Invest for Retirement with Robinhood

May 20th, 2019  |  Published in Investing  |  Comments Off on Invest for Retirement with Robinhood

A great way to invest for retirement is to use the Robinhood brokerage app. The app allows you to buy and sell stocks, ETFS, and options from your phone. Although Robinhood does not offer an IRA, they are a great place to invest some of your after-tax funds as they do not charge any commissions.

When you sign up for a free brokerage account with Robinhood through my referral link they will give us both a free share of stock. The stock you receive is chosen at random and will be worth between $2.50 and $200. When I signed up the stock I received was worth about $2.93. The value of the stock you receive will most likely be worth about $2.50, but some people get lucky and get a more valuable stock. According to Robinhood you have a 1 in 250 chance to get a share of Apple, Facebook, or Berkshire Hathaway. That isn’t bad odds for something that will only cost you a few minutes of your time.

Robinhood is an app that allows you to make commission free stock, option, and ETF trades from your phone. They also have a desktop site you can use if you don’t want to use your phone. I was skeptical about buying stocks from my phone, but now that I have been using the app for a while I prefer using my phone and rarely use the desktop site. I like being able to just open the app on my phone and see how my portfolio is doing. Although that does lead to me checking my portfolio way more often than I should.

Of course, if you find the Robinhood brokerage account useful signing up for the free stock is an even better deal. When I signed up, I did it only for the free stock and didn’t have any plans to buy stocks through Robinhood. After selling my free stock and cashing out, I left my account dormant for about a year. Then I decided to take a flyer on the parent company of MoviePass (HMNY) and see if they could recover. That didn’t work out to well. I ended up selling the stock for pennies. I only invested $10 so it wasn’t too big of a loss.Since that purchase I have been buying stocks on a pretty regular basis. My focus is on dividend growth stocks. I’m not sure what return I’ve made on my stocks. They have done pretty well although probably not quite as well as the market overall since it has mostly been a bull market since I’ve started investing in dividend stocks. I’m not too concerned whether my stocks trail the total market a little since this is a small part of my total portfolio. The bulk of my retirement accounts are invested in index funds. I think of investing in these dividend stocks as a profitable hobby that leads to me saving more money than I would otherwise. It allows me to have a little bit of the thrill of gambling but with the odds in my favor.

If you would like to sign up for Robinhood please use my referral link and we will both get a free stock.

How You Can Start Saving and Retire Years Before You Planned

September 5th, 2018  |  Published in Guest Post  |  Comments Off on How You Can Start Saving and Retire Years Before You Planned

The goal of millions of people is to be able to retire comfortably without having to worry about money ever again. This is going to take dedication as poor financial management can lead a person to delay their retirement for decades or permanently. A majority of us do not want to work until we cannot anymore as we would like to enjoy our retirement. A proactive approach about saving as well as earning can allow a person to retire years before they had planned to. The following are tips to help save money to help retire years ahead of schedule.

Invest In Energy Efficient Renovations

Certain renovations are going to end up paying for themselves in savings then saving you money month after month. A great example is that of energy efficient windows which can make a large difference on the electric bill for those living in extremely warm or cold climates.  Check out a review site to learn more about replacement windows. The savings on the electric bill will help cover the cost for the renovation then the savings end up going directly into your account. A new air conditioning can also be a huge difference maker if you have an older AC unit that could be wasting electric daily.

Find Some Extra Weekly Income

The world of freelancing has erupted with technology becoming so prevalent around the world. Those people who have skills in web design or are proficient writers have a great opportunity to earn supplemental income consistently. This does not require a person to go outside of their own home and many freelancers work in places they enjoy being like a restaurant on the beach or anywhere comfortable that also has Wi-Fi. Even personal assistants can stay at home as long as they schedule meetings, relay messages, and handle email communication efficiently.

Write Out A Realistic Budget

Writing out a realistic budget can help save money and it also allows a person to see where they are spending their money. Certain things like the mortgage or insurance are fixed costs so your expendable income will be targeted when trying to save money. You might even find out that you are paying for a subscription a certain channel, website, or service that you haven’t used for years. Follow a budget and set a certain goal of how much you want to save monthly. Find out more about budgeting at TheMoneyAlert.com as well as information on other finance related topics.

Downsize To A Home You Need

People nearing retirement that have had their children grow up and move out should think about downsizing their home. It might not be necessary to have a large home when family only comes to visit on the holidays. You will save yearly on property taxes as well as utilities as larger homes are more expensive to keep running. Do not downsize your home until the housing market in your area is healthy as this can help put thousands of dollars extra into your retirement account.

As you can see it just takes a proactive approach to saving for retirement to succeed. Set a retirement date goal and see if you can start knocking months off of the goal to retire early!

