Financial Freedom Secrets (Part 1): Make Good Return on Investment

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My name is David Coss. My wife and I have 5 young children. We have been able to travel and live in many cities around the world. We’ve been able to retire even though we were on low wages, sometimes we only had one wage, and at other times no wages at all. I want to show you how we achieved financial freedom and how you can do it too.


Today, I’m going to reveal the one key that’ll unlock success in every area of your life, especially your finances. I know that’s a bold statement. But before I get to that I want to talk about your investments. To most people investments are only things like stocks, gold and real estate. But I would like you to consider that there are four areas of investment we need to manage to gain success. They are time, energy, resources and finances. We have a limited supply of each of these so we need to steward them well. Managing these four areas helps cut out negative things that keep you from moving closer to your goals.


Okay, let’s look at how this relates to the one key that’ll unlock success in every area of your life. The key is actually a question you ask yourself. You’re thinking I am a bit crazy now, right? Okay, for whatever you want do you need to ask yourself this: What is my return on investment (ROI)? What do I mean by that? We need to calculate the return on the investment for the time, finances, resources and energies in whatever we do.  It’s probably best explained by giving some examples.


Exhibit A: Time

Watching a 10-hour Chuck Norris DVD series all the way through is generally not a good use of time. Unless it’s some sort of documentary that helps you with your work or in your efforts to reach your goals. I’m not saying you shouldn’t watch it. Watching the DVD series isn’t the issue. But investing so much time in one sitting is. You’re sacrificing time on one thing to invest into another with very little ROI. And here’s the thing: once you compromise the first time, you’ll most likely do it again.


Exhibit B: Energy

Anything that uses a lot of your energy for things that aren’t healthy for you should be avoided. We only have so much energy in a day and it should be reserved for those things that will give us a good ROI. Teaching your children can take a lot of energy (so much energy!), but is necessary for their development. Now, worrying about something you can’t change the outcome for is a thing you can do without.


Exhibit C: Finances

Our money is finite and can be easily consumed if we don’t take stock of where it goes. Where we spend money will determine if we’re gaining wealth or losing it. I wouldn’t consider buying coffee every day a good ROI. Why? Because it is addictive, so it’s not healthy for you. It cost money and then just ends up in the toilet. Okay, so that’s my personal opinion. You need to calculate the ROI for yourself. Is what I am about to purchase a good ROI? If it’s not then why buy it? Think of the money you could save. It’s something you need to consider if you want to become financially free.


Exhibit D: Resources

Things we control can be used as consumer items that’ll deteriorate to no value over time or for building wealth. The gifts and skills we have can also be used for creating wealth. Renting out your spare room on AirBnB could be considered a good use of an unused resource. We should direct our resources toward areas where we can add value to others.


Sometimes you might find that all four overlap in any given situation. For example, if you invite someone out to lunch you might use them all. You might use the resource of your car to pick them up. I guess you would be paying so you are using your finances. If you have to keep thinking of conversation points then you are expending energy. All of that takes time, so that is used up as well.


Before you make that lunch offer you’ll have to decide if it is all worth the effort. It might be an easier decision if you are asking your wife rather than someone who has bad breath and a quirky laugh. The decisions we make aren’t as easy as just doing whatever gives us pleasure now. Because whatever you do now determines your destiny. So, if what you do now is selfish it will come back to you in the future. You’re always investing into something whether you’re working hard or relaxing. You’re excluding one thing in order to be able to do another. You’re deciding what’s important at the cost of giving something else up. It happens in every single decision you make.


Asking the question, “What is my Return on investment?” for every situation might at first seem tedious or overwhelming. You might have to work on it. But like with anything if you continue in it for long enough it’ll become a habit and then it won’t be difficult. It’ll soon become automatic and not take any extra time at all. It can help you eliminate those bad choices from your life.


This has been one of the key factors in my wife and I becoming wealthy. Stay tuned for part 2 of this series.

New Book Coming Soon!

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I reached financial freedom a few years back and I have written a book about it. I thought the book was pretty good, but it was terrible. It was all over the place. There were redundant sentences, bad grammar and rubbish dressed up to sound like something useful. All in all, it wasn’t good enough to throw in the trash can.


What to do? Give up? Pay someone to do it for me? Give up (did I say that twice?). None of the above. I decided to do something about it. If I had known how much time and effort it would take over the last 4 years I am not sure I would ever have started. But start I did and now hopefully I have finished something I am proud of. Like a dad with his new baby girl(I just threw that in there because I had another baby recently). That’s number 5!


Anyway, I’m looking for some beta readers who will give me their honest feedback about the book. In return, I will give you a copy of the book with a page added to acknowledge your help.


Here is the Blurb:
Why do you want to retire when you are old when you can retire years or even decades earlier? This book reveals the “finance liberation” model, a secret six step process that sets you up for financial freedom in a short amount of time.


