My plan to give myself a $10K raise in 2015


Back awhile ago, a Wells Fargo employee accidentally CC a lot of people in WFC asking for $10K for himself and his colleagues. Needless to say, his plan probably failed, but won a lot of hearts from his colleagues and me. A few days ago, I read the news that he left WFC. I felt for him because I was in the same shoes a long time. In this company for almost nine years, I’ve gotten a raise of 3% once, then 2/8 times is 2%. While, I am not complaining about my pay being low (I think health care workers are being paid way too much). Now, compared to my colleagues, who get 3-4% raise consistently, it is kind of awful that I don’t get the same “love”. (Some of you might wonder why don’t I leave the job, I have nine reasons to love my job . I am thankful to have a job.)

The one problem I’ve identified is performance evaluation is very subjective. The limiting factor is still the boss. My conclusion, I can’t get the boss to change his mind about me and my work ethics and my contribution to the company. But I still want a pay increase of $10K? That get me to go and open my own company, and play Santa. I’ll just give myself an outstanding rating and an automatic raise of $10,000.

So, the outstanding employee, me, trying to raise this $10,000 to give to myself. Since, I think I’ve maxed out the rent on my principle property. I did some research on the rental and real estate market around my 4-plex.

  • It is renting at 500-1000$ under the current rent market.
  • An apartment of 1 bed, 1 bath cost $150-$350K.
  • A house of 3 beds, 1 bath cost $350-$500K.
  • My apartment complex is in the prime real estate area. Walk to the nearby campus and super great restaurants, bars, and shops. It is within the walking distance to parks, soccer and baseball field, tennis court, lake, and the river. River activities include white water rafting, kayaking, canoeing, fishing, partying, etc.
  • The home price in the area has soared 25-30% since last year.
  • If I give a conservative estimation of each unit, it would be $250K/unit x 4 = Welcome to the millionaire club?!!

Nah, this is still arbitrary number. I’m not looking for capital gain at this point. I’m on my quest of getting $10K raise from last year.

I honored the last year contract that the ex-owner signed with the current renters. But, with each units they move out, I’ve listed the unit 300-400$ above the current rent. Voila $300 x 4 = $1200/mon x 12 month = $14,400. Because I’m listing it higher, the expectation for maintenance is higher. I’m going to spend $4,400 to paint the porch, deck, new carpet, and such to make it look nicer. Here is my $10K.

Now, that I am my own boss, I work equally as hard. So the $10,000 question is is how do I get it? To rent the apartment up of course, and raise the price:

1. I advertise pretty heavily – at different internet websites. 😛

2. I use different strategies. a. Multiple listings with different prices. 😛 So, when I give them a “discount” they are pretty happy to get a “deal” from me. b. I can list each room separately, I can earn more this way.

3. I show the apartment only once a week (a. less time consuming for me so I can still have life outside of work. b. respect for current tenants, and the future tenants love it that I do that. Win-win)/

4. I provide great customer services – quick response, polite, keep everyone feel important, and low rent price than the general market. 😛


For those of you who think it takes two to tangle (I must have done something wrong), my boss probably being objective in evaluation. It could be, but here is an example how I am excellent at my job. My list is comparable to our evaluation form.

– I’m never looking too busy. Because I’ve always done my tasks thoroughly and effectively. I don’t drink coffee, so I don’t take multiple coffee breaks like most of my co-workers. Example: it looks like I’m just sitting at my desk, being lazy, but I’m waiting to hear back from the team to see if they have forgotten to put in the order to feed the neonates or they decide to give them clear liquid instead. I actually communicate with other department, rather than letting some people make mistake, and the little one has to pay for some negligence from a bunch of healthcare provider. I want to be relax, free of problems, other than the problem at hands, so I’ll be calm and nice. So it looks like I’m lazy. But my work always very thorough.

– I saved $2 millions dollars by catching a mistakes that had going on for several months, if I didn’t catch it, it will continue on. We bought an expensive drug for $800/pop, each dose is 4-8 bottles. We dose 3-10 doses per day!! You do the math. (still can’t give me a raise of 3%??! after this, what’s ashame!) I

– I did another project that save an hour each day from the higher pay workers, and simplify the process. (1 hour x 5 days x $50 x 52 weeks x 7 years = $91k (not too shabby)

– I helped my co-worker out a lot, whenever people ask to switch schedule, I’ve always willing.

