do you get paid for this? If you are able to get more skills, education, and certification, you become more useful to others. You have a greater utility. This can help you in many ways down the road increase your income potential. Working hard is obvious, but if all you are doing is putting in 60 hours a week into your CURRENT job, you aren’t putting in the time needed for your FUTURE job. Instead of working 60 hours a week, put in 40 a week and go back to school to learn a hot field. Nursing? Biofuel? Geology? Oil engineering? Chemistry? YOU are the limiter of YOUR income.
- Real estate investment. I wanted to send a shout out in this to my childhood friend April Crossly at Lazy Girl REI, as she works with investors for passive income with real estate. She also has a YouTube channel here with 16,000 subscribers that gives you TONS of information to get started. Prices are going through the roof right now, but this is on the backs of people not paying rents or mortgages for a year. I feel that over the next year, there may be a LOT of opportunity to buy commercial properties, apartment complexes, and even single family homes through mass amounts of evictions and mortgage defaults. Note – what she did early on was a TON of hard work, but her and her husband are now traveling the country in an RV and doing deals remotely while maintaining properties remotely in Pennsylvania. While you may not get a 10x in 3 months like bitcoin, you can consider these types of things as passive income. I am sharing this pic from them to show you what their office looks like on a daily basis. Hate your 9-5? Consider making your own path.
- Stop buying stupid shit. I’m sorry to break it to you, but people in my country have lost their damn minds. There are soooooo many things people buy out of obligation to maintain status quo, that everyone has lost their ways. I have one grandmother left who is 94 and lived through the great depression. At 9, she lost her mother and her and her siblings were “farmed out” to families to do work while getting a roof over their head. My great grandfather at the time was a coal miner and took work on the new roads project, and had to disburse his children. There were no programs then. This is the type of shit that everyone lost perspective on from the Great Depression. To this day, my grandmother re-uses aluminum foil and wrapping paper. I grew up with BOTH of my grandfathers (both WW2 vets) having massive gardens, canning, going to a farmer for food, and doing food swaps within the family. These people grew up in an era with nothing and EVERY purchase was meaningful. They’d get used cars once every 10 years or so. Do their own repair work. If you just STOPPED buying stupid shit, you could save a LOT of money.
- STOP EATING OUT. I used to eat out many times a week or get delivery. This racks up your food budget. COVID put the nail in the coffin for this for me, but I had already been low carb/keto and been making my own food for 3 years. I PREFER my own food now, as I know what’s in it. IF you eat out, make it a special occasion and do it right. Don’t waste money standing in line for Outback to get processed like cattle in and out, eating the lowest quality food they can serve you in the most economic fashion possible.
- STOP SMOKING AND DRINKING. This probably saved me $1000 a month from when I stopped this stuff.
- PAY OFF DEBT. Instead of taking that goddamn cruise on a credit card, buy a tent, go camping for $10 a night at a campground. Have an adventure of hiking, kayaking, fishing, roasting marshmallows, making campfire food – rather than living it up. LIFE EXPERIENCES are the best, not what you see on a damn post card in some third world country. If you can sacrifice a little for 2-3 years to pay off debt, you can live the rest of your life free of it.
- Taking up additional work – due to my writing, I was gifted a KVT from citizens for sound money and have been able to buy others at a discount. With my video work I’m doing, I got some referrals on my Kinesis money and will get referral yields of their activities forever. In college, I delivered pizza as a second job to working at the college as my primary. People can work a few hours a week delivering food now, easily.
- Sell shit! So you have a lot of stuff in storage. Get rid of things that you don’t need. “Stuff” can perhaps get you a few hundred or thousand bucks to pay off some debt.
