Tentmaking Tips

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5 Myths About Tentmaking

general tentmaking Aug 05, 2022

Many people don’t understand tentmaking & have never tried it themselves, so myths can circulate in their minds regarding what it’s all about. I want to help dismantle some of these myths.

1. Tentmaking will require me to come off the payroll at my ministry.

That’s simply not true. Tentmaking is not an all or nothing proposition. Some people want to continue getting paid by their ministry but want to generate some extra income from tentmaking for family vacations or other extra costs that might not fit in the budget. Tentmaking allows you to generate additional streams of income & how much you make in tentmaking is really up to you.

2. Tentmaking will take way too much time.

This is also a myth. I generate full-time income through tentmaking and it takes me a few hours each week. From the beginning of my tentmaking journey, I made sure I never spent so much time that I felt distracted from my ministry. I wanted tentmaking to be like a hobby and I only...

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A 2.5% Savings Account Return

life hacking Jul 29, 2022

I shared with you in July 2021 about HYSAs (High Yield Savings Accounts). I told you that one of my favorite HYSA was the Marcus account by Goldman Sachs.

Well, I wanted you to know it just got better.

Last year, the APY (annual percentage yield) on the Marcus account was .50%, not too great. Yet it was still better than a lot of the rates out there.

Due to changing market conditions, the Marcus account is now yielding 1.5%, triple what it was last year.

But it gets even better.

If you don’t have an account and someone refers you, like me, we both get an additional 1% for 3 months.

That means we would both get 2.5% for the next 3 months.

But it still gets better.

You can then refer other people to the Marcus account once you have yours — up to 5 people per year. And once you refer them, you and them both get an additional 1% for 3 months which would be 2.5% right now. You could keep this rate just by referring one new person every 3 months. Pretty cool!

The rates on the...

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Family Ski Trip to Colorado

travel hacking Jul 22, 2022

Last year, because we had accumulated so many travel rewards, I gave each of our daughters the opportunity to plan a trip anywhere in the US. My youngest daughter chose Southern California & I wrote about that trip in the blog — How I Booked a Free 9-Night Trip to California.

My oldest daughter wanted to go skiing.

Our family loves staying in Hyatt hotels, so we looked for a Hyatt near good ski slopes. We found a Park Hyatt, one of our favorite Hyatt brands, in Beaver Creek, Colorado. My wife and I grew up skiing in Colorado but neither of us had been to Beaver Creek. What we loved about this Park Hyatt was that it was a ski-in/ski-out resort. Meaning, you could basically ski up to the hotel. Often on the ski trips my wife & I took growing up, you’d have to drive 45 minutes down the mountain to where you were staying after you finished skiing for the day. We thought it would be fun to get to stay right on the slopes.

We booked the trip for this upcoming...

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Extra Income for a Stay-at-Home Mom

agent hacking Jul 15, 2022

My wife always dreamed of being a stay-at-home mom. I shared her dream and we’ve always lived on one full-time income.

As the kids started growing up, she was interested in finding a way to make some extra spending money without giving up her dream.

We didn’t need the money, but she thought if she could work for herself a few hours on the side, it would be more like a hobby than a job. And it would give her some extra cash.

Her mom was a real estate agent. She was a full-time teacher but became an agent for extra money on the side. Her mom helped friends and family buy and sell houses and she made some great money doing it.

Her mom always told her she wished she had been able to be a stay-at-home mom. That’s probably part of what influenced by wife’s dream.

My wife has always loved house projects and so watching her mom in real estate inspired her to give it a try herself.

She took an in-person class to get her real estate license while our daughters were...

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Don’t Forget This When Selling Your Home

house hacking Jul 08, 2022

One tip to sell your house for more money the next time you’re ready to sell is to have it staged.

Staging is the process of furnishing and decorating a house to appeal to current retail buyers.

One mistake people make when they sell their homes, in my opinion, is selling it vacant or with furnishings/decor that won’t appeal to buyers.

Sometimes people think that moving all of their furniture/decor out & selling it vacant is best because the buyer will see it as a blank slate. In most cases, this isn’t true. Or people think that they have great taste & just leaving their stuff in there should be fine. This can also be untrue.

Most buyers will pay more for a house that is professionally furnished & decorated, also known as being “staged.”