This step by step guide to financial freedom teaches:


– How David and family managed on one low wage to become financially free in a few short years
– How to travel around the world and still gain wealth
– How to achieve your personal dreams as well as your financial ones
– The one key to success in every area of your life


If you would like to be a beta reader, please go here:

Beta Reader Registration




You Can Always Afford a Holiday This Way

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Imagine waking up whenever you want to the sounds of exotic birds and beautiful scenery. It’s wonderfully warm and you decide to take a quick dip in the pool before having breakfast including tropical fruit. This was our life in Fiji. We were there for around 3 months at a time over the last couple of years. It was great. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be able to take a holiday like that whenever you wanted? Well, you can.
Well, maybe you can.
Well, if you meet the right criteria you can.
How to do it
Here are the criteria;
You need to have income that doesn’t require you to be at a fixed location.
You need your accommodation expenses where you normally live to be paid by someone else.
This is so simple, yet so powerful. You could easily do this without the above if you have already had the money. But I intend to make money while on holiday. The aim is to get wealthier not just get by.
The first part requires you to have an income that is not location dependent. You could get a job that doesn’t need you to be in a certain location (or some kind of work from the location where you want to be like the working holiday idea). It’s easier if you’re retired. I suggest everyone to aim to get to this position, even if you want to work.
The second part, if you have accommodation costs where you live you need someone to pay for it. What do I mean? If you are renting somewhere, then you would need to stop renting. If you own your own property, you would want someone to rent your property while you’re away on holiday. That way you don’t have the extra costs while on holiday.
Stay Longer
It works out better to stay at your holiday destination longer because it divides the costs of travelling each week. Let me explain. If your travel cost is $2000 and you stay for 1 week, then it’s $2000 per week that you’ve spent to stay there in travel costs. It would be $400 for five and $200 for ten weeks and so on. We try to budget so that all the costs of travel are around the same or less than what we would pay at home.
Most people pay a huge amount of money for their one-week getaway. We actually are at least break even if not gaining when we take our long term excursion. This makes it a no-brainer to think whether to take that “holiday” or not. Of course, it’s harder if you live somewhere where living costs are low and the holiday place is more expensive.
This strategy has helped us to travel for extensive “holidays”:
In 2001 we went to Melbourne for 6 months (including travelling back to New Zealand every few weeks).
In 2004 we lived in Guangzhou for 2 years (including travelling back to NZ for Christmases).
In 2010 we went to Zhuhai, China for 3 months.
In 2012 we lived in Brisbane for 2 years (including travelling back to NZ for Christmases and other things).
In 2015 and 2016 we went to Fiji (twice for 3 months each time).
Currently, we are in Brisbane, but planning our next move.
DISCLAIMER, we may or may not have been aware of this strategy on some or all of these so called holidays. You get to see the world while still getting wealthier. It’s awesome!
Where to Aim For
Look outside the CBD in suburban areas. Or on the fringe of major tourist holiday hotspots. We are not talking about staying at 4 or 5-star resorts but in residential accommodation. You pay premium inflated prices for hotels that don’t have real living facilities (like kitchens and bedrooms). Whereas in renting in the local residential market you will be competing at market rates. You need to get something furnished. That means it needs to come with beds, fridge, microwave, kitchen stuff, washing machine and so on. It might be difficult to find in peak season and some places might not have many options. But, we’ve found that you could pay around the same or just a bit more for furnished as you would for unfurnished.
When to Travel
If you can’t travel for long periods try taking your breaks during times when schools are in session. Because you can save so much more in travel and accommodation costs when you aren’t competing with every man and his dog (or kids in this case). We have 5 young kids, so travelling becomes much more complicated. But because we home-school them, then it easier to go whenever without waiting for school breaks.
Cheap Short-term Holiday Accommodation
If for some strange reason you can’t go long-term, below are short-term and cheap accommodation ideas. We’ve stayed at a house right on the beach for US$30 a night, a house right across from the beach for around US$120 per week and even a house with beautiful views for just a donation. They weren’t high-class swanky joints. The last thing you want on your holiday is to be hovering over the kids to make sure they don’t bring any sand or stray crabs in from the beach. You’d be surprised at what is available for very cheap outside of peak times. You just have to search outside the mainstream Google results.
We stayed at a large house right across from the beach for USD$120 per week. Friends (more like acquaintances) had a family holiday home that they wanted to rent and we needed somewhere to stay.
We had friends who had friends that owned a beautiful lakefront house that could sleep a couple of families. Not sure the price, but he said it was really cheap.
Timeshare Weeks
From USD$80 per week. If you know someone who has a timeshare, you can get them to enter into a community that either swaps or lets you rent a timeshare.
Missions Organisations
Some missions organisations have holiday or retreat houses available to rent. We were able to rent a beachfront house. It wasn’t in the middle of nowhere either. It was a world famous beach. It was around USD$30 per night.
Union Organisations
Some union organisations have accommodation that they rent out to their members and dependents.
Work Welfare Trusts
Sometimes organisations have or subscribe to trusts that have access to accommodation. NZ Post. I did not know about it until a fellow employee told me. My wife and I stayed in Queenstown, NZ for USD$80 for a week.