How and why I sold Get Rich Slowly

When I started Get Rich Slowly — on 15 April 2006 — it made very little money. It earned a few pennies per day. Slowly, the income grew. A few pennies per day turned into a few dollars per day, and that turned into tens of dollars per day. Eventually I was making enough money from this site that I could quit my day job to blog full time. The last time I mentioned my income on GRS, I wrote that I was making $5,000 a month. That was in November of 2007, I think. Then my wife, my lawyer, and my accountant all asked me to stop writing about my income. When that holy trinity speaks in unison, you listen, right?

The more I worked on this site, the more the income increased. I won't say how much I was making, but if you read Crystal's guest post from earlier this month, you can make some educated guesses.

As Get Rich Slowly grew, one of the curious side effects was that people began to make offers to buy the site. I always ignored those offers.

Eventually I realized I was being foolish. I wasn't following my own advice. What would I tell my readers? Well, I'd tell them to try to make more money, so why wasn't I trying to do the same? At the beginning of 2009, I made a private New Year's resolution: I decided to field every offer for the site that I received.

The Razor's Edge

It didn't take long to get the first offer. At the beginning of January 2009, someone wrote saying he wanted to buy Get Rich Slowly.

“How much will you pay?” I wrote back.

“I'll give you $5,000,” the guy said.

“No thanks,” I said. That was less than one month of revenue. I'd be foolish to sell.

A week later, I received another offer to buy the site. But I didn't notice. I was distracted. I'd just received news that my best friend had killed himself. This single event rocked my world. If you want to find a catalyst for all the things that have happened with me over the past few years — the travel, the soul-searching, the sale of this site — look no further than Sparky's death.

Suddenly, blogging didn't matter. I had been burned out before this, but now I wanted to leave, to quit cold turkey, to do something else. My wife and I talked things over, and she agreed that it might make sense to sell the site.

When the dust had settled at the end of January, I found the second offer to buy GRS waiting in my inbox. I replied.

“How much will you pay?” I asked.

“We don't know,” the guy said. “First, you have to sign a non-disclosure agreement. Second, you have to send us all the financial information related to your business. Third, you have to wait.” This was baffling. I contacted my accountant and attorney to ask questions. They said this was standard practice, and to go ahead. I sent the info over and waited. And waited. And waited.

The First Offer

While I waited, Kris and I talked more about the possibility of selling Get Rich Slowly. Could I actually do it? Would I? In general, I loved the work, and I loved the community that was coalescing around the site. Plus, I felt a huge responsibility to the people who had been reading for three years already. I didn't want to leave them in the lurch. But I was feeling increasingly frustrated, as if I'd said everything I could say about money. I wanted to quit anyhow, so what was the difference? And there was the fact that I wanted to write a book and begin giving community presentations about personal finance. Thinking things through made my head hurt. There was so much to consider.

Eventually, the company (which I'll call Computer Resources so that I don't violate the NDA) came back with an offer. How much was the offer? Because of the NDA, I can't give a number, not even a fake one. But let's just say Computer Resources offered me a lot of money for the site.

In fact, the offer was so big I couldn't refuse. At the same time — again, following my own advice on this blog — I figured I had to negotiate. I submitted a counter-offer. Computer Resources went back to the drawing board.

About this time, I started to feel as if this was all way over my head. I did some research on the web and found other sites that had been purchased by Computer Resources. I contacted the site owners and talked by phone or by e-mail. They all had good things to say about Computer Resources except that apparently the company simply purchased sites, slapped ads all over them, and then left them to die. They never updated content. I didn't really want that to happen to Get Rich Slowly.

One of the fellows I talked to suggested I contact an investment banking firm to help guide me. “They'll take a commission, but it'll be worth it,” he told me. “It's just like using a real estate agent to sell a house.”

The Second Offer

As February 2009 wore on, Computer Resources still hadn't responded to my counter-offer, so I contacted the investment bankers. They were excited to work with me. “You've already done a lot of the work on your own,” they said. “But we think you can get more for your site. We think you should spend a few months sprucing things up and then put it out at auction.”

“That's a good idea,” I said, “except for two things. First, I'm burned out and I want to sell now. Second, the economy is tanking, and I'm afraid the revenue for personal finance sites will dry up before long. I feel like I'm on the top of a bubble and should sell now.”

Note: This last bit is an important piece of the puzzle. Remember that in late 2008 and early 2009, the economy took a nose-dive. It crashed. The site's revenue was unaffected, but I thought I could read the writing on the wall, and I was worried. I wanted to “de-risk”, as the investment bankers called it.

I agreed to let the investment bankers contact one other company, a company called QuinStreet.

As the investment bankers were talking with QuinStreet, Computer Resources came back with their counteroffer. It wasn't much more than before, but they added a bunch of stock options. I had a week to respond. I told them I'd think about it, and meanwhile started talking with QuinStreet.

At first, QuinStreet made me nervous. I was afraid they'd buy Get Rich Slowly and convert it into one big credit card ad. But during our conversations, they explained they had a grander vision, that they were committed to building a collection of sites with solid financial content, sites like Get Rich Slowly. Unlike Computer Resources, they wouldn't let GRS wither on the vine; they needed to make money, yes, but they wanted to provide content while doing so.

As the deadline approached for a decision on the Computer Resources offer, QuinStreet gave me an offer of their own. If I would remain with the site for three years, QuinStreet would pay me almost twice what Computer Resources was offering. I was floored. Still, I wasn't willing to commit to three more years at Get Rich Slowly. I was burned out. My best friend had just killed himself. I wanted to do other things. So, I did something strange: I asked for less money.

The Final Offer

Tuesday, 03 March 2009 was a big day for me. While the surface of this blog was calm and normal, there was a flurry of activity behind the scenes. Computer Resources was demanding a decision on their offer. QuinStreet was scrambling to give me a second, lower offer. I was hunkered at my accountant's office, waiting. My lawyer was at his office, in constant communication with me. At the end of the afternoon, QuinStreet sent over their revised proposal.

They were offering about 33% more than Computer Resources. Plus, I wouldn't be tied into the site for three years; I could walk away from GRS at any time.

My advisors and I agreed that this was an offer we could accept, and we finally responded to Computer Resources, which was growing impatient. I asked if they could beat the offer from QuinStreet. They thought about it for an hour, and then declined. They were cranky.

