How I Spend My $25,000 Monthly Income

Monthly Spending Breakdown for my $25,000 A Month Income. Making Money is one thing but managing and how I spend my money is another. I use the Profit First Business Model, and frugal personal finance strategies for my income and my business.

None of this was an overnight success. This took me nearly a decade to achieve and to learn not only how to make money but manage my spending, build my online businesses and diversify my income streams. I also had to become very educated about taxes; especially YouTube taxes and what that means as a Full-time YouTuber and Creator.

How I Spend My $25,000 a Month Income
00:00 — No Overnight Success
01:48 — The 4 Bank Accounts
04:42 — Cost of Living
13:01 — Retirement & Investing
15:30 — Business Expenses
19:51 — Taxes
22:16 — How I Make My Money

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Roberto Blake is a Creative Entrepreneur, Keynote Speaker, and YouTube Certified Educator. He is the founder of Awesome Creator Academy and host of the Create Something Awesome Today Podcast.

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=================== text video ====================

— A lot of people talk
about making money online.

It’s something I do quite
a bit on this channel

since we talk about the creator economy,

how to be a full-time content creator

and start your own small business,

but what a lot of people don’t do

is they don’t break down how
they’re spending their money

and how they’re investing in longterm

and what the actual cost of
doing business is for them.

Sometimes you do have to
spend money to make money

especially if you like nice camera gear.

So today I’m gonna be breaking down

how I spend my $25,000 a month income.

I’m gonna be talking to you

about the profit first business model

and also a little bit
about taxes and retirement.

None of this is financial advice

but I do feel that

if people were more
transparent about money

and it wasn’t this big shameful taboo

or everyone didn’t assume
you’re bragging about it,

then we could just have
more honest conversations

that would help a lot of people

become more financially literate

and just better at managing their money.

This is also not an income

that I just magically earned overnight.

I’m not a viral YouTube content creator.

This is something that took me
a lot of years of hard work,

basically a decade of discipline.

I’m 37 years old

so in reality,

I’ve actually been playing
catch up for a number of years

because in my twenties,

I was very low income

and in a lot of debt due to my family

just having a lot of medical bills,

being in a single-parent home,

there’s just a lot of things

that ultimately I feel where
maybe I was disadvantaged

for a very long time

and then I’ve spent my
thirties hustling hard

and kind of putting myself in the place

that I feel I’m supposed to be.

Now there’s a couple of
things you need to know

going into this.

One of the things I’m
going to teach you about

is something called profit first

and I’m gonna break that down for you

because then my expenses
will make sense to you.

So with profit first,

I am paying myself first,

every time that I make money,

I take 10% of that

and that goes into my savings account.

There are four main bank
accounts that I have,

and that’s actually something
really important this video

that I haven’t seen in all these,

you know, how much
money do I spend videos,

the breakdown of the bank accounts.

So I have a savings account

and I pay myself 10% of
all income there first,

that way I know that, you know,

after all of my hard work
that I have something

that is there to show for it,

it also is a good way to
build an emergency fund.

Next, I take 15% of all of the money

that ever comes in

and I put it into account

that’s just for my taxes.

This means that I know
that I have the money

to make those quarterly tax payments.

If you making the quarterly
tax payments on your business,

if you’re a small business owner,

then that means that
you can avoid, you know,

interest in any penalties

by just waiting longer than necessary

and so you can do that any way you want.

Some people pay quarterly.

Some people pay yearly,

either of those is fine.

Just talk to an accountant.

I have bookkeepers and accountants.

That’s part of the expenses we’ll get to,

but I set up this account
just for my taxes.

So then we have my cost of living.

I put 35% of my money
into this most of the time

and this is something

that just helps me put all
of my bills on auto-pay

and do anything I need
to on a regular basis.

This is actually separate
from my business bank account,

because for tax reasons,

you want to make sure
that you’re separating

your personal finances from
your business finances.

This is something that a lot of people

who are new to making money online,

whether they do videos on YouTube,

they don’t talk about

and a lot of them don’t understand it

but this is actually really important.

So you want that clear separations.

What’s called the corporate veil.

You want to separate
your personal finances

from your business finances.

You don’t wanna commingle those

and then when it comes
to my business expenses,

I’m spending 40% of my
income back into my business.

