Couch Potato Cash

Here are my multiple income streams. This is my philosophy of diversification. Not bet the farm on one profession for the rest of your life!

I've ordered them from highest paying to lowest paying.

  1. Own stocks which pay large dividends. Dividend payouts vary month to month, but are rarely under $200/month. Ticker symbols SFL, SMHD, and YYY.
  2. Selling calls and puts. This income also varies month to month, but rarely below $70/month. Currently selling covered calls on GROW, NIB, and SILJ.
  3. Swagbucks  Search the Internet. Get the daily code.  Move on to the passive playlist videos.   $12/month Amazon Gift Card or $25/2 months PayPal.
  4. App Trailers Use this smartphone app to do the daily free scratch off.  Also run the videos at the top (5 points but they run w/o user intervention).  $5/month PayPal.
  5.  STEEMIT (A social media platform that pays for up-voting other posts or authoring your own). Convert to bitcoin, then cash-out to USD.
  6. QMEE  Paid to search for products using Google, Yahoo, Amazon, and eBay. Get the browser plug-in. Fast payouts. No minimum for cash-out.   $2.00/month PayPal.

 


The Best Sharing Economy Ideas

I like to make money on things I already do or already posses.

Being a glorified taxi driver (Lyft or Uber) doesn't do much for me!

 Why not just rent your bike, surfboard, or skis

Put up a tent in your backyard and rent it (great for cities that have lots of big events/concerts in the summer)

Folks always need tools, why not share them

And your car sits in the garage/driveway for at least 14 hours, rent it. RelayRides or Getaround


Get Cold Hard Cash and Help Your Fellow Man

  • Check out The Hair Trader if you are interested in selling your hair.
  • U can earn up to up to $135/month donating plasma. To find a blood bank near you to sell plasma, go here or here
  •  Call your local fertility clinic to inquire about selling eggs or sperm.

Alternatives to Trumpcare and Obamacare

Get insurance out of health care altogether, except for catastrophic, unanticipated injuries. After all, insurance is about managing risk. You wouldn’t have your car insurance pay for routine oil changes, or your homeowners insurance pay for a new coat of exterior paint on your house. The very idea is absurd from an economics perspective, cost-prohibitive, and goes against the very definition and purpose of insurance. Having one’s insurance pay for a routine tooth cleaning or simple physical checkup makes no more sense than having insurance pay for a new tires or a home termite inspection.

General Insurance Coverage:
Join a health care sharing ministry. These are voluntary, charitable membership organizations that agree to share medical bills among the membership. Samaritan Ministries, Christian Healthcare Ministries, and Christian Care Ministry. They operate entirely outside of Obamacare’s regulations, and typically offer benefits for about half the cost of similar health insurance. Members are also exempt from having to pay the tax for being uninsured.

Critical Illness Coverage:
Acts like an insurance policy if you have kidney failure, heart attack, stroke, etc. I'd get the highest benefit amount possible.http://www.ehealthinsurance.com/critical-illness-insurance

Accident Coverage:
You should max out your medical and uninsured/under-insured driver coverage amounts
under your auto insurance policy, which can pay medical bills if you are hurt in a car accident.

Concierge Medicine
Contact local doctors and see if they offer services for a monthly fee. In my area, $60 gets 24/7 access.


Governing Downside Economic Risk

A governor, or speed limiter, is a device used to measure and regulate the speed of a machine, such as an engine. I have taken that concept and applied it to finance. You put in place a governor that limits the speed at which you could potentially lose money.

Here is how I apply it:

  • I do not buy disposable products. Why throw money in the garbage?
  • I place stop loss orders for every stock/ETF I own at 4.5% below its cost basis. My upside is not capped but my downside is.
  • I use alternative income streams rather than bet everything on a single business venture.

A great way to get free products

Readers may want to check their local thrift stores. Near my town, a thrift store called Caring and Sharing offers volunteers $4 of store credit for each hour volunteered. You can accumulate hours to save up for the item you want.

The work entails placing donated items on shelves and putting a price sticker on them.

Looks like we will be getting a free crock pot!


