Saturday, December 19, 2015

Book Review: Build Wealth & Spend It All

Build Wealth & Spend It All: Enjoy The Life You Earned

About the Book:

You can build wealth. You need to protect your retirement savings from future nationalization, taxation and redistribution. You deserve to spend everything you have earned and saved before you die. 
This is not a novel to numb the pain in your life for just a couple of hours. It is a tool box with the tools you can use to fix your life...forever. 
Dr. Riggs has been building wealth for over fifty years through several very different and very successful careers, each of which made him a multimillionaire. In this book he explains the three basic and easy to understand financial concepts anyone can use to both build and protect their wealth. But it was only during this past year, while he was visiting his 96 yr. old mother in a nursing home, he gained insight into what awaits most of our retirement savings.
The money his mother had earned as a public school teacher and had frugally saved for over 50 years was rapidly being drained away as she dozed off in her chair. They were taking it simply because she still had it; while other residents who had already enjoyed spending their money, were now getting a free ride.
He had helped his mother to save and invest when he should have encouraged her to spend. He had failed his own mother by not encouraging her to spend all she had earned and saved, while she was still able to enjoy it. But he was determined not to fail himself.
He needed a plan...a logical plan to enjoy strategically spending or gifting it all away over a predetermined period of time; before the private IRA, 401(k) and Roth retirement accounts are nationalized and redistributed. He needed a plan to spend it all and die broke - insolvent, but not illiquid or destitute. 
Surprisingly, his plan for building his wealth was simpler and came more naturally to him than his plan for spending it all. 
In this book he explains the three basic and easy-to-understand financial concepts anyone can use to help build their own wealth:
(1) Understand the difference between true assets and actual liabilities. 
(2) Always know where you are in the economic cycle. 
(3) Understand the implications of the coming demographic changes. 
Your grave stone will have two dates separated by a hyphen. You have no control over the dates but you do have control over the hyphen ... that's your life. Let this book show you how to make the most of that hyphen.

My Comments:

Most financial planning books tell you to save your money while you are young, invest it in mutual funds, and withdraw part of it when you are old, and leave the rest to your kids.  This book agrees with part about saving your money, but it is the author's opinion that our tax system/government is going to end up confiscating large portions of people's IRAs and 401Ks to get the money to support all the baby boomers who have not saved enough for retirement.  Stanley Riggs, the author, is a fan of investing in real estate and businesses.  He is also in favor of people front-loading their retirement spending during the first years of retirement, and then dying broke, or close to it.  

The book was easy to read and if you agree with his assessment that the government is going to take people's retirement accounts, then you'll probably agree with his choice of investments.  Since I don't agree with that prediction, I take a jaundiced eye toward the book.

I'd like to thank the publisher for making a complimentary review copy available via NetGalley.  Grade:  B-.  
Disease Called Debt

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