How to build your passive income lifestyle starting today

How to build your passive income lifestyle, beginning today

The passive income lifestyle is a lifestyle where your passive income, be it passive rental income, passive dividend income, passive business income; is more than your living expenses.

It is a very, very nice place to be in, and not only does every passive income feels so nice, it also works to lifts up so much of my pressure. Frankly, there are a lot of ways that can lead you to the passive income lifestyle (so many investment vehicles, types, opportunities), but I dont want to create more work or complexities for myself.

To me, it has to be “true” passive and simple to maintain, so I simplified the basic passive income lifestyle concept to be boring but systematic:

  1. have a steady day job
  2. save as much as possible
  3. invest aggressively into dividend stocks that pay you at least 7.5% per year (ideally 10% and above) consistently
  4. reinvest majority of dividends
  5. until your portfolio’s yearly dividend passive income is same or more than your yearly living expenses.

That’s it.

The 3 biggest factors that will impact your passive income portfolio

They are:

  1. how much you can invest regularly (this depends on how much you earn and spend)
  2. how much is the rate of return of your passive income (ideally 10% per year but 7.5% is decent)
  3. lastly, time

Time plays the most powerful compounding effect. Albert Einstein quipped, saying that compound interest is the 8th wonder of the world, and I agree.

Compound interest, simplified

Compound interest is basically how your money grow with interest return + time.

Let me show you a basic example: say you can invest $10,000 a year ($833.33 a month) into a dividend stock that returns you 10% per annum; and you reinvest every dividend return.

  • Year 1: Invest $10,000 + 10% = $11,000 end of year
  • Year 2: Invest $10,000 + $11,000 from previous year + 10% = $23,100
  • Year 3: Invest $10,000 + $23,100 from previous year + 10% = $36,410
  • Year 4: Invest $10,000 + $36,410 from previous year + 10% = $51,051
  • Year 10: $159,310.50
  • Year 15: $317,597.73
  • Year 25: $983,077.21
  • Year 50: $11,634,429.65

Instead of plain saving $10,000 x 50 years = $500,000; you can get a much bigger amount with compounding interest.

Start your basic passive income lifestyle today

  1. Save as much as you can
  2. Start investing into dividend stocks that gives at least 7.5% per year
  3. Continue investing and reinvesting the dividends

It takes time for compounding effect to work its magic, and the more time you have, the more it’d work wondrously in your favor…but conversely, the less time you have, the more obvious the shortfall. Eg a person who has 40 years to invest has a lot more time-based benefits compared to someone who only has 10, and that’s why because I dont have high earning capacity as high income professions such as doctors, I knew I needed to start a business to level up.

If you want to level up to earn more, retire faster

Then you gotta earn more.

For most people who have time on their side and have a good chunk to invest monthly, they can take their time to invest regularly, ie dollar-cost-average (DCA) into stable dividend stocks. It is a good way. I take this approach one level up with my businesses which serves to help me accelerate my earning rate (it’s fun and complex too ehehe)

Quick money side hustles

These include the low-hanging fruits of app-based works such as

  • driving for Uber, Lyft, Grab
  • sending items with DoorDash or similar
  • pet walking / baby sitting
  • etc

These are the kind of work that can help you earn an extra $50-100+ a day on your schedule, as part of your routine.

Learn high income skills

High income skills are skills and work that are higher value, such as

  • property agents / realtors
  • insurance agents
  • copywriters / direct sales
  • trade skills such as plumbing, electrical

and can typically earn you $100k/year.

Scale up businesses

Scaling up a business means to grow, hire and delegate, but before we go there, let me first say that it’s not always a necessity. It’s wayyyy more complex and difficult, but of course, has the most potential. Not everyone is keen or hungry to scale up businesses, and that is fine.

An example of scaling up a physical business is if you’re a realtor, you can consider recruiting a team of 5-10+ sales agents under your belt, where you then train them and lead them to grow their own businesses under your business. The upside is that you can multiply your income exponentially…when done right.

When done wrong, it can mean you working 24/7, tired and burnt out. Or lose money.

Normally, I recommend people to either do something low-hanging such as the quick small wins type or building a $100k+ per year freelancing business, because it’s less complex. If you want to do something that can scale, you can consider starting a blogging business where it can cost a few hundred bucks a year on the side.

Blogging is a publishing business where it can become a powerful passive income business with scale, but it does take a lot of time (at least a minimum of 2 years+) for it to take traction, build followers etc. The goal is to build a good enough following who likes what you write and do, and then monetize by display ads and creating products that help your followers.

I use this platform to learn how to build my profitable blogging business.

Invest the profits from businesses and side gigs into dividend stocks

The profits I use to invest into dividend stocks (mainly as core) as well as some into high-risk-high-growth investments such as crypto. Profits from high-risk-high-growth investments are taken out to decrease risk and invest into more dividend stocks and pay for primary home.

Rinse and repeat.

4 Profitable Side Hustle That Works in 2022 (my fav is #2)

Earning more is never wrong.

Especially if you’re diversifying your income sources as well as monetizing your spare time instead of wasting it.

#1 Low hanging fruits: App-based services

Think of app-based services such as:

  • Food delivery: DoorDash, UberEats, GrabFood
  • People transport: Uber, Lyft, Grab
  • Parcel/item delivery: uparcel, LalaMove

and a lot more other similar businesses.

The good:

  • You can plug into the gig economy quickly and easily, simply by downloading the app(s) and applying to be a service provider.
  • Once they have approved your application, you can start work almost immediately (usually less than 7-14 days wait) and earn extra money daily
  • You can work around your schedule
  • Get paid quickly

The bad:

  • small-ish amounts

#2 Website + affiliate marketing (my fav)

This is by far my favorite.

The good:

  • you own your own website, which is similar to an online magazine that belongs to you (and no one can take it away from you – it’s your asset that you can grow or even sell or even give to your kids if you want to)
  • no income ceiling – you can earn a lot (there are bloggers earning $10K+ a month and more)
  • you can be as creative as you want
  • you can sell anything…as long as there is market
  • scalable with technology
  • 24/7
  • work from anywhere

The bad:

  • it takes time – at least 18-24+ months to see your first dollar
  • high learning curve (tech can be overwhelming in the beginning)
  • sometimes you can get hacked

It’s one of the hardest type of businesses to build, but it’s worth it when it works.

