Friday, June 23, 2017

Income/Expenses: May2017

I love the balancing act this picture to the left portrays. Take a second to study the picture. I love it. And I especially love it in months like the May that we just had.

The picture speaks of recurring expenses attempting to achieve perfect balance with recurring income.  A beautiful harmony.  

Now oftentimes in our family, however, this balancing act seems more akin to a galactic battle, in which unseen forces struggle all month long hoping to achieve total household dominance! Does anyone else feel like expenses are rarely 'recurring' and usually come out of NOWHERE sometimes??

General Thoughts on this Month: Our 'unexpected' expenses approached galactic proportions this month...to the tune of over $1,400.  How often do both of our vehicles need new brakes and rotors...at the same time!  Thankfully, our 'income' side (the good side of the force, I'll call it) fought back hard as well, and we were able to still manage a positive savings rate (see my all-time Savings Rate page here).

Anyway, listed below is a detailed display of all income and expenses specifically for the month of May 2017.  Every penny in and out, recorded!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Passive Income Report: May 2017

It is time again for my Monthly Progress Review, and I almost missed it! My family and I (my mom, brother, sister, and my wife....without the kids!) were on an Alaskan cruise for the last week or so.  I highly recommend one if you ever have the opportunity! What a blast.

In each progress review I will list a summary of all dividends I received, the rental income I received, and any purchases I made from that particular month.

This monthly report covers May 2017.  


I hope you enjoy these posts and that we can learn how to grow our passive income streams and build real long-term wealth together! 

General Thoughts on This Month: May was a relatively quiet month for passive income and, again, I hardly have anything to say but that I am thankful for what we received and that some income is always better than no income! Just sticking to the process with months like these.

Anyway, Read More to see how I thankfully still earned $417 this month in passive income...

Saturday, June 3, 2017

My 4th Rental Property Is Under Contract!

Hello all!

I'm sorry it has been awhile since I've last written.  Things have been extremely busy, but I am very happy to report that despite my 'projected plans' for investments, etc., a unique opportunity came my way and I now am under contract on another investment property! This property puts my total real estate investments now at 4 single family homes!

This was quite the blessing and (completely out of the blue, to be honest). I think there are a few famous sayings that really apply to what happened with this situation: first, opportunity favors the boldsecond, help others get what they want, and you'll get what you want;and third, you really can buy properties with no money down (albeit, this was a unique opportunity).  You'll see more how these apply in the rest of the post below.  They came to mind very quickly as I was reflecting on this experience.

Nonetheless, I'm excited about this investment deal, and I'd love to share the details with you now:

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Income/Expenses: April 2017

Sorry this post is a little late.  It's been a little crazy lately with my Graduation from Duke. 

So I'll get right to it:

General Thoughts on this Month: Overall this month had a lot of larger expenses, making it very hard to achieve a high savings rate. I've said it before and I will say it again, it doesn't really matter how much money you make if you're spending it all! 

The road to wealth is in consistently having a large difference between what you earn and what you spend.  The 'extra' that you have at the end of each month, wisely invested, is what makes you wealthy.  See my Must Read Books and read The Richest Man In Babylon, where this point is really hit home.

Additionally, I've updated my all-time Savings Rate page here.

Without further adieu, listed below is a detailed display of all income and expenses specifically for the month of April 2017.  Every penny in and out, recorded!

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Passive Income Report: April 2017

It is time again for my Monthly Progress Review, the fourth of the year, and what a boring one it was.

In each progress review I will list a summary of all dividends I received, the rental income I received, and any purchases I made from that particular month.

This monthly report covers April 2017.  


I hope you enjoy these posts and that we can learn how to grow our passive income streams and build real long-term wealth together! 



General Thoughts on This Month: April was very slow for passive income. I hardly have anything to say but that I am thankful for the little we received and that some income is always better than no income!  This month was also the first month since PassiveIncomeDude was launched last July where my rental properties had negative cash flow.  Thankfully I received an escrow refund, otherwise this could have been a pretty low month (less than $50, which is why I said my comment above).

