So you want to be sitting on a pile like Warren Buffett eh? That’s what almost everyone would say their dream is, but very few people actually have personal finance habits to match the dream.
But let’s not worry about that! If you are serious about getting rich because you value your time and freedom, check out these 5 personal finance habits that will make you rich. You might also want to sneak a peek at the 11 personal finance hacks you’ll wish you knew sooner.
1. Spend [a lot] less than you make.
You need to actually accumulate money from month to month in order to become rich. How exactly do you do that? For starters, spend [a lot] less than you make. The problem with this is that society has us wired to not only spend what we make but to spend waaaay more than we make, locking ourselves into consumer debt. You can’t build your future when you are busy paying off your past.
2. Spend your money to make money.
The difference between someone who is truly rich and someone who just looks rich is how they spend their money. Rich people spend their money on things that will generate an income for them. Think rental properties, businesses, investments, etc. The average Joe spends money on things that will make them look rich while in reality making them very poor. Think fancy cars, big houses, name-brand clothing, fancy restaurants.
These days, there are many options to use what you have to make money if you just try. Have big boy toys? Throw them up on outdoorsy.com and rent them out while you aren’t using them. Have a spare bedroom? Throw it up on Airbnb. Start small and switch your thinking toward “how can this make me money?” and you’ll be successful.
3. Have an emergency fund.
I know you’ve heard this tip before. But emergency funds aren’t sexy, I get that. In fact, they’re quite boring. They just sit around… waiting. They don’t compound interest, they don’t buy anything shiny, they just sit. Sit and wait to save your BOOTY! THAT’S WHAT!
Emergency funds have this incredible superpower of putting distance between you and bad things waiting to happen. They keep you out of debt, they lower stress, they are your shoulder to cry on when something bad happens. Of all the personal finance habits to have, having and actually fully-funding your emergency fund should be one.
4. Invest while you are young and do it often!
When it comes to investing, money is not your true asset. Time is. Most people wait until retirement is knocking on their door before they think about how they are going to fund it. But the earlier you start investing, the easier it is to create wealth.
$100 invested monthly, assuming a 10% return for 45 years would give you just over one million dollars at retirement. If you waited until you were 35 years old to start investing, you’d have to invest $475 a month to retire with the same one million dollars. Start early, invest often.
5. Avoid consumer debt.
Consumer debt is your everyday form of bondage. And most people willingly sign up for it! Here’s the thing. You can either pay interest on your credit cards, your car loans, and student loans or have interest paying you through investments and assets.
Having consumer debt will block you from other financial opportunities along the way. You have to have cash on hand to take advantage of opportunities, but people with consumer debt not only don’t have extra cash on hand, but they are also still paying for things they purchased years ago. Avoid debt like the plague.
If you have the slightest desire to build wealth, then these 5 tips will positively help you. But knowing them really does nothing for you. The real question is, can you act on what you’ve learned? Are you willing to actually choose one and apply it? Gut check, huh.