I learn how to build a profitable online business with Wealthy Affiliate (affiliate link). Sign up for free and no credit card needed – test it, speak to the community there, and then if, and only if, you’re ready to commit to building profitable online business, sign up.

#3 Buy low sell high

This is one of the fastest way to make money, but you need to be in the know. It’s one of the oldest form of business, where you buy (or make things) and sell it for a profit.

Some ideas of things you can sell includes baby wearing wraps and carriers, carpets, furniture, food and drinks (think bakes) as well as collectibles like NFT and pokemon cards.

The good:

  • it works
  • can be fun

The bad:

  • carrying inventory can be stressful or complex (if it can rot/spoil, like food)
  • you will also need to be active in your community, such as FaceBook groups, craigslist, flea markets etc.

#4 Convenient to-you services

This will be my 2nd favorite way to earn more, which is to provide convenient home services.

It can be massage, physical therapy, physical training, nail works, plumbing, electrical, handyman, pet sitting/walking, grass cutting, house sitting etc

The good:

  • people will pay for convenience AND
  • people will pay when they dont know how to do it

The bad:

  • its a service, so you need to show up and do the work
  • you need to collect money

Earn more so that you can invest in investments that can pay you interests and dividends, or to go for holidays and dinners. Your money, your choice.

How to get money to finance your passive income goals (and dreams)

How To Get Money To Finance Your Passive Income Goals

Sometimes when I share my story where I started from zero to build up a 7-figure portfolio, people dismiss and summarize my wealth journey as fluke, that i’m somehow a lucky bastard.
Some think I was born rich because I look rich lol
But bros…I was born in a middle-class-to-poor family, and I have lots of memories of how we grow up pretty broke, some examples:
  • standing at the glass window of KFC and my embarrassed mother shoo-ing us away
  • returning cash gifts to my parents to “recycle” and give back
  • I ate a LOT of bean sprouts and eggs and carbs
  • oh the carbs – we would bulk buy plain biscuits and noodles from MAKRO, no longer around, and had lots of oatmeal, rice, porridge (oats or rice)

I really, really, really worked, learnt, saved, learnt some more to get to where I want to go, this was the typical life I had last 8+ years:

  1. Grind/worked 16-hour days, 7 days a week for 8 years after graduating (still working tho)
  2. Reinvesting every dollar, living very frugally
  3. …whilst people around me go on holidays, parties and buying whatever they liked

Is it easy to build passive income and retire early? Hell no!

It’s bloody tough and hard….if it’s easy, everyone would have lots of money, six pack abs and look forever 16 right (ehehe).
Of course I do it because it’s worth it – to me it means a lot to get streams of passive income as early as you can in life, ideally before 45 – so you can spend the next 45 years of your life playing and doing shit that’s important to you.

Ben Settle’s Gran Torino Story (from a movie) and what the movie taught me

I got an email from Ben Settle, and it summarizes how I began building my wealth and passive income journey. I figured it’s a good sharing story too.
Let me tell you the story told in Ben’s email:
==== Snippet from Ben’s email ====
So the snippet from the “Gran Torino” screenplay.
In the scene the old grouchy main character Walt — played by Clint Eastwood — is talking to the young loner teen Tao who he befriends about the valuable tool set in his garage, and how he got it.
TAO: I can’t afford to buy all this stuff.
WALT: I didn’t buy all this stuff at once, blockhead. I’ve lived here for fifty years. A man stays in one place long enough he tends to attract a decent set of tools.
TAO: Yeah, but…
WALT: Look, kid, I think I know where you’re going with this. You don’t need everything to maintain a house. I’m going to let you in on a little secret.
[Walt slaps down THREE items in quick succession.]
WALT: This is for you. Roll of duct tape, can of WD-40, and a pair of vise-grips. Any man who’s worth a shit can do half his household jobs with these three things. In the odd chance that doesn’t work out, you can borrow something.
And so the script goes…
==== End snippet from Ben’s email ====

2 points I picked up from Gran Torino story:

#1 – Start wherever you are, and start now.
Maybe it’s saving and investing $100 a month first. Or less or more, I don’t care.
Just start and keep going.
#2 – Keep it simple basic when you’re starting out
  1. Roll of duct tape = earn more / side hustle
  2. Can of WD-40 = stop buying shit that don’t advance your passive income goals
  3. Pair of vise-grips = investing and reinvesting into safe and reliable defensive assets

You just start where you are

You dont need a million dollars to start the ball rolling.

You dont need the best phones or computers or softwares or people.

Just start where you are and keep going.

I chose to freelance, and increased my base salary by at least 100%.

Entrepreneurship to earn more

So, I mentioned that I have / had some skills right? I’m a trained and license occupational therapist, so I can do related work in nursing homes, house calls etc.

I contacted an agency and secured a freelance job, which within first month increased my take home from $2000 before bonus to $4800 net.

Now before people start mentioning that I’m “luckier than some” because I had these skills and parents that funded my studies, I will agree. And I will add that you start where you are. Some of you will have skills and some dont. Some will have debt and some dont.

Whatever it is, start where you are.

It is waaaaaaay more important that you start and keep going, rather than having perfect line-up in your situation

I had no money when I started, so I spent what I had: time. I read blogs, books from libraries, met people and asked questions. As we earned more, we invested everything into growing the company. I went for classes and bought books and attended seminars on sales, money, management, marketing etc to improve my skills.

Made so many mistakes by upsetting clients or vendors, all the mistakes in the book.

We undercharged so much, and made little.

I was shit at negotiating, fearing that clients wont be happy.

I read and re-read all the marketing blogs and seminar materials I paid for.

And continued serving.

70% were happy, and 30% weren’t.

These got me experience dealing with realities of money, business and clients. It also got word of mouth going. The 70% referred me more clients.

Whenever possible, we took out some money to pay down our home so that we lived without debt.

I continued learning from the lessons and the processes on money, business and clients. I’m still learning and growing today, since I started my first business when I was 20 years old. I’m 40 years old today.

I continued to apply as I learned, and we grew the business more and more, and it was eventually acquired for a tidy 7-figure sum. I took that money and put some in real estate, and somehow, much went into crypto.

