How Did You Make Your First Million Dollars?

A million dollars is no longer the number it was in the eighties. Purchasing power has dropped and cash has become cheaper. That said, it's still the first number out of people's mouths as the one they aspire to. A mil. The big M. It's become more achieveable in recent years, and there are many ways to go about it.

I'd like to ask those who have reached the milestone how they did it. I guess I'm looking for inspiration. I read The Millionaire Next Door a while back, and I'm interested in hearing from those who've reached it. I don't care if it's a million cash sitting there (which is less likely), a million in assets like property (more likely), or a million dollar business. I just won't count leveraged assets that aren't owned outright as your million, like mortgaged real estate or open currency positions … Cause well, anyone can have a million dollars that way.

(Edit for spelling)


      • I guess. Haha.

        • @BradH13 I can feel it brother.

  • +2

    anyone hear about the guy that made a website for advertising and the deal was it was just going to be a single page with a million pixels and people could advertise and just pay $1 per pixel.

    a interesting and fun read.

    • Yep, that's a great idea. That guy was way ahead of the game.

    • +1

      Wow. Virtually every link is dead now.

  • I really hate when people mumble "cust cotting" instead of cost cutting and then pretend all is good; feel like saying yuck fou…

  • +2

    Not a 'million' in one go (but many have with this method) but multiples of my annual salary by:

    1) buy a house in Sydney,

    2) sell a house in Sydney 6 months later after you clear the primary residence period.

    Repeat steps 1 and 2.

    Also, it'll never be too late to enter until you actually hit the burst. I thought it was too late end of last year since clearance rates plummeted to 50% and all my peers was telling me that it was the beginning of the end. Fast-forward 1 year, 1k+ properties listed per weekend, stricter FIRB rulings and still 80% clearance rates.

  • +5

    Put my referral code on OzB, now I'm rolling in the dough.

  • +1

    If money doesn't buy happiness,what would you rather be -Rich and unhappy or poor and unhappy?

    • +3

      The Chinese would say, it's more comfortable to cry in a BMW than to laugh and smile on a bicycle.

      I've asked this question to a lot of my Chinese customers and most have opted being unhappy in the driver seat of a German car rather than being poor but content with what they already have.

      Just food for thought, would you be happy if you won some money at the casino? And your boss gave you a salary increase for being a good worker?

      The acquisition of money itself can be seen as an accomplishment in life so I find it rather odd that people insist on saying money doesn't bring happiness.

      • While money itself doesn't buy happiness, it can buy a few decent proxies for happiness. Things like the time to do what you'd like to do. I agree that it's important to be honest with oneself about the place and purpose of money in life.
        Money makes a lousy master, but there isn't much we can do without it.

    • Irrelevant. I just want people who made a million to tell how they did it.

  • +1

    I made my first $3.28 million from insider trading using call and put options.
    There is no reward without risk.

    • Some people have to loose $3.28 million for someone to collect $3.28 million. And so it goes…

    • Good work mate.

  • -1

    Are there really any millionaires here?? I have doubts people with that much money would be wasting time skimping for bargains.

  • Nope :/ I yet haven't reached anywhere near to that title. (miles away)

  • +1

    I keep hearing that a woman can make you a millionaire. So I followed that advice and found myself one. I'm now a millionaire. So yeah, that's how I did it.

    PS: I used to be a billionaire

  • I'm 32 with a net worth of 250k. The aim is to get there around 40, but I doubt it! I have 2 investment properties about 8k in shares and about 25k in p2p lending. Some great responses here!

    • Very interested in p2p lending.
      Is it high risk?
      Just after first hand feedback.
      Thank you

      • +3

        So far I haven't had one default or even one late payment. Some loans have even paid early. I'm coming onto a year of first hand experience though, which is not long at all. I use Ratesetter which I highly recommend, although liquidity isn't great. I have a small holding in Marketlend, I prefer Ratesetter though. I have a bigger holding in Latrobe financial where you invest in peoples development loans. I trust Latrobe a lot more because it has been a fund manager for 60 years and has a great record in Australia. The loans are secured against the underlying property and the returns are decent. Liquidity is also better with terms as quick as 1 or 2 months. Regarding risk; I cannot honestly assess it because I haven't had a default yet nor have I been in the game long enough to really give you a detailed answer. I think there is a place for p2p lending in any investment portfolio, the question of how much is up to you. Tax wise shares are a much better investment but the volatility annoys me.

        • Just getting into P2P with Ratesetter.

          Haven't done all the research I need to do it as effectively as I'm sure is possible, but it seemed to be the simplest thing that gave higher returns than an interest account, whilst not being complex in any way.

          Risk also seems minimal, call me an idealist…

          Would you agree that this is a much better way than just holding money up in an interest account?? I've got 10k in there at the moment, and thinking about putting my other 10k in there with it. Currently just started my first 1 month loan - still waiting to see any returns and how the numbers add up.

          Thanks for the info!

  • +1

    Sounds crazy, but nearly there (in assets) with bricks and mortar retail and a shit load of saving and going without.

    • Nice Work. What do you sell?

      • +1

        Push bikes :D

  • +20

    Not me personally but my parents, i think it's a humbling story.

