Free IRA Contribution Goal Progress 2022 Q2: $3,687 in Bonuses So Far!

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards and may receive a commission. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned.

Mid-year 2022 update. Each year, I have a side goal of earning the equivalent of the maximum annual IRA contribution limit of $6,000 using the profits from various promotions alone. In 2021, I reached $5,592 in bonuses and $2,500+ in extra interest. If you had put $6,000 into your IRA every year for the recent 10 year period (2011-2020) and invested in a simple Target Date retirement fund, you would have turned small deals into a $100,000+ nest egg. That’s worth repeating: An extra hundred grand has been the real-world result of regularly investing $500 a month for 10 years! A couple could double these numbers.


Ground rules: Real-world results for one real person only. Following with My Money Blog tradition, this will track my personal, real-world results. It would be quite easy to list a bunch of random promotions that add up to $6,000, but these will be promotions that I personally sign up for and complete the requirements (even though I’ve already opened so many bank accounts, credit cards, and brokerage accounts over the years). I will track my individual results only, although my partner does also participate on a more selective basis. Nearly all of them have been documented in real-time in the Deals and Offers category, Top 10 credit cards list, and brokerage bonus list:

2022 bonuses and promotions (so far)

The total tally is currently $3,687, which is 61% of the $6,000 annual IRA contribution limit. I am leaving out any bonuses that are in progress but haven’t posted yet. 55% of the year has passed, which means I am a tiny bit ahead of pace to reach my goal by the end of the year.

I don’t do every deal, and it has been harder to find credit cards for which I am eligible that offer points that I can use in the foreseeable future. I’m sure there are many opportunities that might be valuable to you, that wouldn’t work for my travel patterns or personal preferences. For those new to this hobby, I would first grab the low-hanging fruit like the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

These numbers ignore higher bank interest APYs from switching banks or buying savings bonds. They also ignore ongoing credit card purchase rewards like 2% to 2.6% cash back on all credit purchases (or airline miles or hotel points) and 5% cash back on specific categories.

This is an enjoyable and profitable hobby for me, but I don’t like to waste my time either. I look for a solid return based on the time commitment required. I tend to avoid speculative bets on magic ponzi boxes backed by other magic ponzi boxes, bonuses that are hard to convert to real money and/or things I already buy otherwise, and anything that requires driving to stores where things may or may not be in stock. The deals that I post usually last at least a few days, but it’s a bit like value investing where you have to be ready to take decisive action when an opportunity shows up, because they won’t last forever. The big deals this quarter were the Citi Premier offer worth $800 (still live, but a limited-time offer) and SoFi Personal Loan deal worth $600 (only lasted less than a week).

My Money Blog has partnered with CardRatings and Credit-Land for selected credit cards, and may receive a commission from card issuers. All opinions expressed are the author’s alone, and has not been provided nor approved by any of the companies mentioned. is also a member of the Amazon Associate Program, and if you click through to Amazon and make a purchase, I may earn a small commission. Thank you for your support.

User Generated Content Disclosure: Comments and/or responses are not provided or commissioned by any advertiser. Comments and/or responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser. It is not any advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.


  1. Jason Boxman says

    That’s pretty amazing. If I hit $100/mo, that’s a success; I don’t spend enough for most of the credit card bonuses to be viable. I generally only chase offers over $200 to ensure best use of time, and with a fraud alert on my credit, new bank accounts are generally rejected unless I show up in person. Am doing the BoA rewards card bonus this year.

  2. speak mind says

    Yeah credit card bonuses are the way to go because it takes less effort, but they clamp down if u open too many accounts

  3. Johnathan,

    That sounds like a fun game; “IRA stacking “ I think I’m going to play even though I’m starting late.

  4. Justjoeguy says

    Great stuff, Johnathan. Compare. 90% of the people who put their money in common stocks wind up losing.

  5. Thanks for all your informative articles! Can you address how u manage all the new credit cards or banks? Do you leave them open after you satisfy the promo period? (I hear your credit score goes down if you close them).

  6. I do a lot that is not nearly as passive as just checking/savings account bonuses and credit card bonuses, but did some math myself on my “extra” online earnings this year. Was pleasantly surprised to find out it was ~$3,572.

    Checking & Savings Account Bonuses ($900 pre-tax)
    – Marcus Savings $100
    – SoFi Checking & Savings $475 ($300 from SoFi, expired $175 deal from Swagbucks)
    – SoFi Personal Loan Rate Check $20
    – SoFi Rewards for Direct Deposit & Logging In ($4.60)
    – Chime Checking $300 (via Swagbucks)

    Credit Card Bonuses ($1,485)
    – $830 AmEx Gold (conservative valuation of Membership Rewards at 1 cents each gives me $900 for the bonus, $180 in dining credits, less $250 in fee, still have time to earn more dining credits, I assume points beyond what I received from the bonus to be comparable to what I otherwise would have gotten another card)
    – $75 AmEx Gold Google Fi Offer ($25 off $50 Google Fi purchase, up to 3x)
    – $100 AmEx Google Fi Offer (from parents who don’t use the service)
    – $500 Bank of America Premium Rewards
    – $100 Bank of America Premium Rewards Travel Delay Insurance Payout (I had a flight delay that paid out more than $400, but if I didn’t have the card, I probably would’ve booked a hostel or something instead for less)

    Surveys & User Research ($743 pre-tax)
    – Forthright $20
    – Prolific $195
    – UserTesting $60
    – dScout $365
    – CrowdTap $60 (as a Target credit)
    – Fetch Rewards $35
    – Swagbucks $8

    Games ($444 pre-tax, all via Swagbucks, and most of them such a grind they really weren’t worth it)
    – King of Avalon $119 ($130, $11 in costs)
    – Rise of Kingdoms $100
    – Mafia City $113 ($130, $17 in costs)
    – Raid Shadow Legends $63 ($95, $32 in costs)
    – Bermuda Adventures $50

    I’m hoping to open one more credit card and earn some more via surveys this year. I think that will likely net me another $1,200. Doubt that I’ll get to $6k because I’m going to be traveling or moving for a few months this year, but who knows!

Speak Your Mind