You may believe it or not. It is possible to become a minimum wage millionaire.
One day not long ago, I was searching for new topics to write about for Dividends Diversify. While I was searching, I happened to stumble into what I thought was a great finding.
And that finding was The Minimum Wage Millionaire Book written by a gentleman named Bill Edgar.
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The Minimum Wage Millionaire
The Minimum Wage Millionaire is a book about money management for teenagers. That’s right, teenagers.
Now chances are you are not a teenager. But that’s okay.
The Minimum Wage Millionaire is full of great advice. The book’s advice is for anyone that would like to manage their money better. And have more money.
Go ahead. Raise your hand if you would like to have more money.
Why Is It So Hard To Build Wealth?
Mr. Edgar wrote the book because he has had difficulty building wealth. He got off to a bad start as a teenager. And, bad financial habits followed him as a young adult.
Here are a few of his reasons why it was so difficult to build wealth:
- Never had a class in high school that laid out a plan for financial success
- He “sucked at money” management
- Blew all his paper route money on fast food, cokes and arcade games in high school
- Bad spending habits then followed him after college
- Had zero net worth when he and his wife had their first child
- Then lost his job during the great recession
- Cashed out his meager retirement funds to support his family
You will see bad spending habits really hurt Mr. Edgar in his younger years. If you are going to spend, make sure you save as much as you can on every purchase.
My wife and I use Ebates to get cashback on everything we buy online. Even from Amazon.
Sign up for Ebates right here. It’s free and you will get $10 cash back on your first purchase. Plus, discounts on everything you buy.
The Why Behind The Minimum Wage Millionaire
Why did Mr. Edgar write and publish The Minimum Wage Millionaire? He did so thinking it could make a positive impact.
He believed that influencing just one kid would make it worth it. But most importantly, he wrote it for his 3 daughters so they wouldn’t make the same mistakes he did.
I applaud Mr. Edgar’s efforts. And my goal is to review his book in hopes of spreading his word.
If I could make a positive impact on just one kid, it would be worth it to me too. I will also throw in my own story as a teenager at the end. It adds creditability to what Mr. Edgar has to say about life and money.
As Mr. Edgar states:
In life, there are no do-overs.
Related: How to build wealth
Wealth Building Is Difficult As An Adult
He starts by explaining why it’s so hard to build wealth as an adult. Here are a few things he mentions:
- The high cost of college
- College loan payments
- Average starting salaries for college grads of just $45,000
- Parents are no longer paying the bills
- Life will deliver surprises that cost money
- After taxes, loan payments and all expenses there is little left for saving
He is a proponent of higher education. But, the book is for high school graduates too.
High school graduates may not carry college debt. But, they may also have lower lifetime earnings.
Related: The 4 pillars of wealth creation
The Best Time To Go From Nothing To A Millionaire
One of his primary thoughts is this. The time to lay the foundation for becoming a millionaire is during high school while working a minimum wage job.
- Expenses are covered by parents
- Life has few responsibilities or financial surprises
- The time value of money will never be greater
We Make It Difficult To Build Wealth
Finally, Mr. Edgar explains why we are our own worst enemies when it comes to money. Here is why:
- Too impatient
- Parents’ bad spending habits rub off on us
- Don’t understand the time value of money
- Fall in love & love can be expensive
Okay, that’s enough of an introduction. Let’s cover the main points from the book: The Minimum Wage Millionaire by Bill Edgar!
I want you to read on because this is a great little book. But if you haven’t signed up for your free $10 cash from Ebates yet, be sure to do so before you go.
How To Get Rich On Minimum Wage
Here’s the basic formula:
Diversified investing + Small Deposits + Time = Wealth
I like this little formula. It rings so true.
The book is specifically written for a teenage audience. So this topic hammers home the value of having time on your side. The concepts covered include:
- Time value of money
- Rule of 72
- Benefits of a Roth IRA
Investing Wisely To Become A Minimum Wage Millionaire
Key investing topics are covered here. Each of these topics could justify a book or at least a chapter on its own.
But he keeps each topic simple and focused. And, he explains these topics with relatable examples.
What topics are covered?
- Importance of diversification
- Investing in the S&P 500 stock index
- Mutual fund fees
- Dollar-cost averaging
Whether you are a teenager or not, following these concepts can take most investors as far as they need to go.
He even touches on issues with investor psychology. Specifically,
- Believing the past will represent the future
- Being overconfident
- Holding loser investments in hopes of getting even
- Confirmation bias – Looking for information that only supports your views
His point is that investing can be an emotional game.
And all investors, especially teenagers, need to keep their emotions in check when it comes to investing.
From my perspective, if an investor sticks to his key investing concepts, emotions are taken out of the game. Dollar-cost averaging into an S&P 500 index fund is a great way to remove emotions from investing.
What Minimum Wage Millionaires Should Never Do?
Minimum wage millionaires should NEVER, EVER touch their retirement account before age 65.
Cashing out retirement accounts to make ends meet is a big sin. He knows. He did it. And, he is paying for it today.
The Minimum Wage Millionaires Retirement Account Of Choice – Roth IRA
At a high level, a few of the basic rules for a Roth IRA are covered.
