Paying Phone Calls

A few days ago, I made two phone calls that brought me $1600. The two calls were made following 2 hours of work. So we’re talking about a job that reported $800/hour NET, or $1100/hour before taxes.

How?

First Call

The payment of my mortgage is due every beginning of the month: January 1st,  February 1st, etc. The month in which the payment is made account for the accumulation of interest. For example, if the January 1 payment is made in December, the interest will be accounting for the month of December rather than the month of January. Interest will therefore be calculated in 2017 and not in 2018. Finally, interest is deductible in the United States.

Payment of $2900, including $1700 of interest. Following the deduction, I save $553 in federal and $158 in California. Total: $711

Note: This does not come back to the same as losing the interest deduction for 2018. Trump’s tax reform for 2018 changes the rules. It makes itemization for deductibility more difficult by giving a higher basic standard deduction. Furthermore, it reduces the tax rate, which means that a deduction in 2017 is worth more than in 2018. Finally, even if none of these arguments were true, it is always better to get tax refund earlier than later.

Second call

I started Credit Card Churning. I went with the Chase Ink Business Preferred card. It gives 3% on certain expense categories such as telephone, Internet, Office supply, shipping. There’s a 80,000 bonus points sign-up bonus. These are worth $800, or $1000 if spent on travel. You have to spend $5000 on the next 3 months with the card to get the bonus. So I will redistribute some of my expenses on this card. In order to meet the required spending, gift cards can also be bought as well.

There is a $100 annual fee on the card, but I downgrade the card next year before it renews to avoid a second annual fee. All Chase maps allow the points to be transferred so they are not lost.

Grand total of both calls: $711 + $1000-$100 = $1611. To get $1611 net, I would need about $2200 of income, or $1100/hour. Incredible! I would have a lot of difficulty, aside from being CEO of a big company, asking people to pay me $1100 per hour for any of my skills.

Think about it the next time you negotiate price, or try to find a rebate for an item. How much are you paid/hour while doing that? If it’s higher than your current job, it’s worth it ! What is the value of your time?

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