Why Gift Card Reselling Probably Isn’t Worth the Time & Effort

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gift card reselling worth it

Is Gift Card Reselling the Dud of Manufactured Spending?

One of the biggest constants in the miles & points game is change. Back when I first started, the main way to earn huge amounts of so called free travel was to sign up for a lot of credit cards. Then Bluebird and Vanilla Reloads at Office Depot came along and suddenly it made sense to pay attention to this thing called manufactured spending.

Of course that is a massive oversimplification of the journey, but somewhere along the line the category known as manufactured spending or MS grew from a casual pastime to a giant behemoth. I am not saying it never existed before (it definitely did), but the focus wasn’t as vast and the opportunities seemingly weren’t as abundant.

The Bluebird Era

gift card reselling worth it

So here we are several years into the “Bluebird Era” and more people are doing this than ever before. This has lead to a shorter cycle between the discovery of deals and their death, but it also has brought fresh blood and fresh ideas into the game.

Among these ideas are new and innovative ways to manufacture spend. Instead of just buying reloads or Visa gift cards, you can buy and sell merchandise, tickets and yes even merchant gift cards. To be fair, all three are pretty much the same thing, although they tend to involve different processes.

Gift Card Reselling Is Risky & Unprofitable for Most

Over the past few months I have really embraced gift card reselling in an effort to understand it. As a result of that, you may have noticed more articles about it on Miles to Memories. I try to understand as many methods as possible so that I can share them with you, but also so I know how to pursue the right course of action for myself. Today, after having done this for awhile, I am ready to declare my verdict on gift card reselling. It is more trouble than it is worth in most cases and for most people.

Don’t get me wrong, I believe there is value in buying and selling gift cards, I am just not sure it is worth the time it takes to achieve any sort of significant spend. Gift card reselling is a great opportunity to make a few bucks during great deals, but it is not a great way to manufacture spend. (At least in the quantities needed to generate huge amounts of points.)

Consulting the Experts

gift card reselling worth it

Don’t believe me? Well lets take a look at data presented by some of the experts. Noah at Money Metagame recently completed his debriefing of the 20K Amex Business Platinum Challenge. To reach $20K in spend, he sold 70 different brands of merchant gift cards and spent a total of about 16 hours. Once everything pans out, he should make a profit of about 5%.

So on the surface that doesn’t seem bad, but in reality he only made about $70 per hour. I only use Noah as an example, because I consider him to be an expert. For the average person to achieve $20K in spend, it would take a significantly higher amount of time and would generate a lot less profit if any at all.

Then we have Chasing the Points who only made about $105 on his $20K in spend and just today announced he is going to shift to merchandise reselling. The truth is that merchandise reselling carries about the same amount of risk, but has the potential for a significantly greater upside. That conversation is for another post though.

Maybe I’m Just Tired

One of the things you get here on Miles to Memories is my honest opinion from the trenches. I am not trying to convince someone who is doing well at selling gift cards to stop. Instead, I am trying to present a real view of what is involved so people understand the true risks of this stuff. It can be a time suck yes, but you are also “playing” with real money.

Yesterday I wrote about a company called Gift Card Rescue who seems to be giving a bunch of people (myself included) a run around about the status of their checks. A few weeks ago it was Gift Card Zen who decided they would cancel a bunch of sales because they had promised to buy cards at too high a price. There are of course many more stories like this. The entire space is overexposed which means more risk, less opportunity and more frustration.

Profit vs. Simplicity

gift card reselling worth it

I know a lot of you would just prefer to pay $4-$5 for a $500 Visa gift card which can be liquidated to Bluebird or REDbird. For this challenge it would have cost $160-$200 to generate $20K in spend that way. Not bad overall and I could argue that you would spend about the same amount of time as Noah in liquidating it. So he made $700 while you would lose $160-$200. Spending ~$200 to earn 150K points sounds good, but so does making $700, which means there is no right or wrong answer.

I’ll Still Cover Good Deals

Miles to Memories is really a blog about all sorts of deals and thus I will still write about good gift card reselling opportunities when I see them. I have never really delved too deep into the more complicated stuff and for now will continue on the same path. I’ll let you know when something is a killer deal, but will try not to waste your time with the stuff that I deem not to be worth it. In other words, business as usual.

Conclusion

With all of the problems we have seen lately with gift card resellers changing offers and not sending checks, I now believe most people will probably want to avoid gift card reselling for the most part. Like with anything there will be low hanging fruit type offers that just about anyone could have some fun with, but floating thousands of dollars in inventory just to manufacture spend probably won’t make a lot of sense for most of you.