- Downsize! I didn’t need the stupid Comcast cable package I had. I went with Amazon FireStick and now have a la carte services. I have all of the things I used to have. Can I afford a 6,000 square foot home? Yeah. That might surprise you based on my writing here. But I find it not pragmatic to do so. I don’t NEED that space. I have a 5BR home as it is. Years ago, I had a 5 BR house where I rented the top 3 out to tenants. My mortgage was $1300 and they were paying $500-$600 rent. When I bought this house, I always had in the back of my mind that things could get very bad and relatives/friends may have to move in someday, so I have 2 guest bedrooms. While these people may come on hard times and lose a home, they can contribute to your mortgage while they get back on their feet. So while you can, on paper, GET a LOT of house, it may not make a ton of sense to do so.
- Things to do cheap. Go on WALKS. Use parks. Buy a bike. I cannot tell you how many “life experiences” I have been offered over the last 20 years that involved hundreds or thousands of dollars to see a sporting event, concert, or show in person. To ME, I don’t dig any of this. A good off broadway show, perhaps. There’s TONS of things you can do for a LOT less money. LOT less. Hiking at local parks – free. Get some good hiking boots. Buy a nice bike and you can literally ride it for hundreds of hours. Get good walking or running shoes and run around your development. Invite friends over and cook some hamburgers up on the grill for cheap rather than spending $300 out for a dinner. Do a picnic in a park. Learn to play an instrument (I did some side hustles with my trumpet years ago in shows and churches).
- Eat healthy. I made mention of this numerous times, but passive income is also avoiding medical expenses. How many people do you know with diabetes that could have avoided it by eating low carb? Find me a type 2 diabetic on the planet that lived their life low carb. They don’t exist. Eating higher levels of carbs eventually leads your body to putting on weight and getting diabetes. For many people, you can avoid costs by eating healthy. For me (it may be different for you), this is eating a lot of lower carb veggies, some lower carb fruits, grass fed beef, organic chicken (when possible), drinking tons of water, and avoiding as many carbs as possible. You can literally go the rest of your life without eating a single carb. Remember that when you are eating a plate of pasta for dinner 3 times a week like I used to.
- Learn to fish/hunt. I grew up fishing a lot, so I feel confident that you could air drop me in on any area of the globe with fishing equipment and I can catch a fish. I now have hunting equipment in case I need to hunt deer or game, but I have never done so. Working on it. I took archery in college and can wield a bow and arrow if need be. Imagine a day in 5-10 years from now where food scarcity is a thing? You could hunt deer and get it processed and have months of food. You could catch your own fish in the local stream/river/lake/ocean for food. Great sources of protein!
- Bonus pick – surround yourself with motivated people that always seem to do well. My former IRS agent buddy turned me on to WPG a year ago and I had been watching it. It might go in the gutter, but there’s also a potential 10-20x in this stock over the next few years. April and her husband Justin went out of their way to help me out with my one rental on rehab – getting me some estimates and hooking me up with a project manager they have used which has made my life incredibly easier and I can’t thank them enough. I had a trainer years ago and we always talked about health. My buddy and I talk about investments a lot. Another buddy and I discuss guns and shooting, and I will look for ways of hunting. A LOT in my circle are low carb. I have entrepreneurs in my life. I have very successful people around me. I once heard something – “you will be in 5 years who you surround yourself with today”. To me, this is the epitome of how you get more ahead – learn tips/tricks/secrets from your friends.
Only doing ONE of the above can help you out, but if you look over this list, there’s a LOT you can do. Some of this involves investment capital – yes – but if you are smoking today, you are spending $400 a month in smokes. I used to smoke. Quit today and there’s $400 per month to invest. You go out twice a week drinking with your friends to meet women? There’s $200-$500 per month you now saved. Don’t do it. Stop buying stupid shit, especially on credit card, and there’s perhaps $200 a month I just saved you. Go on walks instead of spend $600 to go to a football game. Drink tons of water. My guess is IF you look REALLY hard, I think a lot of you could completely change the way you look at things.
You have to understand that your income potential, and your life, is determined by you. If you feel this stuff is too hard, that’s how your life will go. If you want to change badly enough, you will take a goddamn hard edit of your life and make changes. Pick and choose some items above to look at.