9 Ways To Make Extra Money

  1. Cut grass.
  2. Hold a yard/garage sale. Nothing to sell? Use police/government auctions for merchandise to re-sell.
  3. Shovel snow.
  4. Baby sit http://www.sitters.com
  5. House sit http://www.housecarers.com
  6. Dog walk http://www.findadogwalker.com
  7. Become a school crossing guard or recces monitor.
  8. Beg. John Stossel went undercover & made $93 in one day. Or try it online @ http://www.cyberbeg.com
  9. Generate referral income. My cable company and my discount broker pay me to bring in new customers

FREE FRUIT

Run by so-called urban foragers, FallingFruit.org has an interactive map that shows where you can harvest your own fruit -- as well as herbs, nuts and vegetables -- from trees and plants that grow mostly on public lands. You can sort by location or fruit type. Then you can drill down to individual locations to see what type of fruit grows there, when it’s in season, and whether it’s on public or private land. You also can see reviews by other foragers and a street view image courtesy of Google.


Make Money Performing Human Intelligence Tasks

Work when it's convenient for you by signing up MTURK.COM. The website, run by Amazon.com, pays a few cents to a few dollars for small tasks that fulfill a larger job.

My strategy on Mechanical Turk is to perform the tasks that take the shortest time to complete - like a quick survey, or rating a video. I have already received $1.67 from filling in bonus surveys sent to me via email!


Automatic Investment Management – AIM

AIM is an investment method devised by the late Robert Lichello. This method is a proven way to take advantage of the inevitable market swings to enable us to ‘Buy Low / Sell High’.

Groundrules of how the AIM Strategy works:

  1. When starting with a lump sum, only invest 50% from the start.  If establishing a monthly investment plan, also split this allocation to 50% invested (after all, there’s a 50/50 chance the market will go up OR down tomorrow!)
  2. Utilize a cash account to maintain your investment reserves / gains, awaiting further investment (starting with the second 50% of your lump sum, and then including the proceeds from sales as well as 50% of any subsequent monthly investment.)
  3. Be prepared to sell a portion of the gains you have realized and deposit them into your cash account, per the AIM algorithm.
  4. Be prepared to buy some back with your reserved cash account when the stock declines.
  5. Set a routine period of time in which to analyze the markets direction, and take action.
  6. The algorithm is relatively simple.  It involves several key points:
    1. Portfolio Control:  Running total of your stock purchases (total initial purchase plus 1/2 of follow on purchases; however it is never deducted from in a sale) in order to keep a basis of where the portfolio should ‘aim’ to be.  This is the ‘governor’ of the system – it drives the initial assessments about buy and sell decisions. 
    2. Buy/Sell Advice:  Based upon the current Stock Amount (currently owned shares times current price) compared to the Portfolio Control figure.  When the Portfolio Control amount is larger than your current Stock Value, you will look to buying (the Market is down.)  When your current Stock Value is higher than your Portfolio Control, you will look to selling (the Market is up.)
    3. SAFE (Stock Adjustment Factor Equalizer):  10% of the Stock Amount – After you do the analysis in [b] above, you compare the results to your SAFE amount – you only pull the trigger on a sale or purchase for the amount of Buy/Sell Advice less SAFE; this controls you from selling or buying too prematurely.

TIP ME and I will email you the spreadsheet and a help file!


