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Wanna Be A Millionaire? Learn From These 12 Kids Who Already Are

Wanna Be A Millionaire? Learn From These 12 Kids Who Already Are

Have you ever known a child who is on their way to being a millionaire before they’re old enough to legally drive a car? We joke about the kids at the neighborhood lemonade stand being “entrepreneurs in the making,” but that may not be as much of a joke as we thought. Kids these days. . .

There are actually a surprising number of millionaires who haven’t even graduated high school yet. We’re not just talking about Richie Rich here. We’re talking self-made millionaires who aren’t even old enough to open a bank account on their own. We’re talking about kids who understand business and how to make money. The mindset starts at a young age.

Without further ado, here are 12 millionaire kids we can learn from:

1. Christian Owens of Mac Bundle Box

Christian made his first million before he was 16 years old. He taught himself web design at a young age and started his first design company at 14. He then went on to negotiate with various manufacturers and distributors to offer a bundle package of applications for Mac OS X (Steve Jobs was his motivator and inspiration). The Mac Bundle Box has since made him millions.

The lesson: Follow your passion, sure, but the main lesson here is about saving people money. Find a way to offer something people already buy for a lower price.

2. Emil Motycka of Motycka Enterprises

Emil start a lawn mowing business at 9 years old. Lawn mowing may seem like a pretty typical business for a kid, but this kid took it to the next level. He took out a loan for $8,000 when he was 13 years old to purchase a commercial lawn mower. He formed Motycka Enterprises by the time he was 18 and went on to make well over $100,000 that summer. He’s now making millions.

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The lesson: Following a strong passion can work, but on the other hand, doing something and doing it well is just as good if not better. As Mike Rowe from Dirty Jobs says “Don’t Follow Your Passion, But Always Bring it With You.” Whatever you do, do it better than everyone else.

3. Evan of EvanTube

Evan started a YouTube channel called EvanTube when he was just 8 years old. Now he is making approximately $1.3 million a year from his channel with over a million subscribers. What are his videos about? Exactly what you might think – reviews of toys and other things that kids his age are interested in. Yes, you can get rich talking about Minecraft, Angry Birds and Legos!

The lesson: If you do what you love and do it well, you can turn it into a million dollar venture. That doesn’t mean it’s easy, but with persistence, you can make it happen.

4. Cameron Johnson of Cheers and Tears

Cameron was earning around $400,000/month in high school. It all started when he created invitation cards for a neighborhood party his parents were having.  When the guests saw the cards, they started asking him to make cards for them and paying him for it. He founded Cheers and Tears at 14 years old, then preceded to go into software development and online advertising, which made him a millionaire by the time he was in high school.

The lesson: If you do something well, you might as well do it big. Dive into new industries and try new things. They just might make you a millionaire.

5. Adam Hildreth of Dubit and Crisp

Adam was a millionaire by his 16th birthday after creating a teenage social networking site called Dubit (popular in the UK). After he had so much success with his social networking site, Adam went on to create Crisp, a company that helps protect kids against online predators. In 2004, he made the UK’s top 20 richest teens list.

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The lesson: Sometimes it’s best to look for a popular trend and do it yourself. It’s also a good idea to find a need and create a solution. Adam did both.

6. Moziah Bridges of Mo’s Bows

Moziah started a bow tie company at 9 years old and quickly grew his business to earning $150,000/year. Today, Moziah has several employees. He has been featured in several popular magazines and even went on Shark Tank. He’s working on a full clothing line at the moment, which I’m sure will end up being an impressive success as well.

The lesson: If you decide to start a business, keep growing and expanding. There is always room to make your business bigger, just be sure to have a great team to help you along the way.

7. Geoff, Dave, & Catherine Cook of My Yearbook

Before everyone was on Facebook, these three siblings started My Yearbook, a social media site based on the school(s) you went to. It was similar to Facebook at the time, but with more focus on grade school rather than college. The idea to start the website began when they moved to a new town and wanted to make some friends. The site took off and six years later. The Cooks ended up selling the site to the Quepasa Corps. for $100 million. Not bad at all.

The lesson: Find a need and fill it. Be proactive. These kids could have let themselves get down about not having friends in a new place, but instead they decided to do something about it.

8. Sanjay & Shavran Kumaran of GoDimensions

Sanjay and Shavran, at 12 and 14 years old, respectively, run their own gaming corporation. They have several apps, with over 35,000 downloads between them. They have developed the popular Catch Me Cop app, among others. Their apps are monetized purely through advertising, which makes them free for kids to download. Now they speak at events and conferences on ideas, making them happen and drawing up business plans.

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The lesson: This one actually merges following your passion with doing what you do really well. It’s the best of both worlds.

9. Farrhad Acidwalla of Rockstah Media

Farrhad founded Rockstah Media, a marketing agency with 20 employees around the world and he did it at 16 years old. You may have heard of his company or you may know Farrhad from one of his TED Talks. He is known today as one of the most promising entrepreneurs of our time. When asked about the success of his company, Farrhad said “My team is the backbone of my company,” which can definitely teach us a thing or two.