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35 COMMENTS

  1. Good recap on gift card reselling.

    The conclusion I came too when it was all said and done is that it’s worth it for me when pursuing minimum spends, but not to just generate points at 1-2x. I’d much rather cycle through some gift cards at home than take a trip to Target/Walmart for spending requirements, but there is definitely more effort involved in my approach.

    With the ease of getting big bonuses from credit cards and bank bonuses, it’s just not worth my time to resell gift cards at the low profit margin I get versus time spent. Merchandise reselling is something I’ve had my eye on, but I’m curious to see how Vinh from MilesPerDay did with the $20k challenge first. My current thought is that I’ll reach the same conclusion with merchandise unless the profit margin is really up there.

    • Wow Really!? I was just doing research and trying to learn how to do this because I am tired of stupid people at Target/WM and broken kiosk. I follow MtM and MoneyMetaGame all the time so I was gonna go ALL IN on gift card reselling. Now I read this from both of you guys. Hm. Makes me think now.

      Again, I dont have access to unlimited RB/BB via friends family, and wouldnt want to either since I hate driving to places I would never go to otherwise. Total waste of my time. Especially when you have idiots at OD/OM/Staples.

      I have read the nice FM blog post about how to increase spend on CC, but I really need a sustainable/streamline-able way to get $50k-$100k per month.

      I wish I could just buy a $100K car, put it on my CC then resale on eBay and bam. Done for the month!!

      Man. I guess the key is to be flexible, change is constant, and always look for other avenues for growth.

      • Have you tried merchandise reselling? If you work hard enough you could get into your desired range with some profit.

        • I will look into it. I guess I can make my garage into a warehouse to hold inventory! Key will be turnover/liquidation timeline. Otherwise, I better be able to float the funds for awhile.

          • You should check out Amazon FBA. They take care of everything for you. Just ship them the products.

  2. I agree with you. I decided to try it to see for myself what it was like. After 3 months I’ve learned it’s too much work for little return. I’m glad I did it though because I know the process when the really good deals comes along. Deals that give me big gas points and that Am Ex deal at Smart and Final was nice. Will also watch for ecards that I can buy and sell for points and profit in a matter of minutes from my laptop.

  3. I thought about gift card reselling but decided it’s not worth it for me since I live in Hawaii. It takes an additional 1-2 days for regular mail alone to get to people.

  4. QUOTED FROM ABOVE: “I know a lot of you would just prefer to pay $4-$5 for a $500 Visa gift card which can be liquidated to Bluebird or REDbird. For this challenge it would have cost $80-$100 to generate $20K in spend that way.”

    Man, I would check my math on this unless I am really missing something here!

    • No you are right. Somehow that 20 number stuck in my head, but it would take 40 cards. It should be double that. I stand by the sentiment, because I had originally done the math in my head correct, but somehow it didn’t make it into the post. Thanks Carl. It has been corrected.

  5. Also, the usual cards that I could count on to at least break even (in the past) have plummeted in resale value. I’m sitting on a stack of them for a while now, and they have yet to rebound.

  6. I always appreciate your honest opinions and it goes without saying your posts reflect deep thought and consideration of all angles of the topic at hand. I have to say though that on this subject I have the complete opposite opinion in regards to gift card selling and whether or not it’s a worthwhile pursuit.

    I’ve been doing it relatively heavy over the last few months and overall have only done it this year. As with most people, a large chunk comes from ebay. I am a bulk seller with three sites so that should be thrown out there as far as my bias and perspective as I have free shipping, direct deposit payouts, same rate for ecode as physical and personal reps to help me when there’s an issue. Even if I were doing this on a much smaller scale I would still justify my position on this topic.

    In a nutshell, I am an opportunist when it comes to gift card arbitrage. This means that I’m not going to factor 20k challenges into the equation and I won’t buy if there’s not enough meat on the bones. Mind you it took me a little while to come to this conclusion and stop myself on some deals from pulling the trigger. Also, with that 20k challenge, you have to factor in the value of the amex points since this was part of the reason for hitting it hard and accepting more tedious deals for gift card arbitrage. Noah even stated as such that if you factor in the value of the amex points then your hourly is well in excess of $100/hour. Never mind the fact it takes any fun out of it when you feel you’re forcing things beyond the point you’d otherwise do, all because of the pressure of a huge minimum spend requirement. You don’t call it a 20k “challenge” for nothing!

