Archives for February 2021

Dear Penny: My Husband Says Stocks Are a Scam, Refuses to Invest

Dear Penny,

I’m having trouble convincing my husband that we should start making investments. He thinks the stock market is a scam, but I’ve had several college classes that discussed Wall Street and several of my friends are doing OK with their portfolios. 

It was a struggle to even convince him to move from a traditional savings account to a high-yielding one. I would never bet with money we could not afford. How do I convince my husband that building wealth is a risk but a worthy one?

-K.

Dear K.,

Some people don’t invest because they truly are risk-averse. They lose sleep when the stock market has a bad day, let alone when it has a complete meltdown like the one we saw last March. Your husband could fall into this camp, particularly if he’s ever seen someone close to him lose money on a bad investment.

Sometimes it’s sheer laziness. That possibility crossed my mind for your husband. Not wanting to switch to a high-yield savings account seems less about risk and more about the fact that switching bank accounts is a pain.

Often, though, it boils down to this: We’d rather spend our money now instead of decades from now. It sounds like you’re relatively young — and when you’re young and your paychecks are stretched thin, it feels like you have all the time in the world. Investing takes a lot of discipline. So dismissing the entire stock market as a scam can be a convenient excuse for spending all of your money now.

Which do you think best describes your husband? If it’s the first scenario, he needs to understand that the bigger risk is not investing.

Suppose your goal is to retire with $500,000. You could save $1,000 a month for 40 years straight and still not get there. Your money would also be worth way less than $500,000 by that point due to inflation. But by earning average stock market returns of 8%, you could get to $500,000 by investing less than $200 a month for 40 years.

If laziness is the issue, that’s easy. You can budget an amount to automatically transfer and let a robo-adviser invest it for you based on your age, when you want to retire and how much risk you’re willing to take. Pretty much any major brokerage offers robo-investing. You don’t need to actively manage a portfolio.

If your husband is the type who wants to spend every cent today, that’s a bigger challenge. I think you’ll have the best chance of success if you and your husband can get on the same page about your long-term goals.

At the very least, does he acknowledge that he wants to retire someday? If so, does he have any ideas about how he plans to get there without investing?

You could suggest starting small with $50 or $100 a month. Perhaps if you can identify something that would be relatively painless for both of you to cut, you can start there and invest that money instead.

You’d be hard-pressed to find a wealthy person who isn’t invested in the stock market. Yet on some level, I get your husband’s skepticism.

I’m not going to tell you that the financial system is perfect. Of course, there will always be scams. But there are plenty of regulatory agencies protecting investors, including the SEC, which regulates the market, and FINRA, which sets the rules for brokerages. You can avoid scams even further by investing across the stock market using an index fund instead of just a handful of companies. Avoiding dirt-cheap penny stocks will also help you avoid being scammed.

Consistently putting money into an S&P 500 index fund is the most proven way to build wealth over time. If you’d invested at any point in the index’s history and kept your money invested for 20 years, you’d have earned a profit every time.

I’m hoping that your husband’s resistance stems from the fact that he’s unfamiliar with investing. Maybe he’ll come around once he sees your money isn’t vanishing into a slot machine each month.

What I don’t want is for you to shoulder the burden for managing your money alone, and I get the sense that may be happening. At a minimum, the two of you should sit down to review your finances once a month. You can go over your spending and talk about your bigger goals. If he still doesn’t want to invest, press him on it: How exactly does he plan to build a nest egg?

Don’t let him off the hook here. He doesn’t get to put your future at risk over his hard-headed beliefs.

Robin Hartill is a certified financial planner and a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. Send your tricky money questions to AskPenny@thepennyhoarder.com.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

6 Crowd Job Platforms for Earning some extra Income

Do you know you can actually supplement your income by working on Crowd and Micro job platforms. You don't need to have a particular skill-set to work on these websites. Most of the tasks involve you to do small things like tagging images, translating pieces of text, categorizing stuff etc.

The post 6 Crowd Job Platforms for Earning some extra Income appeared first on WebEmployed - Learn Ways to Make Money Online.

6 Crowd Job Platforms for Earning some extra Income

Do you know you can actually supplement your income by working on Crowd and Micro job platforms. You don't need to have a particular skill-set to work on these websites. Most of the tasks involve you to do small things like tagging images, translating pieces of text, categorizing stuff etc.

The post 6 Crowd Job Platforms for Earning some extra Income appeared first on WebEmployed - Learn Ways to Make Money Online.