Believe it or not once upon a time,

it used to be a lot more of
a percentage of my income

that I was spending back into my business

to grow it, to scale it.

You know, you don’t need as much money

to start a small business
or start a YouTube channel

or start doing something
creative these days,

it’s actually really reasonable to do.

Most people can do it with the
beginnings of a smartphone,

but to make better
quality stuff over time,

you end up having to invest
in things like camera gear,

microphones and good lighting,

faster laptop to edit on.

Those things are very real

when you’re building your business

or you’re trying to become
a full-time content creator.

So I put 40% back into the business

and in my case,

one things that made my life better

was hiring people.

Hiring people part-time
and remotely to help me

and also hiring my family
to be able to help me

within my business.

I’ve hired both of my sisters.

They help me part-time with the business

and it’s been a massive
upgrade in my personal life

and in my mental health.

So let’s get down to some
of my actual spending.

I live in the state of Georgia

so mileage may vary on this one,

but when it comes to rent,

I rent a house.

My younger siblings are my housemates

and I charge them $0 in rent

and I pay 25 50 in rent
every single month.

This might sound extravagant

but giving the needs of our setup

and just giving everybody their space.

It works out

and so I could save a lot of
money if I charge them rent

but I want to give them every
advantage and opportunity

to build themselves up as young people.

So the $0 rent,

I pay the whole 25 50.

This might change since
I’m actually looking

at investing in real estate

and being a first-time homeowner

so when I decided to go into a mortgage,

I’m gonna look for
something that is comparable

to what I’m paying now

but I will actually start to get equity

and build up net worth for the future,

instead of that going to somebody else

and making them rich.

For my car note,

I have a 2018 Nissan Sentra.

As of the making this video

I’m actually probably getting ready

to go into a new car
note and trade in my car

which I currently again, pay $0 a month on

since it’s paid off

and I’m going to get a 2021

and the reason I’m going
to get a 2021 Nissan Sentra

is because I will now be in a new

warranty, the warranty on my current car,

it’s pretty much expired

so I’ll be safer

and I will have less to worry about

if I’m just in a new car

even though it means paying a car note,

I’ll be in a 2021

and it will be a lot safer.

I’ll be starting with zero mileage

and probably get an
extended five-year warranty.

My other car is also paid off.

It’s a 2016 Nissan.

I’ve given that to my brother

and so that’s gonna be his car

and again, also $0 on that

does mean that I pay more
in car insurance though,

because of having more than one vehicle

and having a younger inexperienced driver

drives up your insurance costs

so any of the parents out there,

you know exactly what I’m talking about.

So again, just keep that in mind.

Also, my lifestyle and costs

are gonna be probably
different than yours.

I’m 37 years old.

I didn’t really make a lot
of money in my twenties

so I’ve spent my thirties hustling

to kind of get where I
feel I’m supposed to be

by now in life

and set up for the future

and for when I have a family of my own

so just kind of keep some of this in mind,

take it with a grain of salt.

This is not something you have to feel

like you have to be hitting these numbers

or living this lifestyle.

It’s not the real point of this video,

but it does give you
some lessons and insights

into managing and spending
money as you make it,

which is something people don’t teach you

because I don’t think enough people

really understand it themselves

and so this is not financial advice,

but maybe it’ll help you.

I don’t really drive a lot

aside from to go to a photo shoots

and, you know, just business
meetings and stuff like that.

So I don’t spend a lot of gas

when I don’t have to

maybe $160 a month.

I put it on a Exxon Mobil gas card,

which I pay off the balance up

pretty much at the end of every month.

I do that for the cash back rewards.

Just, I do a lot of cash back rewards.

It’s free money.

So I know Dave Ramsey,
doesn’t like credit cards.

He’s great on financial advice.

I just, I like getting the cash back

so sometimes I’ll just
use my credit cards,

pay down the balance and be done with it.

It’s actually right now I
have zero credit card debt,

something I work very hard at.

Maybe I’ll talk about something
like that in the future

as far as business credit

but zero credit card debt is a big deal.

There’s nothing wrong with
having a little bit of it.

If you have to carry it for your business

or put it on a business credit card

or expense things, travel

but I just try to keep as close

to being debt-free as possible,

especially knowing that

I’m gonna wanna go into a mortgage

and become a home buyer.

