Friday, September 2, 2016

August side hustles 2016

The great thing about doing side hustles to generate extra income is that you can hustle on your own terms.  The more hard work, time, and creative effort you put in, the more extra money you can make.  You can hustle as little or as much as you want, whenever you want.  It’s your extra money, and you can choose how you want to spend it.  Instead of focusing on what ideas don’t apply to you, try focusing on different side hustle ideas that you can implement to work for your situation.

Welcome to September.  It’s going to be a busy month for us as my dad is going to visit from Taiwan and spend 3 weeks with us.  Did you have a good August?

August was another busy month for us filled with work, time hanging out with friends and family.  There were birthdays to celebrate.  There were new friends to make.  Our son keeps getting bigger and bigger.

August was also a month full of BIG expenses for us.  The month started off with a leak in the main water line to our house.  This was discovered when a patch of grass on our lawn became extra wet and soggy.  It turns out that 35 years ago, the builders of our home used cheap plastic piping for the main water line instead of industry standard copper piping.  This has led to several neighbors down our block needing to replace their main water line over the last few years.  It was our turn.

It cost a total of $1,179.88 for the repair.      

Our house shares 2 separate fences: one with the neighbor to the side of us, and one with the neighbor behind us.  It’s been 35 years since those 2 fences have been replaced.  Over the years, the wood has been deteriorating slowly, developing cracks, worn out paint, and leaning due to loss of structural integrity.  It cost us $1360 to replace one fence and $1347.50 to replace the other, for a total of $2,707.50. Ouch.  We try to be good and respectful neighbors and it really was time to replace those fences.  I hope the new ones last another 35 years.

Our total home expenses for last month were $3,887.38.  Every homeowner knows that repairs are inevitable.  It’s just part of the cost of owning a home.  I’m glad we have a healthy savings account so that these expenses don’t break the bank.  It’s still pretty annoying to see such a large amount disappear.  And to top it off, I couldn’t use my credit card to make any of those purchases!  If I had used my Chase Freedom Unlimited card, I would have earned 5,830 points (3887 x 1.5 points on all purchases)!  Anyways, I can’t complain.  We enjoy where we live and we intend to stay here for a very long time. 

Here’s our monthly summary of side income that we have generated in the previous month of August.
Award Travel
On 8.8, I redeemed 20,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points and paid $33.98 toward free flights for our family to fly from Taipei to Tokyo on Cathay Pacific, saving us $785.46 on the flight (after taxes and fees).
On 8.9, I redeemed 24,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points and paid $93.21 towards free flights for our family to fly from Osaka to Taipei on Cathay Pacific, saving us $907.79 on the flight (after taxes and fees).
On 8.17, I redeemed 9,093 Rapid Rewards points and $11.20 towards a free round trip flight to San Francisco, saving me $163.96.

Cash back
On 8.23, I earned $5.10 statement credit on my AMEX Simplycash Business card.  I’m not really using this card much except to redeem for AMEX Offers.

On 8.22, I received my annual fee for my AMEX Premier Rewards Gold card.  The annual fee is $195.  I want to keep this card as it allows me to keep my AMEX Membership Rewards points and also has great benefits like AMEX Offers, 3x on travel, 2x on dining, and 2x at grocery stores.  The $100 airline fee credit also allows me to earn one $100 Amazon gift card each calendar year.  Anyways, I called AMEX retentions and was offered $50 statement credit instantly, and $50 statement credit after spending $500 within 60 days.  I took the offer and saved $100 off the annual fee.  Come January, I will get another $100 Amazon gift card essentially eliminating this card’s annual fee.

On 8.28, I claimed extended warranty on an LED dome light that I purchased for our rental property on March 12, 2015.  The light suddenly stopped working.  Since this product was purchased over a year ago, Home Depot would not take it back.  I simply called Citibank and they honored the extended warranty.  I received a check for $32.36.  I always make purchases with my credit card because of the extra protection the card offers. 

On 8.30, I received statement credit of $337.50 from my AMEX Platinum card.  I cancelled it after I was approved for the Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card since I have no purpose keeping two premium travel rewards credit cards.  The AMEX Platinum card has an annual fee of $450.  The amount that I received was a pro-rated annual fee refund.  In the end I still came out profitable by spending $112.50 ($450 - $337.50) and earning 100,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points and a $200 Amazon gift card.

On 8.31, I received a statement credit of $5.02 on my AMEX Premier Rewards Gold card for redeeming an AMEX Offer (5% cash back at Home Depot after making purchases of $100 or greater).

Paid surveys
On 8.22, I received $5 PayPal deposit from Pinecone Research
On 8.29, I received $5 PayPal deposit from Pinecone Research
On 8.2, I received a $45 Visa debit card from E-Rewards Medical
On 8.12, my wife received a $25 Amazon gift card for doing a video review survey on

Side Job
On 8.23, I received a check for $412.50 for teaching at the local university.  I really enjoy teaching and working with the students.

Rental Income
On 8.1, I received a check for $600 from our temporary housemate.
On 8.4, we received a net profit of $430 from our rental property.

Monthly Totals:
We saved $1,857.21 on airfare by redeeming points towards free travel
We earned $479.98 cash back
I earned $80 from paid surveys
I earned $412.50 for teaching at the local university
We earned $1,030 from rental income

All of this totals $3,859.69 from our side hustles for the month of August.  This income really helps offset our high expenses this month.  Keep on hustling my friends.
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