Anyway, Read More to see how I thankfully still earned $655 this month in passive income...

Monday, April 24, 2017

Our 3rd Rental Property Has A Tenant!

For those of you who have followed this blog over this past year, you'll know that my wife and I are moving again this summer, and as a result, our North Carolina property is quickly going to turn not into our home anymore, but into our 3rd rental property.

Well, I am happy to report that we just had a very nice couple sign a two year lease, at our asking price, with them moving in only 5 days after we move out! What an absolute blessing!

I've written about this before, but I was as concerned that this property would not be able to get our asking rental price, and I was also concerned that it would sit vacant for awhile.  With a very large mortgage, even one month of vacancy can seriously hurt your cash flow. And when you have several other properties, multiple vacancies for multiple months can put you in hot water in a hurry! I've said it before, but just because you've got a good investment doesn't mean that you can survive the short term liquidity problems. This very thing happens to many businesses and forces them into bankruptcy!  And so to have a tenant locked in now, at our asking price, for not one but TWO years, with only 5 total days of vacancy at the start, is about as good as I could have hoped.

As such, I wanted to provide a few of the financial details behind this investment, now that things are going from "projected numbers," to actual numbers starting on 01 June.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Income/Expenses: March 2017

Happy Easter! He is risen!

One of my favorite posts of the month! It's very personal and helps keep me extremely accountable!

I think it takes a little bit of guts to share your income and expenses openly with the world. But that said, I think there is value for both of us in reading this post. I will do a similar post every month.

General Thoughts on this Month: Overall a pretty standard month for our family. Unfortunately I fell short of my Savings Goal this month, but part of the reason for that was due to some flight expenses for my wife and I that I've spread across two months, and also because of lower than usual 'job' income.  

I have money being automatically deducted from my paycheck in order to pay back my TSP loan (another one of my goals, goal #10), and so once that debt has been repaid it should be easier to hit my monthly savings target.  That said, I've updated my all-time Savings Rate page here.

Listed below is a detailed display of all income and expenses specifically for the month of March 2017.  Every penny in and out, recorded!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Passive Income Report: March 2017

It is time again for my Monthly Progress Review, the third of the year, and what a great one it was.  

In each progress review I will list a summary of all dividends I received, the rental income I received, and any purchases I made from that particular month.

This monthly report covers March 2017.  


I hope you enjoy these posts and that we can learn how to grow our passive income streams and build real long-term wealth together! 



General Thoughts on This Month: March was awesome for passive income, as it usually is since it falls on the 3,6,9,12 months, which offer my largest payouts of the year.  The better news is that even despite having some real estate maintenance costs, I was able to achieve a growth rate of 13.2%.  

Awesome. BUT one thing we have to remember about growth rates is that they do not take into account magnitude. They only focus on 'relative' gains instead of 'absolute' gains. Do not miss this point! Growth rates do not take into account magnitude.  I'll clarify this with a quick made-up example: If last year your passive income was $100 and this year it is $200, your growth was 100%! Incredible.  But we need to remember the absolute gain was $100. Whereas if last year your passive income was $1,000 and this year now it is $1,200, your growth was only 20%.  What happened!? Did you have a rough year? Did you stop investing? NO.  Your absolute gain was in fact double what it was from the first example but your growth rate ended up being much smaller. This is a simple example that we often forget when we only obsess about year-over-year growth.  It is much easier to grow a small pie than a large pie.  Even expert economists forget this fact!

Anyway, I'm happy with how this month turned out.  Read More to see how I earned $960 this month in passive income...

Friday, March 10, 2017

Income/Expenses: February 2017

One of my favorite posts of the month! It's very personal and helps keep me extremely accountable!

I think it takes a little bit of guts to share your income and expenses openly with the world. But that said, I think there is value for both of us in reading this post. I will do a similar post every month.

