The most underestimated secret weapon that will make you rich!
No, I don't mean my wife specifically. But your partner or spouse. I have read columns and columns from tons of investment and news sources, but this very important secret weapon never gets mentioned. There are all sorts of investment strategies...sure. There is also a very Fool orientied philosophy to pay off debt, live at or below your means, and invest for the long term.
This is something that I am adamantly a believer of. Outside of my house, I have been debt free since I was 23. I live well, but well below my means. I am a saver. I'm not cheap, but I do look for sales. I love investing, I love business, and I love reading and learning more.
So does my wife.
We have earned good money, but never 6 figures. Both of us received the same three very important things from our parents: 1) an understanding of the value of money, 2) our education, and 3) a debt free start to our adult life. No fat trust fund, no start up money. Just the basics.
We choose to live a simple life. We chose to buy an expensive, small condo in our city rather than a house in the burbs (and believe me: housing is expensive in Europe), but we both ride our bikes to work (and all over the place for that matter). We have one car. We have a big screen TV, but we spend our time with our kids playing or reading. We have fewer 'things', because our 1100 sqft. condo can't hold them. We live way below our means, but we take GREAT vacations -> more quality family time.
We will be millionaires before we are 40. The house will be paid off in 5 years. We will retire at 60 (or earlier).
We decided a number of years ago that we are our own best trustees of our wealth. We created our own 'tool' for financial models (via Excel, of course). We do our own research, and we try to convince the other that it is the right decision...which is always a tough sell. We have different investing philosophies and backgrounds due to our different cultures (German vs. American). But we have made it work. The first discussions were long, believe me. We have a boring investing strategy: buy and hold. Sell only when you have to. We are not traders.
Without such a strong partner - be it from a spending/saving standpoint or an investing standpoint - I would have accomplished much less. WE have accomplished a lot together, WE have a great strategy, and WE are the best financial advisors that we could have.
Not because we are smarter than the rest of you. But because we are a great team.
The next time you see a good financial article or make an buy/sell decision, ask your spouse or partner for their thoughts and ideas. If you can figure out how to get interested into your own financial well-being together, you will be better off. You are the best stewards of your money.
If you can figure out how to make it work, together, you will achieve more.
I have been wanting to write this for a while...I hope you enjoyed the post. Your comments are highly appreciated.