Car insurance on both cars

comes out to about 650 a month.

That’s because when you have
young unexperienced drivers

on your insurance,

again, parents know
what I’m talking about,

that cost goes up.

So I’m paying about 650 a month
in terms of car insurance.

Internet is 240, with Xfinity.

I have a business package
for all the live streaming

that I do.

I have to get unlimited.

I used to have to pay exuberant fees.

Sometimes if I went over my data cap,

I don’t feel like data caps should exist.

Maybe that’ll be a rant at some point

but 240 on the internet
across all the devices.

I do have an apple watch.

I do have an iPad pro

and I do have, you know,
my android and iPhones.

So with that,

and then the fact that my
siblings are on my phone plan,

I paid 280 a month for
all of our cell phones

and my plan

and so you, again, if
you’re in a household,

your expenses will probably
be significantly higher

than somebody that is completely single

and is not responsible for
any other human beings.

So again, your mileage may vary,

and this might be a really good lesson

for those of you who might be younger

as to what you have to look forward to

as you get older and take
on more responsibility.

Now insurance when it comes to
things like health insurance,

renter’s insurance, business insurance,

all of that kind of stuff,

like when it comes down
to the insurance policies,

I have to pay

that comes out to about $900 a month.

This will largely depend on your needs

in terms of healthcare, vision, dental

but I encourage people
to look at getting things

like insurance for any of their property,

whether it’s homeowners or rental

or especially if you
have gear and equipment,

make sure you’re getting
insurance for that.

There are a lot of
different options out there,

and you could look into
things like policy genius

to get good rates.

They’re not a sponsor,
at least not yet anyway

and so there’s just a lot of
different things out there.

Try and find a good deal,

but also don’t try to pinch pennies

’cause what you want is
to be able to know that

if something gets lost, damaged or stolen,

that is essential to you
or very meaningful to you,

that it can be easily placed

so that you can just
move on with your life

and not dwell on too much.

In terms of groceries and essentials,

again, with a household

it’s about 1100 every month,

also depends on what your
nutrition and health needs are.

Whether people, you know are vegan,

what they can eat,

whether people have other
things like diabetes,

you just have to look at eating healthy,

if you can and eating clean

and I think it’s okay to
spend more money on this.

I know some people like to be very cheap

when it comes to this,

but you know,

when it comes to fitness
and health and nutrition,

when you try to be cheap,

it becomes expensive in healthcare costs.

So there’s that.

Also if you have pets, you know,

that those things are
added into that cost.

So Tugboat and Rio eat very
well and a very healthy too

and so they’re kind of
added into that expense.

Now, something I do that
a lot of people don’t

is I get myself a personal allowance.

This is guilt free money
that I can spend on

whatever I want

and this also helps me balance frugal

without denying myself.

So I give myself currently

a 200 and dollar a week allowance.

This might sound extravagant

but it’s really not.

It’s basically about 800 to
a thousand dollars a month

that I can spend guilt-free
and whatever I want.

So for me, that might be sushi

or it might be, you know, entertainment,

might be video games,

it might be collectibles.

You guys see that I’m a
big fan of like video games

and anime and nostalgic things.

I also sometimes just like,

you know, doing little things for myself

that cost money

and so giving myself a
reasonable allowance like this

just means that I don’t feel deprived

after all of my hard work

and then finally,

overall utilities average

aside from obviously by side
with phone and internet costs,

the overall utilities are
about five to $600 a month,

which I think is reasonable.

You can save money as you convert

to more eco-friendly things

and power saving,

and also depends on how well
your house is insulated,

but, you know,

you can try and do whatever you
want to keep utilities down.

I just don’t stress over
it too much if possible,

you know, I’d rather just
everybody be comfortable.

Now when it comes to that
money that goes into,

you know, my cost of living,

you just have to remember
that include my retirement

and my investing in that

and so what I’m setting aside

in terms of a lot of that currently,

which is not what I was doing before,

it’s close to about a $2,500 a month

that goes into that.

A lot of that is passive.

I have things that go
directly into my SEP IRA

and also I have a traditional IRA.

