March 09, 2009

New Internet Venture - Make Extra Money

A month or so ago, I offered an opportunity to become involved in a new internet venture; I look foward to working with the group of people who have joined me on this wonderful ride.   This new spin on an old idea will be LIVE by the summer.   Although there is no longer an opportunity to become involved with the venture, you can still register now to receive our Free Gift when we go Live on the Net!
It's free to register, you'll receive a free gift in the early summer, and you'll learn how to barter goods and services to reduce your cash outflow and get stuff you want or need.  If I haven't convinced you to register at, you might do so after seeing what I've received with no cash outlay over the last few weeks only!
  • a couch reupholstered
  • fitness classes for my students
  • large dents on my car repaired
  • driveway resurfacing
  • carpet replacement at my cottage
  • plumbing repairs
Regsiter with today and save thousands tomorrow with this innovative approach to a time-tested concept.  

March 07, 2009

Market Update & Personal Finance Suggestions


For many months, there have been warnings of a market meltdown, or an impending crisis.   Unless you live in a cave, you know by now that there are problems both in the US and globally.   Financial markets like the TSX went down over 800 points this week, house prices all over Canada are falling, the US situation is a disaster, with people loosing their homes left, right and centre, and debt load consumers are bracing for job losses in all major Canadian industries.   And although, we're not facing the same horrific situation here in Canada, we are definitely feeling the pinch on the credit lending side.   There will be less lending, more prudent decision making, and tighter controls.   As of October 15th, Canadian lending institutions will administer the change in law on lending practises, to buffer the Canadian economy and avoid the credit crisis facing the Americans.   (In parts of Southern California, for example, half of all house sales are reposessions!   HALF of all house sales!   And listen to this:  a majority of all houses are full of stuff the owners leave behind, including TVs, flat screen TVs, and other high-ticket items.   What's the reason?   They can't afford movers, so they just pack their car with whatever fits and leave the rest behind.)  Surely these are all signs of omminous times. 
What does that mean for us?    Well, I think it means time to plan ahead.   We're likely a few months behind whatever economic horror is occuring across America.   According to Warren Buffett, the "Americans are heading for an economic Pearl Harbour."  If Pearl Harbour or something like it is in the near future, then we should clean house to make sure we are padding ourselves with cloaks of safety.  
Here are some personal financial suggestions:
  1. Clean house:  review all of your monthly expenses and reduce them in any way you can.
  2. Get rid of excess stuff you don't need by selling on e-Bay.   You'll generate income AND clean house.
  3. Start an internet business and spend a few hours per week working on it... it may provide you with a few extra thousand in a year or two.
  4. Do not pay off all your bills with any windfalls:  buy some property instead. 
  5. If you have any savings accounts, switch them to banks paying high interest on savings accounts (without the bother and chains of locking in).   This means you leave TD or BMO and head over to, or   All of these banks offer regular savings accounts that pay out 3% interest.   It's better than nothing and it's NOT locked in.
  6. Review all your credit outstanding and make a plan to get rid of them.
  7. Consider buying stocks now or in the next while... as things are sliding.    When stocks go down, we forget that it's actually the best time to buy!

Here are some real estate suggestions:

  1. Refinance today!    Get a credit line quickly.   If your house goes down in price and you lose your job, at least you'd be able to use the credit (from today's value of your home) to purchase something which will generate income. 
  2. Buy cash flow property now!   
  3. Sell off large scale equity property that have no possibility of becoming cash flow property.  

Take heart, things will get better.   In the meantime, make sure you clean house and review your holdings.  Slight adjustments now will guarantee your financial future will be that much brighter!

Ten Rules for Creating Wealth

A few rules I've learned about creating wealth:

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Rule # 1:   Decide what you need the money for and designate it as your goal.  (If you're working for something you want, you'll be more dedicated to it.)

Rule # 2:   It's never too late to start.  

Rule # 3:   You can always start fresh every day.  (If you didn't succeed in a venture, it was because you did something wrong.   Determine what that was and don't repeat it in your new venture - which you should force yourself to complete, without allowing your failure/poor performance to dictate your future.)
Rule # 4:  Spend less than you earn.   (It's surprsing how many of us do not do this.)
Rule # 5:  Borrow only for good debt - which means don't borrow for bad debt, unless you can profit from it anyways somehow.
Rule # 6:   Don't pay a lot to learn something from someone.   If you're taking a course, make sure the fee is reasonable or even inexpensive (<$1000 for example   If you're paying anything more than that for a course or mentoring, then you are subsidizing someone else's great business idea.)
Rule # 7:   Have a set time of day or week to work on 'getting wealthy' and stick to it.   (If you consider it a part-time job you've committed to, say every Saturday from 1:00 to 4:00 pm, then you will grow wealthy more quickly.)
Rule # 8:   Create to income streams to generate more money, then allocate that money to your investment goals.  
Rule # 9:  Understand that there are no secrets and that it doesn't work overnight.   You have to fine-tune your thinking constantly over time until it's right and until it affects your decision making all the time.  Building wealth takes time and learning how to build wealth is a process.
Rule # 10:  Remember the best advice is free!   If someone is telling you something, you only have to question their motives and understand if they are legitimate.   (If you are paying some top dollar for a course, their motive may be to help you get rich, but it also may be the $4000 you just paid them to tell you stuff you can learn from each other for free, or for small amounts.  I also once met someone who spends a lot of time counselling other investors in real estate investment, but doesn't actually own any property!   So remember to ensure legitimacy.)
Follow the rules and financial freedom will come!

December 24, 2008

Money Really Does Talk

Truth be told, I was once labelled a 'granola woman' by a quick-witted, very intelligent but very difficult student.  He laughed at my insistence that making money was not the be-all and the end-all and that the passion I had for my work was what really mattered.   He would laugh and confidently say "You don't know what the f.... you're talking about!" (My students are somewhat  He would continue, "Money talks.  And granola sure doesn't."

It took me awhile to realize that, although my passion was real and spiritually fulfilling, money does the real talking.  

For example, I once tried to explain to my bank manager (who had not been pleased by my series of returned cheques - someone had returned a cheque on me and of course, I had no back-up, so the ripple effect took place), that my job was incredible and that money wasn't everything!

He said "You're talking to your bank manager, not your soulmate and you're in the bank staring me down because of your mistake, you're not on a dock watching the canoers go by."   It was just a few minutes later that my lovely student made the granola comment. 

I thought long and hard about how I was sandwiched between my young, wild-child brilliant student and my stern older, conservative bank manager.   They were both on opposite ends of the pendulum, but they were both saying the same thing.

It was just after that when I answered the phone to Toronto Hydro threatening to cut off my hydro at my place of business because the bill hadn't been paid.   I immediately visualized walking into the bank and the Hydro company and offering a granola bar as payment!   I laughed out loud.  But, I had learned a valuable lesson:   money talks, not granola!