The 4 Most Valuable Stamps from Brazil

Brazil holds a special place in the hearts and minds of stamp aficionados, as their first issue of stamps ranks fourth in the chronological order of the issue of adhesive postage stamps.

Although the New York Dispatch and the Fours and Sixes of Zurich came just after the Penny Black, despite the fact that the bull’s eye stamp came after these issues from a date perspective, stamp experts often consider the first stamp of Brazil to rank second only to the British iconic stamp.

The main reason for this is that the original order to create stamps came on November 30th 1840, but as the Brazilian custom authorities seized the engraving machine and instead used it in the service of the mint, this means that conceptually, the original bull’s eye stamp ranks only second to the Penny Black.

Here is a look at some of the rarest stamps from the country that featured so early in the development of a postage stamp system.

2000_2005_8Bull’s Eye

The Brazilian bull’s eye issue was first released in various denominations on the 1st August 1843.

Available in 30, 60 and 90 reis values, these stamps were issued just three years after the famous Penny Black, and are particularly important as they were the nation’s first stamps.

The Bull’s Eye stamp was also only the second stamp ever issued that was valid throughout the whole of the country rather than being restricted to a specific region. The historical aspect of these stamps has helped to add to their value and collectors are also attracted to the unusual design, which was designed to resemble a pair of bull’s eyes.

A sheet of 60 Bull’s Eyes stamps was auctioned back in 2013 for a figure of $623,000 and are expected to hold their value, due to the fact that first issues of any country are always going to be iconic.

Snake’s Eyes

Following on from the original bull’s eyes issue, the next stamp to appear back in 1844 was a smaller rectangular design which featured italic or inclined numerals of value which translates as the Inclinados or snake eyes.

Goat’s Eyes

In 1850, some smaller versions of the original bull’s eyes appeared. The stamps with the default black ink were referred to as the goat’s eyes and some were printed in blue, and these versions with such a distinguishing colour, were referred to as snake’s eyes.

All of these stamps in their various distinctive guises are commonly referred to as the bull’s eyes. There were in fact more than three million bull’s eyes stamps issued, including the aforementioned snake’s eyes and goat’s eyes, so despite the fact that they are noted for their rarity, they hold definite value in the eyes of philatelists, who are prepared to pay large sums of money to add them to their collection.

The Parahyba Provisional

Some stamps have stories attached to them that divide opinion and there is certainly one rare Brazilian stamp that manages to do that, the Parahyba Provisional.

The stamp known as the Parahyba Provisional is also referred to as 5 of Parahyba and also the Parahyba Overprint, so you can take your choice according to who is talking about a stamp that is known to have thirteen mentioned copies and two subsequently discovered later.

On 16th May 1930, a series of three stamps were issued for use on mail that was to be carried on the first recorded commercial flight of LZ 127, otherwise known as the infamous Graf Zeppelin.

The Zeppelin set off from Brazil and headed to Europe in 1930. Apparently just thirteen stamps out of the five thousand stamps on board and used for postage items, were overprinted with a surcharge. The dispute between certain philatelists centers around the official recognition of these stamps and the fact that the stamp was only listed seven years after its issuance.

There are therefore some doubts about the authenticity and history of the stamp, which often leads to lively debate in stamp-collecting circles and probably doesn’t harm future values either.

Why Gold Isn’t Just for Hobbyists

If you have already invested some of your portfolio in gold, your blood may well have run cold by the time you had put down a book written by Dr. Jeremy Seigel called ”Stocks for the Long Run”.

In this book, the author, who is a renowned economics professor, sought to compare the long term investment performance of various assets. Using a hypothetical $1 investment in a variety of different asset classes, such as stocks, T-bills and gold, he sought to look how each investment fared from the starting date of 1802 and using 2006 as the end date.

Stocks came out way ahead in this hypothetical comparison scenario, turning $1 into $755,163, whereas bonds could only muster a return of $1,083 and T-bills could managed just $301. The big surprise was just how badly gold fared, managing a return of just $1.95 in the vast time period.

A number of financial commentators have picked up on this miserable performance and have been quick to hail gold as the worst investment in history.

Its time has passed

One observer who was commenting on this alarming study, was prompted to take the view that gold is a legacy investment and its time in the sun has well and truly passed.

