House Hacking: Lets You Get Your Housing For Free

This Hack lets you get your housing for free by having someone else pay for it, house hacking. investment, property, rental, rent, life, hacks, invest, fixer, upper, income, property http://jessicacoaches.com/2017/05/house-hacking/ ‎
This Hack lets you get your housing for free by having someone else pay for it, house hacking. investment, property, rental, rent, life, hacks, invest, fixer, upper, income, property http://jessicacoaches.com/2017/05/house-hacking/ ‎
This Hack lets you get your housing for free by having someone else pay for it, house hacking. investment, property, rental, rent, life, hacks, invest, fixer, upper, income, property http://jessicacoaches.com/2017/05/house-hacking/ ‎

No, this is not about marrying rich! This is a real solution to make living expenses more manageable, or even make money. And while this is not about getting a sweet sugar mama or daddy to pay your rent, it is having someone else pay for it.

Your renter.

What I’m talking about is commonly referred to as House Hacking. House hacking is when you buy a property with the intention of renting out units or rooms to people to pay for the property. The HGTV show Income Property often makes a reference to this when people are making a rental unit in their basements and such.

 

If you are in need of more immediate housing solutions, I would like to point you to https://portal.hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/topics/rental_assistance

 

I have been house hacking for the last six years. What we do is purchase a home, we have a family, so we aim for multi-unit homes. We keep the property prices low as we don’t have a huge income and have lots of skills by buying fixer uppers, usually living in the unit we are fixing up. Right now we are living in a duplex, in the larger of the two units: a three bedroom two bathroom. The other unit is a two bedroom 1.5 which is completely separate is paying the entire mortgage. Pretty sweet right?

Related: How I never have to pay another penny for my retirement at age 34 on a 30,000 per year salary!

It gets better, once everything is fixed up we find a new property and do it all again, renting out the other property fully.

Examples of house Hacking situations:

–  Buy a 3 unit property, live in 1 and rent the other two out.
–  Get a large single family home with four bedrooms, you live in one bedroom and rent the others out.
–  Purchase a house with a guest house or basement that will function as a rental to help cut costs on your large residence.

Pros:

 

House Hacking allows for low-income investors to squeak into the investment property world. This is because the rental property will qualify for owner occupied loans with down payments of 3.5%-5% as long as it is four units or under.

Related: How to Buy a Property With No or Low Money Down!

It can lower your expenses, allowing you to save more money to invest in yourself. I do love it when other people pay my mortgage!

You are close to your tenants, so they tend to behave better, it is also convenient being your property manager allowing for more profits.

If you buy a fixer, you can live in a unit that needs to be fixed up and slowly do the renovations. No driving to the site. No lapse in rent during a renovation. Improve slowly, or by the room, as you have the money to do it, the only one who has to suffer a construction zone is you.

house hacking construction zone

Cons:

You will be living next to your tenants. For some, this can be awkward.

You may be giving up the privacy that having a whole lot between you and your adjoining neighbor provides.

Have you ever lived in a construction zone? While amazingly rewarding, there is nothing like building something to make you feel accomplished. It is stressful. There is always something to do.  In fact, that half done project might be right in front of you while you are trying to get some relaxation in. It also always tends to take longer than you expect!

 

Advice for first-time house hackers:

If you are going to get a fixer upper, and do the work yourself, try not to be too ambitious, stick to surface problems and properties that do not need to be gutted.

Get rid of your mortgage insurance by forcing appreciation with improvements. You can do this once you feel you have 20% equity. You can either refinance or try to get a reevaluation from your current lender, and they will likely want an appraisal.

Just because you are living in the home does not mean the numbers do not matter! Plan for possibly turning it into an investment property in its entirety. You still want a cash flowing property. When evaluating net income just use a fair market rent for the unit you will be living in.

 

Do you Have any experiences house hacking?  Would you recommend it?  Planning on trying it?

How to get an amazing deal on a car!

How to get an amazing deal on a car truck or vehicle schoolie school bus public auction budget frugal conversion foreclosure cheap find http://jessicacoaches.com/2017/05/how-to-get-an-amazing-deal-on-a-car/

 

How to get an amazing deal on a car truck or vehicle schoolie school bus public auction budget frugal conversion foreclosure cheap find http://jessicacoaches.com/2017/05/how-to-get-an-amazing-deal-on-a-car/

Financing a car is one of the biggest, most common, money mistakes people tend to make.  Not only does it come with a hefty monthly payment on a depreciable asset, where you will pay a ton in interest making that car cost way more then what you ‘paid.’  High priced, new, and/or financed cars need way more insurance on top of that.

