How To Become A Millionaire
Tyler Green |Publish date: September 17, 2020
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Did you know that over 15,000 people a month search for "How to become a millionaire"
I really wish I knew the percentage of people who actually took action after they searched.
Today Im going to try and give you the most simple yet effective step by step framework in order to become a millionaire.
What if everything related to your personal finances was a tool that was helping grow your finances instead of being a drag.
Whenever I chat with people about making a budget or growing their net worth, their is always one thing that gets overlooked (most of the time its multiple things). I am going to break down all the tools that I believe will help grow your networth, stay on budget, invest easily and ultimately become a millionaire. The goal is to have all these programs, apps, and accounts work for you not against you.
If you follow this framework its not a matter of if you will become a millionaire but a matter of when.
How to Become a Millionaire
The first thing is first, Let's go over how to have your finances set up. How many accounts should you have and what should they be. Some of us just jump straight into how to make more money and that's actually the last thing we will focus on.
We must have our house in order first.
Below I will list all the accounts I personally have and then dive into each category to go over your best options. For us in the middle class, it's so important that we take advantage of every account and program we can to maximize our money.
Here are the basic accounts and framework that will need to be set up in order to become a millionaire.
I like to break it down into four categories:
1. Personal Money Accounts
2. Investment Accounts
3. Tracking Accounts
4. Side Hustles
Emergency Fund Money Market Account ( 5 Months of expenses)
High Rewards Travel Credit Card ( 300,000 travel points and counting)
Tackle this list in order. Once it is all setup circle back to your budget and start looking at your financial goals.
I personally think all your tools should be setup before you start a new budget.
Before you go switching checking accounts I will say this is one of the few accounts that I don't see most people change and that's ok. To be honest there are not a ton of online checking accounts that offer such amazing services that sometimes it doesn't make sense to switch.
The reason we changed our checking account is that our high rewards credit card company offered a checking account with all the same features (and more ) than our local bank. It didn't make any sense to have multiple banks at that point.
We personally have our high rewards credit card, checking account, and Money Market savings account with the same company so we can access everything from one login. It also makes transferring money between accounts instant and 100% free.
So that may be one reason you may want to look at switching, I know that when our High rewards credit card company came out with a checking account we switched immediately and I'm very happy we did.
If I were you I would select My favorite credit card and make sure they have a high interest savings account and Checking account.
Below are our favorite.
So for us we have all three accounts with Capital One.
2. High Interest Savings
3. High Rewards Credit Card
The Checking account doesn't have any crazy features that your local bank doesn't have but it does give you one log in for everything.
There is no way your local bank will have a high rewards credit card that will even compare to the larger companies, not to mention the savings accounts are a joke at your local bank.
My suggestion is to use one of the three platforms below.
We personally have capital one for our checking account, High rewards credit card, and our nest egg savings.
To be honest it just doesn't make sense to stay with your local bank.
Capital one is one of my personal favorites just because that is what we use so I can speak to all its features first hand.
Check out this screenshot of what the phone app looks like.
With one Fingerprint I can access all three of my accounts, transfer money, pay bills, lock down cards, setup alerts and much more.
Here are some cool things I want to mention.
The savings account earns us anywhere from .05% -2% interest every month!
We currently have over 300,000 Travel Points we can use and they never expire!
Citi has an almost identical platform and they are definitely worth looking into .
Great ease of use and your able to check all the boxes of high reward credit cards and High interest account for your savings account.
If It were me starting all over again I would select my favorite rewards credit card and then make sure they offered a checking account as well as a high interest savings account.
You can check out our Favorite Credit Cards Here
If you want to become a millionaire you have to automate everything you can!
Without going over 30% of your credit limit you should transfer every monthly bill possible to your new card.
After you set all your bills up on automatic payments then make sure your credit card is set up to be paid off 48 hours after the statement is posted.
If you want to know how to become a millionaire it's imperative that you setup up systems like this in every part of your budget so you can be efficient and disciplined as possible.
Now your rewards card is working for you and you will never pay a dime of interest. We personally use all of our points for our yearly vacation and you should to!
Download our Budget Planner to see our personal detailed budget and customize it with your own numbers.
I want to help you with more than just this article. The best way I can do that is to have you follow along with my free 7-day email series on how to become a millionaire. If you haven't already you can sign up for our free 7-day email course and get our pre-made budget for free.
If you want to become a millionaire there is no question you must invest. So I've narrowed it down to the top 4 platforms to do so.
