BOOK REVIEW: The Barefoot Investor… Booktopia’s Fastest Selling Book. Ever.

by |January 8, 2017

Take control of your finances with The Barefoot Investor.
A review by Tim Rimington. 

The hype surrounding The Barefoot Investor was so extraordinary that when my partner asked me what I wanted for Christmas, I suggested a copy of Scott Pape’s new book. The number of units Booktopia shipped on the day of its release was breathtaking, and with an 8 hour flight ahead of me these holidays, I saw the perfect opportunity to sit back and see what the hype was about.

Now I’m no slouch with money. I have a few investments, no major debt, and I squirrel money away whenever I can. But I’ve always had that niggling doubt at the back of my mind, “Am I going to be eating Aldi cat food in my latter years of retirement or will I float on waves somewhere in the Caribbean counting my cash?”. Also, I’m on the ‘home stretch’ of my career and I have every reason to be vigilant with my money.

I hate budgets (refreshingly, so does Scott Pape) but I felt I needed a plan. And fast.

As I reclined in my Qantas seat somewhere over the Nullarbor, I began to understand why The Barefoot Investor was sitting high on bestseller lists. From the opening pages where Scott Pape explains how he and his family lost their family farm to bushfire, and what they did to recover, it was obvious that Pape’s advice was something to follow. As he succinctly states throughout the book, “I’ve got this”.

It’s clear that The Barefoot Investor is a blueprint. It teaches ordinary people like you and I how to set in motion a firm savings and investment plan with one primary goal in mind: having enough money in retirement to ensure we’re not perusing the cat food aisle at Aldi when we’re 85. Importantly, he also demonstrates that you don’t need $1 million to retire (Scott Pape calls this the ‘Donald Bradman Strategy’.)

With Scott Pape’s building blocks in place, he shows you how to save for a 20% house deposit, why you shouldn’t wait for the next real estate crash, why buying an investment-property first isn’t sound strategy, and why lender’s mortgage insurance is a total waste of money (hence the 20% deposit). You’ll also learn why the golden rule of real estate is not ‘location, location, location’ – it’s ‘safety, safety, safety’.

Thankfully, The Barefoot Investor is not all about real estate. Far from it, in fact.

Throughout The Barefoot Investor you’ll find case studies, stories told by everyday Aussies on how they’ve adopted The Barefoot Investor strategies as their financial ‘way of life’, and how those strategies have saved their bacon. As I got deeper into the book I found this encouraging; I was able to relate my own experience with money, to many of these people.

What I also like about this guide, is how Scott Pape gets the simple philosophy of “you have to give it away in order to keep it”. There’s a section that discusses how to help lift people out of poverty by lending money to entrepreneurs in 3rd world countries via the Not-for-Profit Kiva. Scott Pape also discusses the importance of leaving behind a legacy (and no, as he writes in his own words, he’s not talking about how you drove a C-Class Mercedes with the quilted trim).

My only gripe with The Barefoot Investor is on a practical note. Sitting at my laptop last night, I set about opening the many no-fee bank accounts Scott Pape recommends. Maybe choosing to do this with a liberal dose of jet lag wasn’t the finest of moves, but I found myself flicking from chapter to chapter, cross-referencing Scott Pape’s instructions with the many (admittedly simple) diagrams, trying to pull the pieces together in order to quickly open the new accounts. There could have been a simple one page set of instructions listing each suggested account by name and the purpose of each account. In fairness, though, I pulled all that information together fairly quickly.

You see, The Barefoot Investor is something of a textbook, a reference guide of sorts where you apply sticky notes and underline important points with that fancy pen you bought at the Duty Free counter.

Like many before me, I’ve also signed up to The Barefoot Investor newsletter and will gladly pay the modest subscription for joining The Barefoot Investor community. And with these building blocks on offer, why not?

  1. Earn more money
  2. Compound your money safely and securely
  3. Build the confidence to live life on your terms

Although I’m only in the setting up phase, I’m quietly confident that The Barefoot Investor will go down as the most profound plane journey read I’m ever likely to read (even more so than the alien conspiracy book I read on my last trip to Bali).

Buy The Barefoot Investor, join the legions of astute investors/followers, and get cracking!

The Barefoot Investorby Scott Pape

The Barefoot Investor

by Scott Pape

This is the only money guide you’ll ever need.

That’s a bold claim, given there are already thousands of finance books on the shelves. So what makes this one different?

Well, you won’t be overwhelmed with a bunch of ‘tips’ … or a strict budget (that you won’t follow). You’ll get a step-by-step formula: open this account, then do this; call this person, and say this; invest money here, and not there. All with a glass of wine in your hand...

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