View Yourself as a Business to Save Money

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Without an underlying purpose, there’s hardly a reason to save money.

I mean, the thought of saving for retirement is an extremely demotivating thought when you’re looking at a 40 year long career.

Investing is a complex topic that most people are not interested in.

There’s also a lack of financial education being taught about the subject in general.

More often than not, saving is used to describe putting money into an easy-to-access account. This low interest paying account eventually becomes an extra spending account. I’ve got one of these accounts too.

But that’s not how successful savings strategies work.

Saving is a habit that’s built up over time.

In order to become successful with saving money, you need to view yourself as a business.

By taking a business-like approach to managing your cashflow, it becomes easier to stay motivated.

This perspective allows you to view saving as acquiring assets for your personal business!

The goal is not to save money. The goal is to ACQUIRE ASSETS!

The most difficult part of investing is knowing what to invest in.

From my perspective, less confusion would increase motivation to save money.

All the complicated retirement account names and pension plans make it difficult for the layman to understand.

In reality, investing is very simple and could be understood by everyone.

In short, the goal of saving money is to purchase income producing assets.

It’s a concept based on Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki.

With that said, how does one know what asset to invest in?

Saving money is like adding product lines to your personal brand.

The more you know yourself, the more you understand your brand.

This is where the choice to invest passively or actively is made.

If you’re skilled with your hands, you may lean towards real estate investing.

If you enjoy reading annual company reports, you choose equity investing.

On the other hand, if your vision is to have a hands off approach, you lean towards index investing.

It’s extremely important to understand your personal brand and goals to stay motivated to save money.

Once you understand the brand behind your business, you can specialize in assets that compliment your personal interests, strengths and abilities.


A few Product Lines to consider acquiring

Stocks

As a dividend investor, stocks are my preferred asset.

For a low initial cost, I can build a cash flow machine from the comfort of my MacBook.

On the other hand, selecting individual stocks is not ideal for everyone.

Real Estate and Rental Properties

Rental properties are something that I don’t have any experience with.

However, if you don’t share an interest in stocks, real estate is a tangible asset, which makes it easy to save for.

For a lot of people, it’s easier to stay motivated to save towards a tangible object such as a house.

Index Funds

Frankly, the majority of investors should invest their entire portfolios into index funds—myself included.

I still prefer dividend investing , though. It allows me to predict annual income better, and it allows me to select stocks that offer high dividend growth rates.

But I will use index investing to diversify, and it’s obviously the best way to passively invest.

A Business

Owning a personal business can be a very fulfilling and rewarding asset.

Since it’s a personal business, there’s potential for a substantial financial reward.

Believing in your own product and the potential for a high financial reward makes it motivating to invest in your own business.

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How much money should you save?

In my personal opinion, at least 10% of your net income should get saved. At least!

Otherwise, you’re almost working for nothing and not actually further ahead after doing the work.

If you’re interested in reaching early FI, you must be saving at least 20% of your net income.

But taking a business-like approach to saving allows you to base it around the progress of your brand.

In short, you can set your savings rate at a very comfortable level of 5 to 10% in the early stages.

Once you reach your goal, you can increase the rate in small increments.

This process can be repeated until you reach your desired target.

save money

Conclusion

To close, there are many important benefits to be gained by taking a business minded approach to saving money:

  • Acquire income producing assets approach
  • Consistency
  • Accountability to increase income for shareholders (yourself)

Although this approach to saving is most suitable for income investors, the key is to specialize on assets within your core competencies. 

The assets you acquire should fit your personal brand, and they should be based on your personal interests and strengths.

In addition, focus on building a specific purpose for your savings.

Once you have a business like approach with a specific purpose, you become driven to save money.

In turn, you will gain a better understanding of how to value money.

The more important the success of your business becomes, the more you’re forced to weigh the impact of your spending.

Questions for the readers: Do you take a business minded approach towards saving? What savings strategies work for you?