The problem as we all know with statistics, is that you often end up with a confirmation bias, where you seek to show how good or bad something is, and then set out to find the right parameters and conditions in order to produce a statistical analysis that appears to back up your theory.

The question is, has gold really lost its shine and does it really warrant the suggestion that it is purely for the hobbyists and not an investment that serious investors should entertain in any form?

Answering the criticism

While there is no hidden agenda here to stick up for gold as an investment in general, it would only be fair that the precious metal got a fair hearing and we therefore need to take a look at the observations and accusations, so that they can be put into proper context.

The most obvious point to make about the research, is that there is not one investor who put their dollar down back in 1802 and was anywhere near to being around to collect on their investment by the time 2006 came around.

You could have bought and sold gold at various points throughout that 200-year window and made a handsome profit. You could also have got your timing wrong as well, and ended up nursing a loss too.

The fundamental point is that by choosing the sort of timeframe that is irrelevant to anyone,as none of us live that long, you are not only creating a statistical bias that highlights how bad an asset class is, you are also highlighting the sort of return from stocks that you may also have never come close to achieving, using a different set of dates.

Stocks and bonds over 200 years

If you are keen to see how stocks have performed in comparison to bonds over a hypothetical 200-year period, you can play with the figures to produce an interesting set of numbers.

Based on figures published by joshuakennon.com,  stocks for example, managed a highest real return (inflation-adjusted) of 66.6% over the last 200 years, whereas their lowest real return during that period was -36.6%. Bonds fared worse in comparison to stocks, managing a highest real return of 35.1% and a low of -21.9%.

The point to take on board of course is that if you were at the point where your stocks had dived to a near 40% loss scenario at some point, you probably would not have been too hasty to write off gold at that point.

You can find peaks and troughs for every asset class and then find a time period that highlights how great or bad it is, depending on your point of view and maybe even your bias towards one asset class over another.

You can certainly find statistics to support a theory that gold offers investors a raw deal, but no one is suggesting that you should invest your entire portfolio in gold, in preference to stocks and bonds, or any other asset class for that matter.

To suggest that gold is just for hobbyists or that you should invest only in stocks or bonds, is missing the point about investment strategies and the opportunities available to you these days. A balanced portfolio which produces a positive return overall, will often have fingers in a whole different range of pies, from stocks, bonds, various alternative investments, and of course an exposure to gold, either directly via a physical investment, or via something like a gold ETF.

There is no question that gold is still considered a play by a number of savvy investors, who understand that timing and taking a long term view can help you to ride out any short term price variances. You may well be able to find stocks that outperform gold over a certain period, but you could also find examples of how gold has provided a solid return in times of stock market uncertainty in particular.

There are many who will happily disregard this research by Dr. Jeremy Siegel as a statistical anomaly, especially as there would have been plenty of opportunities to invest in gold within that 200-year period, where the return you achieved would have looked a whole lot better.

How to Invest in Bitcoin

Sometimes when you decide you’re going to make investments you need to get creative. You’ve got to make sure you have your fingers in a lot of different pies. Now, sometimes you need to think outside the box. There are so many different opportunities that allow you to make sensible investments these days. You have to remember that a lot of the markets are quite saturated, and you need to do what you can to give yourself the best possible opportunities.

That’s why you need to consider alternative forms of investment. Everyone invests in things like stocks, shares and precious metals. So, you have to think about the best possible way of making a unique and original investment. So, you need to think about investing in things like wine, art, and motion pictures. These days, you could even go one further, and invest in Bitcoin. But, like with anything you invest in, you need to understand where your money is going before you make any investments.

So, what is Bitcoin? Well, simply put, Bitcoin is a form of digital currency that can be used to pay for items, products and services. The major benefit of Bitcoin is that the currency is produced and held digitally, and nobody controls it. You can understand the appeal of Bitcoin from an investment viewpoint. There is no bank controlling and dictating the currency, and you can buy things so much more easily. So, you can understand what the benefits are of investing in Bitcoin. And now you have to ask yourself how you can invest in this exciting opportunity. Here are a few of the best ways of getting your Bitcoin investment up and running.

Buy off Others

The Bitcoin community is huge, and there are many users all across the world. So, one of the simplest things for you to do would be to buy off other users. You can keep in communication with one another and decide in the volume of Bitcoin you would like to purchase. Purchases can be made using regular cash, credit card or PayPal. Of course, you need to make sure you are sensible, and that you do your research before doing this. You have to be certain that the person you are buying from is trustworthy. You are committing money to this investment so you need to make sure you protect your assets as much as you can. Only deal with reputable users and see if you can get referrals before trading with any individuals.

