L Bee and the Moneytree - Positive Self Worth. Positive Net Worth. Positively Fun.
L Bee and the Moneytree

My First Retraction and an Apology

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I’ve never had to do this before, so sorry if this comes out a little uhm….awkward. 

Many of you are aware that I’m a (former) Bluehost customer and a member of their affiliate program. Due to recent events, I feel the need to retract the glowing praise I’ve written about Bluehost and issue this formal apology.

I’ve been a happy Bluehost customer for four years, had no previous complaints of incidents with them, and was so happy with their service I joined their affiliate program at the first of the year. Things were going well and I’ve made decent money recommending their services to my readers and coaching clients. I even mentioned Bluehost as my provider of choice in my Blog Yourself Rich workbook!

About a month ago I started having trouble with my hosting service. My server was down intermittently, my page views and on site time tanked, and many of you wrote and tweeted that you were having a difficult time accessing the blog and the free resources. For someone who earns their living online, this is the worst possible news.

I called and asked what was going on and they said my site kept getting so much traffic I needed my own dedicated server. I upgraded, they took my site down in the middle of the day, and twelve hours later I had my own server and my website was back up and running. Things were running much better until my site went out again two weeks later. Fed up, I decided to quietly move hosting providers. I felt sketchy recommending a product I was no longer using, but if other people were happy I thought maybe there was no harm done.

The tip of the iceberg, however, was when I got a handful of emails from disgruntled readers who used my link to buy hosting from Bluehost and ended up having the same issues.

To those of you who valued my recommendation enough to take it and were disappointed, I’m truly sorry. Reader trust means everything to me and I take my affiliate partnerships very seriously (it’s why I don’t recommend credit cards or products I don’t use!).

Please accept my sincerest apologies and know that I’m no longer with Bluehost and no longer recommending them as of today.

Next Steps

  • For those of you who would still like to get started with your own money making blog (or move your hosting if you are dissatisfied with your current provider), I do recommend Big Scoots or WPEngine. They’re more expensive providers, but I truly believe you get what you pay for. BigScoots saved my butt by migrating my site for me and getting in back online in less than two hours. Highly recommend.
  • For those who would still like a more economical hosting provider, I’ve heard decent things about HostGator, (I use them for my smaller, less trafficked sites) and their prices are comparable to BlueHost. I’ve since updated my tutorial post for getting started with HostGator for those of you who would like to switch.
  • Bluehost is still mentioned in the workbook, but will be edited out when Version 2 gets released in early 2017.
  • If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to use the contact me form or shoot me an email.

Again, I apologize for any inconvenience.

3 Beginner Investment Strategies

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Investing is one of those money topics that is both terrifying and exciting. It can be hard to balance the risk of a lucrative investment and the sensibility to be conservative.

Demystifying investments will help you make the most out of your money. They can be a great way to get started setting money aside for big ticket items such buying a home or retirement, or just to see your money grow over time. But there are still some questions that linger…

How are you supposed to make money if you’re playing it safe?

How do you keep your money in a volatile market?

Here are a few beginner investment strategies that you may find helpful if you want to get started investing.

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5 Free Money Apps that Will Transform Your Finances

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Last month, I had the opportunity to sit on a panel about Women and Money with FemCity here in Atlanta. We talked a lot money hangups, but one woman asked a great question about financial apps she could use to make her life easier.

I rambled off a list of the ones I liked and the ladies furiously started taking notes.

It was then that I realized then that unless you’re a blogger (and your job is writing about finance) or a big money nerd… you probably don’t research these kinds of tools, even though they can definitely make your life (and your money) better.

I’m a little hesitant to jump on the wagon for any new technology. Call it the old lady in me (I still haven’t tried Periscope, even though all the cool bloggers are doing it).

So keep in mind that in order for these apps to be in my rotation, you know they’re good, they’re all FREE, easy-to-use, and most importantly incredibly useful to you in your everyday life.

Here are my five favorite free apps for your finances. Seriously. They rock.

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Get My Home Buying Guide on Amazon!

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Remember when I launched my first full length e-book, The Millennial Homeowner, last month? It was selling in my online store for $19 for both the book and the AWESOME companion workbook.

Well, good news! You can now get the standalone e-book on Amazon.com downloaded directly to your kindle.

Click here to download your copy.

No plans at this time to transfer the workbook to Kindle (it’s not really meant for that kind of thing) but you can still buy a standalone version of my companion workbook in the online store.

