This simple graphic pinpoints what it takes to build wealth. Broke people do the top half. Wealthy people do the bottom half. You simply cannot get ahead if you’re resetting yourself back to zero by spending every dollar you make. I recognize there are endless examples of systemic inequality in our world, and many people don’t get a fair shake. But the path for those who want to better their position is to figure out a way to spend less than you make and invest the difference.
One of my favorite ways to execute this is to “pay yourself first”. Set up a system where, before you can spend money on anything, you’re investing in your own future. Here’s a few ideas how:
★ Sign up for your work 401(k) if available. Ratchet up the contribution amounts to invest more money every paycheck.
★ Open up a Roth IRA and set up auto investments to auto deduct the day after you’re paid. You’ll never even miss the money.
★ Set up an auto transfer from your checking account to a savings account to build up your savings.
★ Work a second job or side hustle, and put 100% of that money towards investing.
I love the “autopilot” stuff because you only have to set it up once, then you don’t have to think about it every month. If you set up all those auto investments then go on living your life, you’ll automatically be building great wealth over time!
The bigger percent you can crank that “investing” portion to, the faster you will build wealth. If you can invest a huge 55% of your income, it will take only about 12 years for you to have enough invested to never work again. If you crank it down to 0%, you’ll never be able to quit.
All you loyal Personal Finance Club members know the two rules! This is basically the visual representation of them: 1.) Live below your means and 2.) Invest early and often.