Mine Them

The process of how Bitcoin transactions and developments work and are tracked is highly complex. Obviously, it is very different to how banks and other financial establishments are run. And, another way you can invest in Bitcoin is via the mining process. In order to do this you will have to make sure you own a Bitcoin wallet which you can purchase online. You will then be able to join a pool and start mining for coins. This is simply a verification of the Bitcoin transactions that have taken place. You might need to buy some hardware to enable to you to start mining for coins. It’s very much a lottery, and you will need to put in a lot of work and effort to get success.

Use Credit Cards

Now, you are able to buy Bitcoin in the traditional way. This means you can come up with transactions that will allow you to buy Bitcoin using credit or debit cards. If you have the cash to do it, you might decide you’d like to buy a selection of Bitcoin. It’s important to try to get in there as soon as you can before the demand increases, and they become more expensive. Try to buy as many as you feel you can afford and keep them in your Bitcoin wallet for safe keeping. Bitcoin investment is still a relatively new thing, so it’s best to get in there now and take advantage before it becomes big.

Now, as a beginner, this all might be quite a bit of information to take in. So, what you need to do before investing is make sure you’re happy with what you’re doing. That means going over the process and understanding just how exactly the whole Bitcoin thing works. The best way to do this is to make sure you head online and do your research about the world of Bitcoin. There is so much information on there that you can use. And by reading up about things you’ll discover more about investing in Bitcoin and how you can benefit from it.

How to Invest in Solar Energy

Green and renewable energy is perhaps the most important industry of our time. We face an unprecedented challenge in the fight against climate change. However, the entire planet has now agreed to stem their emissions outputs, and make changes. That’s an enormous global shift away from fossil fuel dependence and traditional industry. The future is in renewables, and your investments should ideally shift to reflect that. In other words, now is the perfect time to think about solar and wind investments.

Yet, investors have been relatively slow to catch on. Discussions about renewable energy has grown to dominate government and business. That means the companies involved in clean energy will soon reap the rewards. It won’t be long before all companies are using solar power to provide energy for their operations. Apple, for example, now have a 100% solar powered office in Singapore. This is the future, and solar companies will come out on top. Any savvy investor can see this is a great opportunity to get on board early.

The only trouble is figuring out where to start. How exactly should we invest in this new revolution? Do we invest in the solar companies themselves? Or do we invest in solar funds provided by the government? Are there other options entirely? Today, we’ll show you how to invest in solar energy, in a variety of formats. If you’re keen to tap into this new market, keep reading.

Buy solar company stocks

One of the most obvious ways to invest in solar energy is by purchasing stocks in solar companies. It’s a simple formula. Governments and businesses are pledging to ‘go solar’ in the next ten years. Inevitably, companies that provide solar power systems should soar. Therefore, investing in them should make you a strong return. One of the biggest names in the business is Illumina. The stock price at Illumina has grown 1000% since its IPO in 2000. Currently, renewable energy stock prices have dipped down from their highs. However, high demand is likely to send them back up. These companies will ultimately replace the giant coal and oil companies, so it’s worth keeping your eye on them.

Solar income funds

Solar income funds means investing in government solar power schemes. The government has committed to produce 15% of all energy by renewable sources by 2020. And they need money to make that happen. With solar income funds, you’d invest this money to help hit this target. In return, you’ll get paid for the energy produced by the resulting solar panels. You are helping provide solar power, and reaping the reward for doing so.

Mini energy bonds

Mini energy bonds are offered by energy companies to help support their renewable division. For example, the biggest energy companies no longer just use coal power. They also produce energy with solar power and renewables. However, you might not necessarily want to invest in the entire company through general stocks. Instead, you want to simply invest in the solar power division. You can now do this with ‘mini energy bonds’. Most of the major energy companies now offer this, and you’ll get a share of profits in the solar division.

Renewable mutual funds

If you aren’t sure which is the best choice from the options above, you can hire a financial advisor. It’s their job to identify the very best opportunities, and invest for you. By using a renewable mutual fund, you’ll pool your money with lots of other investors. A financial advisor will then take that pooled money, and spread it across lots of renewable investments. They’ll find and locate the best possible returns from energy stocks, energy bonds, and government funds. They understand the market and the industry. They know how to manage the risk, and reap the rewards. They’ll spot new opportunities, and make your money grow, all while investing in solar energies.

