6 reasons most people will never get rich…


Fact is: most people will never get rich, despite their best efforts.

However, having worked with hundreds and hundreds of property investors over the years, I discovered that successful property investors do things in a certain way that helps them become rich, while others continue doing things differently and tend to struggle.

And I’ve come to the conclusion that when you do what most successful investors do, you get to become one of them, and if you don’t, you won’t.

So let’s look at six simple reasons most people will never get rich and how to make sure you do:

Reason 1 – Most people wait too long to start

Most people can’t wait to succeed, yet they are willing to wait to get started on the road to success.

Many investors are waiting for everything to be “perfect” before they get going. Time for action

They wait for the right time in the cycle, the right property, the right economic environment or the right interest rates.

Which means they never get going.

The longer you wait to get started with your investing, the longer it will be before you get the money, success and freedom you want.

It takes time to grow real wealth.

It takes time for the power of compounding to work its magic.

You need to understand that the timing will never be perfect or you will never have all the information you want.

You need to develop the confidence to make an investment decision based on knowing enough and realising that you will learn the rest along the way.

Reason 2 – Fear stops them 

Fear keeps many of us from getting what we want, especially in matters of money.

It’s true for me and it’s true for you.

Be honest with yourself and count the number of times fear has prevented you from taking action, and in the process, cost you a lost financial opportunity.

In the matter of property investment, fear holds many investors back.

Some fear taking on more debt, others fear failure and some even have a fear of success (will my friends still like me?).

Successful investors have learned to harness their fears and rather than focus on the negatives, they use fear to force them into positive action.

For example, rather than allowing fear of debt to stop them from taking on the commitment of buying a property, they use the fear of not moving forward with their investments to motivate them.

They use the fear of being stuck in their job for the rest of their lives, without the financial independence that they are craving, to motivate them to take on the commitment oAnxious girlf an investment property.

Just like a river, fear can be bridged.

The river of fear is only as deep and as wide as you allow it to be.

And once you’ve crossed that river of fear and experienced the success on the other side, you usually look back and wonder why you were ever afraid.

But here’s the catch; the only people who actually realise this are those that have crossed the river and stand on the other side.

Money and success live on the other side of fear.

Reason 3 – Waiting until they know enough

The fear of not knowing enough prevents other investors from getting started.

However, the irony here is that the more you learn, the more you learn that you don’t know!

Once you start learning some basic investment concepts you suddenly realise there are a whole lot more things about investing or property that you don’t understand.

That’s the paradox of knowledge.

The more you learn, the more you learn you don’t know.

The trap is that many investors think that the way to escape this paradox is to learn even more, so they read more books, go to more seminars, listen to CD’s and watch DVD’s.

As they learn more they find a whole heap more things they don’t yet know.

The way out is to recognize that while you don’t know it all, and you never will, you do know enough to get started with your investing and you will learn more along the way as you apply your knowledge in the real world, surviving any mistakes and challenges along the way.

Reason 4 – Focusing on linear income instead of passive incomeFocusing on linear income

It is important to realise that not all income is created equal.

Some streams are linear and some are passive.

Linear income is what you get from a job.

You work for an hour and get paid once for that hour’s work, and that’s it.

If you don’t turn up to work you don’t get paid.

Passive income is when you work once but continue to get paid over and over again from work you’re no longer doing.

The way to become wealthy is having passive income coming in whether you go to work or not.

Wouldn’t it be nice to be paid hundreds of times for every hour you work? 

That’s what happens to property investors.

Initially they work long hours and save up a deposit and then invest it into a property.

Now their money starts working for them and keeps giving them sound investments returns “passively” in the form of capital growth and rental returns.

Rather than getting another job, the wealthy people know they need to send their money out to work for them.

To put it simply “if you’re not making money while you sleep, you’ll never become rich.”

Reason 5 – Not using systems for making money

A system for making money is something that takes the emotion out of your investment decisions and makes the results more reproducible.

My preferred system is investing in high-growth property.

In particular, I invest in high-growth properties in areas that are in the upturn stage of their property cycle.

I buy them below replacement cost and then add value through renovations or redevelopment.

I never sell these properties.

I borrow against the increased equity in my property portfolio to buy more properties.

Once you create a proven system for making money, there is no limit to the money you can make.

Reason 6 – Not being patient

Warren Buffet once said: “wealth is the transfer of money from the impatient to the patient.”

To become a successful property investor requires patience and persistence. Warren Buffett

You must not only get started, but you must continue on and follow through.

