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April Transparency: Income, Expenses, & Future Plans

in MvD Updates, People & Products, Travel

Each month, as part of an ongoing transparency project, I share the income, expenses, and master plans of my pursuit to earn a living online. This includes many of the expenses related to our RV lifestyle.

Personal finance should not be a taboo subject in our society. The more light we can shed – and the more examples we can share – the better off we are!

April’s Business Income/Expenses…

Sell Your Crap income:  $1,261.64

You Vs. Debt income:  $5,107.60

Additional Income:  $1,368.89

Direct Expenses:  -$6,734.12

  • YvD Launch Consulting:  -$4000.00
  • WDS Conference Tickets: -$610.84
  • YvD Graphics: -$501.25
  • Affiliate Payments:  -$393.77
  • Food/Meals: -$289.31
  • Cell Phone (final): -$175.32
  • Website tech work: -$130.00
  • YvD Transcriptions: -$112.15
  • AppSumo Deal: -$99.00
  • Premium Web Cart: -$79.97
  • Optimizely: -$79.00
  • Aweber:  -$49.00
  • Virgin Mobile: -$40.00
  • Rebel Strength Guide: -$39.00
  • Cloud Blogging Guide: -$37.00
  • Wufoo: -$29.95
  • Travel Hacking Cartel: -$25.00
  • MailChimp:  -$15.00
  • E-junkie:  -$10.00
  • DropBox:  -$9.99
  • Domain Name: -$8.57

Net (Income – Expenses):  $1,004.01

Over the last 13 months, this brings the average net to: ~$5500/month.

Want to know even more details? My friend Corbett Barr (from ThinkTraffic.net fame) and I will be hosting a live Q&A this coming Wednesday on “Building Momentum for Your Online Business”. We’ll leave no questions unanswered, but there are only 100 spots on the webinar. Here’s the link to save your spot if interested.

As you can see, we successfully launched the very first private “You Vs. Debt” course behind-the-scenes last month. We’re in the middle of the course now, tweaking and testing the content, gathering feedback, and helping people radically change their financial approach.

It’s thrilling to see the first group of people take the course, as I’ve never before approached my courses/eBooks in this manner. I can already see the impact it will have on the eventual public release (likely late next month).

Even still, there is a lot left to do – the grunt work is far from over as far as the course is concerned!

You may also notice a $4,000 payment to a team member. Keep in mind this actually represents several months of hard work – and is an investment in a piece of my team that I want to play a core role for years to come. :-)

As always, I’ll answer any questions below!

RV Tour Updates… Keep Rollin’ Rollin’ Rollin’…

April saw us visiting and hosting meetups in the cities of Phoenix, San Diego, and L.A.

The Phoenix meetup was especially fun – as we had a BBQ out at a local park – and 30-35 people, including several families with kids were able to swing by. This was a welcome unique-twist to our normal gatherings!

In San Diego, I was interviewed and featured in the San Diego Union-Tribune (which was fun). Our meetup had a smaller, but very mighty turnout – featuring what ended up being mostly other entrepreneurs and bloggers!

We also had a great time while staying with friends in Hollywood, Los Angeles. We had a strong showing of personal finance industry folk and bloggers turn out and share some great tamales and stories at the meetup.

Let me pause here to share that at each step of the way our sponsor, Adaptu.com swooped in and bought free food for everyone – at each meetup.

To be clear, this isn’t something they are supposed to do. Nor is this something I’m required to talk about here. I’m just extremely fortunate to have found and created a really great relationship with the team over there.

They’ve been a fantastic company to work with – and offer a valuable service that is completely free. Thanks again to Adaptu for help making this tour a great experience for us so far! :-)

Next stop: SAN FRANCISCO!

May brings us into San Francisco (where I’m writing this as of now), for the first couple of weeks.

In mid-May, we’ll spend a week driving through northern California and southern Oregon. We hear these areas are especially beautiful for driving.

Ultimately, we’ll pull into Portland, Oregon toward the end of the month – and are looking forward to a couple weeks with good friends and allies before the World Domination Summit in early June.

RV Expenses/Lifestyle Cost…

Speaking of the tour, here’s a glimpse at the expenses related to our RV lifestyle (for April).

Gas: $605.03 (-58%)

Whoo-hoo, down over half! While gas prices have continued to go up, up, up… we’ve driven less, less, less.

Essentially, we drove only two legs: from Phoenix to San Diego and from San Diego to L.A.

Campground Fees: $489.50 (-13%)

We stayed the far majority of the time at campgrounds this time, but did benefit a small amount from having cheaper parking with friends in the Los Angeles area at the end of the month.

As it seems moving forward, $500 appears to be a realistic and comfortable budget for us. We *could* do it on much smaller incomes, but we also could easily spend more as frequently as we are moving.

Hotel/Hostel/Lodging: $0 (0%)

Once again, we’ve avoided any extra cost from lodging outside the RV – making two months in a row now.