Buying your own solar panels

Of course, if you’re looking for a more direct way to invest, you can buy solar panels for your home! That way, you are directly investing in the renewable energy companies. You’re also having a positive effect on the planet around you. Best of all, you can look at this like a money-saving investment. Although there’s an up-front cost, you’ll make the money back in utility bill savings. Once installed, you no longer have to pay an energy company. In fact, you may produce excess energy, and sell the rest back to the grid. That’s a fantastic investment.

Solar power and renewable energy is thriving. It’s time to invest in this growing industry.

What Supplies Do You Need to Start Stamp Collecting?

Stamp collecting is one of the oldest hobbies around, and this is something that you could get into yourself. It’s fun and fulfilling and gives you a hobby you can focus on. The great thing about stamp collecting is that it doesn’t have to be the most expensive of hobbies. And, as an excellent bonus, it’s something original and unique that isn’t a ubiquitous hobby across the country.

A lot of people collect stamps purely as a hobby and interest. But, these days there is room in the investment market. And you can be sure your hobby can be turned into a great investment opportunity. You’ll just have to make sure you’re sensible and that you know what you’re doing. But, we’re getting ahead of ourselves now. First off, we need to focus on what exactly is required to start stamp collecting.

You could take this up tomorrow, or even right now. But, you need to make sure you have everything you need. As with any hobby or interest, you need to be sure you have everything you need to be able to do it. This is the best way of ensuring you get to enjoy it, and that you develop a keen interest. So, here are some of the supplies you need to make sure you have if you want to start stamp collecting.

Money

Okay, so maybe money isn’t classed as supplies, but you still need it. You’re going to need to be paying for the supplies you do need. And you’re going to have to cough up for the rarer, more expensive stamps. You should think about doing a bit of research before you get started so you have an idea of the sort of costs you’ll be dealing with. Any hobby that you start to take seriously is going to cost you money to sustain. And, if you want to go into stamp investment you will need to spend a bit more. So, find out how much money you’re going to need to spend to sustain and develop your stamp collection.

Album

The staple for any stamp collector is getting an album. You are going to have a lot of stamps, and you need to make sure you look after them. A lot of these stamps are going to cost quite a bit of money. You need to look after and preserve your collection as much as you can. It’s important to take pride in your hobbies and preserve your investments. And the best way of doing this is to make sure you have a stamp album or folder. This will allow you to display the stamp collection is an attractive and safe way. You’ll protect the stamps from damage, and you’ll be able to organise them into some kind of order. An album needs to be one of your first purchases to get your stamp collection up and running.

Stamps!

Of course, anyone wanting to collect stamps is going to need actual stamps! So, this needs to be a focus for you. Have a think about the sorts of stamps you would like to buy. There are the basic levels of stamps which will be cheaper. You can also get limited edition ones as well. Then there are much rarer stamps that can cost a lot of money. The idea is to build up your collection with a nice array and selection of stamps. The better the range, the better and more impressive your collection will be. You might want to think about getting some of the more expensive and important stamps insured to protect them.

Additional Supplies

Stamp collecting supplies are readily available these days, and you can get them online or in stores. You need to think about what other tools and accessories you might need to get your collecting underway. For instance, you’re probably going to want to have a rotary cutter and some stamp tweezers. You need to treat your stamps with care, particularly if they are expensive and rare. So, make sure you get all the additional extras you can to help you get the best out of your new hobby.

If you can assess and assimilate everything involved in stamp collecting you will find it much more accessible. It’s such a great hobby and interest to take up, so you need to make sure you have everything you need to get started. Use this post as a guide to help you understand all the supplies you need when it comes to collecting stamps. There are so many other things you could get as well, but you may want to wait until the hobby becomes a little more serious.

Should you put your money in gold or oil?

These days, people wanting to make sensible investments need to look at the market. You’ve got to check out commodities, and see what is available. It’s important to be sensible about what you choose and ensure that you make safe investments. The key is trying to discern what the best bet is to get you the highest return on investment possible. So, you will have to look at the most popular and lucrative investment options.