Residential property is a long-term investment.

It’s not a get-rich-quick scheme.

Yet many investors speculate rather than invest.

They look for that “big deal” that will land them a jackpot in a short period of time.

In general, these types of deals rarely occur and if you find them, are speculative in nature and riskier.

The problem for many investors is that the successful buy-and-hold strategy I advocate is boring and others consider it slow.Many investors look for the latest fad

But successful property investment is a long-term affair.

Many investors look for the latest fad or try finding the next hot spot or speculative growth areas. 

Other investors consider other types of investments with potentially higher returns.

When you are tempted to do this remind yourself that real estate has been the number one long-term multi-millionaire maker throughout Australia’s history, yet most people that speculate in the latest fads have not made much money.

You don’t have to look for the latest fads or the latest speculative growth areas if you create your own capital growth through buying a good property at a fair price, then adding value through refurbishments, renovations or redevelopments.

By doing this you are manufacturing your own capital growth.

So, it’s really quite simple…

Decide to do these six things that successful property investors do and you are much more likely to become a successful and wealthy property investor.

If you don’t do them, then like most people, you may never get rich.


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Michael is a director of Metropole Property Strategists who help their clients grow, protect and pass on their wealth through independent, unbiased property advice and advocacy. He's once again been voted Australia's leading property investment adviser and one of Australia's 50 most influential Thought Leaders. His opinions are regularly featured in the media. Visit Metropole.com.au

'6 reasons most people will never get rich…' have 8 comments

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    April 8, 2020 Denny

    thanks for your sharing, it was very helpful.


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    June 26, 2018 sugar mummy

    Wonderful article. Thanks for sharing this with us.


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    April 16, 2016 Sanjiv Shah

    Hi Michael

    I learn so much from your articles and have also bought your book “Rules of Property”. You have often suggested avoiding buying off the plan. As an overseas investor who is only permitted to buy off plan apartments and house and land, what strategy would you recommend? I would like to focus only on capital cities as you advocate. Thank you for your insights.


      April 16, 2016 Michael Yardney

      As you are restricted to new proeprties I would buy in a small new complex int he middle ring suburbs of Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane and one that is aimed at owner occupiers – not invetsors. Not in one of the high density complexes


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    March 28, 2013 Tarnia Robinson

    Very Inspiring And Motivating!!! I Loved this article…. I Bought My First Property When I Was 24 And I Never Really Knew Much About Investing And Im Still Learning So Much, I Just Knew I Wanted To Be Apart Of It, As I Always Thought This Will Serve Me Well One day…. Fear Has Never Worried Me In Taking A Step Forward, But The Ability To Learn And Retain So Much information Did, And Still Does,but Now That Im Older, I Have Realised The More You practice The Better You Become…My Down Fall With Becoming A successful Investor I Feel, Is That I Need To Be Around More Likeminded Ppl, Instead Of Those Who Keep Talking About Wanting To Do It…I Need To Surround Myself Around Ppl That Are
    Actioning Their Words And Not Just Talking About It… Reading This Great article Has Just Given Me That
    Reminder That I Needed To Get Focussed, So Thank You Michael For Contributing This Well Written And Easy To Get Property Pointers!!!! Im A Long Way Off From Becoming Succesful, But I Have The Patience To Watch, Learn And Slowly Grow…. Also I feel Im At The Right Age To Want To Learn And Gain more knowledge To Become successful In The Property Market And Feel More Confident To Get Out There And Get Amongst It ;))) No Regrets!!! As Im Always Learning And Growing :)) Knowlege Is Not Wisdom, Wisdom Is doing!! Actions Always Speak Louder Than Words!!! 2013 Is My Year 😉


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    July 14, 2012 dong

    nice article. i learned a lot. it is kinda give me a little courage to go forward, and decide rather i am stay happy with poor or, need be sleepless and get rich lol


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    April 4, 2012 RK Realty Group

    Yes, excellent article Michael. I’m a new follower of your entries. Keep it up!


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    March 2, 2012 Nobby Kleinman

    Great article Michael. And all true points.
    If only there was some way to convince people the sooner they start, then the easier it will be throughout the journey, and the greater the reward.
    As in Louise Bedfrods article, it start with education and family environment.
    There is no excuse to be poor, unless thats what you want.
    There is no magic button! Manifesting wealth is lving with fairies.
    If it worked, I am sure I would have a Ferrari in the driveway! ha ha. 🙂
    (The again, maybe not!)


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