Note: Though the money played a huge role in my decision, it wasn't the only factor. Because I was burned out on the workload, it was a relief to find an organization that could take on so much of the work, such as monetization, marketing, and all of the technical aspects of the site. QuinStreet also had access to contacts I could use when writing articles.

During the month of March 2009, I spent much of my time working on the “Asset Purchase Agreement” to sell this site. QuinStreet wanted some things in the contract, and I wanted others. Mostly, though, our visions matched. They wanted a personal finance site with solid content, and the contract we created reflects that.

For instance, QuinStreet offered me editorial independence. What does that mean? It means that QuinStreet won't (and legally cannot) tell me what to write. It meant that I could continue to share the same sorts of things I'd been sharing at Get Rich Slowly since day one. I couldn't be forced to write about credit cards or payday loans or other things that went against my better judgment. (Not that QuinStreet would have asked me to write about those things — it just gave me some insurance.)

But I couldn't write about everything I wanted. As you know, I'm a pretty open guy. I share much of my life on the internet. And I would have shared the sale of the site, too, except that QuinStreet requested a non-disclosure agreement, just as Computer Resources had. I balked at this. “It's standard operating procedure,” QuinStreet told me. “We don't want our competitors to know what we're doing.”

The investment bankers, my accountant, and my lawyer all said the same thing: “It's standard operating procedure. They don't want their competitors to know what they're doing.” I went along with it, even though it meant I wouldn't be able to share this very important event with GRS readers.

Note: Although the NDA prevented me from discussing the sale of the site, I've dropped broad hints over the years in a handful of articles. The hints were vague enough that 99.9% of people never noticed. But some people caught on. Over the past three years, a handful of astute GRS readers guessed the truth.

A New Era

On 01 April 2009 — yes, April Fool's Day — we signed the paperwork. QuinStreet acquired Get Rich Slowly.

At first, I thought I'd stick around for only a few more weeks…or a few more months. I flew to San Francisco to meet with the new owners, and we discussed the direction of the site. They showed me the re-design they'd already begun to implement. (By the way: If this is the only design you've ever known for Get Rich Slowly, then you've never read it when I owned the site.)

Because I wanted to leave the site, we had to find new contributors. We held auditions for staff writers. Remember that? That was because I wanted to leave, and we needed replacements. Robert Brokamp and Donna Freedman write here because I was going to walk away. The reader story every Sunday started because I was going to walk away.

But you know what? I didn't walk away. GRS was my baby. Plus, working with QuinStreet took a lot of the pressure off me. Besides, I felt an obligation to you, the readers. I stuck around. In fact, I've stuck around for almost three years now, working with QuinStreet to guide the site's direction. No, it's not exactly the direction it would have been taken if I'd been completely in control myself. But that was never going to be an option. I was going to leave the site after Sparky's death. I was going to quit cold turkey. The GRS of the past three years is the best it could possibly have been under the circumstances.

Plus, QuinStreet has been more responsive than I had hoped. When I sold the site, I feared the worst. The worst never came to pass. In fact, the people I work with always listen to my concerns (and to your concerns) and try to balance those with the needs of the business. I think the partnership has been very successful over the past three years, and believe it will continue to be so.

Managing My Money

What did I do with the money I earned for selling the site? I practiced what I preached.

  • First, Kris and I paid off the mortgage. If you'll recall, in early February 2009, we refinanced our home. We'd started that process before we realized that we might sell the site, and we saw it through to completion. But within weeks of re-financing, we paid off the mortgage completely. This has been one of the toughest things not to discuss. I've wanted to talk about it many times over the past three years, but have been unable to. Now I can. (And believe me: Not having a mortgage has made the divorce process much, much easier.)
  • Second, I paid taxes. Yes, I know that by paying taxes early, I'm letting the government have use of my money instead of earning interest on it myself. I don't care. This is one area where I still prefer to be irrational with money. I like to pay taxes immediately so that there's no chance I'll forget about them or make a mistake. That's what I did with the money from the sale of the blog: I paid taxes right away.
  • Third, I followed my own advice again. I set aside a piece of the windfall to use for things I wanted. I bought season tickets to the Portland Timbers. Kris and I vacationed in South Africa (and still plan to vacation together in South America next month). And so on.
  • But most of the money went straight into savings. One GRS reader — Dylan Ross — is a financial planner, and he's been privy to some of my financial moves. He's seen that a bulk of the money went into index funds (again, practicing what I preach), while another portion went into municipal bonds. (The economy was rocky at the time, and Kris was nervous, so we put some of the cash somewhere “safe”.) I've also loaned some money to the family box company so they could make some capital improvements.

Over the past three years, I've strived to not touch any of the money I earned from selling Get Rich Slowly. And that's my goal for the future too. Instead, I live off my income from writing. QuinStreet pays me a modest salary to manage Get Rich Slowly, and I continue to write for Entrepreneur magazine and other outlets. Though I'm in no danger of falling into debt, I tell myself that touching my savings would be the same thing. My goal is to keep from deficit spending. So far, so good.

J.D.'s note: Some readers will be frustrated to learn that I now have a huge savings buffer. They'll feel they can't relate to my situation. I get that. And there's no doubt that the savings buffer lets me sleep easy at night. But my actual operating income is very similar to that of many other folks. I have a ton in savings, but my monthly cash flow is rather mundane.

The Bottom Line

So, what does all of this mean for the future of Get Rich Slowly? I'm not sure, actually. QuinStreet owns the site, and they can do what they want with it. If they decided that this site would make them more money as a porn site, they could turn it into a porn site. But they're not going to do that. After working with the company for the past three years, I'm convinced they want to provide quality content so that people can improve their financial lives. Yes, they hope this will lead folks to respond to the advertising — they want to make money — but they understand that content is king.

Example: We'll soon be rolling out the Get Rich Slowly Guide to Money, an entirely separate section of the site designed to provide a central reference area for all your financial questions. I couldn't have produced this on my own. But QuinStreet has the resources to make something like this happen.

I know that many folks will be pleased that I've followed my own advice and managed to achieve financial prosperity. I also know that some folks will resent this success. And, especially, that I haven't mentioned it before. Well, I couldn't mention it for a long time because QuinStreet was trying to keep the news from its competitors. But I can talk about it now.

The bottom line is that for roughly half its life, Get Rich Slowly has been owned by QuinStreet. (March 15th is the actual mid-point date for ownership.) If this site has helped you move toward your own financial goals over the past three years, it's been under their reign. When I talk about “social media elves” or “marketing elves” or “technical elves” or any other sorts of elves, I'm actually talking about QuinStreet employees. There's now a whole team of folks who help with this site. It's not a one-man show, and hasn't been for a long time.

