Archives Top Finance Blogs is the best resource for binary trading.

How Real Estate Can Be a Passive Investment

skyscraper-450793_640Today we have a guest post for you from Listen Money Matters about how young people can finally get over their fear of investing. Enjoy!

As human beings we tend to live by the clock. We eat, sleep and work on a schedule and usually after noting that it’s “time” to do so.

Because our time is precious and limited, we also tend to constantly strive toward getting more done during the waking hours we have, often taking one more than one task at a time, or trying to find ways to make a passive income. Passive income is income received without having to do active work. So why not apply that to our investing as well?

A passive real estate investment is one way to do that. Passive investing is easy because once you buy your investment, you don’t have to spend much (if any) time managing it while being able to reap the rewards. This may sound too good to be true, but I will share how real estate can be a passive investment choice for you.


If I want to buy a $15 pizza and so does my friend but we each only have $10, one way to still be able to afford the pizza is to share it. By putting our money together, we can each have a slice or two of the pizza and still be able to afford a drink to go with it. That is kind of how crowdfunding in real estate works.

Each investor puts their available investment money into the pool, which allows you to purchase real estate that would not normally be within your grasp to buy on your own.  Like sharing the pizza, each investor shares in the profits from their investment. There are several crowdfunded real estate companies in existence that can help you figure out which properties are good passive investments and you get to sit back and enjoy the profits.

Single Family Rentals

When you consider the positives and negatives of owning a rental property you might put the day to day management headaches in the negative column. That is where Roofstock can be a good choice to help you. You can utilize their knowledge and expertise in several ways, including choosing a property to purchase and also in the management of that property. This allows you the benefit of investing in a rental property and receiving a steady income without having to worry about the hassles of the day to day management of that property. Instead, you simply allow Roofstock to handle the hassles of being a landlord for you. In addition to saving you time in the management of the property, they will also save you time during the purchasing process by handling much of it for you. This allows you to passively invest in a property without having to do the heavy lifting of paper work and property management.

These are just a couple of ways you can invest in real estate as a passive investment.

Can you think of other passive investment options for real estate?

Kayla is a personal finance blogger in her mid-20s who loves to write about money topics of all kinds.

Term Life Insurance and Why It's Right For You

This article was sponsored by SelectQuote but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

life insuranceWhen it comes to planning for the future, there is a lot to think about.  And there are a lot of things we would prefer not to think about.  Retirement?  Fun to think about.  Wills?  Life insurance?  These are things we don’t want to think about.  No one wants to plan for the end of their life, and when it comes to life insurance, we really don’t want to think about our lives ending earlier than we would like.

What is life insurance?  Very simply, it is a policy that pays out upon the death of the policy holder.  How much depends on the policy you buy.

Who needs life insurance?  Does someone rely on you financially?  Do you bring in the money in your family?  Then you absolutely need life insurance.  But what if you’re a stay-at-home parent?  You don’t have an income.  However, I think every stay-at-home parent would agree that their work is vital to the family.  If that parent isn’t there anymore, who will care for the children?  And how will the family afford that?

What about someone like me?  I’m single with no kids.  But if something happens to me, I still have a house payment and a car payment.  Sure, my heirs could sell those things, but it would be nice if they didn’t have to do so right away.  Then there are the costs of death – medical expenses and funeral expenses.  I don’t want to leave that to my family.  A simple life insurance policy could leave everyone in a much better position.

Life insurance can be very expensive.  But if you choose the right type of life insurance, you can have peace of mind for a reasonable price.  There are two basic types – permanent and term life.  Permanent is life insurance that lasts for your lifetime. It doesn’t matter if you die at 50 or 100, you have life insurance.  Naturally, that’s much more expensive.

Term life insurance is much simpler.  It lasts for a specific term (usually between 10 and 30 years), and you pay a set premium based upon the likelihood of you dying within that term.  So if you’re 35 and you decide to get a 10 year policy, your premium is relatively low, because the odds are good you will live to be 45.

Why would you want to get term life instead of permanent life insurance?  Cost is one big reason.  Permanent life insurance is expensive.  But also, your needs will change over time.  Maybe right now, you’re 30 and have two small kids.  In 30 years, the odds are good that those kids will have moved out of the house and no longer need your daily financial support (let’s hope, anyway).  Maybe you don’t have kids, but have a mortgage and other loans that you will have paid off in 20 years.  A 20 year term life policy will prevent all of that from falling onto your spouse.

