Showing posts from December, 2017

How to get started investing in Bitcoin and other Cryptocurrencies

Recently, I had the pleasure of interviewing a friend of mine Rob Kishi on Bitcoin and other Crytocurrencies. During this interview Rob gave us an insight on the basics of cryptocurrency and revealed that his strategy was to hold most of his stake in cryptos instead of trying to sell and make a quick buck.

Rob's strategy makes sense for two reasons:

If you truly believe that Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are the future, why sell? Back in November of 2013, Bitcoin went from $350-$1,242. Imagine if you owned 10 Bitcoin back then that you bought at $350 a piece. If you sold all at $1,242, you could cash in with almost a $9,000 profit. That sounds great, but if you instead were to hold on to that same 10 Bitcoin, it would be worth $174,899 as of right now. That is more than a $170,000 profit. If you hold your stake for longer than a year, you typically will pay 2.5x less taxes on your gains.That means you can reinvest more money each year and continue to grow your wealth. In conc…

What I learned from buying my first house

Should you buy a house right now? Quick answer: probably not. 

Buying a house is an amazing feeling. When I bought my first house, I hardly got any sleep the first night because I was so excited. I felt free from having to pay a landlord and excited for my investment. I had optimistic plans of design a killer backyard with a fire pit, garden, and volley ball court (the fire pit actually happened). 
I was lucky that I bought my home in 2011, when the housing market had pretty much bottomed out. My home has over doubled in value since I bought it, although I did sell it in 2014 for a 40% return on my investment. Do I wish I would have held on a little longer? Probably, but at the time I sold it I was living in San Francisco and managing a home in Washington was not easy. My dad was helping me out, but it was becoming stressful for him. So I decided to take a $40,000 profit, gave my dad $5,000 of it to take my mom on vacation and get out while I was ahead.
I learned a lot from that firs…

Litecoin up 100% in 24 hours?! Is it legit?

For those of you who don't know, I put a small amount of money into Litecoin about 6 days ago. At the time I bought it at $92 a coin. Within days it skyrocketed up to $160, so I sold it thinking I made a great decision even though it's founder Charlie Lee said this was just the beginning.
Litecoin has been compared to bitcoin like silver has been to gold. It was designed to be a faster transaction, and a currency that would allow a consumer to purchase products more effectively than Bitcoin, which is considered more of a storage device (i.e gold).
I read a few things that spooked me, so I sold. Sure enough, Lite coin rose another 100%+ to over $370. Boy, I wish I would have held. All I can do now is be patient and hope that it drops back down to a reasonable price so I can by more of it.
I would recommend following Charlie Lee on twitter. He is outspoken on Litecoin and what he says affect's the market.

Should you invest in a Roth IRA?

Back when I was 19, I read (skimmed) a book called 'The Slight Edge' by Jeff Olsen. This book talked about all of the little things you do in life that ultimately compound over years to make you a better (or worse) person. In this book there was also a chart showing the advantages of starting an IRA Roth earlier rather than later. A link to the chart can be found here.

This chart shows two people. One who started contributing $2,000 per year to their IRA Roth at age 24, and another who started contributing $2,000 at age 30. The one who started at age 24 stopped paying any money towards it at age 30 (6 years), while the other consistently contributed $2,000 from age 30 to age 62 (32 years). Now at the end when they are both 65, they have almost the same amount of money.

This chart is estimating an ambitious 11.2% year over year growth, which will not always happen. If you want to calculate your earnings on a lower % year-year growth, check out this calculator. I recommend p…

Thank you, Tim Ferris

I woke up at 7:30am this morning by my loving girlfriend. I told her to wake me up at 6:30am, but she wanted to give me an extra hour of sleep.

“5,4,” she started. “3,2,1” I finished, popping out of bed. I immediately threw on a pair of sweat pants, a shirt and a winter jacket (It’s a chilly 55 degrees in Arizona). I grabbed my phone and a pair of wireless headphone, put my shoes on and I was out the door.
I started listening to some uplifting, inspiring speeches with motivational music in the background. I needed to break the habit of sleeping in until 9am and being lazy all morning. I think I accomplished that. It’s about 9am right now, and I have already walked for an hour, drank a smoothie, read for 10 minutes and wrote this. I am on a roll!
I am journaling this because of what I just read in Tim Ferris’ book ‘Tools of Titans.’ He talks about journaling to “cage his monkey mind so he can get on with his f**king day.” This is my first attempt at it and it seems to be working.
A lot o…

Why I just bought 2 shares of Berkshire Hathaway Class B Stock

This quick story was developed from a blog I posted a few days ago called 'How I made a 36% return my first year investing in stocks without knowing what I was doing.' I thought the story might inspire some other young professionals who are looking at getting involved in investing. I posted it on Linked In, Twitter, Reddit, ect.

The feedback I received from it was surprisingly good, and there was one comment on Reddit that changed the way I now think about investing:

Once I read this, I immediately had an "oh duh" moment. I had been trying to follow Buffet's strategies for the past year and a half to learn and grow my income, how could I have missed this simple opportunity?

