Here are eight rules to build wealth when you aren’t born into money
99% of people aren’t born into wealth, and have to work their whole lives to achieve six-zero figure financial freedom.
“If something is important enough, even if the odds are against you, you should still do it,” says Elon Musk. The path to wealth, for numerous people, is complicated and filled with obstacles and is unique to their specific circumstances, But, their determination to reach their goals allows them to make the money they always wanted to make.
You’ll need to make smart decisions in your personal and professional life to build your wealth up over time. “Great wealth builders focus on both saving money and earning more,” says Todd Tresidder of FinancialMentor.com. It’s a twofold system that you’ll have to operate the best of your ability.
Rule 1: Pay off high-interest debt
Your first step to achieving wealth is to settle outstanding debt. If you’re holding significant debt, you won’t be able to make new investments or buy assets. You’ll find yourself spending all your disposable income on paying off the interest and never really getting to the principle amount. This puts you in a circle of debt where you never make any progress.
“Financial peace isn’t the acquisition of stuff. It’s learning to live on less than you make, so you can give money back and have money to invest. You can’t win until you do this,” says Dave Ramsey.
Once you’ve dedicated more money to servicing debt, and you’ve paid off high-interest accounts, you can progress to investments and saving larger portions of your salary. You can now use your excess debt instalments for your investments, and the interest you’re earning will now build on your wealth instead of taking away from it.
Rule 2: Always have money left at the end of your month
This rule is an easy concept, but challenging to put into practice. If you want to grow your wealth, you’ll need to ensure your monthly expenses are less than your monthly income. “It’s not how much money you make, but how much money you keep, how hard it works for you, and how many generations you keep it for,” says Robert Kiyosaki.
The key to following this rule effectively is lowering your spending so you can increase your savings. You can start by slowly putting away a certain amount every month. Keep in mind you still need to pay your bills and live comfortably, which means the amount of money you put aside needs to be any extra cash you have left over.
Rule 3: Take advantage of tax-free savings accounts
With a tax-free savings account, you can put aside a specific amount every month that you don’t pay tax on. The money you’ve saved, should you need to withdraw some of it, or all of it, won’t be penalised by the taxman. “Try to save something while your salary is small; it’s impossible to save after you begin to earn more,” says Jack Benny.
Take advantage of this investment offer before your expenses grow along with your salary and you find it difficult to put anything aside.
Rule 4: Develop wealth building habits
You need to adopt habits that lead to wealth and help you to build a solid financial foundation. Multiple, small smart choices consistently conducted over time, will create wealth. But, it needs to be consistent and over a long period of time. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do,” says Mark Twain.
Wealth building is not a get rich quick scheme, it will take years, potentially decades, but if you’re diligent you can reach your goals.
Rule 5: Hustle. Hard
You need to work harder than everyone else around you because if working at average speed could grow wealth, everyone would be wealthy.
“There is no such thing as overnight success or easy money. If you fail, do not be discouraged; try again. When you do well, do not change your ways. Success is not just good luck: it is a combination of hard work, good credit standing, opportunity, readiness and timing. Success will not last if you do not take care of it,” says Henry Sy.
Hard work will help you to accomplish your wealth making goals. “I still work hard to know my business. I’m continuously looking for ways to improve all my companies, and I’m always selling. Always,” says Mark Cuban. You need to always be considering ‘how can I work harder?’, but also smarter to increase wealth. Don’t become complacent about your methods, as it could lead you down a challenging wealth creation path.
Rule 6: Create multiple revenue streams
Investing your savings is a way to create multiple revenue streams. There is also the potential of part-time work, but note that freelance work is growing in popularity amongst those looking to increase their incomes.
“Building wealth is about creating value and then recapturing that value in financial compensation. Whether it’s providing services, knowledge, or experience, if you aren’t creating value then there’s nothing for you to build wealth with,” says Jim Wang of Bargaineering.com and Microblogger.com. “This value can also take many forms. It can be actual monetary value or it could be providing entertainment or saving time or reducing headaches. The more creative you are, the more opportunities you’ll see.”
Rule 7: Know how to manage your money
You need to learn how to work your money so that it benefits you the most. “The single biggest difference between financial success and financial failure is how well you manage your money. It’s simple: to master money, you must manage money,” says T Harv Eker. Without this skill your money is going to underperform and it will take a lot longer to reach your goals of wealth.
Until you study up and learn how to manage your money, you could try this suggestion from T Harv Eker: “If you don’t have the money management skills yet, using a debit card will ensure you don’t overspend and rack up debt on a credit card.”
Rule 8: Hire expert help
If finance is not your area of expertise, and you’ve accumulated knowledge but now you need insight that can only be delivered by a professional, then you need to hire them.
“The wealthy person has three best friends: her attorney, her accountant and her adviser. The wealthy tend to use the law and tax code to their advantage when figuring out how to maximise their wealth, especially over multiple generations, and they are not afraid to spend money up front for counsel to get these answers,” says Justin Kumar, a portfolio manager. “The wealthy look at value over cost, but they are still prudent in their decisions.”
Once you’ve implemented every rule, start again, ensure that you’re constantly working on improving your finances, reducing your expenses, increasing your savings and investments. Once you have the rhythm of wealth-building in your genes, stick with it until you reach your financial goals.