Getting Rich Quick or Getting Poor Slow?

There are many schemes to “Get Rich Quick” but all of them rely on some form of luck or market timing that is not indefinitely sustainable.  Thus, all of these “get rich quick” bubbles eventually burst.  The only RELIABLE way to get rich quick is by selling “get rich quick” systems to all of the suckers.  (It may not have been PT Barnum who said that there is a sucker born every minute, but whoever did appear to be right)

Actually Getting Rich

This isn’t to say that there aren’t people who will get rich quickly.  The hitch is that getting rich fast involves taking a lot of risks.  In endeavors such as real-estate, trying to get rich fast involves taking on a lot of debt that can become very problematic if real estate values stop rising, or a market correction causes them to fall.  With business endeavors, you will need to have a revolutionary new idea that spurs rapid growth.  Assuming the new idea doesn’t gain traction immediately or you can’t acquire sufficient start-up funding, this endeavor will also run a high risk of failure.

While there isn’t anything wrong with taking informed risks to generate superior returns, it is very important to be reasonable about the chance that the new endeavor won’t be successful immediately.  If you hear anybody talking about a “no risk” strategy for making money fast, it would be a good idea to keep one hand on your wallet.  Many of these”get rich quick” strategies tend to carry a relatively heavy price tag that buys you a long-shot at making some fast money.  (This is the basic allure of playing the lottery)  Paying a small amount of money for a tiny chance at a huge payoff has a sufficiently large emotional appeal to overcome the mathematic disadvantage for many of the people that regularly purchase lottery tickets.

The Bottom Line

Ultimately, the net result of trying to get rich quick is often to get poor slow.  This isn’t to say that there is no wealth out there to be made . . . it’s just that it must be EARNED.  There is no trick to reliably get rich without working.  Building wealth is a long-term endeavor.  This means that it should be undertaken with a long-term perspective.  Earning an advanced degree, starting your own business, and investing in real estate can all help you to become wealthy . . . over the long-term.

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