- Age limits – none with a parents signature
- Contributions must be from earned income
- Withdrawal rules
- The savers’ tax credit
- No forced withdrawals in retirement
How Millionaires Act
Distilled down to a couple of pages is a great topic. How millionaires behave.
“Most millionaires are normal people with normal jobs who simply know that to get wealthy, they must earn more than they spend.”
Money in – Money out = Total savings
“It is this simple math equation that the average millionaire takes seriously and builds his or her lifestyle around.”
I know when I was a teenager, being a millionaire had to be a whole lot more exciting than that in my mind. But I too now know, it is not.
Other Strategies For Life-Long Success
Mr. Edgar offers some more great tips. He calls them his bonus strategies for retiring rich. They are:
Understand what you can dominate to make a good living. Find out what you are good at. Then, put in the time and effort to be great.
Network. Opportunity is created through the people you know. And the only way to get to know people is through networking.
Love learning. Real learners will join the ranks of real leaders. Real leaders earn real money.
Related: 46 habits of self-made millionaires
Running The Millionaire Numbers
The last chapter discusses a couple of options.
The first option is for a person who chooses to go to work after high school. The other option is for a college graduate.
In either case, he assumes that an individual who has accumulated $41,000 in a Roth IRA invested in an S&P 500 index fund left untouched and with no further contributions will accumulate $1.1 million by age 65.
Here are the numbers and milestones as he presents them:
|Age||Roth IRA Balance – $|
My Personal Story – How I Got Rich On Minimum Wage
I will summarize and wrap up in a moment. But first, I want to add a personal story. Maybe you have read it here before.
I mowed lawns and delivered papers in my early teens.
Mutual funds had not reached the masses yet. There were no S&P 500 index funds at the time. At least not that anyone was talking about.
Jack Bogle, the founder of Vanguard, may have had his money in an S&P 500 index fund. But, he was probably being laughed at and criticized for doing so.
Saving Money Like A Millionaire
So my dad helped me set up a dividend reinvestment plan (DRIP). It was direct with a publicly-traded company at the time.
The company was an electric utility. They provided electricity for our home and region.
He had me dollar cost average my income into the DRIP. I did so for a few years and let the dividends reinvest. And so my journey to save my way to $1 million began.
How To Make Your First Million
I mostly forgot about the DRIP after I turned 16 or 17. I was too busy being stupid.
Not paying too much attention to your investments can be a good idea. It helps keep day to day emotions out of the equation.
Between part-time employment, scholarships and help from my parents, I didn’t have to touch the money in the DRIP to pay for college. Again, I had mostly forgotten about it until I was 21 or 22.
When I turned 22, I remember the account being worth about $15,000. This was the early 1980’s, so $15,000 was worth a little more back then than it is today.
My friends at the time had nothing. They were just in awe that I owned stock.
Investing For A Million Dollars
Again, stock investing through mutual funds was just starting to become popular with the masses. And certainly not the 20 somethings I was hanging out with at the time.
Self-directed investing and 401ks were just in their infancy. The first discount brokerage firms were beginning to gain scale.
Finally, the emotions from bear markets of the late ’70s and early ’80s were becoming a distant memory. A new age of investing was dawning.
Million Dollar Money Management
Anyway, I sold all the stock in the DRIP for cash. I remember my mother being disappointed.
She was letting her emotions about that account dictate her opinion. Fortunately, she didn’t do the investing in the family. My Dad did.
I sold the stock for cash. Not to spend it, but to diversify it into other stocks and mutual funds.
I didn’t want my entire net worth at the time tied up in one stock. I believe diversification was one of the key investing principles Mr. Edgar discussed.
From Nothing To Millionaire?
Since then, the money has been commingled with other earnings and other investments. So, I have no idea what that paper route and lawn mowing money would be worth today.
I’m guessing it is worth a lot more than the few thousand dollars I invested as a teenager. And worth much more than the $15,000 at age 22. It may not be worth a million. But, I’m not 65 yet!
To make a long story short, Mr. Edgar’s teachings in The Minimum Wage Millionaire are real. They are timeless. They are priceless.
What I Liked About The Minimum Wage Millionaire
The book is short and easy to read. It has less than 100 pages in all.
It is full of basic money management information. The information is presented with relatable stories and illustrations to drive home the important points.
The appendix contains a list of resources to take the next steps to execute upon the information presented.
What The Minimum Wage Millionaire Is Not
The book is not a how-to manual.
For example, you won’t find step by step directions on how to apply for and set up a brokerage account. Or how to buy a share of an S&P 500 exchange-traded fund.
Who Could Benefit From Reading The Minimum Wage Millionaire?
Teenagers. The book is written specifically for this audience.
Anyone lost when it comes to money. Whether you are 15, 25 or 45, if you are lost about the basics of money management, the book has value for you.
Parents. Need help teaching your kids about money? Learn the basic concepts yourself. And/or give your teen the gift of knowledge by providing them this book.
Finally, don’t forget to sign up with Ebates to get your $10 cash reward. And savings on everything you purchase. You gotta save every penny you can to become a minimum wage millionaire!
That’s all for today. I hope you enjoyed The Minimum Wage Millionaire book review.
Disclosure & Disclaimer
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