– I praise nursing each time they catch a mistake from my department. I even go as far as giving “Safety stars” so they can get their deserved raise. It smooths the situation out. Calm their anger. I thank them and thank them. (The mistakes weren’t even mine, but I want to show my department care!! And I can de-escalate the situation as good as anyone else, without making things look like we are hiding things.)

– I don’t get complaints from other department. I only get “thanks” from them. Whenever, there is a swift complaint delay from our department service. I work to get the service up and running as quick as possible. Personally tend to the issue. Oh yeah!! Excellence customer service.

– I took time to earn several advance certifications in my field. Not many people want to do this. But I do. It is part of my forever improving and continuing learning and achieving.

– I put my patients in front. Some people dwelling on policy. I bend over backward to give my patient the best possible care.

– I communicate well and effectively. Say, we have a potential huge security breach. Nobody inform the upper management for six month. When it’s my turn to encounter the issue, I immediately send the email to the big boss and supervisor. Now, what’s interesting is my co-workers didn’t want to sign the email, didn’t want to report. So, clearly the problem comes from management, they are not approachable and ineffective in problem solving. (They have a meeting every week to report any issue, why the problem of this caliber is ignored?). The hospital can lose its license over this, CEO or my department head can lose their job over this. We can get fine, no longer receive funds, and eventually get shut down. It is odd to me.


– This shows my boss isn’t rating me objectively (when he’s already made up in his mind prior to rating me, I can’t change it):

Me: ” A, I’m volunteering to coach U12 soccer.”

Boss: “Do you know how to play?”

Just one statement, it shows he’s very negative, condescending, and he doesn’t know anything about me. Why don’t I switch supervisor, or putting up with this guy. I wrote about how to love the unlovable. 


Here is my qualifications for coaching football:

– I am GREAT with children, I have 19 nieces and nephews. They love me. I’m pleasant and fun to be around. I can get down to their level, yet, when it’s necessary to wear the adult hat, I keep them inbound.

– I play many sports, each one I play, I get trophy in it. Of course I’m not a professional. But I put a lot of time and effort in training. And I do research to get better.

– I went through the coaching clinic, I knew all the drills prior to them teaching me. I know this game!

– I can read the game very well. I can identify the problems and solve it. On the field, I can read the play.

– I follow La Liga, English Premier League, and Bundesliga, yep! I do know my football. I don’t play fantasy soccer, but if I do, I know who the players I should pick.

– I can juggle the ball with both feet. I can finish with both feet.

– Beside, the team that I’m coaching lost 18-nil last year. Of course I’ll do better than some coach from last year. Being as competitive as I am, and as good of a player as I am. At least I can teach them to defend like Mourinho can teach the Chelsea team to defend 🙂

– Last, it is a u12 team, most of the city kids that come to the center are from poverty families. It is also happen my hospital get 99.99% revenue from the city residents. I volunteer to coach to show my appreciation to them to continue to support our hospital (shhhh, it does cost me $45 to buy liabilities insurance, to protect myself). I am trying to return the good deed. Why putting me down? The only possible explaination is my boss has very low EQ, how he got into this position is beyond me. My reaction to his question. Nothing, people like that, the best thing to do is to ignore them.

– If my team can bring trophy, great, if not, I still made the different in these kids ‘ lives by being positive, and well have some fun a long the way. Keep them out of trouble, trouble childhood, might lead to trouble adulthood. I can also leave a mark in their lives, that hospital workers aren’t so bad, they actually can be very good football coach (hoping :))


I take pride in whatever I do, paid or non-paid. What do you think about this approach in raising rent? What have you done in the past to raise rent?


  1. Hi Vivianne, I have learned that most people out there are quite negative and most people don’t really notice or appreciate good customer service. At least this is how I feel when I am at my job.

    In any case, I have no experience in renting but I plan to purchase a condo and rent it out soon. I would assume that when raising rent it would have to be a reasonable amount that doesn’t drives the tenants away or to advertise a higher rate to attract new tenants.

    • Thanks for commenting. Wow, buying a piece of real estate of your own is very exciting. Goodluck in the buying process.

      Say, some people when they see low price, they see low quality. Whether it’s low quality or not, but they might say “there must be something”. Beside, I’m raising the right amount, still under the current market price, I did my comps, and it have a lot of interests.

