Home > Author Archives: Kim Parr

Author Archives: Kim Parr

Kim Parr is a private practice optometrist, freelance writer, and personal financial blogger. You can follow her journey to 20/20 financial vision at Eyes on the Dollar.

The FourPlex Is Rented!

four plex is finished

For the first time since buying last December, the fourplex is rented! It was lots of work and stress, but what a nice feeling to have that final lease signed. The property has two buildings, each with two apartments. One of the buildings needed a some renovation with new flooring, electrical, paint, and light fixtures upstairs and a complete remodel with new construction downstairs. After two and a half months of work, we now have four, two bedroom apartments. Rental Income We had hoped to get $3050 in rent between all four units, and we’re pretty close at $2975 per month. We have one holdover tenant who was there before we bought the place, and we should be able to raise the rent $100 or so per month once he moves out. Our other rental house is currently leased for $780/month. The total of our rental expenses are around $2000 a month, so that means $1755 in profit. We also have our commercial rental that barely breaks even every month, but it will be paid off in four and a half years and should net another $3000 a month when that happens. Of course, we’re going to have bad months ...

Read More »

South Africa and the Evolving Online Loan Industry

applying for an online loan

South Africa may not be as digitally advanced as some other more digitally developed countries but as they become more and more tech savvy an increase in possibilities are opening up to them. This is largely thanks to South Africa’s increased adoption of smartphones and tablets. The country’s financial comparison search engines may not be as sophisticated as that of the USA and UK but the payday loans market continues to grow and migrate online as more and more fintech companies enter into the ZA market place thanks to this increased digital user adoption. Applying For Loans Online The payday loan market is undoubtedly an industry that has come under increased scutiny  of late but, needless to say, worldwide it’s worth R400 billion and becoming increasingly accessible as companies now offer a complete online solution to applying for a loan from start to finish. The service is instant and loans are generally offered of between R100 and R2500 and made available within hours. The more sophisticated sites offer complete transparency with sites like Wonga stating their terms and offering slider tools to enable the user to calculate how much they want to borrow and the interest rates that the borrower ...

Read More »

Is It Better To Invest or Be Debt Free?

paying off debt quickly

A big reason many people put off investing is debt. It doesn’t really make sense to ramp up investments while paying 21 percent interest to credit card companies, but what about low interest debt? Obviously the answer depends on many variables including income, how much debt you owe, and if you are investing for short or long term goals. We currently have lots of mortgage debt, mostly from investment properties, that we’d like to see paid off quickly. However, we don’t want to miss out on investment gains and compound interest either. Is is better to invest or be debt free? Completely Debt Free In Six Years! Assuming we maintain our current level of income and expenses, if we were to stop investing in our 401k’s, IRA’s, and taxable brokerage accounts and put all the money toward paying down mortgage debt, our primary home could be paid off in about three years. The commercial building we own will be paid off in a little over four years. At that point, we could throw everything toward the other rental house and four plex, paying those off in another two or three years. If we went for that strategy, we would own ...

Read More »

How Do You Tell Your Kid a Minimum Wage Job Is a Bad Idea?

struggles of minimum wage jobs

We all know that people who work minimum wage almost always get the shaft. Either from low income, no sick days, or companies sending jobs overseas because someone in Laos will work for 10 cents an hour, employees who work in low wage jobs face more struggles than those with higher earning potential. As my daughter grows and gets more curious about the word, I am finding myself having to answer a harder and broader range of questions.  Recently, I’ve had to explain what the tampon machine in the public restroom was for, and I’ve had to offer comments on many a tattoo we’ve unfortunately seen in the swimming pool locker room. However, I was a bit stumped last week when she asked me if being a cashier at the grocery store was a good job. How do you tell your kid a minimum wage job is a bad idea? Blue Collar Roots My first knee jerk reaction when she asked about the cashier job was to say “NOOOOOO Way!” but am I being a snob? My Mom worked as a grocery store cashier for years when I was a kid. I know it caused her all sorts of back ...

Read More »

5 Steps To Save On Car Insurance

ways to save money on car insurance

Despite the perception that car insurance is just another financial burden, like taxes or utilities, you’ll soon realize why it’s such an important investment. Just like when you hedge in the investment world to protect against the risk of a loss on the financial market, car insurance is the same—it’s transferring the risk of a loss to a third party, so you can drive without worrying about the financial consequences of a crash. However, just like the financial market, you have to do your due diligence in finding the right coverage for the best rate. Different insurance companies have different risk pools and financial structures, so rates often vary by thousands of dollars. There are a few different ways to make sure you’re fully protected, for the best price. Shop for the Best Rate By far the most important step in saving on car insurance is shopping around for the best rate. As mentioned above, different insurance companies’ prices differ by hundreds, even thousands of dollars, for what seems like no reason at all. However, it comes down to the different risk pools each company has on its books. For example, if one company has experienced more claims in the ...

Read More »