    I’ve had my bumps (lost over $400 in one deal) but I look at it all as a learning process and how it all helps me in the long run with MS oriented endeavors and the learning curve. As with any MS, I’ve learned that the path of least resistance is the one I prefer to take, even if I lose out on profit potential. This is evidenced by the fact that I avoid Staples/OD/OM now. I also avoid (like the plague) buying used gift cards. I’d prefer to sell a gift card at a lower rate if I meant a less risky transaction that included payment in under 72 hours from the point of sale rather than get extra from another exchange that is less reputable and would require me to float funds longer.

    The 4x ebay deal over the last two days will wind up being $740+ profit for me when it’s all said and done. I had to float $9,500 to do so but perhaps being a former online professional poker player has me comfortable with floating funds in the pursuit of +ev (expected value) opportunities. The gift cards purchased are relatively stable and I don’t anticipate a large drop between now and the point of selling. I was able to clear one 50k Citi bonus and a stack of AGC purchased from BBVA cards as well. Also didn’t exclusively use ebay gift cards so my $5k/180 velocity limit isn’t completely squashed and I didn’t experience any Paypal unpublished velocity issues as noted by Chasing The Points in his blog (because of mixed payments w/ ebay gc).

    The Home Depot offer not that long ago, for example, put me in a position to buy over $1,000 in shell gift cards. I sold them to SaveYa, via direct ACH (Santander $20/mo DD bonus requirement fulfilled) and made a profit. Note that the difference between buying Shell gift cards and VGC was only 1% and I’d have to cross my fingers and hope to liquidate all 12 gift cards easily! The route I went allowed me to go home and punch in an order for 12 cards, ask my rep for a free 2-day FedEx label and drop them off and wait for payment. Not to mention the fact that best case I was looking at probably close to half an hour to liquidate 12 gift cards if you factor in going to Kate and spending 2 minutes per card….and that’s assuming no one else pops up behind me needing the machine, to which I’d let them use it before proceeding. Mind you, some aren’t even lucky enough to have a working Kate. For those w/ a Target nearby, do you really want to deal with 12 $100 VGC and convince the cashier to let you unload them all? To be honest I probably wouldn’t have even capitalized on this Home Depot amex offer if it weren’t for the Shell gift card route. This is just one example of what I mean by complimentary and path of least resistance even at a sacrifice in profit, but there are many more.

    The way I see gift card arbitrage going for me down the road is one of a complimentary approach to MS. Buying and selling allows me to go at my own pace and if necessary avoid even lucrative deals if it’s just not a good life balance at the time. I’ve never liked the idea of having to buy gift cards in stores and liquidate them and cross my fingers that the machine is working or that the system at the cash register isn’t down and/or changed that requires a quick trigger finger to get to the next screen. Or the lovely double-slide of the card and hide the gift card from the cashier. It all is tedious and to some extent makes me feel like I’m having to be sneaky about it. Even when RB cc loads were working I had two instances where the wife, our <1 year old daughter and I hopped in the car and went to Target and were told the system was down.

    I personally have very little free time. Anyone with young kids knows exactly what I mean. The more I can do in my underwear and from a computer at any hour of the day, the better! I'll definitely keep my eyes out for more gift card arbitrage opportunities if they arise AND make sense from a time-value perspective.

    One other note, which is somewhat related to this post, is the recent discussion on value of time and whether or not it's worth going after the small deals (Matt at Saverocity sparked the blogosphere debate). I believe that DoC made a great point, and I'm somewhat in that same boat. If I'm tired and have limited mental bandwidth to provide to any given deal, I'm going to go after the small deals that make enough financial and practical sense given my circumstances. I don't deal with small MIR offers or anything below $10 in value. I did however capitalize on 15 Amex Checkout offers across Ticketmaster, Sabon and Newegg. My wife didn’t mind the $150 in free Sabon too. A scalable small deal that allowed me to watch a tv show while clicking buttons was something that I definitely found enjoyable and that’s where the sustainability is with MS if you ask me.

    As with MS in general, all of this is highly YMMV and depends very much so on one's lifestyle, expectations, opportunity costs and circumstances. I just wanted to throw this out there to add to this discussion because I think there are many valid points from both sides of this coin and it's up to each and every one of us to really internalize data points from others before (or if) trying it for ourselves.