There have been a number of changes to GRS over the past few years. We've brought on staff writers, and my voice has diminished. It's flattering that some folks find this frustrating, but it was also unavoidable. Lately, though, I feel re-invigorated. Now that I've been able to share some background — both in my personal life and my professional life — there's tons for me to write about. Plus, I've been wanting to do more smaller articles like I used to.

I won't become more prolific this week or next — I'm about to leave for Argentina! — but in March, I intend to increase my output at Get Rich Slowly. It won't ever reach the “12 article per week” level that I used to produce, but it'll be more than the “one article per week” level I'm at now. It'll be fun for me, and I hope that it'll be fun for you.

Note: I suspect this post will generate a lot of comments and questions. Because of that, I plan to be around most of the day to be active in the comments. If I don't respond right away, be patient. I'll do so as soon as possible.
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Kate
Kate
8 years ago

Congratulations JD! I dont think you should worry about people resenting you or thinking you wont resonate with the readers anymore. The site is ‘get rich slowly’, not get just-about-comfortable slowly. Sure, we dont all have to be rich, but it’d be nice – right?! You’ve worked hard over a number of years, and it’s paid off. You should be proud of your accomplishment, not only because of the pay off for yourself, but also because it demonstrates to all of us that it can be done! I’m sure we’d all love to be in your shoes and it’s inspiring… Read more »

Sam
Sam
8 years ago
Reply to  Kate

I for one liked the redesign and the other writers. I think different authors, obviously provide different view points, different life exp, etc. I suspected that there was some investors or other powers behind the current based on the dramatic uptick in ads, etc. I think it is great that you were able to quit your day job, turn your writing into a career and profit. Take that profit and use it for things that you love like travel. If you are not changing and growing you are stagnating. My only criticism is the separation from Kris. It bums me… Read more »

sandi_k
sandi_k
8 years ago
Reply to  Sam

Not surprisingly, Sam and I agree – I’m GLAD you’ve been so prudent and thoughtful and fiscally responsible. I suspected something was up when all the links to other blogs went away from the right side of the page (only to be replaced with ads). I know what a game-changer having someone close to you die can be; in a weird way, it’s reassuring to hear that that is such a catalyst for you, as it means that Sparky continues to have a serious impact on your life and your decisions. That’s a pretty profound friendship. I’m still bummed out… Read more »

Katy
Katy
8 years ago
Reply to  Sam

Congratulations. As someone who’s followed the blog very closely, I feel the content is just about as good as it gets in personal the finance world. Just my opinion, but being named to the 2011 list of the top 25 blogs by Time and winning the Plutus Awards lifetime achievement award in 2010 (both well after the sale) are both testament to the fact that others might agree with me. Good job and glad to see that we’ll be seeing more of you.

Nick
Nick
8 years ago
Reply to  Sam

If anyone’s interested in what the site used to look like, either because you started reading the blog after the redesign like JD mentions in the post, or because it’s simply been so long that you’ve forgotten (like me), you can check out archive.org for any pre-2009 date.

The url below should take you there:

http://web.archive.org/web/20080730132959/https://www.getrichslowly.org/

Vanessa
Vanessa
8 years ago
Reply to  Nick

Wow, nothing ever really dies on the internet does it?

I must’ve been reading this site longer than I thought because I remember that layout. And then the change to the new layout, and the trial and error with the nested comments–how would we ever get used to them? And then experimenting with the colored comments, and finally the shades of green comments we have now. Quite an evolution in such a short period of time!

Lincoln
Lincoln
8 years ago
Reply to  Kate

Hey JD, congrats! I have been reading GRS for the last 4-5 years (rarely commenting) and am glad that you were able to “do what works for you” in selling the site and making a profit at the same time. I think it’s funny that, after you sold GRS, you have been “hiding in plain sight” as the editor. Question 1: if you had such a major windfall, why did you still feel compelled to give up comic books? Question 2: do you feel like it’s less socially acceptable to talk about increasing your earnings versus reducing your spending? More… Read more »

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  Lincoln

Answer 1: I’ve given up comic books because I feel like I’m collecting them out of compulsion. I don’t read everything I buy. I want to, but I don’t. So, I haven’t given them up completely; I’ve just reduced my comic spending radically. (As in $0 so far in 2012, though that’ll change soon.) This is the notion of “conscious spending” that I write about all the time. I would much, much rather spend that comic money on Spanish lessons right now. I love learning Spanish much more than I enjoy reading comics. That may change in the future (and… Read more »

KAD
KAD
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

I bet there are Spanish comic books out there… 🙂

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  KAD

🙂 🙂 🙂

Yes, yes. There certainly are. But they’re hard to find, which slows me down. Still, I came home from Peru with a stack of faves. And Argentina is the home of the wonderful comic strip “Mafalda”. Ah, the wonderful blending of hobbies…

Eric
Eric
8 years ago

I really appreciate the disclosure. Still a fan of GRS! 🙂

SB @ One Cent At A Time
SB @ One Cent At A Time
8 years ago
Reply to  Eric

I knew it JD, not very long ago though. I noticed GRS and five cent nickel have the same IP. If I am not mistaken, I think Consumerism Commentary is also with QuinnStreet. Recently we saw ‘The Simple Dollar’ also got bought out. Bargainneering also is bought i heard. Wisebread and Money Crashers are owned by companies rather than individuals. I think as long as the original voice stays, blog would do just fine. I wonder what’s the next big blog target. What was your daily unique number when you were bought JD? If its not part of NDA, you… Read more »

Trent Hamm
Trent Hamm
8 years ago

It is extremely difficult for a single blogger to maintain a site when it reaches a certain threshold of popularity. There is just too much to do. You are constantly making Faustian bargains: do I write, do I approve comments, do I deal with the deluge of email, do I negotiate ads, do I spend time with my wife? At some point, you either have to do something radical like eliminating comments (like Zen Habits did), selling the site, giving up, or hiring staff. There simply is no other route, because as the site grows, the time required for a… Read more »

SB @ One Cent At A Time
SB @ One Cent At A Time
8 years ago
Reply to  Trent Hamm

Trent great that you came to reply! Appreciate it a lot. With my very small blog I sometimes feel over exhausted with those things you mentioned. If things continue to grow at the rate it is going now, I’ll have to hire staff. Absolutely no argument over that. Its good for readers and good for bloggers when hands combine.

mdd
mdd
8 years ago
Reply to  Trent Hamm

Trent,

I hope you’ve gotten more honest since the day when you told people on your site to hide their assets in the names of other family members so kids quialified for more grant money for college. That was illegal, and I stopped reading you then. I hope that, like JD, you paid taxes on your windfall and that you haven’t hidden the money to qualify for forms of assistance.

