How to manage your money like the rich…

Wealthy people invest first & spend what’s left…

Broke people spend first & invest what’s left

– Unknown –

People have this misconception about wealth.  It’s common belief that building wealth is about how much money you make, but the truth is, it’s not about how much you make, but what you do with it from that point on.

There are many high income earners that make a six figure income but yet still live check to check.  So once again, don’t buy into the misconception that it’s about how much you make that matters.

If you truly want to build a wealth portfolio and watch it grow, then it’s imperative that you start taking on the mindset of those who have been successful already and follow the path in doing so. 

I’m not a financial advisor so I’m not going to tell you what you should invest in, but I am someone who is in the process of building wealth from scratch while taking lessons from the wealthy and putting them into practice.  As someone who’s taking the journey with me, you might want to consider doing the same.

At this stage in my wealth building adventure, I’m doing it at a micro level while I continue to pay down debt. However, I’m still able to follow the same principles that the wealthy use. The first place to start is taking on the mindset of the rich.

A key mindset difference between the wealthy and the poor is the abundance mentality vs the scarcity mentality. Here’s a couple examples of what I mean:

Scarcity mentality: “I want to be debt free”

Abundant mentality: “I want to be financially free”

Scarcity mentality: “I need to live below my means”

Abundant mentality: “I need to expand my means”

As you can see, the scarcity mentality exist within a place of confinement. Reducing expenses and living within a limited income and borrowing money to purchase things they can’t afford. Even if they are debt free, they are not financially free because they have to work to earn income. Let me reiterate… debt free does not equate to being financially free. Whereas the abundant mentality exist within a place of limitless opportunity by creating multiple streams of income and having those multiple streams of income fund their lifestyle.

See, the rich acquire assets. Assets are things that put money into your account. The rich focus on passive investments because they are assets that accrue wealth without actually having to physically work for it. These assets continue to work for them and make money even while they sleep. A few examples are:

  • Owning businesses that don’t require their presence
  • Dividend paying and growth stocks
  • Bonds
  • Notes
  • Royalties
  • Income generating real estate

Another difference between the wealthy and the poor is that wealthy people view money as a tool and nothing more. Money is merely a means to an end and not the end itself. The tool of money is the means to financial freedom which is the end goal.

If you’ve watched the video “The richest man in babylon” (hint… hint) that I have linked in the side bar to the right, then you probably understand that the rich follow the mantra “a portion of what I earn is mine to keep”. In other words, they pay themselves first and put that money to work for them which in turns creates more money to reinvest. It’s a perpetual cycle.

One example of this is reinvesting the dividends of dividend paying stocks into the purchase of more dividend paying stocks. The acronym for this is “DRIP” or dividend reinvestment program. Instead of spending the dividends paid out by the corporations, the wealthy reinvest those dividends to purchase more of the dividend paying stock so that when the next dividend payout occurs, they have more income to reinvest into purchasing more shares of dividend paying stocks. Do you see the pattern of having money work for you to earn yet more money to work for you over and over again?

Another difference between the wealthy and the poor is that the rich don’t keep a lot of money in the bank. Sure, they keep enough saved in an emergency fund account and some “dry powder” in an investment account for when buying opportunities occur, but the rest of what they earn is put to work for them. Poor people however, keep money in the bank earning very little interest while sitting in a savings account, often just fractions of a percent. Meanwhile the bank loans out that saved money at a higher interest rate and keeps the difference for itself. Notice how the banks are making money?

That leads me to the next distinguished habit of the rich. They legally use other peoples money to make them money. The rich use leverage in their favor. They borrow money to purchase an income generating asset like real estate and keep the difference between what income the asset generates and what the loan payment is. This is called cash flow positive for those not yet well versed in financial terminology. This cash flow is then wisely put back to work to purchase more income producing assets.