    My dad came to australia some 30 years ago with 200USD and two suitcases from China. He was in Melbourne first but eventually came to Sydney. He lived on the floors of people he barely knew and even considered himself lucky. Our family friend had to sleep in public parks. It was tough. He started making money by doing odd jobs, cleaning, washing dishes, and ever manual labor you can think of. He sent money back to China to his parents and wife and child (my mum and brother). Eventually my mum and brother came to Australia too, she also did laborious work. It was all they could do, close to no English they made ends meet with while dealing with early (and still existent) racism and belittlement from the community that was then a lot less accepting as they are now. They would work in oven hot temperatures or in the freezing cold but they would still pull it off all the while at minimum wage. When they were financially stable they had me and my dad eventually started a small business with his friends. My parents were always down right hard working and honest, whether it was cleaning the toilet for someone else or making a customer in their business happy. Everything my generation and onward is the direct result of the decades of hard work my parents went through. We own our house and the business is still running well.

    As a 20 year old it's difficult to truly appreciate it but all i can say is that if i were in my parents situation: No help, no job, close to no money and shelter, no security, not knowing if i could eat my next meal, absolutely lost in a new, confusing foreign world, i would not have been able to pull it off as well as my parents did.

    • +8

      I +voted you once but I think your post is worth 1000+ votes for a number of reasons. Mostly for the respect and appreciation you have for what your parents did for you.
      Appreciation from young people is such a rare thing this days

      • +1

        Thanks maxi!

        I forgot to mention that this applies for so many people around the world and of all different backgrounds, though i see it a lot because a lot of my friends are in the same 2nd generation of migrant families. In this day and age there's too many people who fall under a proverb my parents always say hahah something along the lines of those "born into happiness are ignorant of it" and i think it's completely true, i grew up without economical difficulties (or less than average) and i see kids younger than me who are completely unaware of what hardship brought about what they enjoy today.
        We always forget but i think about it from time to time to appreciate them.

    • I think the ability to be content under such circumstances is worth so much more than reaching a $1M milestone.

  • Worked 2 jobs during uni to buy my first property in Sydney in 2008, my 2nd and 3rd in Central coast in 2010, and my 4th in Sydney in 2011. Got pretty lucky from the boom. Not sure if that first million could be replicated in today's environment.

  • +3

    selling bricks to trump for his wall

  • $50 note and a colour photo copier.

  • +1

    They used Publisher!!!

    (Amateurs, deserved to get caught IMHO).

    • +2

      "He faces a maximum 12 months behind bars." How times have changed. That used to be a deadly serious crime.

      In 1805 at The Old Bailey, London my wife's great-great-great-great grandparents "were indicted for that they, not having the fear of God before their eyes, but being moved and seduced by the instigation of the devil, on the 20th of January, feloniously and traiterously did forge, counterfeit, and coin, a piece of base, false, and counterfeited coin, called a sixpence, made to the likeness of and for a good sixpence, in the similitude and likeness of good and legal current coin of this realm, made of metal, falsely and deceitfully did colour with materials producing the colour of silver."

      Upon conviction they "are severally ordered to be drawn to a place of execution on a hurdle and there to be hanged by the neck until they be dead".

      Later the sentence was commuted to life imprisonment "to be transported to the Eastern Coast of New South Wales or other adjacent Islands".

      • +2

        I'm pretty sure using MS Publisher is a crime, for well anything…

        But, now it is a matter of "do I do this in-house, or OfficeWorks?"

        The irony of being transported for "life" imprisonment was you needed to arrive alive.

        Now it is fashionable to have a convict in the family, well in the past anyways.

        • Pardoned in 1816, they obtained a publican's license in 1817. Their son became one of the wealthiest men in Sydney, owning chunks of Market Street.

        • @PJC:
          Bloody poms…serves them well that the convicts being transported for "life" imprisonment are now here eating prawns and drinking cold beer in beautiful Australia while they are there in a sad cold winter weather most of the year!!!

        • @maxi: Their daughter married a man who owned an inn and 12 acres on George Street. Imagine the value of that land now.

  • +3

    when you go to sell it, but so has the next property you wish to buy.

    So true and unfortunate. In countries like Germany and US, where real estate isn't hitting the sky, quality of life of even those who own houses worth half the value as most of us here, is much better than us. This is because they have access to more luxuries of life at much cheaper price (read as: electronics, cars, energy, travel, holidays, and so on). High value of houses doesn't assure higher quality of life. For example, my mates who own ~$450k house (first home in the country) in reasonably large cities of the US are able to furnish their houses with far more modern electronics and furniture/ furnishing than I can here for my $1.2M house (if I had one), just because they have access to more options and at MUCH better rates. After buying a house, they still have enough money left with them to have domestic/international vacations, cruise trips and a fancy car because this stuff is so much more affordable there. On the other hand, I would have been under at least ~$1M of debt if I had purchases my first house in Australia recently. Whose quality of life is better now from financial perspective (leaving social comparisons aside which is a different debate all together)? I am not saying that affordability of real estate market should decide where you want to live but it definitely plays a very important role in how much you can enjoy your life.

  • Easy, I exchanged just over 100 AUD to Indonesian Rupiah, 1 million in a matter of seconds!

  • hey freakatronic, what was your favourite answer you received here?

    • +1

      Probably something about perspective and no quantity being able to buy happiness. After all, living in Australia means that in global terms we are the 1%. Or maybe the 2.5%.

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