Being BROKE is NEVER an excuse to not invest. MANY wealthy people built their empires and made their wealth starting from literally ZERO. YES this strategy STILL works today.
The question is, how WOULD someone achieve that with the tools we have available to us all?
HOW TO GET STARTED TODAY USING UNEXPECTED STRATEGIES FOR ACHIEVING INFINITE RETURNS IN YOUR INVESTING JOURNEY, AND STARTING WITH ZERO DOLLARS.
Invest in your employer-sponsored 401(k).
If you work for a company that offers you a 401(k) retirement account, you must take advantage of the opportunity. If you don’t, you are letting free money go down the drain every day. Here’s how an employer 401(k) works:
1. Your employer offers you the chance to enroll. Sometimes you need to wait a bit after joining the company, but there may be no waiting period these days. So ENROLL.
2. You divert a percentage of your gross income into the account using pre-tax dollars. What that means is that you have already made money. That’s right. Usually, if you earn $1000, you get to take home less than that because you pay taxes. But, on the other hand, if you send the $1,000 to your 401(k), you won’t pay taxes, so you just earned a return of somewhere between ten and thirty percent, depending on your tax rate. Genius!
3. The company matches part of your contribution. You are making money again! Let’s take that $1,000. If your company matches your contributions at fifty percent, they will add $500 to your $1,000 (again, with no taxes coming out). So in this example, you are SAVING 10-30% in taxes initially, and THEN making an instant 50% return with the company matching your investment. This is before you’re even making anything in the market. So if you invest in something like the stock market, or the Saint income fund which both averages around 8% returns, then potentially in this example, you could be making almost 90% on your invested dollars. This is INSANE when you see all the benefits. Even MORE, if you look into some real estate fund options that pay higher like the 15-18& return range, you could start to approach 100% returns, which is doubling your initial investment dollars EVERY SINGLE YEAR. This is a massive opportunity for you to grow massive wealth. Keep up 100% returns and you’ll have a huge amount of 401k funds quickly.
5. Leverage your nest egg for real estate investing. With some 401(k) plans, you can borrow or even withdraw some money to use as an investment into real estate, or buy a property on your own. As you know, I’m the BIGGEST fan of real estate because of the different benefits it offers including cash flow, appreciation, and tax benefits. It’s hard to find all three in an investment, so this is why I’m ALWAYS saying it’s the highest-level investment strategy. The goal here is to invest more into properties and funds so that you’re replacing your monthly income with cashflow, and low-term asset ownership benefits.
Overall the 401K strategy is a HUGE benefit early on in your investing career if you take advantage of it and strategize into the future.
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Invest borrowed money.
Borrowing money to invest is inherently a MUCH more risky investment strategy. But it is important to understand this avenue here because borrowing and raising money is one of the highest levels of investment leverage. If it goes well, it can be a fantastic option. If it goes poorly, you lose people’s money, or your investment flops and you still have a loan on your back, this can be a HUGE problem for years to come. But let’s talk about borrowing money to invest with the understanding that this should only be done in extremely conservative circumstances where the assets you’re investing in are very very very secure and consistent.
One option is Using borrowed money as a down payment on real estate. In this strategy, You essentially repay the loan with the income if you buy an investment property. This is the standard issue real estate investment model. But what about the downpayment? What do you do about that? Option 1 is what we already mentioned, aka raising and borrowing money from family and friends. But that can be dicey and can carry the added burden of splitting the profits on the back end of the deal.
So here’s another option: use assets you have to get a loan and reinvest that money. suppose you already have a home you bought a few years ago that you live in currently. If the value has increased, you may be able to borrow part of the increase (called equity) to use as a down payment on that second property that you want to buy as an investment.
A third option is to Consider joining forces with partners to buy that property you can’t afford on your own, or investing with others that are ALREADY finding a ton of success in their real estate investing. This eliminates the downpayment issues and gives you a little more certainty. Buying a portion of a higher-priced investment may be wiser than buying all of a lesser asset. You can also bring an outside capital partner as a joint venture on the deal you’re looking at, assuming it’s a good opportunity. The good news is that either way, you’re going to learn something. If it’s a bad deal, you’ll hear that from the potential partner, and if it’s a good deal, you’ll learn why and how to manage it.
