Accumulating wealth takes a whole lot of hard work, years of commitment, dedication and discipline and yes, sometimes, a little luck. But sustaining and building your asset worth is often the hardest part of wealth management. The history of mankind is littered with as many tales of wealth accumulation is it is of wealth squandering. The point is that accumulating wealth is only one step of the process. Building, diversifying and protecting your wealth rely on a different mindset and more often than not, some smarts, a lot of patience and outside help.
By analyzing the financial management habits of the ultra-wealthy, you can easily establish some common ground. In fact, many of the tips and practices used by the top 1% are accessible to any one with capital, the desire to build wealth and the ability to take a long-term view on wealth management and protection.
Here are seven smart ways to build wealth faster that have a proven track record, are readily applicable and easy to execute.
Treat wealth as a marathon, not a sprint
Wealth advisors, irrespective of your asset value, will tell you that getting rich quick is one of the more common myths around. Patience, patience, patience is the mantra many wealth advisors are quick to extoll. An article in Time magazine recently focused on how the super rich got to where they are, the results reinforce perseverance. Those who responded gave an estimate acquired of just 10% averagely via inheritance, Whereas 52% were raised from directly earned income while 32% from investments. Even more poignantly, on average state, those interrogated by Time alluded that they started saving money at the age of 14, and entered the work force at 15. In other words, start young and play the long game.
Invest in yourself
This is not a self help statement, well not overtly. By investing in yourself, save whatever you can, whenever you can, however you can. Very few wealthy individuals maintain their lifestyles without a staple source of liquidity that is available at a moment’s notice. Also, start as early as you can. Very few people will openly admit that starting to save for your future or children’s education at the twilight of your career is a sound financial decision.
It is virtually impossible to escape having some level of debt on your balance sheet at any given time, but its impact on your day-to-day financial position can be minimized by following several steps. Firstly, understand your debt threshold and what you’re willing to live with and can capably manage. Secondly, don’t overextend yourself. Look at Warren Buffet for inspiration. “You really don't need leverage in this world much. If your smart, you're going to make a lot of money without borrowing.” Enough said really.
Only invest in capital markets products you understand
Funds, equity of private hedges and structured products all sound sexy and a sure way to further wealth accumulation. In some senses, you can’t argue with this, but for the vast majority of investors, it’s a better strategy to stick with vanilla products. Stocks and bonds generally provide the most consistent returns for investors and should form the bulk of any capital market portfolio focused on accumulation and sustainability. Alternative investments carry a greater risk cache and over-exposure has repeatedly hurt many retail investors.
Be a monk
A lot can be said for simplicity and a life of minimized excess. To maintain wealth, treat every spending situation through the lens of “do I need this?”. When buying a car, a house or watch, do a cost-benefit analysis. If it’s not going substantially change your lifestyle or position, go for it. If it beyond your means, this is a red flag. Simply your wealth management by filtering all major purchases through your monk’s eyes.
Cycles come and go, but risks are a constant. Understand it. Respect it. Embrace it. Remember the words of Theodore Roosevelt, “Risk is like fire If controlled it will help you; if uncontrolled it will rise up and destroy you.” In other words, anticipate that what goes up inevitably goes down, and your ongoing mitigation of risk will define how your fare across all cycles.
Don’t go it alone
An entire multi-billion dollar industry exists to help in building wealth and growing your asset value. Financial advisors nationwide have more options than ever before to cater to your wealth ambitions. This is not only limited to allocations in capital markets, but increasingly a handy relationship to have been considering moves into real estate investment, taxation implications and estate planning.