I’m going for classes to learn how to build an online business as well as use the money generated from crypto to live on where I pay for taxi, meals, grocery, even my power, water and gas bills!

So on and so forth.

Repeat until done

You may start your passive income and early retirement journey in debt or from zero, but as you stick with it long enough, keeping unnecessary costs low, earning more with side hustling and investing/reinvesting, you will find that your portfolio will grow and compound with time and continued investment.

You dont need to start out with a huge amount.

If you’re like me, starting out from zero, then you only need the retire early equivalent of duct tape, WD40 and vise-grips. My answer and conclusion is to start and keep going. Even if it’s $100 a month. Start there, keep at it. Pickup a side hustle, earn a couple hundred or more and chuck that into Vanguard. As you earn more, invest more and more

Work, save, invest, reinvest.

Do this again and again, over time.

Until you reach your portfolio target and ideal take home from investments.

Then you’re done, and onto the next.

The Most Important Lesson McDonald’s Founder Ray Kroc Taught About Becoming Rich

The Business Of Ray Kroc, Founder of McDonald’s

In 1974, Ray Kroc, founder of McDonald’s gave a talk at a MBA class at the University of Texas in Austin.

After the class, the students asked Ray to join them for some drinks, and he said okay, sure.

Between drinks, Ray asked them

What business am I in?”

The students laughed, because they thought Ray was just fooling around messing with them…but he was serious.

No one answered though.

Ray asked again, “what business do you think I’m in?”

The students laughed again, and a brave soul shouted,

Mr Ray, the whole world knows you’re the godfather of the burger business in McDonald’s.

Ray laughed and said – “yes. that’s what most people would think and say about me“.

He stopped and then shared this:

“Ladies and gentlemen, I am not in the hamburger business only – my true business is in real estate.”

Lesson #1

Ray then explained that in their business plan, yes, primary front end business was to sell hamburgers, fries and milkshake franchises, but he never lost sight his long term big goal, which was real estate.

That’s why every franchise that was sold, he paid particular attention to the location, reasons being

  • Number 1 reason: he knew that location was a very big factor in the success of each franchise
  • Number 2, his main game is real estate.

So what he did was that he got every person that bought McDonald’s franchise to pay for the land under the franchise for Ray Kroc’s organization.

Lesson #2

Of course these franchisees also made money as franchise owners and business owners – Ray didn’t just take and take.

He made many franchise owners rich in the process, and many of them ended up owning more than one franchise with him.

Today McDonald’s is the single largest owner of real estate in the world. They have real estate at locations at busiest street corners and intersections in the world.

I can already imagine the faces of students, their minds would have been blown upside down left right center.

Blow Mind Mind Blown GIF - Blow Mind Mind Blown Explode - Discover & Share  GIFs

What I learnt from Ray Kroc is to know my big and long term game, and to take step by step moves that bring me closer and closer to my goals. He also made others rich in the process.

What’s your business and game plan?

Are you building a business or having a career without a long term game?

If you hadn’t thought about it, it’s time to think about leveling up your game.

Maybe save more to invest in real estate locally and around the world, and get paid rental income.

Or put money in wealth management and get wealth managers to make you more.

Or vanguard and chill, as many fatFIREd individuals put it.

Whatever rocks your boat.

So what’s the business you’re in?

Have a think and let me know in the comments below.

Your Side Hustle Is Your Biggest Early Retirement Accelerator

I tell this to my family, friends and even employees/contractors all the time: keep your day job BUT start a side hustle during your free time.

Your day job is to put a roof over your head, food and drinks on the table and some savings.

Your side hustle?

It will change your financial future and will likely be your biggest early retirement accelerator, waaaaay more than ability to save and be frugal.

Not to mean that ability to save and spend wisely isn’t good, it’s a good start but if you truly want to retire early and be financially independent, then you need to consider starting a side hustle.

Entrepreneurship may sound overwhelming, but to me there’s nothing more exciting than a person who wants to take care of their own financial future, pursue their passions and dreams and start their own business.

There are so many what-ifs around entrepreneurhship that makes business overwhelming, which stops so many would-be entrepreneurs from starting – and that’s why I recommend keeping your day job, your full time job, and dip your toes in the water with a side hustle.

The Long Term Problem Of Inflation and Time

Free inflation Images & Pictures | Royalty-Free | FreeImages

Inflation is eating away the value of our money, and though banks are saying that the national inflation is low, say 2-ish percent…but the real inflation is when you go out to the marketplace and buy stuff for yourself.

United States February 2022 states that the inflation rates are 7.5%, highest since 1982. In Singapore, the petrol prices just went up 3-4x in a span of weeks in March 2022.

And we hadnt even touched on passive investment income and time.

Worse is “stagflation” where cost of living goes up, but wages dont catch up with the increase in costs.

So What Can You Do?

If you want to get out of the rat race, the very rat race that takes up most of your days and energy, then you need to change the way you think about making money in the first place.

After all, that is what that separates entrepreneurs from employees.

Employees tend to associate active work = income, which isn’t wrong. It’s called active income, and the only issue with this is that it’s finite and linked to your time.

Work equals income, no work equals no income.

As an entrepreneur, I dissociate time from earning, and instead, I build systems where I can help both clients and employees / contractors (or technology), whilst making a profit in between. This allows me to scale my business and profits beyond my two hands and my personal energy.

I made the decision a long time ago to not get too upset about how unfair or rigged the system is, and instead, to learn, to adapt and use the very same system to my advantage without hurting anyone.