This is actually way easier than the first step. The first step takes a lot of time to switch everything over and is kind of a pain in the you know what.
You may be surprised that the investment platforms make it very easy to set up an account and invest.
I can't imagine why.
I will first cover the best platforms and then once you have selected your platform I will then breakdown each account you should open in those platforms. We will also cover how much you need to put in each account to become a millionaire.
M1 Finance in my opinion is the easiest investing platform to use.
This is a hands-down no questions asked statement. Do I think there are other good platforms yes, do I think there are easier ones to use, no.
If you are a beginner when it comes to investing than this is your bread and butter right here.
If you are an expert when it comes to investing than this will still meet all your needs.
I can't stress enough how slick this app and interface is. I opened my first account with m1 finance on my phone, connected my bank account, and funded 2 grand into a couple of funds in under 10 minutes with absolutely no hiccups.
We will get into the funds to choose a little later
For now, you just have to click the Get Started yellow button and you will be set up in no time.
I also set up recurring investments on the app so I only need to log in if I want to check my balance or make a change.
Vanguard is a fan Favorite amongst many investors and I personally have a Vanguard account as well.
Why do I have multiple accounts on multiple platforms?
Well everyone that usually writes blogs like this is already millionaires. They are not in the process of becoming a millionaire like you and me. Most of them have tons of money and are just suggesting what is in their best interest or just copying others' reviews.
I wanted to personally make sure I understood what I am reviewing and recommending.
So back to Vanguard.
In my opinion, Vanguard is a great platform for investing, it has the lowest fees in the industry and some great funds to choose from.
My problem with Vanguard is it feels outdated. The app is ok at best, funding my account, and then buying funds was a huge pain in the butt, to be honest.
You can setup recurring transactions as well but the entire experience Is clunky.
So would I choose vanguard again? If I'm a newbie then no. If you have been around the block a time or two then I would check it out.
This tool is a newer app that I recently discovered and I absolutely love it.
If you want to learn how to become a millionaire then personal capital this is a must. Think of this software like Mint but on steroids.
It pulls in all your accounts and tracks your balances 24/7. I am talking about all your accounts, checking, saving, investments, debts, and mortgages.
So if you are wondering if I have an account with personal capital then yes you would be correct.
I however dont Invest with personal capital.
Their minimum portfolio is 100,000 buy-in. I was not ready to move that much money over to one brokerage just yet.
Some day... probably.
The good news is personal capital is 100% free and it's awesome.
Lastly but certainly not least is Betterment and yes I have an account with betterment.
I figured if we're going to become a millionaire together we might as well make sure we have the best platforms.
In my opinion, Betterment is probably the most well rounded. It's clean and simple, not hard to use like Vanguard but also not as simple as M1. You can not go wrong with betterment no matter what stage of life you are in.
It also tracks somethings similar to personal capital but not as well. I think 99% of people would be happy with Betterment.
It's a great simple option that you can't go wrong with.
If your a newbie I would choose between M1 and Betterment.
If your an experienced investor I would go with Vanguard or Personal Capital.
If you have a 100,000 portfolio or more than I would go with Personal Capital or Betterment.
Accounts Needed to Become a Millionaire
Now you have this shiny new platform! Hooray!
But now what?
What accounts do you need?
How much do you invest in each account?
What funds do you choose inside the accounts?
These are all great questions you should be asking. So don't feel like you are lost. Everyone literally asks the same questions when they first went down this road.
The first thing you will need to do on your new shiny platform is to choose what account you should open.
If you make less than $206,000 combined income or 139,000 if you are single than you 100% need a Roth Ira.
I think every single financial guru on the planet would agree with me.
If you make over these amounts than you must open a Traditional IRA and make sure you understand your options with a backdoor Roth.
Ok so real quick let's understand why we need a Roth Ira to become a millionaire. This account is what we will refer to as a tax beneficial account. That means there are positive implications for you when you invest in this account.
The Roth IRA specifically says you can invest $6,000 a year into this specific account and it will have two main advantages.
1. It will grow tax-free
2. You will eligible for tax-free withdrawals at the age of 59-1/2
So make sure in your new platform the first thing you do is open a Roth IRA.
How much should you invest? If you want to become a millionaire you need to make sure you are maxing this account out every year! That means an average of $500 per month.
Maxing out your Roth IRA alone will make you a millionaire in 30 years' time!
