Wow, it’s somewhat hard for me to believe it’s already 2014! Since the inception of this blog, this is now going to be my third Goals list I’m filling out. Time sure does fly. It seemed like only yesterday when I was just getting started, trying to get ANY cash flow going… One of my first goals was to simply build a $60,000 dividend portfolio.
So, now it’s 2014 and I can honestly say I’m excited for the new year. For the first time since I started working, I actually got to take an extended vacation (18 days in Hawaii) and can now begin a new year without feeling completely depleted.
But enough rambling, let’s get to the goals for 2014!
1) Acquire Two Additional Rental Properties
Hmm, this one is kind of anti-climatic, huh? If you’ve been following this blog for awhile, I’m guessing you are somewhat surprised that I’m not aiming for more this year. What gives?!? Wasn’t this supposed to be Year 3: The Accelerator?
Martin, if you are reading this, can you believe I’m aiming so low?!?
Well, for one thing, my cash reserves are now sitting at alarmingly low levels. After Rental Property #5 closes, I’m going to basically just have scraps to work with. And as we know, the more rentals one owns, the more things there are to go wrong! So, for this year, I want to backtrack a little bit, and go with a more sustainable (safer) strategy.
Buying two rental properties in a given year is still considered pretty good, in my book. If I buy right, I can potentially increase my passive income by $1000 or more. So, not all is lost. And there is still a way for me to get to 10 rental properties prior to retirement at age 30…
2) Forward Looking Semi-Passive Income of $3000/month
By the end of 2014, I would like to own six rental properties. If everything goes right (I’m aiming high), I should be close to, or just at $3000/month in forward looking semi-passive income. If I can get to this point, I will have a lot more confidence in being able to pull off my retirement sometime in 2015. As a refresher, we closed 2013 with a forward looking income stream of $1573.87/month. I still have some aces up my sleeve that I haven’t fully revealed to readers just yet… although the next moves to get to “checkmate” would be pretty obvious to anyone reading comments, and following along on some of the discussions I’ve had in the past.
3) Cash Reserve of $40,000
By year’s end, I would like to have $40,000 in straight cash, or in a dividend portfolio. It’s very important to stay liquid, and I will definitely need a strong cushion before I am even comfortable with the thought of attempting early retirement. There are so many things that can go wrong, I need to be as prepared as possible.
I look at it this way — If I attempt early retirement and things go wrong, I’ll have cash to hold me over. Since I’m planning on starting my adventure overseas in a cheaper country, I really don’t anticipate spending much money. I’m thinking less than $1000/month in expenses will be entirely doable. I might even aim for $600/month. If you do research into some of the countries in SE Asia that I’m looking at, you’d be amazed by how little most folks get by with.
Anyway, if things get bad, I’ll have some cash to back me up. If things continue to get progressively worse, I’m definitely not afraid to halt my early retirement and hop on board back to the States to seek employment again. Granted, it probably won’t be in high-tech, but I’d be open to seek employment in a different field.
A lot of people look at what I’m doing and think everything is just one big risk after another. However, what they fail to understand is that even if things don’t work out for me, the alternative isn’t exactly the end of the world. At worst, I’ll have to postpone my vacation and go back to the grind… A place where these folks already feel right at home!
500 1000 Visitors/Day on Blog
I’m not going to set any monetary goals for this blog, but I would like to build it up some more and attract more traffic. I really appreciate all the readers that follow this site, and I would love to grow it even more. I’m hoping to get to
500 1000 visitors/day by the end of the year. No, it doesn’t have to be unique visitors, just total visitors. I’m already thrilled with the number of visitors I get now. 🙂
5) Be Happy!
This goal is generic, but so important. I think it’s easy for us to get lost in the hustle and bustle of work… With enough time, we can even forget something as important as happiness. Happiness is essential to life… without it, there’s really no point in living. You know, I had a wonderful time in Hawaii. I loved slowing down the pace of life, enjoying my daily breakfast, and just being at peace for once in a long time.
For this year, I want to continue and make strides in this department. I want to take what I got out of Hawaii and carry it over into my day-to-day life in fast pace Silicon Valley. More specifically, I want to focus on my health. I’m starting to take breathing/meditation classes and am already feeling more calm and relaxed. I’m not going to sweat work so much anymore, and am even planning on taking some unpaid days this year. I will travel more and see what this great country has to offer.
I don’t care about my reputation at work. I don’t care about pay raises. I don’t care about climbing anymore ladders. I want my peace of mind. I want to be happy!
2014 is going to be a wonderful year. Let’s go make it happen!
What are you goals for this year? What do you want to most accomplish? Are you optimistic for the new year? What are some of the challenges you’ll be facing?