General Thoughts on this Month: This month we received a very large tax return, which greatly helped our income (side note - I deducted $1.9k from the return displayed here because it was directly applied to some debt repayment).  So thankfully our income was this month was high. Otherwise it was a pretty standard month. The tax return helped our savings rate be slightly over 30%. I've updated my all-time Savings Rate page here.

All of that said, listed below is a detailed display of all income and expenses for the month of February 2017.  

Monday, March 6, 2017

Passive Income Report: February 2017 (TERRIBLE!)

It is time again for my Monthly Progress Review, the second of the year, and what a terrible one it was.  

In each progress review I will list a summary of all dividends I received, the rental income I received, and any purchases I made from that particular month.

This monthly report covers February 2017.  

I hope you enjoy these posts and that we can learn how to grow our passive income streams and build real long-term wealth together! 

The worst part of this month for me is that I have to report -70.6% YoY growth. What a disaster.  

Part of the cause of this terrible YoY growth (or more appropriately I should say, decline) was portfolio based - transitioning one of my major holdings, MMP at 7% of my total portfolio, down to about 2%, and hence I received a much smaller dividend from this holding.  

I transferred these funds from MMP into the Vanguard REIT Index fund (VGSLX), which is a new holding for me that I am excited about, see my updated portfolio here, but I mention it now only to say that it will help my March passive income report's numbers, but that it made February's very small.  The other factor was that HCP, which usually also pays out in February, decided to payout in March this year as well.  Add to that some real estate expenses and you get negative 70% "growth".  But hey, sometimes months like this happen I guess. Ideally March will be much larger. Still, I hate reporting declines of any kind.  

For some good news I was able to make a bunch of purchases this month, which I will detail below, and is really the only silver lining for me during another very low income, expense-filled February 2017.

Read More to see how I earned my lowest total ever since PID was launched, $179 this month in passive income...

Friday, February 17, 2017

A 'Real' Example of Real Estate Leverage

I haven't written much lately; partly because life is busy, partly because I am still somewhat doing a 'side gig' and pursuing other interests, partly because the "payoff" from a PassiveIncomeDude article is very low currently, and partly just because I haven't had much to say.  I am drastically paying down debt and contributing regularly to ROTH IRA investing, which has resulted in nothing 'exciting' going on with my investments, in terms of buying stocks, buying properties, or selling etc.

That said, I am currently in the process of marketing my North Carolina Property (here) for rent this summer, and I witnessed a great example of leverage recently that I thought would be useful to share.

As some of you may know, I am a HUGE fan of leverage, especially and specifically real estate leverage, where your leverage is backed by a 'real' asset (the lumber, steel, concrete, glass, petroleum products, brick, etc) that all go into making a house AND it is an asset that you actually control.  This is in direct and stark contrast to "stock market leverage," where you only have very, very minuscule and indirect control of whatever the company's market valuation happened to be  on the day you decided to buy.  Huge differences there worth a re-read.

All of that said, I have written about leverage (here) before on PassiveIncomeDude, where I used the example of my Colorado Property to show how I achieved a 100% return in just one year.  It is an extremely powerful example of leverage that I think is worth the few minutes of reading.

Now back to my current example from the previous owner of my North Carolina property:

Monday, February 6, 2017

Income/Expenses: January 2017

One of my favorite posts of the month! It's very personal and helps keep me extremely accountable!

I think it takes a little bit of guts to share your income and expenses openly with the world. But that said, I think there is value for both of us in reading this post. I will do a similar post every month.

General Thoughts on this Month: This was a rougher month with expenses, which I don't fully understand to be honest, but it CLEARLY hurt our savings percentage.  I think a lot of our costs were "leftovers" from the holidays, but we are definitely attempting to tighten up a few things in February. We'll need to if I want to achieve even just one of my Passive Income Goals for 2017.

All of that said, the first month of the year is behind us and listed below is a detailed display of all income and expenses for the month of January 2017.  