I have a Roth IRA

but with me,

I have to put it into my traditional IRA

and then talk to my accountant
about the backdoor stuff.

That’s all more complicated
than you need to worry about.

The point is out of the year,

I’d put, you know 6,000

into a more or less
traditional IRA account

but I have a SEP IRA as
a small business owner

that allows me to make
much larger contributions

because I’m both an
employee and an employer.

So I can make the employer
contributions to my retirement

and that’s significantly larger.

In my case, I, you know,
invest in those accounts

mostly through Merrill.

So it’s, you know, it’s
just with my regular bank.

So traditional bank versus one
of the fancy online options,

nothing wrong with any of those.

Another interesting thing I do

is I have an Acorns account for investing

to do passive investing into
S and P 500 index funds.

The way I set it up is not
only does it do roundups

whenever I spend money

so basically whenever I buy camera gear,

I do anything or I go grocery shopping,

the, you know, leftover change

if it’s like a buck 50,

the other 50 cents goes into this.

It gets invested for me,

but I have the three X multiplier

so if I, you know, have 50 cents

I actually charged me a buck 50

and an invested for me in the market.

So every time I spend money,

I’m also investing in my future

and also I have a recurring
daily withdraws set up

to actually invest for me.

One of these goes into an IRA account

and the other goes into a regular account.

In my case,

I’m investing daily $65 a day

into index funds

so I have a very safe, stable, longterm,

you know, hedge for the future

in terms of investing and retirement

so the main account, if I need to do,

I can also tap that as an emergency fund

and then obviously the IRA

is, you know, well into
the future for retirement.

In terms of my business expenses,

I spend $6,000 a month
between my part-time team

and my freelancers.

I’m not gonna get into each individual

team members compensation,

that’s their personal information

and you don’t really need to know that.

I know everyone loves to know

what employers are paying their people

but it’s really more a matter

of whether people want to
personally put that out there

and that’s how you respect
people’s boundaries.

The overall expenses in my business

average now about between a 100,000

to $140,000 a year in
overall business expenses.

Now with making a $25,000 a month income,

at least that’s what I
based it off of from 2020

for what we submitted for my tax filings

with my accountants,

I use for my bookkeeping, I use Bench,

and then they recommended
me to my personal CPA.

So I have a certified
public accountant team

that actually handles the back
end of these finances for me.

So what I’m doing is
I am heavily investing

back into my business.

Hiring a team has been
very beneficial to me

in terms of getting back my mental health

and my personal life.

So that’s actually really strong for me

and so I don’t mind
spending on that at all.

In terms of the core
software and services,

it actually takes to run my business.

Something I might break down
by itself in another video

’cause I feel like this
part could be a video,

it’s about roughly $1,500 a
month in software and services

that are set up on
recurring subscriptions.

A lot of that is the
fact that for my team,

I actually pay for each
individual team members,

Adobe creative cloud software.

So I’m paying for a
couple of Adobe licenses

on top of my own Adobe license

and so as you can imagine, that adds up.

There’s also all of the
stock photo resources.

We use story blocks,
epidemic sound, Adobe stock,

a couple of other ones out there.

We have some stuff for another channel

that we do that we get through Musicbed.

There’s just a lot of built in expenses.

Like I said, I’ll probably
make another video about it

and so that’s the subscription stuff,

$1,500 a month for that.

I have a $20,000 a year hardware budget.

This is something

that is actually very
important to me personally,

because of some of the other things I do

besides what you see on YouTube

is I do crazy projects like this

in terms of the photography side,

we’re also building out
a gear YouTube channel

covering photography, audio
lighting, video, hardware,

software, all of it.

So there are a lot of different projects

running in the background
in terms of the hardware,

the stuff with the podcast coming back,

camera gear adds up as an expensive.

Me I’ve always wanted to have a full

and complete photography setup.

It’s something that’s
been very important to me

and that I’m very passionate about

and if you’ve seen what I’ve
been doing with my photography,

you can tell.

So for me, that hardware budget

might sound extravagant to most people

unless or until you look at

what I’m actually doing with it and why.

There’s some shots

that only things like
super telephoto lenses

that look like bazookas
can actually accomplish.

It’s also possible that in the future

for a lot of the gear that
you know, I upgrade from

instead of selling it,

we might actually just take
my gear that I’m not using

and we might actually rent it out.

