MoneyAhoy.com just turned three years old! It has been a fun and interesting ride to say the least! I had two goals when I started this blog:
- Help other people make more money, save more money, and invest their money a little more wisely.
- Help myself do more of #1 :-).
I think we have done a good job so far of achieving both goals over these past three years. MoneyAhoy.com has been awesome for me and I hope it has help you improve your finances over these past three years. Now, let’s review some of the highlights for year three in MoneyAhoy’s history. If you are interested in my other birthday posts, you can check them out here:
Top-5 Posts for MoneyAhoy.com – Year 3:
Here’s a listing of the top most popular posts that were written in the past year in terms of traffic:
- How to Save Money by Building Your Own Computer – I made this post and video after I built my own new computer before Christmas. It did well and was mentioned by someone on Flipboard and went mini-viral for two days. I saw about a 10x increase in traffic to the blog.
- My All-Time Best Ebay Flipping So Far – 4300% Profit – I love buying things cheap and selling them on eBay for a large markup. This post talks about my various adventures in yard sale arbitrage and flipping a PSP game for 4,300% profit.
- Cricket Wireless Review – Should You Switch? – This post goes over the long and interesting adventure we went through to save a bit on our cell phone bill by switching from AT&T to Cricket. I felt like it was a journey comparable to the one Frodo went on when it was finally over!
- Affordable Ways to Promote Your New Business – This is a great article about promoting your new business and was actually a guest post.
- Start and Setup an LLC on-line in Less than 6 Minutes! – This was an older post, but I spruced it up to contain more updated information, answer some additional questions, and link to a bunch of other startup business related posts.
Money Results Over the Past 3 Years
This is my favorite part of the yearly recap. Here I try to see how MoneyAhoy.com has helped me to save, make, and invest even more money in the past year. It is hard to calculate the exact values because a savings from year one will generally recur throughout future years, but in my mind that is still actual savings! Let’s look at each category to see what happened.
- Saving – MoneyAhoy has helped us to save a considerable amount each year by having us focus on things we could easily eliminate from our routine and non-routine spending. Here’s a quick summary by year:
- Year 1 Savings – $4,500
- Year 2 Savings – $13,000 ($17,400 total)
- Year 3 Savings – $15,500 ($33,000 total)
That’s right – MoneyAhoy has helped our family to save over $33,000 in total over the past three years!!! Woohoo!!!
- Making – I have made quite a bit of spare pocket money to invest through side hustles over the years. MoneyAhoy has helped to fuel the passion to drive forward and push myself to make more side-hustle money. Again, here’s a summary by year for side-hustle income:
- Year 1 side-hustle income: $2,005
- Year 2 side-hustle income: $7,050
- Year 3 side-hustle income: $9,900
Another success story here – MoneyAhoy has pushed me to go out and earn a total of nearly $19,000 in extra side-hustle income (pre-tax). That’s not enough to live off of, but it’s at the level that will pay our monthly home mortgage :-).
- Investing – After losing quite a bit of money with my investments in the 2008 downturn, I was really gun-shy about continuing to invest our hard earned money. My wife and I still invested in our 401(k) accounts, but that was it. MoneyAhoy helped me the most in this area of money management. It helped me to form a monthly investment routine since I knew I would have to report out each month the amount I had invested. Here’s a breakdown of the amount we worked to invest each year and the amount of dividends we collected (this is just in our private investment account):
- Year 1 – $38,500 invested with $850 in dividends
- Year 2 – $139,000 invested with $2,900 in dividends
- Year 3 – $113,500 invested with $8,800 in dividends
We did invest a bunch of equity we had that converted to cash after our home sale when we moved from Virginia to Georgia. This is why year two and the first part of year three are pretty inflated as we had an “extra” $130,000 to invest. I am most proud of how MoneyAhoy pushed us to invest our money for long-term success. Over the past three years we invested roughly $291,000 in the stock market and received ~$17,800 in dividends (pre-tax)! The best part is that this dividend number will just continue to grow over the years as we continue to reinvest the dividends and compounding continues to work its magic.
The big picture in all of this is that MoneyAhoy.com has drastically changed our financial lives. Our net worth is an extra ~$70,000 ($33K savings + $19K side-hustle + $18K dividends) higher just because of this site and the financial discipline it has helped us to impose. That’s above and beyond the rate that our net worth was naturally growing before we started MoneyAhoy. That’s a pretty nice result for just running a small blog on the side about money :-).
The other small piece of news for year three is that my wife and I actually started another blog about health and fitness called HealthierDay.com. I used all the lessons learned from running this blog to help that one hit the ground running. I hope that HealthierDay.com can help to give us the same discipline towards our health that MoneyAhoy has given us towards our finances.
What’s Next for MoneyAhoy in Year Four?
I hit the main year three goal of having our average monthly dividend income exceed our monthly house payment. So, we are one step closer to financial independence and it feels so awesome!
Now let’s talk about new goals/plans – I have a couple plans for year four of this blog. None of them are ground-breaking, but as they say: “slow and steady wins the race!” Here are my plans for year four for MoneyAhoy and our finances in general:
- Continue to look for ways to save more money on our routine finances.
- Continue to work to increase the presence of this blog and make more side-hustle advertising income.
- Continue to invest ~100% of my income each month (my wife’s income is devoted to paying 100% of the bills).
- Continue to promote and expand our new HealthierDay.com health website.
- Work on another side-hustle project. Currently I am focusing on learning and making a computer/cell-phone game using Game Maker Studio. This really seems to fit well with my skills, interests, and previous background/jobs. We’ll see how it pans out 🙂
I hope that you will stick with reading MoneyAhoy for year four to see what sort of progress I can make with the above goals and plans. This blog has been of enormous help to me, and I hope it has helped you as well. I look forward to many more years of blogging fun, learning, and adventure!
If you have any suggestions on how I can make MoneyAhoy.com even better, please leave a comment below or send me an email.