60+ Frugal Tips

  • Don't use the canned air method to clean keyboards - it's expensive. Plug in your hairdryer and blast away.
  • Candles last longer if you freeze them prior to burning.
  • Got an itchy mosquito bite, try rubbing soap on it.
  • Use scotch tape to pull out a splinter.
  • Wrap celery in aluminum foil then refrigerate. It will last for weeks.
  • Cut you S.O.S. pads in half – no more rusty, smelly pads.
  • To get a little more life out of worn out soles, try filling in the cracks and holes with hot glue.
  • Covering a pot with a lid reduces cooking time and energy use. For extra energy savings, be sure to match the pot size to the burner size.
  • If you’re shopping for appliances, check with the salesperson to see if there are any back room bargains. Sometimes a stove has a slight dent or a washing machine is scratched.
  • Use GoDaddy to register a domain name (web site).
  • Buy a battery tester and test “dead” batteries before tossing – lots of times its just one “dead” battery causing the trouble.
  • When your printer says your ink is low, pull out your cartridge and shake it to get another few days out of it.
  • White vinegar is a great cleaner.
  • Drying your disposable razors (blades) extends their life – just use a towel.
  • Why keep a porch light on for hours when you can buy a battery powered push light  and use rechargeable batteries?
  • Use a Faraday flashlight. The ones you shake to light up.
  • Increasing the deductibles on auto and home insurance can save hundreds of dollars on premiums.
  • Buy prescription eyeglasses at zennioptical.
  • To make your own miniature greenhouse, take an old egg carton; fill the individual sections with soil and seeds. Cover the top with a piece of plastic wrap. Before you know it, you will have the makings of a beautiful garden.
  • Wad up some tinfoil and use it in your dryer instead of chemical coated sheets to get rid of static cling.
  • "Feeder goldfish" cost less than 10 cents. Their food is around a $1 and lasts many months. One can use any type of glass bowl or antique canning jar to keep them in.
  • Use honey for lip balm before you go to bed.
  • Bring your own water bottle everywhere. Refill the water bottle at water fountains.
  • Camping Cooler - buy bottled water and freeze enough to fill your cooler. You won’t have to buy ice until four or five days into the event (when everyone else is making almost daily ice runs).
  • Take produce into your office and have a "Take Some and Leave a Quarter" cup next to them. Use proceeds to buy plants for next year.
  • If the A/C goes out in your car, try the $20 can of recharge from an auto parts.
  • Clean your windshield wipers with vinegar to extend the life of them.
  • Always stop at a local pawnshop when considering a new tool purchase, bicycles, vacuum cleaners, etc.
  • Slip those plastic grocery bags over your shoes when entering your garden, tie at the ankle. Keeps shoes nice and clean.
  • Bigger isn’t always better, buy only what you need if it is a perishable product.
  • Don’t bring the children shopping. You will accomplish the task quicker; you’ll avoid spending extra on stuff “seen on TV”.
  • Shop secondhand stores for toys.
  • Some fifteen states offer tax-free days or tax-free weekends, with most coming in August. That’s an automatic savings of at least five percent in most cases, so plan accordingly.
  • Consolidate your student loan.
  • Don’t use another bank’s ATM.
  • Kick the (fill in the blank) habit. If you stop using alcohol, tobacco, and junk food, you’ll save thousands your lifetime and probably live longer and healthier!
  • For cash gifts, consider a payment plan like 10 checks for $10 with each dated a different month.
  • Ask you dentist, doctor, and hair stylist for their old magazines – read recipes, cut out coupons – then recycle them.
  • Buy used eyeglass frames at thrift shops and then have new lenses made for you prescription.
  • Have your kids make a homemade kite.
  • Use local police auctions to get bikes, jewelry, cars, etc.
  • For urban dwellers taking public transportation, ask your employer for a transit check, a subsidy employers get for alleviating gridlock.
  • Use Styrofoam peanuts to re-fill a beanbag chair.
  • Place wanted signs (instead of for sale signs) on bulletin boards for furniture, cars, and other big ticket items.
  • Turn empty matchbooks into a portable sewing kit.
  • Your bed mattress will last longer if you “spin in the spring, flip in the fall”.
  • Bread tabs can be used to mark electrical cords at the outlet/power strip.
  • Remove shelves from a dead refrigerator and mount shelves in the garage/basement.
  • Use a wine cork to replace missing pot handles – attach with a screw.
  • A broccoli style rubber band makes a great jar opener.
  • Bubble wrap is great cushioning for people who must stand while on the job
  • Use garlic powder to keep the varmints out, It’s a wonderful natural plant protector.
  • Ask elderly relatives and neighbors who are unable to drive if they need a lift to the supermarket – they’ll offer to pay for your gas.
  • Check rent – to – own stores for cosmetically damaged or otherwise non rent-able items.
  • Call area attractions and ask if they have any “free to the public” events scheduled or regular “free admittance” times.
  • If you re a senior citizen, always ask about senior discount everywhere you travel, shop, eat, or lodge!
  • Check with local high schools that have shop classes. Often they sell wood scraps left over from student projects.
  • Inquire with dry cleaners about left items for sale.
  • Use mesh bags (the kind turkeys/onions/potatoes are packed in) as scouring pads.
  • To get something out of a heat register or under the fridge, add an empty paper towel roll to your vacuum. It can be bent or flattened to get in narrow openings.
  • Cut old bread bags in half and use the bottom half as sandwich bags.
  • Old hangers make good pegboard hooks.
  • If an envelope is over one ounce but under 2, you don’t need 2 first class stamps, have it weighed for exact postage.
  • Your dog will love “dead tennis balls” left at public tennis courts.
  • Serrated edges from aluminum foil boxes (or a wax paper boxes) can be made into picture frame hangers.
  • Save you old pickle jars and the liquid inside. Slice up cucumbers and re-pack. In four days – pickles!
  • Put a teaspoon or two of baking soda into the shoes before you wear them. Great odor eliminator
  • Use 100% cornstarch instead of Baby Powder

Easy Estate Planning

The need for a will is becoming less and less. And going thru the probate process may become a thing of the past. Here is what you need to check on:

Brokerage Account:  Transfer on Death (TOD)
A way of designating beneficiaries to receive your assets at the time of your death without having to go through probate. This designation also allows you to specify the percentage of assets each person or entity (your "TOD beneficiary") will receive. Your assets will then be automatically transferred to the designated beneficiaries upon your death.

