Now there is a common saying out there that states that “Rich people keep getting richer”, but do you ever question the reason why? Unless they are born into wealth, what separates the rich from the poor is their ability to manage their money and make smart choices with it.
One thing that many people fail to realize is that you will never build wealth or become rich if you do not pay attention to your finances. This post will cover 15 things that rich people do to get richer. All are all things that you can start implementing in your life today on your journey to build wealth.
1 | Rich People are Financially Literate
As referenced above, you can’t build wealth without having financial literacy. The challenge with this is that we aren’t taught about financial literacy in school. We aren’t given any instruction on what it is, or why it’s important.
Here are a few basics that everyone should get smart on to become financially literate:
- How to manage your money and budget regularly
- How to responsibly take out student loans, and the impact on paying loans to your ability to build wealth
- What is a credit score and how to build a high one
- Steps to purchase a home and how to do a cost/ benefit analysis of owning a home vs. renting
- Investing for financial independence (i.e., ability to live without NEEDING a job)
- How to plan for retirement and why you shouldn’t wait until your older
- How to start a side hustle in college or during your career
Now instead of just learning about financial literacy, the rich also continue to maintain their financial literacy. This means they never stop learning about how they can improve their finances for the better.
If you don’t feel like you have a good grasps on the topics listed above, here are a few books that I HIGHLY recommend that you read:
The Simple Path to Wealth by J.L. Collins – An excellent book for learning the principles of investing and financial independence. A must read for literally anyone who plans to retire one day.
I Will Teach You To Be Rich by Ramit Sethi – Highly educational and entertaining. Features case studies of people who have succeeded by following Ramit’s methods.
2 | Rich People Budget their Finances
The next thing that the rich do is budget their finances. Now, this is most important for those working to become wealthy. Why? Because it’s crucial to know where EVERY dollar goes. Here are a few reasons why everyone should budget:
Building Net Worth
For example, you can make over six figures a year and still not have anything to show for it if you don’t budget. And someone who earns $50,000 / year, but is better at managing their money could potentially save / invest more than the one with the high salary. This would allow them to actually build more wealth than the person with the higher salary in the long run.
Getting Rid of Unnecessary Expenses
Another reason why you should budget is because when tracking your expenses it’s easy to see where you’re overspending or just unnecessarily spending. You can then make active changes to how you spend, saving you more money in the long run.
When you know how much you spend and plan for large expenses, that allows you to avoid any debt that you don’t need. Which ultimately means money is cheaper for you. And by avoiding your debt, your net worth won’t take the hit either.
3 | Rich People Live Below Their Means
Something that rich people do consistently is live below their means. Referenced in the last section, living below your means is the only way that you can build wealth. Why do you think that so many sports players wind up broke once they stop playing? It’s because they do not live within their means. So when the payments stop, their money is GONE.
And this problem is not just related to the rich. Here’s a scary fact: most Americans consistently live about their means, so by the time they are ready to retire, there is very little to show for their hard work. Don’t let this be you. It’s not too late to evaluate your finances and see how you can start living within your means.
Note, when I say “within your means” I’m also speaking to getting out of the “paycheck to paycheck” lifestyle that many Americans fall into as well. But getting excessive spending under control is the first step to organized finances. Once under control, then then your focus should turn to how to save and invest more money.
4 | Rich People Have a Growth Money Mindset
Now, this may sound a bit “fuzzy”, but having a growth money mindset makes all the difference in your ability to see great progress with your finances. The rich believe that they can make more money and grow the money they have. In addition, they ACT on this belief. This means they look for opportunities to bring more money into their lives and do it actively.
The reason why this belief is so important is because there are many people who are resigned to being “poor” and never even try to do anything to change it. They accept their circumstances outright as just “the way things are”.
Interested in learning how to improve your money mindset? I highly recommend that you check out this course by Natalie Bacon.
RELATED: How to Change Your Money Mindset
5 | Rich People Aren’t Lazy
Building upon the last point, the Rich aren’t lazy. They make valuable use of their time. Whether that be reading or coming up with new ways to make money, their time is always used efficiently. Just think about how hard working the uber wealthy like Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerburg, and Jeff Bezos are. At this point there is not any need for them to work at all, but they still do it anyway.