Side Hustle Ideas

If you’re not sure about what side businesses to start, and this is especially if your true calling isn’t clear, then you can consider being a

  1. Consultant — Being a consultant is suitable for people who love the work they do but not the company. So instead of reinventing the wheel, you take your expertise, experience and skills you already process into part time consulting gigs. I do this with my main physical therapy business. Companies are eager to work with you because you have hands on experience and you may like it cos it’s a low cost start up…maybe all you need is to turn up or work from home with a laptop.
  2. Sales Agent — There are some agency work such as being selling properties (realtor), insurance, watches and cars. There are many other stuff that one can sell, these four examples are pretty common. property or realty agents, or insurance agents and the like, where you can sell other people’s products and get a commission, some are big ticket some are recurring commissions.
  3. Multi-level marketing / Network Marketing — I dont recommend this to start off, but they do provide great sales training…BUT you must do your research. The products must be solid and have strong track record (be careful, many pyramid schemes out there) and commit to growing your business, your business will grow.
  4. Turn your interests and hobbies into cash — There are interests that are monetizable, such as photography, woodworking, heck even knitting! You can build a business in your own community and start off by helping neighbours and people you know. Over time, effort, you will get more word-of-mouth referrals…getting paid to do shit you like. An extension of this is to start an online business sharing tips and information about stuff you care about, from knitting to teaching dog tricks to teaching babies to poop in toilet bowls. Learn how you can build an online business here (affiliate link and free to create account)
  5. Sharing economy — Such as AirBNB (room/home-sharing); Grab/Uber/Lyft for to deliver passengers or food and even parcels.

What You Can Do With The Side Hustle Profits

As you earn more and more in your side hustle, you can consider investing a portion of profits into

  1. dividend paying stocks or rental properties
  2. hiring more employees / contractors to scale your business
  3. creating products to sell and service your clients
  4. quit your job, retire or work part time if you so desire
  5. take more holidays
  6. be more generous with your loved ones and friends
  7. and more

All in all, the most important thing about starting a side hustle…is to give yourself more life and financial options and opportunities in life, that you otherwise wont have if you’re stuck.

When does passive income activity become non passive?

A man with his hands covered with mud

This is a great question, actually.

To me, passive income activities become non-passive when there is too much active time taken to generate and manage the activities that generate the passive income; or to manage the passive income itself.

I share much about two general types of passive income, which are:

  1. business passive income, where you build offline and/or online businesses, hire and delegate using processes, technology or people, to earn money for you even when you’re not working in the business (anymore or as much as before)
  2. investment passive income, where you invest your savings into dependable investment vehicles to work harder for you and make more money for you at a % return of investment (ROI)

Is investing passive?

Both aren’t exactly fully passive-passive, for example investment passive income.

Of course, even if you invested into index funds, dividend stocks and REITs, you will still have to

  • view your portfolio and adjust / rebalance your portfolio periodically
  • read and maybe respond to emails from your broker(s) and bankers
  • give instructions

Maybe almost-passive for those who do it that way; but you can also go the extreme end if you decide to read and research investment 12+ hours a day haha!

So if you’re the sort who wants to research a lot and spend more than 4++ hours a day on these activities, technically it’s already part time work.

But of course, if you like it a lot and it’s natural to you…does it count as well?

I leave that for you to decide.

Note: But to reach this level, you’d probably need a good chunk invested (to get $50K dividends a year on 5% ROI, you’d need at least $1M invested).

Good problem once you’re here if you ask me, heh.

Can businesses be truly passive?

For business passive incomes, it’s not as straightforward, because with business, many things can happen from a operational standpoint eg

  • accidents
  • health issues
  • absences
  • PR nightmare
  • vendor issues
  • product issues
  • etc

Anything can happen, anytime…and often without much warning.

Bloody good managers and stable business

If your offline business or online business is fairly stable and profitable, one of the best ways to make it as passive as possible, other than hiring and retaining good workers or freelancers, is to hire a bloody good manager.

Not a bloodthirsty mad bastard, but a bloody good manager.

A bloody good manager is a person that

  • that doesn’t thrive on creating drama/politics and making things go upside down
  • knows what the business needs and how to get it done in a consistent, sustainable basis
  • communicates clearly
  • fair, transparent and open

Yeah, it’s hard to find such good people, and normally I promote internally rather than bring in “external” managers to manage.

The “most” passive income stream?

40 year old me today believes that the close thing to passive passive income ie hands off as hands off can be is either of these 3:

  1. A well-oiled business with clear processes and management where the business has zero reliance on me, and still grows year on year.
  2. Continuously purchase index funds on a regular basis (where the dividends automatically gets banked into your bank account) (this can be for similar investment vehicles such as fixed deposits). This approach is good for most people.
  3. Trust with wealth management*. This is my ultimate end-funnel where all my investments and money go, and a set % portion is carved out for me and my loved ones to live on; and another % portion is to reinvestment to keep growing and counter inflation.

How to make money

There are so many legit ways to make money in today’s internet era, and this post just skims the surface on all the opportunities that’s available for you.

Can you make money?

Yes, of course you can make more money, whatever your motivations or reasons.

  1. Pay off debts
  2. Save more for big purchases such as weddings, birthdays, travels
  3. Invest to retire early or for your kid’s education

Whatever your reason, you definitely have the power to earn more money than what you’re making today.

I recommend that you build more than 3 streams of income (have only 1 job = 1 income stream is very risky to me), and some of these you can start immediately whereas other income streams may take some time and effort to build but last longer.

Even though surveys and cash-back apps are nice, I tend to avoid them as they cant really scale and they are good for side pocket money, but they dont have much longevity to them.

The goal is to find what you like that suits you to earn more money.

Making More Money Right Now

Okay if you have a short term money need such as need to pay a debt or for a short vacation, you can do some of these to make quick money:

  • Clear unused stuff from your home. Books, shoes, clothing, toys etc that you no longer use or outgrown. Sell these online or by having a garage sale.
  • If you have a car/ride, you can deliver food or passengers using Grab, Uber, Lyft or Doordash (and many other apps). These services all rely on contract drivers and you can work/earn during free pockets of time.
  • Rent out your stuff such as your vehicles (motorcycles, cars) as well as homes (or rooms) like AirBNB.
  • Buy low sell high on merchandise you know and care about (Pokemon cards, anyone?)
  • Negotiate a higher salary if you’re due for a promotion and can push a compelling case.
  • Etc

These are some examples for short term income increase.

If you want to earn something consistent for larger goals such as retiring early and building longer-term passive income streams, then you will need to think, plan and strategize more.

How To Make Money As A Kid


I like it when kids start early to earn and hustle. The earlier they start, the faster they get there.