    • Very well put, you hit on the major benefits that really set gift card arbitrage apart from the other forms of MS. Being able to click a few buttons at home and generate lots of points and a little cash put it far ahead of the traditional MS (VGCs and Birds) that gets talked about so often. I haven’t done any pure MS like that myself, but I don’t know why I’d start running around to different stores trying to generate points (often at a small loss) if I can just resell gift cards from the comfort of my home. It just seems so much easier.

      I’m still on the fence with actively pursuing deals and it really comes down to how much free time I have. The $20k challenge left me with a sour taste, but I think at a minimum I’ll continue moving several grand per month just on the easy winners. When I’m idle on the computer reading reddit or whatever else, it almost seems irresponsible to not glance around for easy deals and I occasionally find some really easy wins.

      I think the biggest thing I’ve decided was to not force myself into less than stellar deals just to attempt to keep growing my volume. You are spot on when you talk about the life balance when going after deals. It’s awful trying to keep up with every deal when life is busy, but I really enjoy sitting back and seeking out some opportunities on the nights that life is moving a little slower. As long as I can keep a balance going where it’s easy to pass on deals that don’t make sense at the time, reselling gift cards is something I’ll continue to use to my advantage.

      • The difference is that the Risk with GC reselling is the float and too many variables. WIth VGC/Amex GC, I cleared over $50k in a week and no float issues. I understand this is not typical but I live in a very friendly MS area, although it is getting harder. I am not a fan of sending in GC via the mail and waiting for my funds. In a single day, I would buy the VGC wiht AGCs, load same day or next day and send off to CC. I don’t trust my funds in other people’s hands. Gift Card Rescue is a prime example of this.

        • Hey RL. You got my attn with “$50k in a week and no float issues”. Also agree with your views of risks and too much YMMV to be consistent.

          You mind providing just a little more detail and time commitment for that volume?

          So youre doing deals/portals to get AGC then buying variable GC whenever youre allowed then what is the liquidation method to get back the funds? RB/BB and shitload MO which then pays directly to the CC via the corresponding bank branch visit without actually depositing to your own account?

          Doing high MO volume carries risks as well. Risks that may not be worth it.

          • I have considered MOs but never used it with the BB/RB era. Too much compliance issues when dealing with MOs with the banks. As I stated I live in a very friendly MS area, sorry for not disclosing but you can understand. I do over $100k a month and takes about probably 20 hours. You are correct with the AGC’s via portal to VGC to BB/RB back to CC so my cost is usually negative for miles or increased for cash back. I am the exception as i have access to over 20 BB/RB cards and I built relationships at the local WM/TG stores where I can load as much as I want. You’ll be surprised how a friendly demeanor can help go a long way.

          • Thanks for sharing man. Appreciate it. MO is no go for me too. Not worth the risks. But $100k/mo is really the Ace level I want to get to. 20 RB/BB is pretty ridiculous too. Nice man. Glad you have that. Also nice your live in a MS friendly town. Keep it up.

        • Definitely not typical to be in a market that allows you to move that kind of money w/o money orders. Smile or no smiles, you’re definitely in a favorable location!

          There are a lot of risks with buying and selling VGC/MGC too:

          – Inquiries for fraud
          – To and from places on your trip and potential for (car) accidents, theft, loss of gift cards in your huge pockets or binders you carry etc..
          – Cards that were tampered with and leaving you with a headache if you have to request a refund

          Keep in mind you’re also floating funds when you’re stockpiling AGC’s. With many of the gc arbitrage routes you can buy ebay gc right before purchase.

          Also, a large chunk of cards I sell are accepted as ecodes, meaning no physical cards are required to be sent by mail. When I buy ecodes (like all of the Staples gc on PPDG or eBay) I’m risking nothing and floating funds for probably 2-3 business days. For the cards I do send via snail mail I always have tracking and I take pictures of every card sold so that in the event it’s lost I’ll get replacements or worst case use the gift card to buy goods or another gift card.

          Gift Card Rescue was a company that had bad reviews before the blow up over the last 1-2 months. Sticking with the larger exchanges is going to put you in better company. I’ll always sacrifice profit if it’s justified by completing a transaction with less risk of fallout, such as my selling the Phillips gc to SaveYa instead of GCR. If I ever run into a problem I can call someone and have it handled.

          The MS umbrella has many types of deals and opportunities and what works for some won’t work for others. That’s one huge point I’ve learned over the last year. It sounds like you have a good thing going for you and should stick with what is working and created the best life balance possible. Around here, there’s no way I could reach a fraction of what you’re doing. Even if I could, I probably wouldn’t do it because of the time commitment and logistics required w/ my family that put me in a situation where MS’ing from a computer is the best route.

