Last year, I was able to wipe out my credit card debt, and this is something that I am truly proud of. It ballooned to be close to a million pesos, since I wasn’t following my own golden rule, which was to separate personal finances from business finances. Before I knew it, I was getting eaten up by interest. This is the reason why you should manage your debt immediately.
Managing your debt will give you peace of mind. I read in this article that nearly two-thirds of all marriages start off in debt. This may be a cause of stress in a marriage — from spouses hiding expenses from each other to not being able to fulfill dreams and plans and not being able to reach retirement peacefully.
How I dropped my Credit Card Debt to Zero
For full disclosure, I am not a financial advisor. I’m just a regular mom with a daughter and another baby coming soon. My husband and I run our own tech startup company, but we also “freelance” on the side as speakers, business consultants and content creators.
So now that you know a little bit about us, here are the things that I did.
Study more about managing debt. If you want to finally manage your debt, you need to understand different methodologies and terminologies, how to consolidate debt, ways of paying off debt, etc.
List down all of the debt that you have including the interest rate. Oftentimes, we just look at the amount that we owe, and we fail to see that what’s eating us up are the interest charges we incur every month. It’s good to write these down so that you have something visual to refer to. Our credit card statements are really unclear and so long that it confuses a lot of people, so check and read each item and the conditions clearly.
Don’t rely on your paycheck. What we did was to look for other sources of income that can at least pay off our credit card debt. We didn’t rely on setting aside an amount from our paycheck. This allowed us to pay our debt faster.
Look for loans with lower interest fees. Another thing that you can do is seek out a loan to be able to pay off your debt with higher interest rates. There are other credit card companies that offer balance transfers and even offer cheaper interest rates. So look at the rates!
So these are most of the things that we did to pay off our credit card debt.
How about you? Do you have tips to share with us? How do you manage your debt immediately?
I started investing in US and foreign stocks a month back via GoTrade. If you want to start buying foreign stocks, too, you can use my invitation code, 458377 so you can use this app, too. Anyway, I’ve noticed that I’m the kind of investor who was doing Momentum Investing at first. This is the reason that I got to buy AMC stocks, much like my favorite YouTube vloggers.
But as soon as I saw and researched that the best way to go if you are more on the conservative side, is just do Dollar Cost Averaging.
What is Dollar Cost Averaging?
Dollar-cost averaging or Peso-cost averaging (since most of my readers are from the Philippines) is when you amke the same amount of investments at set regular intervals. Example, if you make a $10 investment on Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF every 30th of the month on Go Trade, that is cost averaging.
Why do people like this way of investing? I personally think that no matter how you try to predict the market, you can’t be 100% right. So the regular investments that you make at regular intervals just captures the market prices at all levels whether it rises or dips and thus, you mitigate the risk by “averaging” the prices out.
I personally find this investing strategy comforting. I used to check the markets daily (maybe I still do… haha!). But, now, I am more at peace and comfortable.
Also, there are other types of investing and some methods may work well for other people.
The other one is Momentum Investing, just like how I did it when I was starting.
Momentum buy stocks when they know that the prices are going to go up and sell stocks when the prices drop. I was fascinated at first by checking charts and studying trends, but then, personally I got tired of monitoring. But there are people who are really good at this. Stock traders and brokers are very experienced when it comes to this and they probably enjoy this as much as I enjoy watching shows on Netflix or playing games online. You can try this type of investing, too, but just know that there are risks involved.
The other type is value investing. I was watching a video yesterday of this vlogger going through some undervalued stocks that people don’t notice. That vlogger is a value investor and always looks out for these types of stocks. In the article that GoTrade shared with us, they mention that these “undervalued stocks are stocks with prices they believe are below the intrinsic value of the security”.
So when you buy stocks that are undervalued now and then they grow in value, your investments grow. In this kind of investment, you just need to know and look at different kinds of stocks and search for the ones that are undervalued.
And another type is Growth Investing. Just like the Venture Capitalists who are looking for the next big “unicorn”, growth investors are looking for the next big stock. These investors look at the trends and look at the growth potential of the company. Usually, since these are newly listed companies in the stock market, they don’t give out dividends.