Common Health Problems for the Elderly

August 11th, 2018  |  Published in Guest Post  |  Comments Off on Common Health Problems for the Elderly

Common Health Problems for the Elderly

 

As you’re planning for your retirement by figuring out your financial situation and exploring your options for life insurance in San Antonio, it’s also a great idea to familiarize yourself with some of the health complications you can expect in your golden years. Knowing what those health conditions are allows you to take steps to prevent and lessen them, which benefits you physically as well as financially.

 

Arthritis

 

While arthritis should come as no surprise when talking about the elderly, it deserves a spot on the list nonetheless. Eating fish rich in omega-3 fatty acids, keeping your weight under tight control, exercising and taking steps to protect your joints are all effective ways to prevent arthritis. Additionally, you’ll want to keep up with regular doctor check-ups so you can get an early warning about your chances of developing arthritis in the future.

 

Heart Disease

 

Heart disease is a chronic condition that has lead to a number of deaths of elderly individuals. High cholesterol and high blood pressure are two common factors that increase a person’s risk of not only contracting heart disease but of having a stroke. Getting sufficient exercise, eating healthy and getting sufficient rest are all ideal ways to kick heart disease to the wayside.

 

Alzheimer’s Disease

 

Another condition that goes hand in hand with aging, Alzheimer’s disease is one that not only causes cognitive impairment but can lead to death as well. While the exact cause of Alzheimer’s has yet to be pinned down, there are steps you can take to avoid it. For instance, getting a good night’s’ rest and engaging in sufficient exercise could help. In regards to foods that can help keep your mind healthy, Harvard Medical School recommends eating whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes and fish.

 

One thing to point out with Alzheimer’s disease when it comes to elderly individuals is that memory slips in the senior community are common and aren’t always cause for panic. Even middle-aged people forget where they put their keys, it doesn’t mean they have Alzheimer’s. It’s when you have difficulty carrying out your daily routine because you’re unable to think as clearly as you used to that you should visit your doctor.

 

Diabetes

 

While diabetes is another condition that can easily be diagnosed by a doctor, you can also find out your overall risk of diabetes. Like many of the other health conditions on this list, there are things you can do to see to it that you never have diabetes. Again, exercise goes a long way in treating and preventing health conditions throughout your life, and it’s essential that you take steps to remain physically active as you age. You should also be sure you get plenty of fiber in your diet to help you feel full and boost your blood sugar control. Additionally, whole grains like those found in bread, pasta and cereal can also keep you from becoming diabetic.

 

Depression

 

While depression is more of a mental health problem than a physical health problem, it’s a mental health issue that can definitely impact a person’s physical health by crippling the immune system. Besides being more socially active, additional ways of treating and possibly preventing depression include engaging in mindful meditation, taking care of your physical health, sleeping and eating well and engaging in activities that make you happy. Because stress can also lead to depression, it’s good to know your triggers for stress so you can take action on handling your bothersome situation before things set in.

 

While there’s a lot that needs to be done as you prepare for retirement, all your hard work is sure to pay off. Be sure to keep these common health concerns in mind to get the most out of your retirement.

 

When Can I Retire? When Should I Retire?

April 20th, 2018  |  Published in Guest Post  |  Comments Off on When Can I Retire? When Should I Retire?

While most of us would dearly love to retire as soon as possible – tomorrow if we could – the reality of life is such that a lot of factors conspire to push the magical date of retirement further and further away.

A common irony exists however, that as we do get closer to our retirement, we start to get more and more apprehensive about taking that step. And this is only natural, since it is one of the biggest steps in life we take, and feelings of uncertainty can easily take over.

But the good news is, there are ways to plan and things to look out for that can help determine the best time to retire.

Transition to Retirement

Retirement need not be an abrupt stop on one day. Increasingly people are easing back first, working part time for some months or even years before retiring fully.

Some countries even have a formal pension system that allows for transitioning to retirement. For example the Australian system pays a part pension to people over 60 working part time, see the explanation by Industry Super.

Retirement Readiness

Finally, it’s important to feel that it’s the right time to retire. Leaving stable employment can affect a lot more than simply your income. So much of our social and community life is influenced by our workplace. Will this be affected when you no longer spend time at work? Make sure your prepared for this.

Of course, then there’s all the extra time you’ll have. Most of us look forward to the prospect of having the time to spend doing what we want, but without the structure of the daily schedule we’ve become used to, it can feel a bit disorienting – especially if your position or role plays an important part in your life and status in the community.

So before you retire, make sure you have access to support systems, activities and groups to keep you occupied and happy.

After all, this should be the time of your life, so planning when and how to retire should fill you with excitement, not trepidation.