The lesson: You can’t do it all on your own. Building a strong professional team is important if you really want to take you business to the next level.

10. Robert Nay of the Bubble Ball App

Robert raked in over $2 million in two weeks, following the release of his famous Bubble Ball game. He was only 14 years old at the time. Today, his game has been downloaded over 16 million times and Robert continues to develop new apps with his company, Nay Games. Bubble Ball has been seen on Good Morning America and continues to be one of the most popular games in the Apple Store.

The lesson: Some people really can achieve overnight success. That shouldn’t be your goal, but if you create something good enough, it could happen for you.

11. Nick D’Aloisio of Summly

Nick sold his company, Summly, to Yahoo for $30 million in 2013, making him one of the youngest self-made millionaires in the world. Summly went on to become Yahoo News Digest. Nick now works for Yahoo and has been named “Innovator of the Year” by the Wall Street Journal. He was included in TIME Magazine’s “Time 100” as one of the world’s most influential teenagers. Nick is also the youngest person to receive a round of venture capital in technology from Hong Kong billionaire, Li Ka-Shing.

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The lesson: Age doesn’t have to hold you back. Nick was even able to receive funding from a billionaire, despite his age.

12. Leanna Archer of Leanna’s Hair

Leanna was bottling and selling her own hair pomade at just 9 years old. She got her secret recipes from her great-grandmother and has since expanded to an entire line of hair products based on the same recipes. Leanna’s company brings in over $100,000 annually and her net worth is over $3 million. She has also founded the Leanna Archer Education Foundation. Her foundation helps provide basic needs, including education, to 200 Haitian kids each day.

The lesson: When you find success and make lots of money, be sure to give back. Money is a great tool for many things and it is a necessity to help others who have little to nothing.

These kids show us that age is not a limitation. You’re never too young or too old. If you really want to make a difference in the world, start now, no matter your age or any other limiting factor. The commonality among all of these kids is their mindset.They didn’t start with a mindset of “can’t”, they started with a mindset of “how can I?” You can do the same. Even if you’re still in high school.

Featured photo credit: Moziah Bridges/Memphis CVB via flickr.com

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Kalen Bruce

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Last Updated on March 3, 2021

Top 6 Hacks on How To Build Credit Fast

Top 6 Hacks on How To Build Credit Fast

When done right, credit can open doors and provide a lifestyle that you never imagined possible. Anything from flying around the world in first-class and staying at 5-star hotels entirely for free to starting and scaling businesses. It’s also an area where it can be easy to make mistakes and hard to recover from without the right information. In this article, I will break down how you can build credit fast so you can open doors in your life!

When you start to think about improving your credit score, you have to answer three important questions first:

  1. What are you trying to achieve by having good credit?
  2. What really is your credit score?
  3. How is your credit score calculated?

What Are Your Credit Goals?

Having a high credit score is great, but ultimately, your credit score is a tool in your personal finance arsenal that you can use to open doors. The first question you should ask yourself is “what will a higher credit score do for me?”

I work with many clients directly at Freedom Travel Systems to help them fully leverage the power of their credit so they can enjoy free luxury travel and start or grow their business. For my clients and many others, here are a few common goals many credit-savvy individuals have:

  • Free Travel – getting access to travel rewards cards so you can get tons of free travel and even get first-class flights, hotel suites, and luxury amenities all for free
  • Start/Grow a Business – getting access to business credit so you can start and grow a business with 0% or low-interest financing that does not impact your personal credit
  • More Approvals – getting approved for credit cards, auto loans, or mortgages so you improve your lifestyle or build your personal wealth
  • Better Rates – getting better interest rates on any loans you get will save you tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars over your lifetime

What Is Your Credit Score?

Your credit score is simply a 3-digit number that tells potential lenders how reliable of a borrower you are. Keep in mind that lenders, such as banks and credit issuers, stay in business by lending. Their goal is to find the people that have the highest probability of paying them back and they assess this primarily through your credit score.

What’s important to know is that there are two major scoring models used to create your scores. These scores are your FICO Score and your Vantage Score. More than 90% of lenders rely on your FICO score, so when you are checking your score, you want to make sure you see the actual score that the lenders use. And no, checking your own score does not hurt your credit!

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Then enters the 3 main credit bureaus, which are essentially agencies that collect credit information on you. These are Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. These bureaus then apply a scoring model to the information they have on you and voila, you now have a credit score! Bureaus sometimes have different information on your report, which is why you will see 3 different scores.

How Is Your Credit Score Calculated?

Next, you need to understand how the credit score is calculated. This will provide a high-level overview, but there is more detail to each of these factors alone.

There are 5 main factors in the calculation of your credit score:[1]

  1. Payment History (35%) – This refers to the amount and percentage of on-time payments you have.
  2. Utilization (30%) – This is how much revolving credit you use as a percentage of the total revolving credit issued to you. Note that installment loans like auto-loans or mortgages do not count towards this while credit cards do.
  3. Age of Credit (15%) – This refers to how long your credit history is, primarily your “average age.”
  4. Credit Mix (10%) – This is how many different types of credit you have. For example, there are credit cards, student loans, auto loans, mortgages, personal loans, and lines of credit.
  5. New Credit (10%) – This primarily refers to how many inquiries you have for new credit.