And the last type that I know of is called Dividend Investing. Aside from Dollar Cost Averaging, I actually am also trying this out. I look for stocks that give a high divided yield, and then I DCA on those stocks. Usually, those that give out dividends are more established brands. But note that the frequency of dividend payouts are not guaranteed. If a company decides not to pay dividends for the year or quarter, it’s their choice.
So these are the types of investment strategies that I know of. Did I miss anything? How about you? What type of an investor are you?
If you’ve heard of Axie Infinity, we are playing this for two things: one is because it’s a fun game and two, to check out the earnings potential of this game. As you know, this blog is about Mommyhood, Business and Finance (basically everything that I care about), and this is one of the things that we’ve been studying as a family for exactly 15 days now. We started our Axie Infinity journey last June 20, 2021 and in a span of 15 days, a lot has happened, including this launch of the Team Arbo Axie Infinity Incubation Program.
So I started my Crypto Journey just this year. I don’t think I’m late in the game, because just these past few months, the Crypt Market dropped to figures that they had a few years back. I saw this opportunity to enter into the market. At first, I would check the markets everyday (I still do but not as frequent anymore as I did before). I would check charts every single hour. But after a while, I realized that I should do what I do with my other investments, which was cost averaging. So with this, I started just cost averaging and sticking to the top currencies (Bitcoin, ETH, ADA and around 7 more coins). BTW, for those who want to start buying crypto, it’s never too late to start. You can use Binance and please use my referral link. For full disclosure, I get a little bit of credit when you SPOT Trade or buy currencies in the market.
Okay, back to my story. So I then got interested with online games where you earn Crypto Currencies. Saw Earth 2, and I think it works on the blockchain, but I’m not really sure. I bought some piece of land, and I also wrote about it in this blog. I also made an account on Cryptokitties, but didn’t really do anything there. Then I heard about Axie Infinity from the group of Ken-Ken Somera called Cryptamad. I checked it out and I was surprised that the initial investment was at Php 35-40 Thousand Pesos. I wasn’t ready to invest at that time, so I wanted to be a scholar instead (more on Axie Infinity Scholarships later). Just a few days after, we decided to invest just to try it out.
We started with a budget of Php 20 Thousand to buy 3 cute Axies. You need three to start playing. Being gamers, we looked at the cards and decided to buy a good enough team, and started playing.
How to Get Started
I won’t go through the step by step journey, BUT you can just watch this. EJ did a great job of explaining.
EJ and I also were interviewed by our friend, Fitz Villafuerte in this podcast:
So the investment that you need for Axie Infinity is around $1000 or Php 50,000 to start. This will allow you to buy 3 Axies (those cute little characters). It’s a bit steep, especially when you just want to play, and because of this, there are what are not called scholarships. Scholarships are basically investors/managers who buy teams and let other people play it.
To know what scholarships are, here is another video that I did with my friends Ken-Ken Somera and Louel Guiting.
Hope all of these Axie Infinity Resources help.
Our Current Funds
So as promised, I’m going to share with you what we have earned in 15 days. So our initial investment was at Php 20,000. You can’t a good team anymore with this price so the average now for an okay team will be around Php 45,000 to Php 55,000.
The good news though is that the price of SLP (coins that your earn from this game) is increasing. It was at Php 6 when we bought in. Now, it’s at Php 8.00 (I just placed Php 7.50 on my sheet since I want to be more conservative).
So as you can see, in 15 days, we almost recuperated back our investments.
What will we do with the money after?
We plan to earn enough to buy a new team and cascade it through the Team Arbo Axie Infinity Incubation Program.
What is the Team Arbo Axie Infinity Incubation Program?
Yesterday, we announced our own version of the Axie Infinity Scholarship program called the Team Arbo Axie Infinity Incubation Program. It’s quite different from other programs since we are looking for future potential managers.
Full details on this video of EJ.
We also have this deck for you to go through and see if the Team Arbo Axie Infinity Incubation Program is for you.
We will be deliberating on who to choose for this batch and for the succeeding batches. For full disclosure, this Incubation Program is in collaboration with our friend Fitz Villafuerte and another friend, Bored Ape (not his real name since we can’t disclose).
We really hope to bring more jobs to people so stay tuned for more announcements. We usually stream on https://facebook.gg/TeamArbo so please follow EJ and I there.