When thinking about how to improve your portfolio you have to consider commodities. Let’s take a look at two of the most popular choices for investors around the world – gold and oil. Now, these prove hugely popular with a lot of people, and some investors often invest in both. But, you need to make sure you decide which one you would like to invest in. And the only way of doing this is by figuring out which is the better investment opportunity. So, let’s take a look at what is a better option and whether you should invest in gold or oil.

Oil

Everything Depends on Oil

The major benefit of oil these days is that everything depends on oil. We need it to run our society, so there is always going to be a demand for it. Because of that, it makes a great choice in terms of investment. It’s important to understand that you’ve got to tap into the supply and demand market. You need to look at making decisions that you will make a good profit on later down the line. The price of oil has risen in the last ten years quite considerably, and it’s likely to do the same again in the future too.

Tax Benefits

A great thing about choosing oil to invest in is the fact that you get to benefit from tax breaks by doing so. Take a look at the tax benefits you might be able to enjoy by investing in oil. There is a lot of information about this on the internet. The US government has so many tax incentives in place to encourage both individuals and companies to invest in oil. Make sure you do a bit of research so you can find out what these are. It would be a shame to miss out on opportunities of making further savings due to not doing the necessary groundwork and research.

Market Always Fluctuating

The main problem with oil is the fact that the market is always fluctuating. And there are so many global factors that can have a negative impact on the oil industry. And you’ve got to be aware of what these problems are, and how they affect the market. This makes oil a high-risk investment because you can never be sure what the market is going to do.

Gold

Luxury

You have to think about what it is that makes gold such a popular investment. The main thing you need to understand is the attitude that people have towards it. Gold is seen as a big luxury and status symbol. And, by investing in gold, you will be improving and boosting your profile. People will see you as an investor to be taken seriously, and someone at home in the luxury market. You might be surprised by what doors this can open for you in your life. So, think about how much more luxurious the idea of gold investment is over oil investment. This is why you need to think seriously about investing in gold instead of oil

Amazing Return on Investment

Deciding to invest in gold is a big decision, but it can also yield an enormous return on investment in the end. And, as an investor, this is what you’re looking for. There are so many different things that are safe investments, and that offer good returns. But very few of them are as lucrative as gold can be. Gold value is expected to rise by around 200%, and could see a rise as high as 400-500%! If you get in there at the right time, gold can be hugely lucrative.

There’s Too Much Oil

One of the major advantages of picking gold over oil is that there is too much oil in the world! Fracking initiatives have opened up access to much more oil than there was ever access to before. And this has meant that the return on investment for oil is now much lower than it would have been even a few years ago. So, you need to make sure you choose gold instead so you can enjoy the

From reading through the advice and guidance on here, you should have no problems discerning the right choice. You have to be wary because the market is always changing. And economic and social factors can play a huge role. But, you need to understand that this is always a risk when you choose to make investments. It’s clear that at the moment gold is probably your best bet in terms of investing. The return is fantastic, the market is not as volatile as oil, and it’s more of a commodity too. So, if you’re looking to increase and expand your investment portfolio, then gold is certainly the way forward.

How to Develop Passive Income Streams

Passive income streams are a great way to earn a little extra cash, put more money into your future, and build a larger safety net for your emergency fund. And, the more streams you have, the easier it will be to manage your finances when one of them takes a turn for the worst. But what, exactly, is a passive income stream and how do you develop your portfolio for maximum benefit? Read on to find out the answer to these important questions – and more.

What are passive income streams?

Passive income is a source of financial income that you get from work or investment, at a later date. As soon as you have invested your time and money into a project, you will earn from it, with little upkeep on your behalf. A good example is a book or a website. You write a book, or develop a website packed full of content, and the proceeds arrive after the event. When it comes to passive income streams, it’s the process of having several sources of revenue. So, following the examples we already mentioned, you could publish a range of books or several websites.

Benefits

There are plenty of benefits of creating passive income streams for your finances. For a start, it gives you more financial security. But, not only that, it frees up your time. If you are earning from several different sources, you can use your time a lot better. You could work on your next project, perhaps, spend time with your family, or do something you love. If you make a success of your passive income streams, you will enjoy a freedom you just can’t achieve with an average job.

Choose your weapons

Now, let’s take a look at some of the options you have when considering different passive income streams. Websites and books are good examples which we have covered already., so let’s take a look at some different areas. Stocks and shares are perfect examples. You invest your money in a company, and when they perform well, you get returns in the form of dividends. Savings accounts work in the same kind of way – you enjoy the interest that your savings accrue over time. Annuities, Bonds, and buy-to-let properties are the alternatives.

