One of the questions I get asked the most is “Sean/Wealth Dad, what money material do you read on a daily or weekly basis?”
To be honest, outside of the Wall Street Journal, I really don’t go out of my way to read about money or investing that much anymore. But there is one blog (ESIMoney) that I’ve been reading for years, and what I read specifically is the millionaire interviews that he conducts (usually posted weekly).
ESIMoney just recently released his 314th millionaire interview, and it was on a married couple who are in their mid-to-late-50s and they are worth $4.7 million.
I’ve continued to read ESIMoney’s millionaire interviews every week for years now because I love to read about the real stories of the wealthy, and reading their experiences helps teach and motivate me on my own journey!
If you are familiar with my teachings or social media posts, you know that I pretty much preach the following for building wealth:
- Focus on dramatically increasing your income
- Invest >=20% of your monthly take-home pay
- Be mindful of your spending
- Buy and hold index funds/ETFs for the long-term
Knowing that I would like to highlight some great quotes from ESIMoney’s most recent millionaire interview on the couple worth $4.7 million that further reinforce what I constantly preach.
Growing Your Income
“My advice would be that if you don’t get promoted within a few years then look for a job at another company where you can boost your income quicker. Most companies aren’t loyal to you so you may as well look out for yourself. Nobody cares about your income more than you. You have to be a little selfish while still being a team player.”
“My wife makes $115,000 and I made $175,000 in 2021. We were around the $220,000 mark for many years. We both started off below $20,000 per year (the late 1980s) but steadily moved up year after year. I hit $100,000 about 20 years ago and my wife was similar.”
Saving Money & Mindful Spending
“We save about 30% of our pay.”
“Obviously, automating is the easiest way to invest money. This works great for 401k, IRA’s, and brokerage. Investing first really helps. You just don’t have money sitting around to spend.”
“You really have to watch your spending. You don’t have to keep up with the Jones’s. They don’t care about you anyway.”
“I’d say more than 50% of our investments are in index funds. Mainly the total stock market and S&P 500 funds.”
“We have always tried to keep expenses low and indexing is the best way to do that.”
Now I don’t just look specifically for stuff that lines up with what I think and preach, but these are usually the commonalities in many of these millionaire interviews. The reason that this is the case is that the principles of building wealth are fairly universal and easy (although implementing them is not so easy for many).
The primary financial nuggets I took away from this interview were:
- They both focused on increasing their income as both eventually cleared the 6-figure income mark (eventually made $200,000+ together)
- They saved/invested >=30% of their income and invest primarily in broad market index funds (one reason being to save on fees)
- They are mindful of their spending and do NOT care about “keeping up with the Joneses” (neighbors, friends, family, colleagues)
I encourage you to read the full in-depth interview (below) and take a deeper look into a couple whose “been there and done that” by accumulating a net worth of $4.7 million by their 50s: