31 December 2014

2014 Highlights

This year was filled with adventures & memories that I will never forget. I would not change it for the world & can only hope to create new once next year :) As I have mentioned before, the reason for my long absence from blogging was due to a very much needed vacation that turned into a two month getaway. I don't regret it one bit & would do it all over again. Most of which, I returned to the happiest place on earth, meeting new friends, revisiting The Bay, going on my first road trip, driving over 100 mph (I know, against the law but come on now haha), living, & being 20 something! I have not seen my best friends for 2-3 years & my sister & her kids for 5 long years so 2014 was exactly what I needed.

Thank you again 2014 for being such an incredible roller coaster ride. I can say, it was one of the best year of my life & I am forever thankful for pulling myself away from my comfort zone. I learned to rely on myself & enjoy the company of being alone. I learned to go beyond what I was used to, be open to new experiences, clear my mind, welcome new obstacle, & that it is okay to make mistakes. I finally realized that life does not wait for anyone & we will never be able to relive the same memories again, so it is perfectly okay to get lost in the moment. You can never love anything or anyone else until you learn to fully love yourself first. 2014, you taught me self-worth above all things & I will cherish you forever. 




26 December 2014

Financial Focus

We're nearing the end of 2014 and I cannot be anymore excited about 2015. I actually have this feeling of treating my life like a book & when it's a new year, I always look at it as a new book, not a chapter, but an entire book. Am I the only one who feels like this? I have learned a lot of personal things in 2014, but not so much about financial matters. So 2015, I am focus a lot of my energy this coming year to getting on the right path financially. You know that American dream? Financial freedom, that's totally on top of my priority list at the moment. Second, working hard to start up my dream job :) Oh, I didn't mention? I dream of starting my own jewelry brand, but we'll talk about that later on in this blog.

Back to it, here are my 2015 goals to achieve. I am going to try to be as realistic as possible, I don't like disappointment.

  1. Pay off #3 debt: $6,000
Seriously, it is within reach to erase one pesky debt. It's so close that I can almost feel it, taste it, & close to doing a happy dance. The goal here is to pay off this debt in 6 months or less.

  1. Pay #4 debt: $2,500
Debt numero cuatro! I know it feels like it is never ending, but we are closer than we were seven years ago.
In less than a year, 1/4th of the total loan has been paid for. Once debt #3 is paid for, the main focus will
all be on #4. The joy of thinking about debts that you accumulate in your 20's huh? Goal for 2015 is to
pay a total of $2,500, which will bring down the last loan to $9,500.

  1. Emergency fund: $2,000
I just found the importance of starting an emergency fund. We found ourselves stuck in a runt a few
years ago when my dog, Patron had to be rushed to the vet because of a threatening boil on his behind.
I wasn't balancing my money, too well & I had to smash every ounce of ideas I had to come up with the
the money.

  1. Raise & maintain credit score: 850
I never knew how important a credit score was until I researched how to get a business loan, a house, &
almost everything else. America likes to base a lot on your financial credibility, right? Haha. But with all
the savings & paying off debts goals, we need to make sure we raise & maintain that score. The way I
see it, a well kept score will help me start a brick-and-mortar business, pre-approve on a home loan, & a
Range Rover one day.

  1. Moving day
If paying off loans wasn't enough of a stress factor, I really want to aim for a new place this coming year.
I think it's time for a change, right? What better way than to up & leave. I just want to feel more brave,
I guess or just adventurous. Probably just wanting a way out. Who knows?

  1. Budgeting
Refer to #1-5, this is how it will make them possible. Learn to budget every month to achieve every single goal that's been set-up. I cannot stress enough how important it is to budget everything from groceries to random expenses.

Who else is making separate 2015 Goals? I'm making about 2-3 just to point it out. There's Financial, Business, & Personal. Everyone's different, so what's yours? Let me know because I always could use some new ideas to add to my long list of goals. You see how I call it goals rather than dreams? It just sounds more realistic to me to just call every single one of my dreams as goals, hmm.



