Lessons I learned from the book Rich Dad, Poor Dad

Originally posted here.

 

Ask any investor, entrepreneur or savvy businessperson what’s on their reading list, and I guarantee you Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad, Poor Dad is on it.

 

Oprah Winfrey endorsed it, and Will Smith used it to teach his kids about financial literacy and responsibility. Even Donald Trump gave it the thumbs up! But the lessons in Rich Dad, Poor Dad are not strictly for millionaires.

 

Whether you’re looking to invest in real estate for cash flow, or as a primary residence, there are some principles to think about when it comes to using real estate to “get out of the proverbial rat race” (more on that later).

 

First, understand the difference between an asset and a liability

Assets Liabilities
Real Estate Mortgages
Stocks Consumer Loans
Bonds Credit Cards
Notes
Intellectual Property

 

The term “rat race” refers to the perpetual cycle so many find themselves in – chasing wages, only to pay higher taxes. Those stuck in the rat race rely on wages as their primary source of income, and treat their home as their primary asset as opposed to investing in income-generating assets.

 

The book reveals this to be one of three potential classes:

  • Poor: These people have day-to-day expenses, and little else.
  • Middle class: Often purchase liabilities (i.e., a car), instead of assets, and use their home as their primary asset instead of investing in income-generating assets.
  • Rich: The rich build a solid base of income-generating assets. They acquire more assets & investments to continue to enjoy constant cash flow that exceeds their expenses.

The old adage “the rich get richer” is true to a certain extent, as the principles of cash-flow generation are taught through families and passed down. But now, Kiyosaki has shared his secrets in the book and accompanying educational materials.

 

Here are some of my favourite lessons in wealth generation to share with you.

 

Three Main Management Skills

  1. Management of Cash Flow
  2. Management of Systems (Includes time with family and time for yourself)
  3. Management of People

 

Five Obstacles to Financial Independence

  1. Fear. Don’t play it safe and cling to what you think is secure. If you don’t go for it and think big, you won’t be able to earn big.
  2. Cynicism. Don’t listen to advice of others who are not doing what you intend to do. Listen to yourself and those who are doing what you aim to do.
  3. Laziness. Greed is good and fights laziness. Think about the freedom and money you’ll have and you will put in those extra work hours. Change your thinking. Instead of saying “I can’t afford it.” Ask yourself “How can I afford it?” Challenge your mind to create solutions.
  4. Bad Habits. Spending habits should turn into saving and investing habits.
  5. Arrogance. Don’t think you know everything there is to know about money. Listen to others. Enrol in useful seminars.

 

Ten Steps to Awaken Your Financial Genius

  1. Find a reason. Think of the freedom financial independence could afford you – the lifestyle wherein you control your own time. Also think of what you don’t want, i.e. “I don’t like being an employee” or “I don’t like that I can’t afford the life I want”.
  2. Use the power of choice. You can choose to watch MTV, or watch CNBC. It is how you choose to use your time and energy everyday that warrants financial success in the long run.
  3. Choose your friends carefully. It pays to have friends who are focused and achieving their goals. Surround yourself with like-minded friends you can learn from, and distance yourself from those who seek to knock you down.
  4. Master a formula. Learn a new one, and learn fast. Also remember that what may work for someone else may not necessarily work for you – set your own goals and create an action plan.
  5. Pay yourself first. Practice self-discipline by keeping expenses low. Tenants can pay for your expenses if you rent out apartments or mini-storage, for instance. Savings are used for investing and creating more money, not for paying bills.
  6. Pay your broker well. Attorneys, accountants, stockbrokers, and real estate brokers will have more incentive to work harder for you. If they make more money, it means you make more money as well. 3-7% is a good incentive.
  7. Be an Indian giver. It’s the concept behind ROI (return on investment). Invest, and then take the initial money out after a time when the investment has earned for you.
  8. Buy luxuries last. Let the income from your growing assets buy the new car. Wait for your asset base to grow first. Middle class people buy luxuries first – and usually on credit.
  9. Find yourself a hero. When you play golf, you can imagine you are Tiger Woods. When you do business, you can ask yourself, “What would George Soros have done if he was in my place right now?”
  10. Teach and you shall receive. As in money, love or friendship, if you give without expecting anything in return, you receive more.

According to Kiyosaki, the Japanese have a belief in three great powers:

  1. The Sword (weapons)
  2. The Jewel (money)
  3. The Mirror (self-awareness)

 

The most valuable of the three is the mirror, or knowing yourself. Without this knowledge you will have no direction in life and in your business.

 

As an investor, I know many of these lessons to be true. Over the years I have overcome many obstacles navigating the waters on my real estate journey, and I know that I can help you achieve the same success.

 

Together, we can conquer your fears, make an action plan and create wealth through real estate that will set you on the path to financial freedom.

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