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Someone much older and wiser than me recently shared with me this pearl of wisdom: ‘You’ll never be rich unless you can make money while you’re asleep’. Initially it brought to mind images of a super-successful business mogul dozing in the sun on a yacht, not lifting a finger, while his minions toil away from morning to night in some office or factory adding to his millions.
And then it struck me, there are in fact other ways of making money while you are asleep, and one of them is simply by having a sound financial plan in place. Consider yourself to be the owner of a business. Your money represents your employees, beavering away for your financial benefit. A little initial effort is required on your part in setting up some sound investments, but after that those employees could be making you some serious dosh while you put your feet up and take forty winks.
Although Albert Einstein seems an unlikely candidate for doling out financial advice, he was bang on the money when he said ‘Compound interest is the eighth wonder of the world. He who understands it, earns it … he who doesn’t … pays it’. This eighth wonder of the world is a key tool you can use to make money while you’re asleep and you should make it your business to understand it. Let’s look at a simple example.
You get a bonus of $15,000 and decide to invest it in a savings plan. It earns an average 5% annual return. At the end of year one your $15,000 has grown to $15,750. You don’t touch this so that by the end of year two, with interest remaining at 5%, you have not only earned $750 on the initial investment but an additional $37.50 on the interest from year one. That’s essentially free money. While this figure is not in itself life-changing, over a forty year period your $15,000 will grow to just shy of $106,000. Now that is impressive – you’ve made $91,000 with no effort on your part, bar resisting the temptation to spend your accumulating pot of cash!
Of course, regular investments into your savings pot will boost the power of compounding even further. Say you add savings of $200 a month, after 40 years you will have accumulated over $410,000. Time is the magic ingredient when it comes to compounding: the longer you can leave your money working for you, the more it will grow and grow!
And that is why it makes sense to put in place a savings plan as soon as you can. After all, who wouldn’t want to make money while they are asleep?
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