Monday, April 13, 2009

Hawaii here we come...

Yay! Andy won his company trip again this year and so we are going to Maui the last week of April - yay! I love Verizon! I have never been to Hawaii, so I am pretty stoked. Let us know if you have any suggestions on things to do there :-).

We are really going to enjoy it as now that Andy is a sales manager it is much harder to make the trips so we might not go on another one for a while. The top 35 salespeople go, but only the top 5 sales managers go... So I figure we'd better enjoy this one!

I also just finished up my contract this past Friday. I am really grateful to Jay for providing me the opportunity, but I am officially going to start doing the realtor thing full time now. I just need to take the test!

The rentals don't take a ton of time overall, but in the beginning they take a ton. Sometimes it feels like all Andy and I do is work and then do rentals. So we figure my focusing on real estate is a good thing and hopefully will bring more balance to our lives. I am definitely looking forward to a bit more balance!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Busy year so far

I am a tad bit embarrassed to have been such a lousy blogger after we sent out Christmas letters advertising our new blog - oh well! It has just been hectic and so blogging had fallen to the backburner. A lot has been going on with us, though!

We actually found out we were pregnant on Jan 2 of this year and as would be expected were overjoyed! But that said, I didn't want to blog about it in case something went wrong, which it did...

It actually was kinda a nightmare as I went in at 7 weeks and they told me something *might* be wrong and it took weeks to figure out something really was wrong (and I am not much for patience) and then weeks more to have it finally resolve. The lesson for me there, was to not go in until 9 or 10 weeks when basically they know for sure whether things are good or bad. We also, won't be telling as many people next time we are pregnant. :-)

In any case, of course we were disappointed, but we are actually pretty happy that we got pregnant relatively easily so that we know we shouldn't have a problem conceiving in the future. It was kinda lame in that it put a damper in my New Year's resolution to get in shape and so I was delayed by 2 months in getting on that!

I also started my 3 month contract and so working obviously means I have less time to goof off! And it means we have extra money which is nice. We are paying off everything we can - like a lot of people. Soon we should just have our primary mortgages on our houses and rentals and that's a relief. We are trying to prep for when we will only have one regular salary to rely on. It is hard to adjust when you are used to two people's salaries as I am sure many of you can relate. :-)

Luckily, Andy's job seems fairly secure. I love Verizon. Andy is such a testament to the value of sticking with a company. I jumped around quite a bit in my career to get the bigger salary, title, or whatever - but somehow Andy has managed to do all that while staying at the same place.

We also bought an 8-plex adding to our rental portfolio. We actually went in 50/50 with my brother and have started a business together where we will buy properties like this in the future. It is actually quite a good marriage of skills. First, it lets us buy more because we only have to come up with 50% of the down payment which at 20% of the purchase price can be quite the hurdle. Second, we have a good marriage of skills. Jay is really handy and manages contractors really well. I am really good at doing the showings and managing the tenants. Andy is our guy who calls the utilities ;-). I am sure as most of you know, I love real estate! I feel like it is such a no-brainer way to build your wealth and savings. I am hoping that when the yet to be conceived kids go to college, that the rentals will pay for their tuition. We currently want to buy at least one property a year, but we don't have the expenses of children yet, so we'll see if we can manage.

Finally, I have also been taking real estate classes and finally finished. So now I just need to take the state licensing exam, find a broker and then I will be a real estate agent! I figure since we are really doing this real estate thing, at least we shouldn't have to pay the realtor fees. Also, I think it will be a good line of work for me to continue when we do have children so we don't completely cut off my salary :-). So, if you know anyone who needs a realtor, send them my way.

So you see, we have been busy! I promise we'll blog more.