          • Just curious, do you avoid cards such as BP that won’t replace lost cards? I had the number of a card my husband lost and they refused to do anything for me, in keeping with the terms on the back. As far as I know I need the physical card to use at a gas station, no?

      • Learning when and when not to pull the trigger has been something I’ve not yet fully mastered (in general) but I as you mention its great gap filler when you need to get somewhere a bit faster and conventional MS isn’t doing it. Tools in a tool bag is the way I see it. Some might be used more frequently than others at any given time and it doesn’t necessarily mean I have to take the same tools to each and every job (or that one tool is better than the other).

    • Solid Snake post man. Just like Noah noted.

      I guess the valuable insight here is that you have to try it and push myself to go beyond the learning curve which is really high within the GC reselling game and come to your own conclusions. Doesnt sound easy and looks like it requires a shitload of mental capacity in the beginning.

      I can totally relate to you because I also fucking hate driving around and being ninja about RB/BB reloading and GC buying and stupid people at Staples. Good n00b experience, but im done with that. I need something to pump out $50k-$100k spend per month easily on autopilot and everything has to be streamlined. I seriously hate the concept of YMMV. Thats the kind of shit that will kill your time. There needs to be a strategy with a consistently high success rate even though its crazy challenging to learn in the beginning. Sounds like gift card arbitrage can be the answer. Or I would like it to be the answer anyway.

      Although I dont have a kid, I have a startup in San Francisco. Therefore, I dont have time for random stupid crazy crap when there are better alternatives with the use of my time. For me, its not about Work/Life Balance. Its about Work/Work Balance (AKA Opportunity Cost). Thats why I am always deciding which currency to MS – Fiat USD or Points/Miles. For me, I dont have time to travel so I actually dont really need to bother with this game at all. Unnecessary for me. However, I want to send my mom to various places around the world since she hasnt been. Therefore, I play this game.

      If I can have developers write scripts for GC arbitrage, I would, but first I need to understand this game and the analogue aspects. So much to learn here and no guarantees you will be good at it.

      I guess its time to frequent DOs and MeetUps like Silicon Valley Hackathons. Hope to see everyone on this blog sometime soon.

      • I live in Solano County…. I’d imagine you have to have that work/work balance to pay your rent/mortgage payment! The cost of living in SF has become absurd… I was reading an article on a shortage of teachers in the area because of barrier to entry w/ the housing market there… for another time and day I suppose.

        • Solano County? We should chill sometime. Get a Meet-Up going.

          But yea. Everyday is Monday for me. No rest. Team NO SLEEP. Everything you hear about SF is true. High Roller VIP Chinese coming over here with 100% cash buying up properties like its monopoly. Bidding up. Not down. Who does that for homes? 20% premium over ask? Fuck. But who knows where that money comes from. Casino Royale all up in here. So bad that a real estate TV show is here now shooting. Now its gonna get worse with that million dollar listing reality show crap going on.

          Anyway, Bay Area is a wasteland for MS dude. So much ghetto-ness. Fraud everywhere.

          If you head over to Lodi, Tracy and Stockton, you have better luck. Those people are so slow and chilling there. I feel sorry for them sometimes. haha. I tell everyone there to MOVE OUT!

          Anyway, whos down to airBnB for the summer with me at a MS friendly city and we go ALL OUT like Oceans 13 and run secret MS operations then move on to the next city.

          I think it would be pretty badass. Im sure it already happens. MS masters create a “business” and all run under the cloak of “consulting” darkness.

          • I’m in! Located over in the east bay let me know if you’re interested in meeting up sometime.

  7. To be honest, I was exhausted by just reading your posts…haha! It really seemed like a lot of work for small returns. I do small-time BB, which is enough of a time sucker as I don’t have any Kates and unloading requires standing in many lines, often with cards which won’t go through even after I override with the “Change Payment” button. I only do it when the deals make a profit. Best recent deal was $500 VISA at Food Lion with $10 grocery coupon and a 6% CB on my AMEX. Even at $34.41 profit per GC, I’m not sure it was worth my time. But with two daughters in colleges that charge 3% for CC payments, its the only way to reasonably pay tuition. In any case, thanks for doing all the heavy lifting for all of us!

    • Two daughters AND in college? I believe you have bigger problems much larger than MS. Good Luck. jk.