Steven C
Steven C
8 years ago
Reply to  Eric

Yes, JD exercised quite a bit of integrity–and loyalty to his readers–I believe, while trying to balance the legal requirements of the NDA. The fact that he cashed-in on this hard earned “investment” is an encouragement to most of us. Good on ya JD!

Annelise
Annelise
8 years ago

I absolutely do not resent your success! When you began the site, did you envisage, even just as a flicker at the back of your mind, that it might end up making you a lot of money, and ultimately financially independent? To go from working a boring job in the family firm to this is quite remarkable, especially as you were long past the age by which we’re supposed to have “made it”. And do you just think you got lucky, or could someone set up a blog today and emulate your success? I’m quite happy in my career and… Read more »

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  Annelise

Great questions, Annelise. Let’s see if I can answer them. When I started Get Rich Slowly, I had no idea what it would become, financially or otherwise. I’ve always said that my goals were (in this order): to help me get out of debt, to help others get out of debt, and to make a little money in the process. That I’ve been able to exceed all of these goals amazes me. Did I get lucky? Yes, of course. But luck isn’t the only element involved. I worked very hard to produce quality content. And I stuck with it day… Read more »

MoneyforCollegePro
MoneyforCollegePro
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

@JD – I did start reading your site right before the re-design, so it appears that I started reading right as you were selling. Crazy!

It’s been a fun journey to track your progress, and I feel like I have come to know you over the years. I would like to go back and read the body of work from before April 2009 however. Just to see what the JD ROTH only site was like. Best of luck in all your future endeavors (and I hope you continue to write here for many years!)

Tyler Karaszewski
Tyler Karaszewski
8 years ago
Reply to  Annelise

Blogging isn’t so much a “trendy” way to get rich lately, as a highly publicly visible way. It’s sort of like being a professional athlete. You have to be both good and lucky to get rich doing it. Anyone can play basketball just like anyone can start a blog, but only a few can do it well enough to make money at it. If anything, basketball is a lot more straightforward because there’s a well established career progression to becoming a pro player, at leastyoumalways know what you have to do next. This isn’t to say you (or anyone else)… Read more »

Jennifer
Jennifer
8 years ago

J.D., congratulations! What a terrific accomplishment. I’ve only been reading your site for a few years, so I wasn’t familiar with it pre-sale. It is the most well-written P.F. blog I’ve seen and I love the format. Kudos to you for pursuing your dreams and making some money in the process!

TheTradingInvestor
TheTradingInvestor
8 years ago

WOW! I am very surprised about this post. I thought this site is owned by JD Roth ONLY. Never thought you have already sold it. But still, your site rocks! It really helped me a lot financially! I am still 26, no debt only assets (though only paper assets for now. Real estate will be next). Thank You! =)

Russ
Russ
8 years ago

First of all, congrats! First Trent, now you – seems this is the month for personal finance bloggers reaching (or revealing) major milestones!

Secondly, your mortgage refinancing post says your mortgage balance was $207k. If you paid this off and still put ‘most’ of the money from the sale into savings, you must have received a very tidy sum indeed. Now I’m wondering just how much revenue this blog generates if QuinStreet expect to get their money back even after all those running costs. Wow.

my honest answer
my honest answer
8 years ago

Wow, I never suspected a thing! I’m very pleased for you that you reached your goal of financial freedom. Please do not apologize for that – it’s what we’re all striving for, and why we’re all here. I’m looking forward to hearing more of your stories after your vacation (enjoy it!)

louisa @ TheReallyGoodLife
louisa @ TheReallyGoodLife
8 years ago

We’ve been approached about selling various elements of our enterprises a few times. None have progressed very far for one reason or another so it’s very interesting to read about someone who has gone through with it – and especially that you managed to negotiate a no tie-in deal is very interesting. I understand that you wanted to de-risk but did you consider doing what QuinStreet are doing with the site now by yourself? ie, hiring people to do the extra work/marketing etc. One other thing: I hadn’t particularly twigged that the site had been sold until Crystal’s article the… Read more »

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago

Good question. I didn’t actually ever consider hiring people to help with aspects of the site I didn’t like. I’m not sure why. I guess I never could wrap my mind around a blog as a business, even though mine clearly had become one. I mean, when I sold it, I was paying somebody to help me part-time, and had just hired a graphic designer to give the site a more professional look. Over the past three years, I’ve met many bloggers who do operate their sites as businesses. (The women of the Savvy Blogging Summit are great examples.) I… Read more »

louisa @ TheReallyGoodLife
louisa @ TheReallyGoodLife
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

Thanks for replying – I agree, what’s done is done, I was just hoping that with a bit of insight, the rest of us could learn for the future from your experience 🙂 (I did try hiring people to do the bits of blogging I didn’t like – but it wasn’t very successful as they didn’t have the same love for the sites as I did. I’m almost glad that it didn’t particularly pay off financially and I had an excuse to call an end to it!) And yes, do please encourage the Twitter elf to show us a bit… Read more »

Elizabeth
Elizabeth
8 years ago

I agree about the Twitter elf! Social media is like blogging — it’s much more interesting when there’s personality and a story behind it. If people want a feed of articles, there’s RSS for that.

TOm
TOm
8 years ago

Wow. Always thought it was weird you got your mortgage paid off so quick. Hard to trust the site now. Congrats by the way.

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  TOm

Hm. I’ve never revealed before today that we paid off the mortgage. I simply stopped talking about it. And when I did talk about it, I stuck to facts about the loan only instead of discussing it in present tense. It was…awkward. I didn’t like it.

That said, some folks figure it out, as I mentioned.

TOm
TOm
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

As a prudent saver and budgeter I just always thought it was odd you went from in debt to “completely” debt free so fast. I assumed that meant your mortgage. I’m not hating. I’m happy for you. Congrats. Btw, I always thought the other contributors were guest bloggers. Are they paid too?

