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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Increasing Income

If you are reading this it is probably fairly safe to assume that you have some level on income. Although the unemployment rate is very high now (~9% if the official figures are to be believed), the remaining 90% of people still have an income. Even some of the unemployed have income in the form of unemployment benefits. 

That is why a lot of what I will cover in this blog will be about saving money; because it is something that can be applied by everyone, and because it is something that Americans have become terrible at. We are great at making money, terrible at saving it.

If you truly want financial independence however, it is imperative to save AND try to create addition income.  Especially if your current income is very low. For an individual making 25K a year and already living very frugally, it is probably easier to create an additional $2000 of income than it is to shave another $2000 off your yearly budget.

Conversely, if you are making 150k a year, and living the typical lifestyle of Americans in that income bracket, Then you are probably paying 2000 a year on pet food, car washes, yard maintenance, cable, etc. So in that case it is probably easier to trim some fat from your spending than it is to increase your already-high income.

In either case though, increasing income will bring you to your goal of financial independence more quickly, so look for the opportunity to do so whenever you can. Actually, scratch that. MAKE the opportunity. Many people go their whole lives waiting for opportunities.

In the future I will go in depth on the different ways you can increase your income, particularly using the internet. But for now here is a list of ways that you can explore to increase your yearly income, at least temporarily:

- YOUR JOB: Try to get a promotion, a pay raise, work more hours, get certificates or skills that will get you a raise, whatever you can do to get more money from your existing job. Especially if you have a high hourly wage or salary, where even a modest % raise or a couple hours or more work will give you a decent chunk of change. On the flip side, if you are making minimum wage at McDonald's, you may be better off spending 6 hours a week on other money-making ventures rather than working 6 extra hours, as that would only give you like 35 bucks or so after taxes.

- GET A NEW JOB: Most people get stuck in the mental rut of just existing. but there is no reason why you can't poke around and see if you can get more money doing something else. And even if not more money, maybe better hours that allow you to work on other ventures, or closer jobs that take less time and money to commute to. 

- SELL SOME STUFF: This is a one-time influx of cash, and can't be done forever as you will eventually run out of cash, but it is a great boost to savings and it will help you live more free at the saem time. People are slaves to their stuff. You may be surprised at how much stuff you have that you just never use that can be sold for quite a bit of money. Sports and exercise equipment you never use, clothes, the jet ski you never use, whatever. Just make sure not to replace it with more useless junk. In the future I will go over many ways to sell things, and how to maximize your profits doing so.

- MAKE A WEBSITE, BLOG, OR VIDEOS: It is incredibly easy (and free) these days to make sites blogs and videos. Something that I will go into much much more later, and is covered in detail in my book "The Secret of the Internet". With adsense, youtube partners, and other easy to use it is easy to get a couple bucks a month with a blog or youtube channel that doesn't even take that much time. And if you do spend time and effort, you can go from a couple bucks a month to literally a full-time income.

Always work to CREATE new sources of income. The more varied the better. You will have less chance of total failure, and more chances of one source really taking off and creating great wealth and independence.

-The Money Monk

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