Something we’re looking into.

There’s also travel

when there’s not an
illness ravaging the world,

when that’s not happening,

I travel for public speaking

and not every event pays you for that

or maybe not even always upfront.

So we have a 10 to
$20,000 budget for travel.

I also like to do some local projects

and I’m looking at doing more of that.

So again, there could be travel expenses

associated with that,

just traveling within the south

and then also I love,

and I’m very passionate
about capturing stuff

from national parks and
more wilderness stuff.

I mean, you can tell kind of

that I very much am doing
the things that I love

and I’ve learned how to monetize them

and that’s kinda what
I try to teach people

on this YouTube channel

is how to monetize things

that let them build a creative
lifestyle for themselves.

Now, with regard to my taxes,

it just depends on the year

but if you look at 2020,
it’s over $40,000 in taxes.

So that’s something that
you have to look at.

Like I said, I have those
four business accounts

and one of them

it’s just specifically for taxes.

When you set money aside in
your retirement accounts,

it actually lowers your
overall taxable income.

You can claim the deductions
that are necessary

for your business in terms of gear,

your software, your services

and the payments you
make hiring contractors

or people on your team.

I love the profit first business model

because it means managing
this amount of money

something I was never
formally taught to do.

A lot of you,

if you’re making significant money,

you think that your life is squared away

once you learn how to
make a significant income

and you’re making six figures or more,

but what no one tells you
is how to manage it properly

and no one teaches you that,

no one teaches you how to
effectively manage your taxes

and yes, I believe, and I firmly believe

that everybody should pay the
legal minimum required amount

of their taxes.

I’m not above the idea
of taking deductions

that the government and the
law says you’re entitled to

and I think you should be doing that

so that that money can
then be properly invested

that you’re retaining into
yourself, your health,

your family and your team,

the people that you
directly are responsible for

in your life

but that’s just what I personally believe.

None of this is anything I did overnight.

This is the benefits of
a decade of discipline

and also just the amount of
value that I’ve been creating

by scaling things.

I learned a long time
ago that there’s no way

to trade my time for money

and then still become
financially secure and stable

and I think the last year or two

has taught everybody that job
security is largely a myth

and while not everyone may feel

that they are cut out
to be an entrepreneur

and I’ve heard it all before,

the creator economy has proven

that people can take things
that are passionate about

and build successful lifestyles around it

or pick up a side hustle

that allows them to invest in their future

and with the things that you
can do now with investing

and the opportunities
available to all of us,

it is possible that something
extraordinary could happen

that changes your life

because you were in a position

to take a little bit of risk

without hurting the stability
of what you need to do

for yourself and your family.

I know the question is
always well like Roberto,

how do you make that kind of money?

And I will be doing a
video about how I earn

my $25,000 a month, $300,000 a year income

but I can tell you the short version of it

is that it is a combination
of what I do here on YouTube,

why I do what affiliate marketing,

a membership website that I own,

my personal one-on-one
coaching business services

that my digital agency provides now,

as well as doing brand
deals and sponsorships.

I also sell my own
digital template bundle.

It’s not an online course.

There’s nothing wrong with that.

I actually licensed a course

to LinkedIn a couple of years ago

that still pays me passive income

and now we even have a YouTube channel

and a music brand

that makes me royalties on
apple, Spotify and Amazon

and that YouTube channel is
also about to be monetized.

So there’s just a lot of income streams

that make all this possible

but again, at the end of the day,

making money only matters

if you manage it in a responsible way

and you’re looking at
paying yourself first,

building an emergency fund,

saving for your retirement, your future,

or if anything should
happen to your health

and also investing the
people that you care about

as well as just learning
how to properly invest

for your overall financial future.

Question of the day,

what was the most surprising thing

about how I spend my income?

I’d love to from you
in the comment section.

If you enjoyed this video,

look up my playlist in
the description down below

called Not Financial Advice

and then also, if you are interested

in becoming a full-time content creator,

I have a video here
about making money online

that you also will enjoy.

That is linked in the
description down below as well.

Also links to a lot of the
things that I talk about

and I use will be down there as well.

Thank you so much for watching

and don’t forget

go out there

and create something
awesome today, take care.

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