LauraElle
LauraElle
8 years ago
Reply to  TOm

I thought guest bloggers were paid. You know, like a guest star on a sitcom. This is a personal finance site so I assumed they were getting paid.

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  LauraElle

Staff writers are paid. Guest bloggers are not. I don’t know of any other site that pays guest bloggers either. Guest bloggers usually provide content in order to gain exposure, including links. Links are the currency of the web, and in many ways more valuable than money. I’m not joking. I spent six months writing for the Time magazine money blog. That was an unpaid gig, but I was happy to do it because (a) it gave me wider exposure and (b) I got links links links! When I write guest posts for larger sites (like Boing Boing and Lifehacker),… Read more »

Tarun
Tarun
8 years ago

Dear J.D,

I am reading all the articles on ‘Get Rich Slowly’ for some time now and have never commented before or took part in discussions.
However, As a silent admirer of this site’s good personal finance content, I would like to comment and congratulate you on your success.
This site made you rich slowly and surely.

Regards,

Tarun Sikri
New Delhi, India.

javier
javier
8 years ago

That’s what happens when you don’t look at the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, you don’t realize who you are talking with. I didn’t.

I have to recognize that this posts takes me a bit away from my target of sending you a stroy as my first year living on my source (job).

One question, I guess QuinStreet has made a great deal. They’ve paid less and you haven’t left the site.

MC
MC
8 years ago
Reply to  javier

They paid more and he still has a work revenue stream when he “wants” it. That’s a nice position to be in.

To me that’s the end goal, work because you want to, then it’s not work.

Thad P
Thad P
8 years ago

Fascinating view behind the scenes. I have followed your blog for well over a year, and always find your articles helpful. The journey seems to be paying off for you, and yet you still have held on to the core of who you are. That is really hard to beat.

Stephen
Stephen
8 years ago

As others have mentioned, GRS = J.D. and as long as you are around writing articles, I’ll still be around reading them (hopefully anyhow) Not to diminish the work of the staff writers, but a lot of the content they put out has been lower than your own work. There are some great articles in their too, but on a whole it just comes across as less. Less than what, I’m not so sure. Perhaps it is just the difference in motivation for writing, perhaps it is just that your writing has been following a journey that lots of us… Read more »

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  Stephen

Thanks for the kind words, Stephen. For me, the difference between some of the staff writers and my own work boils down to one thing: story. When I speak to other bloggers, I stress the importance of story. Story (or narrative, if you prefer) is a HUGE part of this blog. Not just the getting out of debt story, but other parts of my story as well. For some reason, many people are scared to share story. They want to produce purely informative articles that anyone could write. That’s not just true here, but at other sites too. People are… Read more »

Zach
Zach
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

I just wanted to jump in and say that I have a different view! Donna’s posts are fantastic, IMHO. I look forward to them more than anything, because it feels like she’s “in the trenches” with me. JD’s posts have been a bit more “future oriented” to me, but nevertheless important.

Vanessa
Vanessa
8 years ago
Reply to  Zach

Didn’t Donna used to write for MSN Money? She’s no ordinary staff writer, she’s in a whole different league!

schmei
schmei
8 years ago
Reply to  Zach

Donna is the tops. Every time I see that there’s a new post from her, I grab my coffee and get ready to enjoy a few minutes of fine writing.

Not to dismiss your own fine writing, JD, but hiring her was a brilliant move.

Jess
Jess
8 years ago
Reply to  Zach

Oh yeah, Donna’s posts are awesome! But I like most of the staff writers’ stuff, it’s good to have different voices/experiences.

imelda
imelda
8 years ago
Reply to  Zach

I actually enjoy April’s posts the most, after JD’s. Possibly that’s because her voice comes the closest to JD’s. I am usually disappointed when I see a post that didn’t come from JD, but when I see April’s name, I relax a little.

Fond Farewell
Fond Farewell
8 years ago
Reply to  Zach

I doubt Donna will be in the trenches with us for much longer as her popularity grows and she earns more and more. I love her and read everything she writes, but lets face it, if it can happen to JD it will happen to her. And I’ll be happy for her!

Katie
Katie
8 years ago
Reply to  Zach

J.D., April, and Robert Brokamp are my favorites. Donnna however is my least favorite. Her posts always feel a bit too pat and almost fake. Not fake untrue, but writing for your audience taken to the extreme. They feels much more commercialized, and more like fluff/human interest pieces. Boils down to I Just don’t like her style and skim them at best.

Ash (in US)
Ash (in US)
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

I think the more “personal” stories on the site–the ones where people talk about their personal experiences with money–are really what make me follow this site. I don’t have a lot of use for “here’s a review of this product” or “should you pick X or Y” articles, but give me some details (like April did in her article on loaning money) and I’ll read or chat all day. It’s nice to have varying voices, and I like them with personality!

Jaime
Jaime
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

I think that’s what makes GRS different from other websites. There are way too many finance websites that are informational, but the personal stories make GRS stand apart from the other sites. The stories are what make GRS relatable and human.

KAD
KAD
8 years ago

Thanks for sharing, JD. As someone else said, it must be a huge weight off your mind to be able to talk about this. Congratulations on building something through hard work and seeing your efforts rewarded, not just financially, but also by the fact that the community continues to thrive. And I’m glad you decided to stick around. I think it’s not a coincidence that we all respond more strongly to your voice than to any other. It’s your *story* that we began following. The other posts are relevant to readers interested in personal finance. They are mostly well-written, and… Read more »

Jaime
Jaime
8 years ago
Reply to  KAD

Lots of people travel and don’t end up committing suicide. Plenty of people choose non-conventional paths and are very happy and don’t choose suicide. I think its kind of rude to say that his friend’s nomad lifestyle led him to commit suicide.

Come on!