If you’re a kid, you can consider earning some extras by:

  • Running errands: Pickup something from the store, or return something to someone.
  • Odd jobs such as cleaning a location, taking out trash, laundromat work etc
  • Baby / pet sitting will require a little more skill, patience and keen eye, but parents and pet owners love it when they find someone reliable
  • Washing cars or garages or pavements – speak to your neighbors to see if you can do this weekly for them

These are fairly common work in any country.

I remember getting paid (pittance) by my parents to peel vegetables hahaha, good memories.

If you’re an older kid and savvier, you can provide savvier work such as

  • teaching social media to elder
  • business social media support
  • websites

Making Money as a College Student

College is a good time to earn some extra money because you may have a flexible schedule and learning specialized information.

Some stuff that you can do to earn as a college student includes:

  • Tutoring by helping professors or helping younger students
  • If you’re very organized and resourceful, you can consider doing virtual assistant work online to help small business owners research and analyze data
  • Do deliveries during free time such as packages, documents, food, groceries or even passengers if you have a car
  • Sell your old textbooks to the next cohort/batch of incoming students (applicable when you’re at least end of year 1 of college ahaha)

If you’re already working, negotiate for a higher salary

This can be one of the simplest ways to earn more money if you’re already working and doing a good job, especially when you hadnt asked for a raise before (or in a long time)

….but it can be scary.

When you ask for a raise, you need to know that you have delivered valuable work as this makes it much easier to then sell the idea to your boss for the raise.

The reason is because when you ask for a raise, they will definitely look at your performance and work, which may be scary, but what’s happening is that your boss will assess the quality of your work.

You will get an understanding on how your boss views your work and how he/she thinks.

Do your homework first, bring data to the conversation.

Show how your work has benefited the company – does your work:

  • bring new leads to the company?
  • retain clients longer?
  • save the company X dollars?

Schedule a meeting or call, and ask for the raise. Explain why you deserve it and how investing in you will help the company grow more.

Then wait for 1-2 weeks, depending on how many layers of approval your boss needs to approve the increment.

How to Make an Extra $100 a Day

You’re not alone – we’ve all been there.

I remember when my account was down to the last $100 (scary times). When you need cash immediately, you’re not looking at long term scalable gig – you just need to earn now.

For these quick money, consider:

  • If you own a car, consider driving passengers / delivering food with Uber, Lyft, Grab or Doordash. If your application is smooth and you have all the required documents it can be fairly fast
  • If you own a lawnmower and your neighbours have lawns, offer lawnmowing work. This applies if you have other skills/tools such as powerwasher etc
  • If you own a space, consider renting out a room or more to earn steady recurring cashflow

I Want to Make $500 More a Month

If you’re looking to earn an additional $500 a month, that will require more effort and time.

You can do the stuff we’d covered above too, but you will need to make it a routine (weekly or daily) such as

  • lunch time
  • after dinner
  • weekends

Other work you can do:

  • Creating physical stuff to sell online, such as
    • food – tarts, cakes, bakes
    • jewelry – necklace, ear ring
    • pottery
    • knitted stuff like scarves, head gear etc
  • Developing or teaching an online course based on what you’re good at. Turn your experience and passions into passive income by creating online courses such as teaching someone to play the guitar, take care of betta fishes or knit a scarf – these something for everyone

Investing For Passive Income and Cashflow

Now I love all things entrepreneurship, side hustles and business – they’re my jam and how I started out.

But the next level love and what rocks my boat is when I invest those profits I made from my businesses, and the investments start to pay me passive income aka my money makes just a bit more money for me.

One of the best feeling in the world, for me.

Many people earn then spend. That’s it. When they spend too much, they find a way to spend less to balance out or earn more (most of the time, they decide to spend less the next month).

I prefer to earn > invest > spend from investment returns.

And my goal now is to build streams of investment income that is more than my family’s spending, and then it’s gonna be more fun ehehe. Weirdly, not many people I know invest.

They seem to think that investing = gambling, which isn’t entirely the case.

Index funds and dividend stocks such as REITs can be purchased with as low as $100 monthly (I recommend higher amounts if you can save more so that it’d justify the fees). If you cant spare $100+ a month to invest then start side hustles to earn the extra surplus to invest.

Earn Money to Get Out of Debt

…I dislike debt.

Debt…when done wrongly, will be a money-and-energy-sucking vampire. Earn more and pay out your debt will not only get you back on the path to financial freedom.

Don’t give up.

Wealthy Affiliate Review And Personal Experience


nigelchua family

To begin building and living the passive income lifestyle, unless you already have a lot of cash reserves to invest in dividend stocks, I recommend you to learn how to build Passive Income Businesses on the side, and build up multiple streams of online passive income first without quitting your job.

Quit only when your PIIB income has reached/surpassed your day job, but even that is optional. And that brings me to:

A Review Of Wealthy Affiliate University

I chanced upon Wealthy Affiliate quite some time back, around 2011, and even then I dismissed it because I was heavily reliant on another program then, called Site Build It (SBI) that worked very, very well, going on to becoming a 6-figure lead generation website for my private physiotherapy business in Singapore.

SBI is great for very static, authoritative websites for brick and mortar professional companies in my opinion, but Wealthy Affiliate carries its own weight in the online business and entrepreneurship world.

The program has evolved and grown a lot since then, and you can check it out completely free.

The starter account is $0 forever, with no catch, and no credit card required – so you can take your time to try and then decide if it’s right for you without risking a single cent of your hard earned money (sign up for the free for life Wealthy Affiliate account here)

I’m pretty sure that you would agree that losing money and being scammed or cheated is really a terrible experience – I’ve lost and wasted more than $25,000 during my journey to find out ways to make money online and earn money from home, legitimately, and doing things I love.

Unfortunately for me, I bought many hyped-up products that I came across, been cheated by “gurus” that promised to make me rich. And as an obvious result, I because very cautious, negative and even cynical of the whole idea of making money on the internet.

This is why when I found Wealthy Affiliate, it was actually at the back of my mind that “this is the last one to try” because frankly…

…I’m upset, disappointed and embarrassed to keep showing my wife and family how I keep getting cheated, scammed and lied to of my hard-earned monies.

What Is Wealthy Affiliate?

Whenever I share with someone about WA, I almost always start by saying that it’s not a money-making-scheme, it’s not an easy passive way to becoming rich and neither is it a pyramid scam.

What is Wealthy Affiliate?

