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Everyone Should Know About These Money Saving Tips from Billionaires

Everyone Should Know About These Money Saving Tips from Billionaires

There are plenty of billionaires in this world nowadays, but exactly how they got to that level of financial comfort may surprise you. They are not all the flashy, big spenders we see on many Hollywood tv specials. In fact, many of them attribute their success to living quite frugally. Here are some of the best money saving tips from some of the world’s most wealthy people.

Michael Bloomberg
Net Worth: $34.3 Billion

Stick with what works best for you. Michael Bloomberg is well known as one of the most controversial mayors of New York City, and majority share holder of Bloomberg L.P., an international financial information company. But one thing most people don’t know about Mayor Bloomberg is the fact that for the past 10 years he has only owned two pairs of work shoes. They are both black loafers, and provide the most comfort and functionality for the billionaire. He knows that they are what works best for him and chooses to save his money for other things rather than spend a small fortune on shoes that he will never really wear.

Bill Gates
Net Worth: $79 Billion

Learn from your past mistakes. Making mistakes with money is a common occurrence in life. We all do it, but those of us who ultimately achieve financial success in life not only make those mistakes, but more importantly, they learn from them. Bill Gates, well known as one of the richest people in the world once said, “It’s fine to celebrate success, but it is more important to heed the lessons of failure.”

Ingvar Kamprad
Net Worth: $53 Billion

Avoid unnecessary spending. Ingvar Kamprad, founder of IKEA, believes that some spending is just not needed even if you do have plenty of funds to blow. Like many other super wealthy individuals, he prefers to fly economy class rather than in a private jet. In his memoir, Kamprad wrote: “We don’t need flashy cars, impressive titles, uniforms or other status symbols. We rely on our strength and our will!”

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Warren Buffett
Net Worth: $66.1 Billion

Buy a home that fits your needs. Warren Buffet is the classic example of this rule. He still lives in the Omaha, Nebraska home that he bought in 1958 for a mere $31,500. Despite having billions of dollars at his disposal, Buffet finds no reason to live in an enormous mansion just because he can. Instead he is comfortable in his modest 5 bedroom stucco house located in the heart of our nation.

Oprah Winfrey
Net Worth: $2.9 Billion

Find your true passion. This simple tip has paid off big time for Oprah. She has been quoted as saying, “You become what you believe. You are where you are today in your life based on everything you have believed.” Figuring out what you love to do, and then pursuing it with everything you’ve got will often result in the greatest of life’s rewards.

Richard Branson
Net Worth: $5.1 Billion

Set goals and do everything in your power to reach them. British Billionaire and founder of the Virgin Group, Richard Branson once started out with just a list of goals. They weren’t even the most realistic ones, but he set those goals and went for them. Little did he know what his goal setting could one day achieve.

Carlos Slim Helú
Net Worth: $78.5 Billion

Start saving your money early. Carlos Slim, a Mexican businessman who was recently edged out by Bill Gates as the richest man in the world, offers one of the most important tips when it comes to enjoying financial success. Start saving your earnings as early as possible. The sooner you start saving your money and managing it properly, the better off you will be later in life no matter what kind of work you do.

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John Caudwell
Net Worth: $2.6 Billion

Use alternate modes of transportation. This English businessman has made his fortune in the mobile phone industry, but that doesn’t mean he finds it necessary to drive around in a flashy car and show off his wealth. In fact, he still enjoys walking, riding his bike and even using public transportation to get from here to there.

David Cheriton
Net Worth: $1.7 Billion

Learn what you can do yourself. David Cheriton was one of the first investors in Google and enjoys quite a nice return on his initial $100,000 investment made in 1998. Yet he refuses to go to a barber and cuts his own hair. Even this seemingly small savings can add up especially when you adopt it to other areas of your life. Just think of how much money you could be giving other people to do things that you are perfectly capable of doing yourself.

Mark Zuckerberg
Net Worth: $30 Billion

Drive a modest card. Even the founder of Facebook lives frugally in many ways. One of which is the fact that he drives a modest, $30,000 Acura, entry-level sedan. He could have any car he wanted to drive him from here to there, or a fleet of them for that matter, but instead he chooses this simple and practical vehicle.