KAD
KAD
8 years ago
Reply to  Jaime

Obviously, there are people who stay home all or most of their lives and yet commit suicide, too. You misunderstood me as implying that travel caused the suicide. That’s not what I said, and definitely not what I meant to imply. Remember, I did acknowledge that suicide is complicated. We readers of the site don’t know why Sparky took his own life. What I suggested was that the nomadic life, though JD told us Sparky enjoyed it very much, was somehow not enough to make Sparky want to stay in this world. But if JD took it that other way,… Read more »

MikeTheRed
MikeTheRed
8 years ago

JD, A very belated congrats on the sale. I’m among those who has only known GRS during the time of QuinStreet’s ownership, but that ownership was so subtle that I never even suspected it. At this point I’ve contributed two reader stories and a reader question to the flow of content over the past two years. Given how consistent your voice has been and how free of influence the site seems to be, I don’t mind for a moment that I contributed to QuinStreet’s success rather than simply your own directly. I think the comments section on this article will… Read more »

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  MikeTheRed

I can try to write an article about financial independence and “post-income” personal finance. The caveat is that I don’t consider myself there. Yes, I can now freely admit I’m in the fourth stage of personal finance (and that all my ruminations on those stages were spurred by the impending sale of the site — that series was written during March 2009, as I was negotiating). But, as I’ve said, mostly not much has changed except I have a huge buffer in savings. Because I try not to touch that buffer, it doesn’t play an active role in my decisions.… Read more »

Mom of five
Mom of five
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

Congratulations! I’m really looking forward to seeing how you manage your wealth.

We’re not quite where you are yet – we still owe about 125k on our mortgage. We haven’t made paying it off a priority, choosing instead to focus on increasing our savings and investments. We began non-retirement investing about two years ago and we are real newbies. We mostly have been going with individual dividend paying stocks, but we’re totally open to being convinced to do something else. 😉

Michael
Michael
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

Your site has been a huge help to me as well. I’ve read your articles for the past four years and they’ve been the most helpful than any other site.

Kudos to you and also the QuinStreet team for keeping this site relatively intact!

Who knows where my financial life would be if it weren’t for your blog?

Keep up the great work. congrats!

Traci
Traci
8 years ago

Thanks for your honesty. I say congratulations and keep up the terrific work!

abby
abby
8 years ago

good for you!!! i’ve only been around for a couple of years so i never knew grs as yours. although i never would have guessed it was owned by someone else so i think you did a really good job! congratulations again!

Sonja
Sonja
8 years ago

Good for you 🙂

I’ve apparently never read the site while it was yours, but I like it either way. And as long as you’re still happy with the decision and it was the best mentally and emotionally, good job.

Cheryl @ Heavenly Cent
Cheryl @ Heavenly Cent
8 years ago

I just started reading your blog. As a new blogger trying to get going (and not loving my day job right now), I find it inspiring that you were able to find financial success in blogging… you quit a job you didn’t like, paid off your debts and have a great financial future.

The fact you didn’t share the sale with your readers is just business, in my opinion. You have continued to share great wealth building strategies through it all–and that’s the important thing.

You’re living the dream and that’s pretty inspiring!

Justin
Justin
8 years ago

Big congrats J.D. – very happy for you! I assumed staff writers were a way for you to maintain sanity as the demands of the site grew. I’ve been with you from nearly the beginning and your transformation has been rewarding to watch as well as inspiring. While I haven’t experienced a “pay off the mortgage windfall” I have eliminated all credit card debt, gotten married, doubled my income, locked away money in savings and bought a very affordable house. At the very least, your experiences have been a great example to hundreds of thousands of us, so kudos. Enjoy… Read more »

Mike Holman
Mike Holman
8 years ago

Congrats on the sale JD.

I suspect you made the right decision with the lower offer. Had you taken the higher offer and been “chained” to the site for the past three years – you might not been so keen to stick around once the earn-out phase was over.

Baker
Baker
8 years ago

You deserve all your success. That was true 3 years ago, and still true today.

You’ve helped, mentored, and inspired an uncountable number of people, including me. 🙂

Congrats for the reveal! 🙂

Kevin B
Kevin B
8 years ago

Congratulations on your integrity, success, overcoming a personal tragedy and reinvigorating yourself. It’s inspiring to me, also a stressed out entrepreneur. I teared up because I was moved by your personal journey and thank you so much for sharing it.

Leah
Leah
8 years ago

Ah, so many things now make sense! The comment tinkering, especially, is now clear (I remember so many different formats for that here). I know I was reading pre-sale, but I don’t remember the exact design/format. I am so glad that you’ve stayed along for the ride. Like others, your voice is the one I appreciate the most. I agree with you about story — that’s my favorite part. I can read all the tips I want, but what I really want to know is how someone puts those tips into action. I must say, your posts have been rocking… Read more »

sai
sai
8 years ago

Congratulations J.D.! But you know, I have mixed feelings reading this article. In fact, a couple of your articles in the past one month have left me flummoxed and initially speechless (The divorce one was the other). To be truthful, I am left in a bit of pain. I am a guy from India and have been a religiously regular reader of GRS for the past four years and more. I must have read and digested each and every article published here in the past four years. I have immensely benefitted from the sage advice and direction that your blog… Read more »

Angela
Angela
8 years ago

This feels a little bit like finding out that your parents had to have sex in order to have you. First there’s squeamishness and a little bit of horror, and then you’re like, “Well, duh! Why didn’t I see that before?”

I’m just glad that this post essentially recommits you to the site. I was worried that this was the wind-up to you saying goodbye, instead of saying you were about to get more prolific.

Jen
Jen
8 years ago
Reply to  Angela

Well said… That is almost exactly how I felt when I first read this post!

RichUncle EL
RichUncle EL
8 years ago

Hello and thanks for sharing this post with all of your readers. It’s interesting and motivating to read how you turned this site into financial freedom status, kudoos to you. I wanted to ask you if you could do it all over again would you start your blog with wordpress or blogger? Also could you make money without running any adwords ads on your site? Any advice is appreciated as I am working on my new hobby with my own blog. Thanks.

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  RichUncle EL

To be honest, I think the tool you use for blogging is completely irrelevant. I don’t even think the sort of advertising you use matters. If you write unique and useful content that people enjoy reading, that will maximize your chance at success. The other stuff is irrelevant. (Or irrelevant-ish.) Content first. Above all else, content.

jim
jim
8 years ago
Reply to  RichUncle EL

JD is right, content is king. I’d recommend you check out Yakezie.com They are a group of personal finance bloggers you might want to join. General consensus is that WordPress is perferable to Blogger. I’m on Blogger myself and have been for years. It works OK but I do think it woudl be better to use WordPress in general. You might want to switch to WordPress sooner rather than later or you mgiht get stuck on Blogger like I am. Since you’re already on Blogger you could stick to it for a while and then maybe switch to WordPress later… Read more »

Kevin
Kevin
8 years ago

JD, count me as one of those who definitely do NOT resent your success. I’m extremely happy for you. You’re a real-life success story. You took a hobby and turned it into a business that made you into a (presumeably) millionaire overnight. You’ve worked very hard, and you deserve this windfall.