Wealthy Affiliate University is first and foremost an online business community as well as a marketing centre.

Please, if you think you will start minting/making/printing money by simply joining WA – think again, OR just walk away – it doesn’t work that way.

This is likely the biggest difference between Wealthy Affiliate and all the other make money online programs – WA doesn’t sell hype and false promises; WA doesn’t promise to make you rich with a few clicks or overnight, and they definitely don’t promise you a shortcut to overnight thousands of dollars.

And I’m glad for that.

They instead promise to teach, train, educate, support and show you how to build your online business. If you are willing to start, learn, refine, grow and run a successful business, please keep reading.

wealthy affiliate

Wealthy Affiliate Pros VS Cons


  • Very Clear Action Plan
  • Different levels of training based on your experience – Beginner and Advanced
  • Video training provided, including Step-by-step Tutorials and Courses
  • 10,000’s of community members
  • 10+ Full, Interactive Classrooms with tasks to complete
  • Live & Interactive Help from WA members, ambassadors, owners and expert members
  • 2 Free Easy-to-Build Websites (you will also learn what to do with these sites)
  • State of the Art Hosting and more importantly to me, strong defenses against hackers/spammers
  • A strict spam free environment (it is not allowed to advertise/sell within WA; great as warning to spammers who want to join WA just to sell something to other members)
  • No up-sells, ever. (except Premium, of course)
  • $0 Basic Level Free Membership. Yes, completely FREE! (sign up for the free for life Wealthy Affiliate account here)


  • Too much information in the beginning that can be overwhelming
  • I notice that it is very easy and addictive to spend time on Live Chat
  • Starter membership is great but you’ll have to upgrade to premium in order to access advanced training
  • No refunds on prepaid payments

A Better Question: Is Wealthy Affiliate For You?

Wealthy Affiliate is not for everyone.

Since 2005, they have been teaching individuals with success how to build an online business, how to grow and expand businesses and how to level up their businesses.

In a nutshell, it teaches you marketing.

BUT if you aren’t open, keen or willing to learn and take action, then the whole idea of making money online isn’t suitable for you.

In that case, who then can really benefit from this program?

Generally, they are individuals or groups/organizations who wants to make an extra income to supplement their salary or support their causes.

These people include:

  • Stay at home moms (SAHMs) who have some free time and are willing to spend it in front of the computer.
  • Students who want to make money to help them pay for their tuition, and some college students has built 6-figure businesses from their dorm, using Wealthy Affiliate.
  • Business owners who want to get more visibility and leads online.
  • Retirees who have free time and want to supplement their pension or who would like to continuously learn, reach out to help others and connect with like-minded people
  • People who are fed up of their 9-to-5 jobs and want to start their own business. Many Wealthy Affiliate members have been able to quit their “day job” to do online marketing full time.

On the flip side, there are also many WA members who have “made it online” but still keep their day job at a much lower stress level, and to purely enjoy the work and connection with people at the workplace – more options and fun.

As you can tell, WA is good choice for everyone who is seeking to earn money from home, BUT you must understand that you will have to invest your time and effort to learn, execute, refine, test and keep taking action in order to make it work.

Wealthy Affiliate will teach you HOW TO BUILD a business – and like any business, online or offline, it requires a solid and consistent investment of time, effort and usually money.

The big difference between starting an online business instead of a traditional brick and mortar business is that you do not need much start-up capital to get started online.

This really hits home because for my physical business (before I sold it and exited), my monthly expenditures are about S$60,000+ per month (ok, my business is bit larger than a small start up), but the difference is staggering, and the online world gives you global reach and global customers, unlike mine which is very limited geographically.

You do not even need any money to join Wealthy Affiliate, the basic free membership gives you all you need to get started: including 2 free hosted websites, training and all the support you need. What Exactly Do You Get Inside? Wealthy Affiliate only costs $49/month. Update: Wealthy Affiliate is now FREE to join!

Wealthy Affiliate has two (2) different membership levels: the basic (free) and the premium.

This is really good because you can join first without spending a single penny, look around, meet and connect with some people, create your own 2 free websites (hosting included) and see how it goes.

Then and only then, if you love it like I do – you will join Premium for even more benefits or you can still stick to building an online business using your free starter membership, with no strings attached.

This alone makes WA so much better than any other make money online programs or opportunities – there is no risk of losing money to something that might not work.

You don’t even need your credit card and still get a free membership.

What you get with your 0$ starter membership

  • Instant access to over 500 training modules
  • 2 free websites along with free hosting
  • Access to 3 classrooms
  • Live support from the owners for the first 7 days and support from many experts inside WA!
  • 30 keyword searches a month
  • Phase 1 of the Boot camp course, teaching you how to build an authority website

What you get with your Premium Wealthy Affiliate membership

  • Live Video Classes
  • Instant access to over 500 training modules
  • Unlimited free websites along with free hosting (great cost savings)
  • Website Backup and Website Security Package (important to me)
  • Access to all 12 classrooms
  • Unlimited Live support from the owners and support from many experts inside WA!
  • Unlimited keyword searches
  • All phases of the Boot camp course
  • 100% higher commissions.
  • Private access to my support.
  • … and much more

To me, the most valuable and important benefits of Wealthy Affiliate University, is really the step-by-step approach to building an online business from the group up, the support from Kyle, Carson and many expert members.

Sadly, most of the other online programs lack the support and the clear action plan (even sadder is that many of them claim to have support but when I email them, I only hear crickets – meaning nothing back. Feels like I’m just a number to those scams).

I have tested dozens of different programs since 2003 and nothing comes close to the quality of WA.

Overall This Training Ranks At A Very Respectable 98%. Most Paid Programs Can’t Even Reach Or Offer That Amount Of Value But Here In WA: You Can Get It Without Spending A Dime.

Training 98% + Support 96% + Value 100% = Overall 98%

Wealthy Affiliate Earning Potential

What is the earning potential with Wealthy Affiliate?

How much money can I really make in a year?

Unfortunately for you, there is no real specifics to this question, because truly it’s open ended.

Some make a few dollars here and there, some make $1,000+ per month, and some reach the six and even seven figures – it depends on your niche, industry and the amount effort and consistency you put in.