Now technically I could be done writing this article because I just told you the simplest way to become a millionaire, but for most of us, I would like to assume that we are a little more ambitious than a 30-year time frame.
So I will continue to expand on this so we can accelerate our timeline. But even if you can't afford to do any more than 6k a year and you are younger than 35 you can still become a millionaire by retirement age!
Now in the mindset of keeping things simple here's what you need to know about a traditional IRA.
The $6,000 limit is a combined limit between the Roth and Traditional.
That means if you max out your Roth you cant contribute anything to a Traditional IRA. In my opinion, unless you make over the income limits from the Roth IRA ( see above) you shouldn't even worry about a Traditional because the tax benefits are not as good.
The Traditional and Roth are very similar except for these two differences.
1. Traditional IRA allows you to receive a tax deduction for your investment. (this is good)
2. Traditional IRA does not grow tax-free.( not as good)
After you have maxed out your IRA account of choice you will need to open a taxable investment account.
Think of this as the same as your IRA account except there are no tax benefits. That's why you want to make sure you max out your tax benefit accounts first.
Good news for you, all the platforms that I recommended above have all these accounts as an option. After opening an account on all the platforms I would personally have all my accounts in one place.
This means after you choose one platform you don't need to worry about opening another one!
Simpler is better.
Use your selected platform to open your Roth, Traditional, and brokerage account. My personal one is called a Joint taxable account because my wife and I are both on the account.
All That's left to do is choose what funds to select inside those accounts.
My advice for you on this topic... Buy this book. The Simple Path to Wealth
A general rule of thumb is 80% funds and 20% bonds.
So first let's recap.
We have narrowed our financial platforms down to two. The first being a platform like Capital One, Citi or Chase. This platform houses our checking account, high-interest savings account, and high rewards credit card.
Second, we have chosen an investing platform like M1, Vanguard, betterment, or personal capital.
Third, we have opened up a Roth IRA, traditional IRA, and a taxable brokerage account underneath that platform.
lastly, we need to figure out if we have enough money to max out all our accounts and invest to accelerate our timing to become a millionaire. Now, this is one of my biggest motivating factors for writing this article. There are tons of articles that speak in theories and say that you need to max out these accounts in this order to become a millionaire.
If I'm being honest I want to say "well no Sh** Sherlock" when I read those articles. It doesn't take a genius to figure that out.
The question is how to obtain funds in order to so.
There are two ways to do so. The theory is simple, the execution is tough.
1. Cut your budget
2. Make more money
Im going to cover both of those for you.
Now that we have the right platforms it is much easier to actually scale back our budget. If you follow the steps above you will have personal Capital as an app you can track all your spending your budgeting not to mention if you download our Excel budget you can see every single item that we budget for. When you itemize it as detailed as we do it makes it much easier to cut.
I would highly recommend you download our free Excel sheet if you haven't already. It has multiple tabs formulas and all that is missing is your numbers.
One of the things that I like to do before I stress about making more money and see how much I can cut out of my budget before I go about making more money.
here are the top things I would do to restructure my budget and try and cut out all the fluff. I have links to some of our other articles that can help you even more.
Number 1: Financial Purge
The first thing I would do is what I call a finance Purge. For 30 days cancel all the subscriptions that you currently use. After the 30 days only reinstate what you truly missed using. That's one of the easiest ways to knock off a couple of hundred dollars per month in your spending.
Number 2: Shop Everyone
I would personally shop all my service providers the goal here is to save 10%. If we can save 10% and each column that would give you most likely an extra 4 to $500 per month to invest based on your budget.
Number 3: Groceries
Your grocery bill. There are two ways that I like to save money when it comes to groceries. The first being switching the stores that you shop at it may seem quite simple but switching from a Target to a Walmart or Walmart to Aldi can have huge savings implications. Now if you're already doing that or if you want a bonus I would strongly suggest planning out your meals and shopping online. One of the great things about shopping online is you are able to see your car total as you shop and it helps eliminate impulse purchase. Remember we're not trying to save hundreds of dollars here if we can get the 10% we can make a huge impact overall in our budget.
Number 4: Amazon Subscribe and Save
Amazon subscribe and Save. I thought this was so important that we have an entire article dedicated to it that you can read here. Essentially our philosophy is any household item that you know that you will need in the future you can sign up for Amazon subscribe and save and save 10 to 20% and get it automatically shipped to your door every single month. It's a no-brainer.