Congrats, my friend. Enjoy the fruits of all your hard work.

tribalNerd
tribalNerd
8 years ago

Grats JD… This explains where the story telling has gone. 🙂

Besides updating a bit more here and writing for E, do you have any future plans of your own yet? Like a book maybe… ???

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  tribalNerd

Well, I’ve already written one book — but it wasn’t the “J.D. book”. One of my projects for this year is to land a deal for an actual “Get Rich Slowly” book, one that’s more intimately tied to story and mission of this site. (In other words, a book that explores the psychology of personal finance through the lens of personal stories…)

Ilene
Ilene
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

Awesome. That’s a book I will really look forward to reading!

Congratulations on your success.

And sympathies on the divorce. My ex-husband and I divorced after 31 years of marriage–our children were grown, but we both love our family life. We’ve done the hard work to remain friends and to acknowlege that divorced or not, we are all still family. I want to encourage you and Kris in having a quality relationship as you move forward on different paths. It can be done!

Michael
Michael
8 years ago

I’m happy to hear you found success in your passion.

I recently paid off my house as well. I was shocked by the level of vitriol this created in people I told. I had to learn (1) not to tell people my business and (2) not care what the haters say.

It’s strange how that aspect of things is the death knell. I go and buy a new car, no one says anything. I pay my house off, and suddenly I’m an elitist. It’s very strange.

Jane
Jane
8 years ago
Reply to  Michael

Vitriol is a pretty strong word. What kind of comments or reactions are we talking about here? Is it the envious – “Well that must be nice, but us normal people can’t do such as thing.” reaction?

Or it true vitriol like “You rich pig” or something equally rude?

Just wondering.

Your use of the word “haters” gives me pause. Usually when I hear someone use that moniker it is usually code for, “People aren’t falling all over me telling me how awesome I am, therefore they are just “haters”.”

Michael
Michael
8 years ago
Reply to  Jane

Jane, Vitriol is a strong word. Sorry, there’s a lot of emotion in what I feel about it. It’s probably too strong. One of my wife’s very close relationships was severely damaged over paying off our house, because the friend felt like we thought we were better than her. That was a very painful situation we went through, brought about through our excitement for accomplishing an important goal, and not being used to not talking about it. At the time, we wondered, why wasn’t everyone excited? As far as haters are concerned, I just mean that to people (and there… Read more »

Jane
Jane
8 years ago
Reply to  Michael

Thanks for the clarification, Michael. It is a shame that your wife’s friend couldn’t be happy for you. I have learned over the years to share financial information and successes only with those who are in the same boat. It makes things easier. For instance, if we paid off our mortgage tomorrow, we would share it with my parents and others who we know have paid off their houses. Otherwise, I think it could lead to hard feelings with, say, with my sister who is struggling financially. It’s too bad that we as people can’t learn to be happy for… Read more »

Sam
Sam
8 years ago
Reply to  Michael

That’s awesome. We and me got a lot of negative comments when we paid off our student loans. Mr. Sam’s loan was low interest, mine was too, and everyone kept telling us we were doing the wrong thing. Some were actually mean about it but who cares. We are debt free except for the mortgage (working on that next) and its a great feeling.

Bess
Bess
8 years ago
Reply to  Michael

I don’t know, I think this response is par for the course…though I haven’t encountered anything really nasty, I think there’s an overall assumption that when you achieve a financial goal you must have had some opportunity that everyone else didn’t have. I’m paying off my student loans this year after working my way up through comparatively low-paying, unrewarding jobs for several years, living in an expensive city where it’s hard to cut costs, to get to a job that I like with reasonable pay. The automatic assumption is that I must have had a break somewhere, but the truth… Read more »

Jaime
Jaime
8 years ago
Reply to  Michael

Actually this happened to my mom when she started making money with her business, some of her friends and acquaintances got very jealous.

I think that’s why when people get to a certain level of success they start associating with people of their level of success or status.

Its sad how people can’t be happy for each other. Why do people have to be petty? Honestly the story of you pay off the house ought to have inspired your wife’s friend.

Short arms long pockets
Short arms long pockets
8 years ago

Congratulations! I find it inspiring that you have been able to achieve success while still following your ideas and principles.
I’d also like to commend QinStreet for retaining the integrity of the site and enabling you to continue in your own voice. I wish there were more corporations that understood that doing right can and does result in doing well.
I feel like I’m missing something from the article though. Why are you able to reveal this information today? Has the non-disclosure agreement ended? I’m curious as to the timing.

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago

No special reason for revealing today of all days. It just feels right. The business reasons for the NDA have faded (and, in fact, QuinStreet has begun to publicize ownership of GRS), so more and more people are hearing the news. That means that at last, I can share this with readers. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a while!

barnetto
barnetto
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

I imagine this disclosure in some ways gives Quinstreet an advantage over their competitors that keeping everything under NDA would not have accomplished.

If they’re still acquiring blogs, it must be very reassuring to owners who would worry about the direction their blogs could take under new ownership.

David C
David C
8 years ago

JD, Please let me extend congratulations on your success. You have earned every bit of it. I discovered your blog late November of 2007 and have been an avid reader since. I have learned a lot from you, escpecially, “Do what works for you”. I am not totally out of debt yet (pesky mortgage), but reading your story and reader’s stories have been a lot of inspiration. I understand how personal tragedy can be a major catalyst for change, both good and bad. I think you have chosed the good path and I wish you all the best in everything… Read more »

Elizabeth
Elizabeth
8 years ago

Ahh. A lot of things are making sense now. Like some of the others, I didn’t clue in about the sale until recently.

Congrats on your success!

Ron
Ron
8 years ago

JD,

Can you speak a bit more about the Investment Broker you worked with? Would you recommend them to someone else in your shoes ?

Thanks,

Ron

Elisabeth
Elisabeth
8 years ago
Reply to  Ron

I am interested in this as well. Not the specific investment broker him/herself, but how you go about finding such a person. I know people who handle investments, but none that I would trust to be savvy enough to know how to auction a business or advise on multiple offers.

Robert
Robert
8 years ago

Nice story it’s my dream to work from home and be free from corporate. JD You’ve helped, mentored, and inspired a great number of people.