4 Black Business Entrepreneurs Who Found Success on the Arise® Platform

If you’ve ever considered starting your own small business but you’re worried about not having the start-up capital or knowledge to do so, the Arise® Platform is the game changer you’ve been waiting for.

Just look at these incredible entrepreneurs as proof. By registering on the Arise® Platform, they quickly transformed their lives, taking control of their future and becoming their own boss. From feeling empowered and meeting new people, to finally building a dream home, the Arise® Platform provides entrepreneurs the opportunity to control their destiny, at their fingertips. 

In honor of Black History Month, here’s what four successful Black business owners have to say about the Arise® Platform:

“It feels empowering”

“Instead of working for another company, I wanted to have something of my own. My business was easy to start, the platform was user-friendly, and after you partner with Arise, they provided the Fortune 500 companies for you. The Arise platform has definitely benefited our community. We do provide work-from-home opportunities for those that are unemployed, underemployed, supplement income, for new moms who want to be home with their child. It definitely feels empowering.” — Teri James, Chief Executive Officer of Kingdom Impressions Ink, LLC. 

Hear more from Teri here.

“They’re always there for you”

“My calling was always technical support. During the certification process, the instructors are very much involved. They are very entertaining, very educational, and they make sure you understand the need of being the best you can be. The good thing about the Arise technical support team is that they’re 24/7. I’ve never had a program problem or system error that I could not fix. They’re always there for you.” — James C. Studaway, President, JLS Virtual Staffing LLC.

Hear more from James here.

“I get to enjoy the important things in life”

“Being my own boss allows me to work when I want, and it also gives me the flexibility to enjoy the important things in life. It’s been a game changer for me.” — Kirsten Barnes, Owner, Kirsten & Associates LLC. 

Here more from Kirsten here.

“I’m working on building my dream home”

“I started this three years ago just to bring in some extra income, [and] now I’m completely doing this full-time, and working on building our dream home. This business is so great because I’m about to actually schedule my hours, schedule when I work, around my kids. Having access to Fortune 500 companies and Arise’s platform and the technology that they provide, is untouchable, like none other.” — Terica Roberts, President and Chief Executive Officer, TNR Solutions, Inc. 

Hear more from Terica here.

Consider the Potential

These Service Partners on the Arise® Platform found success by becoming their own boss. Through setting their own hours, enjoying a flexible schedule, and working from home, they’ve transformed their lives forever. What’s more, they’ve helped thousands of people by offering inbound support, customer service, and technical support for Fortune 500 brands.

 

The post 4 Black Business Entrepreneurs Who Found Success on the Arise® Platform appeared first on Arise Work From Home.

These Throwback Hobbies Now Make Money as Side Gigs

The gig economy, supercharged by a pandemic, is breathing new life into some bygone hobbies, ones associated more with retirees than entrepreneurs.

Life indoors drove many folks to experiment with tactile hobbies like bread baking and quilting. What started as a way to pass the time could blossom into a side hustle with a little know-how.

Online platforms such as Facebook Marketplace, Etsy and Instagram as well as the revival of flea markets – often with a trendy, indie twist – offer novel ways to make money on those age-old crafts and activities.

Here’s a look at six trending hobbies that could make you serious money. These are not your grandma’s side gigs.

6 Throwback Hobbies That Make Money as Trendy Side Gigs

1. Antiquing

Buy old furniture and/or tchotchkes, then resell them for a profit. The concept is straightforward, and it’s sometimes referred to as upscaling or upcycling when you work a little magic on the item to bump up the price tag.

The Penny Hoarder spoke to Sara Chen, a master of upcycling. She focuses her efforts on flipping furniture, hunting for antique, mid-century modern dressers online via Facebook Marketplace.

When she finds a good deal, she buys it, sands it, paints it, primes it and resells it — usually for triple or quadruple the purchase price. She’s able to make $3,000 a month consistently.

Her secret (besides serious painting skills)?

“Post as many pictures from different angles as you can,” she told The Penny Hoarder, noting that taking photos is her favorite part of the flip. “It’s also probably the most important part.”

Make sure they’re high quality and in good lighting. The more the better.

2. Baking

It takes time for dough to rise.

Baking, because of the equipment required, is a hobby that can be difficult to scale into a side gig or a business. But over the years, The Penny Hoarder has talked with several bakers who made it work and a few who started during the pandemic. You can lean on their advice no matter what stage you’re at.

