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Old 03-07-2011, 05:51 PM   #21
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I started out on my own with 1099 income but now I am on salary with a small consulting company. There are pros and cons to both ways. Tax wise, 1099 was a lot better. As LOL! said, I was able to put away more in my solo 401k than I am now which is max $22k 401k through the company.

I taught as an adjunct college professor. It is almost ridiculous how little you make for the time invested. Preparing lectures and grading papers takes a lot of time. In this area (North East), some people do it because adjuncts can qualify for health care benefits if they teach enough classes. As youbet said teaching high school is very different. You need a teaching certificate and jobs are now hard to come by. I was told it is easier to get a job in the "rougher" high schools but you will have to call 911 a couple of times per day (no exaggeration!).
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Old 03-07-2011, 06:13 PM   #22
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JiMOh, you mentioned you have ideas for farm income. I have about 40 acres total and about 25 that is "prime farmland" whatever that means. I rent out the 25 acres to a farmer for row crops. He has put in corn, oats, beans and winter wheat. The other 15 acres are woods, meadows and my yard. In this area, there are a lot of apple farms. I have a lot of wild concord grape vines but no "wine grapes". However, there is a winery not too far from here.

I don't know what I don't know about farming. Is there a way to start some of your plans without a big investment or do you have to commit in a big way? I looked into a berry farm (raspberries, strawberries) and woody ornamental plants. I was trying to find some farm businesses where scale doesn't matter so much (like row crops).
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Old 03-08-2011, 06:01 AM   #23
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JiMOh, you mentioned you have ideas for farm income. I have about 40 acres total and about 25 that is "prime farmland" whatever that means. I rent out the 25 acres to a farmer for row crops. He has put in corn, oats, beans and winter wheat. The other 15 acres are woods, meadows and my yard. In this area, there are a lot of apple farms. I have a lot of wild concord grape vines but no "wine grapes". However, there is a winery not too far from here.

I don't know what I don't know about farming. Is there a way to start some of your plans without a big investment or do you have to commit in a big way? I looked into a berry farm (raspberries, strawberries) and woody ornamental plants. I was trying to find some farm businesses where scale doesn't matter so much (like row crops).
The ideas my friend and I discussed.

He was thinking of rehabbing the old farm house on his land and renting it out for corporate retreats. I did not think the demand or markup was there to make money.

We discussed doing haunted hay rides (he has trails which go in and out of woods). Low overhead, seasonal work.

We discussed having paintball tournaments on the land (his son does this at other places and pays to do it).

I have experience as a soccer coach and told him renting the land to soccer clubs would very (VERY!) profitable. Only investment needed was to grade the 10-20 acres to be flat (it is flat, just not flat enough). It was not clear to me from looking how many fields would fit in the two clearings he showed me. One of the clearings was shared with his brother, so sharing that money would be sticky as well.

I would suggest to you to look into something like the soccer fields- if a farmer is already using the land, it must be "flat" to some extent. For ONE weekend tournment, the clubs here pay upwards of 20k for soccer fields (30 fields total for 2 days, each field is about 1/2 acre to 1 1/2 acres depending on age of kids using field).

If club A uses field weekend 1
then club B uses field weekend 2
then Lacrosse uses field weekend 3

I could come up with a business model where fields are used 6 times per year and generate between 10-60k annually. That is just on land usage. Some places charge for parking, so that could be additional revenue too. Plus concessions during sport event- more revenue.

Most soccer clubs are required to carry insurance, and there is a liability issue, so look into that.
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Old 03-08-2011, 06:06 AM   #24
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Unless you're talking about teaching at the post secondary level, there are a lot of barriers to entering the teaching profession. The main one, of course, is getting a teaching certificate which requires taking several courses and doing student teaching. Rumors of school districts snapping up anyone with a 4 year degree and sponsoring them for a provisional certificate are greatly exaggerated. More likely, you'd be hired as a minimum wage laborer to help move around the mountains of resumes they have from highly qualified certified teachers looking for the same job you are! The competition is fierce.

Perhaps you have the necessary credentials in place and connections to get yourself hired. But generally, for the average citizen, teaching K - 12 is hard to get started in and rarely happens for older job seekers.

OP mentioned past experience teaching college courses already on his resume, That's a more likely possibility. Here in the Chicago area, pay levels for adjunct faculty aren't impressive and the work frequently involves teaching evenings or weekends, but it would have to be better than flipping burgers or other menial work.
I have taught at corporate level for 7 years, and now write training material while awaiting a career change (have a few more tests to pass).