The amount of money you can earn is 100% directly related to what you do, how you do it and how consistent you are with your action plans. The ones who are highly successful all have one thing in common:

Follow the training to the dot and keep taking massive consistent action.

Yes, learning how to do something is super but you need to apply the knowledge and actually build the online business to actually start earning – the knowledge is a good start, but how many of us know that action is what brings home the bacon and get things done.

Go through the Wealthy Affiliate training and build your online business the way WA teaches you and don’t deviate or get distracted, and I don’t see why you can’t make $12,000 your first year (that’s $1,000 per month in extra pocket money), and double that amount every year.

Sadly, why most beginner internet marketers fail online is because they either:

  • do not follow an action plan
  • get distracted and deviated by the next shiny program/product that promises $$$$ overnight
  • do not take enough action
  • do not take enough action consistently and patiently

Wealthy Affiliate will help you with all of the above: Provide you with a realistic plan of action, courses that you need to follow and tasks you need to complete. Stay focused and you will be successful.

Make Money Doing What You Love

Even though Wealthy Affiliate will teach you different marketing strategies that are very helpful for any kind of online business, they do focus and concentrate much on affiliate marketing.

Affiliate Marketing means that you get paid a commission whenever someone buys a product that you recommend, and most of the time, it’s someone else’ product.

Most companies offer affiliate programs (think Amazon, eBay, Target, Airlines companies, credit card companies, etc.).

As more and more people start to buy things online instead of going to traditional stores (for obvious reasons) it’s makes sense to get involved and claim your share of these online sales.

What I always liked about Wealthy Affiliate is that they encourage you to do what you love – this makes running and growing a business a lot more fun and profitable.
wealthy affiliate
For example, say you’re like me, and you like natural health supplements (or gardening or playing games) and you make a website on natural health supplements that help people make a purchasing decision.

If you like gardening, you can start a website that talks about gardening tools, sheds, DIY, how to make your garden better.

On these websites, you can tell people about all those super products and tell them where they can buy those products (be it from Amazon, Target etc), and whenever these people buy the products through your link, you get a commission (affiliate marketing in a nutshell).

You don’t have to deal with inventory, shipping, payments, customer service – all you do is to connect people to find the products they want/need and you get rewarded by the merchant for it who loves you because you find them customers at a paid-for-performance basis – EVERYONE WINS!

This is single handedly my favorite way of business offline and online.

Ok, please don’t read the words above and start saying that it’s too difficult, or too foreign, or what – Wealthy Affiliate WILL PROVIDE you step by step details that you need to know to do all of this properly.

Again, its a follow the step-by-step training and ask questions whenever you’re unsure – the WA community is always there to help.

Wealthy Affiliate Keeps Me (And You) Updated

Earlier I mentioned that I run a private physiotherapy practice in Singapore since 2008, and one of the most important things that specialist physiotherapists needs to do is to keep updated, and this process is called “Continuous Professional Development (CPD)” and “Evidence-Based Practice (EBP)”.

Likewise, a big benefit of Wealthy Affiliate University is that they stay updated and keep refining and growing. You see, the online world changes very, very fast.

Kyle and Carson are very good and talented at keeping up with these updates and providing the most recent news, and updated strategies that work. Research any successful millionaire/billionaire entrepreneurs and you will find that they constantly learn new things.

They attend seminars, hire coaches, read books, meet experts in their field – they stay updated and learn something new every single day.

Every time I login to my Wealthy Affiliate account, I learn something new.

Perhaps this will be the reason I am still a member and still excited every time I log into my account.


Wealthy Affiliate Community And Support

Wealthy Affiliate community is something that I really respect and appreciate, and also something other programs fail to provide.

If you find yourself struggling with anything, most of the time many members who are live will be able to help you instantly in the WA Live Chat and even through your sharing in WA.

What I like even more is that people share their experiences, ideas and breakthroughs – this is invaluable, and is similar to being in a mastermind group where you can listen to these experiences to teach and motivate you, you can learn from others’ mistakes as well as discuss and brainstorm with others.

Whenever I need an opinion or input on a challenge or new website or article I am working on, Wealthy Affiliate members are always there to share their opinions, and very fast.

Even when I first joined, the way the community welcomed me – this is out of the world – the whole feel of such an active community is truly amazing and Wealth Affiliate is by far the only place where I have experienced this.

There are many, many online forums and programs out that that discusses the topic of making money online and online businesses, but you may have personally experienced or seen when someone ask a seemingly “simple newbie” question, they may get shot/flamed with:

  • hey, that question has been asked many times before, google it
  • you’re ______
  • and many more

You will not get this kinds of replies on WA.

Wealthy Affiliate is a learning center so they pride themselves on there are no stupid questions, and that every question is important and people will try to answer it as well and thorough as they can.

BUT of course if you do not feel comfortable asking a question (really, don’t be shy, just ask – and be amazed by their thoughtfulness and hospitality) instead you could also simply look through the resources and questions other people asked – I can almost guarantee you will find your answer within minutes.

Don’t Need To Believe Me, See The Results Of WA Members

Hundreds of Wealthy Affiliate members are sharing their success stories with the WA community. I really enjoy reading these stories as they are very powerful and emotional for me at times.

Here are just a few examples of Wealthy Affiliate success stories:
Wealthy Affiliate Success Testimonials

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Wealthy Affiliate

Here are the most frequently asked questions about Wealthy Affiliate and their answers, and if you’ve got a question please don’t be shy or afraid to ask using the comment form below and I’ll add it to the FAQ.

Q: I am not very technical/tech-savvy and I’ve never built a website. Can I still use Wealthy Affiliate?

A: Of course! One of the greatest things about Wealthy Affiliate is the fact that it’s built with people like yourself.

Every single step of online business building is explained with specifics and details, as well as with both text and video tutorials.

This training makes Wealthy Affiliate very easy to use even for complete beginners.

Q: Do I have to promote Wealthy Affiliate to Make Money?

A: Nope, you don’t.

And though Wealthy Affiliate does have an amazing affiliate program but you don’t need to to promote it to make money. I do have some Wealthy Affiliate commissions, but it’s not the bulk or my main online commission incomes.

Instead, WA teaches you how to setup a real and profitable online business where you can market/sell any service or products that you like or can find.