Just enter KINDLE at checkout to get the whole shebang for just $9.

…And don’t forget to leave your review!

 

The Four Essential Millennial Money Moves

The 4 Essential Millennial Money Moves

Ever since releasing my book on millennial homeownership, I’ve been thinking a lot about millennial money management. Although things appear to be on the mend (economically) from where they were five short years ago, there’s still been much talk of millennial spending and saving habits.

Even though it’s slightly dated, I was delighted to read this article by The Guardian (thanks to my friend Charles for emailing me the link!) The article highlights a study done by UBS on millennial’s financial habits and outlook. The good news? That with access to technology and information on finance, and after experiencing extreme economic volatility and instability, we as a generation are going to be more financially savvy than our parents.

Possibly even more so than our depression-era grandparents.

And the best part of the study? It proves that millennials are more concerned about their finances than others/non-millennials could even possibly imagine. Which makes LBMT do her happy dance; all my work these last few years is paying off!

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How to Manage Your Personal Finances as a Business Owner

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So you’ve quit your day job and started your own business. First and foremost, congratulations! You’ve done something most people only dream about. Owning a business can be personally and financially fulfilling, but it’s important to keep your personal finances afloat as well. I’ve written about my struggle with this here and here.

Now that I’ve had a bit of experience with managing both personal and business finances, I’ve found that it’s less of a balancing act and more of a system of checks and balances.

There are a few things you can start doing immediately that will help you in the long run. After all you’re hoping that some of that business revenue makes it back to your wallet, right?

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How I made $10,073 in Six Weeks in Summer 2016

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In June, I wrote about how I probably wouldn’t do an income report for July or August because they’re generally the lowest income months of the year. But I was inspired by Paula Pant’s recent real estate income report, where she reported a loss because she wanted to accurately display the ups and downs of being a real estate investor. This is good information for those considering such a path to know and I so admire her honesty. You go Paula girl!

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How to Pay Off Debt from Summer Fun

how to pay off debt from summer.

So here’s what I know:

  1. Summer isn’t officially over until September 21st.
  2. But for the most part…everyone has put their Summer fun on the shelf in lieu of college football, pumpkin spice lattes, and going back to work.

Here’s something else I know:

You may have some debt from your big Summer. Hey, I get it. Besides vacations there are long, beautiful nights drinking rose on a patio, or simply more outdoor activities you wanted to take advantage of while the weather was awesome. This is a judgement free zone –  I’m here to help.

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How to Take a Leap of Faith (and Not Look Back…)

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Have I really not done any personal writing since June? Yeesh.

I gotta tell ya, it feels good to get back to writing again. It feels good to feel like I’m talking to you guys instead of writing about closing costs and ways you might get screwed over during the home buying process. (Again, another shameless plug for my new book.)

I really didn’t expect the absence to go on so long!

So what have I been up to since I took off for the Summer? (If you want visuals and real time info…just look at/keep up with me on Instagram or Snapchat @lbeemoneytree).

Let’s see…..

  • I did two shows. (A production of Anything Goes and a great production of Urinetown) I did them back-to-back. Because I’m crazy.
  • I launched my first full-length e-book.
  • I went to Boston on an amazing press trip for my favorite company, Fidelity.
  • I spoke at several places: a FemCity event here in Atlanta, Phroogal’s Road to Financial Wellness Event, Tuesdays Together.
  • I was named to the Atlanta 30 Under 30 list this year (and got a fancy trophy to boot!) – See my recap of the three aforementioned events in my June Income Report. 
  • Had two great months of “themed” content on the blog: homeownership month and entrepreneurship month
  • ….but most importantly…I moved.

I moved. You guys. I left the house I bought in 2013 that inspired dozens of blog posts, angry columns, one ill-advised DIY blog (remember the Starter Home Diaries, ya’ll?), and the aforementioned e-book. (Okay, last time I mention the e-book, I promise.)

It was a huge, expensive, under-the deadline kind of maneuver. Moving out of that house was a big leap of faith, and that’s what I wanted to talk about with you guys today.  (more…)

How to Start Real Estate Investing

Tips for How to Start Real Estate Investing. Be smart, strategic, slow and steady.

I was 26 when I bought my first house, and people thought I was crazy for doing it, given that it was such an up and coming area.

And maybe they were right. But while my home has been a seemingly endless source of stress and heartache, I still feel like I made a good choice investing in real estate. Here’s how to get started with your first real estate investment and tips to avoid some of the disasters I encountered.

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