How To Hunt Your Way To Financial Well-Being
As dazzling as a high rate of return sounds to every investor, people need to understand what they’re “hunting” with before chasing certain financial goals, says prominent speaker and financial advisor Jeff Brummett.
“A middle-class investor is probably better aiming for a ‘reasonable rate of return,’ which includes consistent, steady growth over a longer period of time,” says Brummett, a former president and founder of a two-time Inc. 500 company who recently started Green Line Financial Services, LLC (www.greenlinefinancialservices.com) to, in part, improve his neighbors’ financial well-being.
“Going for the big-money return almost always means risking resources that most people simply cannot afford. The middle class and the wealthy hunt with different tools for their respective financial ends.”
What are these different tools for the hunt? Brummett breaks down the analogy.
• People in the upper class hunt money in the same way a person might hunt a deer – with a high-powered rifle. Such a person can be accurate and succeed from long distances because of the rapid speed of the high-powered bullet and the increased accuracy a telescopic sight produces. Also, because of the bullet’s velocity and the ability to quickly re-sight, aim and fire, a wealthy person can afford to miss the target (money) and still catch the prey with a second- or third-round attempt. Even when the wealthy fail, they are not adversely affected by their failure.
• The middle class hunts money with the likes of a knife, spear, or, at best, a bow and arrow. Consequently, the middle class must sneak up on the prey – methodically, slowly and with great perseverance. In most cases, such hunters must get close to the prey to succeed and have only one shot. If they miss, there isn’t time to reload, re-aim and fire before the prey (money) is long gone and out of range – forever. Simply stated, the middle class doesn’t have the time to recover and is generally afforded not more than a single shot at securing a financial future. Every shot must count.
• Step one for the middle class: appreciate slow growth and protect your assets. Appreciate a reasonable rate of return, built over time on the principle of safety first. “This is my first, second and third priority for the middle and upper-middle class,” Brummett says. Also, in recent years, the financial markets have experienced extreme swings. This historic volatility combined with the limited availability of traditional retirement income sources, such as defined benefit pension plans, has placed a greater responsibility on Americans saving for their future, he says. Also, Brummett says, people need to be sure to protect their nest eggs from unnecessary fees.