If not now, then when?

If kryptonite is the only chemical substance that could kill Superman, procrastination and fear is the only thing that can (and will) kill your wealth plans. Therefore my question to you is this, if not now… when? Let me explain…

Over the years, I have witnessed first hand what works and what doesn’t when it comes to making money. The saying is true, money (alone) doesn’t create happiness, but it can certainly create unnecessary stress in your life if you don’t have it, or if you don’t have enough of it.

If you think about it, money is necessary (rightly or wrongly) as it puts food in your mouth and a roof over your head. Your relationship with money, and your perception of it, will determine the quality of life you will live today, tomorrow, and in retirement.

Let’s go with the assumption that you want to live a life full of choices – you want that house, in that suburb, driving around in that car, holidaying to that destination, sending your kids to private school, and anything else that gives you joy… which could include helping the kids financially, your family, or donating to charity.

Having choices is a beautiful thing, but choices won’t get handed to you on a silver platter. The truth is you have to make it happen. Winning the lottery is not a strategy, it’s a 1-in-10 million chance of striking it rich… even then the stats say that a large percentage of winners lose the lot (or near enough to the lot). Why do you think this is the case? You guessed it, their relationship with money is in their DNA – winning the lottery doesn’t change that.

Back to my original question. If not now… when?

Procrastination and fear will hold you back… if you allow it.

In my daily work, I comes across people contemplating their next move. They want it, they can afford it, but they create this negative emotion in their mind that makes them feel insecure or guilty, or even worse they talk themselves out of it. For example…

I’m sure you get the drift. It’s never going to be the right time and those around you will put doubt in your mind – if you let it.

The truth is this. The hour glass of life doesn’t stop for anyone. If you want something bad enough, you can have it or you can experience it, but you must plan for it to make it happen and you have to act – thinking about it won’t bring it to life.

A good friend of mine wrote a book some time ago, which I love reading, and a quote he wrote is this… “Don’t die with music still left in you” (Jacob Galea – Birth of the Super You)

Making money is only hard if you think it is. The issue for many people is not their inability to make money, it’s the trap of thinking that making money has to be an overnight success. There are many businesses preying on the vulnerable promising the quick fix. Here’s a newsflash, it doesn’t happen that way and it certainly doesn’t work.

Making money and creating wealth takes a long time, in fact to create wealth in a predictable way you need to buy quality investment assets (like residential property), hold them, and then ride the ups and downs that comes with investment cycles over two to three decades – yep that’s 20 to 30 years. There is no short cut.

The sooner you start, and the more you accumulate (within your affordability), the more choices you will have over time as your wealth increases.

Of course you can make money from earning a wage or from running a business, but if you want to thrive and not just survive, you need to consider leveraging your household income and your equity position into assets that have a proven history of growing in value over time – like residential property. Only then will you have created more equity and more wealth to give you the money you need to have more choices.

Important information: This content has been prepared without taking account of the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular individual. It does not constitute formal advice. For this reason, any individual should, before acting, consider the appropriateness of the information, having regard to the individual’s objectives, financial situation and needs and, if necessary, seek appropriate professional advice.

A guide to smart money choices by age group

Life is a journey – sometimes positive sometimes negative – it’s certainly not a straight line. Right now many people are feeling flat, having been whacked with COVID-19 – with many feeling financial pressure like never before. It’s important to keep perspective and realise that your current situation is not permanent. As humans we all share a common valuable resource – time. You have ‘time’ to get things back on track no matter what age. Let me explain…

A good friend of mine has just launched a business aimed at helping the over 50’s. He asked me to contribute to his content by writing a blog relating to money and finance – aimed at the over 50’s. Writing the blog inspired me to write about the different decades we experience throughout life and what sort of smart money choices we should consider making throughout life’s journey.

The strategies I share come from a place of experience and success with money. I hope it helps you in some way.

Setting the right foundation in your 20’s…

In your 20’s, you have time. The money train ahead of you is a long one. You have an amazing opportunity to set a solid foundation for when you are ready to hang your boots and enjoy your wealth in your later years.

In your 20’s life will seem like its never ending – but let me share with you the secret to creating wealth – in a predictable way… time (the most valuable resource we all commonly share).