Top 6 Hacks on How to Build Credit Fast

Now that you’ve learned more about your credit score, here are the top 6 tips on how to build credit fast.

1. Don’t Close Your Cards

Many of us are taught that getting a new credit card is bad and having too many will hurt your score. In fact, the opposite is true. You want to have many positive accounts reporting to your credit report. Logically, this makes sense because having more accounts with more on-time payments shows that you are a more reliable borrower. You just don’t want to open too many accounts too quickly since that can hurt your “new credit” factor.

Instead of closing a card, what you should do is simply keep the card open and put a small subscription service on it monthly. Why? Because each time you have an on-time payment, it helps build your payment history, the largest factor of credit.

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If you close a card, you are missing on potential on-time payments, age of credit, credit mix, and also lowering the total credit lent to you so your utilization percentage may go up. If you have an annual fee on a card you don’t like, see if there is a “no-fee” version of the card and downgrade it to that card rather than close it.

2. Use Autopay to Never Miss a Payment

This one is easy to do and easy not to do. Go into your credit card account and set up auto-pay. You can choose to either pay the full amount, the statement balance, or the minimum payment. Personally, I like to set up autopay to pay the minimum payment so that I never get a late payment. Then, I go in and manually pay the statement balance each month by the payment due date.

This helps me personally see my spending and have a manual review of my charges while ensuring, not have to pay interest, and still get the benefit of making sure that I never miss a payment if something goes wrong. Think about it, if you were to have a medical or family emergency, the last thing you want to experience on the back end of that is a late payment and a drop in your credit score. So, set up autopay.

A pro tip is to update your payment due dates across all bills and accounts to be the same so that you can “time batch” the process and have one time a month where you sit down and handle your payments. You can do this by simply contacting the credit card company or doing it online.

3. Get a Credit Limit Increase to Lower Your Utilization

One of the factors that get most people into trouble is using too much of their allotted total credit. Their utilization, which is the percentage of revolving credit they use, goes up, and their score tanks. You should aim for less than 30%, and in an ideal world, less than 10%.

To help drive this down, call your credit issuer and ask for a credit limit increase. This will help increase the total amount of credit extended to you and drop your utilization. Oftentimes, they will only give it to you when your utilization is fairly decent (less than 50%), so work to pay it down as best as possible before doing this. You should ask if the credit limit increase will give you an inquiry as some banks do a hard inquiry while some do not. If they do a hard inquiry, it is often better to just get a new card altogether or pass.

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4. Add Authorized Users to Increase Your Age, Add History, and Decrease Utilization

This is one of the best hacks out there as it helps with the 3 biggest factors of improving your credit: payment history, utilization, and age. This concept is also called “credit piggybacking” where someone with great credit history on a card adds an authorized user (AU) to the card. When the AU gets added, the credit history and information from that card are added to the AU’s report!

This is extremely helpful for people with young credit because it can drastically increase your age of accounts. It can also help many people with limited payment history or high utilization.

Please be aware that anything good or bad on that account you are added to will show up on your report. So, you want to avoid any cards with negative marks or high utilization. That being said, it is a one-way street, so nothing that you do with your credit can impact the primary account holder.

This is so valuable that there are companies that sell AU accounts. I always suggest starting with your family and/or personal network first as there are likely people in your network that can help!

5. Space Out Your Application Strategy

New credit is the smallest factor of credit, but it still matters! If you are looking to build up your credit, you should space out your applications. If you apply for too much credit in a short period, it looks very needy in the eyes of the lenders. For this reason, it is safest to apply for cards slowly over time unless you have really studied more in-depth how this works. A good rule of thumb is once every few months.

If you are in the credit game for the hopes of getting tons of credit card points for free travel, which is what I personally take full advantage of, you will want to familiarize yourself with the different bank rules and card promotions to put together the right application strategy. Applying blindly will waste inquiries and leave tons of benefits on the table!

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6. Review Your Report for Negatives

If you have any negative or “derogatory” marks on your credit report, this will hurt you drastically. They do impact you less as they age, however, you should review your credit report to ensure that everything on your report is 100% accurate and actually yours. Wrong information ends up on credit reports all the time and you will want to take personal responsibility for making sure it is accurate.

The “burden of proof” is on the credit bureau to confirm that any information on your report is in fact accurate. If you find inaccuracies, you can dispute that with them, or you could consider getting a credible credit repair company to help you.

Final Thoughts

There you have it, the top 6 tips on how to build credit fast so you can get closer to reaching your goals. Now that you’ve learned more about how credit score works and how you can improve yours, you’ll hopefully be able to make better financial decisions and achieve your financial goals quicker.

More Tips on How to Build Credit Fast

Featured photo credit: CardMapr via unsplash.com

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