This isn’t much of a feat, but early on we had several circumstances that forced us into more expensive lodging.

Propane: $35.06 (+100%)

We only had to fill our propane tank once in April (after not filling it at all in March).

It appears as long as we stay out of cold weather, propane won’t add any significant pain to our budget. It’s actually fairly affordable.

Tolls/Parking: $0 (-100%)

April didn’t see any toll roads, parking garages, or miscellaneous fees that we encountered on the road.

We did get stopped along the Mexican/U.S. Border – but all they wanted to know was if I was a U.S. Citizen. Check.

Repairs: $ 55.25 (-40%)

As with last month, we only had one very minor problem with the RV or Jeep this month.

It came to our attention that we had the wrong size of “hitch ball” that we were towing the Jeep with. While it had still towed several thousand miles, it was starting to warp a bit – and wasn’t the most safe option.

In addition, the wiring jack that connects the RV lights to the Jeep lights when we were towing was shorted out (this is important so the brake lights and such work on the back of the Jeep when towing).

I’m proud to report, I fixed both problems myself with a trip to AutoZone. Now, these are the most simple problems in the world for anyone who works on… well, anything. But for me, splicing the wires and installing the proper trailer hitch are HUGE accomplishments!

I’m very happy with our expenses this month. We saw reductions in nearly every category. We live a VERY comfortable RV lifestyle (and a fairly mobile one) and our expenses are becoming much more controllable.

Hoping to keep it up!

*****

As always, I’m willing to tackle any questions you may have in the comments below.

I’m excited to have you along for the ride – and to have a community where I can share so openly.

Xoxoxo,

-Baker

{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

Financial Samurai May 9, 2011 at 10:10 AM

Welcome to San Francisco! It seems as our San Francisco winter is upon us now!

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Dave Doolin May 9, 2011 at 6:26 PM

I know! I came in from East Bay on Saturday. Stepping up from BART into the Market Street wind tunnel, I was ticked I didn’t bring another layer. Just about got blasted back into the tunnel.

Fog season, evidently, has arrived.

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Phil Campbell May 9, 2011 at 10:40 AM

i’m reading this with great interested because i’m a bit of a settled nomad right now with my projects taking off as well. what is really cool is the breakdown in expenses so thanks for doing that. subscribed! :)

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David May 9, 2011 at 10:43 AM

These reports are awesome, so transparent about everything you guys do which I think has been a huge factor in your success. Keep it up!

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Deacon Bradley May 9, 2011 at 10:48 AM

Awesome that you share this stuff Adam! It’s cool to get a peak behind the curtain at pro-blogging life.

FYI, may want to pass along to your sponsor Adaptu that “adaptu.com” doesn’t redirect to “www.adaptu.com,” and that’s the only one that works!

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Jenna, Adaptu Community Manager May 10, 2011 at 1:22 PM

Hey @Deacon Bradley! Thanks for reporting this error, our technical team is looking into fixing it.

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Justin Hamlin May 9, 2011 at 3:44 PM

Enjoy northern CA and if you can make it through the Sacramento area and up to Lake Tahoe, you won’t regret it, it’s gorgeous.

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Gillian @OneGiantStep May 9, 2011 at 4:53 PM

Thanks again for the transparency Adam. I, too, believe that personal finance should not be taboo…we can all learn from each other!

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radman May 9, 2011 at 6:06 PM

Great to see the list again – very informative. Also liked seeing the RV costs knowing that it is one of the “to do’s” on my list. Thanks.

Radman

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Nina May 9, 2011 at 8:02 PM

Hi Baker,
Thank you for sharing your income and expences! I find it very insightful to see how much you can earn for example with affiliate marketing or with your own course. I also like that you are willing to share how much and on what you spend money. From that it is clear that you earn a lot because you seem to invest a lot in developing your product e.g. coaching and yourself e.g. conferences.

THX again for being so open!
Nina

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Dwight @ financiallyeliteblog.com May 9, 2011 at 9:12 PM

Nice transparency Baker, good to see your YVD product on the market as i’m sure you’ll do well with it.

Dwight Anthony
Financially Elite Blog dot Com

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Alex Humphrey May 9, 2011 at 10:27 PM

Another awesome month, Baker! Congrats on everything that you do! It is so amazing to see you living out your dream.

The thing I am learning the most about your expenses the last few months is to sacrifice now to make more later. The last few months have seen you taking an income hit because you have spent so much money on You vs. Debt. However, this is awesome because you know that all this work will pay off 100 fold in the near future.

Congrats, friend. It is amazing to see you go!

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Catie May 10, 2011 at 11:20 AM

health insurance? yes? no? maybe? :) thanks

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Jeffrey Mitchell May 10, 2011 at 1:21 PM

It is exciting to see the launch of “You vs. Debt”…financial education is an epidemic right now and you are fighting on the front lines.

