Posted On 18 Dec 2011
Should you increase your assets?
Also, if having more money is one of your goals, what’s a simple plan to do it?
It’s important to begin by clarifying the words. Consider a concrete example.
Suppose you want a house to live in. You find one for sale that you like and the seller accepts your purchase offer. You find a bank willing to loan you the money, put some money down on it, sign the mortgage papers at closing, and move into the house.
Is that house an asset?
No it is not!
If you want to increase your assets, you must follow Rule One.
“You must know the difference between an asset and a liability, and buy assets. If you want to be rich, this is all you need to know. It’s Rule No. 1. It is the only rule” (Robert T. Kiyosaki & Sharon L. Lechter, Rich Dad Poor Dad. I also found their The Cashflow Quadrant very helpful.).
An asset increases the money you have, whereas a liability decreases the money you have.
Your house is the bank’s asset. Month after month you pay the bank, right?
Month after month you pay the principle and interest on the loan as well as for taxes, insurance, and maintenance on the house. The house takes money from you; it doesn’t give you any money.
Eventually, if you pay off the loan and sell the house, it may become an asset.
Even though it’s a liability for many years, that does not mean that you should not buy it. The point here is only to help you clarify your thinking. Having a place to live is likely a liability, but, unless you want to be homeless, it’s a liability worth incurring.
Suppose you own a house for 25 years. Suppose its price goes up. Did it appreciate in value? Perhaps, perhaps not. Often the price of real estate does go up. Is that because the house is worth more?
Not unless you have increased its value by, for example, adding an addition onto it or building a garage. Its value as a place to live remains the same.
Why, then, did its price increase? It’s probably only because the value of currency decreased! If it takes more dollars to buy it now than 25 years ago, that may only be because dollars are worth less. Even though its price (in currency) is higher, it may be that its monetary value has only stayed the same or even decreased.
So, it’s important to distinguish price from monetary value (see the post “Currency Collapse“). It’s important to think in terms of monetary value rather than currency.
There’s a big difference between increasing the dollars you have and increasing your money. “Should you increase your assets?” really means here “Should you increase how much money you have?”
Answer: I don’t know. You may think that financial wealth is very important or not important at all.
You may want to increase your assets if you think doing so is relatively important compared to your other values.
I do not think, and I think most people would agree with me, that it is ultimately important whether or not you increase your assets.
Although most people think it’s important to be at least financially comfortable, nearly every adult understands that even being financially wealthy is insufficient for happiness and well-being.
For example, air is more important that wealth. So is having enough clean water to drink and nutritious food to eat. Being healthy is important. Having some good interpersonal relationships is important to most people. Perhaps nothing is more important that spiritual awakening.
Let’s suppose that you do want to increase your assets to be more financially comfortable — whatever exactly “financially comfortable” means to you. You want to be less financially needy.
A simple, effective plan for doing so begins with assuming full responsibility for whether or not you increase your assets. After that, it has a lot to do with continuous learning.
Learn about yourself. What are your talents and abilities? What talents and abilities could you have if you worked hard to develop? List them as list “A.”
Learn about others. People want lots of different kinds of goods and services. List them as list “B.” Because the world turns, keep noticing what others want, too.
Then compare the two lists. Which item that is already in high demand from list B matches one of your best skills from A? Which item from B would you really enjoy supplying? Pick an item from B that you might be able to supply better than it’s being supplied now.
Remember: there’s always room at the top. Commit yourself to becoming among the best in your chosen field. Do whatever it takes to become excellent at it.
Don’t worry: you do have some ability or other that can be very useful to others. It may need more development, but anyone who regularly reads this blog or similar material is certain to have what it takes. It may take more education and practice, but rest assured that you have the ability.
Often, reading in your chosen field or practicing a specific skill for just one hour daily can move you to near the top in expertise in as short as two years.
Once you are confident that you are more valuable to others in that way, market yourself. Let others know how you can help them solve their problem.
Finally, when they invite you to help, serve them well and reap the rewards.
That plan works. It’s based on a very simple idea: others will increase your assets for you after you help them live better. Give value to receive value.
For example, although I’m not a medical doctor, perhaps because my father was an internist, I’ve always been interested in physical well-being. I enjoy writing and reading. I have excellent critical thinking skills. That’s a short A list.
We’re in the midst of an obesity epidemic. People need help attaining natural, lasting weight loss and many realize it. Most people are confused about exactly what to do to achieve and maintain a healthful percentage of body fat. That’s a short B list.
With the help of my best friend, we created a free authority website that is packed with useful information about losing body fat and keeping it off. It attracts thousands of unique visitors daily. We share a four figure monthly income from it by permitting advertisers to advertise on our site.
Notice that we built the site with no guarantee of success. We risked failing. If you insist on an up-front guarantee, you will never increase your assets. That’s not the way it works.
If you have the right attitude, failure is nothing but feedback. Don’t take it personally.
You, too, can do something similar to get currency flowing in that you can use to increase your assets. You may be able to purchase assets directly (by, for example, buying an apartment building) or you may be able to free your time to create them yourself (by, for example, taking a year or two off to write a bestselling book).
There are lots of ways you can work from home at a part-time business to increase your assets.
Once you have currency flowing in, what should you do with it? Coming up with a simple plan for answering that question is at least as difficult as coming up with a simple plan for how to increase your assets in the first place!
All currency in the world today is nothing but fiat currency. Saving it is foolish. It won’t only get eaten up by inflation, but a currency collapse would destroy it all. Use that currency, directly or indirectly, to acquire assets.
I discuss that in other posts (for example, “Gold“).
It’s a good problem to have.
As always, if you think it may be useful to them, I encourage you to share this post with others. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.