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Passive Income Report: January 2017

It is time again for my Monthly Progress Review, the first of the year.  Crazy to think that we are already 1 month into 2017.

In each progress review I will list a summary of all dividends I received, the rental income I received, and any purchases I made from that particular month.

This monthly report covers January 2017.  

I hope you enjoy these posts and that we can learn how to grow our passive income streams and build real long-term wealth together! 

The most exciting part of this month for me is that I FINALLY GET TO REPORT YoY growth. Passive Income Dude is less than a year old, but I started tracking my income in January of 2016, so I now can finally report my year-over-year growth each month, which I am very excited about.

Read More to see how I earned $377 this month in passive income and would have achieved a 39.5% YoY growth rate if it weren't for.....

Friday, January 13, 2017

2016 Review: Rental Property #2 (Colorado)

This is my second property review for 2016. In this post I would like to follow a similar method to what I did with my Missouri Property: a thorough, yet to the point, review of my Colorado property's rental performance in 2016.

I'll try to review the property's cash flow, mortgage paydown, capital appreciation, general thoughts/advice I have, and anything else pertinent to the property.

I hope this post is helpful for those looking to get into real estate as an investment, and I imagine it will be helpful for me as well.  Without further adieu, here is what happened with my Colorado rental property this past year:




Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Income/Expenses: December 2016

One of my favorite posts of the month! It's very personal and helps keep me extremely accountable!

I think it takes a little bit of guts to share your income and expenses openly with the world. But that said, I think there is value for both of us in reading this post. I will do a similar post every month.

General Thoughts on this Month: This was a great month for income, thanks to a record in Passive Income, in which all dividends were reinvested, which really makes everything else look good as well (savings rate, % of expenses covered by passive income, etc).  In reality, it was pretty normal month if dividends are removed.  

As usual in December, it was pretty expensive due to the Holidays, but that happens every year and we are ok with it actually.  In fact, if you remove housing, rental property mortgage costs, and gifts/donations, our total expenses actually came in under $2,000 this month.  But when you add back in those three categories, expenses balloon to over $7,000!

All of that said, listed below is a detailed display of all income and expenses for the month of December 2016.  

Saturday, January 7, 2017

2016 Review: Rental Property #1 (Missouri)

In this post I would like to do a thorough, yet to the point, review of my Missouri Rental Property's performance in 2016.

I'll try to review the property's cash flow, mortgage paydown, capital appreciation, general thoughts/advice I have, and anything else pertinent to the property.

I hope this post is helpful for those looking to get into real estate as an investment, and I imagine it will be helpful for me as well.  Without further adieu, here is what happened with my Missouri rental property this past year:






Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Goals for 2017: Bigger, Better, Bolder!

In this post I will highlight my financial goals for 2017.  I italicize 'financial' intentionally, as I want to emphasize that the following list of goals are only related to my finances...hence my financial goals.  It'd be a sad life if these were my ONLY goals for 2017! :)

That said, I think it is important to have goals (as many of us bloggers do!) for all areas of our lives, and I talk a little bit more about the importance of goals on my Passive Income Goals page.  At that page you can also find my 2016 goal, as well as some of my future projected goals (2018, 2019, 2026....next two years and when I turn 40.)

My goals post is actually one of my favorite posts of the entire year, believe it or not.  There is something very refreshing about having a new 'start' and diligently laying out your plan for what success looks like. In the end, that's what goal setting is all about isn't it? Defining what success looks like in a particular area of your life.  Your goals are the specifics, the high-view plan, of what success looks like.

One thing I personally like to do with my goals is prioritize them, by number.  So if there is only one goal I can accomplish, it should be the one at the top of the list, and then the #2, and so on. This indicates specifically where I should focus MOST, and what I want to achieve the MOST (to consider it a 'success', etc).

Finally, you'll note that the subtitle of my blog now says I am 31 years old. Another year down, another year older!  We only have one life to live so let's make it the best. Without further adieu, here are my financial goals for 2017. Some of them are pretty bold: