You can make more money and grow your wealth by working harder. Generally, the more hours you work, the more money you will make. However, putting in more hours, burning the midnight oil, putting your nose to the grindstone, these all don’t sound like much fun. There are only so many hours in a day that you can realistically work, and so trading your time for money can only get you so far. When we study people, who have been financially successful and wealthy, they didn’t get that way because they worked harder or longer than everyone else.
One of the best, most common ways to grow your wealth is to earn money not just from what you do, but also from what you own. One of the best features of capitalism, is the ability to own assets that act like money-making machines that make the owner money without their direct labor or input. Yes, these money-making machines make you money while you sleep!
We call these money-making machines investments. An investment is anything that you put time or money into now, and it will return you money (hopefully much more) in the future. They can be simple investments like bonds where you are lending money to some entity, or stocks where you own a fractional piece of a profitable business, or it could be you own your own small business.
The best feature of owning investments is that they make you money not based on your efforts, but rather on time invested and the financial success of the investment. As long as the investment exists, it continues to make you money. If you leave the money earned within the investment, then the earnings compound so that the money your money makes, makes more money. This can greatly accelerate and increase your wealth, without being limited by how many hours you work. The awesome power of compound growth is truly a marvel as mentioned in a quote attributed to Albert Einstein “compound interest is the greatest force in the universe”.
Okay so owning assets that make you money is a great way to grow your wealth, but how do you acquire these assets?
It takes time and money to acquire assets that will make you money. There really is no get rich quick scheme or a goose that will lay you a golden egg. However, if you are Money-Smart, you can take the steps to give you the opportunity to grow your wealth.
The 10 steps to follow so you can grow your wealth and acquire money-making investments are:
Start investing as young as possible. Understand that time invested is hugely important, so even small amounts invested in compound growth assets when you are younger is a big money-maker.
Set financial goals. You can’t be motivated to improve your finances if you don’t have goals to meet.
Manage your risks and protect your future with insurance. We all face risks, and one bad break could result in a catastrophic loss and wipe out all your past success and future opportunity.
Minimize your lifetime interest expense by paying down your debt as fast as possible.
Keep your investment fees low. High investment fees will greatly reduce your investment growth. Every dollar paid in investment fees can’t participate in compound growth so the actual cost of investment fees over time is huge.
Maintain a great credit score. This easy to manage rating of your credit worthiness is a major factor in the rate of interest you will be charged on your debt. Over the course of your life a good credit score will save you tens of thousands of dollars in needless interest costs.
Avoid high interest rate debt. If you carry a balance on your credit card or use payday loans you will pay a lot of interest over your lifetime which just increases your cost of living and robs you of funds that you could be investing.
Spend less than you make. People tend to spend what they have available, and they suffer from lifestyle inflation as the more they make the more they spend. This leaves no money available to acquire investments.
Pay yourself first. Literally pay yourself on payday like it is a bill. Then take this money and acquire investments for compound growth.
Minimize your taxes. Taxes are one of the largest expenses in your lifetime. There are many ways to be tax smart and reduce the amount of taxes you must pay which free’s up money to invest.
If you follow these 10 steps you will have more funds available and at least have an opportunity to grow your wealth. To actually grow your wealth, you need to use your extra money to acquire assets that make money and hold them for as long as possible. The steps you take today will determine the quality of life for your future self.