Think you’re too young for life insurance?  Check out this article about why life insurance is a no-brainer for millennials.

But where to get term life insurance?  A lot of companies provide term life insurance and it’s tough to tell which one is best for you.  That’s where SelectQuote comes in.  SelectQuote has been around since 1985 and they do the hard work for you.  They work with you to determine your needs without pressuring you to buy more insurance than you want.  They get quotes from the most highly-rated insurance companies for you.  And the best part is that with SelectQuote, you get an agent who is there to answer all of your questions.  Life insurance is complicated.  Let SelectQuote help simplify it a bit.

How does it work?  Go to the SelectQuote homepage and fill out their simple form.  (In the alternative, you can call directly, but I like the online option.)  After answering a few questions and providing your contact information, a SelectQuote advisor will contact you to discuss your needs.  It’s super easy and no pressure.  From there, you will need to choose your life insurance company (don’t worry, they help with this decision).  They’re all highly rated, so you can’t make a wrong choice.  Next up is the checkup.  SelectQuote will send a licensed paramedic to you for an exam and some bloodwork.  You’ll get a free copy of all of this information.

Why do they need your medical information?  Well, that’s how your premiums are calculated.  If you’re excessively healthy, you are cheaper to insure because the odds are good you will live a long time.  If you’ve got some health issues, you can still get insurance, it just may be a bit more expensive.

Then you get your final policy and price information.  Depending on what state you live in, you have up to 30 days to get a full refund, so there’s plenty of peace of mind that you’re making the right choice.

The best part?  Once you have your policy and your cost, it will not change for the life of the policy.  Not every life insurance company offers this.  If you have a 30 year term life policy, your annual premium will stay the same for the entire 30 years.  It doesn’t matter if your medical information changes.  You will not pay more.  So it makes sense to lock this in while you’re young and healthy.

What happens when your policy expires?  SelectQuote gives you a couple of options.  You can convert to a permanent policy or you can renew on a yearly basis.  Your premium is no longer guaranteed at this point, but you don’t have to have another medical exam which is great.

No one wants to think about needing life insurance.  But getting a policy in place now provides you with the peace of mind that if anything happens to you, your family will be taken care of.



Real Money Games Getting More Popular Every Year

money saving tipsReal money games getting more popular every year, and it is turning into a positive feedback loop. The fact that the games are really popular is only serving to enhance the resources available for producing real money games. As such, it is getting easier and easier to produce these games. As it gets easier to produce them, more and more people are going to do so. As more games get produced, the new games will attract more and more players. The additional players will only make the games more and more popular. Real money games getting more popular every year, and this is the kind of trend that manages to feed on itself.

Playing online pokies in particular is more and more popular all around the world today. In places like Australia, online casino slot games have practically become cultural institutions. Still, online casino slot games are some of the most popular of all online casino games, with people all over the world eager to play them and enthusiastic about all of the new offerings of the casino games. Other types of new games do get introduced these days, of course. However, the real money online casino slot games are the ones that are made in record numbers these days. Real money games getting more popular every year, and slot machine games are largely responsible for driving that tremendous growth.

Real money casino slot games have a lot of advantages compared to other games. It’s very easy to adapt them to different formats and to different themes, for one thing. It is equally easy for people to pick up online casino gaming in the form of real money online casino slot games. These are games that are pure adrenaline, and many people respond to them very positively. Poker and blackjack can often require years of study in order to achieve a certain level of excellence, but this is not the case for online casino slot games. It is easier for people to take up games like this for the first time, and so these are the sorts of games that people are going to take up more readily than most of the others. Real money games getting more popular every year, which is only going to expand the reach of the online casino slot games that so many people love so much.

Online poker, blackjack, and roulette are all really popular real money casino games, and these are games that can still come in many different varieties. It should be relatively easy for people to find versions of these games that they really love. They will certainly be able to find all of the classic versions of these games represented among a lot of the newer versions that people will find today. Gamers are going to be in luck regardless of the games that they prefer. Real money games getting more popular every year, and gamers are going to be able to benefit from their multi-faceted rise in many different ways as the years go by.

Emergency Evacuation Documents

emergencyevacuation-documentsThis past week, many of us in the United States had our eyes on the southeastern part of the country as Hurricane Matthew set its sights on the Caribbean and the US coast.  A number of my friends were in mandatory evacuation areas, and one shared on Facebook that they were loading up all of their important papers and their pets and getting out.

