As I confiscate bags of candy from my kids who are intent to otherwise gorge themselves with sugary delights, I turn to the October LTNE report!
Although it would be slightly wrong to characterize October as a bit of a blogging hiatus, I did manage to pump out all of my articles at the end of September and early October and allow them to pop up throughout the month. As best as I can tell, this had about zero impact on earnings and we actually had a pretty sizeable increase in traffic this month. A quick look at this month's postings also reveals that I included very few affiliate links, so I'm not surprised to see this month shaped up to be quite average.
I want to spend some time with our passive income this month for those of you who profit from these sorts of examinations.
Foremost, we surpassed our $500 monthly goal, as you can see here:
Let's break that down with a pie chart:
Let's focus on affiliate income, as that is the only income that I can realistically attribute to my web-based activities. As you can see, it accounted for 26 percent (or $145.18) of our total passive income for October.
Let's break that down even further:
Amazon Affiliate income: $103.48
Dollar Shave Club: $36.00
Breaking down the Amazon Affiliate income, a full 64% ($93.19) came from our solitary niche website, which means that the LTNE website alone accounted for only a grand total of $51.99 from Amazon. Considering the rest of the affiliate income, LTNE generated $93.69 for the month of October.
Why am I pointing this out? Foremost, to poke fun at myself, but also to show that LTNE is utterly and completely failing as an income-generating enterprise.
So, if I legitimately want LTNE (or whatever comes after LTNE, if I eventually close it down) to replace a real income, I need to come up with a new plan, because the readers simply aren't buying the one that exists now.
That said, LTNE really isn't about making money online right now; instead it serves mostly as a public record of the systems we've put into place to become more intentional, frugal, and creative financially (as I say above: we aim to inspire flourishing and purposeful lives through physical and spiritual wellness, intentionality, frugality, and creative financial action).
In that respect, October was a roaring success. Here's why:
We are still making passive income, even if the bulk of it isn't derived from this site directly:
Most of our passive income is now being generated with interest from P2P loans from our accounts at Prosper and Lending Club. As you can see, we are generating over $300 monthly now of pure interest that we are re-investing into new P2P loans:
One other good news story is the gains that we've experienced with our Vanguard funds:
These returns have occurred with the VFIAX fund (Vanguard 500 Index Fund Admiral Shares), which tracks the S&P500.
I'm so pleased with the Vanguard fund that I've just placed an additional $10,000 into their VTIAX fund (Vanguard Total International Stock Index Fund Admiral Shares), which will begin to be reflected in next month's report.
My current plan is to save enough money to then purchase their VGSLX fund (Vanguard REIT Index Fund Admiral Shares), then their VSGAX fund (Vanguard Small-Cap Growth Index Fund Admiral Shares), and finally one of their bond funds. Yes, I know there is a ton of risk with this portfolio, but decent returns can't be found with safe investments right now.
We continue to also generate completely passive income with our cash rewards credit cards, to the tune of $92.63 this month.
The best news, I think, is that even though our rental house's value went down over $4,500 this month (according to Zillow), we still increased our net worth!
A few other highlights:
Our rental home remortage is complete and we've begun to pay that down more aggressively (moving from 30-year to a 15-year fixed at a lower rate!) (I recommend Quicken Loans if you intend to remortgage).
Furthermore, we transitioned renters and have new ones in the home, paying rent, on a two-year lease! This is an enormous relief!
What else did I learn in October?
- I prefer Prosper to Lending Club, will continue to invest in both places, but will grow my Prosper account more aggressively. Click here to learn why.
- We grew our unique visitors by over 1,000 this month from the previous two months, but LTNE still doesn't generate nearly enough traffic to be sustainable as a business in the long term.
- Tuning out from some of the noise of the world is a smart thing to do. My productivity has gone way up as a result!
- LTNE posts still generate very few commenters, which is a kick in the gut.
- Watching your assets grow is addictive. I wish I had started this many years ago!
So, LTNE readers, I wish you the very best November and I hope you gain something from our writing here. Thanks to everyone who uses our affiliate links before they make purchases and to those who encourage us with their comments!