The WA affiliate program can be taken as optional program if you love WA, but WA doesn’t force you to push friends and family into being your clients or downline, rest assured.

Q: I don’t have any products to sell. How can Wealthy Affiliate help me?

A: So Wealthy Affiliate teaches you how to build on online business, and you can choose the route of selling your own products and services OR you can opt to sell other people’s services and products, and this is known as affiliate marketing.

You can partner with giants such as Lazada, Amazon, Target and many other companies to earn commissions on products that they already have/sell.

Q: Ok, so Wealthy Affiliate is Free to join BUT what’s the catch?

A: Yup, it’s fair to be cautious and skeptical when you’re offered/given something valuable for free.

So the catch when it comes to Wealthy Affiliate is that the free membership is a basic membership program that gives you access to a limited part of WA, and in order to get more advanced training, you will have to upgrade to premium membership – that’s the catch.

I do recommend you start with the free membership program so that you can have a feel of this WA platform, connect with other WA users, start up to 2 free hosted websites and then decide if you wanna stay basic/free member or upgrade to premium.

Free membership is enough to start an online business.

Q: What if I build my websites with WA and then decide to leave, will I lose my websites?

A: Nope – you get to keep your websites for as long as you want.

Yes, this is a good question and a common fear BECAUSE many online programs don’t allow you to take your website with you if you decide to leave them.

Wealthy Affiliate will never take your website away from you even if you cancel your membership.

In fact, you will be given a full 30 days after cancellation to transfer your websites to whichever webhost you prefer

Q: How long would it take to start making money online

A: We all ask this question, and unfortunately there is no real answer to it because truly there are so many variables that it’s very very difficult to estimate the timeline of success.

Much of it depends on your commitment/work ethics, you taking consistent massive action, the industry (or niche) your business is in, the amount of effort you’re willing to put in as well as many other factors.

I have seen people start making money with their online business in their first week, I have seen many others who took 6 to 18 months to see their first sale.

Q: Why is Wealthy Affiliate not available in my country?

A:Wealthy Affiliate Premium is available to everyone in every country. This being said, Wealthy Affiliate Free Membership is not available to 4 countries at the moment: India, Nigeria, Philippines and Pakistan.

I’m sorry I do not have the details why and how this decision was made, but if you live in one of these 4 countries you can still join WA premium membership anytime.

So generally, you can access, have membership and be part of Wealthy Affiliate community if you live/reside/work in: Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, China, Japan, Korea, United States of America (USA), United Kingdom (UK), Ireland, Scotland, European countries like Italy, Greece, Spain, Portugal – as long as you’re not from/living in the top mentioned 4 blacklisted countries, you can be part of Wealthy Affiliate.

Q: Does Wealthy Affiliate work in Canada?

A: Yes, definitely.

In fact, it works in every country (I’m in Singapore, and works well in Singapore and Asia too).

Wealthy Affiliate is a learning platform teaching you how to build an online business, and as long as you have access to internet you can start building your own business.

Q: How do I know Wealthy Affiliate is not a scam?

A: Yes, much of the online business and internet marketing world has earned itself quite a bad, negative and scammy reputation – I was scammed and cheated many times too =(

This happens because of conments / scammers who cheat people by promising to reveal a secret shortcut/technique/whatever lies to earns thousands and millions of dollars for a simple fee of $47, $97, $197, $1497 or more.

As I’ve shared in my blogs and teachings, there is no quick way to riches.

What makes WA very strong is because of their free starter membership program which you can access limited part of WA training but it’s definitely more than enough to show you the high quality value you will get inside, without risking a single cent of your hard-earned money.

The simple fact of that people can try for free and people staying for 5+ years as members eliminates any possibility of Wealthy Affiliate being a scam.

Q: I am trying to create a starter account on Wealthy Affiliate but it’s telling me I already have one.

Hmm – there could be several reasons for this error.

  1. Did you create an account with them but had forgotten?
  2. Someone may have created an account using your email?
  3. Someone may have created an account using a computer in your house/IP, leading to Wealthy Affiliate thinking its from the same IP hence duplicate

Please contact WA support as they’d be the best people to ask for this.

Wealthy Affiliate Negative Reviews And Complaints

Ok, if you spend much time researching Wealthy Affiliate, you possibly will find that there is very little to no bad/negative reviews about WA online.

Interestingly, if you think about it, whenever any customers are unhappy, where is the place they go to complain and rant? Yup, online. This is true for any industry and most definitely for online training programs.

To date, more than 100,000 people have joined Wealthy Affiliate since 2005, and from the lack of rants and complaints about WA, it is fairly safe to say that most of them are quite happy with WA and what WA has to offer.

This is why it’s very hard to impossible to find any bad rants, reviews or press about WA online.

In fact, Wealthy Affiliate members are openly welcomed to review the program, unlike MLM companies that forces MLM members to sign non-disclosure and nothing MLM is allowed to go online…meaning that these unhappy MLM people are legally disallowed to publicly review the MLM company and expose their bad practices.

This being said, I actually manage to find some complaints about WA:

  • very detailed + informative can lead to information overload/overwhelm
  • basic members only get 7 days of live support
  • members being too preoccupied with WA rankings
  • some countries cannot enjoy the free starter membership program

These being said, are not large deal-breaking issues and to me, the focus is “Does WA does what it said it’d do? The success stories speak for themselves” – and that’s all that matters to me.

I also disclose that I will receive a small affiliate commission if someone decides to join Wealthy Affiliate premium using my affiliate link. There is no monetary compensation for basic membership.

I often share with people that they are free to join WA without using my link but they are encouraged to use my link if they like and benefited from my review and the effort that I put into explaining what WA is and does.

If someone for some reason don’t think I deserve being compensated, they can join directly through WA main site without going through my links.

See You Inside Wealthy Affiliate

I’m wrapping up this Wealthy Affiliate Review, and I realize it’s a pretty long article – I think I’m really very passionate and excited about WA. I would like to invite you to check out Wealthy Affiliate for yourself, the basic membership program is 100% free and no credit card needed, so you’ve got nothing to lose.

Once you’re in, don’t forget to swing by my Wealthy Affiliate profile and say hi ok.

Feel free to comment below, and I’d love to hear from you.