Number 5: Downgrade the Whip
One of my favorite rules that I came across as I've delved into personal finances is only taking out loans for appreciating assets and pay cash for depreciating assets. Yes, I know you just thought about your car. One of the biggest ways to save a chunk of money is to sell your car and buy a car for the difference in cash. So if you have a car that's worth 20,000 and you owe 10 left on it sell the car and buy a $10,000 cash car. I know people love their cars and I do too but one of the fastest ways to grow your wealth is to eliminate your car payment and eliminate your full coverage insurance because you now have a car that is worth more.
Number 6: Downsize the house
Notice I didn't say Downgrade your home. This out of all of them is probably the least popular, but in my opinion, our homes should be one of the least prioritized items on our budget and yet we idolize our homes and spend way too much money on them. I would strongly suggest you look at downsizing for the sake of the long-term sake of wealth. You don't have to move into a shack or even something that's less desirable. Even if you can make a small lateral downgrade and reduce your payments by 200 to 400 dollars a month. This one move alone would help you max out your investment accounts.
Lastly, we need to decide how we're going to make more money.
Regardless of how well you budget or how much money you make I think we all can agree that we wouldn't mind becoming a millionaire a tad faster.
There are many different ways to make more money and one of the things I love to hammer home with people is you don't need to make a killing to make a dent in your timeline. Just an extra $1,000 a month or $12,000 a year can mean an extra Million in your bank account in the next 30 years.
The more you make, the more accelerated you're wealth becomes. The work/life balance is totally up to you.
I want to be able to give you a framework for the side hustle success and then you decide how much effort you want to put into it.
There's no possible way I can go over every side hustle or that I can relate to every scenario.
But I am positive that this framework will help you crush your side hustle regardless of what niche, industry, or skill level you are at.
First let's go over some side hustle ideas and then go over the framework to actually make sales.
There are hundreds if not thousands of way to make side hustle money.
I'll give you my top ten here and you can read the Full Side Hustle Article Here
Top Ten to make at least $12,000 a year
1. E-commerce Sales - Best Tools (Shopify-Wix)
2. Create online Courses - Best Tools ( Teachable)
3. Create a Local Service Business-(lawncare-power washing-gutter cleaning- window washing)
All you need is a website and a google my business page to get started.
4. Start a podcast- Best Tools (Buzzsprout)
5. Sell practically any of your services online Via Fiverr
6. Sell Customizable Items ( Printify,Shopify, wix, or Etsy)
7. Give Coaching Lessons
8. Graphic Design
9. Flip homes
10. Become a real Estate agent
Step 1: Define your value
No matter what your selling, you must be offering some value.
I like to phrase the question this way because it doesn't put our thought process in a box.
Don't worry about what you're going to sell, how much it will cost, or where you will sell it.
Just simply determine what value you can bring to others. Phrased another way "what problem can you help people solve"
Here are some examples:
I will help clean peoples car at an affordable rate
I will create small business logos for people who are not artists
I will write blogs for companies who need content creation
I will power wash driveways
I will create personalized wedding invitations
If we can figure out what value we have to offer first then we can always find a platform to sell our services.
2. Choose The Platform
Once we figure out what problem we are solving we then need to determine what platform we fit best on.
Here are the 3 platforms:
1. Local service
These would be services provided at the local level. Think of a lawn care service, auto detail, laundry, etc. This service level in my opinion is the easiest to gain business and credibility quickly.
This type of service can be local or web-based. Think of a web developer, a graphic design artist, a film editor, an Etsy or Fiverr seller. You can check out our Fiverr interview here.
This type of service is where you sell your product online. This can be dropshipping, affiliate marketing, amazon reseller, etc. This type of side hustle can be the cheapest to start with the highest reward. There is a kicker, it is by far the longest road to success and most will never see success at this level. The competition is plentiful.
If you have your value first, choosing the platform to sell will come naturally.
If you do things in the reverse order you can put yourself in a box, and we don't need to make things harder than they already are.
3. Open your storefront
Now this line may scare you a little bit but I'm not talking about a physical storefront, Im talking about where people will first discover you.
Your Online Storefront. Check out this fact.
Google handles 3.8 million searches per minute on average across the globe. That comes out to 228 million searches per hour, 5.6 billion searches per day, or 2 trillion searches per year
It is safe to say Google and its search power are here to stay and we need to make sure you get a piece of the pie.
Heres what Matters
Take your time, and do it right.