      Since you have tuition, thats a nice MS route. But you dont need to pay 3%. I suggest you use Plastiq.
      It will save you a lot. Look into it.

      Portal to AGC (up to 2.25% cashback) then use AGC to pay via Plastiq with fees (up to 2.5%) then Plastiq cuts a check.

      No need to pay 3%. Blogs have been written about this. I recommend it for large tuition payments.

      • Thanks Ninja X. I won’t pay the 3% fee, which is why I use BB. But there are many payments which I do by check because I can’t MS enough on BB. Thanks for suggesting Plastiq. I’ve been thinking of looking into it; there is even a link I saw for a 1.99% intro fee. I will definitely try it now!

        • Yea, there is an intro promotion link via the Frequent Miler blog. Hopefully, you can get in that lowered rate.

          Bandwidth on BB/RB is definitely a problem. Thats why people get friends/family involved and try to keep those cards only for pure MS while using other clever ways to pay bills instead. One thing to note is that Plastiq doesnt allow you to pay CC companies. Thats why people buy AGC to break even the fees, but still pay bills and not use up the bandwidth on the birds.

          You should get your daughters involved and all your extended family. Much better when you have a gang.

  8. Yea, there is an intro promotion link via the Frequent Miler blog. Hopefully, you can get in that lowered rate.

    Bandwidth on BB/RB is definitely a problem. Thats why people get friends/family involved and try to keep those cards only for pure MS while using other clever ways to pay bills instead. One thing to note is that Plastiq doesnt allow you to pay CC companies. Thats why people buy AGC to break even the fees, but still pay bills and not use up the bandwidth on the birds.

    You should get your daughters involved and all your extended family. Much better when you have a gang.

  9. Question for the experts out there. Started MS 2 months ago and for the most part is progressing smoothly. One question though, I cannot get the big discounts through the portals (2.25%) because AMEX will not allow me to purchase their business gift cards with a SS#. They require an EIN and have turned me down every time I have tried! I even own some rental properties (a business in itself) which the gov’t classifies as passive income not requiring an EIN. Try arguing this with an AMEX rep though who makes these final decisions in India or Tim-buc-too! Those of you without a business or EIN, how are you going about purchasing these cards?

    • Ron, my wife does not have a business and she puts in her SS# and where it asks for business name she puts “None” and has never been denied. I was denied a couple times when I first started and I do the same thing she does and have gone 12 in a row without a problem.

    • Hey Ron.

      Just like John said, you can use your SSN. Ive used both and plenty of denials. You just have to keep trying.
      The denials are frustrating and its not reliable in the beginning.

      I suggest you read “Complete guide to Amex gift cards” by FrequentMiler. Really good resource. Google it.

      Also, your comment on rental properties. I dont understand what you mean by “gov’t classifies as passive income not requiring an EIN”. Who told you this? I am not sure the details of your situation, but first of all, you should always speak with your CPA and Corp Attorneys. Dont listen to what the govt requires and doesnt require because they are not there to help you.

      If you dont have an EIN for your rental properties, I would be very very concerned. Even if your rental properties are strictly for families and relatives who pay you rental income. A LLC should be set up as a pass-thru entity and you should certainly get an EIN. If you are using your SSN, that tells me you have no protection whatsoever. You have no legal structure to limit liability. Im going to assume you have shitload insurance and an umbrella policy of $5MM MINIMUM.

      Are you going sole proprietor? I hope not.

      Without an EIN/LLC/C Corp you’ve really got nothing to protect you. Although the courts look carefully to see if the LLC is really a separate entity as opposed to an alter-ego of the owner. Having an EIN and separate checkbooks helps establish that it is a real company. You should apply for an EIN to separate personal and business accounts.

      I would seriously look at your situation and reassess as needed.

      Good luck to you sir.

      • Thanks for both your help. I will try the “none” for business but I know several of the reps have told me over the phone that a business EIN is required to purchase these and I would need to buy on the consumer side. I’ve probably been denied about a dozen times now trying! Maybe they let women slide by easier than men…you think?

        As far as the EIN goes, I don’t want to pay in quarterly S/S and withholding, that’s the nice thing about rental properties with passive income, the gov’t doesn’t get as deep into your pockets! Yes, shitload of insurance but still much cheaper than paying the gov’t more than required.

        Thanks again.

  10. It obviously didn’t work for you but there’s no need to think that it wont work for others. I happen to know people who sell prepaid mastercards, gift vouchers and experience vouchers an they are earning very good money. Their business is thriving. No need to be a profit of doom!

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