John Donald MacArthur
Net Worth: $1 Billion at death in 1978 ($3.7 Billion Today)

Make a budget and stick to it. MacArthur, who was the sole shareholder of Bankers Life and Casualty Company of Chicago, started his business career off with one small acquisition and then built around it. Despite living in an era that was all about Hollywood glitz and glamour, MacArthur refused to buy into this craze and lived very frugally. He never owned extravagant luxuries, never had any press agents, and kept a $25,000 annual budget.

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Rose Kennedy
Net Worth: Unknown at death in 1995

Be creative and look for alternatives in spending. Rose Kennedy is most famous for being the infamous family’s matriarch, but her money saving tactics were quite surprising considering the amount of wealth the family had accumulated. Instead of buying scrap paper reams, she would wait until the end of the year and buy old desk calendars that had just worn out their usefulness. These tended to be much cheaper than the scrap paper, allowing her to save on even the littlest things.

T. Boone Pickens
Net Worth: $1 Billion

Make a shopping list and only carry the cash you need for that list. Oil mogul and billionaire, Pickens always practices one sure way to help save money; he never carries more money in his wallet than he needs. He makes a grocery list before heading to the store, only buys the items on that list, and only carries with him enough money to make that purchase. You can’t spend money you don’t have, right?

Jim Walton
Net Worth: $34.7 Billion

You don’t always need the latest and greatest. Walton, youngest son of WalMart founder Sam Walton, lives a frugal life just like his father always taught him. Despite Walton’s great fortune, he still drives a pick-up truck which is over 15 years old. He realizes that it is better to get all you can out of your vehicles rather than driving around the flashiest or most expensive one you can get your hands on.

Donald Trump
Net Worth: $3.9 Billion

Work hard. Donald Trump attributes all of his success to his work ethic. Many outsiders see Trump as “lucky” in the world of finance, but Trump says that luck comes from hard work. “If your work pays off, which it most likely will, people might say you’re just lucky. Maybe so, because you’re lucky enough to have the brains to work hard!” he says.

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Robert Kuok
Net Worth: $11.5 Billion

Seize opportunities while you can. Robert Kuok, the richest man in Malaysia, lives simply by the rules he learned from his mother, to never be greedy, never take advantage of others, and always have high morals when it comes to dealings with money.

Kuok explains that in order to become successful financially, you must be courageous and always seize opportunities as they come your way, even when others doubt your ability.

Li Ka-shing
Net Worth: $31 Billion

Live a humble life. This man’s incredible empire spans 52 countries and employs over 270,000, yet he was a school dropout. He attributes his incredible success to living a life that is humble and simple. When you are just starting out, you must teach yourself how to live off less and adapt to a lifestyle that is appropriate and not spectacular.

Jack Ma
Net Worth: $10 Billion

The customer always comes first. Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba Group and self-made billionaire, believes that customers should always be priority #1. Behind them comes employees and last in line should be shareholders. Ma believes that a person’s attitude how they live their life is more important than their abilities.

Howard Schultz
Net Worth: $2.2 Billion

Realize that money is not everything. Howard Schultz, Chairman and CEO of Starbucks, stated that a person’s values are far more important than their net worth. He is quoted as saying, “I never wanted to be on any billionaire’s list. I never have defined myself by net worth. I always try to define myself by my values.”

Featured photo credit: Kris Krug via flickr.com

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Last Updated on August 20, 2019

How to Set Financial Goals and Actually Meet Them

How to Set Financial Goals and Actually Meet Them

Finances can push anyone to the point of extreme anxiety and worry. Easier said than done, planning finances is not an egg meant for everyone’s basket. And that’s why most of us are often living pay check to pay check. But did anyone tell you that it is actually not a tough task to meet your financial goals?

In this article, we will explore ways on how to set financial goals and then actually meet them with ease.

5 Steps to Set Financial Goals

Though setting financial goals might seem to be a daunting task but if one has the will and clarity of thought, it is rather easy. Try using these steps:

1. Be Clear About the Objectives

Any goal (let alone financial) without a clear objective is nothing more than a pipe dream. And this couldn’t be more true for financial matters.

