Aren’t we all looking for the simple path to wealth? Well… This book has changed my life. Let me say this again because I am not just writing these words to sensationalize this post but this book has changed my life and more so my thinking. In fact, I am going to open up a Vanguard account and put $50,000.00 into VTSAX, add to it monthly and show you all what happens. WHAT THE F Jai! Ok. I am getting ahead of myself. Please allow me to explain. If you have been reading my blog over the years I have been trading stocks most of my adult life and since 2014 I have tried to join the ranks as a day trader. Sadly I have failed.
Wait what? You failed but I thought you were profitable.
Yes I am but not to the point where I can buy a 30 foot yacht cruising the 7 seas. I make NYC coffee money and use photography and blogging to round out my financial income.
For me I have found that day trading is boring, lonely and down right depressing. Just imagine how I feel when I ‘m losing money. It’s also expensive, time consuming and 20 other (not so nice) things I can say about it.
Ok so how in God’s name has the book changed your life Jai and $50,000.00 WHAT?
Ok here it comes.
Late last year I was looking to add much more consistent and valuable content to my blog. Over a thousand people have asked me for help throughout the last couple of years and so I was looking for some extra reading material from Mr. Money Mustache to inspire me. Then I stumbled upon J L Collins on Amazon because MMM wrote the forward of his book. So, I dug a little deeper. 250 plus 5 star reviews plus MMM wrote the forward. CLICK… BOUGHT… DONE!
The day I got my fresh copy in the mail I immediately ran to… no wait… I placed it on my desk and for days JL and the Simple Path to Wealth stared at me. Then a couple of weeks later I heard my lovely wife say,
“JAI… DO THE DISHES!”
That’s when I grabbed the book and read it cover to cover. In fact I read it 2 times, spent days on his website and then read it again. It was like an epiphany. It all finally made sense for me. Since I started the millionaire challenge (which ended for me in 2015) until just last night I have been asked my opinion and, even though I never tell people what to do I have given my honest opinion as it was when I was writing it.
This blog is my journey… however, I now realize that I was on the wrong path and THAT is why I said I failed. JL Collins’ “The Simple Path to Wealth” helped me realize that.
And now here is my review plus what I am doing with my $50,000.00.
Who is JL Collins?
JL Collins is a book author and financial blogger on jlcollinsnh.com who found the impulse to write a blog/book to help inspire his daughter on what to do with her money.
He was also a
“Busboy, dishwasher, order-puller, grocery bagger, stock clerk, produce clerk and gas station pump jockey back in the day when someone pumped your gas, washed your windows and checked your oil (ask your grandparents).
Mail clerk, tree-trimmer, landscaper, ad agency founder, account executive, ad space salesman, investment officer, entrepreneur, consultant, sales trainer, speaker, writer, radio talk show host and magazine publisher. Pretty much in that order although I’ve done some more than once. And I may have forgotten one or two.”
The Essence of The Simple Path to Wealth
JL Collins’ book is pretty much his website put into 286 pages of simple, clear and concise wording. The essence doesn’t simply deal with the mechanics and technicalities of investing. Instead, JL finds a creative almost Uncle like way to address the true culprit of our investment failure: personal behavior.
Honestly, there is really nothing new about the crux of what he is saying but it’s how he is saying it that is different.
“Spend less than you earn – invest the surplus – avoid debt”
Now we have all heard that time and time again. Think of dieting. Anybody can tell you that eating less and working out more will help you lose weight but it never clicks. Then a program like P90X, Insanity or a number of other Beachbody workouts come out and flips you upside down. JL Collins is exactly that for me.
If I may be so bold he is the Shawn T of finance but older, shorter, heavier, and much much much whiter.
JL Collins is suggesting that, depending on where you are in the wealth building process, you put all of your investable money in the low expense Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund VTSAX. And keep adding. The Fund is designed to provide investors with exposure to the entire U.S. equity market, including small-, mid-, and large-cap growth and value stocks.
He further suggests that if the market goes down hard look at it like a gift to buy more at a lower price. As you get closer to retirement you can add in a bit of the Vanguard Total Bond Market Index Fund VBMFX.
He addresses many other topics as well. Below are just a few of them.
- How to think about money.
- The simple way to retire a millionaire.
- His hardball thoughts on financial advisors.
- The costly expense ratio of other funds.
- How to take advantage of your retirement and taxes.
- How to live on only 4% of your money.
Is he making any guaranties? Of course not but the reality is that over the last 3 years the majority of the people who have asked my advice had less than $5000 to their name. Becoming a day trader can be costly. In fact, aside from losses, you will need (bare minimum) $20,000.00 to start.
Not true Jai. (_____) and (_____) used $1500 and made millions in the stock market. In fact I can name 1000 people.
Good point but out of the 7.4 Billion people in the world today you have a 99.99999864864864% chance of doing the same.
Look I am not giving up on trading and I am not saying don’t try to swing or day trade. That just isn’t true and not what this is about. What I am saying though is if you only have $5000 to your name you might want to seriously look into other avenues on where to put your money. Why? Because there is one thing for sure from the chart below… even when the market goes down hard it always finds a way to go back up harder.
If you are interested in reading the Simple Path to Wealth please click the link below. It is an affiliate link and helps support this site. Prices are the same for you and Beyond Debt receives a small commission.
Click here for The Simple Path to Wealth.
Oh wait… What am I doing with that $50,000 I talked about above? Click here to read about it.