20 December 2014

How I built my credit score

Just to point it out, I never owned any credit cards, any types of loans, or signed up for any bills. I used to pay everything with cash or debit card (by everything, I mean E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G! From groceries to my school tuition that I paid under my parents' name,  long story.) I was always the type of person afraid of the IRS coming after me & pretty much the entire C.I.A. looking for me, haha. Can you call me paranoid? Nah, maybe just being "too safe."

Fast forward, I have come to the conclusion that I want to open up a brick-and-mortar boutique shop within the next 2-3 years. After researching how to save at least $20k, I realized that was not going to happen anytime soon so another option was to get a loan. Thing is the lender will look at your credit score, etc. the entire 9 yards.

So that's basically the story behind the reason why I started focusing on building my credit. This post are for those who has NO CREDIT SCORE whatsoever. I'll lay it out the same way my lazy mind would understand it, step-by-step.

  1.  No credit? No problem. Got a checking & savings account from your bank? Perfect! If not? Sign up for one. 
  2. Ask a bank teller from your bank if they offer secured credit card. If so, ask if you could sign up for one. (Not all banks offer them.)
    • Secured Credit Card: A type of credit card that is backed by a savings account used as collateral on the credit available with the card. Money is deposited and held in the account backing the card.
  3. The credit limit will depend on how much you deposit to your account. But again, it varies ranging from $300-$500. (Refer to the definition above)
  4. Use only half of your limit & pay it off at least 2 weeks prior to due date (apparently a lot of lenders like that haha.)
  5. Repeat step 4 every month & you can start building credit in no time. Please spend & pay wisely.  Always Budget & Manage! 
For extra information such as credit limit & annual free, this is the link I referred to prior to talking with a bank teller : 10 Questions about getting a secured credit card

I slowly began building my credit & within 6 months, I got me 806 :)! It could be different for everyone & it really depends how your lifestyle is like (pst! if you're a total shopper like me, or just a wild spender haha.) The secure credit card I signed up for comes with an iPhone App & Free FICO score. After I figured out how to work the App & finding out about the FICO score (which you will have to wait at least 2 months or your second statement to view it), I decided to apply for a Discover card.

*TIP: Discover card has no annual fee!

As of today, six months since I started building my credit, I finally feel like somewhat of an adult? We'll see how that goes in another six months. :)



12 December 2014

Ca$h in your closet

We all have a closet full of unused or forgotten clothes (some with tags & other's pushed to the back of your closet or drawers.) I am pretty guilty of this, but I also have a problem with shopping for "just because" type of moment. I don't recommend it by the way.

I started using the iPhone app "Threadflip". Here is the overview of some of the things I have recently "flipped" or sold in 2014:

There are a lot of sites much like Threadflip & I have tried them all such as Posh Market, Yardsellr (which is no longer available), & Depop (UK base & harder to sell to U.S. base customers).

If you are looking to clear our your closet, Threadflip would be an awesome selling platform for you to check out. In a year, it is not much, but I was able to rake in $200 from a few of my clothes that were still in great condition.

How it works:

  1. Download app "Threadflip" on iPad or iPhone. You may also post thru their website on your computer. So three possible ways to post! 
  2. Sign up. If you're interested click thru here to sign up: Threadflip make me money
  3. Use the app camera to upload right now.
  4. Set your price & you have to choice to either have Threadflip send you a mailing package, free shipping, or buyer pays shipping. 
  5. Buyers can place an offer & sellers can counter or accept. 
  6. When item is sold, provide tracking number, Threadflip takes 20% cut so be mindful when setting your price that offers free shipping. 
  7. Once buyer receive their product, you get the best email: Cha-ching!
It's not a get rich outlet but hey it helps clear out your closet. It's a bonus getting a few money back to you, right?! The way I look at it, it's a side savings account for me :) Win-win.

Have fun ladies :) Do follow me on my Threadflip if you sign up.