I looked into teaching HS math. I have an engineering degree and this is what I was told by Xavier University... My teaching experience exempts me from any student teaching requirement... my engineering degree has had me take more calculus and statistics than any HS math teacher would ever dream to take. All I needed for my masters was to take the curriculum design classes (which I do for a living now, but have no formal training in).

That is Plan B if my career change does not pan out.

Two teachers have told me to get hired, no masters degree is needed, I just need to commit to getting masters degree in X years or start degree within Y years (one teacher started her masters 10 years ago and has not followed through on it, but she teaches HS in a really small district out in middle of no where).
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:03 AM   #25
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OP mentioned past experience teaching college courses already on his resume, That's a more likely possibility. Here in the Chicago area, pay levels for adjunct faculty aren't impressive and the work frequently involves teaching evenings or weekends, but it would have to be better than flipping burgers or other menial work.
That's the case around here too. I looked into teaching criminal justice/computer forensics at a two-year school near here but the pay scale was barely better than burger flipping.
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Old 03-08-2011, 06:04 PM   #26
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jIMHo, thanks for land use ideas. The soccer field is a good idea, I am just a bit too late. Someone up the road is trying to put in a big soccer field complex. Surprisingly, the town and neighbors have been fighting this tooth and nail. I think it will eventually go in but they have been trying to get a permit for over 2 years. I will check out the paintball idea by calling some clubs.
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Old 03-09-2011, 06:06 AM   #27
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jIMHo, thanks for land use ideas. The soccer field is a good idea, I am just a bit too late. Someone up the road is trying to put in a big soccer field complex. Surprisingly, the town and neighbors have been fighting this tooth and nail. I think it will eventually go in but they have been trying to get a permit for over 2 years. I will check out the paintball idea by calling some clubs.
The soccer field idea will "work" because of how fields get used.

Most clubs build complexes for practices. Think 50 teams using fields Mon-Fri for a 90 minute practice. Easy to schedule. Teams do not need as much space to practice, 1/2 field works, muddy areas (not suitable for games work). Don't compete with this, if fields exist, clubs will contact you if they want to use the space.

On weekends some tournaments host 400-500 teams (which each play 3-4 games). Think teams coming in from 50-500 miles away to play games. Those games are played every minute of daylight (so 7am-7pm where I live). If the fields had lights, they would host another 40-70 teams and play Friday night too.

There is NEVER enough field space for tournament games. I have ran tournaments, and helped run them, and coached in them. If there is a complex available, it is considered.

Focus on this market. I emailed you some links. Those links will show you tournaments in area. Most clubs are limited to the teams they can accept based on field space. More field space=more teams accepted=more money for clubs (tournaments are fund raisers).

The other advantage to using fields for tournaments only is the fields only get used 3-6 times per year (all weekend). They will get torn up those 6 weekends, but can grow back 4-6 weeks later.

And many times 3-4 clubs share the same community, the complex you see being built might be for one of those clubs.

The demand is there, and once word is out on the field space, Lacrosse clubs will be looking to rent it too.
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Old 03-09-2011, 03:39 PM   #28
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I was contemplating learning to be a travel agent....
Isn't this a dying profession?

Ha
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Old 03-09-2011, 03:44 PM   #29
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Isn't this a dying profession?

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Nope, it's on the move ...
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Old 03-09-2011, 10:37 PM   #30
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I am concerned that travel agent does seem to be dying as a profession, but there seem to be specialty pockets where there may still be opportunities....anyway I am not looking for a long term career nor am I counting on the income, just something to do on the side a bit that I enjoy and might make a little fun money with...
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Old 03-12-2011, 07:40 PM   #31
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If I were you, I would cut expenses dramatically and retire. You are fortunate that you were able to reinvent yourself but obviously you are tired of it and who wouldn't be after 30 yrs in a corporate job?
I am 46, doing same thing for 20yrs, and getting ready for something different next yr. I earn very good money but bank a large % of it and can/have been living off substantially less than what I earn. I only mention this because you refer to the 200k as a barometer and that's where you can get stuck. I'd be more conerned with my health and the value of time verus how much money I have for gifts. It's your decision but perhaps start worrying about yourself and what's important-a luxury vehicle and gifts for the grand kids is not.
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Old 03-12-2011, 08:17 PM   #32
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Would staying in your current position but going part-time being selective on your projects be an option? Selecting only "fun" and challenging to you making the most of your time.
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