Jim @ Route To Retire

Mistakes and Lessons of a Real Estate Investing Newbie

3 Mistakes I’ve Made as a Real Estate Investing Newbie

I’ve learned that real estate rental property can be one of the best methods of passive income.  Instead of putting all your eggs in one basket with the stock market, you can set yourself up with steady rental income that can last a lifetime.  Additionally, you pick up some tax benefits and might even get some appreciation off the properties as some icing on the cake. Because of that, I’m starting to chase this a little more.  However, I’ve also made some mistakes […]

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Time to Say Goodbye to TurboTax!!

Why I Dumped TurboTax for an Accountant

I started using TurboTax in the year 2000 and I’ve used it every year since then.  Going to a tax preparer didn’t make sense – it was expensive and TurboTax made it easy enough to do my tax returns myself.  All the TurboTax alternatives (H&R Block, TaxAct, TaxCut, etc.) are all similar in that can guide you through doing your taxes to make life smoother when doing your returns. Sure, sometimes I would stare at the screen for hours and try to figure out

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Is 50¢ Too Much Money for Garbage?

Is 50¢ Too Much Money for Garbage?

50 cents…  two quarters. That’s what we pay our daughter every week to gather the trash from all the bedrooms, put new bags in the cans, and bring all the garbage downstairs to stuff in the bag to go out.  50 cents a week for one of her chores. Ah, chores – a subject of great debate. Now, there are a couple different ways to look at this.  Maybe you’re thinking… “Jim, you can’t pay your daughter to do chores!  Aren’t

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Increase contributions to my HSA - 2017 Personal and Financial Goals

Are HSA Plans the Best Bang for Your Buck?

I used to have a common guy problem (no not that one!) – it’s the one where I wouldn’t go to the doctor because “things will just work themselves out.”  Bad idea in general and, as I’ve grown a little older, I at least now do the annual checkup (something I never used to do).  Although never going was a bad idea, it did help me get ahead on something.  About 6 years ago, my company offered something called a Health Savings Account or, it’s

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Another A-Ha Moment

Another Aha Moment for Financial Freedom!!

I had my first aha moment when I figured out that there was a way out of the rat race.  I realized that reaching financial freedom and retiring early is not just a long-shot dream – anyone can do it!  That was a real eye opener for me, so I’ve been putting my nose to the grind and working on making this happen.  I’ve been building up my 401(k) plan, Roth IRA, and savings accounts.  I also bought my first rental property a number

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Banks vs. Credit Unions

Banks vs Credit Unions

I’ve had a bank account for as far back as I can remember.  When I was a kid, I had an account at a savings and loan bank (remember those?!!)  In those days, I was too young to really grasp how good we had it.  Interest rates on savings accounts hit as high as 10% at some points in time.  10%!!!!  Granted, that was an account that my mom had opened for me and had just a small amount of money in it which she

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Do You Own Cash-Flowing Assets?

Since I was a kid, I had it set in my mind that I was going to be rich.  And for years, I thought that the only way to become rich was to accumulate as much money as possible.  And while that is one way to get rich, it’s probably not the most efficient – especially because inflation loves to work against the money that you’ve saved.  It took me a long time, but I’ve learned that the accumulation of

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Shared Finances or Keep ‘Em Separated?

There are a couple of trains of thought on whether or not spouses should keep their finances separated out or whether they should be combined.  Some people are very adamant that, once you’re married, you are as one and all your finances should be joined together as such.  On the other side of the fence are those who feel that merging your money spells financial doom.  That, of course, leads to the question… Shared Finances or Keep ‘Em Separated? My wife and I keep a lot

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The 3 Simple Rules of Investing

Why I Changed the Funds in My 401(k)…

I love reading.  I’ve always been a bookworm and, although I don’t have the time I used to, I still read quite a bit.  I actually find myself reading more nonfiction than fiction, but I love a good fiction book as well.  Recently though, I read a financial book that’s stuck in my head… and I’m not sure whether that’s a good or bad thing, but it made me question my retirement funds. The book I finished reading is The 3 Simple Rules of

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73 Questions to Use When Interviewing Property Managers

Hey everyone – I’ve been wanting to find someone to do a guest post for a while now and recently I’ve been talking with Caleb Malik from Active Renter.  He’s put together an article that’s an excellent complement to my post Is a Property Manager Worth the Money? so I thought it would be a great opportunity to bring him in to share with you. So please enjoy!! — Jim   About the Author: Caleb Malik is a digital marketing coordinator for a property

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