 

Want to avoid wasting your money, like a boss, and get a great used car in cash for a deal?

 

I love value, and I love sharing the wealth even more.  Here is my list of how to get a smoking deal on an automobile, some I found on my own while others were followed up with the caveat of don’t tell anyone I don’t want the competition.  Ooops.  Why do they not want the competition? They are making money off of buying and selling cars, trucks, and other things this way.

 

 

General Information for researching a car’s worth before you bid or make an offer, these websites have used car sales as well, but if you’re looking for a deal look elsewhere:

 

Kelley Blue Bookhttps://www.kbb.com/
NADA Guides – http://www.nadaguides.com

 

 

 

Government Surplus.  The government sells a lot of stuff, usually in an auction format, they do so in different places depending on the state and the department selling the item.   There are many people whose sole business it is to swoop up deals and resell things on these sites.  Including many vehicles. Some are government vehicles which have aged out due to various reasons as a standard age or mileage retirement.  Government Vehicles have meticulous upkeep records and have been well maintained; they also tend to be upfront with conditions and known problems.  They also sell confiscations and insurance write-offs.  This is also the best place I have found to look for school buses, public buses, for conversions such as schoolies for you minimalists out there.

 

MuniciBid – https://municibid.com/

 

 

worldschooling

 

Lender Repossessions.  Many times a lender ends up with a vehicle that they do not want, just like home foreclosures and REOs, these exist for automobiles too.  I have found quite a few shady websites in regards to this option, so exercise caution.  I advise you to go directly to a local bank or credit union website or call them to find these deals in your area.

 

 

Local Live Auctions.  Sometimes people or companies do not want to deal with the headache of selling their used automobiles and turn to local automobile auction houses.  These can be a great place to get a steal on a  vehicle.  The ones that I have been to have a preview day where you can poke around all the cars and then a bidding day.  A quick google search in your area should help you locate some of these auction houses.   

 

 

 

Haggle or Scoop up a deal from an individual.  Do your research and watch for a deal to come up from the owner directly.  The pros to these are you can drive the car around and get it checked up by a mechanics shop before you make the leap if you want.  The con is not every individual is honest, try to play it by the facts.

 

Facebook Groups – Look for local swip swap, local swap meets, local marketplace.

 

How have your experiences been with using any of these methods? Do you have any I missed? Have you celebrated anyone’s smart choice lately?

 

Why and How You Should Have a Big, Cheap Wedding.

You Should Have a Big Cheap Wedding why going into debt is a horrible first step in marriage. love, marriage, budget, tips, matrimony, husband, wife, spouse, vows, study, more, guests, finance, financing, downpayment, down, payment http://jessicacoaches.com/2017/04/why-and-how-you-should-have-a-big-cheap-wedding

While perusing the internet this week, I came across several advertisements for financing your wedding.  Because there is nothing that says we are ready for the next chapter of our lives like starting it with a massive debt. Curious, I investigated more.  Washington Times reported that the average price of an American wedding had reached a mind-boggling $35,329!

WHAT! On a party?

 

This amount could send that couple on good economic footing into the world.  35,000 dollars is a great downpayment on a home in most states or even a paid in full, flat-out cash price on some fixer uppers or condos.

 

It could allow that couple to house hack and cover all of their housing expenses!!! Why would anyone in their right mind finance a wedding?

Related: 4 Ways Real Estate Investing Could be Making You Money Right Now!

Where are the friends and families not condoning excess and telling the perpetrators of such wastefulness what they are doing?  TIME reports as of 2016 that 1 in 3 people have no retirement savings and that 72% of millennials have less than $10,000 in savings.

 

Where did we go wrong?

 

When did declaring our love for someone for our all our friends and families to nourish and protect become a pinnacle of American consumerism?

 

Does having the $3,000 dress instead of the $300 one say our love will last forever?  Well it better, because that debt probably will stick around for a while.

 

But guess what, it does not, in fact quite the opposite.

 

A 2014 paper by two Economics professors from Emory University found that “Controlling for a number of demographic and relationship characteristics, we find evidence that marriage duration is inversely associated with spending on the engagement ring and wedding ceremony.

 

Wait.

 

On average, if you spend more money on your wedding ring and wedding, the marriage is less likely to last!  The professors went on to hypothesize that it was possible that the economic stress of the debt from the wedding was what caused such outcome.

 

 

Do we need more reasons to be fiscally responsible, on this special day?

