Happy Holidays! I hope you had a great Christmas with family and friends. This year, we had a low key holiday and just stayed home. I was planning to drive down to visit my brothers in California, but Mrs. RB40 didn’t want to go. She has been out of town for work a bit too often this year so she wanted to stay home. Actually, that worked out perfectly. I’m a bit sick and I wouldn’t have been able to drive 11 hours to California. Besides, Portland received a light dusting of snow, just enough to make the sidewalks icy. Anyway, we stayed home and had a relaxing holiday instead. We all had a good time opening presents and playing with our new toys. And today (Tuesday), we’ll go see The Last Jedi together. It should be a lot of fun.
Best of Retire by 40
2017 was a pretty good year for me here at Retire by 40. We had about 1.5 million page views this year which is about the same as 2016. It would have been better if traffic grew, but that’s pretty tough now at this stage. I’ve been blogging since 2010 and I’ll probably need to make a big change to increase traffic significantly. Anyway, I think 1.5 million page views isn’t too bad. That’s a medium size blog, right?
On the bright side, my online income just about doubled from last year. I added some new affiliate partners this year and they worked out very well. I hope next year will be even better, but you never know. My experience is that an affiliate partner usually works well for a year or two and then the income declines over time. So I need to find new affiliate partners that perform better. See, this part time blogging gig isn’t that easy.
For 2017, I published 97 articles. That’s about 2 every week. This pace works really well for me right now. In previous years, I posted 3 times per week. That pace was good when I was newer, but it’s a bit too grueling now. It gets more difficult to come up with a new topic because I wrote almost 1,200 articles since 2010. There is only so much you can write about early retirement.
Anyway, I’m going to take it easy this week and enjoy the holidays with the family. So here are best posts from Retire by 40 in 2017. If you missed it the first time, now is the chance to catch up before we move on to 2018. Enjoy the holidays!
How to Start Blogging and Why You Should – This is my guide on how to start blogging. I’ve gotten good feedback on this post and it helped many people get started. However, I need to update this post and add a stern warning about how blogging can take up a lot of time. Non bloggers don’t know how time intensive it can be. I also need to write a follow up post on how to gain readers. It can be discouraging if you don’t get many comments on your blog posts.
How We’re Generating Passive Income in 2017 – This post was the most popular post this year, but I cheated a bit. I update the post every month and repost it. It probably got a bit repetitive for regular readers. For 2018, I plan to do an update every quarter instead.
How Serious Are You About Early Retirement? Take my pop quiz and see how serious you are about early retirement. Check it out if you missed it the first time. This one was fun.
Retiring at 65 is a Terrible Idea – Most workers aim to retire around 65, but I think it’s a terrible idea. My mom is 69 and she doesn’t function well anymore. YMMV, but I’m really glad I retired way before 65. I need to enjoy my life while I’m still physically and mentally healthy.
How to Start Investing in Dividend Stocks – This one is helpful for new investors. It seems the “how to” articles are pretty popular. I probably should write more of these.
Why I Prefer DIY Retirement Planning – See why DIY retirement planning is a better fit for some people. A financial advisor can be helpful for many people, but not everyone.
Read This Before Buying Your First Home! – Did you know that Arnold Schwarzenegger was a millionaire before he became an action movie star? Read how a penniless immigrant became a millionaire.
Are You Worth More Than You Earned? – Here is a saying that everyone should know by now, “It’s not how much you make, it’s how much you keep.” See if we’re worth more than we earned through the years. This is actually really difficult. Only 16% of our readers earned this bragging right.
How Will You Invest with Low Stock Market Return? I can’t believe how well the stock market did in 2017. It’s pretty amazing. However, the stock market won’t continue to rise forever. We’ll see a downturn at some point so all of us should figure this out before it hits.
My Best Investing Advice for Recent College Grads – The best time to start investing is when you’re young. See my advice to one young reader. The comments also had a ton of great advice.
My Secret to a Happy Early Retirement – Let’s face it, early retirement isn’t for everyone. However, if you’re making a go at it, check out my secret. I love early retirement and it keeps getting better.
My annual early retirement update – It’s been over 5 years since I left my engineering career and life is great. Early retirement is maturing like fine wine for me. It’s pretty amazing it’s been that long already. It sure didn’t feel like 5 years.
Am I Too Cheap for Doing Yard Work? – This is my best gripe post in 2017. We were forced to spend $360 for leaf blowing in our small communal backyard. It’s frigging ridiculous. I thought this post was pretty funny, check it out.
Alright, that’s it for 2017. I’ll be back in 2018 with more posts about early retirement, financial independence, passive income, goals, being a stay-at-home-dad, blogging, and more. Thank you for reading. I really appreciate every single one of you.
Happy New Year and may 2018 be as good as 2017 for all of us! Best wishes to everyone.
For 2018, Joe plans to diversify his passive income by investing in US heartland real estate through RealtyShares. He has 3 rental units in Portland and he believes the local market is getting overpriced.
Joe highly recommends Personal Capital for DIY investors. He logs on to Personal Capital almost daily to check his cash flow and net worth. They have many useful tools that will help every investor analyze their portfolio and plan for retirement.
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