A seller in my neighborhood, who is also a real estate agent, recently had an updated rental property he wanted to sell. The tenant had just moved out, so the house was vacant. He also believed it was not...

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A Triple Dip Investment

life hacking Jul 01, 2022

What if I told you there was an investment vehicle where you could contribute pre-tax, it grows tax free, and you can withdraw it tax free when used for certain expenses? You’d probably want to use it, right?

There is such an investment that I’ve used over the years and I love it!

It’s called a Health Savings Account or HSA for short.

You can invest in an HSA if you have a qualifying high deductible insurance plan with your employer (or with your own insurance provider if self-employed). You should check to see if your current health plan has an HSA option or if it makes financial sense to switch to another health plan with an HSA option.

The contribution limit for an HSA each year is $7,300 for a family (this is the 2022 rate & it usually goes up each year).

So, check this out:

- When you contribute $7,300 over the course of the year, it reduces your taxable income by that same amount - awesome!

- Then as the $7,300 grows in a good, low-cost index fund,...

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Do You Need a Real Estate License to Quick Flip?

Short Answer: No, and it could actually be a disadvantage starting out.

Longer Answer:

Retail real estate and investment real estate are two different businesses.

In retail real estate, you are representing clients who are buying or selling houses.

In investment real estate, you are buying and selling houses for yourself for some investment purpose.

In retail real estate, you need a license because the state regulates the industry to ensure you are a qualified fiduciary for your client.

In investment real estate, since you are working for yourself, your activity isn’t regulated in the same way.

Getting a real estate license is typically for the purposes of engaging in the retail real estate business.

Quick Flipping is buying and selling houses yourself for a profit which is the investment real estate business.

The reason I’m making these distinctions is two-fold:

1. Sellers who are selling you a distressed, off-market property at a discount are usually looking for an...

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How to Begin a Tentmaking Journey

Maybe you’ve thought about doing some tentmaking on the side but you’re not sure where to begin.

I’d love to help.

By tentmaking, we mean earning money to support your ministry from outside your ministry. This could be supplemental income if you already have a ministry income. Or it could completely replace a ministry income and you could derive all of your income outside of your ministry.

Here are 4 steps to begin a tentmaking journey:

1. Determine how much extra income you need

Are you just needing an extra $5,000 each year? Or are you needing part-time income? Or do you need full-time income? This will help you decide what types of tentmaking opportunities to pursue.

2. Determine how much time you have to generate this extra income

Do you only have a few hours available each week or could you spend more time? Depending on the type of ministry you’re in now, you may either have quite a bit of flexibility to pursue tentmaking on the side or you may have...

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Couples Trip to Broadway in NYC

travel hacking Jun 10, 2022

When our family heard that Hugh Jackman was starring on Broadway in the classic musical, The Music Man, our family members started booking tickets. So far, 7 family members have gone in the last couple of months.

My wife & I enjoy Broadway shows as well, and although we’ve been to NYC several times, we started getting the itch to go again.

We had actually planned a couples trip to the Caribbean, but due to some fairly stringent COVID restrictions in the place we were going, we decided to rebook to NYC. This was somewhat last minute, so the point totals I’m going to share are likely higher than you might pay if you booked further out. But I wanted to give you another example of how we booked this trip for “nearly” free.


  • My wife used 42,526 points (because it was last minute) on her Southwest account for a flight to La Guardia...
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Finding Buyers for Your Quick Flips

flip hacking May 27, 2022

An important step in building a flipping business is to find investor buyers looking for off-market, discounted properties that need work.

I encourage my students to find buyers way before marketing to find deals from sellers. What good is a deal if you don’t have someone to sell it to?

In most markets, there are many investors looking for properties they can flip or hold as rentals.

Here are 3 of the best ways to find them:

  1. ListSource.com
    1. This is a website where you can generate lists of property owners in certain states
    1. Choose your City & State to narrow the search
    1. Then choose Last Market Sale Date of 12 months back
    1. Add Equity Percentage of 100%
    1. Filter this list for Absentee Owners only
    1. This will produce a list of people that have bought investment homes with cash in your area in the last year
    1. Contact those people to see if they want to be added to your list of buyers
  1. Facebook
    1. Many cities have Facebook groups for Real Estate Investors in that city
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