Once you’ve reached the phase of your financial life where you’ve paid off your debts and have a healthy emergency fund tucked away in a savings account, it’s time to shift your focus to building your net worth. GOBankingRates spoke with four money experts on how they accumulated wealth. Reading their personal finance journeys can inspire you to do the same.
Starting Your Journey Toward Financial Success
“Financial success” means different things to different people, but if your goal is to increase your overall wealth, you might not know how to start. Keep reading to learn experts’ tried-and-true tips to improve your net worth.
Start With Cutting Out Unnecessary Expenses
“Set a weekly and monthly budget and stick to it no matter how tempted you are to buy those concert tickets or daily iced coffee drinks,” said John Rampton, founder and CEO of Calendar.
“Cutting out those expenses helped me quickly build up a savings account, emergency account and retirement account.”
“Do something that scares… you every single day that moves you toward your financial goal,” said Jen Sincero, New York Times best-selling author and motivational speaker.
“Ask for that raise, make the cold sales calls, double your rates, take out that loan to start your business. If you want to change your life and you’re not scared, you’re doing something wrong. You have to push yourself outside your comfort zone and take risks to be successful — which is scary. Hence, fear is a great sign that you’re on the right track.”
Know What You Want in Life
“Have a vision for your life,” said Marsha Barnes, CEO and founder of The Finance Bar, a company focused on helping women and couples achieve financial wellness.
“When you have a vision for your life, you’ll have a vision for your money.”
Believe That You Can Be Rich
“Most people don’t come from money and don’t know what building wealth really means,” said Jeff Rose, certified financial planner and CEO of Good Financial Cents. “Because of that, they assume they can never be financially successful. You first have to believe you can otherwise you never will.”
How To Build Net Worth
When it comes to building net worth, it’s important to know what to focus on, whether it’s investing, buying assets or increasing your income. These financial experts weigh in on the best ways to get rich.
Diversify Your Assets
There’s no one thing you should focus on to build net worth, said Rampton.
In fact, diversity is key. “(Your investments) should be diversified across all areas, including real estate and internet real estate (domain names), assets and stocks,” he said.
Have Specific Financial Goals
“One of the best ways to get rich is to focus on the specifics of why you want this money: What is it for?” said Sincero.
“Saying ‘I want to make millions of dollars’ is meaningless, but saying ‘I want to go to Tuscany for a week with my family, buy an Audi Q5, donate $25,000 to the ACLU and all of this costs X amount of dollars, hence I shall not stop until I make this money’ has meaning. Getting clear on the specifics of what you desire money for conjures up the excited determination required to push yourself to do what it takes. Without this hell-bent-for-glory drive, you will most likely give up when it gets challenging.”
Do Something You Love
Once you’ve established what it is you want to do with your wealth, figure out a way to build wealth that also brings you personal fulfillment.
“Identify wealth-building mechanisms that you will enjoy watching grow,” said Barnes. “This could be a growing business.”
Learn How To Invest Smartly
“Investing, in general, will open the door to so many opportunities,” said Rose. “Become familiar with how investing works and what makes investors money over the long term.”
Build Your Net Worth Over Time
Building net worth can be a long-term goal; and while that goal will remain the same, you should plan for a lifetime of short-term goals that align with the different phases of your life.
Increase Your Contributions Each Year
“Create a plan and continually find ways to annually increase what you put toward your net worth,” said Rampton.
Raise Your Bottom Line
Don’t wait to hit financial rock bottom to start dedicating yourself to your money-making goals, said Sincero. “When we’re struggling, we usually take radical action only when we’re faced with hitting our definition of rock bottom,” she said.
“For me, rock bottom was when my checking account was teetering on going into the red. Then, and only then, I would push myself to make the sales calls I was putting off, go to networking meetings (and) write a ton of marketing emails… When I started raising my bottom line, I decided I could never go below $100 in my checking account, and I got my hustle on when I reached that amount instead of when I was reaching zero. Then I raised my bottom line to $500, then to $1,000 and so on. Making money is all about mindset, and by making the no-nonsense decision to never go below my bottom line, I massively increased my net worth.”
Consistently Invest Your Income
“Identify a specific percentage of your income that you will invest,” said Barnes. “Make this a bill that you have to pay each month to yourself.”
With these tips, you can start growing your net worth. Once you see the positive momentum you can achieve with small changes, it’ll be hard to stop, and you’ll be on your way to your desired net worth in no time.
Invest In Yourself
“Don’t be afraid to invest in yourself, as you are your greatest asset,” said Rose. “Hiring a business coach produced exponential returns (for my business), even though I was very skeptical in the beginning. Hiring a financial coach or a career coach could be the difference between staying stuck where you are or breaking through your self-imposed barriers and reaching your full potential.”
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