The sun is shining as I type this out. A nice change after having an entire week of non-stop rain. But that’s not what I’m here to share. I woke up thinking about a Youtube video I watched last night, one of those top 10 videos about famous celebrities that are broke. (Don’t ask why I watched it, the internet is a mysterious thing sometimes) I was actually entertained and surprised by some of the names that were on the list. But being a person raised in the era of wifi connection, I did a bit of googling to verify if the video was a load of bull or spoke the truth.
It spoke the truth.
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And then it got me thinking about the countless individuals I know personally that are financially struggling. People who on the surface shouldn’t be. Or at the very least I didn’t think they had any reason to be, but then it occurred to me that a lot of people simply don’t know how to manage money.
You need to learn how to manage your money to get better, and a lot of people never get better at managing money even if they make more and more of it in life.They’ve never been taught and they have never thought to educate themselves either. It’s like giving someone who doesn’t know how to drive a car. You can give them a garage full of cars and they’ll never get any better at driving.
The 3 Rules to Wealth Creation
I thought this is a major problem that needs to be corrected and so here I am writing this post on a sunny afternoon. These are my 3 major money rules I follow.
- Spend within your means.
- Have multiple streams of income
- Use your money to make more money
Let’s go over each one in more detail so hopefully I can convince you to follow these 3 money rules too.
Spend within your means
This is the first rule for wealth creation. The art of saving money isn’t complicated or full of secrets only known to a select few. If you know how to do grade 6 mathematics you can easily save money by counting what’s coming in and what’s going out of your pocket. I personally use a free app on my Android phone called AndroMoney to track my financial activities. I also use Freshbooks to do my overall bookkeeping.
The key takeaway from this rule is you don’t want to be living paycheck to paycheck, in the best scenario, or racking up debt to cover a life you can’t afford. You have to put away something each month to start your journey of creating wealth. It doesn’t matter how little you think it is. Something is better than nothing.
However, a lot of people say something along the lines of “I don’t have anything left at the end of the month to put away”, and to those individuals I would advise to either
- Spend the next month and track everything you do financially. Record everything you buy and every dollar that’s coming in. Use a notebook or an app, it doesn’t matter as long as you have a record. Then evaluate if you’re able to cut anything out or find cheaper alternatives instead. You’ll be surprised how much we spend on things we don’t take note of. I use to spend a ridiculous amount on mango smoothies before I began tracking my spending.
- If you already have a sizable amount of debt, then go to your bank manager and talk to them about refinancing your debt. Or work out a repayment program with them that will work for both you and your bank. Focus on repaying your debt off before putting your efforts in saving money, but even then you’ll want to give yourself some flexibility for unexpected expenses each month.
Have multiple streams of income
After learning how to spend your money and save your money it’s time to think about where it’s coming from. For the majority of you reading this, your main income source is probably from a full-time job. Which worked just fine in the post war era all the way up to the 90’s. But now? Not so much.
Job security is at an all time low and it’s predicted to only get lower as younger millennials are actively opting to job hop themselves. Employer and employees alike are no longer looking for life-time partnerships, but short contextual ones.
It would be wise for anyone to diversify their streams of income on this one point alone, but let me put it in another way for you. If you want to retire earlier than the national average age and retire without downsizing. You don’t rely on your salary alone. Don’t believe me? Ask the countless studies conducted in recent years on retirement and wealth creation.
The ones with the largest net worth saw their salary accounting for only 20%! So what’s the other 80%? From other income sources, be it dividends or interest or capital gains on real estate. The rule for wealth creation and ultimately retiring young is to not rely on just your salary alone.
Which leads me to the third money rule.
Use your money to make more money
How do you increase your sources of income? For the most part it takes money, and in some incidents, time also. Now a lot of people won’t have the latter, or much of it and so the common ways of gaining other forms of income would be:
- Investing in stocks for dividends and interests
- Buying other financial products for capital gains and or interest
- Real estate for rental income or capital gains
All of which don’t require a large amount of time commitment to manage. All of which, are different types of passive income.
Passive income. Ah. The elusive income type that many are consciously unaware of but all knowingly want. Who doesn’t like the idea of making money without trading in your time for it. The unfortunate reality though is, you can only build passive income by two ways.
- Upfront capital – such as buying assets
- Sweat capital – where you create the asset from scratch (ie. time and effort)
It use to be good sense to use an active income source (your day job) to fund the acquisition of assets that’ll generate a passive income stream for you. But that was before the internet was what it is today.
With the internet as it is, you don’t have to have large sums of money sitting in the bank before you can build an investment portfolio, or real estate portfolio OR even buy a license of a successful franchise. All you need is time.
Ok ok, I know. I said most of you reading this most likely don’t have a lot of time, because most of you probably have a full time day job. I get it. BUT, let’s say you DO have time. What kind of passive income streams would you be able to create with it?
I personally have enjoyed the following types of passive income:
- Royalties from publishing
- Sales from digital files
- Affiliate marketing commissions
- Adsense from Youtube videos
But there’s a TON more than just the ones I’ve dabbled my hands in. The possibilities are truly endless when it comes to making money online. If you’d like to know more about how I make my passive income online, then check out my “MD Resources” here. You’ll find all the tools and resources I personally use and vouch for to make passive income.
And these are the 3 money rules I follow in life. I intend to follow them for as long as I’m alive, but never say never! (Maybe I learn something new that makes more sense) Don’t forget to save this to Pinterest and sign up to notifications at the bottom right corner.
Here are some more resources for you to check out:
- A list of 100 passive income streams that really work, both online and offline.
- 5 of the easiest passive income streams for busy people
- How I make $2000 per month at home with Kindle Publishing
- Start your very own Kindle business by first learning with my free course here
- Start a blog that’s properly built to be monetised with my free course here.
- Learn frugal spending habits to not just change your financial situation but your overall spending mindset.