Avoiding risk

Just as you would with any other investment portfolio, you should be aware of the risks of investing in passive income streams. Take website creation as an example. You will spend a lot of time writing blog posts, as well as investing in video productions, infographics, podcasts and all kinds of content. And, of course, there’s the development and SEO of your website to cover, too. It all adds up to a lot of time and money – but what if things don’t work out how you planned? Furthermore, things could be successful to begin with, and you start getting used to the income you get from your site. But what happens if something happens outside of your control and things go awry? If you are reliant on that money, it can be a significant hit to your income. So, the best strategy is to make sure that your passive income streams are varied – just as your investment portfolio should be. A healthy mix of streams will protect you from something going wrong and leaving you in the lurch.

Make a plan

As with everything in life, you will have more chance of success if you have a good plan to work from. Passive income streams are all about saving money and investing it in the right areas, so keep this in mind when you are in the planning stage. You will have to save an amount of money every month, invest some of that into different areas, and then start working on each project until you finish. We won’t lie – it’s going to be hard work to kick things off. But, if your plan is robust enough, it will keep you on track until things start to gain momentum.

Set targets

Again, see your passive income streams like you would treat any investment. Take a look at your standard savings accounts and make a note of the interest rates. Let’s say that it is set at 4%. So, if your passive income streams are earning you less than that on your initial investment – in time or money – it is a pointless exercise. Your passive income streams have to be worth more than that, as you will be putting in time and effort. Otherwise, you might as well keep all your money in your 4% savings account and letting it grow there while you do nothing.

Keep your discipline

Try to keep your passive income streams separate from all your other finances. You have to have discipline, no matter how tempting it might be to withdraw your money. The harder it is to access your cash, the easier you will find it to keep it there – even in the event of an emergency. Make sure that you personal emergency fund is large enough to cover everything else that could go wrong in your life. Car breakdowns and medical payments are typical examples. You have to be prepared to keep those investments up if you want your passive income streams to work out.

Get started

Finally, it’s all well and good thinking and talking about passive income streams. One thing you can guarantee, though, is that you won’t enjoy the benefits until you start working on them. Passive income streams can lead to financial independence. But, you have to force yourself to address your finances sooner rather than later. Identify all the problem areas where you are leaking money and fix them. Organise your savings so that you have money for emergencies. Cut back on your bad spending habits and concentrate on saving cash wherever you can. And, cut out all the distractions in your life that are stopping you from fulfilling your goals. Only when you can get a grip on your finances will you be able to move forward. Getting started is the hardest part in some cases – so commit yourself today!

5 Passive Income Ideas

Passive income has an enormous appeal – who doesn’t like the idea of earning money for doing little? But, few people think they have the opportunity to get started, and believe it to be an activity from which only the wealthy can receive the benefits. So, if you have some passive income ideas, what do you need to know, and where should you focus your attention? In this guide, we’re going to take a look at five great passive income ideas that you can get started with.

First of all, though there is one thing to understand. Passive income does require a little work on your behalf. It’s not about getting something for nothing, and there is still work involved. The difference is that you put the work in place first and then get the income. It’s not simply the case of handing over some cash and sitting back and cleaning up. Once you understand that, you can start to take a look at some of your options. Here are our top five ideas.

Dividends from stocks and shares

Stocks and shares are the traditional entry point for making a passive income. You invest in a company; they do well, and you get paid in dividends. However, as is always the case, things can go wrong – and you could end up passively losing money, not making it.

The trick is to research any company you are thinking of backing with your investment. Take a good look at their history, the management team, and also, look at the wider industry. If you are a novice, it is worth getting a financial advisor in to give you a few pointers. And, of course, you can also take some finance classes so that you are aware of the terminology and theories behind sound investments.

Earn money from activities you already do

Another thing to think about is making money from the activities you already do. This idea is perfect for more creative folk such as artists, writers, musicians and photographers. For example, there are many websites out there that let you license your photos online. Try Shutterstock or a similar service to get started. There are similar services for musicians to use, too.

Writers can also get themselves a passive income by writing a book and releasing it on a platform like Kindle. You put the hard work in to write your book, release it, and every time you make a sale, you will get paid. If you can create a buzz about your book in the early stages of the release, you will stand a much better chance of earning more, for longer.

