How I make $60,000 a month through YouTube, long-term rental, and Airbnb

  • Gabby Wallace is a former teacher who now runs a YouTube channel and several rental properties.
  • She makes money from online advertisements, sponsorships and courses, as well as bookings on Airbnb.
  • She says she only works 10-15 hours a week and earns an average of $60,000 a month in income.

This narrated essay is based on a conversation with Gabby Wallace, a 38-year-old former teacher turned YouTuber and Airbnb host based in Kansas City, Missouri. Insider verified its past and current monthly revenue streams with documentation. The following has been edited for length and clarity.

I’ve always loved teaching and took that route in college. After graduating with a master’s degree in 2010, I had the opportunity to teach English in Japan. The salary offer was not very high, but I wanted adventure, so I accepted with enthusiasm.

I enjoyed teaching English, and being in Japan helped me understand the need. I wanted to teach in a way that could reach a wider audience, so I started a Youtube channel called Go Natural English and uploaded my first video in April 2011.

Today, Go Natural English has 2.25 million subscribers and averages $15,000 per month in revenue from Google AdSense, referrals, and course sales.

I also own 12 properties. Of these, I earn $20,000 a month in income from my 26 long-term rental units that I financed with my online earnings and a home equity line of credit, or HELOC. My 11 Airbnb units also generate an average of $25,000 in revenue per month. Units can be rooms, apartments or a complete house. I am renting rooms for one of my properties because there is more demand in the Kansas City market. The other properties are for tenants to have a house or apartment to themselves.

My average monthly income is $60,000 per month. I stopped teaching full-time in 2014, and now I’m the sole employee of my rental and online businesses — I work with part-time contractors. I work 10-15 hours a week and only spend my time doing what I love, which is educating on YouTube and managing my properties.

My YouTube channel grew slowly at first

It took a year after launching my channel to reach 1,000 subscribers. In second grade, I had an idea about YouTube and my style. I learned that my grammar point videos weren’t as good as the how to speak confidently videos, and my on technical skills did not perform as well as general skills.

With this knowledge, I was able to grow the channel to 10,000 subscribers by the end of 2012. Despite this growth, I was only making about $1 a month from YouTube AdSense.

In 2013, I returned to the United States to teach at Boston University and ran my YouTube channel as a side hustle. After starting to post regularly twice a month, it grew to 100,000 subscribers by the end of the year.

Around this time, a friend suggested I start an online course to diversify my income. I created and launched a course called “ESL troubleshootingon Udemy in February 2013, which I advertised on YouTube and my social media. I did it myself after researching courses, listening to podcasts, and watching YouTube videos from entrepreneurs such as Pat Flynn and Nathalie Sisson who had done the same.

I loved Boston, but didn’t make enough to live on my own, so I moved back to Japan in 2014. I got a full-time job teaching English at Toyo University in Tokyo with a health insurance, a pension and housing subsidies. .

While looking for ways to make more money in Tokyo, an idea that came to mind was to sublet one of the rooms in my apartment on Airbnb

I had heard about Airbnb through the website CouchSurf and other travellers. I listed my spare room in December 2014, but soon encountered a major problem: the contract I had signed to teach English stated that we were not allowed to earn money with outside jobs. Because there were other foreign teachers living in the same building as me, the news spread easily and I was eventually fired. I had 30 days to leave the country because I no longer had a sponsored visa.

Instead of returning to the United States, I booked a one-way trip to Vietnam. I stayed in Vietnam for three months to limit my expenses, traveled in Asia and Europe for nine months, and continued to develop my YouTube channel and online course. In 2016, I returned to the United States and signed a lease for a two-bedroom apartment in New York.

In New York, I picked up where I left off with Airbnb and rented the second bedroom in my apartment. After two weeks, the owner discovered it and didn’t like it. We decided it was best that I find someone to take over my lease, and we parted ways. I then moved to Kansas City, where part of my family lived.

I was fed up with the rules I had when I was renting, so I bought a house in May 2016

The house cost $50,000 and I paid the $10,000 down payment with savings from my business income.

I had two rooms again and listed one on Airbnb. But this time it was my fucking home and I could do whatever I wanted with it. It gave me an additional income of $1,000 per month. Soon after, I decided I wanted to be a real estate investor and realized Kansas City was a great place to do it.

With the success of my first registration, I purchased a HELOC and purchased a second property in Kansas City for $70,000. I had heard about HELOCs by listening to podcasts and watching YouTube videos as part of my research on real estate investing. The HELOC allowed me to leverage the equity I already had in my first home and not have to dip into my savings. I bought the second house to use as a long term rental.

In 2017, I had online language learning and tutoring companies buying sponsorships on my YouTube channel, and some language learning apps paying for ads. Half of these companies contacted me and I researched half of the other offers. My biggest deal was a one-year, $40,000 sponsorship deal. From 2017 to 2020, I averaged $250,000 in revenue per year from my online businesses and two rental properties.

I don’t pay to market the properties – people have found them organically. As someone who has traveled a lot, I have tried to develop my properties in such a way as to attract tenants like me. I’ve invested in fast WiFi and properties with plenty of space, and focus on longer term stays of two weeks or more, or ideally 30 days or more. What helps is listing places and testing what the market is willing to pay and how they like to book, such as booking in advance or at the last minute, or preferring a room to an entire house.

In early 2020, I purchased two more properties using HELOCs, income from my online activities and my savings, and have grown my portfolio to 12 since then.

I learned to manage my long-term rental atnd Airbnbs remotely as I traveled between Kansas City, Mexico and Brazil as a digital nomad

I love Brazil and Mexico and they both have a low cost of living.

I created repeatable processes and multiple checklists for my cleaners, used automated messages when guests book on the Airbnb app, and kept all payments to local assistants, such as my cleaners and the hands-on people who fix any issues. with the properties, online using various payment applications such as as cash app, Venmoand Zella.

I oversee all communications and administration of my rental properties, such as how my local assistants greet guests. Airbnbs have keyless entrances that can be controlled via WiFi, so I can run my Airbnb business with just my phone.

I have sold three of the properties I have purchased in the past two years and have made a profit of $200,000 on those sales. Two of the properties were never listed on Airbnb – I bought them only to return. The third property was on Airbnb, but I sold it because the market was good and it was a good time to sell. I was able to use part of the profits to buy a house for my mother. It was a big achievement for me – I cry when I think about it.

I have always wanted freedom of time and place. I am grateful for what Airbnb, YouTube and my online business have provided.

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