“If you trust in yourself…. and believe in your dreams…. and follow your star… you’ll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren’t so lazy.”Terry Pratchatt
6 | Rich People Don’t Try to Keep Up with the Joneses
The rich don’t feel any need to buy the next new shiny object to show off to their friends or neighbors. They are happy with the house they live in, the car they drive, and the clothes they have.
Showing off new purchases – especially for those who love to spend – can produce a bit of a high in the moment. But it’s short lived. New things become old quite fast and soon it’s just another thing that you own.
If you can’t tell by the information presented so far in this post, you should only buy what you need. In the long run you – and your pockets – will be all the more happier.
7 | Rich People Don’t take on Unnecessary Debt
The rich don’t take on any debt that they don’t need. Debt is so detrimental to building wealth – let’s break down two of the key reasons why:
- Money is more expensive when you take on debt. For example, say you purchase a car for $20,000 with a 5 year loan and 5% interest. This means that over the life of the loan, you’ll actually pay $22,645 for the car. That’s $2,645 that could have been saved or invested. This is much, much worse when you take on credit card debt, where interest rates can exceed 20%.
- Debt decreases your net worth. The larger the debt, the more it negatively impacts your total wealth. Something to take into careful consideration when taking on particularly large debt.
For regular purchases, your motto should be: If I can’t afford it, don’t buy it. When I’m speaking to “regular purchases” I mean things like clothes, vacations, and furniture.
For larger purchases, like cars, look for the lowest prices and interest rates. And like the above, if you can afford not to finance, buy it outright.
8 | Rich People Monitor Their Net Worth
Tracking net worth is something that should become a regular habit. I find that it’s great motivation to stay on track with your spending and saving goals. As mentioned above, it’s your net worth that makes your “rich” and not the amount of money you earn or on the fancy things you buy.
Your goal should be to see your net worth increase over time. If it doesn’t, this means you are stagnant, and if it stays that way, you will never be rich. This is why tracking it regularly is so important.
Not sure where to start with tracking your net worth? Here is the simply way to do it:
- Add up all your assets. This includes your cash, investments, and physical property.
- Add up all your liabilities. This is all the debt that you have incurred.
- Subtract your liabilities from your assets. This will equal your net worth.
Want more detailed information? Download the guide below!
9 | Rich People Build Multiple Streams of Income
One sure way to never be rich is to rely on one source of income. The rich are always looking for new ways to add money to their pockets. The more money that comes in, the more that they are able to put into other investments or ventures.
There are many ways that you can start today in building additional streams of income. Just to get you thinking, here are a few examples:
- Start a Blog: This is a great way to earn side income once you get it up and running. Note, this is more of a long play, as it takes time to build traffic to your site.
- Drive for Uber: If you love driving, this is a great way to earn a bit of side cash; particularly if you are struggling to make ends meet
- Tutor Students Online: You can tutor those wanting to learn English on a site like iTalki, and you don’t really need any more experience than being a speaker of the English language.
- Rent Out a Room: Have extra space that is unused in your house? Use a site like AirBnb to rent it out for extra cash. There are even sites that allow you to rent parking spaces and storage space.
- Start a Service-Based Business: If you have an online skill that you would like to offer up (think Graphic Design or Digital Marketing), you can offer that to people for a fee using sites like Fiverr.
This is just a small taste of what you can start doing to earn additional income. Want more ideas? Here’s a post of the 50 Best Side Hustle Ideas that you can start from home.
10 | Rich People Invest Their Money
In case you haven’t heard it before investing is the ultimate KEY to building wealth. Investing is what makes the money you save grow and ultimately beat inflation. Want to see some evidence? Let’s use some examples to bring it to life:
Example 1: Putting Money in an Investment Account
Sally is scared of investing money, so has decided that she will save money in her (high-interest) savings account as well. She has $1000 in her account to start with, and makes regular payments of $500/month into the account for the next ten years. Historically, high-interest savings accounts have yielded between 1-2%, so let’s assume a return of 1.5% in this example. At the end of 10 years, Sally will have $65,932 in her savings account.
Example 2: Investing Money in a Brokerage
Sally puts $1000 into an index fund (VTSAX in this example) in her 401K, and then makes regular payments of $500/month for the next ten years. Given past performance of this fund, let’s assume a return of 9%. At the end of 10 years, Sally will have $99,934 in her investment account.
As you’ll see, that’s over $30,000 more than just putting the money away in savings. That’s the power of investing and compounding interest. And the benefits only improve based on the amount of money you save.