Bank Account: Payable on Death (POD)
An arrangement between a bank or credit union and a client that designates beneficiaries to receive all the client's assets. The immediate transfer of assets is triggered by the death of the client.

Real Estate: Transfer on Death Deed
When the homeowner dies, title to the real estate passes to the beneficiary or beneficiaries, named in the Transfer-on-Death Deed, similar to how title passes in a Joint Tenancy Deed. This Deed avoids Capital Gains Taxes to be paid by the Beneficiaries at time of sale. Not all states allow them.
If you want to pass property to family members, look into a Quitclaim deed


5 Ways To Reuse Your Old Shower Curtain

  1. Drop cloth for painting
  2. Tarp to cover firewood pile
  3. Protect your car's interior or trunk from bags of compost, top soil, muddy boots, etc.
  4. Family size poncho at an outdoor event
  5. Mini-greenhouse or cold frame for the garden. Build a frame with plastic pipe or scrap wood, and drape the curtain over it. Use stakes to secure it to the ground.

 


Space: The Frugal Frontier

  • Think vertical – just keep a step stool handy
  • Hang stuff – use pegboard or hammer nails between floor joists (in the basement) and hand stuff that has a handle/hole
  • Think square – square containers can be stacked and don’t waste volume like circular containers do
  • Be creative – use the space under a couch, under a bed, or under the stairs for your non-perishables – use a storage trunk as a coffee table
  • Keep track to avoid duplication through labels, writing on boxes, and arranging items logically
  • Buy foldable furniture like futons, card tables, folding chairs
  • I have found that I double my freezer space simply by taking the frozen contents out of the boxes that they are purchased in
  • When saving things for future use, save only the small, useful parts like screws, nuts, bolts, springs, and washers
  • Buy things that have multiple uses – a bike can be both transportation and exercise
  • Clean house every spring and have a yard sale – if something doesn’t sell, call the Salvation Army

The Tyranny of the Tax Man

In 1913, the entire federal tax law, plus explanations and other related material, fit into a single 400-page volume. Today, they total 40,500 pages in 22 volumes. And the list below shows you all the taxes that have been added. Yet the government is broke??????

  1. Accounts Receivable Tax
  2. Building Permit Tax
  3. CDL License Tax
  4. Cigarette Tax
  5. Dog License Tax
  6. Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
  7. Fishing License Tax
  8. Food License Tax
  9. Fuel Permit Tax
  10. Gasoline Tax
  11. Hunting License Tax
  12. Inheritance Tax
  13. Interest Expense Inventory tax
  14. IRS Interest Charges IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
  15. Liquor Tax
  16. Luxury Taxes
  17. Marriage License Tax
  18. Medicare Tax
  19. Property Tax
  20. Real Estate Tax
  21. Social Security Tax
  22. Road Usage taxes
  23. Sales Tax
  24. Recreational Vehicle Tax
  25. School Tax
  26. State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
  27. Telephone Taxes such as federal excise, universal service fee tax, federal, state and local surcharge taxes
  28. Utility Taxes
  29. Vehicle License Registration Tax
  30. Vehicle Sales Tax
  31. Watercraft Registration Tax
  32. Well Permit Tax
  33. Workers Compensation Tax

 


Pay Out Social Security Contributions Then Shut Down the Program

SsOf course you can't do that because that would save the government literally trillions of dollars!

Take me as an example. I have paid in $69,058 as of 1/1/2011. Assume I could request a check for that amount right now and not collect Social Security at retirement.

If I live to 75 (male life expectancy from wiki) and retire at 62. I would receive $828 every month for 156 months from Social Security. That is $129,168.

The government saves $60,110.

Over the next 20 years, 74 million boomers will retire. If my situation is "typical" the government could save $4.45 trillion!


The Frigging Fracking Fallacy

I'm not a geologist, but from the alternative articles I've read, natural gas will explode sometime between now and 2022.

The play for me is $BOIL and I'm boxing in the current price by selling out of the money calls and selling out of the money puts.

Skip to 37:30 for natural gas analysis.

 


Halving To Save Money

Often we use too much of some cleanser - thinking that's how much we need. Examples include dish soap, shampoo, shaving cream (you get the picture).

Try using half as much, if that works, try halving it again. Ultimately you'll find just the right amount to do the job but not be wasteful!