A concept that’s also important to note here is ‘patience’. As Warren Buffet once said… “wealth is the transfer from the impatient to the patient”.

Basic money principles to consider in your 20’s include:

Leverage is key in your 30’s…

Once you’ve reached the milestone of 30, your career is likely to be humming along and your income is now higher than it was a decade ago. Remember this… if you’re standing still, you’re going backwards.

In your 30’s you still have a lot of time ahead, which means you can take (calculated) risks knowing that you have time to fix any mistakes. The concept of leverage is a key fundamental during this decade – as you should consider being aggressive with leveraging your income sources and equity position (i.e. sow the seeds for a secure financial future).

Basic money principles to consider in your 30’s include:

Your 40’s is the perfect time to accelerate your wealth plans…

Once you’re in your 40’s, you’ve no doubt made some – or even plenty – money mistakes, but hopefully you’ve learnt from them as well. If you haven’t made any mistakes, it just means you haven’t really tried – have you?

You have at least another 10 to 20 years to be aggressive with your wealth accumulation plans. Sure the money train is shorter, but you still have plenty of time to create a solid financial future.

If you’ve made money and investment mistakes the previous decade, you need to be careful with asset selection during your 40’s to ensure you only buy quality assets that have strong growth prospects. If it’s residential property you are dabbling with, get the right advice and ensure you only buy investment grade property.

Loan structuring is equally important here so be sure to engage a Mortgage Specialist with depth of experience, and hopefully someone with runs on the board when it comes to money success. If this is something I can help you with, please feel free to reach out at anytime.

Upgrading your family home could be on the cards, or upgrading location perhaps? Buying a more expensive home has merit as you can always downsize down the track and enjoy tax-free capital gains. At time of writing, capital gains tax doesn’t apply when disposing of your family home (please ensure you seek tax advice from a suitably qualified and licensed tax professional before acting on any tax advice).

Basic money principles to consider in your 40’s include:

A major milestone 50 – time to consider consolidation…

For some, turning 50 can be a mental milestone as much as it is an age milestone. Using a golf game analogy, the question for many at this point is this… what can I do differently when playing the back 9 to what I did in the first 9 holes to win at the game of money?

If you still have a mortgage over the family home, you should consider this as your top priority to ensure you don’t retire with home loan debt. If your plan is to downsize in order to retire the outstanding mortgage on your home – with the surplus funds – then that’s fine if this is your strategy/plan.

At this point you may be contemplating working well beyond 60, which is fantastic as it means you’re healthy, and happy with your day to day work. Perhaps your work gives you purpose?

However you want to be in a position where you have choice – work if  you want to not because you have to.

Basic money principles to consider in your 50’s include:

60 and beyond – passive cash flow is king…

If you still have debt at this point, hopefully it’s investment related debt and your family home is paid off.

Whilst investment debt also needs to be paid off at some point, you should have adequate investment assets which you can consolidate – or dispose of – as a debt elimination strategy. The trick is to have built up a sufficient asset base to provide you with choice.

Your investments need to consider your future cash flow requirements to ensure you continue living your desired lifestyle well into retirement.

Basic money principles to consider when you’re 60 and beyond are more simple and include:

In summary…

Of course your attitude and your relationship with money will be different to the next person. Your money habits will always be unique to you – just like your handwriting is unique to you.

In my daily work I work with all varying age groups. The above strategies are a guide only – as my objective is to help you consider various strategies to ensure you remain on track no matter what noise is going on around you.

In closing I would like to remind you of something which I’m sure you already know – work to live, don’t live to work. Enjoy your money during your life journey (at any age) as life can change for you – just like that.

Some say that money isn’t everything – whilst there’s truth in this believe, money certainly provides options and choice, and allows you to enjoy life’s pleasures and life’s experiences.

Finally I would like to add… don’t become a hostage to money as it can be a trap… but only if you let it..!!

Important information: This content has been prepared without taking account of the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular individual. It does not constitute formal advice. For this reason, any individual should, before acting, consider the appropriateness of the information, having regard to the individual’s objectives, financial situation and needs and, if necessary, seek appropriate professional advice.