This is essentially what Saint does today. I got my start working for high net-worth real estate investors FOR FREE and learned the ropes from there. While it was many years of eating protein shakes and chipotle because I couldn’t afford anything else, I was RELENTLESS in presenting deals to investors and getting feedback. This allowed me to get a TON of “nos” very quickly until something crazy happened… I got a yes. And that deal was an amazing success. Since then we’ve done deal after deal, building our team, our investments, and our investors. And part of the process that I went through was also INVESTING WITH OTHER PEOPLE. That’s right. Even though we invest full-time at Saint, I’m still a HUGE investor in many other people’s funds. It allows me to diversify significantly, and also make sure I’m ALWAYS seeing what other people are doing and taking the best practices that we can then incorporate into Saint’s processes to improve even more.
The Ultimate: Investing with Money made from investing.
Investing Correctly is an INFINITE returns game. Guys, that is the POINT of investing. Is getting to a point where your returns on investing continue to earn returns on those initial returns. This virtuous snowball is what takes a smart person from being financially savvy and conservative, to be extremely financially FREE. The famous saying attributed to Einstein is that “compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world”. This infinite return strategy is that concept of money working FOR you, rather than working against you, like when someone doesn’t pay their credit card and the debt piles up rapidly. The big picture is to use money as a tool of LEVERAGE. Where you are achieving an upward spiral of progress, and you are achieving disproportionately MORE returns on your money than the efforts you’re putting into any single investment on an ongoing basis.
So how do you do this infinite returns investing strategy in your own investing? There are 3 main ways focused on AUTOMATIC REINVESTMENT (which is the act of automatically reinvesting your earnings so that your earnings are adding to the principal, which then increases the cashflow, which then you can continue to reinvest):
Stocks: For stocks, the strategy Simply put, is reinvesting your dividends. Many equities throw off dividends at regular intervals. So if you set your stock portfolio to automatically reinvest, then you’re not losing a second when the dividends are distributed to investors. This cuts down on the days it would take to receive the funds, and reinvest them yourself. So it’s another example of technology boosting returns through instant efficiency. Also worth noting, this strategy takes close to ZERO time, so it’s a benefit when looking at the amount of time it takes to setup as well.
Income investments: You can ALSO do this with many fixed-income investment options. Many income funds will let you boost your ongoing return if you set up automatic reinvestment. We do this for the Saint Income fund, and I know many others do as well.
Real Estate: The last category and also my favorite.. In the fund model, you should receive your principal investment and the returns from the exit around year 3-5 typically. WHEN YOU RECEIVE YOUR INVESTMENT FUNDS BACK, IMMEDIATELY REINVEST THEM. Keep that money invested! And keep it in PLAY in the real estate market! This means that money has the chance to achieve the 15-18% returns that many funds provide, which compounds very handsomely as you do this consistently.
No money at all?
If you absolutely can’t get your hands on any amount of money, it’s time to intensely evaluate your budget. The things you spend your money on are your priorities. If your budget is full of expensive dinners and overpriced clothing, and you don’t have money left for investing each month, you’re prioritizing those things instead of your financial future! If getting wealthy is important to you, you may need to cut some less vital expenses that aren’t getting you where you want to go in the LONG TERM.
If you want to learn more about strategic budgeting, check out my youtube video about the amazing system for budgeting effectively called the 50/30/20 System. It allows you to look at your income and expenses VERY QUICKLY, and budget with confidence to make sure you’re having enough money for the important things in your life as well as investing in your future.
President of Saint Investment Group
Nic is a two decade seasoned expert in investing and capital raising, specializing in Real Estate and debt markets. With Saint Investment Group, he leads large-scale distressed asset purchases and innovative syndications for investors.