Make Ends Meet: Passive income could be your ticket to early retirement

Make Ends Meet: Passive income could be your ticket to early retirement

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Unless you're lucky enough to have a full pension and benefits, most of us will need to work until at least age 66 to save enough money for a comfortable retirement.

According to Forbes, 64 percent of all Americans will essentially retire broke. Local author and entrepreneur Rachel Richards said she believes setting yourself up for a financially comfortable life is not as hard as most of us make it out to be. She’s especially passionate about passive income.

“My passion for finance, my earliest memory is from sixth grade,” Richards said. “I found this book called ‘The Motley Fool’s Guide for Teens; How to Have More Money Than Your Parents Ever Dreamed.’ Instead of playing and going down the slide with all my friends I was sitting by the pool reading this book.”

Today, at age 27, Richards is wealthy and retired.

“I quit my job and retired,” Richards said. “I now live on $10,000 per month on passive income. I’m also a real estate investor with over 35 rental units, a professional speaker and a best-selling author of two books.”

Richards’ two best-selling books are “Passive Income: Aggressive Retirement” and “Money Honey: A Simple 7-Step Guide for Getting Your Financial $hit Together.”

If you are wondering how Richards was able to retire at the young age of 27 with enough money to live the life of her dreams, she said it is not that difficult, but it does take some effort.

“It’s possible with something called passive income,” she said.

You can earn passive income in your sleep. The sooner you begin, the more passive income you can acquire.

“Passive income is money that is earned with little or no ongoing work,” Richards said. “That means you’re not trading your time for your money anymore.”

Richards’ book “Passive Income: Aggressive Retirement” lists 28 different streams of passive income.

“Passive income sort of separates time and money, so you’re making money without putting the time in,” Richards said.

Richards said she believes Mint.com is a great place to start saving for your dreams, and it’s free.

“Mint will pull all of your transactions into this one centralized location so that makes it really easy to see where your money is going,” she said. “So, once you see where your money is going, it will be very obvious where to cut back.”

Before you begin your passive income quest, it is important to first take care of your debt.

“If you have credit card debt, put that extra money toward paying off that credit card debt as quickly as you can,” Richards said. “There’s no point in investing your money into the stock market to make 8 percent when you’re losing 20 percent over here on a credit card.”

Decreasing your spending and increasing your income is a good beginning.

“Anything that I want to buy, I will wait at least 24 hours to go through with it and buy it, and that really helps me eliminate the needs from the wants,” Richards said.

Richards said she also believes it is easier to resist temptation if you unsubscribe from store emails that offer items to buy.

“I would see an email from Ann Taylor Loft for 50 percent off, and I would go on and buy things I didn’t need,” she said. “Unsubscribe from all of these.”

Once your finances are under control, aggressively pursue how you can passively make your income.

“The cool thing about passive income is that it is so attainable,” Richards said. “Anybody can create it, no matter their age or their income.”

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