      Somebody I know, when she listed her house up. Some people wanted to move in as soon as possible. She thinks they are up to something. I want to know their situation, do proper background check, and credit check, they just might started a new job, living in hotel for days, etc. Anyhow, I stay away from her, too. 🙂 she’s someone who talks with her eyes, but not in a good way. heheheh being around her just for a few hours give me negative vibes. Ehehh

  2. I am renting and I wouldn’t be very happy if my landlord increases rent while I have been being the best tenant any landlord dreams of as I pay my rent on time, keep things safe and don’t cause any troubles. I may look for another places in the worst case scenario. So I recommend you to take cautious approach as no tenants will be happy to hear the bad news.



    • It’s great to hear from you. You have very good point. We wouldn’t want “riots” ehhehehe. 2/4 apartments people moved out on their own, so I had no problem with the new tenants, new prices. I also give the current tenant a choice of staying, then each person will pay $100 more compare to their old rent. Rent in the area $700-1700 (my friend pay $1700). $415 per person is way low still. If they don’t resign, I’ll just get even more money from new tenants.

      I honor the ex- owner contract with them, for almost a year, to the end of the contract. It’d probably be easier if I end all contract with them and start new. I’ve heard landlords do that. I’m reading the old contract very closely. I think as long as I can give them 30 days notice, they have to move.

  3. Vivianne,

    Definitely focus more on your side incomes. A raise at work is limited to maybe 5% max while your side incomes are limitless!


    • 5% max is true. Healthcare profession has shifted a little bit. Years ago, hospitals were run by business people. As the result, compensations wasn’t good. Then, there is a big movement for calling MD/MBA, RN/MBA, or MHA, etc. however, people start coming off school, and immediately become supervisor with no managing skills, that’s also bad for business. The day of working for a company 5-10 years to get promote into managing position is over. So, I can’t go anywhere with my current job.

      By not able to change position, 2-5% is the limit rate increase.

      As a typical millennial, I’m open to new adventure such as opening my company to get bigger income. But I must clarify, if I want to make money, I would have done this years ago. Making a lot of money and being filthy rich was never my objective.

      When It finally dawns on me that I should do something else. I open my business, within a few month, my asset exceeded $1.2 mil, within a year, I’m in the millionaire club (at least on paper, I am).

  4. Hi,

    For the last 4 years, I am getting between 0.0% to max 0.7% annual salary increase! So for me the only valuable income is our dividend or our capital gain where we make money.

    Cheers, RA50

    • Sorry to hear about stalling in pay increase. Like I said, I’m thankful to have a job. I’m working for somebody, my compensation depends on them. Therefore, the sooner I reach FI, the less I would depend on them for a raise or compensation.

      Right now, my semi-passive income can replace the annual expense. However, I’m giving myself the extra two years to build up a dividend stock portfolio that could cover the expense itself. It’s better to have 1 system as a back up.

  5. Hey Vivianne – On raising the rent, like some others have posted, if your current tenant is not making your life difficult, go easy on him 🙂

    As for work on the relationship with your boss, he may just have different expectations or definition of success than you have. What has worked for me in the past is to ask my manager what would make his/her life easier and what I could do to help. Usually, there tends to be only 1 or 2 things that are quite easy and the relationship always dramatically improved in a matter of weeks.

    You could also ask him/her what you need to do to get a 10k$ increase: you then put the effort on your manager to think about it 🙂

    Alternatively, if you receive great appreciation from other departments, look for an opportunity. Follow the love. Good managers are always looking for good people!

    • MM,
      Thanks for responding and excellent advise. I’d have to try that in the next coming eval. It’s a good idea to go easy on the tenants that doesn’t cause trouble. 😛 Like I said before, even with the raise it’s still a lot lower than the general market, and what I’m advertising on other units in the same building.

      I went as far as asking my director, he said he signed the eval without giving it any thought. :P… it goes deep from the top. But as I mentioned before, I’m not complaining about the pay. I get compensated very well. The positive thoughts make things look and feel nicer.

      What I’ve also been doing is whenever my subordinates do something good. I’d take time to write to their supervisor. I also let them know that I’m giving them praises. They get paid a lot less than me, the compliments are FREE. You know me and free stuff.

      I’m pleasant to be around, that’s for sure. Turning negatives into positive. That’s the goal here. 😛

  6. Hi vivianne,

    I think if you feel it is fair to raise the rent, then you can go ahead and do so if it is below market value. It’s really up to you, but it will definitely increase your passive income, allowing you to invest more too. I think 10k is a very doable goal considering your great investment strategies.

    Good luck,

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