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Education

Millionaire Women Next Door

Every night before I go to sleep I snuggle into my bed and read on a book for inspiration and research. Some evenings I may only manage to read a small section but on other nights I can manage a couple of chapters. My progress seems incredibly slow but that’s okay.

At least I’m making progress.

You see, I have one serious disadvantage, and I know it. I find it hard to evenĀ conceive of owning $60,000 (the ballpark amount I would like to invest), much less understand a lot of the terms that they use in finance. I’ve no idea how in the world I’m going to pull this off or anything else. By reading as much as I can, I will be able to immerse myself in the terms of money. I’ll learn about people who have managed to make their fortunes starting with very little for inspiration, and eventually I’ll use the knowledge to figure out a practical way to achieve my goal.

Millionaire Women Next Door, I decided, was a good place to start. I already had the book and I loved the first book in the series when I read it several years ago.

It was a good decision. This book was filled with stories of women from broken and abusive relationships who had managed to rise above their challenges and build a net worth of well over a million dollars. I discovered that these women weren’t penny pinchers, either; wealthy women end up being significantly more generous to family, friends, and strangers than men are. They also managed to live beneath their means by dressing simply, living in homes far simpler than we expect the wealthy to live in, and primarily presenting themselves as middle class to the world at large.

That tells me that I’m already making progress. I live beneath my means, I’m actively saving money, and I’m not discussing my goal with anyone aside from my beloved Auntie, who has become my cheering section. Since I would love to become successful enough in this project quickly enough that she’s still alive to spoil a bit, just hearing her voice on the phone inspires me to keep working.

The most inspirational part of this book concerned Brian. He wrote a letter to the author on loose-leaf paper. His story was so motivational that the author decided to include it in a book that focuses on females to demonstrate that anyone can truly become wealthy.

Brian was considered a “dummy” in school. Being dyslexic (doubtless before we coined a term for the disability), he was a failure in school. He started washing cars for a local business, graduated to running his own car-detailing business by focusing on the high-end cars that he loved.

He made quite a bit of money doing that and had the toys to show from it but he wasn’t happy. That was when he decided to take the advice of a frugal friend, who encouraged him to sell all of the toys and invest in a four-plex “so he could live for free.”

Despite being uneducated and having a learning disability, this man has real estate holdings worth over $5 million and has a personal net worth of $1.6 million dollars. Wow.

So what can this guy teach me? He showed me that if he can become successful despite his challenges, I can too. He reminded me of the stories my father used to tell me about the days when he owned apartment buildings. My father spent the majority of my childhood filled with regret because he sold his buildings after he hurt his leg when I was six. He told me numerous times throughout my childhood that he had never been s well off as he had been when he had owned those buildings. He had been able to live rent-free in one of the units; despite the fact that it had cost a lot of money in maintenance and repairs, he confessed that he had made a small fortune when he had them.

I’ve read many books over the years that encouraged people to invest in real estate. People will always need a place to stay; in this economy many cannot afford to save up the money needed for a down payment, especially with the high-consumption lifestyle that is prevalent. When you toss in the fact that many people prefer to move multiple times instead of staying in a single place, it points to the fact that real estate rentals can be a profitable business.

I’ll have to think about that.

Categories
Happiness Uncategorized

Notes to your Future Self

Katie and I started a little tradition when we defrosted our refrigerator for the first time several years ago. We didn’t know how long it had been since we had defrosted it so sensing an opportunity we each wrote little notes to our future selves (Katie even left herself a gift) and stuck them in the back of the freezer for the next round.

My last note was dated April 16, 2016. In laborious chicken scratch, I told myself that “life sucks but it will get better.”

It definitely has!

So now the time as come to write myself another note. I think I’ll write more in this next one. In the meantime I have a nice, clean, defrosted refrigerator to enjoy.

 

Have you ever written a note for your future self to discover later? Please share your stories in the comments below.