Thursday, September 14, 2017

Are you a planner or a fly by the seat of the pants person?

It’s all in the planning. Do you believe that or do you just fly by the seat of your pants?

There are people who just take it all as it comes and deal with things one day at a time and then there’s the ones who plan – that’s us. We have always had a plan and you know, for us, our plan has put us in a really happy position in life.

Let me give you an idea of what our plan looked like over the years. Please understand that I don’t tell this story to brag or say look how good we are – I tell this story in the hopes that perhaps someone will read it and get a few good ideas that they can implement to make their lives better.

We have always lived by the philosophy of having more than one source of income because should you lose your job, you lose your income, but you don’t lose all the monthly expenses that still need to be paid.

When I met my husband of now 34 years, I was 17 and still in high school. We dated for 5 1/2 years before we married. During those years we developed our game plan.

Neither of us attended any secondary education so we didn’t end up with any massive student loans.

We would NOT take a loan or borrow money to get married. We had a wedding of 250 guests but we budgeted and with the help of both families paid for it without incurring any debt.

We planned to travel before buying a house or having kids. We were fortunate that my husband had family in Arizona and New York so we took trips to visit them the first couple years after we got married.

The next plan was to have a house then kids. So we took that plan one step further. We made sure to buy a house that had a basement suite in it for renting thereby helping with the expense of the mortgage. It’s all about multiple sources of income.

Okay nicely established – married, traveled, house, now for the babies. 5 years after we got married we had our first child. We lived close to the in-laws and we were fortunate that they wanted to be totally involved with our family and were happy to take care of our son when it was time for me to return to work. So we didn’t incur any daycare costs and our son was enveloped in the Grandparents’ love.

Now the next smart part of our life plan – and I say smart because I’m not sure many people have thought to do this. It was soon time for us to move but we still wanted to leverage our assets as much as possible. So here is what we did – we got a market evaluation on our home then we talked with our close friends and it was decided that they would buy 1/2 ownership of the property and we would jointly use it as a rental property. The 1/2 ownership then became the down payment on our next home. This next home unfortunately did not have a rental suite but we did have the shared income from the first house.

Along came baby number 2 and this time it was decided that I wasn’t going back to work OUTSIDE the home. Notice the word outside – this was when I became a network marketer – we both wanted to have a parent at home with our children and network marketing gave us that option. When I needed to be away for a business presentation it was usually in the evening when my husband was home with the kids.

We spent our children’s growing years always being available to attend all of their school functions, sports games and generally enjoying their developing years. Our summers were spent camping at the lake with friends or spending time with family and during these family/friend times all our kids developed close bonds that continue until today.

The time had come to sell the first home and then soon there was another move in our future. This move took us to our current town and once again a house without a rental suite. I was still working with the same network marketing company however I was moving to a town where I knew NO ONE.  Eventually I let that business go as I found that it was very well established in my new town. Also our plans included future travels out of the country and I found I wasn’t able to continue receiving an income from that business if I wasn’t in the country. At the same time I got a job with a local company as the kids were in school all day and by organizing our schedules we were still able to be there with them when they finished school for the day. After a few years we moved again to a house with a rental unit in it.

Eventually our travels took us to Mexico where we fell in love with the culture and the people! We spend a lot of time there so we purchased a condo there to live in part of each year.  We have it set up with a property manager to rent it while we are in Canada. This again creates another additional source of income for us.

Once the kids were grown and living elsewhere we decided the house was too big for just the 2 of us and we were in a good position financially, so rather than sell the house, we were able to purchase a condo and use the house (up and down) as rentals. We just recently moved back to the house and are renting the condo and one rental unit in the house.

I am again working in network marketing, this time with a global online business which allows me to develop worldwide and earn my income regardless of where I am currently living. Along with this I am still with the company that I started my job with 17 years ago when my kids were small. Some say why when you are doing well with your online business - again it goes back to multiple sources of income - why throw away a few hundred dollars a month, benefits, shares in the company and a pension just because I'm doing well with something else? I just structured my job to fit around MY business schedule so as not to jeopardize my business to accommodate my job.

Over the years we have always kept an open mind to various opportunities, some great, some not so great but we were always open to possibilities.

You can see by my story that we have ALWAYS looked towards multiple sources of income. You may not be in a position to do it with rental properties as we were fortunate enough to do but there will come times when someone wants to share an opportunity with you. Most often these people want to share something good with you because they care about you. These opportunities often don’t require large investments or take too much of your “spare” time, they just need a willingness, on your part, to embrace something often “outside the box”. We would just like to recommend that you listen, you can always say no but what if you said yes?? Could it change something for you? Make things better with a little extra effort??

As our story continues to unfold we are continuing to look at new avenues of earning; new areas to travel to; new people to meet; new adventures to enjoy! We are always looking for opportunities and are always willing to share our opportunity with others looking for a lifestyle like ours!