Another investment of the rich is the purchase of things that grow in value over time. Rare art and/or artifacts are good examples. But one of the main assets they purchase are growth stocks. Growth stocks are companies like Amazon, Facebook, Google and Apple just to name a few. Growth stocks can be riskier investments due to the fact that they can lose value, but risk management by doing due diligence before investing in them can be mitigated.

I hope you’re seeing the pattern… investing in assets that work for you so that you can then purchase more assets with the income your already existing assets create. That and one more thing that I will share with you about the mentality of the rich.

I saved the best for last. The rich understand the genius of compounded interest over time. It’s the snow ball affect of perpetually reinvesting income and interest generated by existing income that grows massively over time. It’s the “long game” mentality by delaying gratification now to reap the rewards later.

The journey of wealth building is a long slow one. The “get rich quick” mentality is for gamblers, not investors. Is it possible to get rich quick? Sure, but it’s not easy and it requires high risk to reward variables to achieve. Think about it, if getting rich quick was really so easy to do, wouldn’t everyone be doing it? Don’t let yourself fall for that trap… it’s those selling get rich quick methods that are getting rick quick by poor mentality individuals chasing the dream.

As I like to say… “the journey begins with the first step”.

If you see value in this article then please be sure to subscribe to the blog if you haven’t done so already. I’ll be putting up more wealth building posts in the future and you can have them delivered straight to your email account.

I’ll see you in the next post. Until next time… be sure to comment below and let’s get some dialogue going. I’m curious to know, what tips do you have on how to manage your money like the rich?

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In case of an emergency…

“Save what you can towards the emergency and life happens fund. Don’t worry yourself sick about the slow growth. The point is it’s growing even if it’s just one dollar at a time ” – Michelle Singletary –

When it comes to wealth building, it’s best to have some money put aside in case of an emergency. That last thing you want to have to do is liquidate one of your investments because you need money immediately. The whole purpose of investing is to build wealth over time. Your savings and your investments are two separate components to your wealth portfolio.

To be clear, your emergency fund is not an investment! It’s insurance you put into place to protect your investments so that you don’t have to liquidate them at the risk of penalties, taxes and fees. It is part of your wealth portfolio as a buffer.

I want you to think of building your investment portfolio like that of building a house. Before you can put up the walls and roof, you first have to lay out the plumbing and utilities network. Then you pour the foundation and after that you begin constructing the frame. So begin the journey to wealth building on the right path.

There’s some mixed philosophies out there about how much you should put into an emergency fund. Ranging anywhere from $1,000.00 up to six months of expenses is the norm. I’m more in the Dave Ramsey camp of $1,000.00 and then paying down debts with what’s left over after typical monthly expenses.

Where I differentiate from what Dave Ramsey believes is that I believe that you should put 10% of your after expenses money towards investing and then pay down debts with the remaining amount. Dave believes you should pay down all of your debts first before investing.

If you’ve ever heard the fable the richest man in babylon then “A part of all I earn is mine to keep” will make sense. And it’s putting that 10% to work so it can earn even more over time that attributes to financial growth.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that you shouldn’t pay off your debts as quickly as possible. What I am saying is that I’m in the “pay yourself first” camp. You can still pay down debts quickly while you build your wealth portfolio slowly and save hundreds if not thousands of dollars in interest simultaneously.

Another reason I believe you should invest 10% of after expenses funds while paying down your debts is because of habit building. It’s extremely important to habitually invest every time you earn income. It needs to become so second nature to you that forget you’re doing it. It’s time to inherit the “set it and forget it” mindset. If you can’t afford 10% at the moment then start off with 1-2% if you can. The point is to form the habit and make a commitment to building your wealth portfolio.

The one thing that you definitely want to do with your emergency fund is keep it in a moderate yielding savings account that pays around 2% (200 basis points). This way your savings is earning you a small amount of money while waiting to be called upon. Two percent isn’t much, but most banks are only paying fractions of a percent on savings accounts these days. A 2% return is a lot better than a half a percent or less.

