Royalties: How the Average Person Can Work Once and Get Paid Over and Over and Over

goldeneggsThe holy grail of financial management has been to find a system, a magic bullet, or a golden key that will require work in the beginning but pay off forever –sort of a goose to lay the golden egg. There are legitimate ways to make extra money but they mostly require a continual input of work to function.

Artisans in many creative fields receive the benefits of royalties and other licensing agreements. By working on a song, a book, a screenplay, or software for a period of time, these craftspeople get paid for their work multiple times (except for pirated versions of their work).

The real question is: can the average person like you and me develop a “royalty” system that pays us over and over for work we do only once? Does a system like that actually exist? Yes it does, but maybe not in the form you’re thinking.

The average person can get “royalties” from:

  • Budgeting
  • Insurance shopping
  • Savings accounts
  • Refinancing a mortgage
  • Reducing expenses


Spend some time setting up a YNAB budget, and get ready to get “paid” over and over. Seriously, the minutes you spend formulating your spending plan will come back to you in the form of recaptured dollars over and over. You cannot recapture these dollars unless you know where they’re going. Once you’ve caught them and plugged the leaks, you can redirect those dollars into a savings account and later into a well diversified investment plan. The positives from a YNAB budget just keep on compounding.

Insurance shopping

Just spend a little time shopping around on for your many different insurance needs. It costs nothing to shop and compare prices and coverage. The savings you find is money in your pocket.

Car Insurance shops highly regarded and reputable companies like Progressive, Allstate, Farmers, Liberty Mutual, Nationwide and others to then deliver auto insurance quotes tailored to your needs. It is ridiculously easy to use.

Homeowner’s Insurance

Don’t stop with auto insurance — by moving on to your other big insurance expenses (like homeowners), you can get “paid” over and over. Again, you can use just like this guy did.

All other insurance

From renters to business, from life to health, can help you save cash each month on your insurance expenses. By taking advantage of those savings, you’re developing your own “royalties” just like celebrities.

Savings accounts

How much is your current savings account paying? The average passbook savings rate (according to, is a dismal one quarter of one percent (0.26%). Currently I’m getting 5 times the national average in my ING account with the opportunity to earn more through referrals! If you’d like a referral that will pay you $25 to open an account with ING, send me an email via my contact form and I’ll send you the details. Switching to a higher interest savings account is yet another way to get paid over and over for an action you do only once.

Mortgage Refinancing

I recently refinanced my mortgage after using Lending Tree. Though I didn’t use one of their lenders, I WAS able to use their quoted rates to negotiate a better rate for myself. This simple act required a lot of paperwork ONCE, but it will pay me $200/month for the rest of my mortgage term. That’s a royalty! (and I didn’t “tap” my equity either)

Reducing expenses

Any expense you can eliminate is money in the bank. Just like old Ben Franklin once said, “A penny saved is a penny earned.” That used to be true — before Congress passed the 16th amendment and hit us with the income tax — today it’s more like “A penny saved is 1.43 pennies earned!”

Where can you reduce your expenses?

Doing just a little work to save just a few bucks here and there can produce “average person royalties” for years. Are you willing to put in the time?

What other ways can we develop “average person royalties?”

Photo by sean courtney L

This post was included in the Carnival of Personal Finance #242: Fun Tax Facts at Cash Money Life! Thanks Patrick!

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