 

It goes on further to say:

 

evidence suggests that the types of weddings associated with lower likelihood of divorce are those that are relatively inexpensive but are high in attendance.

 

So if you want that marriage to last, go cheap, but don’t skimp on the people.

 

I didn’t know all this when I got married, but this is exactly what I had.

 

A big, cheap wedding.

 

This is what I did to get the wedding that I wanted without busting my budget, all said and done I think I ended up paying less than $2000 for 80 people:

 

Buy many of the things you would normally rent.  And then sell them back on ebay.com, craigslist.com, or a Facebook group.  Net after the sale will be a fraction of the cost to rent.  It is usually pretty easy to do in bulk, but you can get more back separate. I got all sorts of things on Amazon.com: Wedding Fairy Lights,  Table Runners,  Table Cloth,  Vases,  and anything else you can think of!

 

Choose a cheap venue.  We did a backyard wedding, and it was wonderful.  Other places that are cheap are city parks, national parks, and some other public facilities.

 

Get a pre-owned wedding dress. Using an expensive dress for one day is wasteful.  I bought something that I had tried on at a store for half-off the tag.  And guess what you can sell it again afterward!! I used  Pre-Owned Wedding Dresses, and I have nothing but good things to say about them.  Many of the dresses offer returns.

Get a Birthday Cake! I went wedding cake shopping and was disgusted both with the level of quality and the price.  Instead, I decided to go to my local bakery and ordered three all white birthday cakes.  They were amazingly good and a fraction of the cost.

 

Rent the tables and chairs, make sure to shop around and don’t mention that it is a wedding.

 

Don’t skimp on the Wedding Photographer.  This was the one thing I wish I hadn’t gone cheap on.  Still, there are so many amazing photographers out there I would choose one that isn’t huge on the wedding circuit to get more value.

 

Food.  This was my biggest expense.  I had my favorite restaurant cater a buffet.  The meal was my chosen splurge for my guests that made my wedding feel not low budget at all.

 

Get flowers in bulk.  I ordered 450 roses in three beautiful colors from Sam’s Club.
 

 

Have family help out! Some family members will want to help share in your big day; this is an awesome way.  Those flowers need to be arranged, the chairs set up and moved, maybe you have a cousin who would rather give some time than cash for a present!

 

How do you feel about the modern American wedding?  What was your wedding like or what are you planning?

9 Tricks to Make Travel Cheap!

9 Tricks to make Travel Cheap, traveler, world, abroad, free, shoestring, budget, frugal, freedom, minimalism, passive, income, passport, visa, advice, world, vacation http://jessicacoaches.com/2017/04/9-tricks-to-make-travel-cheap

I have made a lot of money mistakes when I went traveling.  I do not want to date myself but travel blogs were not as popular, and for the most part, was flying blind other than a Lonely Planet Travel Guide.  I lost thousands that could have been avoided.  So I compiled a list of my hard-earned tips and tricks, so you, would not make the same ones!

1. Go where your money goes farther!
Choose destinations where the cost of living is low. Beer in Western Europe could cost you five times a beer in Eastern Europe. Check out https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/rankings.jsp to get an idea of how much it costs to just be in a country.

2. Travel slowly!
The longer you travel for, the cheaper it is. You get reduced rates staying places for a month or longer. The less jumping around you are doing, the less you are paying to get from one place to another. As you are there for longer, so you can take advantage of free days at museums and free festivals. Go to local parties.

 

3. Travel like you live there.
Don’t go out to eat constantly, pick up food at grocery stores and markets instead. Don’t make every day an action packed day, learn to relax. Take local public transportation instead of the tourist option.

4. Work!
Many places or business will give you room and board for work. It is easy to do, and you can even plan ahead with sites like HelpX.net, WWOOF.net, and WorkAway.info. Do not limit yourself; you can contact organizations or businesses you would like to work at and ask them directly too!

5. Cut down on fees.
Get a checking account or credit card that does not charge you extra for out or country transactions and ATM withdrawals. Or even better, find a bank which refunds any fees you may incur at a bank that is not your own. I use a Charles Schwab Investor Checking account. They have been amazing while stationary and abroad.

6. Play the dangerous game of credit card rewards.
I’m not a huge fan of these, as I always seem to end up giving them the cost of whatever they give me right back in interest. But they can be a powerful tool if you are disciplined. My husband and I took a trip to Nicaragua on points and only incurred a few airport fees.