Investors Leverage Securities Tied to Free Software

October 29th, 2016  |  Published in Guest Post  |  Comments Off on Investors Leverage Securities Tied to Free Software

Investors and brokers have long argued back and forth about whether or not software developed around an open-source model will ever turn a profit. Plenty of vendors have lost a significant amount of money by giving away their products for nothing, and these companies ultimately dragged some unfortunate portfolios down with them. The market is changing, however, and several top vendors are again leveraging their experience in free software to reap large profits. Some analysts are now advocating adding these companies to a healthy portfolio in the interest of diversification.

Canonical Attracts International Funds

Mark Shuttleworth isn’t a figure many investors have heard of, but those who are putting together technology investment funds are taking a close look at him. Canonical is a private British computer software company. Shuttleworth, a South African investor, has put his entire weight behind the company. It’s positioned to become one of the largest open-source model vendors in the world. While Canonical technically loses money, that’s at least in part because Shuttleworth continues to invest most of the profits back into the firm.

The company is currently privately held, but they’re exploring revenue streams that aren’t traditional for most software vendors. Shuttleworth applied for trademarks that would allow the company to sell shirts and hats featuring their company’s logo. Few software firms have that kind of faith in their product’s brand image. These alternative revenue streams are drawing interest from investors who want to add Canonical’s securities to their technology-based mutual funds once the company goes public.

Putting on a Red Hat

Red Hat is one of the biggest technology stocks to watch today. It’s become famous for being a rare example of a security traded on the New York Stock Exchange that saw it’s target price appreciate from literally nothing to a hefty sum. The company provides software solutions in several industry segments that analysts previously thought were worthless. They distribute open-source software solutions based solely on crowdsourced operating system technology. Red Hat once shared their name with what was then the most popular free operating system.

Today they market Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), which provides industrial and commercial users with all of the support they would expect from Microsoft or Apple. RHEL proved to be extremely competitive in the marketplace, and it continues to steal customers away from Windows and OS X. Individual consumers have flocked to Fedora, which is Red Hat’s distribution for personal desktops and laptops. The company provides training and consulting services for people using either distribution, which gives them a strong second stream of revenue. It’s no wonder that investors are extremely bullish when it comes to this particular stock.

Can Free Software Make Investors Money?

Investors are quickly asking if the open-source model can ever turn a profit. The answer is yes according to Vista Equity Partners founder Brian Sheth. Vista Equity recently acquired a majority stake in Granicus, which is a software vendor that specializes in solutions marketed toward government agencies. Sheth has faith in the company’s mixture of free and commercial software solutions. Leaders of major equity funds don’t usually put their backing behind projects that they have little faith in. The fact that there’s so much support seems to indicate that free software will indeed make money for those willing to invest in it.

Get Paid to Buy Bluehost Web Hosting via Swagbucks

September 26th, 2016  |  Published in General  |  Comments Off on Get Paid to Buy Bluehost Web Hosting via Swagbucks



If you’re reading this after 9/27/16 then the limited time offer is over and you can sign up for Bluehost through this referral link. You won’t make money for buying the hosting, but you will get a good deal on web hosting.

You can make up to $44 buying Bluehost web hosting with a special limited time Swagbucks offer. Follow the steps as listed and you should receive 8,000 SB which are good for over $80 in Amazon gift cards of $80 through PayPal.

1. Log in to your Swagbucks account. If you haven’t yet signed up for Swagbucks please sign up through my referral link. It will make me a few extra SB and won’t cost you anything.

2. Once you’re logged in look for the Bluehost offer on the Swagbucks home page. If you don’t see it you can go straight to the Swagbucks Bluehost offer page and you should get the deal.

3. Sign up for the $2.95 basic plan for one year. There are additional options you can choose if you want. Doing so will reduce the amount of money you make from this offer.

4. If you chose the $2.95 basic plan for one year and declined the additional options your total should be $35.40.

5. Your Swagbucks account will be credited with 8,000 SB within 32 days.

That is all you have to do to make $44. It might be possible to make a little more money by canceling the hosting after 30 days. I’m not going to try that myself.

Here is the small print from the Swagbucks offer.

Offer valid 09/26/16 12:00am MST through 09/27/16 11:59pm MST . Please allow 32 days for SB to credit. Cancellations prior to 30 days will not earn SB. This offer may only be redeemed (1) one time per user. This offer is presented to you by Swagbucks on behalf of a third-party merchant or sponsor (“Merchant”). Swagbucks does not endorse (and therefore is not responsible to you for) the Merchant’s views, policies, products or services. Have questions? Please contact the Swagbucks Help Center.

How to Get a Personal Loan When You Have Bad Credit

August 6th, 2016  |  Published in Guest Post  |  Comments Off on How to Get a Personal Loan When You Have Bad Credit

Debtholders with a below average credit score are often afraid that they will be unable to obtain a personal loan. Raising your credit score in order to meet the standard lending rate is not the only way to receive one. If you have bad credit and wish to get around high-interest rates, here are some tips to consider.

