Sunday, July 13, 2014

Avoid network marketing

The situation I'm about to describe doesn't happen very often, but reading this post can help you save a couple of hundred dollars.

One day, some stranger will approach you seeming overly friendly. You might start up a simple conversation and 10 minutes later, this person wants to set up a meeting with you.

Before you know it, this guy is trying to recruit you to his company to sell anything from health food to insurance products.

Most likely, they person you were talking to is involved in network marketing.

Network marketing usually follows these characteristics.

1. They place a huge emphasis on recruiting lots of people
2. The recruiter talking to you will hype up the business and make it sound super easy
3. You will most likely be required to become a business owner
4. The pay structure is 100% commission. There is no base salary or hourly wage
5. Theses companies usually have high turnover rates
6. They try to hook you in by making you realize how much you hate your job

At face value, it may sound like a pyramid scheme.
Its not, however it can easily leave you feeling screwed over after a few months.

People can and do make lots of money in sales and networking, however they had to work incredibly hard to receive the six figure salary they boast about. They don't emphasis this part.

These companies are supported by people who make sales. To get the most sales, the company needs the best sellers.

The only problem is that no one knows who the best seller is going to be. For this reason, multi level marketing companies must recruit as much as possible to find the best sales executive.

Out of every 100 people recruited, maybe only one will be that superstar sales executive.

What tends to happen is that network marketers need to recruit as much as possible. They start trying to convince people to come into the business even when they don't want to in the least.

If you aren't that ambitious man who is willing to put in 100 hours a week to the business, you are not going to be successful at network marketing. It is not for you.

Realize that the recruiter does not care about you. He only cares if you can produce for his company. If you quit and fail, he will just recruit someone else.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Cost of durable goods

One thing I encourage generation Y to do is to not rush out of their parents house as soon as possible.
The biggest reason is because of the cost. At the age of 24, 22, or 18, a young kid doesn't have that much money.

I guess it is common for these kids to finance everything with credit and pay the credit cards as soon as they make money.

If you do want to leave, I'd insist on doing it very cheaply like renting a room and nothing else.
If you rent a room, it is most likely already furnished.

If you decided to rent an apartment/house or buy a house, the house is going to have to be furnished in order for you to live comfortably.

If the house or apartment has nothing in it, you will most likely want or need the following items (assuming you can take nothing with you).

1 bed
1 sofa
1 stove
1 washing machine
1 dryer
1 table
1 chair
1 refrigerator

You may also want the following items.
1 microwave
1 toaster
1 tv
1 computer

So, lets see how much these items cost as of 7/12/2014.

1 bed $134 at Walmart 
1 sofa  $80 at Kohl's. This was the cheapest I could find. Other online prices go from $300 to $800.
1 stove $358 at Sears
1 washing machine $400 at Sears
1 dryer $270 at Sears
Table and chairs $129 at Walmart
1 refrigerator $400 at Sears

Total cost of essential $1,771

1 microwave $57 at HHGREGG
1 toaster $23 at Walmart
1 tv $180 at Amazon
1 laptop $280 at BestBuy

Total cost or extras $540

Total cost $2,311

Now, these are the prices of everything new. If you search around, you might be able to pick up everything used at half the cost ($1155.50).

These are the costs if you furnish your new place with just the bare minimum amount of stuff.
Once you get it, these goods are durable. They won't break down every year and you won't spend $2000 per year maintaining or replacing this stuff.

But $2,000 is a big hurdle when a man at the age of 20 decides to strike it out on his own and commit to a mortgage on a house.

When you live with your parents, you get privilege of using all this stuff that is already paid for.

Keep this in mind before moving into a house or apartment.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Choosing when to take social security benefits

This advice won't be very relevant to my generation directly.

It is said that it is more common for Generation Y to believe in alien life than receiving anything from social security in the future.

Social security is a flawed system that will most likely bankrupt itself in the future.

However, some of my readers may have parents reaching their 60's and will have to decide when to start taking benefits.

This article will help them decide when to take benefits.

When you take out social security benefits, you will be locked into the regular payment for the rest of your life.

For most retirees today, the age to retire and collect social security is 65.

You can collect social security at the age of 62. The amount you will receive will be much less than if you had waited until 65.

Conversely, you can wait until the age of 70. The amount you will receive will be much greater than  if you had taken it out at 65.

I don't think there is a gradient. I don't think you will get a middle amount if you take the benefit at the age of 63 or 67.

Everyone's situation will be different, and everyone will have a different opinion on when is the best time to take out social security benefits.

I would recommend taking the benefit as soon as possible for the following reasons.

The biggest reason is that you get a couple of extra years to collecting the benefit.

This brings me to the second reason.

In your 70's and 80's, you are old. You should have your finances together and not need to depend on social security benefits for your whole retirement. It should just be some extra icing on a birthday cake.

Speaking of being old.

Reason number 3.

You don't know when exactly you will die.
Should you happen to actually die at the age of 74, you would not have had the chance to collect benefits.

Reason number 4.

Social security is currently an unsustainable program.

On each social security letter, it states that without major changes to the program, by the year 2038 or so, Social Security will only be able to pay out 3/4 of what was promised.

Taking social security as early as possible lessens the risk that you will not be able to collect everything promised to you.

Overall, social security is an unsustainable program that is bankrupting our country. Each year, our government spends almost $900 billion on the program.

However, if you have the chance to collect it, do it and do it smart.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

How to increase your intellegence

I've found that the easiest way to increase your IQ is to stop paying attention to the mainstream media.

Go ahead and discontinue your cable service if you still have it.

Cable TV is retarded. The worst instance of this I can think of is TMZ.

Luckly, I've never sat down and watched a full episode of TMZ, but from what I know; TMZ is a program about a group of paparazzi that dig up whatever trivial fact about celebrities.

Speaking of celebrities, I could never get involved watching anything on TV like:

Dancing with the Stars
American Idol
Master Chef
MTV (Jersey Shore, Teen Mom 2)
Extreme Couponing
Here Comes Honey BooBoo
Anything Miley Cyrus or Justin Beiber is doing right now

I could only imagine that the average American that does keep up with this stuff dedicates at least one or two hours a day to keeping up with celebrities.

That is at least one or two hours that could be dedicated to something more useful like working out. Or:

Spending time with your family
Planning your personal finances
House work
Freelance work
More interesting hobbies
Internet research

The biggest source of garbage I want everyone to avoid is the news.

Most of the news on TV is not news. It is complete garbage that bears no relevance on the life of the average American.

The worst case of this is, when a few months back, a girl was being interviewed by CNN because she worked at a clothing store and worked the cash register while Barack Obama paid for some clothes.

This story went on for about 5 minutes. The whole time, I was just thinking. "Why is this news?"

Anyway, if you watch the news for one day, you have seen every news story you will ever see.

On any given day, the news will put on the following stories.

1. Someone went crazy and shot/stabbed some people in some school/mall/gas station/neighborhood.

2. Some celebrity is hooking up/breaking up/cheating/marrying on some other celebrity.

3. Celebrity DUI or criminal activity.

4. USA is screwing up some country in the Middle East or some Middle Eastern countries are screwing themselves up and USA is thinking about intervening there.

5. One political party is blaming the other political party for screwing up America.

6. There will be a social justice story most likely involving the LGBT community, racism, sexism, immigration, or a combination of all four.

7. Some big corporation will be blamed for trying to make money.

8. Lastly, there will be a common sense story. A scientific study will show that jogging for 15 minutes each day will lower your risk of heart attack or turnips will decrease your risk for stroke.

There you go. I've spoiled every single day of news for you.