It is often said that savings is nothing but deferred consumption. Therefore if you are saving today, then you should be crystal clear about what it is for. It could be anything like kid’s education, retirement, marriage, that dream vacation, fancy car etc.

Once the objective is clear, put a monetary value to that objective and the time frame. The important point at this step of goal setting is to list all the objectives, however small they may be, that you foresee in the future and put a value to it.

2. Keep Them Realistic

It’s good to be an optimistic person but being a pollyanna is not desirable. Similarly, while it might be a good thing to keep your financial goals a bit aggressive, going out of the line will definitely hurt your chances of achieving them.

It’s important that you keep your goals realistic in nature for it will help you stay the course and keep you motivated throughout the journey.

3. Account for Inflation

Ronald Reagan once said – “Inflation is as violent as a mugger, as frightening as an armed robber and as deadly as a hitman”. And this quote sums up the best what inflation could do your financial goals.

Therefore account for inflation whenever you are putting a monetary value to a financial objective that is far away in the future.

For example, if one of your financial goal is your son’s college education, which is 15 years hence, then inflation would increase the monetary burden by more than 50% if inflation is mere 3%. So always account for inflation.

4. Short Term vs Long Term

Just like every calorie is not the same, the approach towards achieving every financial goal will not be the same. It is important to bifurcate goals in short term and long term.

As a rule of thumb, any financial goal, which is due in next 3 years should be termed as short term goal. Any longer duration goals are to be classified as long term goals. This bifurcation of goals into short term vs long term will help in choosing the right investment instrument to achieve them.

More on this later when we talk about how to achieve financial goals.

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5. To Each to His Own

The journey of setting financial goals is an individualistic affair i.e. your goals are your own goals and are determined by your want to achieve them. A lot of times we get on the bandwagon of goal setting only to realize later on that it was not meant for us.

It is important that your goals are actually your goals and not inspired by someone else. Take a hard look at this step at all the goals you’ve set for after this step, you will be on the way to achieve them.

By now, you would be ready with your financial goals, now it’s time to go all out and achieve them.

11 Ways to Achieve Your Financial Goals

Whenever we talk about chasing any financial goal, it is usually a 2 step process –

  • Ensuring healthy savings
  • Making smart investments

You will need to save enough; and invest those savings wisely so that they grow over a period of time to help you achieve goals. So let’s get down to ensuring healthy savings.

Ensuring Healthy Savings

Self realization is the best form of realisation and unless you decide what your current financial position is, you aren’t heading anywhere.

This is the focal point from where you start your journey of achieving financial goals.

1. Track Expenses

The first and the foremost thing to be done is to track your monthly expenses. Use any of the expense tracking mobile apps to record your expenses. Once you start doing it diligently, you would be surprised to see how small expenses add up to a sizeable amount.

Also categorize those expenses into different bucket so that you know which bucket is eating the most of your pay check. This record keeping will pave the way for cutting down on un-wanted expenses and pump up your savings rate.

2. Pay Yourself First

Generally, savings come after all the expenses have been taken care of. This is a classical mistake which almost everyone of us do. We pay ourselves last!

Ideally, this should be planned upside down. We should be paying ourselves first and then to the world i.e. we should be taking out the planned saving amount first and then manage all the expenses from the rest.

The best way to actually implement is to put the savings on automatic mode i.e. money flowing automatically into different financial instruments (for example – mutual funds, retirement corpus etc) every month.

Taking the automatic route will make us lose control of our money and hence will compel us to manage in what’s left with us thereby increasing the savings rate.

3. Make a Plan and Vow to Stick with It

Budgeting is the best to get around the uncertainty that financial plans always pose. Decide in advance how spending has to be made.

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Nowadays, several money management apps and wallets can help you do this automatically. It’s easy and who knows, you may just end up doing what people fail to do.

At first, you may not be able to stick to your plans completely but don’t let that become a reason why you stop budgeting entirely.

Make use of technology solutions you like. Explore options and alternatives that let you make use of the available wallet options and choose the one that suits you the most. In time, you will get accustomed to making use of these solutions.

You will find that they make it simpler for you to follow your plan, which would have been difficult otherwise.

4. Rise Again Even If You Fall

Let’s be realistic. It’s not like the world will come to an end if you made one mistake. This isn’t called leniency but discipline.

