The Sexy New Online Income Report – $7,400 in April 2016

earned money blogging

ICYMI: Last week, I posted a very intimate, emotional piece about how I’ve struggled with focus since April of last year. And I got a lot of amazing, wonderfully kind and encouraging comments from folks.

…And more than a handful of emails about the graphic I posted on how I managed to increase my income just from blogging in such a short amount of time.

You guys gave me a lot of great ideas for posts, and I plan on covering more about affiliates and releasing digital products in the near future, but for the sake of transparency I wanted to delve into greater detail and do my first “real” income report.

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How to Start Tracking Your Net Worth

Tracking Your Net Worth

If you’re like most people, you’ve probably put a lot of thought into how much you’re worth as a person: your values, your confidence level, and what your own personality is like.

If you’ve landed on this site, chances are you’re also thinking a bit about your own finances: your debts, what you can do better, and how to budget and save money.

…..But do you know your total net worth? It’s the most important financial number of all – even more important than your monthly salary, how much you owe, and how much house you can afford.

Why? because it combines all of the above, and it’s also the only way to tell if you’re actually going in the right direction with your finances.

Even if you think the number might be disappointing or scary, it’s important to know your net worth number. For those who have never attempted it before, below is a tutorial on how to calculate it.

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4 Steps to Pay Down Debt and Prepare for Home Ownership

steps to pay down debt

It’s May! Yay!

Okay, enough with the rhyming- I apologize – I’ve been giddy lately.

But It’s also homeownership month on the site, which means all of the posts for the next few weeks will have a slight home ownership tone to them. I became a home owner 3 years ago and despite all of the home renovation drama, it’s been on the best financial decisions I’ve ever made (which I’ll share the details on in a post in just a few weeks!)

But before we can even begin shopping for a home and going over the ins and outs of the home buying process, we need to talk about what it takes to financially prepare for home ownership. With student loans and stagnant wages for millennials, it’s no longer realistic to say you need to be debt free in order to buy a home, but if you have a lot of it, paying down debt is an important thing to attempt before you buy a home.

Paying down debt has big home buying benefits: it raises your credit score, and frees up money in the budget for a mortgage payment and upkeep. Breathing room is always a good thing.

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The Amazing Power of Doing Just One Thing

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Featured image credit: Shelby Rae Photography.

Are you familiar with the show Parks and Recreation? (If not, have you been living under a rock?!)  Besides being one of the best television shows of all time, it’s also where I heard one of my favorite quotes.

In Season 4, Leslie is trying to work her day job while running an active campaign for city counsel. Spoiler alert: she’s dropping the ball on everything and creating a lot of chaos, which is why her boss and mentor Ron Swanson, tells her.

“Never half ass two things, whole ass one thing.”

The following personal essay is the story of how I decided to whole ass one thing in each aspect of my life that was failing.  (more…)

The Value of Having Reliable Vendors as a Solopreneur

Photo Courtesy of Stacey Bode Photography

The following post is another in the series of sponsored posts I’m doing with Comcast Small Business. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog!

On April 10th, I hit one year of solopreneurship. I made it! And honestly sometimes, I can’t believe it. I’ve already got a 3,000+ word post in the works for all the things I learned over the last year (similar to this post I wrote at the six month mark), but one of the most important things I learned is how crucial it is to have processes, tools, and service providers you can actually count on when running your own business.  (more…)

Why You Need an Emergency Fund First

Why You Need an Emergency Fund First

Given that it’s financial literacy month, now is as good a time as ever to talk about the steps you can implement to make big changes in your own finances.

Don’t fight me on this—the #1 thing you need (which is also the easiest to start!) is an emergency fund — or a little cash blanket to wrap around you in times of trouble.

First, let’s start off with the definition of what an emergency fund actually is.

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Fresh Ways to Save Money On Just About Anything

fresh ways to save money

With April being Financial Literacy Month (SURPRISE) all of the posts for this month are going to cover allllllllll the financial “gimmes.” Think of it as personal finance 101. Veterans may enjoy reviewing the lessons and beginners can indulge in a month that’s all about them. Yay!

As a personal finance blogger, I’m constantly being asked what my favorite ways to save money are. It’s one of the best parts about my job. I love helping my readers (yes, you!) find a new way to look at your finances or make the most of your money.

….But sometimes it’s hard to find fresh, new ideas. That’s the thing about personal finance – it doesn’t change that often. The basics are still (basically- ha ha!) the basics. A lot of the same tips our parents and our parents-parents used are still relevant today.

But when it comes to new ways to save, sometimes you’ve got to get a bit creative, but boy, does it pay off.

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Borrowing Money from the “Bank of Mom and Dad”

how to borrow money from mom and dad

With April being Financial Literacy Month (SURPRISE) the posts for this month are going to cover allllllllll the financial “gimmes.” Because I got so behind, this post was originally supposed to be in “Debt repayment” month but I instead published this piece on the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. Whether you believe in borrowing money from family, we can all benefit from learning how to gracefully ask for the things we want. Enjoy!

 

Whether you think it’s acceptable or not, 60% of Millennials accept financial help from their parents. And these aren’t college age kids, the metrics used in the report referenced above are from a survey of post-college twenty-somethings. 

Blame it on the recession, failure to launch, yada yada yada. I’m not here to debate the finer economic points of adult children accepting money from parents. Primarily because as a chronicler of awkward money conversations, it’s my job to comment on etiquette and not circumstances.

I’m also not going to weigh in on if I think it’s appropriate or not, because I’m an adult child who has accepted financial help from her parents.  (more…)

The Peaks and Valleys of Entrepreneurship (About L.Bee)

 

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Cute photo right? It sums up how I’ve been feeling lately.

If I’m being really honest, the only reason I’m throwing this up today is because I’ve received two-too-many angryish emails about the uptick in sponsored/affiliate content on the blog of late and I knew I was long overdue on a check-in.

I try to maintain a 2:1 balance here between sponsored and not (we love our sponsors!) But I know that lately this hasn’t been the case and I’m sorry if you’ve felt some authenticity has disappeared.  (more…)

The Power of WiFi as a Solopreneur

Xfinitypost

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Comcast Small Business, but all opinions are my own. Please see below for additional disclosure. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog.

Remember back in the day when you couldn’t use your phone and the internet at the same time? When you had a legit computer room in your house and you had to fight your brother for time on AIM? Maybe I’m showing my age a bit, but that stuff so would not fly in 2016.

I mean I get angry when my internet goes out for 10 minutes these days. The most beautiful part of our Internet culture is the mobility – and that is what makes WiFi so important for businesses. (more…)

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