Another potential option is parking it into a Roth IRA. In the investment community it’s taboo to pull money from retirement vehicles like 401K’s and IRA’s. But a Roth IRA is a bit different in the fact that your contributions can be pulled without any tax penalties. The pros to parking your emergency fund into a Roth IRA:

  • The contributions can be taken out without tax penalties.
  • While the money is in the Roth IRA, the earnings made grow tax free.
  • You can put up to $6,000.00 a year into Roth IRA’s.

There is a con to this as well, there’s always the risk of the market crashing and the risk of your contributions being affected as a result. Since market disruptions do occur, that is something to consider.

I believe you should break up your emergency fund into different segments.

  • Cash, you can’t go wrong with having some cash on hand.
  • Moderate yielding savings account. Let your money earn something while it’s put aside.
  • Roth IRA since you can pull from the contributions tax and penalty free.
  • Dividend paying life insurance policies. This one is the most controversial because there is a low interest rate on the loan, but the upside is that you can delay paying it back indefinitely since the death benefits would cover the loan plus interest at the time of your death.

Building an emergency fund is being financially responsible by being proactive. Having financial insurance is wise even if you never need to use it. You hope to never get into a car accident, but you have car insurance right?

Don’t be like millions of Americans who right now can’t even come up with $400.00 for an emergency without having to sell something to do so. As a member of the Refresh Financially community, you’re on the path to being financially savvy.

Brad Finn explains what I’m talking about really well. Take a few minutes to check out this video:

As I like to always say… “the journey begins with the first step”.

Be sure to subscribe to the blog if you haven’t done so already because I’ll be putting up more wealth building posts in the near future.

Until next time… be sure to comment below and let’s get some dialogue going.

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What’s the financial blog about?

“I believe that through knowledge and discipline, financial peace is possible for all of us” – Dave Ramsey –

So you might wondering what the financial blog is about. Since this is the inaugural post, let’s get into more detail about that.

I’ve been through some serious financial turmoil in the past. At the time I was going through those difficult moments, it was extremely overwhelming. What I didn’t realize at that time is that I would come out of it all much wiser and resilient than I could’ve ever imagined.

Even though I never want to go through that again, I can truthfully say that I’m happy I did. Not because I’m a gluten for punishment, but because:

  • I can now put the wisdom I gained to good use. Hence, the conception of refresh financially as the result.
  • Inform people on ways to build wealth from scratch with very little money to start.
  • Provide content covering a variety of financial topics.
  • Mentor those who currently going through what I’ve already endured.

Putting a bad experience to good use so that others may benefit gives it value. And value is what I plan to provide to the readers of this blog.

I know for a fact that there are a lot people out there going through what I experienced and feeling what I felt. If you’re one of them, know that I can relate and plan to provide guidance on how to tough it out until things get better.

Know this though… things will get better, but might get worse before then. Please subscribe to the blog because I will be posting in the future about solutions that you may find beneficial.

Also, in the blog posts to come, I will be writing about not only those experiences, but ways for everyone to become better informed about financial issues and investment options for you to consider. I’m not the most astute financial person on the planet. In fact, I’m far from it. However, I do have enough financial acumen to mentor while still constantly striving towards higher aspirations.

If you’re just starting out and/or only have a small amount to put towards investing, you will benefit from this blog as well.

Because I’ve had to rebuild my wealth from scratch, and started out being able to invest with just a small amount. I discovered investment opportunities that don’t require very much to get started.

Did you know you can start investing for as little as $5 a month? Seriously, that’s not much, but it’s someplace to start if that’s all you can afford at the moment. Even someone on the strictest of budgets can commit to that. Then,as your financial situation improves and you have more money to invest, you can start designating more funds toward your wealth building goals.

Be sure to subscribe to the blog if you haven’t done so already because I’ll be putting up posts on how you can do that in the future.

Until next time… be sure to comment below and let’s get some dialogue going.

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