Millionaire Interview 1. I have started a series called Millionaire Interviews. There is no better way to learn how to build wealth than from those who have already done so. Along those lines, I ask millionaire bloggers or even millionaires who are not bloggers a series of 11 questions that they answer. The questions are highlighted in bold and the answers are below each question. Hopefully, the answers are enlightening and will help you on your journey to build wealth and attain the $1,000,000 mark and beyond.
The millionaires in the Millionaire Interview series became millionaires at a younger age than the Secret Dividend Millionaires. This comes down to mostly having higher incomes. Second, they are not very frugal to the point of austerity as some of the Secret Dividend Millionaires but certainly save more than they earn and save more than the average person. Lastly, most have multiple sources of income.
Before we start with Millionaire Interview 1, if you are a millionaire blogger or even a millionaire who doesn’t blog and want to be a part of this series, just send me an e-mail or message me on Twitter.
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Millionaire Interview 1 – Young Dividend
Millionaire interview 1 is with an anonymous blogger known as Young Dividend. I have followed his blog for a few years. He details his portfolio, buys, dividends, and updates on his blog. His portfolio value recently crossed the $1 million dollar mark earlier this year and he currently receives over $24 thousand in dividends annually.
- Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am now 30 and from California. I am now a Director position at a technology company. My education is in engineering and I was a PhD candidate but left early to pursue industry.
- What is your net worth? At what age did you become a millionaire? How many years did it take to become a millionaire? Do you have any debt?
It is around $1 million now at the age of 30. I started investing at 19, but the increase in assets really began after I graduated from school and started working in industry at age 23. I did not have debt, I worked while in school part time. I do not have a mortgage or car loan. Credit cards are paid on time in full.
- How did you become a millionaire?
I became a millionaire spending less than I earn and investing a lot of my take home income. My investments have done well, and the dividends reinvested help even more. My growth has been fueled mostly by dividend stocks and my vocational income helping invest in more stocks.
- What is your investing philosophy, and do you use a particular strategy?
I like to invest for income, and I need that income to grow on its own where I to stop investing. This is dividend growth investing. The safety of that dividend is everything.
- What was your best investment? What was your worst investment?
I had a few investments that cut the dividend. I recall Seadrill, Kinder Morgan, and Kraft Heinz as a few that did not go well. Most investments have done well and took care of the losers. The best I can think of is NextEra Energy, Church and Dwight, and Visa, as a few. There have been many other great investments.
- How much time per day or week do you spend reading financial news and going over your investments?
Every day I read financial news. Periodic reviews on my investments are done weekly and a large review is done monthly. I do not use financial advisors as I invest myself.
- What habits helped you become a millionaire?
Frugality helped in the beginning, but over time I became less frugal as quality of life was important too. I don’t mind spending money on experiences and friends, even tipping I am more generous now. I don’t mind spending on education or assets. I don’t like to spend money on depreciating assets.
- What are your three favorite books related to investing, personal finance, retirement, and financial freedom?
The Single Best Investment by Miller is a good book. I also like The Most Important Thing Illuminated by Marks.
- Why do you blog about your investing and journey to millionaire status and financial freedom?
I hoped it would help others on their journey. And it’s a way for me to keep track of my past and progress.
- Besides investing what else do you like to do?
I like piano, photography, travel, flowers, good food, wine, and learning foreign languages.
- Anything else you would like to add?
The most important thing is to keep at it through good times and bad times, and even when you’re down and people are knocking you down. When I started people made fun of how the annual income of my portfolio was only around $10 a month, surely putting this much energy to buy a happy meal was not worth it. Then it became $100 and still some felt you cannot do much with $100, maybe pay the electric bill. Then it became $1000 a month, now it’s over $2000 a month, it will soon grow over $3000 a month. Over time people stopped commenting and started asking what I invest in or if they can invest their money for them. It is also important to be able to control one’s mental self, it is easy to follow the crowd however investing is the opposite. When others are fearful you need to be greedy, and vice versa. The best purchases I made were when everyone was selling and thought the world would end (i.e., COVID19).
Final Thoughts on Millionaire Interview 1
I hope that you enjoyed reading about Young Dividend in Millionaire Interview 1. Check out his blog at the link above. His story is inspiring and shows that it is possible to attain a net worth of over $1 million by dividend growth investing. In an earlier article I identified the three principles of dividend millionaires: spend less than you earn, invest your savings, and reinvest the dividend. Your odds of becoming a millionaire are about 3.6% in the U.S. But I would argue that through systematic earnings, saving, and investing you can improve your odds. Young Dividend has certainly shown us that it is possible
As a final note, I have another series called Secret Dividend Millionaires. This one is about ordinary people who became millionaires by investing in dividend paying stocks for the most part. Most of these people were only discovered after they died and left their money to charities and other non-profit organizations. Often, they became millionaires through very frugal if not austere living, investing their savings in stocks that paid dividends, and reinvesting the dividends.
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Prakash Kolli is the founder of the Dividend Power site. He is a self-taught investor, analyst, and writer on dividend growth stocks and financial independence. His writings can be found on Seeking Alpha, InvestorPlace, Business Insider, Nasdaq, TalkMarkets, ValueWalk, The Money Show, Forbes, Yahoo Finance, and leading financial sites. In addition, he is part of the Portfolio Insight and Sure Dividend teams. He was recently in the top 1.0% and 100 (73 out of over 13,450) financial bloggers, as tracked by TipRanks (an independent analyst tracking site) for his articles on Seeking Alpha.