7. Don’t have expenses at home!
Want to travel for a long time? Drop that lease, rent or sell your home, and sell off all your stuff including your car. Travel while you have no at home expenses weighing you down. You may be homeless, but let me tell you it is freeing!

8. Pay attention to Visas!
Know the status of the country you are entering and if you have to prearrange a visa, pay for a visa upon arrival, or can enter for free. I did not anticipate needing a visa, and it ended up costing me a lot of money in changing flights around as I could not afford expedition, and it would have taken a long time regardless as I was not in my home country. For United States citizens: https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/country.html

9. Don’t be afraid of people!
Hitchhike, find a travel buddy to split costs with, stay at someone’s house for free or through CouchSurfing.com. Try to network through social media to find friends and family in the area or their friends and family. Ask people who know more about the area than you to show you around. Not only does it help with costs, but it enriches the experience. Make sure to be kind and pass it on!

Ready to be Inspired?  Check Out:  My Top 5 Favorite Travel Videos!

Know someone else who might want to know how to save money traveling? Make sure to share!

My 5$ Yard Sale Table Transformation: Lessons in Frugality

My 5$ yard sale table transformation: lessons in frugality

Table refurbishing in steps. Prep, Tile, Finish.

I consider myself to be a frugal person. I make almost all my meals at home, and I try to buy used, I get water at restaurants and never get the most expensive thing on the menu, I even cloth diapered. I love the value. If I find a good deal, it makes whatever I get that much better to me. Take this table I found at a yard sale, I had been recently looking online at entry tables and found them very expensive for what you could get. I refused to waste my money when I am handy and have done a lot of little projects like this; I enjoy them. I knew I could buy all the pieces and would get it done rather than have an old broken table sitting in my garage for months till I threw it away. I also had a little mission:

Last fall I was sitting on my computer much like I am doing now, in a comfy house dress with bare feet, it was the middle of the day, and my kids were napping. I heard a clatter outside my house and stepped out onto my porch expecting to see a stray cat and instead stepped into the scene of a crime. There stood a man, he looked to be in his early 20s, but he could have been much older based on the wear on him, he had a black dolly next to him, and he was holding a package of the tiles we were using in our most recent remodel. Here is where I learned my instant reaction is to fight not flight. I started screaming and started after him. The minute he saw me, he yelled some obscenities and dropped a whole package of my beautiful tiles on the ground. I chased him barefoot into the street as he ran and jumped into a waiting truck and his accomplice peeled away. I got the license plate. Those broken tiles are the ones I used to mosaic my new table.

My table took quite a long time to build, getting materials, several stages of work, it likely was not a cost effective task, when factoring in time. Had I hired someone they likely could have done the job better than me. However the intangible benefits were strong, I made that table a symbol of lemons to lemonade, and I enjoyed the process and letting my children help. If anything it was a character building experience. Maybe I’ve got it wrong and I should be in the table refinishing business, and instead of being the first thing you see when you walk into my house I should sell it.


Money Strategies, what blend are you?

A penny saved is a penny earned:
Everyone has heard about how that 4$ coffee you buy every day adds up over the year to over a thousand dollars, right? I am all for this as long as you are only diverting things you can do without in your life, and saving for things that matter to you. Your time is money, so it needs to be factored into how much something is costing you to the get the benefits. If you can do something but would make more money doing something else, you are losing money doing something yourself. There was a time I got really into mom blog giveaways and sweepstakes. I just loved the free stuff I would get in the mail, however, after a few months of this I tallied up an average hours spent scouring for giveaways and entering them. Then I looked at the monetary amount of everything I won, including the things I would have never had bought if not for them being ‘free.’ After a little math, I found that I was working a 5$ an hour job. While not my wisest move in life, it was, however, fun winning prizes!

Spend money to make money:
There is truth in this statement, but it must be moderated. This statement is mostly used with the entrepreneurs. The catch is with any business ventures there are a lot of risks. The risk that the business does not work out or that you fizzle out before the idea even comes to fruition. I have had several business start-ups end up in a box in my storage. The main thing that will make your business succeed is you, try to scale yourself slowly up especially if you have never run your own business before. You don’t need to start out perfect or doing everything at once. Ease in, see if things you are spending are getting are getting returns, then move up.

Money does not matter to me:
There are those who just do not think about money all that much. This is, where the do what you love, and the money will come movements live. Money does not make you happy. Live in the now not in the future. I have to admit some of the best times of my life were those that I did things completely irresponsible just because I wanted too. In fact, in all my world travels I would say the poorer the people, the happier they were in general.