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Surest Way to $1M
Old 07-26-2012, 10:05 PM   #1
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Surest Way to $1M

Last page of this month's money magazine has a CNN poll results that asks "What is the surest way to reach $1M"?
- Invest in Stocks = 36%
- Buy Real Estate = 21%
- Own a Small Business = 31%
- Win the Lottery = 12%

WIN THE LOTTERY = 12% Really?
More than 1 in 10 people think this is the surest way to $1M...depressing.
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Old 07-26-2012, 10:16 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by UnderTheRadar View Post
Last page of this month's money magazine has a CNN poll results that asks "What is the surest way to reach $1M"?
- Invest in Stocks = 36%
- Buy Real Estate = 21%
- Own a Small Business = 31%
- Win the Lottery = 12%

WIN THE LOTTERY = 12% Really?
More than 1 in 10 people think this is the surest way to $1M...depressing.
For people who never make more than $25K/yr that may be true. I've been unemployed for almost a year and when/if I find another job it'll pay less than $25K/yr. Even with my VERY frugal habits i'll never reach $1M from investing. Of course since I live on so little i'll never need $1M but that's seperate topic.
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Old 07-26-2012, 10:19 PM   #3
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If I had to do it all over again I'd put 33 1/3% in the first 3 choices. I like to diversify.
The 4th option doesn't work for me.
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Old 07-26-2012, 10:50 PM   #4
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Start with $2million and invest with a high fee broker!
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Old 07-26-2012, 11:07 PM   #5
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Start with $2million and invest with a high fee broker!

There are many variations of this theme. Start with 20 million and buy I winery is what some of the Silicon Valley folks I know have done as a semi retirement. The other surefire way is to start with $100 million and buy an airline.

Personally my first choice would be to own your own business, followed by investing in stocks. I'm surprised that marrying a millionaire isn't on the list. Now days you don't even need to be a girl, plenty of guys have done it think of Demi Moore boy toys, and Presidential candidates John Kerry and John McCain.
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Old 07-26-2012, 11:49 PM   #6
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Scratch the small business. Been there, done that. I would like to see the success rate of small entrepreneurs. None of the money that I have now, and I do have a 7-figure sum, comes from the small start-ups I was involved with. In fact, I would have FAR MORE, if I stayed with a megacorp. Would work a lot less hours too.

And when it comes to a small business, most people can only think of common things like a restaurant, a retail shop, etc... How many of those go belly up in a year or two, taking the owner's life savings with it?

Surest way though not the fastest is to work a 9-to-5 job with a megacorp, keep your nose to the grindstone, live LBYM, maxing out 401k, save as much as possible with after-tax money. Invest in stocks. Rental properties if you have the knack for it.
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Old 07-27-2012, 12:33 AM   #7
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Max out 401K for around 25 years. Buy a modest house on a 15-year mortgage and when that is paid off, make it a rental and buy another on a 15-year. Also max out a Roth if you can. Never buy new cars nor carry credit card debt.
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Old 07-27-2012, 07:01 AM   #8
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Sorry for hijacking thread and for typos - typing from iPhone while traveling. Just wanted to mention there are 3% CDs available this week. Just bought some.
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Old 07-27-2012, 07:02 AM   #9
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They didn't include something like put 20% of your income in a low cost target retirement (or equivalent) fund?
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Old 07-27-2012, 07:23 AM   #10
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Sorry for hijacking thread and for typos - typing from iPhone while traveling. Just wanted to mention there are 3% CDs available this week. Just bought some.
What term and where?
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Old 07-27-2012, 07:25 AM   #11
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Speaking of the stock market (in which I don't participate), I was just at a seminar Tuesday in which this broker/owner/software developer gave his sales pitch. He had hundreds of charts to show how the market as a whole is controlled/manipulated by giant banks of computers which react to minor twitches in trends. What is interesting is that he doesn't operate on commission but on a 1% flat fee. Later, when he came to talk to DW and me, I told him all our money was in CD's at 5.5% and had three years before they matured.
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Old 07-27-2012, 07:37 AM   #12
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Of course since I live on so little i'll never need $1M but that's seperate topic.
that's actually the key.. .there will be people with a lot more money than you but they will still have to w%$k.
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Old 07-27-2012, 08:15 AM   #13
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Scratch the small business. Been there, done that. I would like to see the success rate of small entrepreneurs. None of the money that I have now, and I do have a 7-figure sum, comes from the small start-ups I was involved with. In fact, I would have FAR MORE, if I stayed with a megacorp. Would work a lot less hours too.
Actually most of the people I know with 1M+ (self included) did it through owning all or part of a business. Small or midsize. Almost all the rest did it through real estate. I find the ones who do it solely through their stock market "smarts" are actually about as rare as the lottery winners.
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Old 07-27-2012, 08:20 AM   #14
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Agree with NW Bound. Get a good job and save for an extended period. If you can make say $75-100k I think $1mm is well within range. Probably the least risky option too. That was my route which resulted in much more than $1mm. Lucky, I know but survivor bias almost requires luck in this kind of question.
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:00 AM   #15
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Most people I know with $1M+ portfolios (excluding real estate) did it through systematic savings. Maxing out 401Ks and additional after tax savings over many years. Looking at total actual net worth I would expect real estate tips the balance for most people with $1M+.
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:11 AM   #16
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My wife and I will be at a 1M+ in a few years (assuming no market crash) from simply saving a lot and putting it in the stock market, mostly via 401ks and Roth IRAs.

Not a ton of stock market "smarts". Just a very high savings rate, two good incomes, and a lot of patience.


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Actually most of the people I know with 1M+ (self included) did it through owning all or part of a business. Small or midsize. Almost all the rest did it through real estate. I find the ones who do it solely through their stock market "smarts" are actually about as rare as the lottery winners.
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:11 AM   #17
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I will PM you - don't want to highjack the thread
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Originally Posted by pb4uski

What term and where?
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:23 AM   #18
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Get a good degree, and then a good job with a MegaCorp. Live below you means. Manage your tax liability. Marry someone who thinks similar. Don't have kids if you want to get there even faster.
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:33 AM   #19
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I am sure that many small business owners can get to the 1M+ mark a lot sooner than the average worker with his 401k.

But it's just that these people with good entrepreneurial spirits would know what to do already themselves. If someone has to ask how to become a millionaire, then he would be better off doing it the slower ways.

Most of the engineers I worked with were millionaires at the age of 50 or sooner. I got to the 1M mark some time in my very early 40s. Not sure when, because at that time I was working my ass off with these start-ups that failed, and did not check portfolio daily like I do now. Did not get lucky with any stock picks either (I invested solely in MFs, and some were really dogs).

Have 2 houses now, which I bought as "consumption items", not as investments or for rental income. In this depressed real estate market, Zillow estimates put them at only 21% of my net worth. For me, equities rule!
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:33 AM   #20
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obgyn, I might be interested in that rate as well, if you are inclined.
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