Just because it is something on the side doesn't mean you half-ass it.
This article "ultimate guide to starting a side hustle" breaks it down step by step at each level, I highly recommend you read it before you start.
This article breaks down the "top tools for entrepreneurs" and has tons of free resources you can utilize to get your side hustle off the ground.
I don't have enough time to get into all of them here, so please read the articles above.
Here are a few crucial ones
1. Wix - Website Builder
2. Fiverr- Logo's/ graphic design/ anything you can think of
3. Vista Print- For local service business cards and flyers
4. Register your business on Google and other local online registries
4. Next Stop- REVIEWS
Now you may be thinking reviews come after you have happy customers and although that is true we need some reviews for credibility, conversion, and ranking.
You have to remember two things, 90% of your business will be people you don't know, that means your reputation, skill, and trustworthiness means nothing to them. We must create that persona online via reviews.
If you are a local service then you want reviews on Google, if you are a freelancer you will want all your reviews on the platform you sell on (Fiverr, Etsy, Teachable, Amazon, Etc.).
I would aim for 50-100 reviews at a minimum as you officially launch.
So how do you get reviews for a business that doesn't exist?
One of two ways.
1. Get character reviews of honest people who can speak to your credibility and trustworthiness. Not every review has to be about your service or product.
2. When you first start I would suggest a " soft opening" where you run a heavily discounted promotion in order to generate some business to friends, family, and your network. In exchange for your deep discount don't be shy and ask for a 5-star review and a social media share.
These four steps will give you a great foundation to launch from. It takes time, it takes a lot of work, but it can be done.
Let's figure out how to drive traffic to our side hustle and then where we should put that money. If you can do this last step in halfway successfully you can accelerate your retirement and wealth by literally years and years.
Again, this will be a light framework but there will be articles you can dive deeper into, which I strongly suggest If you want to give yourself the biggest advantages.
So by now, you know what your selling, where your selling, and are thinking about who to obtain 100 reviews from.
Which is one of the best ways to not only gain traffic but to actually convert traffic! So go get those reviews!
Once your website or actual storefront is all set up and pretty you will need to get potential customers in front of that store! If you haven't built your website I highly recommended Wix, It has every tool you can ever imagine and you don't need to know an ounce of code.
Many of us get to this step pretty easily and we are pumped. We are on top of the world, we are ready for our side hustles to explode, customers to flock in.
Only to be sadly disappointed to hear crickets chirping and our pride is hurt more than chaffed nipples after your first half marathon. Seriously It happened to me, it hurts.
So what gets missed?
I don't know why but this is by far the most common theme I see. So instead of letting that happen to you Im going to help you make a plan.
Let me warn you, your plan will change many times. Changing is ok, not having a plan is not ok.
Let's jump in and go over some options on how to get traffic.
Whatever your plan is stick with it, learn from it, and don't be scared to switch your plan at a drop of a hat.
Here are some great Ideas for Gaining Traffic:
Note, not all these will apply to every platform.
1. Old Fashion Door knocking
2. Door Hangers
3. Google Ad Words
4. FB Groups
5. Business Networking Groups
6. Social Media Paid Ads
7. Cold Calling
8. SEO optimization
9. Referral loyalty programs
10. Raffel your service/product at a charity event for free.
Some of these ideas you will laugh at and some will seem great, if you want a full-blown marketing PhD than I would strongly recommend Russell Brunson and Click Funnels.
Keep in mind that there are businesses and side hustles that have been successful with every single one of these strategies. Find what works for you and double down on it.
These little tips will help you get started but if you want to crush it check out all the tools and tips here: "Best tools for Entrepreneurs"
6. Converting Traffic
Unfortunately getting traffic is only half the equation.
But the good news is getting the traffic is actually harder than converting them.
Here are some pointers to converting traffic.
1. Portray yourself as confident but not arrogant.
2. Have an irresistible offer
3. Gain their email/ contact info so you can sell to them later
4. Add a personal touch.
5. Show off those reviews you worked so hard for
6. Always Be Closing
7. Set yourself apart from your competition
8. Go above and beyond for the customer
9. Dont be afraid to adjust the price on the fly
10. Work harder than anyone else
BOOM... If you can do all of that you will make sales PERIOD.
Don't Forget Fiverr is a great place to outsource tasks that either you hate doing or that you just aren't good at.
We hope this helps you save, budget and relieve some stress from your life. Dont forget to sign up for our free step by step email course