Here is a hot take that people hate to hear… Saving, investing and eventually becoming wealthy is simple. Honestly its not very hard to do. It doesn’t require huge amounts of knowledge, 10,000’s of hours of study and research, it only requires a few things. People hate to hear this, you know why? Because it means their money issues are mostly on them, nobody likes that. It’s way easier to think its an impossible task that only the elites of the world are able to do because of their intelligence, or position in society. But sorry it’s not.
I’m here to tell you as a lower middle class kid, from an immigrant town, that graduated from a 3/10 high school, that reaching your financial goals is not only possible but overall pretty simple and easy. Okay here is the secret, and its another series of things people hate to hear because they have heard it over and over but nobody wants to do it…
- Study/develop/work on/pursue a skill people want and need (and you at least kind of like). Accounting, plumbing, drywalling, teaching, web design, taxes, project management… you name it, as long as people are looking for someone to do it, its on the list.
- Do a good job and care about your work.
- Create a budget and do all you can to be saving at least 10% of your income but you should aim for 20 – 30%.
- Create an emergency fund, of 3 months to a year of your expenses to provide the cushion in case of bad luck.
- Own your home, or own real estate to shield you from inflation.
- Invest the rest in a broad diversified portfolio (such as betterment.com which makes easily available), and don’t mess with it.
That’s it, I’m serious that’s it. If you followed the above by time you were in your 60’s you’d be a multimillionaire.
If you read this far I can be a little more honest with you, it’s not easy as much as its simple. Working hard isn’t easy, saving instead of buying that cool new thing you want right now isn’t easy, keeping a budget isn’t easy, but they are all simple. They are all with in the reach of 99% of the population. I’ve seen very smart people be incredibly stupid with their money and I’ve seen people who would not rank at the top of the IQ list do incredibly well. I’ve seen people at the top of the social ladder the “privileged” squander what they have, and I’ve seen many many people at the bottom of that ladder create a real prosperous life for themselves. The difference almost always lies within one of the steps above.