If investing scares you in any way, just think about it this way. If you don’t invest, your money will decrease in value over time, as its value will likely not beat inflation over time. If that’s not a kick in the pants, I don’t know what is.
RELATED POST: Review of Worthy Bonds
11 | Rich People Write Down Their Goals
I’m a firm believer that you should write down all your goals, in every area of life. There is very strong evidence that writing your goals down makes them stick. When documenting your goals, I recommend that you write them out by category. Here are the categories that I like to track towards:
- Financial Goals: Similar to budgeting, you need to set financial goals where you plan your future for the next 5, 10, and 20 years. How will you pay down the debt that you have? How will you plan for your next major purchase (e.g., home purchase)? When do you want to retire? You should be able to answer all these questions with no problem.
- Career Goals: What areas of your career would you like to improve? When do you want your next promotion or how do you plan to grow your business?
- Relationship Goals: How do you want to improve your current relationships for the better? What new relationships do you want to bring into your life (e.g., significant other, mentor)?
- Home Goals: In what ways can you improve your home? What areas need to be cleaned out? What should you sell?
If you like writing down your goals on paper, I recommend using a Moleskine. You can get them small enough to carry around and update as needed.
- MOLESKINE CAHIER: This 5 x 8.25 ruled journal has a flexible heavy-duty customizable cardboard cover, a pocket for loose...
- CLASSIC DESIGN: The Cahier Journal is a favorite among avid notetakers. Its cardboard cover makes it ideal for...
If you are more of an online person, I highly recommend using Notion. It’s a great app for organizing everything. It can be a bit overwhelming to starting using it, so sharing the below video for some inspiration.
12 | Rich People Take Strategic Risks
It’s true what they say: “No risk, no reward”. If you never take any risks, you will never grow. And that’s for you as a person and for your wealth. Investing is a risk, but as you saw in the example above, it will bring in so much more money than just hoarding money.
There is a reason why some of the wealthiest people out there are entrepreneurs. There is so much money in owning your own business, but starting a business is a big risk. Whenever you take risks, always be sure to calculate them carefully. But be sure that fear isn’t the only thing stopping you from achieving the dreams you desire.
13 | Rich People Network with Successful People
This is one area that is often overlooked by those looking to move up in the world. There is so much value in learning from those who have been successful in their careers and/or building wealth. You don’t have to learn everything on your own, and taking on a mentor is a great way to bring some of their knowledge to support your personal success.
I know that getting started in this area could be tough, especially during these times where most of us are virtual. One great way to get started is through Facebook groups. A great group to join is ChooseFI, which features many who have built wealth and become financially independent. I’ve learned so much by being a part of the group myself.
14 | Rich People Focus on Personal Health
If you aren’t healthy, you aren’t your best. And if you aren’t your best, you won’t be able to excel in any area of your life. And this includes growing your wealth. This is the reason why the rich dedicate time everyday to eat right and to exercise regularly. If these areas have not been priorities for you currently, it’s best to start small.
Add a daily walk to your morning routine to get fresh air and the joints moving. No matter how young or old you are, we humans spend far too much time sitting down. The more you move the healthier you, your heart, and your hips will be.
Diet-wise, work on adding more fresh fruits and vegetables to each meal. And over time, work to cut out excessive sugars and processed foods. You definitely feel better for it.
15 | Rich People Never Stop Learning
Whether it be reading an insightful book or taking a class, the rich are always learning new skills to improve their understanding of the world. The more you understand the world around you, the better you’ll ultimately be able to bend it to your needs.
If you’re looking for a few additional recommendations on good reads to just generally improve your knowledge about wealth building, here you go:
In Summary | Things Rich People Do to Get Richer
That’s the list of the 15 things rich people do to continue to increase their wealth. If you get started today, you can start the journey to building wealth too. And it doesn’t matter what your current income level is either.
If you are still not quite sure where to start with getting your finances in order, check out our course Organized Finances. In this course, you’ll learn how to:
- Improve your Money Mindset & Happiness
- Money Basics: Banks, Savings, and Credit Cards
- Understanding Your Personal Finances
- Organizing Your Finances
- Building Wealth (Getting Richer)
Learn more about the Organized Finances course here! (And get it for 50% off!)
Last update on 2023-12-09 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API