For those who want to invest and generate jobs for others, and not really play the game, feel free to contact us. You can just PM us through the Team Arbo Page or the Mommy Ginger Page on Facebook.
I’ve been watching videos that talk about real estate lately. As you all know, I’m having my second child soon so we’re thinking of logistics. Situations and milestones like this also make you think, not only about life in the short term, but also your life in the future. In our case, we were thinking of a place where we could retire, too. I’ve been seeing a lot of families who are following the Financial Independence, Retire Early (FIRE) Movement. With this, I’ve starting to research about these things and topics related to this, such as how to find the right place to raise a family.
Our goal is to “retire” by the age of 50 (in ten years). And when we mean by retire, it doesn’t mean literally not doing anything, because I think I can’t do that. This workaholic nature that I have (LOL!) might get bored easily.
So today, I will share with you some of the things to consider when finding the right place to raise a family.
We’ve been happy with our home here, for both short and long term plans, we have been researching about places here in Manila, houses and land in Portugal (viewing the Our Rich Journey vlogs), real estate for sale in Whistler (because Canada seems like a nice place to retire) and some places in the US.
Here are some things that you can consider, too, to find the right place to raise a family:
Consider timing and space. We’ve been happy here where we live, and we think that we will stay here until we have a third child. We plan to have three kids so by the time we have our third child, I think we will definitely have to move since we won’t have enough space in this house for us and our three kids.
Check if stores and places that you need to go to frequently are accessible. This is one thing that we enjoy now. We can just do down our condo unit and there is a supermarket, drugstore and restaurants. The school of our daughter is also just a few minutes away by car, and it’s actually walkable just in case no ride is available. The walk is also very pleasant since you pass through malls.
Check if the place is safe. Read news about the place, check with people who know people who live in the area. With social media, it’s so easy to find out all of these information.
For leisure time with the family, check if there are things and activities that you and your kids can do. I’m sure you just don’t want to stay home so see what activities you can engage in with your family outside of your home.
Is it in a nice neighborhood where properties may go up in value. Even if investment is not the main goal, if you’re purchasing something and you know that you’ll be able to sell this in the future, go for assets that might go up in value.
So these are some of the considerations that we have to find the right place to raise a family. How about you? Are you thinking of moving soon? Are you thinking of purchasing a home for your family? What other considerations can you share with us?
It’s been a few weeks since I mentioned that I am testing out this new Stock Trading platform where your can purchase US and Foreign Stocks. I’ve been wanting to purchase US Stocks directly, but the other platforms don’t offer buying fractional shares to non-US residents. Gotrade is the only platform that I saw that offers non-US residents to trade fractional shares. You can dowload it now from the App Store or Google Playstore.
What are fractional shares?
Let’s say you want to buy Tesla Stocks. A Tesla Stock, let’s say, is around $600 per share. So in order for you to buy a Tesla stock, you need to have $600 to purchase and start trading. For Gotrade, if you don’t have that amount yet, you can still buy fractional shares of Tesla.
For Filipino users, I get this question in my blog and social media accounts when I posted about Gotrade.
How do I fund my Gotrade account?
Right now, these are the options: UnionBank, BPI or International Wire Transfer (deposit in USD).
You can either deposit instantly (just takes minutes) or you can wait for three days before funds are deposited.
For instant deposits, you can deposit up to USD1,000 at any one time instantly. The difference is that in Instant deposits, Gotrade’s clearing broker will credit your deposits immediately into your Gotrade account. They will advance the funds for you.
In order to see how much you can instantly deposit, tap on the “Instant deposit to Gotrade” option on the funding screen. The amount you see there is the outstanding limit available to you right now. It will be replenished to USD1,000 again once all your deposits reach the US – 3 business days after your last instant deposit.
Please see also that UnionBank and BPI have their respective fees.
To see your funding activity, you can go to this part of your app. You can see your total deposits, total withdrawals and net deposits to Gotrade.
So far, it’s so fun using Gotrade. By the way, the markets open at 9:30 pm since they are following the time markets are open in the US. They close at 4:30am.
Once you have funds in your Gotrade account, you can proceed to buying shares. I’ll discuss that in another article!
Again, here is my invitation code that I want to share with you: 458377. Just download the app in Google Playstore or Apple App Store.