Recognize the Numbers

In order to set a goal for yourself, you first need to know where your credit score falls. A credit score is a number assigned to an account that indicates the lender’s capacity to repay a loan. The credit scores vary depending on the company, but FICO with a range from 300-850 is the most widely used model. A low credit score based on the FICO model is considered anywhere from 300 – 559, a below average score is 560 – 659, and an average score is 660 – 724. Key factors that often affect your credit score involve making heavy use of your available revolving credit, and how much credit history that your account has.

Consider Using a Cosigner

A Cosigner or Co-signer when considering a personal loan, is a person who signs an official document along with the lender. Having a cosigner with a reputable credit score will allow the company to trust that debt will be paid back through either the lender or the cosigner if the lender fails to pay. Missing a payment on the loan will also affect your cosigner’s credit score, so make sure to discuss with them if you feel unable to make a payment. If you cannot find a cosigner you may want to look into a personal loans with no credit checks.

Apply to a Credit Union

A credit union is a nonprofit cooperative whose supporters can borrow from a mutual sum of credit at a low interest. Credit union membership is different from a bank and is operated entirely by its members. It’s common for lenders to seek out a community that allows them to have a similar link, such as working in the same industry or geographical area. Many credit unions will offer the same services as a bank such as checking accounts, savings accounts, credit cards, mortgages, CDs, auto loans, and personal loans.

Tap into Your Home Equity

Your home equity is a line of credit that uses your residence as collateral. If you’re a qualified homeowner with available equity, you can tap into this line of credit. Since your line of credit is based on your home equity, it normally results in lower interest rates than other forms of unsecured credit. You can spend and pay back the funds as long as you’d like during your draw period, the first 10 years of the loan or set of time depending on who you take the loan from.

Taking Back Control

Trying to build up credit when you have none can be discouraging to see your scores so low. Taking out a personal loan with a bad credit score should be part of a solution to your debt problems, and not a way to delay the unavoidable measure of paying your debt back.

This content was provided by a friend of the blog. It’s rare that we have the opportunity to share something so awesome which helps cover the cost of running the blog!

Social Security Made Simple – Free 11/30 and 12/1

November 30th, 2015  |  Published in Social Security  |  Comments Off on Social Security Made Simple – Free 11/30 and 12/1

The book “Social Security Made Simple: Social Security Retirement Benefits and Related Planning Topics Explained in 100 Pages or Less” is available free on Amazon for two days.  This book has been updated as of November 2015 to reflect the changes made to Social Security by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015.  According to the book description this book explains the following topics.

  • How your Social Security retirement benefits, spousal benefits, and widow/widower benefits are calculated,
  • How your benefits are affected if you have a government pension or if you continue working while claiming Social Security,
  • How to decide when is the best age for you (and your spouse, if you’re married) to claim Social Security in order to get the most out of your benefits,
  • Whether or not it makes sense to take Social Security early in order to invest the money,
  • How to check your earnings record on the Social Security Administration’s website to make sure you’re getting the full benefit you deserve, and
  • How Social Security benefits are taxed and how this affects retirement tax planning

Social Security can be complicated and most of us will be collecting it someday so it makes sense to read a book such as this to ensure we get the most possible. If you have been thinking about researching Social Security options getting this book for free would be a good start.

Dating After 60

January 27th, 2015  |  Published in General  |  1 Comment

Are you among the majority of singles over 60 who feel you can not fit in today’s dating scene? Been so long since you meet someone on a romantic level that you think maybe you do not know how to prepare and what to expect. It is not easy to be out of the game of seduction, especially when you feel you slouch when you see those sweet couple cuddling while watching a romantic movie in the park, or happily taking a walk while holding hands. But did you know that these days more and more mature people these days are joining dating sites online?  There are special dating sites that are just for dating for people over 60 who are hoping that they will get to know that special someone.

So now you’ve met a potential date, but the question is whether the decision to make the occasion a night (or day) to remember? Starting something new can be a bit challenging, especially when you’re one over 60 who wants to get back into the dating world. Like any other kind of dating, you need to think of an activity that will make the experience more memorable. This is why a lot of people over 60 years of age often meet in groups, where people share a bit of fun, fellowship, and common interests with participants gather. Think social activities like joining book clubs, play duplicate bridge or the ever popular bingo: hobbies will make your day a little more exciting and you will also be able to socialize and make friends with new people too.

As people age, their life circumstances change and often find themselves alone, while those around them family and friends are busy with their daily lives. They are living in difficult times, so you have to find company for meeting new people around. Many singles over 60 years  find company group events, where they are able to meet new people, enjoy amazing conversations with new friends and share some fun. At these meetings, people are in a good mood, and others are often there to meet other people too. Note that even though you are in your sixties, there is still plenty of fun to be had connecting with others, and you are never too old to make new friends.