If you fail to meet your budget for a month, don’t give up the entire effort just like that. Instead, start again.

Remember that flexible plans are the most realistic plans. So go forward and try to follow your financial goals as planned but if for some reason, the plan gets out of hand for you, do not give up on it just yet. This has a lot to do with your psychology rather than any material commitment.

All you have to do is to stay on the road and vow to stay on it, no matter how much you fall down.

5. Make Savings a Habit and Not a Goal

In the book Nudge, authors Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein advocate that in order to achieve any goal, it should be broken down into habits since habits are more intuitive for people to adapt to.

Make Savings a habit rather than a goal. While it might seem to be counter intuitive to many but there are some deft ways of doing it. For example:

Always eat out (if at all) during weekdays rather than weekends. Usually weekends are expensive. Make it a habit and you would in turn be saving a great deal.

If you are travelling buff, try to travel during off season. Your outlay will be much less.

If you go out for shopping, always look out for coupons and see where can you get the best deal.

So the key point is to imbibe the action that results in savings rather than on the savings itself, which is the outcome. Focusing on the outcome will bring out the feeling of sacrifice which will be harder to sustain over a period of time.

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6. Talk About It

Sticking to the saving schedule (to achieve financial goals) is not an easy journey. There will be many distractions from those who are not aligned with your mission. And it would be rather easy to lose the grip over your discipline.

Therefore in order to stay the course, it is advisable that you keep yourself surrounded with people who are also on the same bandwagon. Daily discussions with them will keep you motivated to move forward.

7. Maintain a Journal

For some people, writing helps a great deal in making sure that they achieve what they plan.

So if you are one of them, maintain a proper journal, where you write down your goals and also jot down the extent to which you managed to meet them. This will help you in reviewing how far you have come and which goals you have met.

Use this journal to write down all essential points such as your short term, mid term and long term goals, your current sources of income, your regular expenses which you are aware of and any committed expenses which are of recurring nature.

When you have a written commitment on paper, you are going to feel more energised to follow the plan and stick to it. Moreover, it is going to be a lot more easier for you to follow you and track your progress.

At this point, you should be ready with your financial goals and would be doing brilliantly with savings; now it’s time to talk about the big daddy – Investments.

Making Smart Investments

Savings by themselves don’t take anyone too far. However savings when invested wisely can do wonders and we are at that stage where we will talk about making smart investments.

8. Consult a Financial Advisor

Investments doesn’t come naturally to most of us therefore rather than dabbling with it ourselves, it is wise to consult a financial advisor.

Talk to him/her about your financial goals and savings and then seek advice for the best investment instruments to achieve your goals.

9. Choose Your Investment Instrument Wisely

Though your financial advisor will suggest the best investment instruments, it doesn’t hurt to know a bit about them.

Just like “no one is born a criminal”, no investment instrument is bad or good. It is the application of that instrument that makes all the difference.

Do you remember we talked about bifurcating financial goals in short term and long term?

It is here where that classification will help.

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So as a general rule, for all your short term financial goals, choose an investment instrument that has debt nature for example fixed deposits, debt mutual funds etc. The reason for going for debt instruments is that chances of capital loss is less as compared to equity instruments.

10. Compounding Is the Eighth Wonder

Einstein once remarked about compounding,

Compound Interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it… He who doesn’t… Pays it.

So make friends with this wonder kid. And sooner you become friends with it, quicker you will reach closer to your financial goals.

Start investing early so that time is on your side to help you bear the fruits of compounding.

11. Measure, Measure, Measure

All of us do good when it comes to earning more per month but fail miserably when it comes to measuring the investments; taking stock of how our investments are doing.

If there is one single step where everything (so far) can go wrong, it is at this step – Measuring the Progress.

If we don’t measure the progress timely, then we would be shooting in the dark. We wouldn’t know if our saving rate is appropriate or not; whether financial advisor is doing a decent job; whether we are moving closer to our target or not.

Do measure everything. If you can’t measure it all yourself, ask your financial advisor to do it for you. But do it!

The Bottom Line

This completes the list of tips for you to set financial goals and actually achieve them with not so great difficulty.

As you can see, all it requires is discipline. But guess that’s the most difficult part!

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Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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