10 Comment

  1. Jay says: Reply

    Insightful post Graham, thanks for sharing! I think this is a smart approach to saving money and building your wealth. I think one of the key points you highlighted as well is to save and invest in assets that fit your personal strength/brand. The cool thing about stocks is through REITs you can also get real estate exposure (even for non-handy guys like me and you!) Thanks again for sharing.
    Jay recently posted…Find The Best Stocks to Buy Right Now (Free Stock Screen!)My Profile

    1. Hi Jay,
      Thanks for reading and commenting! I’m glad you were able to find some value out of it.

      I also agree with you 100% about personal strengths and brand being important factor. Technically everyone should invest in index funds, but if you don’t have an interest in them, you’re likely to sell during market corrections. And you’ll likely lose the motivation to save. On the other hand, if your follow your personal strengths, it will be easier to stick to the long term game. I think it’s better to save and get a lower rate of return as opposed to not saving at all.

      I’m a big fan of REITS too! That’s currently how I’m adding to the real estate portion of my portfolio. Thanks again for stopping by. Take care! 🙂

  2. I totally agree. The more assets you can acquire now, the better off you will be in the long run. Real estate isn’t my thing either. Outside of home ownership if you want to count that. REITs are a different matter though. I’ll gladly collect those dividends while somebody worries about the headaches. I like how you mention accountability. That’s one great thing about blogging. It will definitely hold you accountable. Take care friend!

    1. Hi Mr Defined Sight,

      Thanks for commenting! Your second line sums it up exactly! It’s about acquiring as many assets as possible. I’m a fan of REITS too! And I share the same philosophy in terms of wanting to avoid rental headaches. Accountability is something that is very important. It’s something that I’m focusing on more lately. Through looking in the mirror, it has made me realize that I could put in a lot more effort in a lot of areas of my life. Blogging certainly helps with accountability and is helping me improve. Thanks again. Hope you’re having a great week!

  3. My motto towards saving is JUST DO IT!

    Of course everything saved above and beyond my emergency fund gets invested in some way.

    I would really like to get a few real estate properties, but haven’t come across any that the numbers worked out on. The next crash though…
    MrDoublingDollars recently posted…What’s The Most Cheapskate Thing You’ve Ever Done?My Profile

    1. Hey Mr Doubling Dollars,

      I appreciate the comment! Your motto works too! I try to invest everything beyond my emergency fund and spending as well.

      I’ve considered the idea of a rental property but have chosen to avoid it. I believe that focussing on a few things at a time will bring better results. I’ll focus on blogging and the dividend investing for now. On the other hand, if renting out half of a house helps me reach FI sooner, I’ll probably do it. Good point as well about waiting for better prices. I hope you find what you’re looking for! It would be interesting to read about on your blog. Take care!

  4. That is a smart approach to it. Buy income generating assets and diversify your income stream. Sometimes more income can outweigh cutting costs, even though that helps too. Think like a business and try to remain profitable while continuously growing as well.
    Dividend Daze recently posted…New Additions/ Updates Made To The SiteMy Profile

    1. Hi Dividend Daze,

      I like how you mentioned that income can sometimes outweigh costs. That’s a business-like way of thinking. While a lot of people focus on paying off debt before starting to save and invest, I believe it’s ok to carry debt as long you’re taking a business approach. Often, people that pay off debt tend to celebrate by adding another payment. However, focussing on saving builds a habit that will never stop. Thanks for reading and commenting! Have a great week!

  5. Derek Syme says: Reply

    Great post! The business approach is a good one. Some things I’ve done in last couple months to help free up some saving money is call my internet and phone provider separately to tell them I’m switching to someone else. This scared them into offering the same services for half the price. I’ve saved over $100 a month doing this. I’ve also asked for a raise at work by negotiating rather than just accepting the automatic annual raise.

    1. Hey man! Appreciate the comment and glad you enjoyed the post! That’s awesome that you were able to free up some extra cash flow. Cutting back is an area I could stand to improve at, especially when it comes to data. I’m happy for you to hear about your raise! Well deserved man! Save some of it and enjoy the rest! I’m sure I’ll see you for Dan’s birthday soon. Congrats again on the raise!

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