For musicians, you also have several opportunities. Take a service like BeatPick, for example. You can submit music to them, and they promote your music to film and TV show makers, advertisers and video game makers. Your music gets licensed out, and every time it picks up royalties, you get half the money.

Rental income

As you are most likely aware, rental property investment is an old and traditional passive income idea. It is, however, a lot more work than you might think. Again, the challenge is to learn about how to make your investment profitable before you get started. If you don’t, there are serious dangers that you will lose money instead of making anything – let alone passively.

The first thing to work out is what sort of return you want. You’ll also need to look at rental rates in the area, mortgage costs, and then throw in some extra for maintenance and taxes. Only when you know those figure inside out can you set your rental rate goals.

There are a few ways to squeeze a little extra out of your property, too. For example, if you let to students, you could create two smaller bedrooms out of one large room, giving you more potential returns.

Start a blog

If you are passionate about a particular subject and fancy yourself as a writer, why not start a blog? It’s a great way of generating income for doing something you love.

There is some heavy lifting involved, of course. Building a robust website is going to cost a little investment. But, once you start to get some decent traffic coming to your site and reading your articles, it could pay off.

Look into Google AdSense to get started. Google will post ads on your site when they are relevant to your article, and they will pay you for any views or click-throughs. You can also think about becoming an Amazon affiliate. If someone clicks through on an ad and ends up buying a product, you will get a small commission.

Peer to peer lending

Peer to peer – or P2P – lending is an increasingly popular way of generating passive income. You can expect returns of anything from 5% to 9% on small loans – which isn’t bad at all regarding investment. There are lots of ways to do it, from the likes of Lending Works or Zopa. Your money goes to someone else who needs to borrow some cash, and you get your return at a set date later on down the line.

You can also look into lending to people in developing countries, too. For example, services like Kiva enable you to lend to people who need a kick start to help themselves become more independent. There are lots of community projects you can get involved in, too. So, P2P lending isn’t just for the serious investors amongst you – it’s for philanthropists, too.

However, it’s important to make sure that you don’t invest too much in individual borrowers. You will need to do a lot of background work on each of your investments. Your best bet is to look at making many different investments for small amounts of cash. It will help you minimise your risk, and avoid any nasty surprises if a borrower can’t pay you back.

These are just five examples of how to earn a passive income – and there are many more. But, always remember – it will take a little work beforehand before you can sit back and enjoy a high return!

What Type of Property Makes the Best Real Estate Investment?

Lots of people like to get involved in investing these days. It’s important to make plans for the future and to try to generate more income. By investing you get to sort out financial security for when you get older. It’s just a case of making sensible investments, and knowing what you’re doing when it comes to the investments. So, the best thing to do is to make sure you do a bit of research before you actually spend any money.

There are a lot of things you might be able to do to help you achieve this. You could consult a financial advisor to get advice and knowledge about your investments. Now, if you’re planning on investing then you most probably will be considering the real estate sector at some point. This is easily the most lucrative sector out there, but it is also high-risk. So, you need to make sure you understand what is involved when it comes to investing in real estate. Have a think about the best real estate investment ideas that will help you. Know what your choices and options are before you get started.

House

When you first decide to start making investments in real estate you might think about investing in houses. A lot of people will start off with one house, and make sure they do it up until it’s perfect. Then you can think about expanding your investment portfolio. The great thing about a house is that it provides an excellent long-term investment. It’s a property you can keep for decades if you want to. When it comes to buying your first house, you need to decide what you want to do with it. Now, a lot of people choose to live in the house they invest in. This allows them to develop it over the years and make additions and extensions if necessary. You might, however, decide that you want to buy a home that is separate from yours. People opt to do this for one of two reasons. They want to do it up, and either sell it or rent it out. Now, generally, people choose to go down the rental route because it can often prove more lucrative. So this is something that you need to make a decision about yourself.

Apartment

If you elect not to invest in a house you might think about going for flats instead. Now, there are positives and negatives on either side, and you will have to weigh up what suits you best. In general you’re going to find that a flat will cost less than a house, so this is a plus right away. In fact, in some cases you might be able to get two flats for the cost of a house. The advantage of getting flats is that there is less work to do in terms of fixing them up. And often extensions do not apply. You can move people in fairly quickly to get yourself a foot in the rental market. You might consider renting for a couple of years before selling up. A lot of flats will climb in price once you buy them, so this makes for a lucrative return on investment eventually.