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Russ Reynolds May 10, 2011 at 4:54 PM

Hey Adam…thanks for all of the transparency. I probably missed it but how do you get connected to wifi on the road for work purposes?

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Clay Andrews May 11, 2011 at 3:20 PM

Hi Baker,

Great update. Looks like you’ve been busy.

What did you think of Phoneix? That place is way too hot for me. Be grateful you didn’t meet up in a park down there during July (!)

I’m looking forward to the webinar with you and Corrbet :)

I hope to meet you when you swing through PDX.

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Tyson May 11, 2011 at 7:26 PM

Just found this site and it’s awesome! Great stuff here. Best of luck to you and hope to see you around the Seattle area maybe?

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Nico May 18, 2011 at 9:09 AM

Wow, you are really aware of your expenses! And of your savings, this is something everybody should learn to do, for making a better life for themselves.

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Coupon Frugality May 19, 2011 at 11:31 AM

Love the blog. I am in the process of making the transition to exactly what you are doing. Only my kids are older and will be out of the house soon. I have 5 years to meet my goals. I will be following your blog for sure !!

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Bernard McBride June 3, 2011 at 2:02 AM

Dear Folks,

Hi. I read about you on Yahoo, and was especially intrigued by your RV lifestyle. I am 62, recently retired and thinking about buying an RV or motor home. Any tips or insights you could pass along would be welcome, e.g., type and cost of the vehicle, new or used, RV parks, websites, etc.

Thank you, and good luck on life’s journey.

Bernard McBride

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Jordan Sterling June 3, 2011 at 4:33 AM

I’m loving the blog! I caught wind of you guys via yahoo and I’m inspired. I have an idea that I hope you’d consider. If you have time in your daily life, you should look into creating an iPhone application that keeps individuals accountable in their pursuit of debt reduction/freedom. I have been using the website: http://www.powerpay.org to help me with my finances but I’m starting to realize that its very difficult without having anyone to be accountable too. It’s a matter of breaking down, selling “my crap” and working hard to cut my expences. keep it up!

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Delone June 7, 2011 at 3:38 PM

Wow, love your blog and will spend time reading all of it. Very helpful too, I can’t seem to get much traffic on my blog, but I will use your suggestions for getting more traffic.

Thanks!!

Delone @ Coltcreek.com

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Harriet Jakowich July 3, 2011 at 4:11 AM

I found you when you were on yahoo, and did an interview with the Dennings. Before we bought our mobile home we talked about buying an RV to live in full time, with at the time 9 month old twins, 2 dogs, and 2 cats. We live in Alaska and we didn’t find parks that were open year round so we moved on. Now that we have been in Alaska for 3 years, we are ready to move on. Statistically, I live in an area around 3 years, 4 years max in Denver, Colorado. Now that we have hit the 3 year mark we are ready, unfortunately we are stuck another 2 years due to first time home owner credit, and a grant that we got repairs done on the house. It will take us that amount of time to pay off most of our debt excluding our student loans.

Once I found you and the Dennings, I knew this is it. My husband works nights and I told him immediately what I found. We are now working on living to pay bills, and live for what we want and that is travel. We talked about moving to Europe (dual citizen American, and Dutch), but we are also sick of the cold. The Caribbean was on the list as I was born in raised in the Netherlands Antilles (St. Maarten and Saba). The biggest thing is how to fund our dreams. So my question to you is, how do you fund your travels? I was watching some Adaptu videos on youtube, and noticed it was free, so not sure if you make money elsewhere. I am really interest as we want to be nomads.

Thanks
Harriet

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Jenna, Adaptu Community Manager July 5, 2011 at 12:53 PM

Glad you like our videos @Harriet Jakowich! Hope you come check out our site soon. Let me know if you have any questions / comments: jenna@adaptu.com – I’d love to answer them.

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Rob R July 8, 2011 at 1:06 PM

Sorry I missed you in the L.A. area (I just discovered your blog). As you head north you may want to pick up a small electric space heater. A lot of the campgrounds have electric hookups that you can use to heat the RV versus draining your propane.

As far as camping goes, try to stop and spend a day in Jedediah Smith Redwood State Park if you are in the area. The Redwoods are gorgeous.

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Karl - Stepping Into Wonder July 17, 2011 at 1:15 PM

I really appreciate the transparency, as a new blogger, it’s great to see a breakdown of you are able to make a living from your website.

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jeff ehrlich October 8, 2011 at 7:06 AM

Adam,
Are you going to update your income reporting? Looks like you stopped with April – is the income continuing to increase??

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Sofia Michaels October 15, 2011 at 9:14 AM

Adam,

Your updates are so interesting. I wonder how you’ve done in the five months since May. Do you have a goal to be at zero debt by the time your daughter enters school so you can put down roots or will you stay on the road?

Thanks for your very open look into your adventure.

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