Sarah Tennant started baking as a hobby when she was 14 years old. She decided to try to earn a profit from her skills by taking ad hoc requests from friends, family and referrals.

In her guide for The Penny Hoarder, she outlined how her cakes, which she priced much lower than professionals, still brought her in $400 a month.

College roommates Sarah Chappell and Julia Finfrock found success with their sourdough side hustle called EarlyRisers. In October 2020, the duo started out selling plain sourdough for $7 a loaf. As orders increased, they started experimenting with flavors, adding chocolate-chip, rosemary, garlic and other flavors to the menu. These speciality loaves sell for up to $11.

“It was a lot of trial and error,” Finfrock told The Penny Hoarder.

Finfrock and Chappell are among some savvy college entrepreneurs who found inventive ways to money while in school.

3. Crafting

Thanks to online marketplaces like Etsy and Amazon Handmade, crafting is seeing a huge comeback. And we have plenty of ideas for you to cash in on its popularity.

Local fairs and online marketplaces are ideal places to sell easy-to-make holiday decorations.

Some examples of low-cost decorations include:

  • Scrap wood stocking hangers
  • Sock snowmen
  • Pumpkin spice soap

Of course, you’re not limited to holiday decor. You could also try your hand at DIY greeting cards or handmade wedding invitations. When you’ve decided exactly what you want to make and sell, keep costs low by finding cheap crafting supplies. Dollar stores are a good place to start.

Pro Tip

To find a nearby market or fair to hawk your creations, search Festivalnet.

Two women plant potted plants.

4. Gardening

Millennials love plants, according to Money, the Huffington Post, CNBC, Business Insider, the New Yorker and apparently the entire internet.

Further proof: A plant aesthetic has blossomed on social media, especially Instagram. The hashtags #Plants and #PlantsofInstagram have tens of millions of posts. Outside of the local market scene, a lot of small-scale operations use Instagram to sell their plants.

Selling succulents probably isn’t going to allow you to quit your day job, but it may pad your savings or help you pay down debt.

One gardener, Stephanie Spicer, made $1,200 in a single season. In her guide to selling plants, she outlines exactly how to choose, fertilize, present, price, advertise and sell them.

5. Knitting, Sewing, Quilting

Boo, fast fashion trends. Yay, making and altering your own clothes. As sustainability becomes more of a conscious decision for many consumers, skills like knitting, sewing and quilting are seeing renewed demand.

Pro Tip

If you want to start out small with handmade clothing, blankets or accessories, Amazon Handmade or Etsy are two of the best places to sell online.

If you want to lean into the gig – beyond a few online sales – there’s some money to be made. The Penny Hoarder spoke with retired geologist Pat Martinek, who found a way to monetize her weaving and spinning skills through her side business The Fyber Cafe. Martinek raked in $10,000 a year by using chiengora, aka recycled dog fur, to create garments and keepsakes.

“It is warmer than other fibers, so a scarf or sweater made with chiengora can help you withstand the most brutal temperatures,” she said.

Ella Trout, a college student at the University of Vermont, is another example of how to cash in on the handmade trend. She founded puppycatco, her sustainable fashion side hustle, a couple years ago.

She started by screenprinting her dog and cat designs onto T-shirts, but changed her business model over the years. Now, she sews and alters clothes to be more environmentally sustainable. Trout uses Instagram to sell her creations, and she told The Penny Hoarder that her handmade clothing and accessories earn her up to $1,500 per month.

A woman looks through the book collection at a library.

6. Using the Library

Libraries are one of the only remaining places where you can just exist. For free. There’s no expectation to spend money. That alone should be reason enough to visit.

As an additional incentive, libraries offer access to a bunch of interesting things beside books that can help you launch a side gig or business. Tools, baking equipment, seeds and even high-tech are often available at no cost through a process called intra-library loans.

“Maybe you want to make a cow-shaped cake. You don’t have to buy that cake pan,” said Bob Anstett, of Broward County, Florida’s library system. “You can check it out from a library.”

In addition to the fun stuff you can rent for free at your local library, Anstett explained that libraries have expanded to home community workshops called makerspaces. Makerspaces offer up all kinds of equipment for locals to tinker with and use to hone new skills.

“You can come in and take a basic class at [our makerspace] and use our sewing machines,” Anstett said. “Used to be that you were called a knitter or a carpenter or a woodworker. Now, you’re a maker.”

Adam Hardy is a former staff writer at The Penny Hoarder.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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