Beachfront Condo

Aside from a house or a flat you also have a few other options for properties you could invest in as well. A beachfront condo would be an excellent choice if you have the weather and location for it. This gives you the opportunity to sink your teeth into some beach front property and get a handle on the tourism market. The advantage of beachfront condos is that there is a huge demand for them so you will never be short of applicants. Though, you must remember in certain climates you may have to have the condo as a seasonal residence. It’s also going to be a lot of work to maintain as you need it to convey the luxury of beachside property at all times.

You need to think about how you can make the most amount of money from your investment. Now, you need to remember that investing in real estate can be difficult these days. It can be such an uncertain market that you can’t be sure how well your money is going to do. That’s why a lot of people can sometimes be tentative about investing in real estate. But, if you get the investment right, it can end up being hugely lucrative for you. You need to decide on the best form of investment in real estate. And you will probably find that renting a place out for a while makes you a lot more cash than any other form of real estate investment.

Should You Invest in Singapore?

Singapore is one of the most popular and thriving countries in Asia. Many people don’t look beyond China or Japan, or possibly Malaysia. But, Singapore is a rich and thriving nation that provides so many opportunities for people looking to invest. There are so many things you need to take a look at that can provide great opportunities for you. It’s important to understand what it is that makes Singapore such a great hub for investment.

And to do this, it’s important to take into account the economy, geography and culture of the country. When you make an investment, you need to be sensible with your money as much as you can. So, you have to know you’re making the right investment for the future. And that’s why you need to know whether or not you should invest in Singapore. Well, it all depends on your approach and philosophy when it comes to investing. But, in general, there are a lot of positive reasons to invest in Singapore. And here are some of the ones you need to make sure you take into account.

Close to China

One of the best things about investing in Singapore is its geography. The country is situated very close to China and has strong trade links with China. As we know, China is one of the world’s superpowers, and this can only be a good thing. As the economy of China continues to grow it will help Singapore grow at the same time. And, as it grows the cost of investing and the returns involved will be much higher. So, you need to take advantage of the opportunities you have now to make sure you invest as soon as possible. In fact, the proximity to China provides you with a  more cost-effective alternative to investing in China.

Diverse Economy

When you choose to invest in a country, you always need to think about the economy you’re investing in. You have to look at the range of economic opportunities on offer, and how healthy the economic situation is. It’s important to take all this into account before you make any kind of decision about the sort of investing you’ll be doing. It’s also important to consider any factors that will impact on the economy. So, when it comes to Singapore you need to think about how diverse the economy is. For one thing, it has a massive tourism industry that helps it to boom and evolve. There are also strong economic ties to shipping, real estate and financial services as well. So, the nature of the economy, and how strong it is, is one of the best reasons to try to invest some of your money in Singapore.

Booming Real Estate

One of the best reasons to invest in Singapore is the strength of its real estate industry. You might not think of it in this way, but the country has a thriving and booming real estate industry. It attracts many expats from across the world and is considered the leading real estate hub in Asia. Now, there are many reasons why Singapore real estate is so attractive. It’s a lot easier to deal with the process of buying property, and finding what you’re looking for. There are also benefits like the location of the country and flexible price negotiations. Investing in the Singapore real estate sector is one of the best ways to make yourself good profits. And it’s one of the major plus points for choosing to invest in the country itself.

Lucrative

Another thing to consider is how lucrative it is to invest in Singapore. The country is developing and burgeoning year on year. It is often referred to as the Switzerland of Asia due to its economic prowess. The country has an excellent literacy rate, low rates of crime and corruption, and no drug problem. This makes it a perfect place for you to start investing in as soon as you can. The economy can make for highly lucrative returns and, as such, you need to make sure you invest in Singapore.

After you have reached the end of this guide, you should have come to a conclusion about Singapore. It is one of the premiere countries in the world for investment opportunities. You need to try to create a diverse investment portfolio with many different irons in the fire. And, the way to achieve this is to make sure you look at the best areas of Singapore to invest in. The economy is so rich and diverse that you should have no problems coming up with something ideal. You definitely need to make Singapore a big part of your Asian investment portfolio. Whether you’re a seasoned investor, or just starting out, Singapore should have something to offer you.