James
James
7 years ago
Reply to  Robert

I agree with Robert, working from home is my ultimate goal! I came across GRS a few months back and a lot of the articles I have read on this site has motivated me and helped me tremendously! Reading this post made me realize that working from home blogging and becoming successful is possible. The best part is you have helped a lot of people by providing us with helpful knowledge. I am happy for you J.D. I am happy that you were able to get what you deserved with the whole deal and be able to share your experience… Read more »

Andy
Andy
8 years ago

Not gonna lie, JD, jealous! You have achieved what everybody wants, and that is the ability to not have to ever worry about money again. I imagine it must be the most liberating, almost childlike, sense of calm that few of us once we reach adulthood ever realize. Congrats!

Jenna
Jenna
8 years ago
Reply to  Andy

Well Said Andy! I think that its great that you were able to reward yourself with the sale after all your hard work you put in! You definitely deserve it for helping others like us! I’m glad everything worked out the way they did for you and GRS!

Elle
Elle
8 years ago

Congratulations on your success!!

I commented on Donna’s article yesterday about how I love her writing. I appreciate you both because of the way you include your personal stories and provide useful information at the same time (and Donna is hilarious–a freezer in the bedroom named Chester, how funny is that!). Thanks for being open with your readers, and I consider your success an inspiration.

Merinda
Merinda
8 years ago

I just wanted to say congratulations as well. I think I’ve been reading since about 2008. I’m sure you’re happy to get both these big things off your chest, and I look forward to reading more content from you. (Not that I mind the staff writers!)

Stephen
Stephen
8 years ago

Wow – what a surprising way to start my morning! Like another reader said, this is second only to the divorce posting a few weeks ago. What will JD share next? Moving to a Mars colony? I was afraid you were going to announce that you would no longer be affiliated with the site, so I was pleasantly surprised to read instead that you may be writing more in the future. All that said, a big congratulations on the sale of the site. I enjoyed reading about the negotiations and your thoughts behind the entire process. And I am very… Read more »

Jessica Peters
Jessica Peters
8 years ago

JD, I have not read your site for very long but once I got into it I read it every time there is a new post (whether it is from you or one of the other contributors) and it has really helped me. I am a college student who is not in debt to school loans. I have one credit card that only has a $750 dollar limit and I have never come close to maxing it out. With the help of this site, I saved up enough money to get out on my own (only renting, but it was… Read more »

Sebastian
Sebastian
8 years ago

Bravo, well done.
I have to admit though that I liked the blog much more when you were the only writer. For the last years I have spent much less time on GRS.

Rail
Rail
8 years ago

Congratulations JD. Hard to believe its been 5 yrs. since I started visiting this site. I must say that the fiscal info shared on this site is what made me come here, but Kris writing about the garden is what kind of “sealed the deal”. The variety of subjects and free flow of ideas are what makes this site a joy to participate in, and I hope that will not change in the future. You have put a lot into GRS and it realy is something to be proud of. Thank you for all the info and inspiration over these… Read more »

JD L
JD L
8 years ago

From one J.D. to another, congratulations! I’ve been a reader for several years and always appreciate your openness and candidness. I’m glad to know about QuinStreet and how they have helped you live your dream despite your hardships, and I’ll follow an ad or two for both you *and* QuinStreet now!

Vic
Vic
8 years ago

I came across this site when I first started working 3 years ago, I wish I had come upon it sooner. The content I’ve read here has helped me tremendously.

As one of the silent admirers and avid readers I want to say congratulations on all of your success JD! It is well deserved!

lorakathleen
lorakathleen
8 years ago

As another fairly silent reader, I also want to say congrats and I’m looking forward to having you back on the site more!

tom
tom
8 years ago

Wow…

I’ve been reading this site since it’s inception, or around there, and have seen it grow into a huge successful venture. I didn’t really think about the addition of staff writers as a sign that you sold the site and were looking to leave. I think that’s a great testament to QuinStreet continuing with your vision.

A late congratulations on the sale!

One question I now have is, where does your current income come from? Do you get paid as a contributor?

J.D. Roth
J.D. Roth
8 years ago
Reply to  tom

I think of my work more as an editor than as a contributor. Does that make sense? I actually don’t know much about the financial arrangements with the staff writers. I have no role in that. But my own income comes from the work I do to guide the direction of the site, to do PR, and, of course, to write articles like this one.

tom
tom
8 years ago
Reply to  J.D. Roth

Makes sense…

QuinStreet pays your salary then?

Brent
Brent
8 years ago
Reply to  tom

“QuinStreet pays me a modest salary to manage Get Rich Slowly.”

Rob+Bennett
Rob+Bennett
8 years ago

Congratulations, J.D. Your story is an inspiration to all bloggers. The company that bought you out is lucky that you have stayed around. The other bloggers here are good. But your writing is special. It’s your writing that is the secret ingredient here. You are right in referring to the special ingredient as “Story.” I am not sure that you grasp how hard it is for others to replicate that. Others see your success and try. It is very hard to pull off. I believe it is a personalty type thing. Many of the writers in this field are of… Read more »

A
A
8 years ago
Reply to  Rob+Bennett

Had to laugh when I read that paragraph about the personality. When I took sociology in college, our professor made us take the test for MBTI and I ended up being INTJ and I’m an engineer.

Wes
Wes
8 years ago

Thanks for the peek behind the curtain, J.D., and congrats. This story is a helpful explanation for why the site seemed to go downhill (for lack of a better term) over the last couple of years. As a reader since 2008, I noticed that the content had become far less personal and much more disjointed (due to multiple authors) and shallow (i.e., articles that seem like SEO bait, like “How To Stock Your Liquor Cabinet on the Cheap”). I’m glad that you’ll be coming back to the forefront of the site. Sorry if that seems like a backhanded compliment; I… Read more »

Jeffrey Trull
Jeffrey Trull
8 years ago

Thanks for sharing, JD! Congrats on selling the site and achieving many of your financial dreams in doing so! I don’t hold it against you at all, and I’m very happy that you’ve stayed involved (I’m not sure I would’ve become a regular reader if you hadn’t). I’m looking forward to reading more from you soon, too!

Alex
Alex
8 years ago

Hello J.D. I have been an occasional reader since about 2008 when the financial crisis left me in ruins. I don’t usually comment on blogs but feel I should wish you good luck and thanks for the work you have done. We are about the same age and I felt a kinship with you and your struggle to get out of dept, your vegetable garden, the little bits of your personal life. I’m sad about the divorce, I feel I am losing two friends. Life is short. Enjoy your travels.

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