That small statement made me realize that while I have done plenty of emergency preparations for if I get stuck in my house for 72 hours or more and I have an emergency go backpack with food, water, and other necessities, I haven’t given much thought to the documents needed if I do have to evacuate.

First off, how should you store all of this important paperwork?  Right now, I have a lot of my important paperwork stored in a locked fireproof safe.  This seems like a good start, but it means I have to be sure that the key for the safe is also part of my evacuation plan.  A better option would be a fireproof safe with a combination lock.  Why a fireproof safe?  While you likely won’t need it for the evacuation itself, it’s a good place to keep important paperwork while it’s stored in your house.  It’s pretty heavy, so it’s fine if you’re evacuating in your car, but if you’re going to end up on foot, you may want some plastic document holders as well so everything stays dry.

But what all should go in there?  Remember, it’s not just what you might need while evacuated, but things you don’t want to risk getting destroyed.  Here’s my list so far:

  • Birth Certificate, Social Security Card and Passport (Marriage certificates also fall into this category)
  • Wills and Power of Attorney Paperwork
  • Mortgage Information
  • Insurance Policies
  • Financial Information – Account details for bank accounts, credit cards, retirement accounts and investment accounts
  • Basic Medical Information
  • Tax records
  • Car Title
  • Educational Information – transcripts, certifications, etc.
  • Work Information – Resume, hiring information, etc.
  • Emergency Contact Information
  • Home Inventory (something I personally need to update)

I have plenty of work to do to get this all into the proper order.  I definitely have all of this information, but it’s stored in various places around the house, and some of it isn’t even stored in hard copy.  Since I do an online backup of all of my data, some of this may be superfluous (I have scans of my resume and educational information), but it’s not a significant amount of information and it’s never bad to have a hard copy backup.

In fact, I should probably scan a lot of this and create a digital evacuation document box as well.

Of course, there are plenty of other things I would want to load up if I were evacuating.  Sentimental items and photographs.  Not something I would be able to do if I were quickly evacuating, but something I could do if I were evacuating for a hurricane and had a bit of warning.

Still, it’s never bad to be prepared and to have a plan.

What items do you have in your emergency evacuation document kit?  What do you think I should add to mine?

Setting a Goal

work-inprogress-1This past weekend, I did the craziest thing.  I raced a half-ironman triathlon.  I swam 1.2 miles in a river, biked 56 miles, and then ran 13.1 miles.  And I finished with a smile on my face.

Now, this wasn’t just something I did on a whim.  No, this is something that I’ve been planning for a at least a year, and something that I have been seriously training for over the past 8 months or so.  It was a huge project and something I’m so proud of accomplishing.  There were plenty of times during my training that I wanted to quit, that I thought perhaps I had taken on something too big, or that I screwed up my training plan and felt like I had taken two giant steps back on my path to my goal.  But I persevered and I made it.  I reached my goal and I feel great about it.

This is an idea that can also be applied to my financial life, and maybe it applies to yours as well.  First off, pick a goal.  Not something like “Save more money.”  That’s too vague.  Set a specific goal.  Maybe you want to increase your emergency fund by $500.  Maybe you want to make one extra mortgage payment in 2017.  Maybe you want to buy a new couch or go on a vacation.

Next, figure out a deadline for that goal.  You’ve got family visiting next July, so you want to buy a new couch on June 1.

Now, figure out how you’re going to get there.  What does the couch cost?  How much do you need to put aside every month to get there?  For ease of math, let’s say you need $400, so you need to put aside $50 a month.  So in October and November, you put aside $50.  But in December, something happens.  Maybe you spend too much on Christmas shopping, maybe you discover your snow boots have a hole in them and buy a new pair.  Whatever it is, you now haven’t put aside your $50 for December.  Does that mean you have to put aside $100 in January?  The idea of trying to find an extra $100 in your budget terrifies you and you just want to give up.

But you don’t have to put aside $100 in January.  You still just need to have $400 by the end of May.  You already have $100, and you have five more months.  Instead of $50, you put away $60 each month. Maybe one month, you find an extra $5 in your budget, so you put that aside too, just to plan ahead for a month where you might be low.  In March, you really want to go out for a fancy dinner with your friends, but you know that you’ve already spent your dining out budget and you really don’t want to risk falling behind on your couch savings fund.

You make the plan work for you.  And in the beginning of June, you have the money put aside for that fabulous new couch.  Maybe the saving wasn’t easy.  But maybe there were days when you looked at those numbers and were proud of yourself.  And you sit back on that new couch and bask in the glory of hard work and determination.