If you buy stake in Berkshire Hathaway's call A Shares for an easy $294,385.34, you get to attend his annual share holders meeting in Omaha, Nebraska at no charge. Here you will get to meet with 40,000 others in CenturyLink Center and hear Warren Buffett and his partner Charlie Munger speak. …

My Story and Why I Decided to Invest - Part 3

There was a point early in Greg's tenure with the company where Brian almost let him go. Brian didn't see the value in what Greg was doing. Dialing 300 times a day and not closing any deals was not a strategy for paying the bills.  But I saw something in Greg: work ethic and consistency.

Brian and I had an interesting relationship. Although he called me a loser that couldn't even hold a job at Walmart (which was true), he still somewhat valued my opinion. One day, he and his wife (who handled the company finances) told me that they were going to let Greg go. They had good reason, Greg wasn't closing deals plus his condition was becoming a distraction to everyone else. I told them they would be making a mistake. I didn't have a solution for them, but I told them Greg was good for the company, that he worked hard and could be used as a lead generator.

Brian took my advice and kept Greg. He put him in the corner office where Greg could close the door and pound the p…

Why you should opt IN if your employer offers you an ESPP (usually)

A few years ago, an email was sent out to all employees where I worked about an 'Employee Stock Purchase Plan' (ESPP). I quickly ignored the email because it looked like a hassle to sign up for.

Six months went by and I found myself talking to a co-worker who had signed up for the ESPP program. I asked him how it went.

"It's free money!" he exclaimed. So I started to dig deeper. How does it work? Is there any chance I could lose money? Those were my two questions.

He explained it to me and then I met with a few other co-workers about it as well. It turns out, the program was essentially a guaranteed 15% gain. Here is how my ESPP worked:

The company would take 15% of my salary and put it toward the fund. That means 15% of my paycheck was immediately dispersed into my ESPP account. At the end of a the 6 month period, I bought the shares of company stock at 15% below the lowest point the stock had been with the money I had invested, and was able to sell at the cur…

Should you invest in Cryptocurrency?

Bitcoin just hit $13,000! Is it too expensive to buy right now? Some people say it is going to grow to $100,000 or even $1,000,000 in the next 5-10 years, while others say it is a bubble ready to burst. I have a theory on it with the limited research I have done.

I first heard about bitcoin back in November 2013. My friend had three coins he bought for $210 that he sold for $700+. It seemed like the wild west to me at the time. I ended up forgetting about it until this year. I started following it closer when it was around $2,000 because a friend of mine was putting all his money into it. Even though I have followed  Bitcoin since it was $2,000, I have yet to pull the trigger on an investment. I did invest $500 in Litecoin about 10 days ago, and I have already seen about a 10% gain. What if I had invested $10,000? $20,000? Should I be kicking myself? My answer is no because this investment is still speculative. Optimists are sure it is going to be the new world currency, while old s…

How I made a 36% return my first year investing in stocks without knowing what I was doing

You hear stories about day traders making millions and living the dream with all their fancy cars.
Well I tried that. It ended with me losing $8,000 in one month on penny stocks. So if you want day trading advice, please stop reading this. I did however, figure a simple easy way to invest in really high paying dividend stocks like AXP, BAC, STM, KHC, ect. How did I find out these stocks were a good investment? None other than the great Warren Buffett. See Buffett publicly posts his portfolio here and his latest buys and sells here. I was able to invest in BAC and SYF almost the same time Buffett did.
I am still new to investing, and have learned a lot to make myself feel confident to make a few investments with my own research. While I am learning, I still want my money to grow for me, so why not follow the most successful investor who has ever lived?
Over the past 5 years, I have put $5,500 per year in my IRA Roth and contributed to my matching 401k for my job when it was available.…

My Story and Why I Decided to Invest - Part 2

Jake was a little odd, but he was a nice guy. He worked as a bus boy at a Mexican restaurant that he loved talking about. He was particularly excited about the opportunity to move in because that meant he got to party in  my garage every weekend.

So we started having parties on just Friday nights, then that turned into Friday and Saturday nights every week. Before long, we were having parties on random Tuesdays. I would show up to work the next day hung over, un-showered in sweat pants at noon. I would leave at 3-4pm every day. I was getting paid $2,000 a month to show up whenever I wanted. Brian was getting tired of it. I was producing, but I was barely paying for myself. With the rent money coming in, people bringing free beer and drugs to my house in exchange for a place to party, I didnt need money. I was using the money I did get to pay towards the principle of my home, which I thought was a good idea at the time.
Looking back, I cannot believe my neighbors tolerated me. Not only…

My Story and Why I Decided to Invest - Part 1

When it comes to investing, getting started can be hard. First there are questions like this:

Should I use a broker? If so, which one should I use?
Should I invest in mutual funds? Bonds? Individual stocks?
Is the market too high right now to invest in? Is the bubble going to burst?
Should I pay my mortgage off sooner instead?

The answer to these questions depends on what point in life you are in, but I believe everyone should do some form of investing. Here is a quick back story on me and why I decided to invest:

There will be a few parts to this story and it will all make sense at the end (I hope)

Growing up for me was pretty easy. I grew up the oldest of 3 children in a middle class family in Brush Prairie, Washington. Food was always on the table, my parents were very supportive and paid for all the activities I wanted to do whether it be Sports, Summer Camps, or going to the movies with friends. Aside from a small list of daily chores (that I half-assed regularly) I never really had to …